Cartoon Country

By Cullen Murphy From Cartoon Country, 2017 Click. That was my after-school job—pressing down on the shutter release—from around the age of six until sometime in my teens. My father had bought a Polaroid camera in 1949, soon after the first one came on the market, the...

The Black Stallion

By Dave Kehr Chicago Magazine, April 1980 The first movie ever made, an 1877 experiment by Eadweard Muybridge, was about horses. And when the movies reached maturity, around the turn of the century, the genre that quickly established itself as the most popular and...

On Disney

By Sergei Eisenstein From On Disney, 1986 Alma-Ata, 16, November 1941 ‘The work of this master is the greatest contribution of the American people to art.’ Dozens and dozens of newspaper clippings, modifying this sentence in various ways, pour down upon the astonished...

On Bird

By Nat Hentoff From Jazz Is, 1976 There have been a number of instances in jazz history of the incandescent hero-as-world-overturning-improviser eventually plunging, like Icarus, into burnt-out extinction. Bix Beiderbecke, Bunny Berigan, Fats Navarro, and, way back,...

Top of the Heap

By William Nack From Lasting Yankee Stadium Memories, 2000 On a balmy afternoon in February, 1999, as old Yankee Stadium was getting her face lifted and nails polished for the spring opener, I visited the grand old yard to peer into the nooks and corners of her...

August of 1959

By William Nack From Bloodlines, 2006 In the summer of 1959, not far from that old wooden bandbox known as Arlington Park, I awoke early one morning in my bunk in Barn 4A, descended the rickety staircase from my room, and there at once found myself living out the...

How Pryor Put Cosby Behind Him

By Scott Saul From Becoming Richard Pryor, 2014 When Richard Pryor first came on the national scene in the mid ’60s, he was a comic who consciously followed the blueprint established by Bill Cosby. Never mind that Pryor, even when he was doing a clean act, lacked...

Hunter In Zaire

By George Plimpton From Shadow Box, 1977 I had a number of people to see the next day. I dropped in to see Hunter Thompson. I found him in his room. “I got everything stashed behind the pipes,” he said, after he had peeked out a crack in the door to make sure who I...