January 17, 2019

So Long, Burt Reynolds.

“So long, Burt. We’re all going to miss you. That’s me speaking for the whole world. (At least the whole world of a certain age.)

You don’t mind my going by your first name, right? I mean: We never met in person, and if we had, I’d have minded my manners at the start and addressed you as “Mr. Reynolds.” That’s how my late mother raised me — and, by the way, she loved watching you at work, too.
But even as I’m imagining it, that seems wrong somehow. Because for as long as I’ve known you — and that’s practically my whole life, albeit only through screens of various sizes — I’ve felt as though we’d be such good friends from the start and I could call you “Burt” without flinching.
From there, I always guessed we could kick back and I’d start asking you about your long, roller coaster of a career. No matter what room we were in, we’d be there for days as I got your takes on people as varied as Jim Brown, Johnny Carson, Raquel Welch, Roger Moore, Quentin Tarantino, Jackie Gleason, Clint Eastwood, Dean Martin, Elizabeth Taylor, Howard Cosell, Tammy Wynette, Jon Voight and many, many more.”

Read more

JJ Editor's Picks

"Kenya has been an al-Shabaab target for years. It seems like that will continue, even with US-backed military efforts to defeat the terrorists."

"The president publicly brags he is getting the best of Democrats as unhappy campaign officials find themselves trying to fire up his base."

"An unnamed senior Israeli lawyer was arrested on suspicion of demanding sexual favors in exchange for judicial appointments. Two more suspects, including a female judge from the center of the country, were also arrested in connection with the case."

"I've always wondered what fans see in her. After debating with a friend about her “merits” for over half a decade now, I thought I had found the one thing that could probably change my opinion of the pop star: the Reputation tour documentary..."

" The lifestyles of Iran’s privileged youths — including expensive holidays, glitzy parties and access to cash and jobs — have sparked public anger in recent months as U.S. sanctions squeeze the economy."

"34 technology companies announced their membership of a Cybersecurity Tech Accord, it was portrayed as proof that the private sector was, at long last, taking responsibility for protecting civilians online... that’s not automatically a good thing."

"Brands feel pressure from Millennial and Gen Z shoppers to step beyond the bounds of straightforward consumer-product marketing. “I think it is important to stand for more than the product’s benefit that you provide..."

"Free self-improvement idea for 2019: become Susan Sontag. Listen, it’s not as hard as it sounds... you might have a very interesting year."

"While on vacation in New Zealand, a family with “approximately 12” but maybe as many as 15 members spent nearly a month terrorizing the nation before the government gave them an official deportation notice."

"Dated was the word one friend used after going to Benno, and if you’ve eaten there, too, you’ll know why. It’s as if the past 15 years in food never happened. "

"Israel is in the midst of an ambitious mass-transit project, a new light-rail network... But the project has drawn the ire of environmentalists, who say it threatens a precious resource: Tel Aviv’s towering, glossy-leafed ficus trees."

"In the 21st century, the criteria for identifying a Jew remains contested. In the United States, Robert Mnookin points out, several critical challenges add a sense of urgency to the age-old debate."