From the Publisher April 2017
Max & Joanne Friedland
Some of our writers leave the choice of titles for their submissions up to our editors. As a much-criticized punster, lover of alliteration and an unappreciated practitioner of the art of wordplay I enthusiastically await this responsibility. Other than participating in the naming of my two children, the naming of this publication and an experience I had many years ago in Los Angeles, this is the most fun I have.
During the 1980’s I had an office on the 17th floor of a Century City building. Across the hall was a suite of offices rented to an automotive consulting firm. The service that the firm provided was coming up with focus-tested names for cars, providing generations of Fords, GMC’s, Hondas, Toyotas and Nissans their public personas. This champion of the eponymous arts with a degree from USC was a one-man shop. He often put his head around our office door and invited my staff and me to lunch. “Beer and sandwiches on me!” he would yell. His cave like premises had quite the mad scientist look, most striking were the myriad scraps of paper thumbtacked to the walls. He would often joke that his bible, the New Oxford English Dictionary, had exploded resulting in the mess. Since then I have kept an eye out for newer model vehicles to see whether the fruits of our beer soaked midday repasts had made it to the big time. On the rare occasion that I see a name I recognize and I send him my silent congratulations, “Good on you mate, the next beer is on me.”
Our story, The New Normal? pages 28-31, covers the recent spate of anti-Semitic hate crimes in the Las Vegas valley. Choosing its title was no easy task, given the unsettling subject matter. Most media would have gone big and bold with stark statements in 4” block type. We reject this direction and chose an invitation to dialogue, is this “really” the new normal?
In Show Me the Green pages 46-51 we discuss the color of the year for 2017, or at least the one sanctioned by the international doyen of color, the Pantone Corporation. Once again it is all about the name. In their choice of Greenery 15-0343, they steer away from the obvious question “Which green?” opting for a color that embodies the full splendor of multi-green foliage. A gutsy and bold move I would say!
Frank Sinatra’s “Luck be a Lady” was the soundtrack for an era that produced the mid-century modern architecture that now populates many of Las Vegas’ older neighborhoods. In her piece Luck be a Lady, pages 52-56 Lissa Townsend Rodgers explores these relics of a long gone era that have once again become hot sellers just like Frank’s song, in the day.
It’s Matzo time folks, the manufacturers of ex-lax and I want to wish you all a Pesach Sameach (Happy Passover), if I don’t see you at the Seder table (Passover meal), I’ll see you in the racks.
Max D. Friedland