July 20, 1988 |
Like pitchmen, they hawk their chariots, these underground chauffeurs of Camden. "Ride, sugar?" "Taxi?" They ply their gypsy trade to shoppers who enter the Pathmark on Mount Ephraim Avenue or who exit the cashier's line. Gypsy cabbies they are, men who scratch out an income by giving rides to the poor without wheels. Some charge market rates; others take only donations. There are no meters, no taxi licenses from the city, no commercial liability insurance - just a familiar coach to climb into and a hack who might even bag the groceries and deliver them along with the passenger to the doorstep.
December 3, 2002 |
The interior of St. Gabriel's Church at 29th and Dickinson in Grays Ferry is magnificent - a block-long, cavernous space of wooden pews, marble floors, stained glass, and three-story-high pillars. It is in an unlikely neighborhood for Hollywood types, but during the last several months, a lot of them have walked through as members of the cast and crew of Hack, the first network series to be shot entirely in Philadelphia. "It's marvelous. It's certainly no soundstage in Santa Monica [Calif.
April 2, 1996 |
COMMIES TELL SMOKERS: 'BUTT OUTTA HERE' It could never have happened when Deng Xiaoping was in charge. China has banned smoking in Beijing's cavernous Great Hall of the People. The management of the hall that dominates Tiananmen Square banned smoking from all meeting halls, lounges, corridors and rest rooms starting yesterday, the Xinhua news agency said. Oh, for the . . . hack, hack . . . good old days. Paramount leader Deng used to meet foreign leaders with an ashtray nearby.
March 28, 2008 |
Simon Pegg is once again the quintessential UK slacker in "Run Fat Boy Run. " It's a rehash of the role he perfected gloriously in "Shaun of the Dead," - shiftless boyfriend who tries to win back exasperated/neglected girlfriend. Only without any of that movie's energy, wit or genre-bending inventiveness. Instead, we get the sort of flat-footed studio film that takes the basic ingredients of an underground hit, drains them of personality and style, and spits them out as a situation comedy.
November 3, 1993
All right. We can stop pretending we don't like those nasty negative campaigns or those politicians who will stop at nothing to get or keep a job. There was one shameless hack who wanted a nice job on Superior Court, an appellate court demanding scholarship, intelligence, judicial probity and knowledge of the law. The hack bought radio time in which he accused his better-qualified opponent of being anti-Christmas. There was even a carol playing in the background. What this has to do with the courts, unless it's a promise by the hack to ignore the Constitution and personally hoist up his robes and slap up creches in every town hall in the commonwealth, is unclear.
January 28, 1986
This year we've been besieged by advertising exploiting the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. One can only speculate on what might have been accomplished if the money that one national fast-food chain spent on television commercials honoring the civil rights leader had instead been applied 20 years ago to his crusade. Now that the man is safely dead, generating no new controversy and in the public domain, he's just another expedient way to sell burgers and fries. In view of the annual February appearance of actors in television commercials wearing stovepipe hats and powdered wigs and who tout all manner of products in the names of Washington and Lincoln, how long before we turn on our sets and see some pitchman saying, "I have a dream - only 7.9 APR financing on any car in stock"?
August 5, 2002 |
We may never be known as "Hollywood on the Schuylkill," but the heads of regional film offices nationwide would kill to be in Philadelphia right now. At a time when other cities are desperate to attract any kind of movie work, M. Night Shyamalan's thriller Signs - set and shot in Bucks County - opened Friday to huge box office, bringing more attention to the area's already-thriving filmmaking industry. Revenues from local production this year are expected to exceed 2001's record of $108 million by as much as $10 million.
October 30, 1991 |
The Democrats running for Montgomery County commissioner have kicked off an unusual, tough-talking radio campaign blasting their Republican opponents as "party hacks" who "don't give two hoots" about how to efficiently run the county government. Democrats Joseph M. Hoeffel and James W. Maza said the campaign was pouring its money until Nov. 5 into running the two 60-second advertisements, an extraordinary step for the generally impoverished Montgomery County Democrats. In one ad, the announcer says the GOP candidates, Jon D. Fox and Mario Mele, engaged in an "embarrassing" primary fight to oust incumbents Paul B. Bartle and Floriana M. Bloss that centered on "control of patronage and legal fees and no-bid contracts and jobs . . . which faction will control their political party.
October 8, 2002 |
YOU'RE NEVER too young to party. Not if you're the 2-year-old daughter of "The Talented Mr. Ripley" star Jude Law and actress mom Sadie Frost, who was rushed to a London hospital Saturday after swallowing an Ecstasy tablet at a children's party. Frost was terrified when she spotted her little Iris chewing on the drug at London's Soho House club. Dad is in South Carolina filming "Cold Mountain. " According to London's Sun newspaper, police believe the tablet may have been discarded the previous night as the room had been used as a bar by clubgoers.
May 28, 2006 |
Three-Pointer The San Antonio Express-News last week detailed a letter sent by Spurs coach Gregg Popovich, in the heat of his team's second-round classic with the Mavericks, to the family of a soldier killed last month in Iraq who was an avid Spurs fan. Once again, we marvel at how whole a person Popovich is - after winning three championships, he still insists he had next to nothing to do with San Antonio's titles - and at how little most people...