December 20, 1995 |
It's not too late for you to learn before the art of writing dies altogether. Here are some tips and observations from a long-time writing teacher. Write the same language you speak. If you don't say "indeed" or "thirdly," don't write it. Then eliminate words you don't need, like "of all," as in "first of all. " Write in the simplest language. You've never gotten an essay back from a teacher who criticized the smallness of your words. That's because when you use small words people are understanding you and concentrating on your message, which is all you should want.
February 4, 2010
Here is an excerpt from Craig LaBan's online chat: Craig LaBan: I've gotta love a Super Bowl with a culinary theme - I'm planning to make some of my best NOLA dishes this weekend (jambalaya, maybe a gumbo) . . . but can't do that without the proper smoked meats. I'm online ordering from Jacob's Andouille this year, chef John Besh's favorite. In the past, I've had good success with Best Stop in Lafayette, and Cajun Grocer, an excellent online source for all Louisiana products.
July 22, 2010
Here is an excerpt from Craig LaBan's online chat: Reader: I was sad to see Bebe's BBQ close in my neighborhood. That closing drove me to revisit Percy Street for the first time since December. Had a great dinner there and was especially pleased by the delicious sides: white bean salad and German potato salad. Craig LaBan: I was sad too, because he made a pretty good 'cue, mostly because of the fantastic rub. I'm not surprised though - the place was inconsistent and seemed to struggle with the basics of running a business.
May 27, 2010
Reader: Coming to Philly on June 14 for four days to see my actor son in Fiddler at Walnut Street Theatre. Any vegetarian organic restaurants of note in that area? CL: Congrats on your son's part in Fiddler on the Roof . If you're looking for straight vegetarian, the nearest one might be Horizons, an inventive and very sophisticated vegan restaurant at 7th and Bainbridge. There are other spots nearby, though, that do good vegetarian things even if the restaurant is not entirely veggie-for one, I'm thinking of Bindi, the nouveau Indian BYO at 13th and Chestnut.
October 4, 2000 |
Vice President Al Gore visited Florida last week, kissed an elderly woman on the head and touted his new campaign tome, "Medicare at the Crossroads. " The booklet outlines Gore's plan to provide prescription drug coverage to all senior citizens - "even middle-class seniors," Gore emphasized - regardless of need. I am sick of this wrinkled pandering. And I am not alone. I don't usually publicize reader mail, but my recent column about government-funded prescription drugs and the burden on younger workers elicited a response seldom reflected in the mainstream media.
May 30, 2013
This is an excerpt from Craig LaBan's online chat from May 28, 2013: Craig LaBan: It's been a good week for me, as you can see from this Crumb Tracker Quiz. Name the place I ate these dishes: (1) chu toro nigiri with tofu, ginger and chive; (2) crispy haloumi with poached figs; (3) lamb burger and fries with curry ketchup. I've got asparagus on the brain because we popped by amazing Terhune Orchards while in Princeton last weekend and found a "pick your own asparagus patch.
September 20, 2012
Here is an excerpt from Craig LaBan's online chat: Craig LaBan: After writing my fall dining preview for last Sunday's paper, I am seriously excited for what's about to land in the coming months, from glatt kosher in the burbs by the Zahav crew to three promising barbecue projects, more South Philly contenders, and a potential South Street revival thanks to Stephen Starr and his latest New York import: Peter Serpico of Momofuko Ko...
March 15, 2013
Here is an excerpt from Craig LaBan's online chat: Craig LaBan: To mark St. Paddy's Day, I had Colcannon at the Black Sheep near Rittenhouse Square . . . We can talk about other places to celebrate the holiday, as well as a number of hot topics . . . like the continued rise of ValeMar – that power couple from Midtown Village, Valerie Safran and Marcie Turney, whose 13th Street domain keeps growing. Not only are they swapping their BYO status for a liquor license at Lolita, but taking over the 13th and Locust space that previously housed Rhino Bar and Fish.
July 17, 2013
I'M WHITE. Trayvon Martin was black. George Zimmerman, a ringer for many of my immigration clients, is Latino. These should all be irrelevant factors. But of course, they're not. We kid ourselves if we truly believe that America is a melting pot that creates a benign and savory stew that nourishes the pilgrim soul in each of us. America's story has been written by different hands with different perspectives and different desires. Sometimes, on July 4 for example, we can pretend that this great land of ours is unified and impervious to fracture.
November 7, 1991 |
"Final Exit," the infamous suicide primer, is the reigning how-to book of the moment. Now in its 12th week on the New York Times best-seller list, it's a wonder any of us are left to buy the thing, unless a few cheapskates out there are waiting for the paperback. The success of this express checkout guide must surely have sent a big chill down the book industry's spine. If so many readers feel that bad, does that mean curtains for an entire genre - the old-fashioned self-improvement book that used to be so profitable?