With two new projects along with my usual weekly stuff for Taki’s and PJMedia — plus some movies I want to watch — there will be little to no blogging for a few days.
Being this busy naturally means that, like most writers, I’m actually goofing off for as long as possible, doing pretend “research,” i.e. slumming the web.
If you’ve ever wondered what I do when I’m not “here” (and am supposed to be working), here’s a glimpse at my recent browser history:
Speaking of sausage-making — here’s a behind the scenes shot with the armadillo wrangler, from The Baker’s personal collection:
“Tolerates the Mod girls…” Mid-point between 1964 Brighton riots and the world’s 1966 discovery of Swinging London. And, yes, there’s even a “pinball wizard.”
All part of Primitive London:
Joan Crawford’s last apartment, and her friendships with interior designers Billy Haines and Carleton Varney.
“Corpsman In Anguish” (1967), Cathy LeRoy
Vietnam was to be a photographer’s conflict. A familiar tread for many struggling artist, photographer, or bohemian was the offices of the Associated Press in Saigon, where the legendary photo editor Horst Faas held court. Among many who came to Faas in 1966 was a petite 21-year old French girl named Cathy LeRoy. Defying her factory-manager father, she worked 18 hours a day as an interviewer in a Paris employment agency to save for a one-way ticket to Saigon. She only carried $200 and a Leica M2. Faas gave her three rolls of black and white film and assurances to give her $15 for each picture used.
The U.S. Army was skeptical of LeRoy at first. She didn’t speak English (apart from four-letter words she would soon pick up from the Marines); she was 5ft, 85-pounds, comically carried cameras and equipment close to her bodyweight, and trundled around with size-6 combat boots too big for her size-4 feet. She was also soon be banned from the frontline for six months for cussing a senior officer. But she spent more time at the front — three weeks a month — than any other woman journalist in Vietnam, and a year later, she became the first accredited journalist to participate in a combat parachute jump, joining the 173rd Airborne Brigade.
LeRoy herself came very close to death two weeks later. Her Nikon barely stopped a piece of mortar shrapnel that ripped open her chest. She said that she thought the last words she would ever hear were, “I think she’s dead, sarge.”
During the Tet offensive in 1968, LeRoy was briefly captured by the North Vietnamese during the battle for Hue. LeRoy’s photos of her captivity later made the cover of Life, ‘A Remarkable Day in Hue: the Enemy Lets Me Take His Picture‘.
This is a better picture for an earlier post…
German summer camp, 1929: