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The New Yorker

The New Yorker December 16, 2019

Founded in 1925, The New Yorker publishes the best writers of its time and has received more National Magazine Awards than any other magazine, for its groundbreaking reporting, authoritative analysis, and creative inspiration. The New Yorker takes readers beyond the weekly print magazine with the web, mobile, tablet, social media, and signature events. The New Yorker is at once a classic and at the leading edge.

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in this issue

2 min.

Jiayang Fan (“The Act of Protest,” p. 38) became a staff writer in 2016. Joshua Yaffa (“Channelling Putin,” p. 22), a Moscow correspondent for the magazine, will publish “Between Two Fires: Truth, Ambition, and Compromise in Putin’s Russia” in January. Amanda Petrusich (Pop Music, p. 68) is a staff writer and the author of “Do Not Sell at Any Price: The Wild, Obsessive Hunt for the World’s Rarest 78 rpm Records.” Peter de Sève (Cover) is an illustrator and a character designer for animated movies. He has contributed more than forty covers to the magazine. Sarah Larson (The Talk of the Town, p. 20) is a staff writer. Her column, “Podcast Dept.,” appears on newyorker.com. David Biespiel (Poem, p. 64) is the poet-in-residence at Oregon State University. His books include the poetry collection “Republic Café”…

3 min.
the mail

WINE, NATURALLY Rachel Monroe, in her article about the rise of natural wine, is right that such wine has become a symbol of virtuous consumption (“On the Nose,” November 25th). But it’s not just socalled natural-wine-makers who are seeking to convey a sense of place in their wines; that’s the goal of all authentic winemakers. I recently attended SommCon, a leading wine conference in San Diego. There were offerings from Washington, Oregon, California, France, Portugal, Italy, New Zealand, and elsewhere; we learned to distinguish characteristics imbued by land, weather, winemaking practices, and the many other factors that go into crafting a bottle. The bottom line for wine drinkers is: Forget the ratings! Keep exploring, and, if you like it, it’s good. Tom GableDel Mar, Calif. Monroe correctly points out that to call a…

26 min.
goings on about town: this week

If your preferred holiday flavor is more dry Martini than eggnog, consider celebrating the season with the cabaret diva Meow Meow, who channels Ute Lemper, Édith Piaf, and other totems of jaded glamour in her mascara-heavy persona. She’s part of a neo-cabaret scene that spikes nostalgia for bygone chanteuses with the danger and urgency of performance art. (She has been known to crowd-surf.) Born Melissa Madden Gray, in Australia, she comes to BAM’s Harvey Theatre, Dec. 12-14, with “A Very Meow Meow Holiday Show.” NIGHT LIFE Musicians and night-club proprietors lead complicated lives; it’s advisable to check in advance to confirm engagements. Christian McBride Village Vanguard A nineties wunderkind who has fulfilled his early promise, the extraordinary bassist Christian McBride began as a staunch defender of mainstream jazz. His forays into such far-flung terrain as…

3 min.
tables for two: the riddler

There’s a strong argument to be made that the types of glassware in which champagne is most often served—the flute and the coupe—are exactly the wrong ones. The tall, narrow shape of a flute constricts the wine, keeping it super carbonated but preventing it from swirling around and fully releasing its aroma and flavor. You could swirl champagne in the wide, shallow bowl of a coupe, but you’d almost certainly slosh it, too; plus, it’s more likely to overaerate and lose a significant amount of its fizz. Flutes and coupes are, like champagne itself, instantly recognizable as celebratory. But what if champagne were treated more like other wines, as appropriate for an ordinary week night as for a special occasion, as perfect with a meal as for a toast? This is…

5 min.
comment: guns and 2020

On September 12th, a little more than a month after the weekend that a shooter killed twenty-two people and wounded twenty-four more at a Walmart in El Paso, Texas, and a man killed nine people and wounded seventeen outside a bar in Dayton, Ohio, there was a moment of thrilling moral clarity during the Democratic Presidential debate. The former Texas congressman Beto O’Rourke, speaking about the kind of semi-automatic weapons used in the massacres, made it clear that he stood by his proposal not only to ban such weapons but to institute a mandatory buyback of them as well. As he put it, memorably, “Hell yes, we’re going to take your AR-15!” Now O’Rourke is out of the race and the mandatory-buyback idea seems to have exited the stage with him.…

4 min.
here for the holidays: el sonero de la navidad

Fifty years ago, Mike Amadeo, a composer and musician from Puerto Rico, bought a record shop on Prospect Avenue in the South Bronx and renamed it Casa Amadeo. It’s now a mecca of Latin music and a landmark on the National Register of Historic Places. The street signs out front read “Miguel Angel (Mike) Amadeo Way,” and Amadeo himself, eighty-five, is still behind the counter, six days a week, selling CDs, LPs, musical instruments, and Boricua knickknacks. Cash only, hand-Sharpied price tags, boom box blasting the salsa monga of Víctor Manuelle, El Sonero de la Juventud. The other day, two members of the band Los Lobos, briefly in town, stopped by for a look. They’d heard some things about Amadeo, but he knew nothing of them. “They’re Mexican?” he said. “Then…