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Esquire March 2018

Esquire is a funny, informative, connected magazine that covers the interests of American men—all the interests of the American man: Politics, style, advice, women, health, eating and drinking, the most interesting people of our time. All that and it’s the most-honored monthly magazine in history.

United States
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The neutrality of this information is disputed. And rightfully so. The U.S. space program (NASA) was created to explore what seemed interesting before Neil deGrasse Tyson started tweeting about it all the time. President Eisenhower founded it in 1958 with the innovation of a rocket that could be fueled solely by jealousy of the Soviet Union. The program was later expanded by President Kennedy, who challenged the country to “reach the moon before I reach Marilyn Monroe.” Naturally, the first projects, named Hubris and Icarus, were failures, but success was achieved with the Apollo program: The alleged “moon landing” of Apollo 11, in 1969, is considered the most accessible thing Stanley Kubrick ever directed. The first man to allegedly set foot on the moon, Neil Armstrong, famously grabbed his crotch with…

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a letter from the editors he said, she said

Late last year, watching the cultural wildfire that began with Harvey Weinstein and spread coast-to-coast, a group of editors from Esquire and Marie Claire found themselves sitting around a conference table to talk about the subject that has tongue-tied, confused, outraged, liberated, and shocked the entire country: sexual harassment. That first gathering might best be described as, well, a little awkward: Most of the men, having decided that silence was the best strategy, didn’t talk, while most of the women, realizing what was going on, were almost made speechless themselves. The only way forward, we agreed, was to have an honest discussion that would raise questions and attempt to answer them. This became the guiding principle of “Sex, Lies, and Human Resources,” the ten-page feature that our combined teams—led by…

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let’s get weird

Alex Garland is nervous. Not chattering-teeth nervous, but he definitely gives off an air of a man who is, shall we say, uncertain about his immediate prospects. “I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to do this again,” he says. “At some point I won’t get another chance.” The object of his uncertainty is his latest movie, Annihilation (out this month), which provides the biggest cinematic headfuck since that giant space fetus hove into view at the end of 2001: A Space Odyssey. The film follows a five-woman expedition, including Natalie Portman and the great Jennifer Jason Leigh, as they make their way through a mysterious, slowly expanding luminescent bubble covering acres of the U.S. coast referred to as Area X. Inside, communications don’t work, the flora and fauna are…

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pulp lit

The novel that became Annihilation was brought to you by FSG Originals, an imprint within Farrar, Straus and Giroux that’s gained a cult following by betting on wild, weird, and otherwise risky material. “We look for work that defies categorization somehow,” says publisher Sean McDonald, who founded FSG Originals with director Emily Bell in 2011. The books they publish—check out Frank Bill’s country gothic Crimes in Southern Indiana and Jac Jemc’s surreal horror show The Grip of It—often exist at the fringes of literary fiction and genre, and the format plays into that mass appeal: Every title is paperback and compactly sized. “We want it to feel like you could slip the book in your pocket and keep it close,” says Bell. That’s assuming you’re able to put it down.…

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recovery drink

We’ve all seen the before-and-after aerial images of last October’s Napa, Sonoma, and Mendocino fires. Idyllic neighborhoods appear on the left side of the screen, and on the right, nothing but a faint trace of asphalt roads and maybe a lone exposed skeleton of a brick chimney. The rest is ash. It’s become the unfortunate new reality throughout California. The flames raced 230 feet per minute. At least 8,400 buildings and homes were destroyed. Which means now is the right time to head to Northern California wine country, the most hallowed wine region in the United States. Hear us out. As those in New Orleans after Katrina, or Houston after Harvey, can tell you, tourism genuinely helps. “Reality is,” says Remi Cohen, general manager at Lede Family Wines in Napa Valley, “it’s…

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to chains!

People don’t believe me when I tell them that I love chain restaurants. They laugh in that way that presumes a shared sarcasm—as if I’d just said that I love Cats. But I mean it. I love chain restaurants, at least the ones that nail their core objectives. And I believe that chain restaurants have the ability, like Willie Nelson and Star Wars, to unite us. Look no further than my weekend ritual with my 12-year-old son, Toby. He and I go to IHOP, which is about as far as you can get from the foraging, fermenting, farm-to-table-ing aspirations of the culinary vanguard. (Tom Sietsema, the food critic at The Washington Post, recently gave IHOP a D in a roundup of popular chains. He did not like the burgers. To which…