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2003 Stories by Joy Press

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  • Sapphic Lights

    published December 30, 2003

    A blonde woman stands in her sun-dappled bathroom staring at a plastic stick. "I'm ovulating," she says, beaming. "Let's make a baby," replies her... More >>

  • Still looking for love in all the trendiest places, the Goodbye Girls party on

    published December 30, 2003

    Most of the women I know—and quite a few men—are girding themselves for the end of Sex and the City. No other recent TV series... More >>

  • Remote Patrol

    published December 30, 2003

    THE SURREAL LIFE Sundays at 9 p.m. on the WB This tackylicious reality-TV veteran returns for a second season, featuring a... More >>

  • The Pleasure Channel

    published December 23, 2003

    Maybe someday we'll look back on 2003 as an annus horribilis for television. The year that reality shows spawned like tribbles and the president... More >>

  • Open Me

    published December 2, 2003

    Pity the poor coffee-table book. For most of the year, it sits plaintively on a bookstore shelf, waiting for the holiday season. Passersby flick... More >>

  • Working Girls

    published November 25, 2003

    Most reality series revolve around the idea of making fools out of regular folk who'll do anything to win love or money. It was only a matter of... More >>

  • My Brilliant Career

    published November 11, 2003

    Makeover shows have spread across the airwaves like a plague, constantly mutating into ever more virulent strains. But the British series... More >>

  • My Little Phony

    published November 4, 2003

    Peter Carey has a knack for hijacking history. His Booker Prize-winning True History of the Kelly Gang reimagined the life of... More >>

  • Slavic Essayist Dreams of Communism and Joan Collins

    published November 4, 2003

    Dubravka Ugresic established her intellectual street cred with The Museum of Unconditional Surrender and The Culture of Lies, two... More >>

  • Ugly Americans

    published October 28, 2003

    In this age of American isolationism, wouldn't it be nice to send some of our cultural ambassadors to mix and mingle with the rest of humankind?... More >>

  • Making the Cut

    published October 21, 2003

    A sleek woman with low-slung pigtails and a tailored skirt passes me in the hotel corridor. If she weren't encircled by a chorus of assistants, I... More >>

  • Virgin Suicide

    published October 14, 2003

    Just because a show has pretensions to Shakespearean drama doesn't mean it can live up to them. Skin swan-dives into Fox's fall lineup... More >>

  • A Tale of Two Fannys

    published October 7, 2003

    Fanny is the portrait of two ladies erased by history. In 1829, Frances "Fanny" Wright was the most controversial woman in America: the... More >>

  • Colson Whitehead Contemplates the Zizmorian Mysteries

    published October 7, 2003

    No matter how long you have been here, you are a New Yorker the first time you say, That used to be Munsey's, or That used to be the Tic Toc... More >>

  • Revamping It Up

    published September 30, 2003

    Can you remember what it feels like to fall in love for the first time? With a TV show, that is. Unlike movies, which last three hours at most,... More >>

  • Don't Look Back

    published September 23, 2003

    The subtext of every Joan Didion essay is Joan Didion: This much we know already. As she wrote in Slouching Toward Bethlehem: "However... More >>

  • Heavy Duty

    published September 23, 2003

    Chick lit, dick lit, buppy lit, mommy lit. Thanks to this "First Fat Fiction Anthology," we can now add "chub lit" to the growing list of niche... More >>

  • Our Way to Fall

    published September 16, 2003

    Watching a month's worth of fall TV debuts in one big gulp is an exercise in futility and masochism—and not necessarily an ideal way to... More >>

  • Brooklyn Belongs to Me

    published September 9, 2003

    Jonathan Lethem sits in a Boerum Hill café nursing a mug full of grits. We're just a few blocks from the house where he grew up, a place... More >>

  • Dorm Chasers

    published September 2, 2003

    Media pundits like to peg The Real World as the birthplace of the reality TV inferno. But after 13 seasons, it has jettisoned all remaining... More >>

  • Chronicle Of A Hate Crime

    published August 26, 2003

    Some writers spend a lifetime looking for the perfect story, but Elinor Langer's subject matter practically kicked her in the face. In 1988,... More >>

  • An Almost Charming Memoir of a Year in a London Bed-Sit

    published August 26, 2003

    Monday, 8 a.m. I am awakened by the shrill sound of the doorbell. Opening the door, I notice a foul smell in the hallway, like raw sewage mixed... More >>

  • Rich Kid, Poor Kid

    published August 19, 2003

    To O.C. or not to O.C.? That is the television critic's most pressing late-summer question. If you saw any of the commercials for... More >>

  • I Was an Asian American Fugitive

    published August 12, 2003

    So much has been written about coming of age in the wild '60s, but being a kid in the '70s was its own freaky trip, too: consciousness indelibly... More >>

  • The Shootists

    published August 5, 2003

    I didn't watch the first season of HBO's Project Greenlight, the TV series about the making of a low-budget movie. How dull would that be,... More >>

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