"The Grainmaker" --a profile of Dwayne Andreas, the international grain mogul who whispered in the ears of a half-dozen presidents
and too many world leaders to list here. Published in George in August 1996, and later excerpted in the magazine's "best of" issue
in 2001. It took seven months to get an interview with the publicity-shy Andreas, whose company was under investigation by the FBI
at the time for alleged price-fixing. He revealed tidbits as his role in Richard Nixon's attempt to hand-pick his Democratic opponent
in the 1972 Presidential election.
"Monkey Business"-- The twisted tale of Scientology's falling-out with its high-powered public relations firm, from Regardie's magazine,
"He's Here, He's Queer, He's Republican"-- GQ magazine published my profile of gay GOP activist Rich Tafel in 1994. The magazine's
fact-checkers,as I recall, were a bit puzzled about how to verify the virility-enhancing effects of spirulina and sleeping under a
"Tales from the Paranoia Trade"--A 1993 Washington Post Magazine piece on the murky world of electronic counter-surveillance consultants.
If you saw the Francis Ford Coppola movie "The Conversation," you'll be surprised to see that there's actually a real-life version
of the Surveillance Expo that Gene Hackman visits at the beginning of the flick. Of course, the gadgetry I describe
is like Stone Age stuff compared to what the NSA can do now.
"Catcher in the Wry"--this profile of novelist Michael Chabon ("Mysteries of Pittsburgh," "Wonder Boys," "The Amazing Adventures of
Kavalier and Clay," etc.) ran in Orange Coast magazine in 1995.
"The Wild One"--A profile of turncoat Republican senator, Native American artist, judo champ and motorcycle enthusiast Ben Nighthorse
Campbell. It appeared in the first issue of George magazine in 1995.
"Attack Flack"--A profile of crisis-P.R. man Eric Dezinall. Published in Regardie's Power, January 2000.
"A Story Without An Ending"--A profile of crime novelist James Ellroy, as he investigates the real-life murder of his mother in the
1950s. Published in Orange Coast in 1996.
"The Money Ride"--an investigative piece about the amusement park business and its dangerous dependence upon increasingly bigger,
faster roller coasters. Published in Philadelphia magazine in 1997.
"Free Fall"--the strange tale of a former U.S. attorney and securities regulator who went over to the dark side, aiding the conmen
he once had prosecuted. Appeared in Regardie's Power, January 2001.
"Living Ever Larger"--a look at supersized food, cars, houses and Americans, and the consequences for us all. From the Los Angeles
Times Magazine, June 9, 2002.
"Selling Sizzle"-- the art and science of creating new cars in LA's design studios. From the Los Angeles Times Magazine, September
"The Grand March of an American Misfit." A profile of scientist and explorer Michael Fay, who abandoned southern California to
roam across a swath of African jungle that was devoid of human habitation. Los Angeles Times Magazine, January
"Whither the SUV?"-- A look at the sudden decline of the Hummer and other monster sport-utility vehicles. Los Angeles Times
Magazine, August 28, 2005.
"Lord of the Ring" -- A profile of real estate developer turned boxing impressario Barry Linde. Regardie's, September-October, 2004.
"The New Family Feud" -- Grandparents who sue their own kids for visitation rights to grandchildren. Good Housekeeping, February 2000.
"Risky Business" -- An investigation of how teenagers were losing their lives in workplace accidents and crimes, due to lax enforcement
of labor laws. Good Housekeeping, April 2000.
"Nixon: The Comeback"-- Tricky Dick's unlikely resurgence, in a spate of films, books and a surprisingly unvarnished Presidential
library and museum in Yorba Linda. Orange Coast magazine, July 2008.
"Stem Cell Rock Star" -- A profile of Dr. Hans Keirstead, the University of California--Irvine researcher who startled the world by
enablng paralyzed rats to walk--and aims to someday do the same for humans. Orange Coast, August 2010.
"Unforgettable" -- A profile of controversial memory researcher Elizabeth Loftus, who's appeared as a witness in scores of high-profile
criminal trials. Orange Coast, November 2010.
"Rebecca Black, Revolutionary"-- My profile of a 14-year-old California girl who became an accidental YouTube superstar, whose
music video "Friday," racked up more than 160 million views, after Comedy Central's Daniel Tosh made fun of it. Orange
Coast, August 2011.
"A Slaughter, Reimagined"-- In the age of Twitter and YouTube, a mass shooting in southern California quickly morphed into a
variety of memes that bore little resemblance to the actual crime. Orange Coast, June 2012.
Queen" -- My 2014 Orange Coast profile of Lynsi Snyder, heiress to a billion-dollar West Coast burger empire, who seldom
gives interviews. It contained a number of revelations, including two instances in which she escaped kidnappers, and was featured
in Business Insider.
"Rebuilding By Design:The Art of Resilience" -- I wrote this 2014 piece for Urban Land magazine about an architectural competition
aimed at developing innovative ways to protect the New York metropolitan area against climate change and another Hurricane Sandy-like
"Want to Move Off the Grid? Here's How It's Done" -- Huffington Post republished up this piece on off-grid
survivalism that I wrote for National Geographic Channel's website. They didn't pay me, but they did run a picture of me with
my basset hound-pit bull Madge, which I appreciate.
"The Horse Lady Vanishes" --mix a missing heiress, a charming but oily lothario-con man, and an enigmatic, vaguely creepy butler,
and you get a mystery that took decades to resolve. From GQ.
"The Golden Age of Mediocrity,"In 1949, W. Somerset Maugham wrote an essay in which pondered whether Dostoevsky or El Greco
was the greater artistic genius. Hard to imagine how he would react to a Rolling Stone cover proclaiming “The Genius of Eminem.” Read
more meditations upon cultural grade inflation in from the Los Angeles Times Magazine.
"Why Isn't Randy Kraft Dead? In 1983, the California Highway Patrol pulled over a bland-looking Long Beach computer programmer named
Randy Kraft, who turned out to have a drugged and dying U.S. Marine in his passenger seat, and snapshots of scores of other victims
in his possession. But 30-plus years later, despite being caught in the act, one of the most prolific serial killers in U.S. history
somehow has managed to avoid execution. From Orange Coast.