Page sixteen shows black and white photographs of topless women lined up on a stage, patiently waiting for the jury to pick the BBB’s (best big boobs) winner. Serge Gainsbourg, a cigar in his mouth, is clapping. It’s 1983. The nightclub, Cannes, is jam-packed of men with sweaty faces… and the winner is, number 17! Adina, a lovely and voluptuous brunette.
On page eighteen, a man in camouflage is holed up in a vacant building and points his machine gun to a dead body lying next to a dark trail. The magazine is called SCOOP. It was published in Beirut in the early eighties and was edited by cartoonist and photographer Stavro. He is credited in both stories; the naked breast contest and the street shooting. I picked up SCOOP for a couple of dollars at Book Bazaar – a bookstore that no longer exists – slightly startled by the proximity of images of war and sex. Today, not only do I find this pairing flat, but I also realize that sex is war’s best counterpart. Beirut exists between these two poles.