At the dawn of a new millennium, New Times and a host of South Florida's most forward-thinking citizens have taken on a weighty responsibility: to predict the future. And it doesn't look pretty to us. The stock market will sag, dot.com technology will leave us in the slow lane, and Miami Mayor Joe Carollo will explode, showering the city with post-Elian scum and bile.
So we've decided to concentrate on what's fresh, pretty, and sweet. Actually we're kind of fresh, so let's move on to the other two. We asked a well-known chef, the leader of the county's most successful human-rights campaign, a prestigious architect, and the winner of a genius grant, among others, to tell us what Miami-Dade will look like 100 years hence. Their answers, we hope, will spur you to think a little, dream a bit, and laugh a lot.
And if that's not enough, we've scoured the county for the best hip-hop barbershop, the top topless beach, and the most appropriate restaurant for intimate conversation (think mattresses on this one). We've also dug up a mall kiosk that would have embarrassed Sigmund Freud, a local pop band that would have shamed Jack Kerouac, and an unguarded moment that clearly humiliated school spokes-nerd Henry Fraind. Indeed we have chosen more than 400 of the best things going.
Hundreds of you wrote and e-mailed us with ideas for the readers' poll and some of your ideas were downright creative. Some were weird, too. A few of you had a crush on voluble historian Paul George. Others wanted us to choose the number-one yoga teacher and laser hair-removal center. Sorry folks, maybe next year. Others stuffed the ballot box. We disqualified those votes.
But enough about yesterday. Read on. Think ahead. Enjoy.