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yeah, you do it too
by joe procopio (@jproco)
topic: pop culture
6.1.11 • CLASSIC

When you waste as much time as I do staying on top of social and popular culture, there are certain trends you can't ignore, even if they do kind of stab you in the eye once in a while. For example, I recently discovered, through the painful task of reviewing the long public history of my own writing, that I was one of the first to start using the now pedestrian "Did that just happen?" (1995) and "I know. Right?" (2005). This culminated recently in the totally immature prospect of sneaking in

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worth a thousand words?
how book trailers are dancing about architecture
by jael mchenry (@JaelMcHenry)
topic: writing
5.5.08 • CLASSIC

If you can have a radio interview about painting or a print review of music, there’s no reason you can’t make a video about a book, right? Kind of. Book trailers are what the name suggests -- trailers like movie trailers, short videos intended to pique the viewer’s interest -– except instead of promoting movies, they’re promoting books. This might sound slightly unnatural. And reviewing widely available book trailers suggests that it is. Books, for the most part, consist solely of words. It’

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appelez-moi mclovin
my first night in the back of a police car
by adam kraemer (@DryWryBred)
topic: writing
2.8.10 • CLASSIC

Late in the evening at my friend Brian's wedding, I found myself making my way across the room to shake the hand of the King of the Judges. He took one look at me and laughed so hard he almost cried. I should explain. Some of you may remember that fateful December night when I found myself sans cash or card, unable to pay for the taxi that had just driven me home. You may remember that it turns out the penalty for being unable to pay for a taxi is more than one might expect. You may also reme

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required summer reading
solving the joys of the detective novel
by michelle von euw
topic: writing
8.10.09 • CLASSIC

Summer has always been the best time for reading. Perhaps because I've spent almost my entire life on a semester schedule, the months of May through August have been the ones in which books I read for pleasure take a top priority over the ones that I have to read. Asking me what genre of books I prefer is pretty much like asking me what type of fiction I write: both questions are met with an uncomfortable silence, some verbal hedging, and then usually the words "literary, but not too literar

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baby stakes
a change is gonna come
by mike julianelle
topic: humor
4.23.10 • CLASSIC

Being tired sucks. Being exhausted is worse. And being awake for 36 hours while taking a red-eye flight across the country and going straight to work is just plain hell on earth. Can anyone sleep on an airplane? Can anyone even take a nap while sitting in a middle seat, sandwiched between a late-boarding meat-head with bruised knuckles who falls asleep to “Born To Run” (really?!) and a crazy sleep-mask-wearing pregnant lady who lays her head on your shoulder the whole seven hours from Seattle t

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portrait of an artist: gayle lynds
spying on the world
by tracey l. kelley (@TraceyLKelley)
topic: writing
3.29.10 • CLASSIC

It’s no secret: award-winning author Gayle Lynds loves a little cloak and dagger. She’s even written novels under a pseudonym (but if we told you the name, we'd have to...well, you know). Millions of readers around the world follow the twists and turns of her female protagonists as they flip over the mossy rocks of international espionage. Lynds is one of few women writing this genre. In fact, when she pitched her first novel, Masquerade, in the early 1990s, one publisher rejected it, saying,

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funny people
the plight of black sketch comedy television, pre & post-chappelle's show
by jason gilmore (@JasonGilmore77)
topic: pop culture
3.12.12 • CLASSIC

Nothing has filled the void of "Chappelle’s Show", Dave Chappelle’s brilliant, edgy Comedy Central sketch show that deftly navigated American racial, political, pop cultural and sexual mores over two glorious seasons (2004-06). There has been nothing even close, and I wish studio execs would come up with a back up plan before robbing us of such a broad, accessible moment of genius. Or simply treat their talent better.

Prior to Chappelle, there was nothing to fill the void of "In Living Color". That statement is so true that Fox, desperate as usual, recently (re)hired that show’s original creator, Keenen Ivory Wayans, to reboot the show with a whole new crop of diverse, hip sketch comedians. This decision was made, of course, almost 20 years to the day that Fox made working conditions so unbearable that Wayans walked away from the show that he created from scratch.

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will 'obamacare' make your doctor quit?
or, did u.s. doctors take the hypocritical oath?
by jeffrey d. walker
topic: news
4.18.11 • CLASSIC

Reports suggest that between 40% and 45% of our nation's doctors are planning to either quit or downscale their medical practices because of "Obamacare." Of course, some reports have edged that up to 74%: I think it's funny that Fox news presented the most liberal interpretation of this story. That's irony. But despite the reports, I still don't believe it. Seriously? A legislative change is going to make 40% + of a whole workforce voluntarily quit? Few people (doctors included) can r

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you weren't born in two pieces
why are you still looking for your other half?
by maigen thomas (@Maigen)
topic: pop culture
2.24.12 • CLASSIC

It's a social construct, this idea that we aren't complete until we are part of a couple. It is an ancient concept, depending on the literature you read. When prehistoric humans were part of hunter-gatherer tribes, grouping together enabled each person to contribute their strengths and shore up their weaknesses as part of a cohesive and survival-oriented group. It wasn't until humans started living in agricultural societies, raising domesticated animals and farming, that there were recorded male-female partnerships. It has even been argued that marriage was an institution formed by the Church as a form of control. 

Regardless of the history of matrimony, it is still a widely accepted practice. Expected by most and avidly sought out by many. I've written a number of articles (and a book!) about it myself. But when you look at the divorce rate for nearly every first world country (all between 42-51%) and the hideous and brutal treatment of women and unwanted wives in other countries, it should make you wonder why we reach for the hand of a Life Partner at all. 

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do i have to have faith?
according to bill maher, it's religulous
by alex b (@Lexistential)
topic: film
10.13.08 • CLASSIC

Faith is a tricky thing. No rational thought is involved, and I'm obliged to suspend my logical abilities while unconditionally accepting anything without tangible proof. As a Catholic, that basically means anything. I'm expected to believe in virgin births, four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, and that people fluent in gibberish are actually speaking in tongues. Hmm. O-kay. Thus, like any doubting Thomas or anyone inclined to question their religious origins, I checked out Religulous. The movie

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the power to decide
why it’s necessary for women to control their birth control
by sarah ficke (@DameMystery)
topic: news
3.7.12 • CLASSIC

When Sandra Fluke stood up to testify in front of Congress on February 23rd about the importance of accessible birth control for all women, she probably didn’t expect to be called a prostitute. Women probably didn’t think that, in March of 2012, we’d be defending our right to use a medicine that was approved for sale 52 years ago. And yet, here we are again having to convince people – primarily men – that women do have the right to have sex without pregnancy.

We live in a time when men are lowering or erasing the barriers that allow them to get women pregnant (see: insurance-subsidized Viagra), while making it harder and harder for women to prevent conception. While the issue is birth control, no-one is really talking about condoms in this case. Condoms are available on supermarket shelves, they cost less to buy, and they are known to prevent STIs – a definite medical benefit. They also require the consent of a man. The real subject of the conversation is the pill: the birth control method that women control and that women can practice with or without a man’s knowledge or consent.* The question then becomes not just should women use contraception, but should women be allowed to choose contraception on their own? There are many excellent reasons why the answer is – and should always be – yes.

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how to be on the internet
your guide to not being a total douchebag
by erik lars myers (@TopFermented)
topic: writing
4.17.09 • CLASSIC

You are a creator. You spend time organizing the inner workings of your mind into detailed output for the consumption and enjoyment of others. In your dreams of success, your work is out in the world for everybody to see and appreciate. Your name is on everybody's lips and pounded out on everyone's keyboard. Harsh reality: Your work will be criticized; some people will not like it. It's a fact of life. Even the most successful people have detractors. Sometimes, they are people with leg

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constant craving
*the secret* to success
by heather m. millen
topic: humor
8.27.08 • CLASSIC

The other day I was sitting at my desk. It was about 4:00 in the afternoon, the day had been a bit stressful and I was greatly in need of a tiny token of relief. Suddenly, I realized that all my soul craved was a cookie. I don't eat cookies very often but who am I to judge what my soul desires? My husband happened to call and I said aloud and with conviction: "I really want a cookie." Ask. Cookies are good. I used to make cookies with my grandmother. She made these amazing little thumbp

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longhair tv
by jeff miller (@jmillerboston)
topic: pop culture
2.24.10 • CLASSIC

My hair used to be REALLY long. Cliff Burton long. Conan the Barbarian long. Born-in-the70's-hit-puberty-in-the-80's long. There was nothing ironic or unusual about this. In my day - and at a burly 38, I feel entitled to an occasional in my day - if you were a young man who knew how to rock and roll all night and party every day, this was barely a choice at all. Growing your hair was as much a conscious decision as wearing jeans or eating fast food. It wasn't a question of should I grow it out

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re: irrussistible
I am not going to read it this time. I do and I just cannot pull myself together to comment. It is a beautiful tribute. I am very glad that you wro...

re: guns don't kill people....
Can we please find a way to heal and protect? I NEWTOWN, Conn. (AP) — A man opened fire Friday inside two classrooms at the Connecticut elementary sc...

re: a year without netflix
I would expect that and especially Netflix. Marketing, baby. They're spending zillions to get new subscribers....

re: everybody poops
What a bunch of crap! :-D Sorry. I tried to let it pass. Butt I'm weak. [edited]...

re: you are on your own heroes journey
Too short. Sigh. Thanks Maigen. I just miss him. I am glad that I can find people who cared deeply for him here. He had such good friends here!...


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