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the facial divide
5 reasons why we change our appearance
by joe procopio (@jproco)
topic: pop culture
1.3.11 • CLASSIC

Late in the fall I grew a beard. But not just any beard -- the sexiest, angriest, swarthiest beard that ever dared cover the chin of any man. I didn't even so much grow it. I just wasn't paying attention, and before I knew it, the beard happened. By force. But look, I'm not going to insult you by pretending for more than four sentences that you will read 1000 words about my beard. And furthermore, it would take that long to even explain the awesomeness. The reason I'm writing all

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that ends well
best and worst tv series finales of the 2000s
by jael mchenry (@JaelMcHenry)
topic: television
5.5.10 • CLASSIC

A discussion of best TV series finales always turns to the whiplash classics, the ones that change everything that came before. "St. Elsewhere", for example, or "Newhart." ("It was all a dream!") A discussion of the worst ones always turns, well, to "Seinfeld." Welcome to the month of May, when we're bound to see new examples of both, the worst and the best. Expectations are riding especially high this year with the upcoming series finale of "Lost", a show that has always had a history of answ

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the shore thing
losing a house; gaining a hand lamp
by adam kraemer (@DryWryBred)
topic: general
1.9.12 • CLASSIC

It’s January! It’s cold! It’s warming up this week because Al Gore said it would!

Okay, I’ll admit I did not see, “An Inconvenient Truth.” Largely because I already believed that climate change was a real thing and didn’t want to get depressed at being right. It’s sort of the same reason I’ve never watched any of Michael Moore’s films: I already know that people, especially the Republican leadership, can be real asshats. I don’t need a liberal asshat to tell me that conservative asshats are asshats.

(Asshat. Asshat.)

Now that that’s out of the way, Happy New Year! Let’s hope this one’s better than the last. Though, admittedly, 2011 had a lot going for it over 2010. I got new glasses, for example.


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baby without the maybe
awake in the present moment of pregnancy
by michelle von euw
topic: general
7.12.10 • CLASSIC

I won’t be pregnant forever. This thought turns itself over in my head as I lie awake at some way too early hour, experiencing the insomnia that has been yet another symptom to add to a growing list. As the months ahead of me that have been carefully measured turn to weeks, to days, what this statement means has changed significantly, too. At first, it was a forbidden thought: I was so terrified during my first trimester, so scared that something would go wrong, that I barely allowed myself t

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this changes everything
the apple of my eye
by mike julianelle
topic: humor
11.5.10 • CLASSIC

I had no idea it would be this complicated. I know, I know: I signed up for this, I should have known what I was getting into. Hell, I'd even done the research, reading up online, getting friends opinions, interacting with different kinds just to see how it felt. But when it's yours, it's a brand new ballgame. For years I railed against them. I'm older now. Things have changed. I've changed. And when it came time to take it home, I was not even close to prepared for it. I’d heard from friends

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kids need to read
a progressive nonprofit inspiring imagination
by tracey l. kelley (@TraceyLKelley)
topic: news
10.27.11 • CLASSIC

The next time you pick up a book to read, hold on to that feeling of anticipation for a moment.

Then imagine what it would be like to not experience that sensation. Close your eyes to the characters who speak to you, make you cry, force you to think. Try to forget the story that leaves you with a "book hangover" the next day because you stayed up much too late into the night to finish it. Ignore the destinations you've visited, cultures you've explored, theories you've tested.

With one click, you know you can order any book you want. Children should also have such easy access to books. Unfortunately, some don't.

The charitable organization Kids Need to Read (KNTR) opens up a world of endless possibilities to children through literacy. Founded by author PJ Haarsma, actor Nathan Fillion, and executive director Denise Gary, KNTR provides children with books through school and community programs. In this extensive interview, Gary details why the demand is so great, how the program works, and the many ways we can help.

read on



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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picking a spouse
three steps to avoiding divorce
by jeffrey d. walker
topic: writing
9.15.10 • CLASSIC

I am now five years and a few months married. And I was pretty deliberate about deciding whom I would settle down with. I lived with Amanda for about four years before we got married, which followed a practice of living with every girl I seriously dated, and not counting ladies who never made it to live-in girlfriend status. There were quite a few. I was even more deliberate before writing this piece on marriage, which, incidentally, was something the wife wanted me to write after like two mo

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you and your heart
lessons to learn in love
by maigen thomas (@Maigen)
topic: pop culture
10.22.10 • CLASSIC

“This is how it works. You’re young until you’re not. You love until you don’t. You try until you can’t. You laugh until you cry. You cry until you laugh. And everyone must breathe until their dying breath.” --Regina Spektor “Women love Jack Johnson’s music.” I didn’t say it, but a guy I know did, and when I took a moment to reflect that it shouldn’t hurt my feelings to be lumped in with other women (there are SOME cool women out there I don’t mind being lumped in with, but we all k

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memoirs of a sober addict
a cautionary cocaine tale
by alex b (@Lexistential)
topic: general
1.18.10 • CLASSIC

White lines. Colombian marching powder. Nose candy. Devil dust. Blow. You've heard all the names for it, the whole reason why Tony Montana was cranked enough to tell people to say hello to his little friend. Just about everywhere, there's a cocaine culture. In New York, you really got to know it. But you weren't originally introduced to it in the Big Apple; a few years ago overseas, you remember your first line. Even now, you can still picture it perfectly cut from the ID card with the currenc

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loving
a part of our speech
by sarah ficke (@DameMystery)
topic: news
4.16.12 • CLASSIC

Loving: Noun
Loving begins as a noun, but not just any noun. Loving is a personal noun; it is something we experience only through the prism of ourselves. We can’t point to the source of love, diagram its location, or dissect it from our body, and yet it is there. Loving is also a noun in the stricter sense: Richard Loving, a white man born in Caroline County, Virginia, in 1933.

Loving: Verb
Loving may begin as a noun, but we know it best as a verb. We recognize love only because we see it in action: caring, sharing, laughing, kissing, touching, soothing, healing, helping, grieving. These actions can shape our lives, yet we can’t trace them to a source. Love – of nature, of creatures, of music – is a mystery in the abstract, but vibrant in reality. Something happens in your spirit, your physical heart might thump, your nerves might jitter, and suddenly that potential for love comes out into the open. That kind of spark caught Richard Loving (noun: white) and Mildred Jeter (noun: black) and whirled them into action. They were loving each other, and – as it always does – that love was shaping their lives.

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why i blog
an instrospective about why i write on the online
by erik lars myers (@TopFermented)
topic: writing
10.17.11 • CLASSIC

This past week I published a piece on my blog Top Fermented that garnered a fair amount of attention, both positive and negative. I expected a backlash. I knew that many would disagree with me, but I was happy to see that many people also agreed, and equally as happy to see that some who disagreed took the time to reasonably state their cases against mine.

It's honestly made me wonder - why the hell do I bother?

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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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RECENT COMMENTS

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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...

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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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