Entries Tagged as ''

religion & philosophytelevision

Lost in myth: Choosing to sacrifice for the sake of the island

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 At the end of my last column, I asked whether the “variable” would prove to be an event that could change everything. The one thing that could have a domino effect on the outcomes of every event that followed. I wondered if this changeable event is what Ben and Widmore have been fighting for control of. After watching “The Variable,” I have to say “yes,” this is what the term is referring to. However, I’m still not so sure whether the variable will actually vary anything according to the mythology of the show.

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books & writingon thrillers and crime

On crime & thrillers: Howard Hunt and Hard Case Crime

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In my first column here I noted that as a teenager in the 1960s I devoured crime fiction and thrillers. I bought hardbacks from the book clubs and I purchased a good number of paperbacks books.

I recall a second-hand bookstore where I picked up scores of vintage pulp paperbacks dating back to the 1940s and 1950s. With their lurid covers depicting guns, gore and girls, the novel’s atmosphere was established well before you turned to page one. [Read more →]

family & parentingKelly Conaboy saves the world

How to talk to your kids about swine flu

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When you’re a parent, life seems only to be an endless line of “how do I tell my kids about this” and “how do I make my kid’s life better” and “when is it all going to end.” With the recent outbreak of swine flu, I’m sure many of you out there are wondering how to answer some of your children’s important swine flu related questions, like “why are you wearing that mask” and “why can’t we go to Mexico anymore” and “how will daddy get his medicine.” I know it can be stressful, so I’ve put together a few tips on how to break the news and help keep your kids safe. [Read more →]


Man of the moment: Mike Tyson

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As the fascinating new documentary Tyson reminds us, Iron Mike refuses to have a happy ending. He earned 100 million dollars…and squandered 100 million dollars…and earned another 100 million dollars…and wasted it again. (When he complains about Don King stealing tens of millions from him, one sympathizes but can’t help thinking, “So with your spending habits and general knack for shrewd decision making, that would have kept you out of the red for, what, another month?”) He keenly understands his mistakes, but keeps making them. [Read more →]

Fred's dreams

Avant Garde

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April 19, 2009
I dream I am watching an avant garde production of Fiddler on the Roof. The leading role of Tevye, played by an actor who resembles Santa Claus, is an out gay man who is having affairs with various characters. Furthermore, he wears a turban and no shirt, so obviously the characters are not Jewish. This production, set in the Middle East, contradicts every aspect of the original. [Read more →]

Gail sees a moviemovies

Gail sees a movie: Sunshine Cleaning

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 Megan Holley heard a story on NPR about two women who started a crime scene cleaning business. By the time Holley arrived at work, she knew this story had to be a movie, and wrote her first screenplay. After winning a local screenwriting contest, she earned a trip to Sundance and a movie deal. Some political pundits say that the public’s optimism and hope during these bleak economic times may actually lead to better economic times. Fortunately for all of us, optimism and hope paved the way to a new career for Holley, and for Sunshine Cleaning’s lead character Rose Lorkowski (Amy Adams). [Read more →]

recipes & food

Easy weeknight dinners: How to roast a chicken

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This is a foolproof guide to the best roasted chicken you’ve ever made. Go out and buy the best whole chicken you can afford (yes! it really does make a difference), then:

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books & writingpolitics & government

Lisa reads: The Obama Revolution by Alan Kennedy-Shaffer

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My bookshelves are not terribly political. A biography or two, a bit of humor about our political system, but not much else — I figure it’s bad enough I have to see politicians on the news every day, I have no desire to read about them in my leisure time. I accepted The Obama Revolution for review primarily because it came out so close on the heels of the November elections. I thought it would be more interesting to read about a very recent election, one I was very excited about, than to rehash a political contest I barely remembered.  For the most part, I was right. [Read more →]

art & entertainmentthat's what he said, by Frank Wilson

The wondrous all and nothing

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The mind often works better on its own, without any prodding or guidance from us. Think of all those ideas that just occurred to you out of the blue, or that problem you solved upon waking up one morning after giving up on it the night before and going to bed.

I was reminded of this recently when my wife and I went to see the exhibition of late still lifes and interiors by Pierre Bonnard at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. [Read more →]


Lauren likes TV: 30 Rocks!

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30 Rock (Thursday, NBC, 9:30PM) — I can’t comment on Thursday’s episode of 30 Rock. That’s because I didn’t watch it. I am ashamed to say I just starting watching 30 Rock (Netflixed season 1). When 30 Rock premiered, there was another, supposed-to-be similar show about sketch comedy also premiering called Studio 60 On The Sunset Strip that I stupidly chose over 30 Rock (a chance to see Matthew Perry on my TV every week? I took it). Not to say Studio 60 wasn’t awesome, because it was. But it died a slow death and is now in cancellation heaven (BTW, these two shows are so completely different, I don’t know why they were ever compared to each other to begin with). [Read more →]

books & writing

Now read this! Carson McCullers’ Reflections in a Golden Eye

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A few weeks ago I recommended Carson McCullers’ stunning novella The Ballad of the Sad Café. Since then I’ve read her short novel Reflections in a Golden Eye, which is now my new favorite of her works. Like Ballad, Reflections is concerned with the grotesque, but while in the former work the main characters are physically grotesque, in the latter each of the six main characters is psychologically grotesque, each one a twisted character. [Read more →]

politics & governmentterror & war

Mia Farrow is on hunger strike. Who cares?

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Today, the actress Mia Farrow will begin a 3-week-long water-only fast to show her solidarity with the people of Darfur and to express her outrage at the lack of action the world’s leaders have taken to halt the bloodshed in that devastated region of Sudan.

While I admire Ms. Farrow’s courage at taking such a stand for something she believes in, I can’t help but wonder if it will make a difference. Will anyone care? [Read more →]

Bob Sullivan's top ten everythingmoney

Top ten ways General Motors plans to cut costs

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10. Car radios are being replaced by old cell phones with ten different ringtones

9. No more lunch breaks for their assembly line robots

8. They’re just sticking a GM frame on top of a Tata Nano

7. Car goes from zero to sixty in a day and a half

6. Instead of brakes, it’s an anchor and a rope

5. All Saturns are being downgraded to Plutos

4. The seatbelts are duct tape

3. For their multi-million-dollar bonuses, top executives will get only 99 cents on the dollar

2. In an emergency, your air bag has to be blown up by mouth

1. Your warranty extends until you get the car off the lot


Bad sports, good sports: hot dogs and pizza or fish and chips?

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I try to be as worldly as I can be. Not sure I hit the mark very often, but I try to notice my provincial tendencies so that I can avoid sounding like a rube. That said, there are some things that should just remain American. This week, I read that the NFL has had discussions about holding the Super Bowl in London sometime in the next five to ten years. What a ridiculously bad idea. [Read more →]

family & parentinghis & hers

On the necessary conversation on gay marriage

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As my first post here, I thought I would address a theme which I regularly consider on GayPatriot where I first started blogging. In reviewing my past posts on the topic, I found a few common themes emerged. I regularly faulted those gay marriage advocates who prefer substituting name-calling to serious discussion and urged said advocates to follow the lead of Jonathan Rauch, author of  Gay Marriage: Why It Is Good for Gays, Good for Straights, and Good for America, who has made careful arguments for the social change which state recognition of gay marriage represents. [Read more →]

art & entertainment

Burlesque shows: A welcome throwback

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Last night I attended a performance of the Wasabassco Traveling Burlesque Revue & Medicine Show. Having never attended a burlesque performance before, I was ill-prepared for the amount of lascivious fun to be had.  In a refreshing departure from the inorganic extremities that modern pornography perpetuates, the women featured — Anita Cupcake; Nasty Canasta; and GiGi La Femme — represented both the beauties and imperfections of the female figure in an unabashed celebration of innuendo, entertainment, and a past time when staring at a naked woman on stage chiseled buoyant smiles on the faces of audience members. [Read more →]

animalsenvironment & nature

Take a moment, look out the window

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There’s so much despairing talk about the environment and the ongoing diminishment of nature these days, I want to take a few minutes to glory in what we still have — in particular, our bird life. It’s a glorious spring day in Indiana and our three crab trees are in bloom. As we’ve been feeding birds for 25 years in our backyard, my wife and I enjoy the same visitors every year at this time. [Read more →]


Railing against the average: notes from a soul-sucking commute

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Author’s note: For 10 months I traveled to work in New York City from my home in southeastern Connecticut. Notice I used the word “traveled” and not “commuted.” The difference, to me, is mileage and duration. My daily “commute” was three hours each way, including a 45-minute drive, an hour-and-40-minute train ride, and subway rides across and uptown. Occasionally, I took notes on the people sitting around me on the train. What follows are two of several stream-of-consciousness entries I made in an untitled journal.

Monday, June 23, 2008

I want to attack the man sitting across from me. [Read more →]

his & hersterror & war

Your iPod’s connection to the worst sexual violence in the world

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The Democratic Republic of Congo has been called the most dangerous place in the world to be a woman or girl. (John Prendergast) The weapon of choice in this African country is not a gun or machete; it is mass rape and sexual assault. Hundreds of thousands of women have reported being attacked, and who knows the true number, as the stigma that goes with rape causes untold numbers not to report it. [Read more →]


Cinema this week: The greatest director of all time

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Who is the greatest director of all time? Coppola? Spielberg? Scorcese? Chaplin? Fellini? Ford? The question may be as subjective as “what is the greatest movie of all time?”, but I submit for your approval… Akira Kurosawa. Why Kurosawa and not Orson Welles or Alfred Hitchcock? Because Kurosawa was able to do more with less! [Read more →]

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