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FEATURED COLUMNS

death of an icon
purgatory and the mobile lifestyle
by joe procopio (@jproco)
topic: tech
5.3.10 • CLASSIC

You know a column is going to be GREAT when it starts out with apologies. Disclaimer #1: No one died. I'm sorry for exposing you to the sloppy practice of luring you in with an out-of-context title. I know that if you were on Google searching for an edge in Celebrity Death Bingo and have now wasted up to 20 seconds of your life reading an article on what you thought was a website called Intrepid Medical, you're probably all cheesed at my sleight of hand. No, we don't do that here, we're total

read on



five great things about bad first drafts
why writing fast makes you write better
by jael mchenry (@JaelMcHenry)
topic: writing
11.4.11 • CLASSIC

Writers work in all sorts of ways, which is why you hear a lot of conflicting advice about how best to write. There are morning and evening writers, writers who need to put something down every single day, writers who plan and writers who don't.

But in November, you'll find a huge number of writers who all write the same way: as fast as humanly possible.

read on



somebody say ih-hih-ih-hih-ih
it's not all moonlight and midnight lakes
by adam kraemer (@DryWryBred)
topic: news
6.9.10 • CLASSIC

There are days that I wish I did more work for charity. But I don't. It's not for lack of caring for my fellow man. I'm not a Republican. In fact, I truly respect people who give of themselves, either donating their time or their money to the cause of helping others. Some causes are more important, in my mind, of course. The guy who works at the soup kitchen definitely gets more props than the guy who teaches the handicapped how to yodel. My friend Loni running the marathon to support our troo

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ticket to ride
how ticket pricing trends are hurting fans
by michelle von euw
topic: sports
9.9.09 • CLASSIC

It’s a gorgeous Labor Day weekend, and the weather is pitch perfect. The famous humidity that usually characterizes this time of year has been all but absent from the weather forecast, and there’s a light breeze that makes the low 80s temperatures ideal for soaking up a ballgame. But there’s practically no one in Camden Yards today, despite a mid-afternoon matchup between the Orioles and the Wild-Card chasing Texas Rangers. Every time the camera pans back, the screen is filled with green empt

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oh, great. expectations.
take it down a notch
by mike julianelle
topic: humor
9.6.10 • CLASSIC

[Preemptive disclaimer: Calm down, everyone. This column isn't about babies.] Expectations are a bitch. About two weeks ago, my wife and I went to the doctor to check on the progress of our fetus. He’s not due to be born for another week or so, but on this day – still three weeks before the scheduled due date – our doctor decided to whip my wife into a frenzy by announcing that labor might very well happen that coming weekend. Here we are, two weeks later, and nothing; Not a Cabbage Patch D

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don't dare spotlight the dark corners
what the glaring focus of political satire can reveal
by tracey l. kelley (@TraceyLKelley)
topic: news
11.28.11 • CLASSIC

I am no fan of Republican presidential candidate Rep. Michele Bachmann's perspective or posturing. My personal opinion is she appears to be an individual with myopic, bigoted views and sketchy credentials who adds quicksand to the current political quagmire. But Bachmann hasn't done anything to me directly. Nor am I a political satirist. Thus, if I met her at a rally or fundraiser, or interviewed her for this column, I would treat her with the common decency one human being extends to another.

The hoopla surrounding Bachmann's recent appearance on "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon" is an interesting study of the trials of a public figure. Bachmann is willing to do everything she has to in order to gain publicity for her book, her candidacy, and her various interests. There's a certain aspect of give and take celebrities or politicos have to put up with if they want such attention.


read on



diamond rock
a childhood rock band conquers the world... er, the block
by jason gilmore (@JasonGilmore77)
topic: music
11.16.09 • CLASSIC

Music has always been a major part of my life. Thanks to MTV and BET, the 1980s were vibrant: I was as likely to be influenced by the glossy new wave funk of Duran Duran as by the earthy raps of Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five. It was about a feeling, an impulse, finding a new means of self-expression. It was a time of blind optimism. And though I was gifted in many ways as a child, it was sometimes difficult to distinguish my strengths from my weaknesses. So when I decided, at the age of

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we got five years, what a surprise
rocko dorsey ends; or, why parting is such sweet sorrow
by jeffrey d. walker
topic: music
11.15.10 • CLASSIC

When Rocko and Dave told me they were moving to Nashville, I knew it would be hard. I wished them the best of luck, of course; but knowing I was not going to follow meant that my stint as the bass player for Rocko Dorsey was over. Since their announcement, through our last show in September, and up to their departure last week, I've crossed a wave of emotions. In Shakespeare's, "Romeo and Juliet", Juliet describes parting from Romeo as "such sweet sorrow." This phrase succinctly captures the

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i am really good at being shocking
but shockingly bad at just being
by maigen thomas (@Maigen)
topic: pop culture
1.23.12 • CLASSIC

So I'm a girl, right?

Right.

As a female, there's a general understanding that we don't require pick up lines to meet men or get a date. The joke is something like all you have to do is say “Hi.” While this may be accurate to a very large degree, I wouldn't say this is totally true. Friends of mine say that's not the case at all, but some of those people have spent an evening with me at bars near Times Square during Fleet Week, shooting fish in a barrel. I mean, flirting with military boys on shore passes. Same thing.

But me? Well, I don't exactly have a problem meeting people. I never have. I'm fairly outgoing; I have no trouble striking up conversations with strangers, and I seem to have a personality that helps make other people laugh and feel comfortable pretty quickly. I like being social, telling stories and impressing people. Just saying "Hi" isn't really my style, though. It doesn't always reflect well on who I might actually be on the inside, but if I want attention, I'll get it.

read on



it's a question of pride
weighing in on gay love, marriage, and california
by alex b (@Lexistential)
topic: news
6.15.09 • CLASSIC

The average New York City cop hanging out in Queens is a straight, simple man. He's all right with an action movie, doesn't drink anything more sophisticated than a domestic bottled beer, and is perfectly fine to just hang in with the wife, kids, or girlfriend with an easy pasta and chicken dinner. Catch him out with his buddies, and he'll probably put on a couple exaggerated airs over how he would never do anything totally gay, like karaoke sessions or salsa-dancing lessons. But, ask him whic

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they can do it! and so can you.
6 tips for successful blogging
by sarah ficke (@DameMystery)
topic: writing
8.24.09 • CLASSIC

Have you read a blog today? I don't know you (unless I do. Hi!), but I'm going to guess that you have. If fact, you might have read several. Even with the up-and-coming competition of Twitter, blogs are holding strong. The best ones are supplying readers with the news and views they used to get from newspapers or the television, and even the worst are catering to someone out there with a passion for... armadillos in socks, say, who doesn't care if said blogger knows a preposition from a peanut.

read on



a guide to guide books
on writing episodical non-fiction
by erik lars myers (@TopFermented)
topic: writing
9.21.11 • CLASSIC

Funny story. When I got this contract to write a book about North Carolina Beer and Breweries I foolishly thought that it would be a relatively easy assignment. I mean, you're talking a couple of 6x9 pages per brewery, including photos and a profile. What's that, like... 1,000 words per brewery? 1,500? How hard could that be? I can probably bang through that in a weekend.

I mean, how hard can it be to gather a little bit of fact about each place and summarize it?

It turns out this is hard work.

read on



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

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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