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FEATURED COLUMNS

riaa 2 you 0
it's all vanilla ice's fault
by joe procopio (@jproco)
topic: music
7.1.09 • CLASSIC

Yes, I am going to rail on this again. Yes, there are more important, globally-impacting events going on in our world. Yes, Iran is the new Iraq, the economy is in the tank, and even so, Michael Jackson probably should have been the topic of this column. Or Billy Mays. But dammit, we still find ourselves mired in a bizarro universe in which record companies are hell bent on suing their customers as a primary marketing strategy (the secondary strategy being placing hit singles in Burger King c

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stay east, young man
is travel worth it?
by jael mchenry (@JaelMcHenry)
topic: general
6.4.08 • CLASSIC

The hassle of travel has gone off the charts. You know the factors in play. Four-dollar gas, plane delays, high prices, the works. Travel internationally and the inconvenience goes exponential. A weak dollar makes the price problem a crisis. And no matter where you’re going, the travel industry is scrambling to make do, which sometimes results in good deals but more often means an attempt make the same amount of money off a smaller number of people. The math is never on your side. So it seems l

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goin' commando
apparently, the balls are now free
by adam kraemer (@DryWryBred)
topic: television
5.12.08 • CLASSIC

Ah, Springtime! The time when a man's fancy turns to romance, courtship, and finally being able to see women's boobs after months of having them hidden under heavy wool coats. No, seriously, we all know by now that Springtime is the time of fertility. The whole Easter thing? Much of the Passover thing? Definitely the Cinco de Mayo thing. Beyond the historical significance of the major rites of spring, there's, well, eggs and alcohol; what better symbols of the perpetuation of the species? And,

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short, sweet
why the novel isn't the only form of fiction
by michelle von euw
topic: writing
3.9.07 • CLASSIC

“I never realized I liked short stories,” one of my students said to me this morning, “until I took this class.” I understood immediately what she meant. I teach an Introduction to Creative Writing course, the type of class which is well suited to (both the reading and writing of) short fiction, for reasons that are more practical than aesthetic. For many of my students, they’d never even imagined writing a story before (never mind giving it to 15 near-strangers, who’ll then talk about it in

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how did i get here?
it has stopped making sense
by mike julianelle
topic: humor
10.6.10 • CLASSIC

A friend of mine recently remarked that a picture of me striking the Heisman pose – with my baby standing in for the football – is strikingly similar to something one of the characters does in the soon-to-be released piece of garbage Life As You Know It. My immediate reaction was to scold my friend for seeing a movie co-starring Josh Duhamel ("Vegas"; on the arm of a frying pan) and Katherine Heigl ("Roswell"; the DVD bargain bin at Wal-Mart). Then I considered the ramifications of his comment,

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they tried to make her go to rehab
what celebrity excess reveals about society
by tracey l. kelley (@TraceyLKelley)
topic: pop culture
7.27.11 • CLASSIC

By the time this goes to press, it might be revealed that Amy Winehouse's death at age 27 was drug related. Even if it isn't a direct overdose, her history of drug abuse is well documented and sometimes, a little heart can only take so much torture before it just gives up. Literally and figuratively. I don't wish to speak ill of the dead, but I'm surprised at the rampant outpouring of woe regarding Winehouse's death. Yes, she was a talented singer/songwriter. Yes, she had stylistic flair. Yes

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10 things most don't know about martin luther king
by jason gilmore (@JasonGilmore77)
topic: news
1.14.11 • CLASSIC

Sometimes, becoming a legend can be the worst thing to happen to your mission. Since his assassination in 1968, Martin Luther King, Jr. has become deified and simplified to the point, that, for several generations, the complexity and depth of his life and commission has been neutered. Yes, okay, he did the "I Have A Dream" speech, and it was a great speech, but if that's all you really know about him, you missed the point. (And if you think that he freed the slaves, as I heard a young black kid

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think before you say cheese
because everybody is a spy
by jeffrey d. walker
topic: pop culture
9.21.09 • CLASSIC

Cell phones changed a lot of our world. This is mostly for the best, but there are drawbacks. For example, the cell phone ruined a number of movie and television plots that rely on a lack of communication in order to work. One user on Yahoo who goes by the screen name "Ello Guv" had an example that made me chuckle: had cell phones been prevalent in Madonna's 1985 film, Desperately seeking Susan, that film could have been concluded like this: Caller: "Susan... Is that You" Susan: "Yep" Caller:

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this is my last peeve, people
and y'all are stepping all over it
by maigen thomas (@Maigen)
topic: general
1.25.08 • CLASSIC

It's been a while since I've been home to Charlotte, North Carolina. Since I've been happily living in the lovely Vancouver, BC, I wouldn't say I've missed my hometown, except that almost all of my family lives here... Surprisingly, this isn't about my family. This is about all the REST of the people in ever-expanding, ever-swelling gem of a city. The people who are getting on my nerves. The first ones to go in the event that I ever got my wish and were able to blink people out of existence

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a dose of post-oscar shock from the jock
of howard stern, gabourey sidibe, and the ultimate fat crack
by alex b (@Lexistential)
topic: pop culture
3.15.10 • CLASSIC

To hear Gabourey Sidibe's name is to connect with a current Cinderella story. Anyone familiar with the critical success of the recent film Precious can't help but feel impressed at the formerly unknown Sidibe's first-ever movie performance resulting in a Best Actress Academy Award nomination. That is, anyone except Howard Stern. The shock jock lambasted Sidibe's physical size on his satellite show, saying: "There's the most enormous, fat black chick I've ever seen. She is enormous. Everyone'

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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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oktoberfest
a primer
by erik lars myers (@TopFermented)
topic: pop culture
9.23.09 • CLASSIC

This past Saturday marked the beginning of Oktoberfest 2009. For the next 2-ish weeks, it'll be nothing but polka, sausages, and tasty, tasty Oktoberfest beer, no matter where you turn. What's that I hear you say? It's only September? Why so it is! It so happens that Oktoberfest begins in September and didn't even originally involve binge drinking. A quick dive into history The first Oktoberfest wasn't a beer festival at all. It was a commemoration of the wedding of Crown Prince Ludwig

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a diamond in the rough
the rules of engagement
by heather m. millen
topic: general
4.27.07 • CLASSIC

When I announced my engagement in September of 2006, I had many visions of what the following year would entail. What I pictured was an endless year of one champagne-drenched celebration after another, all held in my honor. Red carpets rolled out at any available opportunity! And, heck, I didn't even necessarily need parties thrown for me, I'd create them wherever I went, celebrating the engagement until it was no more. I'd have to invest in a tractor trailer to haul all of my fabulous new p

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here comes the judge
meet me at baggage claim
by jeff miller (@jmillerboston)
topic: general
12.11.06 • CLASSIC

For many years I've believed that, at their core, most people are stupid, and in many cases, unreliable and bad for me to be around. I know I'm not alone in this. All around me I hear one person or another complaining about someone else who is so obtusely, squarely, miserably useless that they should be employed only in the service of paperweight, doorstop, or, at best, an observer of their own navel. But maybe I've been wrong. Maybe at their core, people are good. Maybe the girl I work with

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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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