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11 to 20 of 94 columns
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11. understanding the zombie invasion
the popular culture of the undead
pop culture - discussion
3.23.09 : feature column!

Just when you thought it was safe to go back into the graveyard at night, it turns out there's a zombie invasion and the only thing you can think is: "Again?" Zombies are an interesting phenomenon, and not only for their keen fashion sense and their undying love of fresh brain. Whether risen from a shallow grave as a result of an ancient unholy rite, or created from the worldwide pandemic of a virus gone horribly out of control, zombies have one thing in common: they're so damned hip. Of cou...
12. the world baseball classic
you're (still) doing it wrong
sports - criticism
2.27.09 : feature column!

As it turns out, the Netherlands have a national baseball team. So do Italy and South Africa. This should come as a shock and a surprise to no one, and yet it still seems wrong, somehow. They are competing in the World Baseball Classic starting next week. Betchya didn't know. Based on numbers of television-watching fans, baseball is one of the most popular sports in the world. It is behind only soccer, cricket, field hockey, tennis, volleyball, table tennis, and every other sport that Amer...
13. the return to small town america
back to the past
pop culture - general
1.21.09 : feature column!

For a while, I was really glad that gas was up to $4.00/gallon this past summer. I was really excited at the forecast that we might see a $7.00 gallon of gas this coming summer, though that looks more unlikely now. This might make me look, up front, like a bad consumer. Or maybe an OPEC sympathizer. Or maybe I hate dinosaurs. In reality, I have an over-developed sense of loyalty to local economy. Let me explain. In my mind, here's what a $7.00 gallon of gas does: It heralds the return o...
14. the 2008 beer in review
a look at the year in suds
pop culture - general
12.22.08 : feature column!

What a year for beer. Both the business and the beverage have seen spectacular things happen in 2008, from the birth of the world's largest brewer, Anheuser-Busch InBev, to the death of Zima and one of craft beer's evangelists. Beer has watched the economy tank around it and proved itself to be recession-proof. Finally, with the holidays only days away, beer has shown that it really is for every time of year. Big Brew Stop me if you've heard this one: Q: Why is American beer like making l...
15. twitter fiction
using a first-person tool for a third-person perspective
writing - improvement
11.21.08 : feature column!

Sometimes, useful tools exist where you least expect them to. As I've been working through the process of exploring the amazing world of Web 2.0 applications, I've come to see utility in places that I would not have previously expected. The social tool that I find myself becoming increasingly impressed and attached to is Twitter. Twitter can be referred to as a micro-blog. As a Twitter user, you have 140 characters to relay your thoughts of the moment to the world. 140 characters is a lot ...
16. (you gotta) fight for your right(s)
party like it's 1789
pop culture - improvement
10.27.08 : feature column!

You! Yeah. You. In front of the computer. I'm talking to you. Writing-- whatever. Settle down. Look, we need to talk. Can we talk? Relax. We're not breaking up. Are you busy next week? Because there's this thing - you should know this by now - Tuesday? Right? Election Day. No, no. It's sort of like a holiday, except you have to skive off of work to celebrate. Like Flag Day. Here's the thing, though. Go vote. Seriously. It's important. I know, you hear that kind of...
17. the greens party
exploring the hot lettuce of politics
pop culture - criticism
9.15.08 : feature column!

The U.S. is often referred to as a melting pot -- a steamy fondue of colorful cultural mixes that, through their ubiquitous individuality, make our country strong. I disagree. I think we're more like a salad. Sort of your ordinary house salad at a roadside restaurant: mixed greens, maybe a couple of croutons, some shredded carrot, a couple of slices of red onion, one whole cherry tomato, dressing on the side in a little plastic cup with "SOLO" printed on the lid. I'm not alone. T...
18. easy street
missing life in a small town
pop culture - discussion
8.15.08 : feature column!

Just a few weeks ago, I went back to the town where I grew up. I don't have a good reason to be there anymore. My parents divorced years ago and sold the house that I would consider my childhood home. I never really had very many close friends in high school so it's not a "go hang out with the ol' crew" kind of trip. While I was briefly in town, I decided to stop by the Credit Union to close my account there. I've had a savings account at this credit union for 20 years. I put $25 in when I...
19. every step you take
the latest in stalking technology
tech - discussion
7.21.08 : feature column!

Unless you've been under a rock for the past 10 years, you've probably heard of this series of tubes called the Internet. Chances are (unless you have particularly thoughtful friends who have printed this column out, thereby rendering any of the handy links that are to follow completely useless) you're on the Internet right now. You might even be familiar with the lovely term Web 2.0. Web 2.0 is, as briefly as possible, a term to describe websites that embrace interactivity and user-generate...
20. putting the major in major league
how to make sports awesome from college on up
sports - improvement
6.23.08 : feature column!

As a resident of North Carolina and staff member at UNC, I was among the many people who were delighted at the news this past week that Ty Lawson, Wayne Ellington, and Danny Green have opted out of the NBA draft and will be returning to UNC for their senior years. It greatly increases the chance of seeing UNC in the Final Four and making a whole lot of money off of naive homers in NCAA brackets next spring. But it brings up the perennial issue surrounding college sports: Oh man, I really ho...
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re: the great american sameness

Erik, this is by far your best piece you've written! I love the descriptions along your road trip. They remind me of the many road trips I've taken from Phoenix, AZ to Seattle and back. Or last summer when we drove from Phoenix through Utah, Idaho, Wyoming, and Montana to Glacier National Park. What I like best about this piece, is that it flows so naturally. You weave your point in about "sameness" subtly with diplomacy. And your point is something EVERY person living in America needs to be more open to. I agree that the very "sameness" you speak of is killing our ability to "think" in this country. I applaud your efforts in opening up the topic for discussion.

re: google+

You are exactly right and you beat me to this point. It's missing the integration. Well done.

re: where have all the bad guys gone?

A very good perspective on why it's never easy nowadays to just pick a side & stick with it at the movies.

re: occupational profiling

It's all very confusing!

re: love a fair

Sorry I'm so late. I'm way behind with my email.

re: how the privileged get more privileges


re: how to be on the internet

This advise applies to many things, not just Internet postings. Well done.

re: how to be on the internet

Such wisdom!

re: understanding the zombie invasion


re: understanding the zombie invasion

Mucho entertaining. Time wasted/well-spend reading this.

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