Apr 12, 2011
I think the Mitford family is famous in England. In the US, where I live, they're a bit obscure. Or maybe they've just become obscure, I don't know. It's too bad because Jessica Mitford is one of...
Mar 23, 2011
In May of 2005, Ariel Gore’s friend Allison Crews sent Ariel an e-mail asking her to be Allison’s mentor. She agreed to Allison’s request, but the two were not able to get together for the mentorship to begin. One month after she sent the e-mail, Allison had a seizure and passed away at the age of twenty-three. How to Become a Famous Writer Before You’re Dead was born from these sad...
Feb 21, 2011
Just thought I’d warn everybody in advance: this is going to be a weird one.
I have a thing for U.S. presidential history. I can’t really explain it. And as far as pimping out this affection to others, I wouldn’t even know where to begin. For starters, the concept of viewing history through the lens of Important Dead White Guys is passé for a reason. Also, I have absolutely no interest...
Jan 3, 2011
Hey, come here, I want you to meet someone. This is Lewis Thomas, and he thinks you’re pretty great.
Why? Well, first off, you’re alive. Yeah, I know that sounds either facetious or creepy, but think about it; somehow you, a thinking, reasoning animal, came into being and started walking around and expressing complex thoughts in word and action and changing the world around you. But...
Nov 30, 2010
So we’ve just had the gates open for the holiday rush. While I think people worry too much about buying presents for Christmas, I have no philosophical objection to them. In fact, I think presents themselves are the bee’s knees, both the getting and the giving. Of course, a hefty swath of our Western population is only making a list and checking it twice in the first place at this time of...
Nov 2, 2010
Roasted Sugary Rum Bacon
. Need I say more? Let me say it again: Roasted Sugary Rum Bacon
. Still with me, or have you passed out from the glory of those four beautiful words?
Oct 19, 2010
What if we could visit a woman who lived over a thousand years ago? We can’t (curse you, malfunctioning time travel equipment in my basement!), but we can get close by reading the actual personal diary of a woman who lived at the court of the Emperor of Japan a thousand years ago.
The Pillow Book of Sei Shonagon is a spontaneous, playful diary filled with visual and sensory detail. Most importantly,...
Oct 11, 2010
Favorite Thing Ever is about things that are most excellent, so I won’t go into detail about Vancouver’s local newspapers and their general lack of decently-written anything. (I took a poke at them in “The Cage” and that’s plenty.) I will say, though, that one thing that’s not in abundant supply, locally, is high-end, in-depth feature writing.
A well-written, carefully...