The Coldest Winter, etc.

I went to San Francisco last weekend. I drove there. I wanted to take the train, which is much more civilized, but it’s kind of expensive, and it’s just not that convenient, so I drove. I left Nevada City at 9 p.m. and arrived just before midnight. After the hot, slightly smoky air in the foothills the cool gray dampness of the Bay Area in the summertime felt heavenly. I paid the Bay Bridge toll collector in dimes and quarters, and it was only $4. I thought of all the time I’d spent scouring my bedroom for that last dollar and how I’d never get it back. READ MORE

Anger Problems and The Trivia Superteam

A couple of days ago I started trying out this thing, vaguely related to my yoga practice, wherein I am basically supposed to “speak softly or medium-soft” for 40 consecutive days. There are a lot of ways to interpret this directive, which I like to think was translated from Gurmukhi and originally said something like, “Try not to spend all your time just going off on shit.” READ MORE

A (Spoiler-Free) Interview With All I Love and Know Author Judith Frank

Judith Frank teaches English at Amherst College and is the author of All I Love and Know, now out with Harper Collins. We talked recently. READ MORE

Relax. You're in Los Angeles.

Last Wednesday I watched a World Cup game—I have no memory of who played—at a mediocre barbecue place in Grass Valley. My friends left at the half, and I was just sitting there by myself, floating in the air conditioning. I thought about watching the second half of the game myself and then decided that would be too boring. READ MORE


When I woke up this morning to see that a friend of mine had sent me Tom Junod’s essay, "In Praise of 42 Year Old Women," I felt a lot of things. First of all, I felt happy. I mean, I had been following Junod’s career for many years, and so I've watched him begin so many articles with the word “You.” And this piece began with “Let’s face it,” which was obviously progress. So yeah, I felt good, the kind of good you feel when you see a kid who always walks in Little League get a hit, or when your dog is choking on a piece of rawhide and then just suddenly stops. Except with a dog you were thinking you might have to reach down its throat at some point, and I have never gotten to the point where I thought about reaching down Junod’s throat to extract something other than the pronoun "you." And now, I don’t have to! READ MORE

What Really Happens at the River

We were paddling around in this nice clear pool. It was peaceful and calm and other than us there were only two dudes, somewhere in between the genre of local grower types but possibly Oakland hipsters, swimming around. Then their two pit bulls jumped in. They looked like nice enough pit bulls but they seemed to be getting rather close to us and their paws—which probably each weighed about three pounds—churned the green water like turbines. We gave the pit bulls wary smiles even though pit bulls don’t understand wary smiles. READ MORE

A Swim in Scotts Flat Lake

I went swimming in Scotts Flat Lake for the first time this year on Saturday. I went because it was hot and also because I had a horrible hangover and swimming used to really knock out a hangover for me. READ MORE

A Few Questions About Jill Abramson, From David Brooks For David Brooks By David Brooks

I find myself alternately fascinated, humbled, and engaged by the recent dismissal of Jill Abramson as the editor of this newspaper. Full disclosure: I am a columnist for the New York Times. Put another way: The words you are reading are appearing in the paper that Ms. Abramson, until around noon Wednesday, helmed. READ MORE

The TMZ Style Guide

1. HEADLINES: Font size in headlines should be completely arbitrary. Sometimes the name is emphasized (JAY Z) sometimes the event is emphasized (SUFFERS SEIZURE AT REHAB) sometimes a random phrase (MERCIFUL JUDGE) is emphasized. Whatever is emphasized is not as important as the fact that something is emphasized. READ MORE

Jennifer Lawrence Responds to Esquire's Concerns About Her Drinking

Yesterday, Esquire blogger Ned Hepburn penned A Letter To Jennifer Lawrence About Her Drunkenness. Read it, or not. ("You're lucky you're a total stone-cold fox with a face like a million dollars and a better rack than a master carpenter.") It fits into a wonderful Esquire tradition of I have no idea. Anyway, we did not like this letter, and we do not like this tradition, and we are so pleased that Jennifer Lawrence chose to write back to her critic. READ MORE