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Bless Us, Every One

Guys! Marriage equality is here, just in time to get into fights about things that someone will always manage to be offended by: READ MORE

"Heartbeat," Annie

Okay, so, I just saw her new video and I...didn't like it (no! it's probably me), so here is the Annie we know and love, and here is the new one for people who aren't frightened turtles who can't accept change ("Tube Stops and Lonely Hearts").

Every Sperm Is More Sacred Than We Guessed

Every so often, you'll hear a reference to some really disturbing studies that demonstrate a sharp decline in sperm density AND quality since tests began over fifty years ago. And then, because, well, who pays that much attention to what happens to the world once we're gone, you may hastily flip past it to something about the merits of dark chocolate. But then the Utne Reader (the piece originally appeared in Tomorrow Magazine) decided to talk about it for seven pages, and also that it's happening in animals, and may have resulted in behavioral changes in boys: READ MORE

First They Came for the Baggy Pants

...and the WASPs said nothing. Then, they came for the seersucker: READ MORE

Close-Reading a Controversial List

To Close the Loop on Exploring the Nature of Subcultures

This Kids in the Hall record store sketch about a guy who wants to "get into the Doors" is both perfect (exquisitely, gloriously perfect) and funny (as funny as anything on this, one of the funniest shows of all time) and completely apt to our conversation yesterday.

Chicago: Hot or Not?

If you have managed to get through this much of your life without really thinking about whether or not Chicago sucks, it ends NOW. READ MORE

"Ohio," Patty Griffin and Robert Plant

If you are disappointed* that there's more Patty Griffin than Robert Plant on this song, you need to study your Patty Griffin. Go into the woods for a year and listen to Patty Griffin. Especially this. READ MORE

On Subcultures

I was reading this elaborate (and reasonably fascinating) piece on the financial mechanics behind Phish (the jam band, as opposed to the ice cream with the little fudge fish in it) and by the end of it, I felt almost sad for not really caring about Phish on a deep personal level. I feel similarly about LARPing. This is not a reasonable thing to be made sad by. What it reminded me of, honestly, was Edith's piece about Kreayshawn in New York Times Magazine two years years ago. If you missed it, it is basically a very wise treatise about the nature of death and the loneliness of aging out of the cultural zeitgeist, but it's also about Kreayshawn. I will quote from it briefly: READ MORE

Come Back to the Raft Ag'in, Wishbone Honey!

"We're not supposed to see Mr. Darcy as a talking dog, we're supposed to see a talking dog *playing the part of* Mr. Darcy. This is taken to extreme levels of metatextuality anytime Wishbone attempts a Shakespeare adaptation; here the flashback sequences don't just look like television plays, they're explicitly plays at an in-universe level (indeed the Tempest adaptation is particularly head-spinning as Wishbone imagines a performance of The Tempest in response to the kids...putting on a performance of The Tempest). Theatrical performances are by definition non-representational, which would seem to put this half of the show in conflict with the themes of the Oakdale one. Or does it?" READ MORE