When I read the recent essay “The Unraveling of America” by Wade Davis in Rolling Stone, I tried to ignore it. I tried to do the same thing I did for 13 years in Canada when confronted with spiteful, toxic anti-Americanism: stuff it down, pretend it didn’t matter to me, or — if I was at a … Continue reading The Unraveling of “The Unraveling of America”
Tomorrow we embark on a 14-hour flight to New Zealand. It will be the 8th time I’ve done it, so I have my routines and tricks to get through the ordeal. But the truth is: I sort of love it. The flight, I mean. Its phases and rhythms. At first everyone is excited and fresh … Continue reading Six Hours to Go
The first time we saw Larry he was rolling around in the dirt. Scott and I were on one of the long morning walks we had resolved to start taking when we moved into our current neighborhood. Before moving here we had been living in a tiny condo in a concrete building near the (then-future) … Continue reading Larry & Banana
Surely there is a medical term for the unholy rage one feels upon returning to a house that’s been sublet for any length of time. For it’s clearly a psychological complex, an anger wholly irrational and out of proportion to the perceived offense. As I ransack my kitchen looking for the measuring spoons and nearly … Continue reading The Tenants
The partner and I went to buy a mattress. We both like a firm bed, so went into the store armed with cocky certainty about the kind of item we were looking for. It took a while to convince the salesman we were serious when we said hard. He showed us to one disgusting cloud … Continue reading The Rock
My house is extremely clean. WARNING: TOTAL SPOILERSOnly a cranky, elitist misanthrope could fail to love this perfectly pitched middlebrow confection. All your friends loved it, right? Amy Adams is reliably adorable as a brilliant yet weirdly underaged linguist whose work is admired at the highest reaches of government. (The way we know she’s brilliant … Continue reading Arrival: Not Quite There
Poor lapine, Do you repine? Thoughts of pastry, Very tasty— But not for you, Herbaceous creature Unequal to your greatest feature: A farinaceous chapeau. Cruel tableau!
Do not expect reciprocity. Open your home in an attitude of non-expectation. Try not to hope. This state is impossible for human beings. Recognize this impossibility and forgive yourself for your desire. Yet continue to strive. Turn yourself inside out as much as you can. Strain toward the perfection of absolute giving as a horizon, … Continue reading On Hospitality. A Manifesto.
Today I rise from it, or at least this is the plan. I turn my head—not slowly or gingerly—to regard the midden of balms and anodynes that is my bedside table. Their fundamental efficacy is in doubt, but one must do something. At the very least they compose a curious collage suitable as a focal … Continue reading Sick Bed
Check out my essay on Episode 7.3 of Mad Men over at Kritik, the blog of the Unit for Criticism and Intepretive Theory at the University of Illinois. I discuss New Wave cinema, HAL from 2001: A Space Odyssey, the Oedipus complex, and lots more!