Category Archives: UNIQUELY AMERICAN BULLSHIT

ON CULTS, COURAGE, AND PERSONAL BLIND SPOTS

Something in me loves a TV show about cults. You name the group, I’ve watched the documentary — Scientology, NXIVM, The Family, Heaven’s Gate, the Rajneeshees, Branch Davidians, the Moonies, The People’s Temple. Why am I interested? On the one … Continue reading

Posted in CHILD REARING, COURAGE, HEROES, SELF HELP, SPIRIT, UNIQUELY AMERICAN BULLSHIT | 17 Comments

SLOW-MOTION MIDLIFE CRISIS

In an interview before he died, songwriter John Prine described his old age, his daily life, his relationships with others. “I’m good at hiding,” he said, laughing. He meant hiding from loved ones, from professional obligations. He meant slipping away … Continue reading

Posted in CHILD REARING, COURAGE, LITERATURE, MOVIES, MUSIC, MY CHILDHOOD, SPIRIT, UNIQUELY AMERICAN BULLSHIT | 32 Comments

SOMETIMES IT TAKES A GHOST

Shakespeare’s Hamlet is considered one of the greatest plays ever written. But it’s also a ghost story. The king is killed by his brother, who then marries the widow and takes the crown. The dead king re-appears as a ghost, … Continue reading

Posted in COURAGE, HEROES, LITERATURE, SAYINGS, UNIQUELY AMERICAN BULLSHIT | 5 Comments

WE’VE BEEN GIVEN HEARTS TO KNOW THE INCREDIBLE

I thought of Ray Bradbury today while reading about the NASA helicopter on Mars. I thought of him not because of his first book, The Martian Chronicles, which he published in 1950. Instead I recalled the day 30 years ago … Continue reading

Posted in CHILD REARING, COURAGE, HEROES, LITERATURE, SPIRIT, UNIQUELY AMERICAN BULLSHIT | 8 Comments

BEST DAYS OF MY LIFE

Adam Braseel was wrongfully convicted of murder 14 years ago. Though he hasn’t been officially exonerated, he is out of prison now and beginning to put his life back together. The wrongful imprisonment was caused by sloppy police work, prosecutors … Continue reading

Posted in COURAGE, HEROES, SELF HELP, SPIRIT, UNIQUELY AMERICAN BULLSHIT | 6 Comments

THE CARETAKER PRESIDENT

Oh, Joe. Has there ever been a presidential nominee simultaneously so unimpressive and so desperately needed? I think of you as the Caretaker President, both because our country needs a caretaker and because sometimes it seems like you do, too. … Continue reading

Posted in POLITICS, UNIQUELY AMERICAN BULLSHIT | 27 Comments

ONLY I CAN PROTECT YOU FROM (INSERT HERE)

It’s hard to keep up with the changing scare tactics. Four years ago it was illegal immigrants and Muslims who were threatening our very existence. Today it’s antifa, BLM protesters, and looters. Anything to distract from COVID and unemployment, I … Continue reading

Posted in POLITICS, UNIQUELY AMERICAN BULLSHIT | 2 Comments

“I WORK IN A FUCKING BEAD SHOP”

I have always liked one particular type of moment. I would describe it as a moment which is: unexpected; either funny or disturbing (or both); and deeply revealing of an absurd state of affairs or a background reality which is … Continue reading

Posted in MOVIES, POLITICS, UNIQUELY AMERICAN BULLSHIT | 8 Comments

AFTER TRUMP

Whether the Trump presidency lasts four years, eight years, somewhere in between, or — God help us — more than eight years, I hope there is a young app-developer somewhere who can help all of us, on both sides of … Continue reading

Posted in POLITICS, UNIQUELY AMERICAN BULLSHIT | 8 Comments

MIKE KONRAD

It was sad and frustrating to learn that my old newspaper editor Mike Konrad died today of Covid19. Earlier in the pandemic, the deaths of songwriter John Prine and Los Angeles-area family practitioner Dr. Paul Constantine hit me hard, but … Continue reading

Posted in COURAGE, HEROES, UNIQUELY AMERICAN BULLSHIT | 14 Comments