Tag: popular culture

State supreme court upholds anti-"revenge porn" law, says it doesn't violate free speech

They say Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned. The scorned woman in this case was part of a romantic triangle. She was a jilted fiancée who electronically shared nude photos of her ex-fiance’s lover, who happened to be the girl next door. All the juicy details—and they are juicy—can be read here. This... Read more »

Are mass shootings Twitter’s fault?

With three tragic mass shootings dominating the headlines in as many weeks, it brought to mind a recent federal court decision which didn’t seem to get much play in the media at the time. Many of these shooters feed their radical, hateful ideologies from content on Internet websites and especially social media.  But should those... Read more »

Easter reflections on how the Notre Dame fire united us, for a moment

In the midst of all the political and social discord roiling America and Europe at the moment, in the middle of all the angst and discontent playing out in our streets and legislative houses, the world collectively paused for a few hours this past Monday in a rare if brief display of unity and one-mindedness,... Read more »
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Why I don't miss working as 'holiday help'

By all reports, the roaring economy has made retail stores desperate for seasonal workers, or what used to be called “Christmas help.” This brings back memories of my own adventures working in retail during the holiday season. The first was in the 1980s, when I was an 18-year-old college freshman. I took a job at... Read more »

Constitutional Writes: The gay wedding cake case

Befuddled and even a little dismayed that today’s U.S. Supreme Court ruling in favor of a Colorado baker who refused to create a cake for a same-sex wedding skirted the overarching constitutional issues involved and turned instead on case-specific issues? (The Court’s majority opinion, which was not divided along ideological lines, focused on specific actions... Read more »

Loss of Tom Wolfe, Philip Roth leaves big literary shoes to fill

In the space of less than two weeks, we lost two giants in modern American literature. Both of the same generation, each groundbreaking and provocative in his own way, but at the same time very different in style and substance. Tom Wolfe, of course, was the dapper, eccentric Southern-gentleman author of such classics as The... Read more »
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Tarantino's Manson movie invites more apprehension than anticipation

When I first read that director Quentin Tarantino was shooting a film centered around the 1969 Charles Manson murder rampage, I rolled my eyes. Why, Quentin, why? Tarantino, the former video store clerk turned directing genius, is one of my favorite filmmakers. But not only has this particular story been done to death (no pun... Read more »

Celebrating a Christmastime Birthday

My birthday is several days before Christmas. Before you go into sympathetic mode, let me preempt you. I love it. I’ve always loved it. I have never had a problem having a Christmastime birthday, even though everyone else seems to think I should. My whole life, people have kind of shaken their heads and tut-tutted... Read more »

Freaks, Aliens & Things: Ten Must-See Classic Horror Films

“One of us, one of us…” 

This 1932 film about traveling circus “freaks” is just a little over 60 minutes long, but it’s one of the most profoundly disturbing films ever made. The ending alone makes the movie. The revenge exacted on the cruel and scheming female trapeze artist by the freaks will have you going, “But that can’t be right.”
It’s almost Halloween, my favorite holiday, which means horror movies, my favorite film genre. For years I’ve been reading other people’s top-horror-films-of-all-time lists, and been like, “How could they leave that movie out???” and “Poltergeist, really?” So back by popular demand (well not really, but it’s fun to say that), here are my Top Ten scarefests,... Read more »
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Shirley Jackson Wrote Chick Lit from Hell, and It Was Unforgettable

This month marks the centennial of the birth of Shirley Jackson, one of the best American writers most people have never heard of. If she is remembered at all it is for “The Lottery,” but she contributed so much more to contemporary literature than that one, profoundly disturbing short story. If you’ve never read “The... Read more »