Vicino Riva’s Taste of Paradise

So it turns out the guy Pope Francis hugged and kissed to such great fanfare last November 6 does have a name. It’s Vicino Riva. It also turns out he has a history. Now 53, Riva lives in Vicenza, just west of Venice. His tumors began growing when he was 15; both he and his [Read More...]

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The $*(#$ing Power of Vulgarity

I don’t have my copy of Norman Mailer’s Armies of the Night on my lap. A few years ago, I loaned it to someone who took it with her when she drifted out of my life. But among the sections that have stuck in my head, more or less intact, is one where Mailer digresses [Read More...]

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“We” Ennui and the “I” Revolution

For all I know, Catholic social critics would do away with adolescence and young adulthood altogether. You know, keep it simple — when kids turn 12, pack the boys off to sea as powder monkeys and marry the girls off to moneylenders or estate bailiffs with wattles and gout. But, as of this writing, the [Read More...]

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