What Whiskey Goes With Cheese?: I read “The Spectacular Now”

This is just a quick note to say that I read Tim Tharp's Spectacular Now, the YA novel on which the movie was based, and I really enjoyed it. It's the tale of a high-school cutup and ladies' man who's also a barely-functional alcoholic. He's a generous, sweet-natured guy, fairly open about his self-deceptions, and a total cheeseball. The book is sometimes preachy in an authorial way, which I didn't care for, but most of its occasional swerves into preachiness are much more organic--high-school … [Read more...]

Clone High: Roxana Robinson’s “Cost”

Look, I have to level with you people: This is a fairly good and poignant novel about family miscommunications and thwarted love, wrapped around a disingenuous, mediocre, and kind of infuriating novel about heroin addiction.Good stuff first, I hear that substance abusers lack self-discipline so let's eat our dessert first. The book is about a once-wealthy New England family riven by divorce; patriarch Edward is insufferably smug, his wife Katharine is losing her memory, their daughter Julia … [Read more...]

“This Is Not My Beautiful City”: I review “Belleville”

for AmCon: A young American expatriate in Paris comes home one afternoon to find her husband, a doctor working on pediatric AIDS for Doctors Without Borders, unexpectedly home in the middle of the day and watching porn. This setup, which could lead to a farce or a realistic domestic drama, instead gets the suspense-flick treatment in Amy Herzog’s tense and thought-provoking “Belleville” (at D.C.’s Studio Theatre through October 12).I’ve seen three Herzog plays so far (and reviewed “4000 Mile … [Read more...]

“The Vast Majority of Illegal Drug Use Is Not Problematic”: Substance.com

more … [Read more...]

The Anima Christi: A Deleted Chapter from My Great Big Gay Catholic Book

I had to cut a lot from the book, and this chapter was eccentric and zigzagging enough that it made sense to get rid of it. But I'm glad to share it with you guys now. Some of these thoughts will be familiar to readers--and some of them get recycled in the book itself, e.g. "Will I be gay in Heaven?", because I thought that stuff was important to keep in--but I hope there's enough new material to keep y'all interested.The full list of DVD extras I hope to provide between now and the book's … [Read more...]

“Journalists, Radio Hosts, Addicts, The Imprisoned, And the Pro-Life Movement”

an incomplete list of people St Maximilian Kolbe is the patron of. Whoa. His feast day is today. That list via David Freddoso. … [Read more...]

The Pub Curmudgeon on the Rolling English Road

origin of the poem, which I hadn't known, etc: ...It isn’t widely realised, though, that the poem actually comes from a strange novel by Chesterton entitled The Flying Inn which was published in 1914 and is described by Charles Moore in the linked article, which oddly fails to name it in its title. As he says, “The novel is mostly quite silly, and occasionally objectionable.”The theme of the book, which in a way is prophetic but at the same time very wide of the mark, is a takeover of Engla … [Read more...]


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