One of my professors in a writing workshop once complained that I had started a story with “an explosion of comma splices.” While I appreciated the clever new collective noun, I wasn’t entirely sure what to do about it. He advocated switching to a period (aka full stop), but I initially rebelled. I was trying to […]

You don’t have to be a lawyer to realize that the Supreme Court’s decision today in the Hobby Lobby (HL) case was a bad one.  Here are five reasons, I’m sure there are more. 5) Hobby Lobby’s claims were scientifically invalid. HL objected to providing insurance coverage for certain contraceptives (IUDs and “morning after” pills) on […]

I just threw (figuratively anyway) a script across the room. I’d been reading a newly published play, and was happily pulled in to the story, until in the final pages, a twist was revealed that changed everything that had gone before. I wanted to scream at the author, “Why? Why did you destroy the lovely […]

Let us, for a moment, assume that the anti-tax rhetoric from some parts of the populace reflects real concern rather than mere Libertarian wankery. Now of course, everyone wants to hang on to as much of their earnings as possible, but why is this message so strong right now? Well, for one thing, median wages (measured in […]

Thirty-six years ago, Nature magazine featured an article by J. H. Mercer. It said that if we continued to use fossil fuels and pump CO2 into the air, there was a strong risk that humanity would be responsible for melting the of Antarctic ice sheet. This week, NASA confirmed that we have gone so far […]

We’ve been going through the dramatic styles of the early 20th century in my Radical Theatre class.  I believe I can now distinguish between them using two objects, as follows. Assume each of the playwrights walks into a room containing only a dictionary and a blender: The Dadaist will put the dictionary into the blender. The […]

I’m feeling a bit overwhelmed, I’ve now had two staged readings (of different plays) in under a week’s time.  It’s interesting to compare the two experiences.  I wrote about the earlier performance last week, so now I feel obligated to comment on this one. The most recent reading was two days ago, at City Lights […]

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