Elly

Elly

"I did something bad," she said. Inspired by a workplace speaker, Caitlin had been browsing rescue sites before I got home from work. For months we had been talking about getting a dog but we worried that we weren't ready. Now the search had begun and there were three pups pulling on her heartstrings. She [...]

Paternity Leave

Paternity Leave

2020 has been a, um, challenging year. There was the massive wildfire that destroyed lives, reshaped entire biospheres and underscored the urgency of addressing climate change at every level, as soon as possible. No, not that wildfire, the other one. There were protests against the racial injustice that is baked into American life, a widespread [...]

I Love Everything About The Aces’ Under My Influence

I Love Everything About The Aces’ Under My Influence

When I stumbled across The Aces earlier this year, they felt like HAIM, if the HAIM sisters had spent less time listening to Wilson Phillips and more time listening to New Found Glory. Their songs are undeniably summery and their hooks are undeniably catchy. The short version: If you care about pop music, you should [...]

More Recommended Reading from Black Writers

More Recommended Reading from Black Writers

Malcolm Gladwell's Talking to Strangers introduced me to "Hell You Talmbout," a magnificent piece of social activism by Janelle Monae and Wondaland Records from 2015. The song is primarily a roll call of Black Americans that have been murdered by the police and that it feels even more prescient right now than it did in [...]

Sideways, 16 Years Later

Sideways, 16 Years Later

I want to like Sideways, I really do. Alexander Payne's 2004 film, which tracks Paul Giamatti's Miles and Thomas Haden Church's Jack across a bachelor party tour of California wine country, spends much of its runtime celebrating writing and creation. It's just the kind of movie someone who writes a blog that is partially about [...]

The Queue: Head Automatica, Lights and Michelle Branch

The Queue: Head Automatica, Lights and Michelle Branch

The Queue is a recurring excuse for me to talk about songs or albums in short form. This week I examine a catchy Head Automatica track, my slow-growing love for Canadian pop star Lights and a great finale from Michelle Branch. Let’s investigate. Head Automatica – "Laughing at You" Head Automatica's 2004 debut Decadence is, [...]

A Beautifully Foolish Endeavor and the Surrender of Power

A Beautifully Foolish Endeavor and the Surrender of Power

Hank Green's A Beautifully Foolish Endeavor is a complex story. An alien hive intelligence, the perils of social media celebrity and a talking monkey are among the natural headline fodder of the plot's explosive adventure. Beyond that, it's legitimately astounding that Green managed to release a book in mid-2020 that is so keenly attuned to [...]

The Guilt of Bad Albums

The Guilt of Bad Albums

By the time Third Eye Blind released Ursa Major in 2009 it had been six years since the band's last album (2003's Out of the Vein) and nine years since the band's last substantial hit ("Never Let You Go"). The only people who cared about Ursa Major were the people who cared about Third Eye [...]