Essays

Has Binge-Watching Hijacked Your Dopamine?

I don’t trust anything that I look forward to too much. And topping that list is the double-edged sword of prestige television. For over half a century, critics have railed against what we used to call the “boob tube,” usually objecting on moral or political grounds.

If they knew dopamine like I know dopamine, they could have made a stronger case.

I’m neither a Puritan nor a Luddite. I’ve thrilled to the Emmy-winning dramas of television’s new Golden Age. And like so many others, I fell victim to what TV critic James Poniewozik calls “The Suck“: “that narcotic, tidal feeling of getting drawn into a show and letting it wash over you for hours.” But after spending too many precious hours with my neo-cortex on hold, I had to reassess my priorities. Continue reading.

Flash Fiction

Go Rogue with Me

Well, sir, ever since I learned of its existence I’ve wanted to join the Deep State. I’m sure you’ll find everything in order on my application. Experience in the field? Check! In fact, I’m currently working undercover as a member of a swim team. My mission is to hide in the deep end and spy on other swimmers from below. I bet you didn’t know that the older you get, the more flaccid your flesh becomes, even if you’re super strong and fit. True fact! I lie on my back at the bottom of the pool, gazing in horror at curtains of loose skin flapping around tight quadriceps like the jowls of a toothless old man as he chews. That’s but one example of the caliber of intel you can expect from Agent Martinovic.
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Featured Video

A Snake in the Sand

Poetry

Too Busy To Die

busy-bestAre you busy?
I’m busy
In fact, I’m so goddamn busy
it’s a miracle I found the time
to come down here and
tell you all about just how busy I am
and have been ever since I hit college
and discovered a whole world
ripe for salvation— by me!
Everything from nuclear proliferation to the rainforest
to the tyranny of cellulite
required my personal attention
God must have known I’d be so busy and not blessed me with children
Where could I possibly have
squeezed them in?

 

Though I might have had a chance if I’d mastered multi-tasking
Efficiency at its most exalted
I could check my email on the toilet
eat breakfast in the car while driving to work and
much like a certain former president
have my sexual needs attended to
while conducting business on the phone
Read the rest of this poem »

Videos

All My Loving

I took up singing at the tender age of 60. I don’t sound great but, oh, baby, I’m having a blast! If you’ve always yearned to sing, dance, paint, write, act, surf, or frolic naked in the woods with a panpipe, don’t keep your spirit on hold for a single moment longer. Make the experiment! Dare to be an amateur! Dare to write badly, sing off-key, lose your lines, ruin a canvas, wipeout. Life is too short to let your passions languish unexplored. Do it for yourself. Do it for all of creation. Do it for joy.