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The Truth About Pursuing An MFA In Creative Writing

While that sounds discouraging, I really feel responsible for underscoring what a mess the U.S. education system is right now, from top to bottom. Academic creative writing is, unfortunately, even more easy prey for all manner of administrative malice, because few creative writing program directors have learned (been disciplined) to effectively communicate their worth.

Social Media Sobriety Test is Created

“Each night, millions of people are affected by drunk posting,” the narrator says, the screen showing a picture of a baby posted on Facebook with a comment underneath that says “Your baby has a big head!” In an effort to reduce such embarrassment associated with being drunk and making unseemly comments like these on Facebook, WebRoot has created a program that requires the user to take a sobriety test before they log on. Video inside.

Eleven Kinda Fantastic Tweets By Roger Ebert

Roger Ebert, like so many millions of other people who are not the most famous film critic in America, has a Twitter account. Perhaps you learned this when you read Chris Jones’ masterful Esquire profile earlier this year, or when Ebert’s very public loathing of the Tea Party movement came to a head a few months later in a particularly nasty exchange via the microblogging platform itself…

The 10 Sweetest Vintage ’80s Commercials Ever

Nintendo, California Raisins, Sure Deodorant, California Cooler, Honda Scooters, Juicy Fruit, Whatchamacallit, and the first cell phone commercial ever aired. Finish off your hump day with a look at America’s endearing and optimistic marketing past. Videos inside.

Sports Fan Goes Insane at Basketball Game, is Strangely Endearing

A video from a Jumbotron at a Celtics game has been making its rounds on the internet over the past couple days. In it, a young Celtics fan takes the opportunity of being captured on screen for what it’s worth. What he does with his time on camera is pretty intense and sweet. About halfway through it gets surreal. Video after the jump.

Five Years Late: George W. Bush Cares About Kanye West

Next Monday, Matt Lauer’s interview with George W. Bush will air on NBC. Bush is on the circuit to hustle his new memoir, Decision Points. Yesterday, in advance of the televised interview, excerpts of the transcript were made available to press. The transcripts are fairly boring, but there is a bright spot.

Pines, Wind, Water

There are places that bring you back to yourself. My friend’s house at the edge of a cold, clear Ontario lake does this. It is mostly window, a small, tidy shelter she designed and her husband built, filled with her artwork — a cocoon of creativity. Here, the silence is deep and healing, the only sounds water lapping against weathered rock, wind sighing through tall pines, the distant, lazy drone of an airplane, suspended high in the brilliant blue of an empty sky.

How To Continue Using Text-Based Communication And Social Networking To Destroy Intimacy

Once you send the person you only recently only kind-of met a text message that says ‘hey is anything going on tonight’ you will ‘tip your hand’, so to speak, and you should be aware that you should not send text messages like that, nor text messages to the effect of ‘what are you up to’ after a certain hour unless you would like the recipient to construe your text message as a sexual invitation. That is just the world we live in.

Korea Field Report: The ESL Gold Rush Pans Out

One caveat: the life here is addictive… After a year of watching your savings dwindle living a frugal lifestyle, you stick it out until the last $1,000 you have is the money you use for a flight back to Seoul, where upon arrival they hand your flight money back to you. In cash.

How To Get Your Heart Broken By A Boy For The First Time

Your thoughts and reactions will scare you and you will have no idea you could be this crazy. Feel betrayed by your mind and wonder how this insanity ever lived inside of you, how these irrational behaviors could’ve been dormant until you got your heart broken for the first time. Now they’ve shown up as if to say, “Oh hey! You thought you were normal and well-adjusted? J/K! Heartbreak: 1. You: 0.”

Letter to Your 20-Something Self: A Mad Lib For Your Enjoyment

I went back online and researched the most common things covered in the typical “A Letter to My 20-Something Self.” You’ll be dismayed to know, in a huge blow to our collective egos, that most of our twenties were about the same, minus the details. So after compiling all that data, I created “A Letter to My 20-Something Self” Mad Libs for all of us. You can thank me later.

Wurtzel and Hersh Talk Rat Girl, Jon Stewart, Babies, and Best-Friends

There are seemingly enough common denominators between the two to sustain cogent conversation – book deals, depression – but it becomes obvious early on that the two-hour dialogue will be anything but. Observing a conversation between Elizabeth Wurtzel and Kristin Hersh is a lot like sipping from your water glass, and swallowing gin.

The Secret of The Secret is That Is That It’s No Secret

Oh Holy Hell, nothing gets me as riled up as The Secret.   So let’s go there.  First of all, I need to confess that I am an occasional dabbler in the New Age arts (aka bogus witchcraft).  I am, I admit, a foul weather witch and when I’m waiting to hear back after a particularly promising job interview, I try and use the power of positive image-based thinking to draw goodness into my life.

San Francisco Riots After Their Baseball Team Wins World Series

The Giants won the World Series last night. The enterprising people of San Francisco quickly took the opportunity to riot. Riot police came, bottles were thrown, fires were started. Fights were documented inside fast food chains. Some participants and onlookers used hashtags #SFRiot and #SFRiots to update Twitter on their exploits, while others checked in to the riots on Foursquare. Videos after the jump.

How to Start a Post-Rock Band

Are you the only person in Canada who owns a guitar and hasn’t appeared on a Broken Social Scene album? Jeff “Mogwai” Merrion reveals his step by step guide to becoming a successful post-rock star.

15 Moms

My mom Melinda died when I was 8 years old and Marv, my barely-there father, was saddled with a child who he barely knew: me. Marv was essentially MIA before my mom died. He liked cars, boats, and hunting… not kids. So as we stared at each other across the dinner table every night–over a pizza box or mac and cheese usually–we were likely thinking the same thing…

3 Emails I Sent at Work

I am an Administrative Analyst—wherein the word anal resides like some etymological hemorrhoid deep within my seat. Keep telling myself Kafka had a day job, an effect with diminishing returns as the years roll by and I still haven’t turned into an insect.

Watching People Watching People: Notes On Reading The Internet

All the while, of course, I’ve left my gmail window up and active, where I can just see the very top tab of the screen where it says: Gmail – Inbox (9). And my eyes are constantly, desperately shooting back to that parenthetic number, hoping, waiting, praying for it to change, as if, the instant that my 9 turns into a 10, it’s an irrefutable sign that someone loves me, someone needs me, someone’s thinking about me, that I’m good and worthwhile valuable…

When I Was in a Band

In the Long Island hardcore scene, bands fell into two categories: “joke punk band” and “super serious hardcore band.” Hint hint. The movie was so stupid that we were like “We have to start a band based on this!” That’s what kids do. They take dumb things and make them dumber. I remember we had only one song. It was called “Mr. Jonathan” (named after the main character of Black Shampoo) and the only lyrics I remember were “Oh Mr. Jonathan/you are the fucking man!”

Bears vs. Gian (1-3)

He tried to push me back and off of him when I was getting ready to come but I leaned into him instead, collapsing his knees, spraying his guts. I felt like he deserved it for being so careless. I had nothing anyway. He was safe. I fell off to his side and he jumped out of bed in a huff and ran to the bathroom. I remember thinking, “I’ve done nothing wrong” as I drifted off to sleep.

A Phone Conversation with Willow Smith

Three things about Willow Smith: She whips her hair back and forth, she has super famous parents and she’s the coolest nine year-old we know. At Willow’s age, we were playing in the sandbox and trying not to pee our pants. We wondered how she became so evolved and avoided this pesky thing called a childhood so we  went straight to the source to find out. And when the source refused to talk to us, we just made something up.

The Facebook Pages of Five Experimental Musicians

Nate Young – member of quintessential American noise group Wolf Eyes. Minimalist approach to Facebook maintenance. Facebook profile picture doesn’t show Young, but a drawing in the style of Goya’s Disasters of War. Indicates the bands of which he is a member.

Why I Still Need Friends

This was 1998, and the Friends’ cushy lifestyle still looked attainable. There was no war (that we were aware of in rural California), no $13 trillion dollar deficit, no 9.2% unemployment rate, no housing collapse. We lived in a Disneyland of sub-prime mortgages and college loans, APR financing and shopping malls and our Boomer parents waved their magic Mastercards and told us that, someday, we could be anything we chose.

Waka Flocka Flame – Flockaveli

Flocka grew up a gangster, selling drugs, hanging out with Gucci Mane and his entourage, living with him mom – and Flockaveli just seems like an extension of that life. He seems to have no concern for being anything except himself. Rap is just another platform for him to “go hard” with his friends and family.

I Like R&B Music A Lot

I’d make the case that the R&B genre in general has yet to cross over to white audiences to the same extent as hip-hop/rap. I’m not a historian or a sociologist, so I’m not going to try and explain it, but it’s something I’ve observed. White males, in particular, seem less likely to earnestly listen to R&B of their own accord…

What I Did the Last Four Halloweens

I remember encountering several people from one of my neuroscience classes in which I never spoke. I vaguely remember them making fun of me by asking me questions about the teacher in sarcastic tones. I also remember there was a gay guy who was grabbing me a lot while I was dancing, to the point that I had to forcibly tell him to “chill.”

I Go See Saw 3D

Driving out to see Saw 3D on a Friday afternoon I thought to myself, what an exquisitely depressing thing to do. I went to a nearby multiplex; on the way, briefly, it seemed like I could be driving on a country road; fall colors surrounded me, red, orange, etc. Then the Saucon Valley Promenade Shops appeared, an outdoor mall  that simulates some kind of small town experience, I don’t know which one.

I Was Masturbated At

Apparently some guy thought an awesome way to spend a Wednesday night was to hang out in the dark, pants down with wiener in hand, and wait for some girl to walk by so he can make a loud production out of touching his privates.

My First Love Was a Lion Tamer

In my memory, he is smiling. His hair is blond, nearly as white as his teeth, and his skin is the color of peanut butter. His entire body is wrapped in iridescent blue spandex; it shimmers, but not so brightly as the silver rope trim and the rhinestones arranged in swirling galaxies across his broad chest.

The Hipster Never Was

This was a misjudgment. Not growing up — that is, the refusal to put away childish things and indeed to maintain and affirm one’s inner child, even to the extent that it may blossom into an outer child, though with the wrinkled face of a seeming adult—this is in no sense a problem. Childhood is the only source of authenticity in America.

Why You Missed All Of The CMJ Bands You Were Totally Going To See

You might read all of these tweets and status updates and feel excited and attempt to assemble a CMJ ‘plan of attack’ for yourself and your friends. The official CMJ website seeks to facilitate this by implementing a ‘schedule builder’ so that you can put all the bands you are theoretically going to see into one schedule so you will always know where to go for which ‘act.’

Return to High School

I was pimply, shy and didn’t know anyone – and they had all been attending the same area schools together since kindergarten. A group of boys decided to bark at me every day as I walked through the halls, left a dog biscuit on my desk, howled at me for amusement. They quickly gave me an identity I wouldn’t shed for the next two years – Doglin.

A Phone Conversation with James Franco

Right. And afterwards, this boy pawns her off on all of his friends and she sleeps with them, for no apparent reason. At one point, they even gangbang her and she’s somodized by a carrot. They give her the nickname, Chinatown.

Steak Ass Bitches, Milking Titties and Bleak Ass Hos

It honestly just seems that our language exists in a sort of private vacuum with little outside influence where variations on words and themes get ‘compounded’ via literally hundreds of hours of chatting and thousands of emails to produce what a ‘newcomer’ might see as offensive and absurd and very weird…

Dominant Trends That Control the Tumblr User Base

Tumblr users share a number of recurring gimmicks – love for Nutella, appreciation for artfully decorated cupcakes, floral print dresses, Starbucks beverages, rainy Paris passageways, and celestial landscapes of Helvetica-emblazoned skylines. They display a propensity to reblog film photos from disposable cameras…

This Charles Manson Jean Jacket Has Nothing to Do With Anything

This is the setup. Ms. Rubin is wending her sweet way thorough the West Village when she spots these two “hipsters” ahead of her. One of whom is wearing what is supposedly rather offensive attire. Ms. Julia Rubin snaps the following photo as evidence, as proof, as a way to say this person really went there…

Deborah Mitford: Wait for Me!

She goes on to say that “when she [Pamela] became pregnant he took her to the north of Norway and drove for miles over bumpy roads with the inevitable result of a miscarriage.”   Unity (“always the odd one out,” says her sister), fell madly in love with Hitler and, when Britain declared war on Germany, she shot herself in the head with a pearl-handled revolver in a Munich park…

HBO’S Bored to Death

Bored follows the same formula as other 30-minute HBO cult-hits like Entourage and Sex and the City — a group of oddball friends from different backgrounds who stick together no matter what. No matter how many dudes Samantha slept with, or how many times Mr. Big came back, no matter how loud Ari screams, and no matter what Jonathan Ames does, everybody’s always cool with everybody at the end of the day.

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