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Author Archive

    Holly Golightly and the Knight in Shining Armor Complex

    A recent Onion headline reads as follows: “College-Aged Female Finds Unlikely Kindred Spirit in Audrey Hepburn.” The article (which is about a girl named Emily and set in Charlottesville…) adds that, “while no one would ever suspect it, [Emily] has a Breakfast at Tiffany’s poster hanging in her dorm room.” While I swear that I […]

    New Research on Wealth Confirms What Jesus Said 2,000 Years Ago

    Jesus looked up and saw the rich putting their gifts into the offering box, and he saw a poor widow put in two small copper coins. And he said, “Truly, I tell you, this poor widow has put in more than all of them. For they all contributed out of their abundance, but she out of her poverty put in all she had to live on.” […]

    “The Harder I Fight”: Neko Case on Parents, Depression, and Her New Album

    I’ve never gotten into Neko Case, but after hearing an interview she did on NPR’s “Morning Edition,” I’m definitely going to listen closely to her latest album, called The Worse Things Get, The Harder I Fight, The Harder I Fight, The More I Love You. In the interview, Case tells the story that inspired her […]

    Christmas in August: G.K. Chesterton on the “Winged Levity” of Bethlehem

    A quick excerpt from G. K. Chesterton’s The Everlasting Man: The truth is that there is a quite peculiar and individual character about the hold of [the Christmas] story on human nature; it is not in its psychological substance at all like a mere legend or the life of a great man. It does not exactly […]

    What Does Your Selfie Say About You?

    Like wearing trucker hats and reading Snooki’s books, seflies have become a semi-ironic trend. They’re the most self-conscious of photos, made possible and ubiquitous by the reversible smartphone camera. Plenty of selfie-snapping individuals take pictures of themselves quite seriously, without any claims of “irony”, but even if you’re the kind of person who makes the […]

    The American Hustle and How We’ve Failed

    Last week The Atlantic ran an interview with “cultural historian and social critic” Morris Berman on “how American culture misses life’s meaning.” Berman, who got so fed up with America that he up and moved to Mexico, pinpoints the American “culture of hustling,” in which we’re all living on the treadmill of capitalism run by […]

    Two Sides of the Same Golden Coin: The Confidence/Humility Balance

    Another nugget from Glennon Doyle Melton’s book, Carry on, Warrior: Thoughts on Life Unarmed. In this passage from a chapter called “The Golden Coin,” Melton explores how we can be both confident and humble, and how this seemingly difficult balance is actually quite simple. We usually think of confidence and humility as character traits. She’s […]

    And The Law Won (Or Did It?): Netflix’s Orange is the New Black

    In prison, nothing comes for free—not food, not shower shoes, not even the past. For Piper Chapman, who goes from West Village yuppie to inmate, learning this comes at a tremendous price. Orange is the New Black is Netflix’s latest TV project and was released all at once in mid July for our binge-watching enjoyment. […]

    Karmic Coffee and Surprise Saviors: College Humor’s First Movie

    A few weeks ago I made what, for me, is a slightly odd choice and decided to watch College Humor’s first full-length movie, Coffee Town. Don’t get me wrong, I like College Humor as much as the next girl, which means occasionally, when there’s not too much crude humor, but I usually go for poignant […]

    Spiritual Warfare 2.0: How Prayer is Not a Video Game

    Anthropologist and author T. M. Luhrmann has written a guest column for The New York Times this week called “Addicted to Prayer.” Luhrmann, who has spent time studying the American evangelical community and written a book on “the evangelical relationship with God”, discusses the benefits of any kind of prayer (including secular meditation) on health. […]

    How Karaoke Saved One Man from a Total Eclipse of the Heart

    You start to sing karaoke, and some kind of psychic heart-switch flips. If you’re lucky, and the beer doesn’t run out, it’s more than just a night of debauchery. It’s a spiritual quest. This spiritual quest, like so many spiritual quests, involves Bonnie Tyler. After the sudden death of his wife, music critic and Rolling Stone […]

    Obnoxious Grandmas and (Not) Aging in Style

    In her memoir, Disaster Preparedness, mbird fave Heather Havrilesky tells winning story after winning story of her childhood, adolescence and adulthood with the same humor and insight (and a healthy dose of cynicism) that we’ve admired in her articles (for example, this and this, and also this). Disaster Preparedness is a terrific and engaging read, with just the […]