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Posts tagged "John Jeremiah Sullivan"

Bicycle Wheels Unzipping Puddles: John Jeremiah Sullivan on the Death of the Dream

This comes from John Jeremiah Sullivan’s first book, Blood Horses: Notes of a Sportswriter’s Son. In it he chronicles, among many things, the archaeological and cultural story of the race horse, in tangent with his own relationship with his late father, the sportswriter Mike Sullivan. This particular segment details his father’s early ambition to be […]

Another Week Ends: Liturgical Boredom, Hikikomori, Paul Deen, Doubtful Faith, Upstream Color, and Big Star

1. A slightly truncated weekender for a slightly truncated week. First off, The Guardian’s newfound boldness paid off–in spades!–in the non-Snowden-related form of Giles Fraser’s “Our Fear of Boredom Is Simply a Fear of Coming Face to Face With Ourselves”. As the title indicates, it’s a terrifically wise take on what’s really going on in […]

Morphine for a Bed of Nails: Marilynne Robinson Talks Anxiety and “Reality”

A typical description of an anxiety attack or a panic attack goes something like this: a routine behavior suddenly and emphatically goes rogue. You are driving, you are eating an orange slice, taking a test, conversing at a party, and the moment becomes obstructed by an impossible–not just mental, probably just as much physical–and inimical […]

Hopelessly Devoted: Matthew Chapter Four Verses Five through Seven

If you’ve got a new copy of The Mockingbird Devotional, good! Turn to today, June 10, and you’ll find this meditation from our very own Will McDavid. If you don’t have a copy of The Mockingbird Devotional, well, just read below, and then purchase one for yourself, here. You won’t regret it–at least if you’ve […]

Another Week Ends: Assurance Anxiety, Genesis Lessons, Tumblr Love, Lost in the Cosmos, Iron Man Prep, and Hatsune Miku’s Pizza Stage

1. First off, a little pop theology. Phillip Cary contributed an encouraging review of J.D. Greear’s sensationally titled Stop Asking Jesus Into Your Heart to the recent issue of Christianity Today, under the header “Anxious About Assurance”. As he does in his book Good News for Anxious Christians, Cary gets straight to the heart of […]

If Beyoncé Lip-Synced, You Made Her

People are calling it “Beyoncé-gate.” Did she or did she not lip-sync the Inauguration’s National Anthem? If she didn’t, what was the fuss with the Marine Corps Band–who first said she had a backup track, and then “backed off” that earlier claim? What about that picture of her on Tumblr, hooked into her laptop, in […]

Axl Rose and Michael Jackson Attend a Christian Rock Festival: Reviewing Pulphead

I was honored to be asked to review John Jeremiah Sullivan’s somewhat recent essay collection Pulphead for Modern Reformation magazine a few months ago. As readers of this site will know, the book made quite an impression. MR has been kind enough to allow us to reprint a hefty portion of it. They’ve made the […]

Another Week Ends: DFW50, Simpsons 500, Ira Talks Radiolab, Rowling Talks New Novel, Helpless Women, Helpless Kids, Lenten Identity, Cormac McCarthy Pictionary

All the best wishes for those mockingbirds at the Liberate Conference in Fort Lauderdale this weekend, including our very own David Zahl. 1. Along with the rest of the blogosphere this week, we wish David Foster Wallace a happy 50th birthday. There’s too many blessings to recount, but the web has exploded with numerous avenues […]

“Weeping and Lifting Weights”: Getting Real with The Bachelor

Did you see this Monday’s Bachelor? When Casey S. got called to come outside and talk to Chris about something important, you knew, you knew it was something important. You just knew her bags were packed, she was leaving her chance at, her life with Ben. Casey S. had that look, like “I know I’m […]

The Only Excellence-Proofed Musical Genre (You Guessed It)

A brilliant passage from John Jeremiah Sullivan’s essay about his experience at the Creation (Christian Rock) festival, “Upon This Rock,” which can be found in his highly recommended collection Pulphead. Don’t think I’ve ever heard the CCM conundrum expressed so precisely or matter of factly, i.e. most such takedowns tend to be gleeful exercises in […]

High-School Jesus Phases and Doubts About One’s Doubts

How to create a Pavlovian response in yours truly: 1. Produce extended, compassionate essays on Michael Jackson and Axl Rose. 2. Let it slip that you were raised Episcopalian. 3. Prompt a number of your colleagues to compare you with David Foster Wallace, going so far as to proclaim you his literary heir. 4. Write […]

Another Week Ends: Colbert’s Gratitude, Eagleton’s Jesus, Silent Men, Parenthood, Buck, Twilight Sparkle, and Sendak on Blake

1. Midway through The New York Times Magazine’s lengthy profile of America’s favorite all-around man-of-excellence Stephen Colbert, a bomb drops. To comment on his words might detract from their power. Holy Smokes, ht NM: In 1974, when Colbert was 10, his father, a doctor, and his brothers Peter and Paul, the two closest to him […]