The Weather

Weather. Or not.

Five years ago, whenever a friend asked me why I’d given up on LA, it was obvious where the clichés ended and an actual opinion began: I hated the people, the prices, the traffic, the weather—…

The New Kroger

Introductions

Dear Reader, This legend is a key to the formatting used throughout to indicate topics that will be expanded in future columns, and that those terms mean something more than how they appear: Underlined = vestigial racial…

Interviews

Rebecca Makkai

It was so perfect, it felt written: my used copy of Rebecca Makkai’s charming debut novel turned out to be a laminated library one, wearing a sticker (F for Fiction; below that: MAKKAI, R) on the…

Song of the Adjunct

Panic Attack

Because mine is a commuter school, I’ve come to expect a fair amount of tardiness. Many of my students live more than an hour from New Orleans. They drive in from towns called Geismar and Westwego…

Love and Sensitivity

I Got a Woman

Sometimes I call my woman, “Woman.” Sometimes her girlfriends call her, “Girl,” but she is not a girl. She is a woman. Only sometimes do I quote Billy Madison and say, “Don’t tell me my business,…

The Weather

Pillow Flight

I don’t know where my pillows went. Last time I saw them they were under the door. But they’re gone now. Obviously this is a problem. Those pillows had been doing good work for me. Those pillows…

Letters to Jake

World Views

Hey Jake I think we’ve hit an impasse. First of all, I went to your party the other night, and you were the only one there. Yes, I got there late, and yes, JR had been…