• bart simpson vs. bill cosby

    Where’s Your Huxtables Now, Flanders?

    Remember the big Bart Simpson scare in the early nineties? Everyone was freaking out because The Simpsons was beating The Cosby Show in the ratings. I remember a picture of Bill Cosby next to Bart Simpson with boxing gloves was on a bunch of tabloids in the grocery store. America had chosen this dysfunctional family over the clean family values of the Huxtables. They wanted an underachiever (and proud of it, man!) instead of a successful Black household with “no excuses” parenting of Claire and Cliff and his precocious children who all behaved civilly. Conservatives George Bush, Pat Buchanan, and Jerry Falwell used The Simpsons as a straw man for…

  • bookshelf books

    The Books I Read: November – December 2012

    Room by Emma Donoghue Oh my god. This might be the best book I ever read. Certainly the best book I read this quarter, and maybe the best all year. From the moment I saw its description, I was too intrigued. Room takes place in just that: a room. The entire novel revolves around a woman locked in this 12×12 space that she never leaves.  Just that alone had me hooked — what happened?  Was there an apocalypse?  Is this a survival story?  How do you write an entire book that takes place in one room? Much less a book that keeps getting onto “best of the year” lists. How…

  • standup comedy microphone red curtain

    Comedy You May Have Missed (Part 1)

    I have no idea if I’m funny. My wife thinks I’m funny. I have written comedy before. Some absurdist (CS Wars), some functional (Playable Character, Influx Capacitor) Most of my comedy comes from a MST3K/Monty Python root of silliness and sarcasm. But comedy is very difficult to translate to the narrative written word. … Timing! See? But I inject as much humor as I can into my writing. Much of my humor comes from sources that kids today wouldn’t know if it bit them on the bum, dadgummit. So here’s some of my influences.  You probably don’t care, but I do, dadgummit!  And if That Guy With The Glasses did…