The Floodgates Open: Variety Show Edition

Most of the rest of my widely-available online work. Some pieces available only on paper, or whose links have broken, will be published later, in full.

Topics include Michael Grunwald’s The New New Dealmy weightlifting routine, potential trespassing, and how I wound up mentoring a stranger in China.

Continue reading

The Floodgates Open: Out of Order Edition

My work thus far for Out of Order, the hip magazine for college students and twentysomethings founded by Yale’s own Dorian Grinspan (but featuring the work of writers from all over the place).

Robert Adams: The Place We Live

My review of a show featuring photographer Robert Adams at the Yale University Art Gallery (now closed, but appearing in many other cities for the next year or so).

“Adams shoots stunning landscapes, often with miles of visibility, but despite the title of the exhibition, you don’t feel as if you could live there. His houses are mostly abstractions, claustrophobic, while his forests are dense and wild or slashed apart and scattered over barren mountainsides. In one of the many segments of the exhibition, “Summer Nights,” he closes in on suburban life, capturing happy parents and children, as well as cars and stores that provide a sense of plenty rather than imposing themselves on the landscape. But even Adams’ vision of the standard American Dream can feel disconcerting. A tilt-o-whirl spins without a rider in sight, looking very alone in the wide, gray night; tree shadows envelop a house and block out the windows; another home is shot in a cloud of what could be fog or smog. ‘We call that one ‘Murder House’,’ Chuang notes.”

Review: The Perks of Being a Wallflower

“Strange to say, I liked this verbal movie most when Chbosky’s voice is stilled. There are a few marvelous depictions of Charlie on drugs, embracing a soft and wobbly world, and when tragedy sharpens his perspective, scowls and bruises speak louder than words. When Charlie falls in love, cinematography and Emma Watson’s eyes do more work than any voiceover possibly could. Unfortunately, the last third of the movie leaves too much unsaid—which seems to be the fault of the source material.”

Review: Calvin Harris, 18 Months

“Harris has a signature sound when you hear his work plastered together.Trouble is, that sound is nothing to write home about—and the further you get from the dance floor, the more certain aspects of his method confound you. Listening to 18 Months alongside his first two albums, I Created Disco (2007) and Ready For the Weekend (2012), you might think they’re in reverse chronological order. His present melodies call to mind Philip Glass getting drunk and discovering Ableton Live, banging out repetitive chord structures while forgetting to add new ideas after the first minute.”

Spin NYC: A Visit to Another World

I lounge awhile in the Big Apple’s fanciest ping-pong club.

“I can’t compete with the stars of my college basement, but my slice is on today, giving me an edge over my girlfriend, who sends balls sailing in every direction. At first, we give in to the urge to run for them, but soon it becomes clear that our bucket will never empty. An employee wanders the floor, using an ingenious basket-on-a-stick device to grab what rolls away, dumping his collection into customers’ buckets from time to time (even in the mid-afternoon, there are a few other players; mostly tourists, I’d guess). I ask Gordon whether anyone’s ever slipped. ‘Not in three years. The balls crush under the pressure before you lose your balance.'”

The Floodgates Open: Yale Record Longer Piece Edition

A selection of my work for the Yale Record, the world’s oldest college humor magazine or maybe just the nation’s but if anyone is reading this and wants to correct me for sure I’ll think about them late at night before I drift off to sleep and I will smile a little smile. For what it’s worth.

Topics include AN INTERVIEW WITH FAMOUS MAN JEPH JACQUES, Pokemon, Harvard vs. Yale, and Mythbusters. For more fine work from all the writers of this publication, much of which now gets edited by myself, click HERE!

Memorable Moments in the History of the Harvard-Yale Game

1890: Mysterious time rift opens and transports both starting teams to the field of Super Bowl XXV, 100 years in the future, immediately after kickoff. Since helmets and 250-pound linebackers didn’t exist in the 19th century, seven Ivy Leaguers die in the ensuing collisions. Result: Yale’s bench beats Harvard’s bench 21-14.”

Pikachu’s Inner Monologue

“It has been—six days. And on the seventh day, I shall not rest, for the next chapter of my miserable life will be at hand. The hand of Ash will again discharge me, flinging me into mortal combat.”

An Interview With Jeph Jacques, Creator of Questionable Content

“This is definitely the first rock I’ve ever etched… This may be the most unusual thing I’ve signed now. I’m trying to think of anything weirder… well, I signed that baby once.”

You didn’t sign it with a knife, I hope.

“…No. (Christi: “There’s no carving in baby-signing.”) But I would have! I hate babies.”

Mythbusters Picks on Less Obvious Targets

Round Earth Theory: Starting with the secretive scribbles of Pythagoras, this myth was picked up by the infamous Ptolemy, who continued to spread it despite Biblical scholars’ sensible efforts to refute him. Have you seen the “curvature” of the Earth lately? Has anyone you know fallen off the bottom of the world and into space? Could our home planet really be…spherical??”

The Floodgates Open: Yale Herald Edition

My collected work for the Yale Herald up to this point, in reverse chronological order, including the cover story “Always Outnumbered, Never Outplayed”.

In this collection, I cover grade inflation, sports recruiting, poker with post-docs, Bjork, online journalism (meta!), Yale president Richard Levin, and other assorted subjects. Keep an eye out for my terrible prediction regarding the course of my school’s 2012 football season.

Continue reading

The Floodgates Open: WEEKEND Edition, Part II

(For Part I, click here).

This post contains my longer work for WEEKEND, including a recent cover story, in reverse chronological order. Enjoy!

Carpe Noctem: Science, Parties, and the Science of Parties

You can do it naked. You can do it drunk or sober. You can do it with strangers, or your closest friends. On your birthday, or someone else’s. But sooner or later, almost everyone does it. It’s in our nature. When it’s good, it’s really good, and when it’s bad, it’s still pretty good.

Chilling at The Game

“Most football games have scoring on both sides, actually.”

“You don’t say.”

Continue reading