I’ve never been to Disney World. Or Disneyland, Knott’s Berry Farm, Coney Island, Cedar Point, Dollywood, or any of the Six Flags amusement parks. If you think I’m whining about my poor, deprived childhood, let me assure you that I’m not. I’ve been to other theme parks over the years. And if I wanted to […]
Read more "For Your Amusement (Or, a brief digression about the Sears Wish Book, naked ladies prior to the Internet Age, and creepy abandoned amusement parks)"
I’ve always said that the title for my memoirs would be But I Digress… because of my penchant for tangential thinking and apparent inability to stay on-topic. But there is another title contender. Not a Genius, by Firewater (or whatever name I might be using when the time comes). While it’s true that I’m not […]
Read more "Not a Genius (Or, a brief digression about the importance of reading comprehension, a good memory, and learning the meaning behind the Socratic dictum)"
Not long ago I created a new category on my WordPress account and included a lot of my old posts in it. The category is, of course, A Grim Dystopian Future. Full disclosure: I included the article “A” so that the category would land near the top of my list, just under the category 10 […]
Read more "A Grim Dystopian Future (Or, a brief digression about WordPress categories, three-act story structure, and the reasons why so many of our stories have such bleak settings)"
I was at our local hospital’s imaging center a few days ago for a couple of CT scans. I’ll spare you the reasons at this time, because that’s not the point of this post. If it becomes something worth talking about, you can rest assured that I will. My wife and I were sitting in […]
Read more "Don’t Touch That Dial (Or, a brief digression about waiting room televisions, HGTV, and the reasons why the pursuit of knowledge is more fun than knowledge itself)"
According to Psychology Today, the term cognitive dissonance is defined thusly: Cognitive dissonance is a term for the state of discomfort felt when two or more modes of thought contradict each other. The clashing cognitions may include ideas, beliefs, or the knowledge that one has behaved in a certain way. I’ve been aware of the […]
Read more "Cognitive Dissonance (or: a brief digression about God, the Scientific Method, a family history with alcoholism, and a belated requiem for The Cars’ Benjamin Orr)"
You like movies? I like movies. Some movies, anyway. Stories told through the medium of motion pictures tend to be memorable because they engage the senses of the person watching them. Sight and sound, certainly. These are the two obvious senses engaged. But, I think I can make a case for the other senses as […]
Read more "Cinematic Perspective (Or, a brief digression about sensory engagement in movies, writing dialogue and narrative POV)"
Like so many of you out there, I’ve used the term “guys” when referring to groups of people comprised of both sexes. I never once thought the word would make anyone feel excluded. In fact, I’ve always considered it a gender-neutral term. It’s not, however. The first Merriam-Webster definition of guy is “MAN; FELLOW.” While […]
Read more "“Hey, Guys!” (Or: a brief digression about gender-neutral terms and how an old dog can learn a new trick)"
During the last six months of 2021, I managed to get 10,000 words written of a novel-length story idea that’s been percolating in the back of my head for more than twenty years. Since I average 250 words per printed page (double-spaced, 12-point type), that’s forty pages. Not a bad start. These forty pages are […]
Read more "A Story is Born (or: a brief digression about fiction writing, idea generation, and Gilmore Girls)"
This bit of tangential thinking was forced upon me by the word “nonplussed.” Which reminds me (a tangent of a tangent—I should coin a word for this definition), of Sesame Street, a show that existed even when I was young, kids, only with more Big Bird and no Elmo. The show would always announce that […]
Read more "Nonplussed about Unpaired Words (or: a brief digression about problematic words, Euclidian geometry, and Sesame Street)"
My personal pursuit of happiness involves several variables, two of the most important being looking forward and looking back. The looking forward component involves the planning for—and anticipation of—future events or activities. This can be special moments, such as birthdays, anniversaries, holidays or vacations. Or, it could be the release of an anticipated movie, book […]
Read more "Tiger-Man, Tiger-Man…Does Whatever a Tiger Can? (or: a brief digression about the pursuit of happiness, Steve Ditko, and how memories sometimes resurface without warning)"