In 1989, when I was a student living in a dormitory at New York University, I was assigned a new roommate. Usually, you get to choose who you live with, but I hadn’t named a preference, so the housing office assigned me a random match. Come September, we met for the first time, when a… Read More How to burn flags and influence people
My daughter believes that – this very morning – a giant mystical hare visited central London, dodging traffic to come up the stairs in our building, straight to our door and left a big basket of chocolates and small toys outside just for her. This is the same kid who questions core premises of Christianity,… Read More A magical rabbit? Are kids stupid?
The UK is probably only days away from crashing out of the EU. God, what a disaster it will be! The ports will become gridlocked. Supplies will disappear from store shelves. Flights in and out of the country suspended. There are worries that food will become so scarce that there are plans to call out… Read More Devastation fascination – disasters I secretly pine for
You may have seen that Donald Trump is now signing Bibles, as if he were the author of the good book. But when I saw pictures from news coverage of this holy event, one thing that surprised me was that one of the Bibles was labelled “The Holy Bible: Military Challenge Edition.” I hadn’t realised… Read More The Donald Trump signed bible collection
Uncle Jack A few years back, I had the good fortune to get to know my wife’s great-uncle, Jack. We would see him whenever we went to visit her family in California. Jack was well into his 80s and he lived in a little studio apartment that stood over the garage of the family’s beach house.… Read More Lola Jacuzzi and life’s whirlpool of regret
It’s a Wonderful Life. Elf. Miracle on 34th Street. Die Hard. They’re all classic Christmas movies, but that last one seems to give some people trouble. Not everyone recognises Die Hard as an actual Christmas film. If you Google the phrase “Christmas movies” you’ll see Die Hard on pretty much any list that comes up.… Read More Yes, Die Hard *IS* a Christmas movie. Here’s proof:
It wasn’t too long ago that there was a lot of online chatter among conservative American evangelicals about how they believed that President Barack Obama was the anti-Christ – the personification of the devil on earth. If you don’t recall, or you’d like a sampling to remind you that this really was a thing, have… Read More Uncovering the anti-Christ. Yes, really. I’ve figured it out.
I first heard of Johnny Goobello one evening many years ago, when I was around 17 years old – at a birthday celebration for my father. Everyone was there that night – siblings, cousins, aunts, great aunts, great cousins, our family priest. Everybody. The cake came out and the room was buzzing, with everyone saying… Read More The ballad of Johnny Goobello
Every day, I walk our nine year old daughter to school. It’s a 15 minute walk, which gives us a nice amount of time to talk. I take advantage of the opportunity to teach her about an aspect of the world – a different topic every day. I call it Dadsplaining. The way I see… Read More Dadsplaining: I explain the world to my kid (Boris Johnson edition)
Recently, the day after the London Bridge terrorist attack, feeling depressed and under siege (I live in London, not far away from the incident) I posted a note to a friend on Facebook about how it’s important not to change our way of life in response to horrors like this – to not give in… Read More Some advice on not being a social media asshole after a terrorist attack