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Monthly Archives: December 2014

The Year in Autism Here

December 31, 2014, 1:00 am

The blog began one year ago tomorrow. I’m taking a little look back. Happy New Year! January 8: 20 things I made a list. I brought it to his pediatrician, then to the child development specialist he sent me to, then to a doctor in Walnut Creek that she sent me to. To this day I’m sure the list made a difference. I would show it to a professional and they would say “uh-huh, uh-huh, uh-huh.” They would never say […]

The Year in Media/Movies Here

December 29, 2014, 1:00 am

My first clip show! And what perfect timing, in this holiday-stuffed week that rolls us from 2014 into 2015. This blog began a mere year ago on a wing and a prayer…could I succeed where so many had failed? Could I really write 1000 new words three different times a week? That weren’t embarrassing to read? Well, up until this week, mission sometimes accomplished…as this may show… January 6: The Unbearable Stillness of Being a Slave Another generation had its […]

My time in Cuba

December 26, 2014, 1:00 am

As you may have heard, Cuba and the United States are taking steps to normalize relations. The press is filled with speculation about Cubans flooding American tourist destinations and American companies setting up shop in Cuba. This week also marks the 56th anniversary of the culmination of the July 26th Movement, led by Fidel Castro and Che Guevara – the week of their successful coup d’etat over the Batista dictatorship. It seems like a good time to recall my March […]

Merry Christmas

December 24, 2014, 1:00 am

As a child, Christmas Eve was in many ways my favorite day of the year. Our holiday tradition meant that my mother and I would either host or travel to one of her siblings’ houses for a big meal and the opening of gifts. All of my cousins and me would play games and try to stay up until midnight, when we might go with our grandmother to Midnight Mass. On Christmas Day itself, my mother and I, being a […]

An Open Letter From Hollywood to the Media

December 22, 2014, 8:03 am

December 22, 2014 To our friends at Variety, The Hollywood Reporter, Deadline, The Los Angeles Times, TMZ, Vanity Fair, Rolling Stone, Vulture, Entertainment Weekly, The Huffington Post, Slate, Salon, Vox, Buzzfeed, USA Today, The New York Times, and other members of the press: Effective immediately and through January 31, 2015, we, the members of the below-signed unions, businesses, and trade organizations, will no longer actively assist sources and websites that (re)publish and/or (re)tweet partial or complete content from private records […]

The Week Millennials Went “Whaaaaaaaaaaaat?”

December 19, 2014, 5:37 pm

If American millennials – defined as born between 1982 and 2004 – have a political hero, it’s certainly not Barack Obama, Rand Paul, or any other institutional politician like that. It’s Edward Snowden. He’s unpopular in some twentysomething quarters, but the majority of young adults appreciate how he pulled the veil from intrusive and illegal surveillance operations by governments. Snowden’s 2013 revelations (were they only 18 months ago?) bolster a narrative that has existed at least since Facebook overtook Myspace: […]

“I Had Autism” – one of my students

December 17, 2014, 1:06 pm

Here’s a not-particularly-well-guarded secret from academia: all of us professors hope to have at least one active, engaged student who answers our rhetorical questions, pulls the other students into Socratic dialogue, and demonstrates reflection on the required reading. If you told me in advance that a particular semester’s assemblage of students just wouldn’t have such a student, I’d seriously reconsider the value in my making any kind of effort with the class. Now that the grades are all submitted for […]

Broadcast News: The Show

December 15, 2014, 11:54 am

One point, perhaps the point, of HBO’s The Newsroom is that the media gives you only one side of a story, and rarely the most interesting or useful side at that. Last night The Newsroom aired its series finale, and reactions from the major industry sites, who mostly despise the show, wound up ironically and exactly proving the show’s point: they failed to give this story the analysis it deserves. Who do I mean? Oh, Entertainment Weekly, Vulture, Grantland, Variety, […]

Walls, Doors, and the CIA in the 2000s

December 12, 2014, 4:09 pm

22 years ago this weekend, a new movie got a splashy nationwide release, two months before it was nominated for a Best Picture Oscar. I happened to be living in Washington D.C. at the time, and happened to attend the opening weekend of the film with a couple of friends who had only recently been decommissioned from the United States Marines, where they’d served with honor in the first Gulf War. After seeing A Few Good Men, we absconded to […]

Keyboard Courage and Autism

December 10, 2014, 12:29 pm

The other day, my friend Kenyatta, who I’ve known since we were about six years old, posted to Facebook a link to ABC 7’s coverage of the #blacklivesmatter protests happening in our little corner of the world. Channel 7 is ABC’s Bay Area affiliate, and with its top-rated, sister radio station, KGO, it reaches more Bay Areans than any other network. Kenyatta wasn’t focused on ABC’s coverage per se; along with the link his only comment was, “I got caught […]