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Monthly Archives: April 2017

The War for Mars United, Chapter 15: The Octagon Office: The Ten-Percenters

April 28, 2017, 9:02 pm

Prime Minister Norine Maciel reviewed status with Chatterjee in the communications room next to the Octagon Office. NATO could possibly send a fleet of smaller aircraft that could travel faster than the mothership. But such planes would hardly be battle-ready after traveling through space that way. In any event, NATO had no such plans. Plans! Norine thought. How was she supposed to plan this now? What more could she do to keep the other dominoes steady, hold the disgruntled corporations […]

Baby, I Can Drive With Dar

April 27, 2017, 10:48 am

I wonder how many of my fellow parents of special-needs kids dread driving with their little love-ball of behaviors? I figure that for every autistic kid who takes to a car like a happy panting dog, there must be another autistic kid who takes to a car like a freaked-out cat. So let me just express my gratitude to the cosmos and the gods that we’ve got a dog here. Dar even likes to stick his head out of the […]

100 Reasons Why: A #100daysofshame Post That Will Annoy Liberals AND Conservatives

April 24, 2017, 5:18 pm

This post has serious beef with both America’s left-wingers and America’s right-wingers. As we approach President Donald Trump’s 100th day in office, the hashtag #100daysofshame is trending harder than Kendrick Lamar. But there’s a big problem: conservatives use the hashtag to laugh at liberal crybabies, and liberals use it to express their frustration with all of Trump’s follies and foibles. I’ve written this post because I don’t agree with either approach. When liberals lump in every one of Trump’s decisions […]

The War for Mars United, Chapter 14: A Crater Rim

April 21, 2017, 3:38 pm

Julia Maciel peered down off of the sheer cliff. Yeah. Ha ha. No way. Julia and her – what were they, co-travelers? – had followed the tracks of the airplane. At first it was a relief to know that the earth hadn’t just swallowed it up. Or that someone had somehow dismantled it piece by piece within an hour. Yet the truth wasn’t that much better. Based on the tire tracks, someone had rolled the jet off of the rim […]

Watching “Sesame Street” Introduce Julia

April 19, 2017, 4:50 pm

Last week, my wife, my two kids, and me did something for the first time: we sat down together as a family, in the living room, to watch a TV show. Okay, maybe it wasn’t exactly the first time. When Dar and I watch sports, the other two drift in and out, and I’m pretty sure all of them have been in the room at the same time as me. The same thing happens when R watches his kiddie shows and […]

Paging Nicolas Cage. The “S-Town” Movie Needs You.

April 17, 2017, 12:51 pm

This post contains spoilers for Serial and This American Life’s “S-Town” and should be read only by people who have finished all seven chapters of the podcast. Not every podcast deserves to be even a single episode of a TV show, never mind a movie. “S-Town” may be such a podcast, though it depends how a studio would do it. One major obstacle is that the story doesn’t have the sort of “third act” (loosely, a film’s final 30 minutes) […]

The War for Mars United, Chapter 13: The Ghetto: Searching for Rhodes

April 14, 2017, 6:58 am

The day after NATO’s final vote, Martina worked eight hours at the Space Port without major incident. From there, she did not go home. Instead, Martina remained in military uniform, tied up her hair, put it under a military beret, donned sunglasses, and set off for the bad part of New Jerusalem. Blocks upon blocks of warehouses and townhouses, many abandoned to their broken windows and rusty pipes. There, Martina calmly walked amongst the homeless people and whores and pimps. […]

Dar’s New Superpower

April 12, 2017, 2:51 pm

Dar just gained a super-power. At least, that’s how it feels. For me, anyway, but I also think, for him. I mentioned before that we’ve been doing “intense PT-ing.” Without getting into all the gory details, he’s been wearing an alarm that catches wet undies, and when we hear it, we have to make the idea of using the potty GREAT and the idea of not using it to be, ah, aversive. The first two weeks were torture and aversive […]

Dear TV, Stop Postponing Shows

April 10, 2017, 3:43 pm

Hit TV shows and great TV shows used to be predictable in at least one way: you knew when they would be on. Not anymore. I don’t mean their time slots; I mean the month they get aired. To be clear, I’m not talking about reviving the 20th century network model, where shows would start a new season in September or October, and then run weekly, with occasional reruns, until roughly May. A few shows still do this, like Scandal and […]

The War for Mars United, Chapter 12: The Senate Chambers

April 7, 2017, 10:10 pm

Prime Minister Maciel loathed speaking before the Senate. All the Senators would be preening, showboating, making points they’d made a hundred times before. Too many critics on both worlds had declared that she couldn’t make a case for war on TV, in front of a deliberative body. NATO had grown weary of voting, and now, with the A.A. mothership a week away from Earth, the window of possibility was closing. NATO had promised to watch the Senate speech and debate […]