Taking a Week Off

I’m taking the next week or so off from writing here. See you back in these parts sometime toward the middle of next week. Godspeed.

Space Elevators

Back in the olden days of 1997, my then-roommate Colin R. and I used to bandy about the idea, long discussed but never enacted, of a space elevator: a huge apparatus, anchored in space, that’d haul ships and people from the earth up into the lower reaches of the solar system. Alas, Colin sends word […]

A Meal for the Ages

First, put down “the 8500 calorie manwich.” Then polish off a Hostess wedding cake. Go on, I dare you. (Hostess cake link via Dana.)

My New Article on Teaching English in Taiwan

Everything you ever wanted to know about teaching English here in Taiwan is covered in an article I recently wrote for the Transitions Abroad Web site. It begins: Made in Taiwan. You’ve seen that phrase, no doubt, affixed to consumer products of all stripes–plastic toys, sleek electronics, sporting goods. But an image of Taiwan itself, […]

Checking in on Baseball

With October approaching and my beloved Braves on cruise control, I asked by buddy Miles B. for his thoughts on the season. Miles has a unique perspective–as a die-hard Yankees fan residing in Boston, he’s truly living behind enemy lines. I asked him about his Bronx Bombers, and I aired my growing distaste for the […]

High School Seniors and Other Silly People

Here’re some unintentionally funny high school seniors’ photos. And here’re some more unwittingly silly images–posted by someone who found the subjects’ memory card in a cab. I haven’t had this much fun since losers.org was in its heyday. Ain’t the Web great?

Personality Tests

The incomparable Malcolm Gladwell’s got an article on personality tests in the most recent New Yoker. Kottke’s got a snippet here. My brother posits that you can gauge an individual’s true nature by the way he or she treats restaurant wait staff. I think he’s on to something.

Funny Chinglish Names

Jill and I teach kids between the ages of 5 and 13. And they often have funny names. That’s because when they start studying English, which is usually when they’re 5 or 6 or 7, they get to choose their own English names. Why? Because their Chinese names probably don’t have a romanized equivalent, and […]

All I Want for Christmas…

…is an inflatable pub. Seriously. I mean it. I need an inflatable pub. Dear readers, please pitch in and buy me an inflatable pub. I want nothing more and nothing less this holiday season. (Okay, truth be told, I’m also dying for a banana guard. And a Roulette Chocolate.)

The Grim Realities of the Modern Book Publishing World…

…are detailed in this interesting Columbia Journalism Review article, “The Education of Stacy Sullivan: A First-Time Nonfiction Author Learns That Getting Published Is Not Necessarily the Hard Part.”