Off Topic: What I Learned About Myself This Week from Pittsburgh Sports Radio

This has been a profoundly disturbing week for all members of the Penn State community, of which I consider myself part. I put in two tours of duty at the university, where I earned a Bachelor of Science and a Master of Fine Arts Degree. I also worked as a Graduate Assistant for a couple…

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Roadrunner Thrice: Jack Kerouac Meets The Velvet Underground On 128 When It’s Cold Outside

There are a number of recorded versions of "Roadrunner" by Jonathan Richman and the Modern Lovers, but this extended live version released as a single on Berserkly is the one that really does it for me. Richman takes the listener on a long ride around the highways of Massachusetts "late at night when it's cold…

Off Topic: Hate and War

Hate and war - the only things we got today An' if I close my eyes They will not go away You have to deal with it It is the currency -"Hate and War," The Clash Hard to believe, but it's 35 years since The Clash penned this song about society playing out in microcosm…

Off Topic: Don’t Shoot, I’m a Man!

Today, my adopted home of Pittsburgh is being overrun by the barbarians of willful Second Amendment misinterpretation. They operate under the name of the National Rifle Association, though their mandate appears to be the complete and unfettered ability of every citizen, regardless of mental competency, to carry whatever-the-hell firearm they damn well want wherever-the-hell they…

A Different Sort of X-Mas II (updated)

Tired of the same old Christmas rut? Me too--and then some! As a non-believer, I've gone through various stages since first walking out on an X-mas Mass, and the Church altogether, a little over 30 years ago, when a fat pig priest (didn't even have the requisite "sanctimonious smile") started talking A-bombs and calling down…