Thirteen years ago, at the age of seventeen, I saw the opening for Final Fantasy VII for the first time. I was so excited with the opening sequence (remember this game’s graphics were incredible for the time) that I cut class for a week* and barreled through the first disk. The game itself, if you … Continue reading

The customer is always right, and this jerk is a customer

Legendary radio and television comedian Jack Benny has been on my ‘to do’ list of Idler topics for a little while, and what better time of year to highlight what is still the funniest Christmas TV show I have ever seen: the 1960 “Christmas Shopping” episode of The Jack Benny Program. As a child I … Continue reading

Cardinal Dreams

Cardinal Dreams 1. Firebird, Thunderbird, Sunbird they all seemed the same to me their headlights like eyes unmoving, blank. 2. The Phoenix Center in downtown Pontiac, somewhere near the Fiero plant and Fischer Body where Johnny Cash worked three weeks alongside Abuelito, building the 1951 models. 3. Johnny Cash joining the Air Force, Abuelito’s old … Continue reading

On (not) eating chocolate

If it’s not already obvious here at “The F Word,” let me say it: I refuse to diet. I think it is a fine way to lose weight, if that is your goal. However, as a daily eating habit, I just cannot force myself to go without carbs or without meat or without food in … Continue reading

Sergeant pepper and my questionable knife skills

I loved the chili that I made in my slow-cooker so much that I wanted to give the slow-cooker another try. I wanted to do a roast or some sort of chicken, but, as usual, I ended up choosing a soup. There’s nothing else like soup when the temperature drops below thirty and when you … Continue reading

December 13-18, 2010

Maybe, just maybe, the greatest Christmas song ever? Well, maybe not, but Jimmy Fallon and Horatio Sanz have Mike Vincent saying “I wish it was Christmas”

You think you know what’s coming, but you’re wrong. Kevin Mattison writes about the complex, unexpected characters of Belgian filmmakers Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne in “The eye of God”

Everyday life in the modern world is hard. Especially when you’re an octopus. Andrew Simone plays Octodad in “A day in the life”

After a lifetime of being nice, this Christmas, Ana Holguin reclaims her inner Grinch. Read “More coal, please!” (And pray that she doesn’t kick you in those shoes.)

It’s not really about playing third base in a skirt, Angela Vasquez-Giroux says, it’s about being better than you. (Although the skirt is really quite comfortable, short-pants man.) Read “Doing everything you do, in a skirt, or, Some thoughts on being a girl, doing boy things”

In “The F Word,” Jill Kolongowski makes butternut squash soup, even though she’s not totally sure that she likes butternut squash. Or shallots. Read “The butternut squash battle”

I wish it was Christmas

The original clip is slightly hard to miss—four men dressed in matching sweaters, singing and playing a little ditty about Christmas. It was on Saturday Night Live in the 90s. The actors were Jimmy Fallon, Horatio Sanz, Tracy Morgan, and Chris Kattan. The song was titled “I Wish It Was Christmas Today.” You sorta can’t … Continue reading

The eye of God

Olivier runs a woodshop where he takes in juvenile delinquents and teaches them the trade.  He is a quiet, humble man, dedicated to his work.  One day a woman enters his shop with a new boy.  He needs a job, but Olivier refuses to take him.  He says he has nothing available, but quickly follows … Continue reading

A day in the life

This morning, around eleven, I rolled out of bed and into my computer chair to peruse this morning’s news. I took a sip of water—only to realize it was from yesterday evening—when it struck me: I hadn’t written this week’s Idler piece. So, I rolled up my sleeves, gave myself a good stretch, and promptly … Continue reading

More coal, please!

In our Western mythos we tend to believe that Christmastime is transformational to the personality. Scrooge metamorphosed from naughty to nice. The Grinch’s heart grew three sizes. For the most part, traits like nastiness, selfishness, general bluntness or impoliteness are traded for caring, empathy, generosity and good cheer this time of year. This Christmas season … Continue reading