Ten Yards, Loss of Down For Clipping

Jarrett Murphy, in the Village Voice today, complains that the media was quick to cover the infamous NBA brawl, and to put it into saturation rotation. He enumerates the coverage in newspapers and TV broadcasts, inferring that it was as salacious as it was unwarranted. (Not “hard news!” Not hard news! Foul! Is anyone listening?) […]

Scooper & Scooped

One of the things we miss most about TMFTML was his Monday-morning quarterbacking of the Sunday New York Times. (The critic became the critiqued, and that’s a helluva promotion! We like to believe we beat the Times to the punch bowl, though.) TMFTML somehow managed to scan and summarize the whole paper—usually in the yellow […]

Thankful For: Good Design!

We were chatting yesterday with an editor at the New Yorker, and the conversation turned on the role of design in modern magazines. The New Yorker, of course, is an old-fashioned magazine that has not changed in any major way for more than seventy-five years. To be sure, there were some dramatic touches added under […]

Radio Flyer

Last night, the wife noticed that WCAL has now changed hands, and is being operated by MPR. The wife is a contrarian in all things, and she said the new announcers sounded “robotic.” But the wife is, like us, a St. Olaf graduate. She is predisposed to resist change (like us), especially when it involves […]

God Bless Me

This weekend, I was hanging around the house trying to beat this nasty rhinovirus—a convenient excuse for laziness, I know. I happened to be listening to MPR, and felt lucky to have the house and the radio to myself for “This American Life,” one of life’s serendipitious little pleasures. (I wouldn’t want to arrange my […]

Desert Island Duffel

Boehlke, the Jungle Theater’s artistic director, is currently hard at work reprising Under Milk Wood, Dylan Thomas’ radio play that takes place in Llareggub, a fictional Welch fishing village. Despite its name, which happens to be “bugger all” spelled backwards, Llareggub is a quaint, charming place where everyday folks just happen to speak in Thomas’ […]

Susanna Clarke

That eight-hundred-page bulge in many a geek’s stocking this year is Clarke’s first novel, Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell, whose titular characters are magicians who decide to redirect British history. Clarke’s incredibly detailed and ambitious work weaves real and imagined history, mythology, and period manners into a sly, often humorous narrative. Her book has been […]

The Life Aquatic With Steve Zissou

A welcome Christmas gift from Wes.If you measured the success of a film director by the number of cool actors who stand in line to work with him, Wes Anderson would surely win by a long shot. And why not? If you pay close attention, you quickly understand why a film like Rushmore or The […]

Mu Daiko's Taiko Blizzard

According to Japanese folklore, Taiko drums can carry the prayers of their players to heaven. As disciples of this tradition, this collection of drummers use enough force to wake the Samurai spirits who initiated this ritual. The annual Taiko Blizzard festival—featuring Mu Performing Arts’ Daiko drum core and the renowned Winnipeg-based Fubuki Daiko squad—blends pulsating […]

Ballet of The Dolls' Cinderalla and The Glass Slipper

So maybe some of us do want sparkle and magic at the theater this time of year—and that’s OK! Especially if it’s done by Dolls frontman and master choreographer Myron Johnson, who playfully integrates old-fashioned ballroom dance and avant-garde compositions, giving his work an off-kilter texture. His throwback charms are well-suited for revitalizing a familiar […]