Biting The LifeSaver
Biting The LifeSaver

There is a heart-breaking sort of irony involved in consuming quickly a candy whose name implies salvation. Life Savers can’t save themselves, but they can save you.

Review: tUnE-yArDs – whokill
Review: tUnE-yArDs - whokill

Amidst all the attempts to describe, compare, and pigeonhole the work of Merrill Garbus it is easy to lose sight of the fact that tUnE-yArDs is one of the most unique musical projects to emerge in recent memory.

How Starburst Teaches Us How To Live
How Starburst Teaches Us How To Live

Similar to the way a medium organizes its message, the manner in which a package of Starburst is organized has profound effects on how it is experienced, and it is only by altering the formula that those effects become apparent.

Times Michael Bay Has Killed Me
Times Michael Bay Has Killed Me

As a director, Michael Bay is a man overwhelmingly concerned with making loud, violent, and overt filmic statements. Which is why he horrifies me.

The Three People You’ll Meet In Line For Coffee
The Three People You'll Meet In Line For Coffee

Like alcohol, coffee straddles the line between luxury and crutch, crossing briefly into the realms of fetish and political statement. What kind of coffee you drink – and how you drink it – says as much about you as what kind of car you drive.

Two Hundred Words On Hating Your Job
Two Hundred Words On Hating Your Job

Human beings, almost as a rule, secretly enjoy complaining about their jobs. Though voluntary and oftentimes rewarding, working falls under that unfortunate subset of obligations that, while necessary, rarely ceases to make us miserable. And that, I think, is exactly why we do it.

Review: Chikita Violenta – Tre3s
Review: Chikita Violenta - Tre3s

Though Chikita Violenta is a band from Mexico and Tre3s is an album recorded in Canada, there is very little on this release that feels particularly foreign.

Review: Shugo Tokumaru – Port Entropy
Review: Shugo Tokumaru - Port Entropy

To create Shugo Tokumaru, you must envision a world stripped of its pessimism.

Review: The Books – The Way Out
Review: The Books - The Way Out

The Way Out is an album about escape through unconventional means.

Review: The Decemberists – The King is Dead
Review: The Decemberists - The King is Dead

Is “The King is Dead” a transparent reference to Elvis or a not-so-subtle admission that the Decemberists are putting to bed their unrelenting lust for British sea shanties?

Review: Marnie Stern – s/t
Review: Marnie Stern - s/t

Possibly the best thing about Marnie Stern’s third outing is the merciful simplify of the album’s title.

Review: Nobunny – First Blood
Review: Nobunny - First Blood

Similar to Nobunny’s debut LP, 2008’s Love Visions, First Blood is split between the veritably pop and the authentically punk.

Review: The Arcade Fire – The Suburbs
Review: The Arcade Fire  - The Suburbs

The most important thing to understand about The Suburbs is that it’s Arcade Fire’s least great album. And it’s all our fault.

Something About Elevators
Something About Elevators

Similar to the proverbial Sexy Pizza Delivery Sex Romp, the popular fantasy of the plummeting elevator is both rare and improbable.

Review: Best Coast – Crazy For You
Review: Best Coast - Crazy For You

Perhaps, the most apt and potentially trite criticism that can be made about Best Coast’s debut LP is that it’s too simple.

A History of Gleaning and Its Potential Errors
A History of Gleaning and Its Potential Errors

The acquisition method known as gleaning possesses roots as far back as the writing of Deuteronomy and Leviticus. Penny-pinching farmers, God decreed, must resist the urge to harvest the entirety of their fields.

What It Means To Sweat
What It Means To Sweat

The following is how I understand sweating, and heat, and what happens when you are exposed to a little too much of both. This is a concise history of sweating.

On Loving (and Not Loving) the MTA
On Loving (and Not Loving) the MTA

“Well, move the damn bus then.”

On Watching Arcade Fire Play Live from My Bedroom
On Watching Arcade Fire Play Live from My Bedroom

The typical, maligned vision of the indie music fan revolves around not their cultivated taste, but the seemingly-unavoidable musical elitism that that cultivated taste induces. They know too damn much.

Tracking Inflation Via The Food of My Youth
Tracking Inflation Via The Food of My Youth

Even prior to continuous string of awful financial downturns that have defined our past few years, many of us already knew what was up: Things were about to get expensive. I saw it in the candy.

On The Nature of Fear as It Relates to the Bedbug
On The Nature of Fear as It Relates to the Bedbug

I don’t reckon I ever consciously had that One Great Fear, but I know for certain that, whatever it was, its status has of late been usurped by bedbugs, the existence of which fills me with dread beyond dread.

An Allegory for Life on the Dirty Paws of A Cat
An Allegory for Life on the Dirty Paws of A Cat

Animal Control doesn’t handle cats. This is what I learned first as I stood, phone to ear, staring the orange mass of grime and fur moaning under a white Cadillac.

Confessions of an Unrepentant Door Hoverer
Confessions of an Unrepentant Door Hoverer

My name is Ricardo. I am a door hoverer.

On The Trouble With Shaving
On The Trouble With Shaving

When boys make the transition into men, they do so with a subtle blend of confusion, pain, and anticipation. Manhood means great things. It means jobs and handshakes and lawnmowers, suits and shoe polish. But it also means aches and emissions, cracks of voice and spurts of height.

On Getting Hurt (While Uninsured)
On Getting Hurt (While Uninsured)

There are a lot of scary words thrown around in emergency rooms – “surgery”, “dead”, “pregnant”, etc – but insurance is probably the most horrifying.

Why You Don’t Actually Need a Job
Why You Don't Actually Need a Job

Unemployment sucks. It’s always sucked: Bereft of cash and inundated with spare time, the life of the unemployed can be said to resemble an almost Biblical purgatory.

The Painful Truth of Playing College
The Painful Truth of Playing College

College was a dream. This is perhaps the only ounce of certainty gleaned since graduating from higher education. Where college was loose and and free and slightly heavenly, Real Life so far seems entirely the opposite.

An Argument for Black Friday
An Argument for Black Friday

The Black Friday shopper is a hero.

Lessons on How to (Civilly) Disobey Thoreau
Lessons on How to (Civilly) Disobey Thoreau

It’s hard for most people to travel though life without knocking shoulders at least once with Henry David Thoreau. Somehow, and mostly via his oft-celebrated Walden, Thoreau has managed to dip his finger in every topic remotely related to A Well Lived Life.

Birthdays When You Are Broke and Apathetic
Birthdays When You Are Broke and Apathetic

For the broke and insolvent, few events are more dangerous than another’s birthday.

What The Things I Bought Today Say About Me
What The Things I Bought Today Say About Me

At a time when what you buy is equated with who you are, few things are more personally enlightening than a trip to the store.

Consider the Anti-Resolution
Consider the Anti-Resolution

If the existence of New Year’s resolutions prove anything, it’s that we are naturally optimistic.

Know your fringe movements: Luddism

I had initially intended this post to be a brief reaction piece to what I thought was a recent article by Wired’s Tony Long. Turns out the article is now over five years old and not entirely worth revisiting again – if only because it lacks focus and isn’t entirely coherent. I’ll refer to it in brief. Instead, I [...]

A step towards the holodeck, and why I'm cautiously optimistic about Microsoft's Project Natal

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oACt9R9z37U] A number of emotions took hold of me as I watched (and re-watched) the various demonstrations of Microsoft’s new Project Natal “controller.” Shock gave way to amazement, amazement, to disbelief, disbelief to skepticism. Eventually, that skepticism gave way to an acute sense of cynicism: Project Natal couldn’t possibly work. It just couldn’t. And yet, [...]