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Roadtrips and Restrooms

The following things happened when I joined my friend Jared on a trip to Arkansas to help our friend Andrew move the last of his stuff to his new place in Texas.   –During a pit stop, Jared points and says, “Andrew just came out of the women’s bathroom!” Andrew blinked in response, but offered no shame or explanation.   […]

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Father’s Day Grammer Check

I always do grammar quizzes when I see them for the same reason athletes pick up weights and put them back down: it’s the only way I’ll get better. Grammarly has, hands down, the most outstanding Father’s Day related grammar quiz ever. (Competition is probably not very steep for that particular hyperbole.) //cdn.playbuzz.com/widget/feed.js They have an online grammar checker that you should check out.

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Anyone Else Sleep Better During Storms?

Thunder feels like home. I’m from the country, a little place that’s only marked by a single sign that you might see going in our out. (It says “Caviness.”) As a boy, one of my favorite things was watching the clouds outside my window during storms. And, let me tell you, we had some storms. I didn’t know it at the time, but the storm activity in that area is unusually high. I’ve failed to find any record of this, but locals will tell you what I learned over the years: there’s an abundance of lightning in my home town. I remember visiting home a few years ago and asking my dad why there was so much thunder. A crack every two seconds for more than half an hour is unusual, right? My dad laughed and said I’d been away too long. On my vacation last year, the wife and I stayed in a train car that had been converted into a hotel room. (Sort of. I think it was a work in progress.) A metal train car. And there was a storm of epic proportions that evening that was really loud for those of us sleeping in a big tin can. Rain hit the walls of that train car like a million hammers falling on us, lightning lit up windows on every side, and thunder rattled the walls and shook the ground. I slept like a baby. During the […]

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‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ and Why I’m Happy to be a Loser

I’m thirty-two years old. Last week, I got into a Totally Serious Conversation about whether or not Batman could beat Superman. (He can’t.) Yes, I know about Batman’s kryptonite ring.  I read about it in this comic. Go away. I saw Guardians of the Galaxy last Friday night with my wife. She’s not a loser, like me, but she has a wonderful fondness in her heart for losers. (Like me.) We both loved this film, but the question I wrestled with was something I knew she couldn’t understand: which Infinity Gem did they have? Time to call in the big guns. I watched the film twenty hours later with my high school buddy, James. We’ve been unashamed losers since we were in the same Boy Scout troop, back when owning a comic book collection got you thrown into a locker and referencing Star Trek made girls run away in terror. We earned our stripes, paving the way for today’s “nerd culture” and knowing that society would one day appreciate our love of adventure and creative story-telling. Not yet middle-aged, we stand like grizzled veterans from a forgotten culture war. While the popularity of the New Kids on the Block has leveled off, people are clawing through each other at Comic-Cons to get close to comic book artists, retired sci-fi actors, and anyone dressed as Power Girl. James and I outlasted our enemies and stand atop a world that we created. […]

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The Inquisition of Jonny ("Come and Knock on Our Door…")

When I met Jonny, it wasn’t because I wanted to get to know people or make friends. No. It was because he was dating my college friend, Jennifer, and it was time to sniff him out. The meet went down at IHOP. A few of us from Jennifer’s college days were there. We looked him up and down with our arms crossed, making silent observations through our slitted, steely eyes. Who did he think he was, putting his arm around her like that? How did we know we could trust him? Obviously, we didn’t. Trust must be earned, and there is no more rigorous arena than the scrutiny of your girlfriend’s protective circle. The inquisition began lightly. He seemed nice. Easy to laugh. Considerate. Didn’t talk too much. All good things — but was it an act? I needed to establish dominance. Fortunately, the conversation turned to the subject of getting burned by spilled coffee. (All of us love coffee, and none of us claim to coordinated.) “Yes, that would hurt, a lot. Don’t you think, Jonny?” I saw him nod his head. “Which reminds me, some of us are very protective of Jennifer. Careful with that coffee.” His eyes widened. He understood. We were no group of simple buddies. This was war, and he was our prisoner. The rest of the evening passed without incident. Jonny is a fun guy, and he always looked to Jennifer’s immediate needs. Not […]

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