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Monthly Archives: May 2014

Fantastic Beasts: Field Guide

Her jaw snaps decisively at the treat offered to her and I immediately recognize that jaw’s ability to snap me decisively in half if the opportunity arose.

Going Home

I am no stranger to nostalgia. My mom tells me that when I was younger I used to hug the Christmas tree after it had been taken down and dragged to the curb.

The House

I felt helpless and a bit stupid standing out there in the dark. It dawned on me that this wasn’t like my childhood doll house or some story I was just making up.

Nala

Fortunately, Nala rather liked me as well, which was very good news because Nala was not always the easiest cat to deal with in her younger years.

The Small Things That Scare Us

Ticks are tiny mini-monsters, basically the equivalent of the radioactive spider that bit Peter Parker except they carry Lyme disease and not superpowers.

Lessons in Monstrosity

I know it’s illegal, but do I care enough to prevent it when I see it? Does he want us to stop him? Will saying something be more trouble than it’s worth?

Revise, Revise

Revise, Revise

by | May 25, 2014

When an idea is still inside me and dormant, I can control it completely. Once I let the beast go, it seems much tamer and so much more trivial.

Scar Stories

Scar Stories

Lauren tries to climb over one-and-a-half-foot slab of concrete to higher ground. Even more minimalist version: Lauren attempts to climb one stair.

The One That Made It

The One That Made It

I spent a lot of second grade working on damp purple worksheets and trying not to think about my feet. Because once I started thinking about my feet, I couldn’t stop.

(hum(an)imal)

(hum(an)imal)

Many questions about the similarities and differences between humans and other animals boil down to questions of religious significance.

Apes, Beasts, and Beluga Whales

We all knew what we were. Sarah and I preferred to be beluga whales. It sounded more elegant than the other options. My brother was an ape, clearly.

Gremlin

Gremlin

The speaker said, “I have found that my elite athletes typically have a gremlin—something from their past that creates work ethic and an axe to grind.”

Fantastic Beasts

24-year-olds should not spend such a large chunk of a Saturday holed up around a table, eating nachos and rolling for critical hits.

For He Spoke

For He Spoke

My father-in-law likes to say he would pay to hear James Earl Jones read the phonebook. Who would pay to hear me read anything?

A Klingon and a Ferengi Walk into a Bar…

A Klingon and a Ferengi Walk into a Bar…

Maybe the purpose of the show isn’t to revel in physical extremes, but to explore how creatures with disparate values interact and find common ground.

Obituary for Big Blue

Obituary for Big Blue

Affectionately known as “Big Blue” and “The Behemoth” to those who knew her best, the Savana was celebrated by nearly all who came into contact with her.

Untamed

The beasts in my life are not external. There are no monsters that I have to defeat. There is no dragon standing in my way, blocking my path. There is only me.

Joy in the Midst

“You only live once.” Strange how a phrase used to fight death has no place in death’s presence. It has no place because living once is a tragedy.

B=F: Confessions of an Imposter

B=F: Confessions of an Imposter

Finally the right paper lands in my hands, with the lowest grade in the class circled in red at the top. I quickly and quietly tuck the first page behind the rest.

Etching No. 43

Etching No. 43

A girl, age four, is in bed with the quilt scrunched up to her chin. Her blond curls quiver. She is petrified. There is a monster in the closet.

My Woman of Valor

My Woman of Valor

My mom is a beast. My mom has kicked cancer in the teeth and runs triathlons. Not quite simultaneously, but close.

Blue Ruin

Blue Ruin

“The violence portrayed in the film is brutal and graphic. It is by no means glorified and its futility resonates as a major theme throughout the story.”

CAMP.

CAMP.

The good stuff was taken. No waterskiing, no archery, no boating. The woman confirmed my fear: “We’ll put you drama and arts and crafts!”

Escapism

Escapism

You are the word shakers, the meaning-makers. The insiders into unspoiled beauty. The creators of escape. And you must not leave the rest of us behind.

What To Do About Pigeons

So far, our best idea for getting rid of the pigeons involves gluing thumbtacks to the window ledge. We worry that we do not have enough tacks.

Urban Rednecks

Urban Rednecks

From the OED’s inbred, perverted cousin, Urban Dictionary: Although the idea of an Urban Redneck would at first seem an oxymoron, they do exist, and are actually quite common. There are three kinds of Urban Rednecks.

Tale As Old As Time

Tale As Old As Time

The thing is, though, this mode of taking in the world is really tiring. It’s healthy, and it’s stretching, and it brings perspective, but it’s tiring.

A Fire Devours Before Him

A Fire Devours Before Him

It started out as a family errand: Ahmed Haithem Ahmed was driving his mother, Mohassin, to pick up his father from the hospital where he worked.

The Weight of Six Pounds

The Weight of Six Pounds

It’s the kind of book that takes up half of your book shelf and that you could use as a makeshift booster seat to prop a toddler up to the grownup’s table.

The Beast and the Sovereign

The Beast and the Sovereign

“Beast” is a category not easily dismissed because “beast” bleeds out and spills over. When it’s presented as a binary, “beast” negates intrinsic components of our humanity.