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blog archive

the writing life

The Creative Life

Here’s more evidence for the theory that messiness and creativity are somehow connected: W. H. Auden was apparently a disgusting + more

Stop! Grammar Time!

About a block from helveticka world headquarters there’s a business that offers “Spokanes only 15 minute workout.” A missing apostrophe, + more

Word of the Day

bricoleur (noun; French) one who creates without the aid of a plan or strategy “Aaron’s such a brilliant writer, I’ll + more

Monday Curmudgeonry

The definition of the word privilege, like that of racism, has lately been stretched so far as to have lost + more

Garbage In, Garbage Out

“No matter where I’ve worked,” writes Molly Young in perhaps the greatest takedown of corporate-speak I’ve ever read, “it has + more

The New Puritans

In light if this steaming pile of stupidity—in which one of the “concerns” raised against American Dirt is that the + more

Go Phil Go!

Remember when President Jimmy Carter led a multi-nation boycott of the 1980 Summer Olympics when the Soviets refused to withdraw + more

Vindication Is Mine

Pssst: Like multitasking, unicorns, and Donald Trump’s self-made real estate empire, brainstorming is a myth. I know, it doesn’t fit + more

Mere Wordnerdery

Wilfred M. McClay is my spirit animal: Like a lover of endangered species, the lover of endangered words jumps for + more

Stop! Grammar time!

Oof. “Best known as the drummer and lyricist of the Canadian rock trio, Rush, [Neil] Peart was also a successful + more

[head smack]

WNYC, a public radio station in New York, has cancelled “New Sounds,” a show that’s been running for 37 years. + more

And the decline of Western Civilization continues apace…

Citing “the ignorance and laziness present in modern times,” John Richards, 96, has closed the Apostrophe Protection Society. “Fewer organisations + more


John Simon, the critic who served as a model for my own foray into music criticism so many years ago, + more

Neanderthals, Barbarians, and Addicts

“I would love to know who tried it first,” writes Lee Child about opium. “I would love to know who + more

Social Media’s Good for Something. Sometimes.

Learned another word the other day—on Twitter, no less—and it’s glorious: Shambolic. My first thought was that it was a + more

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