A friend of mine is studying in Chiang Mai, Thailand, and she recently participated in Loi Kratong, an all-out lantern lighting festival that falls on the full moon of the 12th lunar month (usually... READ ON
So I'm going to be really obvious and talk about gratitude...First of all: thanks to all our readers! I always look forward to reading your comments, which are guaranteed to be full of expertly hewn gems of facts, wisdom, and hilarity. There's that lovely Meister Eckhart quote: If the only prayer you ever say in your whole life is "thank you," that would suffice. But in the latter day of all sorts of spiritual maxims, there are more than a few outspoken factions who support the ritualized giving of thanks... READ ON
Yes, it's November, and apparently National Peanut Butter Month. If you get into these sorts of occasions, maybe, as J-Plautz reported, you could start investing in peanut butter diamonds, or if you're "feeling art" maybe Vik Muniz's "Double Mona Lisa (Peanut Butter and Jelly)" is the way to go.
Honestly, I couldn't care less that it's Peanut Butter Month, and when March comes & it's straight-up Peanut Month, I'll be equally enthused. That's because I still can't stand to be in the same room as peanuts,... READ ON
One of the more common kinds of situs inversus--the condition in which one's internal organs appear on the opposite side of the body--is dextrocardia, when the heart sets up headquarters on, yes, the right... READ ON
One of the best things about calling LA home is the opportunity to live unabashedly through your actor friends. If I think I've had a bad day, say, maybe received a couple rejection slips in the mail or some line producer isn't calling me back, my actor friends will come back with something like: "well try standing in a hatefully long line in a bikini top with 300 other girls, waiting to screen test a kiss with a man you've never seen before, and after that being told you should consider having yours ears... READ ON
When my father poured a slab of cement to build a dog kennel, he called my family out into the yard to sign it before it dried. To date, that's the only time I've ever carved my name into anything--not a tree, not a bathroom wall, nothing. I've never even signed off in spray paint. The most I've done is hide a piece of a broken typewriter in a hard-to-reach place on my college campus. It was there six months later; not so sure about now. I'd love to track down some mottled birch in twenty years and hope... READ ON
China is facing a couple of major soirÃ©es in the next few years: the Beijing Olympic Games in '08 and the Shanghai Expo in '10. A recent Dissent feature looks at China's past attempts at updating hygienic etiquette:
The [YouTube] posting includes footage from a propaganda film shot in Maoist times (1949-1976). Back then, as now, spitting on the ground is targeted as not just unhygienic but symbolic of backwardness. (It is no accident that in the YouTube footage young people are shown telling people... READ ON
I've touched on absinthe before, but I'm going to revisit it in honor of a friend who is currently planning the LA launch party of one of the two Absinthes imported sans trouble into the U.S. One is the French brand, Lucid (!), and the other, KÃ¼bler, debuted just weeks ago from Sweden. And neither are green! A party pumping KÃ¼bler absinthe into the probably-planning-on-driving-at-some-point crowd, well, it makes me shudder. Vehicle-free partiers in NYC are likely to party harder; indeed, The NYTimes... READ ON
We have the Raeliens to thank for so many things, not least of all the human cloning company, Clonaid, and the sadly defunct Raelien theme park, UFOland. The Canadian park, before its recent closure, featured the largest hay structure in the world, along with the tallest DNA structure--it measured 26 ft. Rael (nÃ©e Claude Vorilhon) is the founder of the religion; his initiation dates back to December of '73, when he was a sports journalist living and working in France.
He was loitering in a crater... READ ON
Last night, Patricia Canale owned the stage on FOX's popular game show, "Don't Forget the Lyrics." The only sad thing about her win of $100,000 was that it signaled the end of her vocal performance! At a packed viewing party in the Valley, Patricia caught her breath to dish on karaoke bars, shuffling-off-to-Buffalo, and knowing when to walk away.
Congratulations on beating the system! Are you prepared for people to interrupt you in the grocery store asking you to sing "Maniac"?
I can't wait!... READ ON
The famous Aaron Burr “Got Milk?” ad from 1993 was directed by Michael Bay.