Self-awareness is dead. Long live self-awareness.

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When I first received the link to a virtual session with my therapist, my reaction could generously be described as apathetic. In the weeks leading up to quarantine, we had fallen into a routine. I recapped, in much detail, the events of the previous two weeks, struggling to squeeze as much into 50 minutes as I could. My perspective: a mile high and an inch deep. My therapist (who I’ve asked to interrupt me when she senses that I’m teetering on the edge of a diatribe) asking pertinent questions that may lead to deeper…


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Introducing “The Point of Show Return” — Helping You Binge Better

The majority of content that I consume comes to me via recommendations from personalities whose taste I trust. My dad, quick to remind you that he is a former projectionist, is the first to send trailers for Oscar favorites. I closely monitor whatever my friends Dan and Alex are listening to, because they have an ear for the sound I love. When it comes to books, I’m normally the plug, putting my loved ones on to reads that match their interests, even if they’ll never crack the spine.

All…


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The idiom “don’t judge a book by its cover” applies to many things in life, but rarely are books one of them. When I passed by Late Migrations on a table at my local bookstore, the striking yellow cover caught my eye. The silhouette of a young woman, hair at shoulder length, looking into the distance, or in this case, the stack of books to her right. Instead of black shadow, the outline was filled with a variety of flora and fauna. Perched above her right ear, a warbler gazing in the same direction. Below that, a monarch butterfly pauses…


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In his 2003 book Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs: A Low Culture Manifesto, Chuck Klosterman outlined the 23 questions he asks everyone he meets in order to decide if he can really love them. For example:

You have won a prize. The prize has two options, and you can choose either (but not both). The first option is a year in Europe with a monthly stipend of $2,000. The second option is ten minutes on the moon. Which option do you select?

For me, the answer is obvious. For others, not so much. The goal is not to find the…


12 Years, 500+ Songs, One Friendship

The air was stale. Then again, everything is stale inside a high school that was built in 1929. A Pennsylvania September — one of the few climates that felt comfortable inside the cavernous halls. Weeks remained before December’s cold winds would sneak through the glass of cracked windows, biting at Catholic school kids in navy blue sweaters.

The temperature hadn’t yet dropped, but two boys still huddled together in the back of Mrs. Peluso’s biology class. …


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My expectations for Brian Phillips collection of essays, Impossible Owls, were impossibly high. The writer: a former contributor at Grantland and current resident of Central PA. The book: a feature on multiple “Best of 2018” lists and a cross-section of culture, sports, philosophy, and history. Despite my voracious appetite for reading, this was the first collection of essays I had ever purchased. It very well may be the last, because I can’t imagine anything topping Phillips’ soaring accomplishment.

From the Iditarod in the Alaskan wilderness to a sumo tournament in urban Japan, Phillips approaches each story with a fresh perspective…


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The cover of An Ocean of Minutes did exactly what it was supposed to do. The vivid gradient of colors stood out amongst a sea of sameness. Shades of pink, blue, and yellow blurred across an image of water, the italic title, in white, floating above. I was completely hooked once I read the description: a novel about time travel gone wrong. Polly volunteers to travel 12 years in the future to help her ailing boyfriend, only to be re-routed, arriving five years later than expected.

Despite it’s dazzling cover, Thea Lim’s debut novel is more than surface deep. Obviously…


Alternatively, “My Emotions As Sung By Other People”

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In today’s culture, publishing year-end lists happens about a month before the year ends. I’d like to say my waiting until January is an attempt at authenticity, but the reality is that I am easily distracted by holiday happenings. In a year that I became most in tune with my own feelings, the list is dominated by projects that either amplified them, or swiftly pulled me in another emotional direction. I’ve included more detailed thoughts for the top three, but explanations aside, here are my ten favorite albums of 2018.

10. Kacey…


Recess, the CBD-infused sparkling water, is making its way to your fridge.

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I quit drinking only to get addicted to Swedish Fish.

They are regularly stocked in my office, I pick up a bag on my way home from dinner, and once, invested in the utterly despicable 2-pound sack in the name of efficiency. I can’t describe their taste. In fact, I can’t even explain why I like them. There are better candies, to be sure, but my body craves their soft, red, Scandinavian flesh.

In my case, getting sober wasn’t about stopping an addiction. It was more about replacing…


Thoughts on Sarah Wilson’s First, We Make The Beast Beautiful.

I’ve never had a fear of flying, but I’m terrified of airports. They are an anxiety-themed amusement park with no shortage of attractions. Wading through suffocating crowds of people only to find that your escape has been delayed because of a mysterious, maintenance issue. Such a lack of control can be panic-inducing for even for the most balanced travelers.

Fitting then, that while stuck in Tampa International Airport, I came across First, We Make The Beast Beautiful — A New Journey Through Anxiety by Sarah Wilson. …

Bobby Scott

starting to think my dad was right about that philosophy degree.

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