Archive for August, 2010

The Cliche Contest

Tonight’s challenge/prompt:

Take a phrase. I mean a really overused one. Make it the title of a new piece of writing. Try to make the writing not suck.

I’m working on a poem called “I Love New York.” It started forming in my head tonight while I was walking to get a taco. Here’s an excerpt:


All the superheroes come from here,

the same city where King Kong

found his playground.

It’s the rusty edges, the fringe

of Brooklyn just over the highway

where the sun turns from yellow to orange to purple

over the Statue of Liberty

night after night.


What’s your title?


Glenn Beck, DC, You, and Me

One of the oddities I find in today’s Glenn Beck–Sarah Palin march on Washington is their official roles as members of the media. Granted, neither of them has the word reporter in their job title, and therefore they have a little more leniency as a Correspondent and the host of a program that calls itself “The Fusion of Entertainment and Enlightenment.” Still the word “truth” appears a lot when Tea Party etc. al leaders are speaking. Yet this movement tells a truth that belongs to a minority of Americans. It’s a homogeneous reality that is vanishing as fast as McMansions in the exurbs.  My life is very different from the lives of Palin and Beck and most of their followers. That doesn’t make my existence any less true, or my experiences any less real.

Members of the media should return to covering rally’s instead of organizing them. Owners of media publications have an obligation to ensure that standards of professionalism are upheld by all–even correspondents. I’m not going to dig into the Tea Party message here, because I cherish the First Amendment and the power it gives people to make asses out of themselves. But I will say this: it is a public responsibility to hold the press accountable for the stories they report on (or choose not to). Perhaps, even more important than that, we are the ones responsible for telling our own truths. Saying them loud. Believing them even when they are disagreeable. And making sure they are heard–especially by those that may disagree.

Here’s the caveat: this also means listing to people who don’t agree with you. If we are ever going to stop the fracturing that’s taken place in the US over the last decade, we have to be willing to bend a little bit. Before we break.