Journal

Dispatches and speculations from the American roadside.



September 27, 2017

Saturday Night

Niland, California. Half-past midnight on the edge of the Salton Sea. “Everything is a mystery and I’m just a small part of it,” she said. “Maybe that’s all I need to know.”

March 3, 2017

Some Strange Region of the Universe

The surreal vistas of Iceland amplified the sensation of living in end times, an effect enhanced by brutalist churches that looked as if they belonged to alien gods.

January 30, 2017

The Woman in the Dunes

Kōbō Abe meditates on the reasons the mind craves routine: “It goes on, terrifyingly repetitive. One could not do without repetition in life, like the beating of the heart, but it was also true that the beating of the heart was not all there was to life.”

January 5, 2017

Guilt and Grace

“I often wonder why people torment themselves as soon as they can.”

September 19, 2016

The Story of Philosophy

“But we would believe all the while that there is something vital and significant in us, could we but decipher our souls.”

September 3, 2016

Fripp and Eno on the Hi-Fi

The glorious sound of power lines humming on a Saturday night long before the age of pixels and screens.

March 12, 2015

Decree #1 on the Democratization of Art

A manifesto written by Mayakovsky, Kamensky, and Burlluk on March 15, 1918.

February 20, 2015

Enchanted Desert

“They’ll challenge each other to walk ten miles into Death Valley without any supplies. They wager money on it.”

January 30, 2015

Midnight at the Veterans Hospital

Snapshots from the first week spent with my father at the Veterans Hospital where we would wait nine months for a lung.

January 30, 2015

The Dead Man’s Line

People in other countries take hostages for political reasons. Americans do it for real estate.

January 30, 2015

Isadora Ain’t Foolin’ Me Any

“If she goes pulling off her clothes and throwin’ them in the air like she did in Boston, there’s gonna be somebody getting a ride in the paddy wagon.”

August 3, 2014

Reverberated Crying

A dusty ballad plays in a grand old ballroom filled with tailored men and elaborate hairdos.