Category: Thoughts

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How the City of Los Angeles Wants to Price You Out of the Appeals Process

Let’s say you’ve been given a parking ticket by an overly ambitious City of Los Angeles traffic enforcement officer for occupying a space past the posted 6PM deadline. You check your watch: it’s only 5:57. You take a time-stamped photo of your car and the sign and the street. You schedule an appeal. At the...

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Taking a Knee

A wealthy white friend of mine includes me on occasional BCC emails containing golf jokes, sex jokes, and, every now and then, political jokes. The latest one I got  — and I thought it was pretty funny — proposed a massive boycott of the NFL on our most sacred holiday weekend (Veteran’s Day). The humorous...

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From the Department of Prognostication

In the near future — 20 years? 50 years? — capitalism will implode. The vast majority of what we today consider “jobs” will be accomplished by machines running on artificial intelligence. Billions of people will rendered useless — except as highly nutritious protein meal for their machine-owning overlords. Without wages, consumption of goods and services...

Expelling Children to Make America Great Again

Although progressive thinkers may have little ideological  common ground with President Great, we still admire his best qualities, the better angels of his nature. One beautiful character attribute President Great (and the vast majority of his steadfast supporters) consistently display is deep, profound, passionate love. They’re lovers. President Great and his acolytes love America deeply, they love...

An Open Letter to City Zoning Administrator Fernando Tovar

Fernando.Tovar@lacity.org Dear Mr. Tovar, As a resident of Sunset Square and a neighbor of the the Gardner Street Elementary School, I read your August 30 decision on the proposed shopping mall/grocery store at 7445 W. Sunset Boulevard with keen interest. Despite hundreds of emails, letters, phone calls and in-person visits by concerned parents, students and...

Prayer for Another Ten

Let me be patient and let my kindness overflow the normal bounds of decency. Let me be patient and let my kindness bathe your wounds. Let me be patient and let my kindness radiate into the darkest corners. Let me be a salve. Let me be patient. Let me love you for another decade, another...

A Righteous Application of Misanthropy?

Have you seen any of the popular listicles enumerating the Top 5 Things You Can Do to Save the Planet? The Top 3? If not, can you guess the Number One Thing You Can Do to Save the Planet? Hint: It’s not “switch to LED bulbs.” Going full vegan is almost the strongest move. So...

The Struggles of Garry Kasparov

In 1986, when Jack Nicklaus won the Masters golf tournament at age 46, it was hard for us to understand what all the fuss was about. Sure, he made history, becoming the oldest player to win one of the four “majors.” But he was a lifelong athlete doing what he did best. Golf is a...

Our Bodies, Our Decisions

There’s a simple nostrum nutritionists and trainers employ to encourage wellness in their clients: You wear your fat. It’s another way of saying  your body announces to the world the consequences of your behavior. Imagine applying each doughnut directly to your thighs, each bottle of beer to your belly. Instead of a Facebook post, you merely need to...

Poem: The Guy in the Seat Next to You [Dodger Stadium Suite]

The challenge for a poet at the ball game is a triplicate predicament. He must not swoon over the greenness of the grass. He must not view every little lovely detail as a metaphor waiting to be transcribed for posterity. He must not recite rambling stories with no discernible point except to subtly imply it...