Tagged: michaelkonik.com

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It Is What It Is

More than “you know what I mean?” and starting sentences with either “Honestly?” or “So…,” the locution on everyone’s lips of late is the quasi-philosophical, quasi-nonsensical phrase “It is what it is.” What do people mean when they say this? Everything is what it is. In rare cases, something isn’t what it seems or appears...

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Colin McGourty, Chess Reporter

As the roving reporter for the Website Chess24.com, journalist Colin McGourty follows the best chess players around the globe, filing daily missives from tournaments and competitions, interviewing the best minds in the game, and generally keeping the chess public updated on the latest goings-on. In his colorful articles, McGourty elegantly pulls off the difficult trick...

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At a Hollywood Funeral

My neighbor died after a long illness. Until his last year, when he was incapacitated by infirmities, he’d enjoyed a rich and meaningful life, a full life, creating memories and children, wealth and legacies. When he expired at the home he had occupied for nearly 50 years, he was almost 93. At his funeral, the...

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Denying the Dastardly Duopoly

When your country’s government seems to be controlled by characters from professional wrestling competing in a “loser retires” bout, it’s easy to ascertain villainy in every unfair maneuver. The people in the Trump Administration: bad guys. Heels. They cheat. They lie. They’ll do anything to win. Who are the (baby) faces in this charade? Democrats,...

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Jacob Tremblay, Child Actor

The Canadian child actor Jacob Tremblay delivers performance of such naturalness and transparency that we forget he’s a kid. His work made us weep in two current movies, “Wonder,” in which he plays a boy with a birth defect (Mom: Julia Roberts), and the extraordinary and moving “The Book of Henry” (Mom: Naomi Watts), in which...

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Get a Job

“Get a job, sir!” That’s the advice given to Jeff “the Dude” Lebowski by another person named Lebowski, the Big Lebowski, a patently successful achiever who lives in a mansion filled with commendations and photos with important people like Nancy Reagan, when she was First Lady — of the United States, not California. The Dude...

Judah Friedlander’s “America is the Greatest Country in the United States”

Like their ancestor the King’s jester, modern comedians have implicit license to express out loud what many think but few are permitted to say. The best stand-up comics are truth-tellers. Their magic is to get you to laugh at the truth instead of cry. In his new special, “America is the Greatest Country in the...

The Story of the Clitboys

We were teenagers. We lived in the northern suburbs of Milwaukee. We knew nothing. But we felt deeply about everything. We were angry, confused, disgusted, frightened, and yet somehow hopeful. We were also blissfully unaware that three kids from Wisconsin could make music that would continue to mean something to listeners more than three decades...

Indexing L.A.’s Affordable Housing Crisis

The Coalition to Preserve LA, proponents of last year’s failed Measure S, which would have drastically re-made Los Angeles’s broken City Planning process, are in the weirdly unsatisfying position of being able to say “I told you so.” Nearly everyone familiar with housing development in Los Angeles agrees that the current system is utterly corrupted,...