Either I’ll Never Be Famous Or I’ll Be A Megalomaniac.

In the best of times, my job demands make getting any of my own writing done – for the Knicks; for book reviews; for my own fiction – a challenge. A week and a half of constant headaches has left me with, literally, 200+ essays/short papers to get through ASAP. This is not the best of times.

One of the guys who writes at the same Knicks site I do is now writing for Sports Illustrated. This leads me to wonder – is the amount of time I devote to teaching preventing a potential writing career from taking off? Or, having found work I enjoy and show some aptitude for, should that remain my betrothed, with the writing a lifelong mistress?

In the great BBC Steven Moffat series Coupling, there’s a scene when two friends, Steve and Patrick, are trying to convince a third friend, Jeff,  who’s just started dating a woman, that relationships are never as fun long-term as they are in the beginning. Jeff rebuts them, pointing out that Julia, his new girlfriend, loves to wear exciting, tiny underwear and lingerie. A frustrated Steve tells Jeff, “There are 3 things all men should know, and it’s time you did too. You’re never going to be famous, you’re fatter than you think you are, and, most important of all, [women] don’t keep wearing stockings.” Continue reading

Migraine Day #9: The Fear

Late last Thursday as I was wrapping up my final class of the day, I felt myself growing inexplicably irritated. At first I thought my annoyance was because of a particular student, but the more I thought about it the less that made sense; the student, though annoying in general, hadn’t done anything to provoke the intensity of feeling I detected. The next morning I woke up and still felt off. Eventually I realized I had a headache, an epiphany I greeted with a sense of relief. Yes, my head hurt. But at least I had understanding. Oh. That’s why I’m in a bad mood. Okay. Now I get it.

That was nine days ago. The migraine has not gone away. It’s getting worse. Continue reading

Online dating: yea or nay?


Another online dating shift has come and gone and again I’m left with nothing but questions and unclaimable expenses. Should I continue, or quit? Have I been barking up the wrong digital tree? Or is real life the best place to search for love/like/lust? Is there a third option I’m missing? Is love only apparent once you stop looking?

I’ve worked quite a bit with OK Cupid, meeting everything from selfish lawyers to arrogant atheists to flaky single moms to overrun single moms to girls who just want a text buddy or a phone friend. One lady was super cool, and smart, and sexy, and then she concluded she isn’t ready for dating right now. She phrased it like she’s not ready to date anyone right now, but when you’re the one getting dropped it does tend to feel personal.
I’m not sure about OK Cupid anymore, not after reading if you use the site but aren’t a paying member, your chats and personal info are not encrypted with HTTPS protection. I can deal with being rejected or passed over by strangers…but not by third-party strangers having access to my rejection.

Continue reading

Writing for the self ==> writing for others ==> something BEaUtiful

fucked up society

This week for the Stony Brook writing program’s blog, I interviewed Shreeya Tuladhar, a biology major minoring in writing and anthropology. Tuladhar was a child model in Nepal, an experience that began a lifetime of struggling with body image issues and one exacerbated by her family later moving to New York City; she skipped a grade and was the smallest student in her classes, something other classmates bullied and abused her about. She had so many thoughts she didn’t feel she could express, so she wrote about them. She kept a diary. She posted poems to hi5. As her studies continued she wrote and read more and more, and in college a class project gave her an opening to create a written document and a digital film that talked about her experiences and invited her audience to share their own insecurities and literally re-frame them as part of what makes them beautiful. And so “Project BEaUtiful” was born. Check out my interview with Tuladhar and her video below.

How/How Not To Act When The Victim of A Sex Crime Comes Out To You


Statistics say 20% of women and 5% of men are sexually abused as children, which would mean 30 million women and about 8 million men in the U.S. are victims…so odds are you or someone you know have dated someone who was abused. As someone with two decades of experience coming out to partners about the complexities abuse adds to one’s sex life, I can report there is a lot of ignorance in terms of knowing what is or isn’t an acceptable response. I offer the following one-question quiz in the hopes someone somewhere learns something from it.

(Note: all the answers listed are things people have actually said or done. I wish they were jokes. They’re not. They’re all real.)

(I’ll give you a hint. A through G = incorrect answers. H = correct.)

Q: You’re about to get intimate with your partner when they tell you they were the victim of sexual violence in the past. This is the first time they’ve mentioned it & it’s obvious it’s difficult for them to do so. How should you respond?

A) Tell them you don’t believe them because you don’t want to.

B) Make a joke about molesting kids.

C) Say you’re not really good at “being there for people” and steer the conversation toward yourself.

D) Top their story with your own shocking tale of abuse.

E) Abruptly change the subject, because sex crimes that happen to a gender you don’t identify with don’t matter.

F) Excitedly tell your partner their being molested is “a blessing in disguise” because you’ve wondered if your own child’s ever been abused, and now you have your own “expert” to quiz on what signs to look for.

G) Act supportive while you’re in the same room as your partner, then as soon as you leave spend the following days/weeks slowly and silently drifting away, wordlessly, until it’s obvious they’re never going to hear back from you.

H) Listen. Hug them. Tell them you understand, even if you don’t, and that you’re comfortable working with them on what they need to be comfortable too. Be patient. Then enjoy the perks of intimacy with someone who’s spent their life killing themselves to find it.


A History of Hate (part 1)

nykbos  nyklal

Let’s be honest: without rivalries, professional sports is a bunch of genetic freaks running around in pajama-ish clothes while millions of people watch and displace their failed adolescent dreams on them. That’s no fun. But rivalries…ahh, when the blood is angried up, then shit gets real. If you’re gonna displace, after all, why not displace something useful? Like hatred?

In part 1 of a two-part series, I looked at three Knick rivalries: the 70-year conflict with the Boston Celtics, the psychologically torturous bicoastal beef with the L.A. Lakers, and the now-dormant but once-fierce-as-the-fires-of-Mordor battles with the Baltimore Bullets. Please remove all metal objects from your person, take off your footwear, and prepare for a flight back in time, when sports-hate still roamed wild and free.