Wednesday, April 26, 2017
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We are the imagination of ourselves

Archive for the ‘Television’ Category

Ronlyn Domingue

How I Learned to Stop Worrying about Russians (Iraqis, North Koreans, and so on) and Hate War

October 1st, 2009
by Ronlyn Domingue

NEAR 91 DEGREES LONGITUDE-

I confronted eschatology too young. Although benign compared to some beliefs, my Catholic upbringing placed me at the sidelines of Armageddon—strange references to a kingdom come, the Second Coming, Judgment Day. I got queasy at the mention of the Book of Revelations. Sermons and syntactically-strained Bible readings led me to infer a tremendous destructive end to all life, human, animal, insect, plant. There were drawings in books, filled with fire, angels and demons, a sea of the damned. For a child, it’s impossible to reconcile a loving Father with one who will kill every one of his children with wanton violence. Children also don’t grasp metaphor.

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Ben Loory

Tarnishment of the Living Apparatus

September 15th, 2009
by Ben Loory

LOS ANGELES, CA-

There is no point to this. The point is that I’m getting sick. I just noticed it an hour ago. Suddenly I am blowing my nose. Out of nowhere. And now feeling a little wonky. So I took some vitamin C and ate about 14 pounds of sautéed spinach and now I am sitting here waiting to die. If the pig flu gets me tell them I was an okay guy. Kind of quiet and not very good at tennis, but basically decent.
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A. F. Passafiume

Make a Gleeful Noise

September 12th, 2009
by A. F. Passafiume

NASHVILLE, TN -

The new TV show Glee made its season premiere last week, and it seems like a good chunk of America is already hooked. I know I am. It’s a fun show that takes me back to when I was in Glee Club during high school. I loved being in Glee Club. I was thoroughly involved and was even Vice President during my senior year. Just to be clear, however, my high school Glee Club was nothing like the one depicted on Fox.

Granted, I was in Glee Club during the late 80s. Maybe things have changed since then. A lot. But in my day (and if you find yourself beginning sentences with “In my day” it’s a sure sign that you are about an inch away from yelling “You kids get off my lawn!”) our Glee Club was very proper. I went to a private all girls boarding school, which I realize could not have been a typical high school experience. We had curfews and couldn’t wear jeans to class or chew gum, we encouraged each other to excel academically, and it wasn’t nerdy to be in Glee Club. We didn’t have cheerleaders or a football team, you understand, so being involved in music was perfectly acceptable.

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D.R. Haney

How I Became Human

August 30th, 2009
by D.R. Haney

LOS ANGELES—

Growing up working-class in a small Southern city, I early acquired a racist vocabulary. This was by no means encouraged by my parents, who were mortified when, at four or so, I referred to a fellow customer at Sears as a nigger. I have no memory of doing that — I was told about it years later — but I’m sure I was baffled by the punishment I received. The kids in my neighborhood used the word “nigger” as a matter of course. To them, it was an appropriate term for a person of color, and I followed suit, even after the Sears incident. Why punish someone for calling a bird a bird? And why would a bird object? So, I think, my reasoning went.
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James D. Irwin

The Time I Accidentally Created Seinfeld and Other Strange Pages from the Notebook

August 18th, 2009
by James D. Irwin

SOUTH EAST, ENGLAND-

This is a pretty spontaneous post.

I’ve been out of bed for about forty-five minutes, I’ve had a coffee and I’m currently sat in my pajamas listening to The Ramones.

I’ve become obsessed with The Ramones recently and haven’t really listened to anything else in over a week; I’ve even stopped listening to my favourite classic rock station.

To put this obsession in the form of a cheap pun: I don’t remember rock and roll radio.

The reason I suddenly decided to post was because of something I found in an old notebook…

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Zara Potts

Miss Ellie and My Sister’s Breast

July 30th, 2009
by Zara Potts

AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND -

Television has been very important in my life.

It made a strong impression on me from a very young age. When I first saw colour TV - I wet my pants. Literally.

Television is how I’ve made my living for most of my working life. It’s inspired me. Exasperated me. Paid my bills. Introduced me to my great love. Taken away my great love. Given me lifelong friends and opened the door to terrible enemies.

You could say television has had a profound influence on me.

But maybe not as profound as it had on my sister.

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Peter Gajdics

The Runaways

July 23rd, 2009
by Peter Gajdics

VANCOUVER, BC-

My eldest sister, Sara, was sixteen years old the night she ran away from home. My two older brothers and other older sister and I were in the den, sitting on the multi-colored shag carpet, watching “The Brady Bunch,” when Sara walked past us, clutching a bundle of laundry. No one paid her much attention; but as she walked through the room I looked up and she looked down and in that moment, that fractured, timeless glance, I saw her eyes, a searing, searching look inside her eyes. I have to go before I die; I can’t look back or else I’ll cry. Then she was gone, around the corner and down the stairs and, as I learned later that night, out of the house and our lives like an unwelcomed guest taking flight. (more…)


Colleen McGrath

Will the Real Sydney Bristow Please Stand Up?

July 12th, 2009
by Colleen McGrath

BERLIN, GERMANY

Lately I’ve been dreaming about being a spy.  It’s a nice change from the usual “somebody is chasing me” nightmare.  These days the tables are turned and rather than running through molasses from some unknown terror, I’m the one holding the machine gun.  Go me!  I’d like to think that the dream analysis is true and this represents my drive and ambition.  Sadly, I think it has a lot more to do with my recent Alias obsession.  Apparently my subconscious wants to be Sydney Bristow.  (more…)


D.R. Haney

“Farrah! You’re beautiful! I love you!”

June 26th, 2009
by D.R. Haney

LOS ANGELES—

I was a teenager living in New York. George was my brilliant roommate, and sometimes, if we weren’t doing anything, one of us would say, “Do you want to walk aimlessly around?” That was our standard joke. But we did indeed spend much time walking aimlessly all over Manhattan, and one early-winter night on the Upper East Side, far from the one-room hovel we shared near the Williamsburg Bridge, we saw flashbulbs popping a little ahead of us on the sidewalk. A celebrity must be near—a celebrity being hounded by the paparazzi. We kept walking, and I saw that the celebrity was Farrah Fawcett.
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Aaron Dietz

Twitter Advice for Johnny Depp, Mary Lynn Rajskub, and You

June 24th, 2009
by Aaron Dietz

SEATTLE, WA-

Let’s start with the Twitter advice for you, since the majority of you fit into that category. If you’re Johnny Depp or Mary Lynn Rajskub, you can skip to the relevant section.

Scenario: You are you. You’re on Twitter. If you’re totally lost, you can get the basics from Greg Olear, but whether or not you hit Olear’s brief survival guide, I’m going to tell you what Twitter is:

It’s a site where people type what they’re doing into the Internet and then nobody reads it because nobody cares.

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P.T. Winton

Confessions of a Hypomanic Insomniac (Infomercial Hangover)

June 22nd, 2009
by P.T. Winton

BOULDER, CO-

It’s not so much insomnia as it is hypomania.

Anyway, the bottom line is that I can’t sleep. My brain does not stop.

It’s like texting with my best friend. I want to stop, but alas, I can not. (After all, we have things to do — kids to bring to soccer games and tacos to make.) So, we try to stop, we really try. But within fifteen minutes, one or the other of us types, “Hey, guess what I just thought of?” This is how my brain works. I try to stop thinking, then this little voice pipes up, “Hey, have you thought about the implications of cold fusion?”

Who the fuck cares?

But, there it is, I can’t stop thinking about an issue that I have no authority to think about. Sometimes it goes on like this for hours, or days.

I watch the TV to try to turn my mind off. Watching television at four in the morning has a side effect. Infomercial inundation. That’s a problem for me. I am hopelessly naive, and these commercials prey on people like me.

Every night I tell myself not to give in, but resistance is futile. (more…)


Simon Smithson

Playing it Straight

June 16th, 2009
by Simon Smithson

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA-

Yes, OK. I admit it. I, in my foolhardy youth, was one of the cast of the Australian version of Playing It Straight. If you’re unfamiliar with the show, the basic concept is this: it’s The Bachelorette, with the added twist that half the dozen male suitors are gay, and half are straight. The gay guys do their best to pretend to be hetero (hence the title), and every week, the Bachelorette equivalent evicts two of them. It was basically a test of just how good her gaydar was: if, at the end, she ended up leaving one straight guy on the show, then the two of them split two hundred thousand dollars and, presumably, lived happily ever after. If, however, a gay guy was the last man standing, then he got all $200K. (more…)


Greg Olear

Star Track

June 10th, 2009
by Greg Olear

NEW YORK, NY-

Note: this is an extended transcript of the blog I read at the maiden Off the Blog event in NYC on 6/9.

So it’s great to be back in New York. I lived here for ten years—the formative years of my young adulthood. Moved here at 22, single and broke; left here at 32, married with a kid. And broke.

My first professional writing job was right here in New York, with Kaplan, the test-prep company. I used to write dummy SAT questions. There were twelve of us, all huddled in the same cold room, banging out analogies and reading comprehension passages and math problems involving the speed of trains leaving Chicago.

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Simon Smithson

My Suspicions are Aroused by a Lack of Difficulty

June 7th, 2009
by Simon Smithson

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA-

I like TV. I really do. Sure, a lot of the time it’s nothing more than popcorn for the eyes, but it’s such delicious popcorn. Lately, the staple ingredient of my viewing diet has been Entourage, and catching back up with Vince, E, Turtle, Drama, and Vince has been a lot of fun. Also, I’ve realised that I want to marry Samaire Armstrong (my ardour cooled when I realised that she’d appeared in The O.C., but reignited, stronger than ever, when I saw that she’s also been in The X-Files). Some day, Samaire. Some day. (more…)


Sung J. Woo

Star Trek Through the Years

May 27th, 2009
by Sung J. Woo

WASHINGTON, NJ -

For the last two weeks, I had intended to write up a little review of the new Star Trek film, but then I got thinking about what this franchise has meant to me. Don’t worry — I’m not some loon who knows the stardate of when Kirk took his first swig of Romulan Ale, and I certainly can’t translate Shakespeare into Klingon. However, I’m not a casual fan, either. I’ve seen enough Star Trek to know what the prime directive means or that Uhura’s name comes from the Swahili word for freedom.

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Suzanne Burns

May Update: Thoughts on American Almost-Idol Adam, On Turning 36, and My Continuing Writing Life

May 20th, 2009
by Suzanne Burns

BEND, OR-

It’s been a crazy month. I am working right now on a new novel, a poetry manuscript about Paris, freelancing for the local arts paper and co-writing a script about the Thai sex trade. I turned 36, watched the complete season of American Idol (fell in love with Adam, finally, when he wore that gorgeous outfit of Kiss boots and metal wings), sold a few poetry books, took a class on baking with chocolate, went on a ghost hunt in rural Eastern Oregon and watched a handsome waiter in my favorite local restaurant bring me a piece of pecan pie with a candle on top. (more…)


Rich Ferguson

Signs Your Life Has Become An Episode of 24…

May 20th, 2009
by Rich Ferguson

LOS ANGELES -

1. Stuff just keeps blowing up.

2. Every hour of your life ends in a cliffhanger and split screen.

3. Your co-workers are either moles, model-gorgeous, or out to kill you.

4. Your average day consists of shootouts, plane crashes, and nuclear bomb explosions.

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Simon Smithson

The Letters I Wrote that did not Convince Janeane Garofalo to Have Sex with Me.

May 14th, 2009
by Simon Smithson

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA-

Very recently, I published a blog here on TNB about an attempt that I made to sleep with Janeane Garofalo. This attempt was made in the form of certain letters, written by yours truly, in the pages of a Melbourne street press magazine while Ms. Garofalo was in town. Now overwhelming public demand (and by overwhelming public demand, I mean two people, but that’s more than enough for me) has induced me to republish those letters here. I feel I must warn you - even if you are not Janeane Garofalo, you may very well be seduced. (more…)


James D. Irwin

The Nexus of the Universe

May 13th, 2009
by James D. Irwin

SOUTH COAST, ENGLAND-

The first time I was in America my brother and I watched an episode of Seinfeld.

We’d never seen it before, living in England, it being about ten years since the show finale and not having cable. We’d heard about it and numerous references to it of course, but never actually seen the show.

It was a classic episode too, the one where George thinks he’s seen Saddam Hussein and Jerry uses that weird cookie to make light of racism. I forget the name of the episode— it must be something like ‘The Black and White Cookie’ or something.

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Simon Smithson

Let Me Tell You About the Time I Didn’t have Sex with Janeane Garofalo.

May 11th, 2009
by Simon Smithson

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA-

I’m not exactly sure when I first learned who Janeane Garofalo was. It may well have been when I went to see The Truth About Cats and Dogs on an ill-advised high school date. I’ve heard reports that Janeane Garofalo hates that movie. For the record, so do I. How my date at the time felt about it, I’m not sure. But it was five years until I saw that girl again, and it was by accident, so I’m guessing it’s not in her desert island DVD collection either. (more…)