How to Win at Sports

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  Like many other Americans, one of my defining childhood memories is baseball. Fenway Park was a menagerie of chaos and uncouthness then: the rowdy blue-collar crowd, the swearing, the harassing of the Yankees even if there was no Yankee within a hundred miles, the cult-like chanting to Neil Diamond’s Sweet Caroline. I loved going to Fenway with my father in the 1980s and 90s. Attending a game was a […]

Past Present: Institutionalizing Children, Referees, and Charlottesville

Referees discuss the flags thrown

In this episode, Neil, Niki, and Natalia debate the history of the institutionalization of children, the thankless job of refereeing youth sports, and the legacy of the violence in Charlottesville, Virginia, one year after the Unite the Right rally. Here are some links and references mentioned during this week’s show: Coverage of family separation is revealing many abuses visited upon children detained in state facilities. Natalia mentioned this WNYC history of immigration detainment and this […]

Featured Artists: Collect for Change

Nadja Verena Marcin, How to Undress in Front of Your Husband (still), 2016, Video/Performance, 13 min, 4k digital cinema

Inaugural Collect For Change™ Exhibition Curated by Amy Kisch + Danielle Smith + Kimberly Verde + Heather Zises state space, San Francisco, CA Saturday, January 6 – Friday, February 16, 2018 AKArt and state are pleased to present Object Action: The “F” Word in a Post-Truth Era, to mark the inauguration of Collect For Change™—an initiative which collaborates with artists across disciplines, offering artwork with a portion of sales benefitting a charity personally selected by each artist. A group exhibition that […]

A Life of Purpose

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The purpose of life is a life of purpose. —Robert Byrne How do we keep going in the face of seemingly insurmountable odds? How do we overcome the dark forces of self-doubt and self-criticism which can sometimes cripple our ability to create our best, most purposeful lives? How do we rise above the sometimes ungenerous, unkind stories we tell ourselves as we go about our lives? Sitting around the table at […]

Past Present Podcast: LIVE! Antifa, Cultural Appropriation, and Income Inequality

Melissa Murray, they are yours, they are lost, 2012

In this episode of Past Present, Natalia, Niki, and Neil debate the historical origins of Antifa, cultural appropriation, and the role of contract labor in an unequal society.  Antifa We discussed Antifa, which has been popularized by historian Mark Bray’s Antifa: The Anti-Fascist Handbook. Natalia commented on the romanticized assumption of Antifa opponents that there ever was a “perfect” nonviolent protest culture, as explained in this New York Times opinion […]

Kyle Jarrow on Broadcast, Broadway, and Being Bicoastal (For Now)

Kyle Jarrow

Kyle Jarrow is a writer and musician who creates work for the stage, film and television. He is creator and executive producer of the upcoming TV series Valor, premiering on the CW network this fall. His digital series Lost Generation (with original music by Duncan Sheik) is now streaming on Verizon’s go90 platform. Kyle’s plays include A Very Merry Unauthorized Children’s Scientology Pageant (Obie Award), The Wildness (Lortel Award nominee), Whisper House (now playing in London), Noir, Love Kills and Hostage Song. Kyle penned […]

Past Present Podcast: Nazis in Charlottesville, the Google Memo, and Blondeness

Charlottesville Candlelight Vigil at the White House, Washington, DC USA

In this week’s episode of Past Present, Natalia, Neil, and Niki debate the role of neo-Nazis in the white nationalist violence in Charlottesville, the Google memo, and the political power of blondeness.  Nazis in Charlottesville We discussed the deadly attack by white nationalists and neo-Nazis in Charlottesville, Virginia. Niki has written about her experience in Charlottesville for U.S. News & World Report and for Vox. In thinking about the history […]

Past Present Podcast: Pride Month, the Paris Accords, and Kathy Griffin

Pride

In this week’s episode of Past Present, Neil, Natalia, and Niki debate the politics of pride marches, the history of climate change, and Kathy Griffin and the politics of offense.  Pride Month June marks Pride Month, although Donald Trump’s White House has not officially recognized it. We discussed the history of pride parades, and Neil talked about their connection to the Stonewall Riot of 1969. Natalia commented on the commercialization […]

Past Present Podcast: Comey’s Firing, Teeth & Dentistry, and the Bachelorette

Comey

On this week’s episode of Past Present, Niki, Natalia, and Neil debate Jim Comey’s firing, teeth and dental care, and the Bachelorette’s first black star. Comey’s Firing Donald Trump has admitted he fired FBI director Jim Comey because he was investigating Russia’s role in the 2016 election. We discussed the usefulness of comparing Comey’s firing to Nixon’s Saturday Night Massacre. Natalia shared the historian Nathan Connolly’s Facebook post that Trump’s […]

Past Present Podcast: HBCUs, Rebecca Tuvel, and Commencement Speeches

University Commencement

In this week’s episode of Past Present, Neil, Natalia, and Niki debate historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs), the Rebecca Tuvel controversy, and commencement speeches. HBCUs Donald Trump recently suggested that a federal program that finances construction projects on historically black college and university campuses may be unconstitutional. But a few days later, he expressed “unwavering support” for HBCUs. Natalia observed Trump’s various moves to reach out to African Americans […]