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Professors, Beards, and Beer Oh My!

[ 124 ] June 1, 2014 |

A sociology professor was fired after his likeness appeared on a local brewery’s beer cans.

I can’t think

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of anyone around here bearded or beer-y enough that this could possibly happen to.

Nope, not a soul.

Happy Tenth Birthday? Anniversary? Whatever you call it, have a happy one, LG&M!

[ 33 ] May 31, 2014 |

It feels strange to think that this is the tenth anniversary of this humble little blog, and stranger still when I realize that means I’ve been around for half of its life, as my first post was back in 2009.

Since then, I’ve written 821 posts — approximately 164 per year, if my math doesn’t fail me — which is a frighteningly absurd number to consider, so I won’t. Instead, I’ll note that most days I still feel like “the new guy,” so much so that when I don’t post for a week, I’m always reluctant to post again for fear I’ve been demoted during my absence. (Of course, that’s never been the case, and both the folks in the masthead and you lot in the comments have always welcomed me back.)

But Rob asked us to think about what the tenth anniversary means — at least, that’s how I understood his email — and for me, it’s likely a little different from everybody else, because right now what it means is that I have a career.

Most of you already know that my job at the AV Club was a direct result of this post, and my opportunity to write for came from this one and its laser beams.

But most of you probably don’t know that my main job, at Raw Story, can also be directly attributed to my time here.

When I decided to leave California last year — for a whole host of reasons, some related to my family, others stemming from my general hatred of the state — I had planned on continuing my academic career in the South. I had two jobs lined up, one of which could easily have turned into a tenure-track position, but I wouldn’t say I was looking forward to it.

I enjoyed teaching as much as I ever did, but I’d grown tired of the stuff that all academics grow tired of, and so I did what all academics do when they’re tired of such stuff — I bitched about it on Facebook. One of the people who read my bitching and knew my work from here encouraged me to apply for a job for which I wasn’t remotely qualified at Raw Story, so I did.

As I haven’t been fired yet, you can guess how that worked out.

My point is, I owe Other Scott, Rob, Dave, Other Dave, David, Erik, Paul, Beth, and Charli quite a bit. I’ve managed to turn my random life and failed academic career into a living, and I wouldn’t have been able to have pulled it off were it not for Lawyers, Guns & Money.

Eventually, I hope to get back into the swing of attacking conservatives for the conservative things they say, but it’s taken me a long time to learn how to write without an overtly editorial voice, so writing with one feels a little schizophrenic. I’m sure, in time, I’ll be able to deal, because it’s not like I don’t have opinions anymore.

Similarly, this summer I’m going to start doing visual rhetoric series, beginning with one on the first half of this season of Mad Men. Then it’s on to The Sopranos, which I’m now watching for the first time thanks to Amazon Prime. It’s all about developing a new, non-academic writing routine, which I haven’t been able to do yet because freelancing is much harder than it seems.

And, of course, I’ll keep on turning my life into one act plays, because that’s what I do. (Sad as it is to say, I owe these two jackasses more than I’d like to admit, since they’re the ones who put me on the radar in the first place.)

Honestly, the only thing I’d change about the place — and I’m sorry if this offends anyone on the masthead, but I’ve been meaning to say it for a long time now — but I really hate our logo. It’s missing that je ne sais quoi, but I mocked up a possible new one:


Isn’t that just much better?


I’m really not the one who should be compiling this list, because I have the memory of an inattentive llama at this point, but if I had to choose, I’d say I thoroughly enjoyed creating a new internet tradition, teaching people what violent rhetoric is, wearing a hat, and being busted. As well as all those posts breaking down Mad Men, Doctor Who, The Walking Dead, and Game of Thrones. And the podcast with Steven Attewell, even if they throw my technological shortcomings into high relief.

Like I said, you’re probably better suited to telling me which of the 812 posts I’ve written are the best. I’m just glad I had the opportunity to write them here.

Lawyers, Guns & Money podcast: Game of Thrones, Season Four, Episode Seven: “Mockingbird”

[ 23 ] May 28, 2014 |

SEK and Steven Attewell are at it again!

Audio is available here

SEK talks Captain America: The Winter Soldier on Graphic Policy podcast

[ 16 ] May 27, 2014 |

I was on the Graphic Policy radio show/podcast last night discussing, among other things, the many excellent points Steve Attewell made about the film’s historical context, as well as many of the sorts of points I make about how film works. You can listen to it below.

New Pop Culture Podcasts with graphicpolicy on BlogTalkRadio

Sad to say, the co-hosts — Elana Levin and Brett Schenker — really steal the show, but I make a few decent points, even if I stole most of them from Steven.

Point being, I’m still such a teacher, i.e. a conduit for other people’s good ideas.

New Internet Film School column: Louie ain’t dreaming, it’s blue

[ 7 ] May 22, 2014 |


My latest Internet Film School column at the AV Club is open for business!

I will note, however, that the editors deemed some of my very necessary profanity unnecessary, so there are some odd lacunae in the piece. Just insert whatever

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curse you think I would’ve uttered when you encounter one and it should read just fine.

James O’Keefe, O’Boy Detective!

[ 91 ] May 21, 2014 |

He’s at it again, this time proving that if you pretend to be a rich person offering documentary producers $9 million, they will have lunch with you and accept your money.

We truly live in a new and better age of journalism. Now if you’ll excuse me, I hear tell Vox is about to Vox-splain me a little something something…

Lawyers, Guns & Money podcast: Game of Thrones, Season Four, Episode Six: “The Laws of Gods and Men”

[ 24 ] May 20, 2014 |

Yes, this is a week late. However, the next one will be available shortly, as we’re recording it today. We apologize for the inconvenience. Enjoy!

Audio is available here.

SEK’s Game of Thrones Recap: “Mockingbird,” in which things are binary, or they aren’t

[ 66 ] May 19, 2014 |

Things were very much black or white in this episode, except when they weren’t.

But mostly they were. I mean:


Also, I apologize for not getting the podcast up already, but it’s been a long weekend at Chez Kaufman. Fortunately — I kid, I kid — we have two weeks until the next episode airs, so we’ll be all caught up before the next one.

I’m amusing myself more than usual today…

[ 81 ] May 16, 2014 |

…which I know, is uncouth, but usually what amuses me, amuses you, so:

As David Moles mentioned on Twitter about the second link:

Feel free to take it wherever you please, so long as it’s amusing.

This week’s Game of Thrones recap is heavy on the visual rhetoric

[ 104 ] May 12, 2014 |


But only because the episode demanded it be. I don’t want to raise your expectations going forward too high, after all.

LG&M podcast: SEK & Attewell discuss Game of Thrones, Season 4, Episode 5: “First of His Name”

[ 41 ] May 11, 2014 |

We apologize for the delay, but Louisiana weather is what it is, so technical difficulties are inevitable. Enjoy!

Audio available here.

Today I’ll be attending a crawfish boil stocked with loaded pressure cookers in Pompey…

[ 53 ] May 10, 2014 |

…and I realized I had an opportunity to present you with an “SEK scenario” before the inevitable inevitably happened.

Keep your eyes peeled on the evening news, friends, I have a feeling it’s going to be an interesting evening.

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