You Cannot Be Serious

US Open 2018: Serena Williams’ claims of sexism backed by WTA (BBC Sport) In her anger, in defeat, Serena Williams starts an overdue conversation (Washington Post) My interests in sports when I was very young were all over the place. A lot of them were influenced by what I had access to knowledge about; even though I’ve never cared that much for soccer, I still remember reading about Pelé a lot simply because my local library had lots of books about him. My early love…

Read More »

The Trouble with Textbooks

College students outraged over $999  online textbook (channel3000.com) One of the primary guiding principles of my teaching career, if not my whole life, is to never forget where I came from. While I could cite many examples of how that principle guides my non-teaching life, my bad experiences as a K-12 student have done a lot to shape how I approach my work as a teacher. Even when I was still a student in those classrooms, I could see how some teachers were inflicting misery…

Read More »

Badgered

It’s been almost a dozen years since I got my MA in English Literature. When I graduated, I really didn’t have any desire to pursue a doctoral degree in English, and little has changed since then. (I’ve thought about getting further graduate degrees in other fields, but that’s a topic for another time.)  Apart from my feelings about continuing my studies in English, the teaching bug bit me hard before I even taught my first English class, and when I finally got my MA, I…

Read More »

Something New

One of the dichotomies of my personality I regularly struggle with is my inherent need to experience new things, especially so they can influence my art, and my seemingly-genetic predisposition to constancy and frugality (which I completely blame my father for). I’ve never believed that “write what you know” is bulletproof advice for writers (pretty much every “writing rule” I’ve ever heard is made to be broken), but I don’t think there’s any denying that a broader range of life experiences provides artists with a…

Read More »

Rainbows of Youth

As this year’s Australian Football League season reaches its conclusion, and my beloved Essendon Bombers look all too likely to miss out on a finals appearance yet again, I’m reminded of one of the reasons why I chose Essendon as my team when ESPN started airing VFL highlights shows on Saturday mornings (just before my cartoons came on) in the eighties, and I became so fascinated with this strange sport unlike anything I’d ever seen in America. I had basically no knowledge of Australian geography…

Read More »