Category Habitually Distracted

More Than Just A Sequel: The Empire Strikes Back

Picture the scene: It’s 1980, summer’s approaching, and I’m impatiently awaiting the release of the most anticipated movie sequel of my fifteen years. Everyone knows there’s no way it can top its predecessor, so we’re settling for hoping it’ll at least measure up and remain true to the spirit of the original. Not only would that new installment turn out to be better than I could’ve hoped, it would eventually

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The Recurring, Unsettling Dream of Accidental Reenlistment

Most everyone has dreams, some good and some not so much. Every time we drop off to sleep, our hard-worked brains get the chance to screw with us, and who can blame them for exploiting it? The nightmares vary from one person to the next: I’ve known people who routinely dream of being chased by homicidal lunatics, being paralyzed, or reliving childhood trauma, while my wife tells me she has disturbing dreams of driving

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Have Yourself a Very Troubling Christmas

It’s that time of year again. During the holidays, we gather with family, friends, and pets. We hang out with folks we haven’t seen since last year, don sweaters that have inexplicably shrunk over the past eleven months, and eat and drink like we have no sense of propriety. The end of the calendar year is also packed with a lineup of Christmas-themed movies and television specials. By their final

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The Impermanence of Perfect Things

A few weeks ago, I made a remark to a co-worker about hearing a Christmas song in Lowe’s the day after Halloween. “You’re just a Christmas hater,” the person said. As I recall, my comment was innocent enough, something along the lines of “Hey, I heard a Christmas song in Lowe’s the day after Halloween,” not “I’m suing Lowe’s for reminding me of Christmas,” or “I wish we could ban

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Funeral Planning Strategies

Recently, I said to my wife, “If I die before you, please don’t have my funeral in a megachurch. I might have to come back and haunt you for that.” Inspired by a funeral pageant on television, I’d made the mistake of imagining my own taking place with smoke machines, jumbotrons, and an army of bagpipers playing “Amazing Grace.” If you’ve never been in a megachurch, they’re likely to have all

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Things Just Keep Getting Stranger: Checking in with Stranger Things 2

On October 27, my birthday, the second season of the Netflix science fiction/horror/thriller series Stranger Things premiered. Normally, my wife and I would’ve binged all nine episodes in two nights, the way we did the first season last year, but this time I had another mission. I was helping my father move from Alabama to Colorado. As a friend pointed out, since I was driving through the swamps of Louisiana

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