My Musical Obsession: Music For 18 Musicians


If you have never listened to Music For 18 Musicians by Steve Reich, I will tell you right now: you probably won't like it. Not exactly in the you-won't-get-it type of not liking it, but because it is actually painful to listen to. The piece begins with the marimbas pounding out a single tone in quarter notes, quickly… » 9/29/14 10:39pm 9/29/14 10:39pm

The Grand Dream: An Ode to the Imagination of Chrono Trigger

It's Saturday morning, and I call Brian's name. He's asleep on the lower half of our cold, metal bunk bed that Mom purchased out of a catalog. He murmurs something like a growl, but I don't ask for clarification. I bolt down the ladder, race barefoot across the hardwood floor and down into the basement where hints of… » 9/20/14 9:00am 9/20/14 9:00am

Open Thread: The Day You Started a Successful Exercise Regimen

All bodies are beautiful, and no one has the right to tell you there's anything wrong with yours, but some of us (many of us?) are currently working to change the details of the flesh we live in. Maybe it's health related. Maybe it's vanity related. Maybe it's a role in a play. Who cares? It's your body, and you have… » 9/19/14 1:47pm 9/19/14 1:47pm

Jacob Clifton Interview: Exploring a New Kind of Singularity


Maybe a shoddy Skype connection was the best medium for an interview about our inability as humans to fully know one another. We talk and our speech sounds perfect to our own ears, but on the receiving end who knows how much has been conveyed, how many words have broken up. I didn't realize it as I was speaking alone… » 8/22/14 2:59pm 8/22/14 2:59pm

Say Goodbye to OkCupid's Two Most Worthless Profile Questions

Beloved online dating coach, and friend of BackTalk, Virginia Roberts of The Heartographer, has clued me in that OkCupid is making some changes to its set of default profile questions (the ones that show up on your profile page, not the endless stream of questions exploring such philosophical topics as whether nuclear… » 8/20/14 6:36pm 8/20/14 6:36pm

In Pennsylvania, Both Gay Marriage and Gay Discrimination are Legal

In the ongoing evolution of American gay rights, you might expect some strange occurrences to transpire before arriving at the correct, no-brain answer on how to treat members of the LGBT community (which, as a refresher, is to let everyone marry whomever they want, and treat everyone like human beings. Period.) » 8/11/14 5:22pm 8/11/14 5:22pm

Here's Your Fail-Safe Guide on How to Ask a Girl If She's Gay

Are you a woman who's interested in attracting women who like other women? Yes? Great! Comedienne and YouTuber Hannah Hart has put together the most authoritative of primers to teach you how to sneak in close and slip that arm around your lady crush's shoulder—with absolute assurance that your new belle is into you. » 8/07/14 11:11pm 8/07/14 11:11pm

Gay Man Found Dead in Pool of Blood, Tulsa Police Forbid Investigation

On June 20, Benny Longoria, a forty-year-old gay man living with HIV, was found dead in his apartment, lying naked in a pool of his own blood. A friend made the grisly discovery and told the Tulsa Police, but unbelievably, they failed to notify Longoria's family for over a month. It would be the beginning in a series… » 8/07/14 10:40am 8/07/14 10:40am

Nerdy Chanteur of Ruth Bader Ginsberg Dissent Is Likely a Zombie

Way back in June of 2014, you may recall America erupting in a Stormborn-like rage at the Supreme Court's Hobby Lobby decision, which allowed for closely-held corporations to refuse Plan-B to women on the basis of Jesus. WHERE ARE MY CONTRACEPTIVES? we collectively screamed. But as we roiled on the interwebs,… » 8/06/14 8:00pm 8/06/14 8:00pm