“For college student Grayson Price (United States of Tara’s Keir Gilchrist) a spring internship at the White House seemed like opportunity enough. So when he’s told that he’ll be traveling to Rome when the President goes to meet the Pope, he can’t believe his amazing luck. When he gets to the Vatican, though, he quickly learns that tagging along during a lot of boring meetings isn’t the most exciting way to see the Eternal City. That is, until he meets seminary student Francis (Noah’s Douglas Booth), who whisks Grayson off on his moped for a whirlwind tour of the city of seven hills. The city is beautiful, the food is amazing, and, well, Francis is pretty good company. Might something more be happening? Grayson hopes so, but he worries that a young White House aide caught in a compromising position with a soon-to-be priest could cause some sort of international scandal! Grayson has to learn to honor his responsibilities while following his heart in this spirited and oddball romantic comedy from director Drew Barrymore.”
“This scene, as the rain pounds down in sheets and the waves roar in from all sides, is a stunning sequence, all the epicness of the story realized with seat-rumbling grandeur. As the ark lurches up into the water and most of humanity is rinsed from the Earth, Noah heaves with the terrible magnificence of this cleansing. The world truly does feel both drowned and reborn.”


I made this tonight and don’t know why!!!!!!!

I know why.

A small but exciting bit of work news! 

The dangers of letting your sister use your Netflix account. 

The dangers of letting your sister use your Netflix account. 

The people of the story, who live in a dystopian future Chicago, have split themselves up into five rigidly maintained factions, each with its own roles and philosophies: Abnegation (the selfless administrators), Dauntless (the protectors), Candor (the truth-tellers), Erudite (the intellectuals), and Amity (the placid farmers). Why are three of those names nouns and two adjectives? Couldn’t the smart faction be called Erudition, and the warrior group be called something like, I dunno, Bravery? It doesn’t make sense!

When the very names of the factions on which the whole premise is based don’t work in concert, it indicates that a lot else probably won’t either.

“Here is the stuff we’ve been waiting for with bashful prurience. Bored, mechanical humping in bathrooms, oral sex simulated in the most convincing of ways (we see something that looks very much like an erect penis), a long montage of images of male genitalia, fake semen dribbling out of Joe’s mouth. This is von Trier being wicked and flashy, and his nose-thumbing bravado does work for a time. But as the film attempts to bore deeper (sorry) into the emotional and psychological implications of Joe’s affliction—and it does, before long, begin to seem like an affliction—von Trier’s film becomes less nervy and bracing and more like the same tired, frustrating horndog stuff we’ve seen from many a straight male artist before.”


Last night I went to Long Island with my best friend to see her sister, Molly, and Molly’s baby, Adrianna, in Hicksville. Molly and the baby moved down there from Boston to be with the dad, who’s a grad student at SUNY. They live in a little cozy, weird house that belongs to the grandmother of someone they both grew up with. There’s a whirring mechanical chair and a bar on the door outside, stuff meant to help old people. But the old person moved out and now this new family has moved in. 

Maybe they’re a little lonely. Molly especially, home all day with the baby while Soren is at school. Last night, a bad part of me wanted to zoom in on that loneliness, so it might help qualify their life to me. They have, suddenly, so many fundamental things. But is a baby enough? Can it compare to all of the busy, crowded stuff I’m so determined to do? It might! She’s a beautiful kid. A Gerber model if ever I saw one. She’s a very baby baby, I said to my friend as we waited for the LIRR home. 

I first met Molly during the summer fourteen years ago. Then she was my friend’s older, scarier, rebellious sister, with a constantly stoned Alabama boyfriend. I spent a few nights that July and August sitting in their backyard with them, sisters and boyfriend, and reveled in being able to make Molly laugh, feeling a power in endearing myself to this older girl who wasn’t my sister, but may as well have been. Molly has always held that weight for me. She’s mysterious and withholding, hard to get a read on. A really nice girl when you get to know her, but a good challenge at first. 

And now she has a daughter! This small, smiley thing. A thoughtful baby, we decided. She’s figuring things out, while she hovers and bobs in whatever corner of the room she’s being held. And Molly is so good with her. A natural, easy mother. Not too precious, but gentle, and kind, and familiar. My friend said on the way home, “Well she’s been with her every day for four months, so she knows her very well by now.” Which of course is true. But there’s probably something more? I think she’s just very innately good at it. Because she wants it, and there’s this wonderful creature asking so openly for all these easy and difficult things.

Tonight I got drinks with my old boss and my old coworker, who are really just my friends now, and it was good to get a little thick with wine and smooth over old professional worries, to peer blearily into whatever future the dim light of the bar was showing us. We were all the way west, almost at the river, a neighborhood none of us really ever go, so it all felt a bit stolen. Like we were hiding out for a brief hour or two, before heading back to whatever trenches, good and bad, we’re kicking around in. 

And it was so warm today! When I forced myself out of the office to get lunch, Molly text messaged me and said thanks for coming over. I wrote back, saying that I hope it was the first of many visits. They have a backyard, so summer barbecues are hopefully in the offing. I put my phone back in my pocket and stood for a second in the warm line of sun cutting through Times Square. Of all the places to be! Thousands of people milling around, enjoying what felt like a pretty miraculous day. I wonder what any of us who were there just then will remember about it, years later, if anyone thinks to ask.  

Goodbye, Bobby. 

Goodbye, Bobby.