Popular Culture

Let the Force Be with You

Here’s a little story about the difference between transportation and “being transported” while at play. Cooking up the story requires three ingredients, Mario Kart (the video game), your memory of the first Star Wars film, and a bicycle.

A Tide of Tub Toys

Here’s a story about global toy distribution that’s driven by natural forces rather than consumer trends. There are few things I like better than heading to the beach to get lost in a good book.

Funny Papers: Spoofing the News

Playing with words and images can be funny: joke-telling, trickery, and satire allow us to be subversive without the repercussions that may accompany more malicious behavior. At seven or eight years old, my best friend and I produced a fake weekly newspaper. We pasted school portraits alongside our bylines and painstakingly crafted gossip columns, “horror-scopes,” quizzes, and bizarre feature stories about our classmates.

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