James Wood

Recent

Trick Shot

Sometimes successful films — ones that aren’t expected to be, by many excellent people — spawn copycats, a fact as well-known as well-attested. The followers aren’t as awesome as the originals but they’re not always so awful, and the makers, if they care a little, will throw some new stuff in, or at least get people

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No Prizes for Subtlety

It was the sort of place you wouldn’t be found dead in; the guy on the floor didn’t agree. Didn’t seem to like the floor — but it was in better shape than his face. Then someone had gone duck hunting on his chest. And either another guy was standing in front of me, or

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Can We Tawk?

Comedienne Joan Rivers’ catchphrase was, ‘Can we talk?’ with all that that entails — its rhetorical nature, the Jewish thing, an implication that at least one of the parties will be better off for having done so … Like God. T’other day a priest spoke of ontological remembrance, the immediate and ongoing memory of past-present-future

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Hide and See

Something lost, Dallas Willard said once, might yet be very valuable. One’s car keys for instance. He was speaking somewhat in the context of salvation, if I recall … the general point was calling something lost doesn’t mean it’s not wanted — quite the opposite. Yet it remains … until finding its way out or being found

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Random

One Day One

The birds start by 0315 here, which is when I awoke this morning. They didn’t do it, make me wake-up, they’re not roosters after all, but it was odd, since in summer-coming season — the annual-but-always-unexpected late Spring overcast SoCal days with weather-people broadcasting [good weather word!] ‘plenty of heat on its way’, or the

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Pray Attention

… am reading Ron Hansen’s Hotly in Pursuit of the Real and so for a moment do you then read with me. The title is from a line of Flannery’s I didn’t know but that is no matter; I didn’t know of Hansen’s book until a week or so ago, nor his A Wild Surge of Guilty

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What Price Anger

Anger cost small for years then nearly all. Like decades of tossing nickels and dimes in a 5-gallon water bottle until it can’t be carried anymore not even to the Coinstar or your credit union and if you tried you’d hurt something and badly … or the plastic o’er time has degraded and the bottle

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Not Free

During the Cold War there was a list of countries and their level of freedom. It still exists but we pay less attention to it.  I recall three categories — very free, free, not free — and I remember ratings were based on politics, economics, and so on. So too in man. We are very free, free,

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