August 13, 2016 |
Imagine being sandwiched between Beyoncé and Adele. That's where Todrick Hall found himself when he released Straight Outta Oz in June on YouTube. His visual album reached No. 2 on the pop charts after garnering more than one million views in its first week. For Straight Outta Oz , Hall molded L. Frank Baum's classic to fit his own narrative as a queer, African American man from Texas trying to navigate the entertainment industry. Now, he's on the road touring the record, plus eight new songs.
August 8, 2016
I'm still kvelling more than a week later about how good Philadelphia looked during the Democratic National Convention. Municipal authorities were well-prepared and city workers went above and beyond. I was nervous as delegates arrived and protesters began marching through Center City on July 24 - what felt like the hottest day of the year at the start of a week that promised to keep getting hotter. By 2 p.m., Philadelphia cops were clustered in groups of four or six under insufficient tree shade near the high-fenced perimeter of the protest zone around FDR Park.
August 7, 2016 |
You may remember that I wrote recently about wanting to add a little room onto my kitchen so I could look at a blooming garden instead of a stainless steel wall. I went back and forth about whether I was entitled to spend money that was supposed to be for my retirement on a home renovation that I might not even live to see, since I am half-dead already, at 61. Well, thanks to your wonderful, encouraging emails and also my innate selfishness and inability to delay gratification, I am building the garden room, and we just broke ground.
August 4, 2016
By Antony Davies and James R. Harrigan Forty-eight percent of millennials believe the American dream is dead, according to a 2015 Harvard University Institute of Policy study. Their pessimism is understandable, especially if we believe the American dream is that one can achieve success through hard work. In 1995, 62 percent of Americans with high school diplomas had jobs. Today, only 54 percent do. That's 5.7 million jobless high school graduates who, 20 years ago, would have had jobs.
July 5, 2016
ISSUE | CLEAN ENERGY Pipeline policy flawed A commentary about a U.S. House-approved energy bill meant to streamline regulatory approval of natural-gas pipelines suggested that the bureaucratic hoops faced by energy companies are effectively a "backdoor ban" on fossil-fuel production ("Energy bill to boost jobs," June 24). As a Philadelphian worried about the impact of fossil-fuel emissions on our environment, I support legislation that targets our nation's carbon consumption. A policy that places a steadily rising carbon fee on fossil fuels is a good place to start.
June 23, 2016 |
Nearly 30 years ago, I made a promise to my boyfriend/almost fiancé. If we got married and he really missed his native India, I would agree to move there. He had come to America for grad school, with every intention of returning home - until he met me. I was his American-born girlfriend whose parents emigrated from India in the 1950s, a girl who didn't care much for her Indian summers every few years, maybe because she always got humongous welts from mosquito bites, always contracted some sickness or other, always was teased mercilessly about her American accent.
April 2, 2016 |
Two Brooklyn-based artists want to set up an ice sculpture spelling The American Dream during the Democratic National Convention and then let it melt in the hot July sun. "This is art for social change. Our point is to galvanize people and provoke discussion," said Marshall Reese, who, with his wife, Nora Ligorano, submitted a permit for the structure. Theirs is one of four early requests sent to the city for permits to demonstrate during the convention. A pro-Bernie Sanders group, an anti-fracking organization, and an anti-nuclear proliferation group also requested permits.
February 26, 2016
I AM an Uber driver. I am one of the hundreds of people who circled City Hall to demand Mayor Kenney up hold the law and ensure a fair playing field for all drivers. No doubt this surprises some. Why would Uber and Lyft drivers follow the disabled community, taxi cab drivers and consumer advocates in protesting Uber? The answer isn't that hard to understand once you learn Uber operates different services in Philadelphia and only one of them, Uber Black, is required to follow the law. The others, UberX, Uber pool and Lyft are operating illegally.
December 21, 2015
Robert R. Garnett is a professor of English at Gettysburg College Seventy-five years ago Monday, F. Scott Fitzgerald was sitting in his lover's apartment in Hollywood, nibbling a chocolate bar and studying the Princeton Alumni Weekly. Suddenly he stood, clutched at the mantel, and fell to the floor, dead. He was 44. "The promise of his brilliant career was never fulfilled," the New York Times' obituary chided - meaning, however, the brilliant start of his career. Alcoholic, often drunk, "a cracked plate," Fitzgerald finished only one novel during his last 15 years.
December 18, 2015
IF YOU EXAMINE the statistical performance of the American economy at the end of 2015, all looks well. The U.S. is generating solid growth, producing jobs and creating plenty of wealth. But there's more than one way to judge American prosperity, and here's where things get rougher: Assess the public's mindset and you'll find the American psyche still reeling from the Great Recession. We're far too pessimistic. This week should have marked the capstone to recovery from the financial crisis of 2008-09, but it's going to fall short because of how people feel.