Monster

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The last couple times I took my boys to the playground, there was this guy there. He looked harmless, nice even, a baseball cap, jeans, T-shirt. He could have been my age, maybe ten years older or ten years younger—his long, untended beard made it hard to guess. While my boys hit the slides, the swings, and the monkey bars, I’d sit, let them do their thing, on hand in case they fell or decided to wander off. The guy with the long beard, though, he was all in, rotating kids on the little merry-go-round, refereeing games of tag, and playing this game he called “Monster” […]

Web Exclusive Interview: Shoshana Akabas

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In June’s Web Exclusive story, “Between the Shores,” two people seem to move in parallel throughout their lives, always a hair’s breadth away from interacting directly, only feeling the ripples of each other’s actions but never knowing each other. We spoke with author Shoshana Akabas about this idea, about interconnectedness and empathy, and how our treatment of refugees right now doesn’t bode well for either. Read our interview after the jump! […]

On The Social Interactions Of Bottlenose Dolphins In Maternal Bands

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Me and Marty were just about wrapping up the day’s log on the social interactions of bottlenose dolphins in maternal bands is how we happened to be out on the water at the time. Out of nowhere, one of the bottlenoses plumb took off out into deep waters. Like it remembered it left the oven on or something, it plumb took off out of the feeding ring, which if you know anything about maternal bands of bottlenose dolphins is out of the question. Dolphins aren’t so much a march-to-the-beat-of-your-own-drummer type of cetacean. Certainly not come feeding time. But sure enough, the rest of the bottlenoses about-faced and followed the one on out into deep waters, leaving untouched a whole school of mackerel they already went through the trouble of tracking and encircling. Not to mention leaving us scratching our heads, me and Marty. […]

Web Exclusive Interview: Allegra Hyde

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May’s flash fiction exclusive, “Endangered,” imagines a world in which artists are kept in cages for their own safety. But author Allegra Hyde is more about the utopia than the dystopia—and what with the sorry state of the world right now, it’s completely understandable. We talked recently about utopias, how to get closer to your own (hint: it involves going off social media) […]

Between the Shores

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Nicoya and Daniel are born in the same hospital in Jerusalem on the same date. At 2 a.m., their fathers exchange smiles in the nursery. When Nicoya is three months old, her mother takes her on a bus to the assisted living home where Nicoya’s grandmother lives. In the back of the same bus, Daniel sleeps against his mother’s chest for two stops before he is carried off the bus and down the street and into his home, eyes peacefully closed all the while. […]

Endangered

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The artists were kept in cages. This was for their own good. The world had gotten really ugly, really fast, and the artists, generally, did not have the skills to survive. Most did not know how to shoot guns, for instance. Or how to make bombs out of soda bottles. The artists were a dying breed, in all honesty, which is why the government, along with a few wealthy do-gooders, put them in cages—nice cages—that resembled the artists’ natural habitats. One pen looked like a gallery opening, with wine, cheese, and water crackers restocked daily. Another featured dumpster couches paired with a threadbare oriental rug. […]

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