This short story originally appeared in the October 2016 online issue for Bluestem Magazine.

The news tremored in tweets and status updates across the screen of Antoine Rogers’ laptop. A man, not much older than himself, had been gunned down on the streets of Richmond.

#SMH How many must die for America to do justice by ALL its citizens? #Racism

He had stood behind a woman at an ATM in the rain. He wore his hood pulled over his head. His face was barely visible in the streetlight.

RIP #TyMarion #Vengeance is mine sayeth the Lord.

The woman screamed when…

Well, he tweeted it. Maybe some people were surprised, but some people have predicted this turn, and you could go through the social media archives and probably find some of those predictions dated in the fall of 2016. He is a rather predictable man, and the only surprise is how well he plays the part. But he is not surprising, which is something to both hate and admire, I suppose, although I mostly hate it.

Maybe he just wanted to float the idea. Maybe he didn’t mean it. His people, those steadfast supporters hoping one day to be carved into…

I wake at the same time every day. My wife tells me if I got up earlier, I could get more done. She also tells me if I got up later, I might not be as tired at the end of the day. But I wasn’t having it. The time is the time.

I pour the same beige-colored and square-shaped cereal into the same striped bowl every weekday morning, and if I don’t eat it quickly enough, it grows soggy. Beating that sogginess keeps the trains on time. On Saturdays, I eat waffles and always use the same syrup. The…

I wanted to call the essay “10,000 Words for 10,000 Ships: A Defense of Spike Lee’s Da 5 Bloods.” But I didn’t finish the essay. I worked on it a couple hours a day for about a week. I worked on it a while in the dining room as my daughters watched Disney+. I worked on it for a while in a closet I pretend is an office. When I switched writing locations, I moved the laptop with its several open tabs and a stack of several books with me.

From what did the film need defending? Well, in an article titled “Vietnamese Lives, American Imperialist Views, Even in ‘Da 5 Bloods,’” Viet Thanh Nguyen wrote some lines that I quoted in my abandoned drafts and that I will quote here too. He wrote:

“For Hollywood, and for Americans, it is better to be the villain or antihero rather than virtuous extra, so long as one occupies center stage. …

A friend of mine posted some of the most recent data from Johns Hopkins about the current pandemic. In the comments, people argued over whether the mortality rate was accurate or not. Some of the comments stating the mortality rate is lower than what Johns Hopkins reported seemed, to my mind at least, to be insinuating COVID-19/coronavirus/the situation that’s troubling all of us isn’t that big a deal.

I don’t really understand that.

We’re pretty much at 100,000 U.S. deaths. The number is likely to climb. Arguing about the mortality rate being lower or higher in some ways seems like…

From NPR

Here we go in the order the books were read:

Monica Hesse’s American Fire: Love, Arson, and Life in a Vanishing Land (2017)

I still can’t believe two people burned that many buildings. There truly are fires of all sizes everywhere, even in the Old Dominion. Probably the most recommendable book on this list because it features white trash Shakespearean theatre on the sparsely populated Eastern Shore.

Carlo Rovelli’s The Order of Time (2017)

Nothing messes with your head more than a theoretical physics book; it will simultaneously make a person believe nothing and everything matters and that both answers…

This delightful image is from a Fansided post titled Click Clack Laker.

Once upon a time, I would have contrived a clever title for a post such as this, but tonight is New Year’s Eve and I have a cold, my wife just got over a cold, our oldest daughter has an ear infection and threw a cup of mango juice at lunch, and our youngest daughter is hooked up to a nebulizer because she has pneumonia. “Auld Lang Zine” will be preceded by an amoxicillin toast, and while we await that beautiful moment *sniff* the fiction read in the calendar year of 2019 in the order that it was read *sniff*:

Kevin Durant signed with the Golden State Warriors three years ago. The exact date was July 4, 2016. This story is inspired somewhat by that event on that day, but also by other events during that week in July.

The bean bag, filled with cornmeal and prairie dust, spun high in the air and, for a moment, threatened to blot out the sun. Then, just as quickly as it had risen, the board’s black hole stretched as wide as any sea and consumed its Icarus-stitched soul. …

The following essay first appeared at Pitchers & Poets in April of 2011. Today is Opening Day, eight years later:

My Southern blood told me it was too cold for baseball. The gray clouds and crisp air set a mood mre in tune with the gridiron than the baseball diamond. Then the gray clouds turned to black and rocks started to fall from the sky: it was hailing.

The game was in the bottom of the fourth and the Braves were down four to one. Winter was not yet over in the nation’s capitol. The players still stood on the…

Bryan Harvey

@Eatthebasketba1 / @The_Step_Back / @Hobartpulp /@dailydrunkmag / @Rejectionlit / @Classical / @TheFLReview / @ColdMtnReview / @Bluestemmag / @HarpoonReview

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