Arguments | Books | Movies | Old favourites | Self-indulgent nonsense

Arguments

Anti-demons.
March 10, 2017

Sooner or later: Cost disease and Canadian transit.
March 2, 2017

Realism vs. fatalism, diligence vs. delusion.
February 1, 2017

Owning (some) blame.
November 15, 2016

Inevitable Trump hangover reflections.
November 10, 2016

Mid-election afterthoughts.
November 8, 2016

Last-minute Trump risk calculations.
November 8, 2016

Andrew Coyne and the lump of labour.
October 10, 2016

Equality and homogeneity.
October 8, 2016

Do crosswalk timers cause more collisions, and if so, why?
July 1, 2016

Brexit: Diff’rent yokes for diff’rent folks.
June 25, 2016

The Know-Nothing.
June 24, 2016

Over-noticing minorities.
April 15, 2016

Tipping isn’t going anywhere soon.
April 12, 2016

Planners versus riders: Metro Vancouver transit after the referendum.
July 4, 2015

Nevil Shute’s multiple vote: Would it do any good?
May 15, 2014

Defending metric.
November 11, 2013

Robert Heinlein and the basic theorem of population mechanics.
December 7, 2012

Um, has anyone noticed this Muhammad video is hilarious?
September 15, 2012

Noise pollution and negative externalities.
September 18, 2011

So did the Red Army really singlehandedly defeat the Third Reich?
June 24, 2010

Flemings and Quebeckers, united in resentment.
June 15, 2010

In defense of the beauty bias.
June 12, 2010

The MetaFilter sex slavery story: Can anyone actually verify this?
May 31, 2010

Those fast-breeding religious conservatives again.
April 2, 2010

Please remain calm, we’re trying to entertain you: Why do people hate funny ads?
July 21, 2009

Ryan Meili, guy I know, finishes a strong second.
June 6, 2009

Selling sunrise: An exercise in branding.
March 31, 2009

Ryan Meili, guy I know, running for NDP leader.
February 5, 2009

Motel Indians, Hollywood Jews.
January 18, 2009

The ill-advised Liberal-NDP coalition.
December 6, 2008

Stickman Jack: Boy cartoons and girl cartoons.
November 27, 2008

Right-wing blowhards and the ’08 election.
February 12, 2008

Pandora and Malcolm Gladwell.
November 6, 2006

On being, deep down, a Liberal.
December 2, 2006

Right deviationism: My evolving position on Iraq.
September 24, 2006

Heading for the exit in Afghanistan.
September 12, 2006

Something funny in Nezahuacoyotl: Mexico’s “stolen” election.
September 8, 2006

Mike Judge’s Idiocracy and my Revised Low Birthrate Theory.
September 5, 2006

Jon Stewart and that hilarious Kurdistan.
August 22, 2006

More about low birthrates and the impending death of liberalism.
March 16, 2006

Bring on the jellyfish babies.
February 28, 2006

Voting day, 2006.
January 23, 2006

Conservative forecasts: Mark Steyn and the decline of the West.
January 13, 2006

Plague vs. plague: The accidental conquest of the Americas.
September 8, 2005

Oot and aboot: Peter Jennings’ “Canadian accent”.
August 8, 2005

The boring Royal Family at the boring Saskatchewan Centennial Gala.
May 20, 2005

Seashells on a beach: Our aging brains.
May 13, 2005

Tuesday Weld: Thoughts on the ’04 election.
November 3, 2004

Birds falling from the sky: Iraq and the ’04 election.
November 1, 2004

Rumsfeld’s “known knowns” and the Plain English Campaign.
December 01, 2003

Scenes from the 2003 Saskatchewan leaders’ debate.
October 29, 2003

The unkillable Saskatoon public school board trustee.
October 24, 2003

Early Iraq war casualties.
March 20, 2003

Anti-Americanism.
December 18, 2002

Books

The Odyssey: Mostly non-odyssey.
April 21, 2017

The medical men of Middlemarch.
September 14, 2016

The old, illogical morality: The Kindly Ones and Darkness at Noon.
April 16, 2016

Bertrand Russell and the conquest of narrowness.
February 27, 2015

Nevil Shute’s bad language.
February 21, 2014

A fox at his breast.
June 5, 2013

Berks and wankers: A Canadian reaction to Kingsley Amis’s The King’s English.
May 31, 2013

Crossing over: Allan Bloom, Saul Bellow, and Christopher Hitchens.
October 27, 2012

Paul Theroux and the Hanoi Christmas bombings.
September 19, 2012

Stanley and the Women, and why Martin Amis didn’t like it.
July 24, 2012

Under weigh? Right away! (Observations on language in Dickens’ American Notes.)
March 4, 2011

John Howard Griffin and other people’s music.
October 26, 2010

Finding myself in a book.
October 3, 2010

Solzhenitsyn, funnyman.
September 29, 2010

Peter Watts is a jerk (but Blindsight is awesome).
September 27, 2010

The Red and the Black: Julien’s game.
July 17, 2010

“Someone knocked at the door as foreigners do” – a question regarding Tolstoy.
May 16, 2010

John Wayne and Girl In Landscape, by Jonathan Lethem.
March 15, 2010

People who write in the margins of books.
November 28, 2009

Catch-22: Not as great as remembered.
November 11, 2009

Homage to Catalonia: George Orwell is not like you or me.
October 11, 2009

Highlights from The Great Railway Bazaar, by Paul Theroux.
July 1, 2009

New Maps of Hell, by Kingsley Amis.
June 20, 2009

Good books in ugly covers.
May 31, 2009

The Brideshead Generation: Humphrey Carpenter doesn’t get Evelyn Waugh.
May 18, 2009

Voltaire in favour, temporarily: More on Nancy Mitford’s Voltaire in Love.
May 13, 2009

…In which I perform a Ron Rosenbaum on Ron Rosenbaum.
May 12, 2009

Voltaire in Love, by Nancy Mitford.
May 10, 2009

Milan Kundera and the ostriches: The Book of Laughter and Forgetting.
May 2, 2009

My favourite scene in Flaubert’s Sentimental Education
April 5, 2009

The Master and Margarita: The best translation?
February 9, 2009

From Dawn To Decadence, by Jacques Barzun.
January 12, 2009

Nancy Mitford (and Milk In First).
December 7, 2008

Holden Caulfield.
December 5, 2008

The Terror, by Dan Simmons.
November 24, 2008

Triumph, by Philip Wylie.
November 23, 2008

Arbuckle Avenue, Evelyn Waugh, and Graham Greene.
August 13, 2008

The ink ghost: Gravity’s Rainbow.
May 5, 2007

Dickens – Chesterton – Waugh.
July 15, 2005

H.G. Wells’ Outline of History.
March 15, 2005

Michael reviews the weekend: 3 books. (Alongside Night, A Kiss Before Dying, and The Man in the High Castle.)
March 7, 2005

Groucho in Canada.
November 29, 2004

John Milton and the power of positive thinking.
April 7, 2003

God versus Robinson Crusoe.
December 12, 2001

Movies (& occasionally TV)

Jim Jarmusch: Rock-n-roll vampires are just like you and me!
May 4, 2014

Marvel’s mannequins of SHIELD.
November 15, 2013

Why Anna Faris will never take a wrench to the face.
October 3, 2011

Dren / Not Dren: The unsatisfying ending of Splice.
June 22, 2010

Spike Jonze’s I’m Here will melt your callous human heart.
March 27, 2010

Reviewing John Podhoretz, movie critic for the Weekly Standard. (My takes on Watchmen, the Star Trek reboot, and Rachel Getting Married.)
June 14, 2009

Drag Me To Hell – heck of an ending.
June 13, 2009

That sex scene in Watchmen.
March 21, 2009

Let The Right One In: The crotch shot and other unanswered questions.
January 18, 2009

Southland Tales is a spoof…isn’t it?
January 14, 2009

Some movies I’ve seen. (Keanu’s The Day the Earth Stood Still; The X-Files: I Want To Believe; and Stuart Gordon’s Stuck.)
January 8, 2009

Kristin Scott Thomas, continued: Tell No One and I’ve Loved You So Long.
January 5, 2009

I’ve Loved You So Long.
January 2, 2009

Confusingly (to some), 300 isn’t an anti-war movie.
June 26, 2008

George Romero’s Diary of the Dead.
February 28, 2008

Alfonso Cuarón’s ideological Children of Men.
April 30, 2007

The Conspiracy Artists: Syriana and V For Vendetta.
September 24, 2006

X-Men: The Last Stand: Not as terrible as reported.
July 6, 2006

Da Ali G Show & Stephen Colbert’s speech.
May 6, 2006

Trudeau, the CBC miniseries.
October 24, 2005

Spielberg’s War of the Worlds.
July 4, 2005

Do we still need the Batmobile?
June 27, 2005

On “The Harvey Pekar Name Story” and American Splendor (the movie).
May 7, 2005

Frank Miller, Alan Moore, and non-crappy comic book adaptations.
April 7, 2005

Hotel Rwanda and humanitarian intervention.
March 31, 2005

Warren Beatty, Deborah Kerr: Reds, Bulworth, and The King and I.
March 15, 2005

Michael reviews the weekend: 6 movies. (Goodbye Mr. Chips, The Heart is a Lonely Hunter, Mr. and Mrs. Smith, Shadow of a Doubt, Tea and Sympathy, and End of the Century: The Story of the Ramones.)
March 7, 2005

Laurence Olivier is dead, dead, dead: Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow.
October 19, 2004

Super-Size Me: Before and after.
July 19, 2004

The dreadful, dreadful 2004 Academy Awards.
March 1, 2004

Signs: God versus the aliens.
December 6, 2002

M. Night Shyamalan.
October 1, 2002

Old favourites

On reading Faulkner’s “The Bear”.
October 26, 2006

Bono, President of the World Bank.
March 8, 2005

Plato and Dion: A play.
November 18, 2004

Rezkallah and Bergstrom and Sumner and Bugg.
September 23, 2002

Yo! Bum rush the Pope! (A scene from World Youth Day celebrations in Toronto.)
August 3, 2002

Rewriting Steinbeck: A parody.
September 23, 2002

Dendrochronology – A boon to archaeology!
March 20, 2002

Song of the splake.
January 7, 2002

Three short porno-clerk plays.
August 5, 2001

Self-indulgent nonsense

True and original…or, why we write (or don’t).
September 25, 2016

My father, Roger Warner.
February 12, 2013

Sea Water Bliss voted off The Duo competition.
September 21, 2011

It’s 2011 and I’m still lazy.
January 26, 2011

Caveat.
September 21, 2010

Who’s the asshole?
June 7, 2010

UPDATE: Not too depressing after all.
March 24, 2010

This interview is too depressing for Colombian web TV.
March 12, 2010

Side roads in Death Valley.
February 8, 2010

The lost “Sea Captain” video.
January 28, 2010

More about that Mendel gig.
January 3, 2010

Truth at 0.25 frames per second.
December 7, 2009

Flipapalooza & LUGO.
November 25, 2009

Dream journal: The vending machine.
November 15, 2009

The Sexy Mathematics origin story.
November 11, 2009

My new thing.
September 29, 2009

Tiny humiliations.
August 25, 2009

Dream journal: Swimming to Filmbodia.
August 8, 2009

Cartoon news.
June 23, 2009

Blogging into the void.
June 2, 2009

Dream journal: Tom Cruise.
April 25, 2009

On being offensive.
January 10, 2009

On negativity.
December 2, 2008

Dream journal: Ahmadinadream.
August 15, 2008

Deric Ruttan: Workin’ in a coal mine, or possibly a salt mine.
July 3, 2007

Dream journal: The hyperlink crossword and the mile-high skyscraper.
February 25, 2007

Old phone number.
October 19, 2006

America unbound. (Visits to Wall, South Dakota; Santa Fe; Mesa Verde; Las Vegas; and Salt Lake City.)
June 14 – June 26, 2006

I can tell when I’m not wanted.
March 15, 2006

A tour of the Regional Psychiatric Centre.
March 3, 2006

My archnemesis, Kevin Chong.
November 23, 2005

Witness for the prosecution.
September 12, 2005

Nathan (the band).
August 4, 2005

The Man clamps down.
March 3, 2005

The accidental wedding band.
June 28, 2004

Dream journal: Bee cereal.
June 24, 2004

An encounter with Black Francis.
April 19, 2004

Dream journal: Exercise bike.
March 12, 2004

List-making.
February 24, 2004

Jungle Gym.
August 22, 2003

Adam and Eve: A work story.
December 18, 2002

He is the stockboy that gathers the carts.
December 2, 2002

The argument from design.
October 22, 2002

My infamous work history: On revising my resumé.
October 11, 2002

Carfree.
October 8, 2002

No sense of history.
August 2, 2002

Dream journal: I am Jesus.
July 29, 2002

RIP newts 1984-2002.
July 2, 2002

Crossroads: A short story.
June 26, 2002

Ta-ta, y’all: A Canadian accent in England.
June 3, 2002

Steve McQueen: A stay-at-home adventure.
January 31, 2002