Posts tagged "literary journalism/immersion"
Poster Children

Poster Children

1. We’re in single file, led by an American flag with stars in the shape of a wheelchair, and headed to the convention hotel that I still think we’re going to picket. I can’t keep up. Someone steps behind me and pushes. I’m jealous of Eleanor on her scooter. We arrive and the driveways are...
Strong Men

Strong Men

The men: craggy and weathered, in rumpled flannel shirts and work pants, arms crossed tight in the static haze of unfiltered cigarette smoke. These were East Tennessee men, loud and back-slapping, teeth stained tobacco gold. Sometimes they spit brown bullets into Styrofoam cups. Often, they cried. They were stunning. I could have listened to them...

The Last, Best Rodeo?

A four-hour drive from Portland to Pendleton, Oregon—on September 14, 2010—and you’d have found yourself at the 100th Anniversary of the Pendleton Round-Up. The Pendleton Round-Up is a stop on the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association (PRCA) circuit, and easily among the oldest and largest rodeos in the world. In Pendleton, you witness what passes for...

Death of a Swinger

At first he was just part of a story, one about a bygone place in Atlanta called Riverbend. In the 1970s, Riverbend was arguably the most infamous singles apartment complex in their short, debauched history in this country. A college football player turned cop, then nightclub owner and real estate mogul, Arthur Jeryl Hensley was...

After the Parade

The Chinese dragon comes last, a red and yellow flutter with a black, toothy grimace, tipping back and forth between the crowds gathered along the street. My son steps off the curb to see then darts back to wrap his arms around my knee. I point to the legs in black propelling the dragon forward,...

The Blind Prophets of Easter Island

Jacques Cousteau and his son, Philippe, circle the thirty-foot stone Moai heads of Easter Island. I sit on the matted carpet of my Oakland apartment. He squints and purses his lips and nods towards each elongated face in some ritual of recognition he usually reserves for communing with aquatic life. I bounce somebody else’s baby...