The Story Behind the Story “Why I’ll Never Buy Another Peacock” 

The editors of Fiction Southeast were kind enough to ask me about the story behind my short story “Why I’ll Never Buy Another Peacock” – which they published on Christmas Day of last year.

You can click the link here to read the interview: http://fictionsoutheast.org/the-story-behind-the-story-why-ill-never-buy-another-peacock/

And you can find “Why I’ll Never Buy Another Peacock” here: http://fictionsoutheast.org/why-ill-never-buy-another-peacock

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2016 in Order of Publication

The House of all Boogeymen – Honeysuckle Magazine

– Two months rooting around the Internet with amateur detectives who are trying to solve the still unsolved Long Island serial killer case.

The stretch of road near Gilgo Beach, Long Island where the victims were discovered

The Bad Jew of Boro Park – Salon

– Jewish Halloween (AKA Purim) in a blizzard in Boro Park, Brooklyn

Orthodox child in costume – Boro Park, BK – photo by Shane Cashman 

Your New Baby is an Invasive Species – The Higgs Weldon

– In which I list facts about your new baby’s inner savage (written before I became a dad – and inspired by cat training books…)


When You Die, I’ll be There to Take Your Stuff – Narratively 

– My life as a furniture mover for an auction gallery

Photo by Kristen Tomkowid

15 Minutes with Alan – Catapult

– Former Navy dentist, lifelong antiques collector, and Viking descendent

Illustration by Tallulah Pomeroy

On Tour with Teddy Roosevelt – Narratively 

– Traveled around with the man who has brought President Theodore Roosevelt back to life 

Photo by Vi Nguyen

Why I’ll Never Buy Another Peacock – Fiction Southeast

– short story, the hell of waiting in line

“The Solution Center was one of those places that sold everything–though solutions were its specialty. The checkout line went single file out the center, past the parking lot, past the highway. Everyone had questions like: how to sell weed or how to quit your job or how to rob a bank or how to get pregnant with twins or how to walk in high heels or how to swim or how to zest a lemon or how to write a love song or how to silence a shotgun or how to amputate an arm or…”

—-

I’m thankful for anyone who read anything of mine this year. Thank you. Thank you. 

Here’s to the whim of 2017. Here’s to being a dad and a husband. Here’s to us all doing our damnedest to mutate into what Nicholson Baker says of himself: “… a carefree, happy huge shining slimy eyeball of weird wonderment. I can swivel in any direction. Any direction I look, I will find something interesting.”

Why I’ll Never Buy Another Peacock

My new short story “Why I’ll Never Buy Another Peacock” is the story of the week  @ Fiction Southeast
“The Solution Center was one of those places that sold everything–though solutions were its specialty. The checkout line went single file out the center, past the parking lot, past the highway. Everyone had questions like: how to sell weed or how to quit your job or how to rob a bank or how to get pregnant with twins or how to walk in high heels or how to swim or how to zest a lemon or how to write a love song or how to silence a shotgun or how to amputate an arm or…”

Read the whole thing HERE

On Tour With Teddy Roosevelt

I got to do something I’ve always dreamed of doing: hang out with President Theodore Roosevelt. We travelled around to some places that were important to him in his lifetime – talked baseball, politics, tragedy – and about the man who brought him back to life. 

I wrote about it for Narratively.

Major thanks to Vi Nguyen for taking some wonderful shots of Teddy.

And Happy Birthday to Teddy. He turns 158 today.
Check it out HERE

Your New Baby Is An Invasive Species

I’m gonna have to raise a child soon. I have never raised a child before – but I have had some animals and I feel like I did a decent job with them. So I wrote down some advice for myself and others who are due to bring home a human baby soon.

I think this is useful stuff that all people who plan to come in contact with newborn human babies should know.

Check it out here: Your New Baby Is An Invasive Species: Facts About Your Baby’s Inner Savage

The House Of All Boogeymen

I spent two months rooting around the Internet with amateur detectives who are trying to solve the Long Island serial killer case.
I had the opportunity to speak with families of the killer’s victims, private investigators, NYPD, escorts, psychics, and more.
This story had a major impact on me. I came across some things that I might not ever shake. If I already looked at humanity with a severe skepticism – this did not help. But I do think there’s a discussion this country should be having about the safety of today’s sex workers who are too often preyed upon by serial killers. 

Much thanks to @mattmellonillustration for designing the new issue and to @honeysuckle_magazine for letting me run with this one. 

You can read whole story in the new issue of Honeysuckle Magazine linked below:

http://www.honeysucklemag.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/HS-NOIR-Web-Final.pdf

#longreads

CHLOROFORMED GOATS AND STOLEN MULES: THE ARMY-NAVY MASCOT WARS

I wrote a story for VICE Sports about the history of mascot kidnappings between Army and Navy.

Many thanks to the USMA library for letting me dig through their archives, to the midshipmen in Annapolis who were kind enough to pull records out of Nimitz Library for me, and of course to the mascot kidnappers themselves for being willing to talk.

Here it is on the eve of the 116th anniversary of the Army-Navy football game:

Click to read: Chloroformed Goats and Stolen Mules: The Army-Navy Mascot Wars