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The Sun Interview

The Disenchanted Kingdom

George Ritzer On The Disappearance Of Authentic American Culture

To the person who puts the hubcap on the car every thirty seconds, the owners of the assembly line are saying, in effect, “You are just an extension of the machine.” The same goes for the people who work behind the counters at fast-food restaurants.

Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

Where The Rain Belongs

After three nights at the Broadway Motel out on the highway ($12.95 a night, color tv), seven nights in a forty-dollar-a-week First Street flophouse with free running roaches and dying winos, and two rumpled and freezing nights listening to the rain clatter against the roof of my car, I took to the streets of Eureka, California, on foot in search of an apartment and a job. I had just quit the drinking-and-drugging life cold and was starting over, one more time. I had in my possession a world globe, a sleeping bag, a box of clothes, a battered and thumb-worn 1969 American Heritage Dictionary, a brand-new copy of Writer’s Market, an ibm Selectric typewriter, and the unfinished manuscript of my second novel, which I knew would be scooped up by a publisher the minute I finished it, unlike the first.

A Day In The Life Of A Nonrecovering Alcoholic

I felt good in the morning, almost strangely well. My daughter, my husband, and I sat together for a few minutes before he left for work and she left for school. (I was off that day.) I talked about my own job, as a nurse: how a patient on the psychiatric ward had constructed a complicated delusion in which a boil on his ass and the attack on the Pentagon were somehow connected. He had taped tiny American flags all over his hospital-issue pajamas. As I told them this, I felt almost elated. Was it because I had recently doubled my Prozac? Could the evening primrose I was taking really have restorative properties? Or was it the tyrosine, or the tryptophan, or the melatonin, or the dhea? Who knew?

The Exegesis Of Eating

And thou shalt treat the food that touches thy lips with reverence, in recognition of the labors and traditions of thine ancestors, and in communion and fellowship with those to whom thou art tied with bonds of blood and love. Thou shalt serve first the pasta; then the meat, fish, or fowl; then the salad; and thou shalt sprinkle no grated cheese on the fish. Thou shalt give thanks before the meal and kiss the hand that feeds thee. Thou shalt not neglect to share the fruits of the earth with thy neighbor. Thou shalt not neglect to feed the old and the sick. And, except in condition of necessity, thou shalt not eat in haste, in distraction, or alone.

Fiction

The Blizzard Of 1959

As night falls the February blizzard slips through the streets and avenues, to Montreal’s outlying districts, to Pierrefonds and the last line of houses on Pierre Lauzon, where the backyards give way to the eastern woods.

Readers Write

Desire

He had the cubicle next to mine at work and would visit me at my desk, sitting on the floor and gossiping. We became good friends. Our coworkers used to joke that we were secretly dating, but I never even felt attracted to him.

Personal Stories By Our Readers ▸
Quotations

Sunbeams

One can live at a low flame. Most people do. For some, life is an exercise in moderation (best china saved for special occasions), but given something like death, what does it matter if one looks foolish now and then, or tries too hard, or cares too deeply?

Diane Ackerman

More Quotations ▸
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