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The Kardashians accused of supporting sweatshops, I come to their defense

kardashian-sweat-shop-postStar magazine reports (if that’s what you want to call what they do) that the clothing lines of Kourtney, Khloe, Kris, and Kim Kardashian are made in sweatshops in China!

Gasp! Oh, the horror!

And they seem like such fine well-grounded young women who would think less of themselves and more about issues such as global labor rights, don’t they?

Last month I watched my first and only episode of Kourtney & Kim Take New York — the latest version of their reality show. It was awful and of course I watched the entire thing – every petty fight, every naked yoga session, every marriage disintegrating in less than one NBA off-season. It was the mental equivalent of eating donuts…

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See Different

Take a moment to look at my site’s design. See that fancy Made in Label? The hand stitching? The clothing like tabs? The tape?

I love my site.

Justin Ahrens and his team at Rule29 designed it along with a whole lot of other promotional, materials, emails, brochures, and more. Their hard work has helped me reach more people with my stories. If I had to make a list of great things that have happened as a result of having a book published, meeting Justin would be near the top.

We traveled to Africa together with Life in Abundance to work on a documentary about life in the slums. Mainly I rocked my job as the intern to second…

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Big News! Book #2!!!

2012 is going to be a busy year. I’ll be picking, catching, lugging, and sorting food all over the world. Check out the official announcement about book #2 in Publisher’s Weekly!

Where Am I Eating?

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In memory of George Whitman, legendary bookseller at Shakespeare & Co

In 2001 I visited Shakespeare & Co. in Paris. Yesterday the store’s legendary owner, George Whitman, died in his apartment above the shop. When I heard the news, I couldn’t help but think of what I had written about him after my visit:

The old man was nowhere in sight. I figured that when the clock struck noon he dissolved into a billion dust particles, coating many spines and pages, the star of the Twilight Zone episode that would be named the “Keeper of the Books.”

Here’s the full, perhaps a bit cliche, story about my 2001 visit.

The twin black towers of Notre Dame rang in the eleventh hour. The great brass voice gave life to the monstrous…

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My Red Face: Overcoming Blushing

Red face mural

(This is what I imagine the red-faced voice in my head looks like. Photo by PHUDE-NYC )

My face still gets red

Last night I was at a meeting where there was one person who didn’t know me. (It was a small meeting.) At the end of the meeting he asked me what I do for a living.

What I did was…my face got red.

It was an innocent enough question. It’s not like he asked me what type of underwear I prefer — boxers or briefs. Here’s the thing, though, I’ll stand in front of a room of more than a thousand college students and show them my underwear and…

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Build 2 libraries, win a HTC smartphone & a literary agent’s critique of your masterpiece

Donate $10 through Passports With Purpose and you will be entered to win a HTC 7 Surround smartphone and 50-page manuscript or proposal critique and a follow-up phone call with literary agent Jon Sternfeld of the Irene Goodman Literary Agency.

Books Matter

I have 30 books in one arm and my two-year-old daughter, who is wearing her princess frog pajamas, in the other.

This is our morning routine. We get up. We read. She’ll “read” to herself and then she’ll have Annie or myself read to her. She must read 40 books a day.

A 2010 study published in “Research in Social Stratification and Mobility journal” highlighted the importance of books in the home:

Growing up in a home with 500 or more books offers a…

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Who I Think of Each World AIDS Day

(I posted this last World AIDS Day, but when I hear AIDS I think Susan so I wanted to share it again.)

Meet Susan.

Susan is a single mother of six. I met her this past spring in Kampala, Uganda. She lost her husband to AIDS and later tested positive herself. Because of funding cuts at her clinic, she doesn’t receive the proper ARV treatment and no longer receives food for her and her children. She’s 1 of 35 million living with AIDS.

[youtube][/youtube] …

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Porn + wedding rings = Christian Porn

A while back I was trying to think of a name for a Christian porn magazine.  I know; it’s a weird way to spend a Sunday.

I was making fun of myself for starting a pitch to a Christian magazine with this sentence: “I slept with the prophetess.” (I actually just spent the night at her house.) At the time I hadn’t heard back from the magazine and figured that the opening would have probably been better suited for a Christian porn magazine.  That’s why my mind went there.  As it turns out, they published the story I pitched a few months later.

I eventually settled on Porn-Again Christian as the title for my fake magazine, but not before stumbling upon some sites advocating for…

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