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All of these personal and informal essays, with the exception of "McSweeney & Antman's Ultimate Update," were first posted on the group blog, When Falls the Coliseum

You'll find herein my observations about contemporary poetry, the business of publishing and the future of print; zombie soldiers, soldiers with paranormal powers (these are two separate essays, by the way), and a young actress who returned from the dead; a dead skunk in the middle of the road, a horror movie called The Flesh Eaters and a horrifying performance by Robert DeNiro; America's best barbecue, scariest sushi, and randomest lamb stew; past-life regression and the art of acting; a comical, prevaricating bird and a mysterious, eerie-sounding one; Tennessee Williams' tragic sister and a sozzled old prospector named Cletus; Japan's economic collapse and a brand of Japanese coffee called Let's Be Bitter; and an important new cultural concept called "crapitulation."