Google makes waves of progress


Every day I check my email, hoping a certain message is there. No, it’s not an acceptance letter, a message from my boss or a shipping confirmation for those amazing shoes I just ordered. It’s my Google Wave invitation — and it still hasn’t come. Of course, I could get one on eBay for upwards […]

3-D effects detract from cinema’s artistry


Cinematic spectacle is on life support. In some ways, the death knell of grand, eye-popping feats of onscreen ingenuity and artistry was finally sounded this year by the hack trio of Michael Bay, Stephen Sommers and Roland Emmerich. With Transformers 2: Revenge of the Fallen, GI Joe: The Rise of Cobra and the upcoming 2012, […]

Veganism provides healthy LA lifestyle


“I don’t eat meat.” For some reason, these five words can incite an array of emotions: animated nods of approval, haughty snorts of condemnation, or even the puzzled furrows of brows. Vegetarianism seems to be strange to many but finds a welcome home in Los Angeles. So what exactly is the decision to not eat […]

Standardized testing takes a toll on students


For a lot of people, sanity resurfaced at about 3:00 p.m. Saturday afternoon. The LSAT, a monster of an exam, came and went — and left thousands behind exhausted yet soothed and suddenly unsure of what to do with the open pockets of time they now saw in their schedule. It is ironic, then — […]

Online games allow social interaction, valued entertainment


I have recently come to terms with one incredibly embarrassing fact about myself: I rock at online games. When it comes to the digital world of gaming, I consider myself quite the expert — I was taking “Serial Killer or Kindergarten Teacher?” quizzes and playing the Helicopter Game while the rest of the world was […]

Office dating a recipe for disaster


Love in the workplace is usually frowned upon — and for good reason. Innocent flirtation and casual eye sex with a foxy coworker can be fun and harmless. Intraoffice dating, however, is an occupational hazard destined to end in catastrophe. While the ill effects of the office relationship are widely known, even the best and […]

Women directors break out in 2009


In the film industry, the battle of sexes might better be regarded as a massacre in favor of the men. This year, however, is arguably one of the most productive for women directors in recent memory. At face value, the distinction “women directors” seems condescending — a “good for you” kind of backhanded compliment that […]

Drive-ins recreate film-watching magic


Los Angeles residents love their cars. From beaten-up Durangos to two-door Maseratis, Angelenos form a symbiotic relationship with what they drive, refusing to separate from their leather seats and dashboards cluttered with plastic figurines. Not long ago, Angelenos even watched movies from their cars. They didn’t do it in the way that some children now […]

Next generation lacks literary imagination


When I was a kid, every story I read was as big as the world. People often reminisce over their backyards that spanned continents and decades — and yes, I was definitely that kid on the block who loved to play pretend. But more than anything, I remember the stories I loved — their pages […]

Networking becomes everyday routine


A few months ago, a friend of mine decided to jump on the Twitter bandwagon. When I, a social media aficionado, asked him how he was enjoying the network, he merely shrugged. “I guess it’s kind of nice having another thing to check,” he said. I endlessly pondered his nonchalant response. How, I thought, could […]