In a city full of police controversies, hippie artist punk houses, and overzealous liberals, Portland, Oregon, is a place where even its fiction blurs with its bizarre realities. Brand-new stories by: Gigi Little, Justin Hocking, Christopher Bolton, Jess Walter, Monica Drake, Jamie S. Rich (illustrated by Joelle Jones), Dan DeWeese, Zoe Trope, Luciana Lopez, Karen Karbo, Bill Cameron, Ariel Gore, Floyd Skloot, Megan Kruse, Kimberly Warner-Cohen, and Jonathan Selwood.
From the introduction by Jonathan Santlofer: "Like film, literature has been no stranger to marijuana and hashish, going back to Charles Baudelaire's 1860 Artificial Paradises, in which the French poet not only describes the effects of hashish but postulates it could be an aid in creating an ideal world.
Modern stories for modern times, Crash Diet is at once brilliant and bitter, happy and heartbreaking. In 11 stories, acclaimed novelist Jill McCorkle tells the varied tales of today's southern women, the lives they end up leading, and the loves that distract them. Sandra knows that the best revenge is her ex-husband's credit card; Ruthie is stuck owning a motel that the highway has bypassed; Anna is a widow who goes to airports and looks in on other people's lives; Bunny waits eagerly for her absent sister's postcards for advice on how to live.
"Funniest "Dirty,Cheating, Husband" Story EVER!!"
In the Middle Ages and Counter-Reformation, some saw Mary as almost "divine". She was placed on a pedestal and removed from ordinary life experiences. Johnson suggests that we "ask Mary to rejoin us on the ground". Drawing from Scripture, especially the Magnificat, tradition, and Vatican II, Johnson describes Mary as God's friend and prophet. She shows that Mary is not well served when she is portrayed as the maternal face of God, or as the ideal woman or eternal feminine.
Jill McCorkle's new collection of 12 short stories is peopled with characters brilliantly like us - flawed, clueless, endearing. These stories are also "animaled" with all manner of mammal, bird, fish, reptile - also flawed and endearing. She asks, what don't humans share with the so-called lesser species? Looking for the answer, she takes us back to her fictional home town of Fulton, North Carolina, to meet a broad range of characters facing up to the double-edged sword life offers hominids.
"So depressing I'd rather open a vein and slowly bleed to death than finish this"
Sister Elizabeth Johnson suggests that since Vatican II we have left the path that strove simply for personal perfection. We seek a life that is also integrated and intimate with others in a world community. She defines compassion as "a mode of relationship with others that participates in the suffering of others in such a way that it generates power to resist and to redeem." As we respond to the gospel message, we are moved through the Spirit to confront suffering. We cannot remain indifferent to our calling.
When Jill McCorkle feels a short story coming on, she goes right ahead and "wastes" wonderful ideas instead of hoarding them for a novel. The result is another extraordinary collection of stories and characters. In "It's a Funeral! RSVP," the storyteller is a woman who takes up self-styled "careers" that suit her circumstances. Now she's stumbled onto one that's so successful that she just can't quit. It's planning funerals, what she calls Going Out Parties, in which the clients are the soon-to-be-deceased themselves.