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Because; you dont need it

Illustration by Gillian Henderson

Writings hard. We all know this. But today its important to remember that learning writing is more important than just putting words into an “Artificial Inteligence Program’ that will tell you, you’re writings good.

I edit my own work, I proofread, my own work. Sometimes, for important work, I have my writing mentor check for places where I can improve, my work. He will check for dangling modifiers, split infinitives, subject/verb agreement. He always sends it back real fast and says, “looks good”, so I know my work is good.

Not me, but close. Image Credit: George Rudy / ShutterStock

Not to brag, but I’m awesome at virtual kindergarten.

I love this idea and format. I must credit Zulie Rane, Danny Forest, and Violet Daniels, who, as far as I’m aware, came up with it. Also, a shout out and thanks to Quy Ma and Jennifer Marie. “About Me Stories” is a wonderful way to foster a sense of community, and I’m thrilled to learn more about my fellow Medium dwellers!

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Hi! I’m JL Matthews. I’m about forty years old and happily-married. …

A Lithograph of the Peacemaker Explosion, N. Currier (firm), Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

The Story of Love, Death, and Politics Aboard the USS Princeton

It was a Wednesday, February 28th, 1844. The weather was unexpectedly warm, what one guest later called “almost a summer sky.” Dignitaries from all over Washington had gathered for a pleasant, peaceful cruise down the Potomac.

Most considered the trip a brief distraction from official duties, a bit of pomp to celebrate America’s growing military might.

Yet, when the ship returned a few hours later, some passengers would be dead, others would be in love, and the course of United States history would be forever changed.

The Ship

The history behind Kronia, Saturnalia, and Lupercalia.

Image by Joanna Maitland from Pixabay

Kronia / Saturnalia / Christmas

The Greek festival of Kronia, held in summer, celebrated the mythical utopia known as ‘The Golden Age’ when Cronus ruled Earth.

The Greeks celebrated Kronia by recreating aspects of the Golden Age. Owners released their slaves from household chores, invited them to sup at their table, and played dice and other games of chance.

The Romans, who derived much of their culture from the Greeks, adopted and modified the festival. They called the holiday ‘ Saturnalia’, after the Roman god, Saturn.

Instead of celebrating during harvest time, the Romans observed Saturnalia during the winter solstice week in December.

For the…

Image Credit: Syda Productions / ShutterStock

What is a ‘Secondary Offering’?

“The markets can remain irrational longer than you can remain solvent.”

-John Maynard Keynes

For those that aren’t aware, Gamestop (NYSE: GME), the video-game retailer, has seen its stock soar from $5 to $500 in the last few weeks.

Some people — mostly novice traders — have made a ton of money.

Many of them, working in concert on social media, intend to ‘take GME to the moon’.

Unfortunately, it’s unlikely that this story will end well.


There are many reasons, but perhaps the one that will shock and anger the online legions of Gamestop’s supporters the most is…

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

Is there anything funnier than relationships?



Farting ducks?


But relationships— with all of their blunders, mistakes, and disappointments — must be a close second.

With that in mind, Catherine Weingarten and Gracie Beaver-Kairis (hey, beavers are funny animals too!) want your silly Valentine’s Day pieces.

They’re looking for witty, goofy, absurd, or otherwise nonsensical pieces that are less than 1,000 words.

They’d love to see some illustrations.

Unless they are illustrations of duck farts.

Or beaver farts.

Full details can be found here.

Submissions are open through February 12th.

Catherine and Gracie Beaver-no-fan-of-duck-farts-Kairis will publish the best…

“Clothes can be a dreadful thing for lonely people once their loneliness has started.”

Image Credit: Ranta Images via ShutterStock

Some people, indeed many people, ask me why I write in the nude.

They ask:

“Is it to prevent distractions?”

“Do you not have air conditioning?”

“Can you please cover yourself during this symposium, professor?”

To them, I answer:

Tolstoy. Joyce. Hemingway.

What was it that defined these titans of the written word?

Their marvelous characters? Their unmistakable style? Their keen understanding of the human condition?


But also, it was their affinity for writing in the nude.

Take War and Peace, considered by many to be the greatest novel ever written. Tolstoy meticulously researched the Napoleonic era. …

Photo by Jamie Haughton on Unsplash

Is something rotten in Denmark?

If you’ve ever wondered what sort of hijinks would ensue for a man with a comically long, prehensile ‘pee-pee’, you might just work for Danish television.

DR, the Danish equivalent of PBS or the BBC, recently launched a show titled John Dillermand. In the show, ‘Dillermand’ (the literal translation is ‘penis-man’) gets himself and his…well…you know…fella into all sorts of trouble in his Danish hometown.


Yes, whether ‘Dillermand’ is getting ‘himself’ caught on a bus, between garden shears (yikes!), or using ‘himself’ as a pogo stick, ‘Dillermand’ just can’t stop getting into awkward situations.

But the fascinating (and serious)…

Postage stamp featuring Laika, scanned by user Neozoon, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Since the dawn of spaceflight in the 1940s, animals have led the way.

Since the dawn of spaceflight in the 1940s, animals have led the way.

Scientists relied on the crucial data gathered by these ‘animal astronauts’ to determine the biological limits of space travel.

So, it’s fair to say that there would never have been a man on the moon without some of these animal explorers.

Fruit Flies

We have our problems with them, but bugs and humans inhabit many of the same places. Which is why some of the first creatures to ride a rocket were fruit flies.

With their basic anatomy and short life span, scientists used the fruit flies to answer…

A plea to stop using them — before they drive me insane.

Photo by JESHOOTS.COM on Unsplash

Ok, let’s start with the featured image: “The woman biting on the pencil.”

Look, I get it. You just wrote a 1,500 word post about how annoying it is that your boyfriend/girlfriend/husband/wife/boss/parent/dog doesn’t listen to you.

So you went looking for a picture of ‘frustrated’ and this is what comes up.

Please — I’m begging you. Keep looking. Trust me. We’ve all seen it by now.

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