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“A Mushroom at Last… A Mushroom Forever”

I asked my 10yo why she was moping. “Because I don’t want to be a dancing mushroom,” she said, in a tone that added an unspoken “duh!” Like most of her theater friends, she is on pins and needles, waiting for Stage Right to announce the cast list for next month’s production of Annie “What makes you bring up mushrooms, honey?” She shifted on her bed. “The cast list.” I…

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Office Hours in the Pool Hall

My favorite story comes from the week I held my office hours in the Brother Gorch Pool Hall. Named for the Congregation of the Holy Cross monk who spent decades in charge of our student center and sometimes played pool with students, it was the perfect location for office hours the week we discussed William Appleman Williams’s Empire as a Way of Life. Near the end of his jeremiad calling…

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Results of the 18th Annual Interactive Fiction Competition

 The 18th Annual Interactive Fiction Competition has ended. Congratulations to Marco Innocenti, whose “Andromeda Apocalypse” took first place! The top three games were: Andromeda Apocalypse, by Marco Innocenti Eurydice, by Anonymous Guilded Youth, by Jim Munroe The winners of the Miss Congeniality contest were: Guilded Youth, by Jim Munroe Escape From Summerland, by Joey Jones and Melvin Rangasamy (writing as Jenny Roomy and Jasmine Lavages) Sunday Afternoon, by Christopher Huang…

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At Age 11, I Named the Curiosity Rover

Wonderful story! I still remember that chilly December day, sitting in science class. I’d finished a worksheet early and decided to get a TIME for Kids magazine off of Mrs. Estevez’s bookshelf. It was the 2008 Invention Issue, but that wasn’t the only thing that caught my eye. In the magazine, there was an article about a girl who named the Mars Exploration Rovers, Spirit and Opportunity. The article also…