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Author Steven Gaines Tickles the Funny Bone and Tells His Truth

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Steven Gaines is the bestselling author of Philistines at the Hedgerow: Passion and Property in the Hamptons, The Love You Make: An Insider’s Story of The Beatles, and many others. As a journalist Gaines has written for many publications, most notably Vanity Fair, New York Times and New York Magazine where he served as contributing editor for 12 years. A native New Yorker and graduate of NYU Film School, Gaines’s background in film is what helps him to be such a graphic storyteller to where readers are witnesses to the movie in his mind he then so eloquently puts on paper. In his memoir, One Of These Things First, Gaines looks back at childhood in 1960s Brooklyn with a humor…

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7 Stupid Things to Say to Your College Professor

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I’ve been a college English instructor for just about 20 years, and I like to think that I’ve heard it all. But somehow, every year, my students manage to surprise me and come up with something new. So if you’re going to college, or if you know someone who’s going to college, here’s a list of stuff that should never, EVER be said to an instructor. Will you get in trouble if you do? No. But asking one of these questions is a great way to grind your teacher’s gears, and you know what they say about first impressions. As you’re sizing up your instructors, they’re doing the same to you, even if they don’t know it or won’t admit…

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Four Quartets Better Than the Fantastic Four

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Friday marks the opening of Fantastic Four, the latest movie version of the publication that launched the Silver Age of Comics, which established Marvel as a major force in the medium, and began the decades-long run of the periodical that billed itself as “The World’s Greatest Comic Magazine!” What made FF such a classic? Was it how much we loved the characters—Reed Richard’s nerdiness, Johnny Storm’s fiery personality, Sue Storm’s sweetness or Ben Grimm’s heart of gold? Was it their cool powers? After all, who wouldn’t want to streak across the sky, leaving a trail of flames in their wake? Or turn invisible? Or have the strength of 100 men? Or…stretch like Reed? (OK, the stretching thing has always been…

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