Culture Clips: Are You Getting up for the Royal Wedding?

royal wedding

I pride myself on knowing what’s happening in the world and culture. But I had a funny exchange with my wife last week. We were watching TV when an add came on for an upcoming special titled something like, Meghan Markle: An American Princess. “She’s American?!” I asked, somewhat startled. I’d missed that little factoid. […]

Continue Reading

The Clanging Cringiness of Musical.ly

Musical.ly

We’ve all heard about Facebook and Instagram, YouTube and Twitter. Certain apps and social media platforms are as ubiquitous as, well, the smartphone you’re probably clutching in your hand right now. But kids flock to some apps that we parents are sometimes woefully unaware of. The Musical.ly app may be one of those. On the […]

Continue Reading

Put Down That Remote! Binge-Watching Can Be Bad for You

binge

On May 18, Netflix will roll out the second season of one of its buzziest, most controversial and, let’s face it, most bingeable shows: 13 Reasons Why. We wrote quite a bit about the show’s first season, beginning with our review and spiraling out from there. (Our parents’ guide to the series will be updated […]

Continue Reading

Culture Clips: Siri, Who’s the Smartest Digital Assistant?

These days, digital assistants such as Apple’s Siri, Amazon’s Alexa and Google’s, erm, Assistant can deliver answers, directions, pizza and tons of other stuff just by asking. So USA Today set out to find out which of these virtual answer bots was the most accurate. The short answer probably shouldn’t come as a surprise: “We […]

Continue Reading

Culture Clips: It’s a Crazy World … So Eat Dinner as a Family

You don’t have to look further than your news feed to find plenty of disheartening news. And we’ll deal with some of that shortly. But before our weekly deep-dive into the overlapping realms of entertainment, popular culture and what’s happening with kids today, I thought we’d begin with an encouraging reminder from Homeword’s Jim Burns: […]

Continue Reading

Maturity Matters

Common sense would tell us that people’s personal maturity will influence their careers, their lives and their relationships, regardless of how talented they are. Alas, common sense isn’t as common these days as perhaps it once was. For decades now—stretching back at least as far as political scandals in the ’80s and ’90s, and maybe […]

Continue Reading

Culture Clips: This Email Will Self-Destruct …

burning envelope

“This tape will self-destruct in five seconds.” Mission Impossible fans will, of course, recognize that iconic line from the original 1960s and ’70s TV series. (And, of course, the franchise’s amped-up Tom Cruise reboot since then.) We don’t use tape much anymore, obviously, but Google seems to have something similar in mind with its latest […]

Continue Reading

Culture Clips: The Unliking Facebook Edition

thumbs down

Ah, Facebook. Welcome back, old friend. We’ve seen quite a bit of you these days—well, in our Culture Clips blog, at least. Every time I visit you myself, you ask me to tell you my social security number and demand that I vote for Vladimir Putin for our local school board. Well, maybe that’s stretching […]

Continue Reading

How to Fix the Oscars

oscars

Well, here we are, nearly a week after the 90th Academy Awards sported record-low viewership numbers. Nielsen suggested they were seen only by a handful of wandering channel-surfers and that strange guy down the street who collects antique dog bowls. No, seriously, only about 26.5 million people tuned in. As reported on Wednesday, that’s a […]

Continue Reading

Finding God in a Bad Commercial

It’s been said that God works in mysterious ways. Sometimes even through a controversial Ram Truck commercial. We’ve already mentioned that commercial Wednesday, of course. The manufacturer (or, rather, its advertising agency) put together an advertisement pairing video clips of its truck helping folks do good things with the words of a Martin Luther King […]

Continue Reading

R.I.P. CDs

CDs

I bought a CD last night. (Rock guitar instrumentalist Joe Satriani’s latest release, if you must know. But I digress already.) I bought it because even though I listen to tons of music digitally (streaming, and in my 15-year-old iTunes library), I just like having a real, physical copy of my music. It’s tactile. Reliable. […]

Continue Reading

Culture Clips: About Those Super Bowl Ads …

super bowl ads

A few days ago, the world was treated to one of the best Super Bowls in history. But some viewers couldn’t have  cared less about the game: They were in it for the commercials. Advertisers go all out for their Super Bowl spots, and well they should. In this age of entertainment fragmentation, the Big […]

Continue Reading