In 2005, when I officially retired from air guitar competitions, I vowed that if they were STILL going on when I turned 50 (something I thought impossible) I would come out of retirement and compete again. Since then, I have enjoyed my role as the Master of Airemonies for numerous competitions around the globe.
But, a promise is a promise. So last month in Oulu, Finland, I dusted off the invisible axe and competed one last time, performing to a song dedicated to my eldest daughter.
Did I win? No. I barely qualified for the finals, and then didn’t make it to the second round. It’s a young man’s game, let’s face it.
But I did what I came to do, and had a damn good time. And I love everyone that keeps the air guitar community going after all these years, particularly you @nordicthunder. It’s a weird group of weirdos I’m weird to be a part of!
I wrote a documentary that premieres in June at Tribeca. It’s called Fate of a Sport.
Executive Produced by LeBron James and Maverick Carter, produced by the amazing Matt Tolmach (Spiderman, Jumanji, Venom, etc) and put together by many other incredibly talented folk.
“I thought documentaries were non-fiction, what does it mean to ‘write a documentary’?” you ask? Well, it sort of depends on the project. But in this case, there was a version of the film and it needed restructuring, and a lot of additional interviews. So as the writer, I wrote an outline that detailed the scenes and overall structure, interviewed a bunch of people, and helped oversee the editing to make the finished film.
It’s a great story about an incredible athlete:
After enduring eleven years as one of the most dominant and controversial players in a professional lacrosse league that was anything but professional, Paul Rabil decides to take the game into his own hands. Partnering with his brother Mike Rabil, the Rabil brothers attempt to raise the capital, poach the top players, fight off lawsuits, and persevere through a global pandemic to change the trajectory of professional sports by launching the Premier Lacrosse League. To complicate matters, Paul must navigate the politics of playing in the league that he also runs.
This coming-of-age story focuses on Kyle Westphal, an isolated autistic boy who’s fascinated by fabric and emerges from an experimental autism treatment program to become a fashion designer. Westphal’s family looks back on twenty years of his development with candor and humor. The film combines observational footage, archival material, and animation to chronicle how a passion for fashion transformed Kyle and his family. – Thom Powers
What do Joan Didion and Jeff Goldblum have in common? Find out in this book of essays, to which I happily contributed my sentence assembling abilities! Edited by the great @steffienelson. Reading @skylightbooks on March 6, 2020.
Last Sunday on The Simpsons, Homer called me out. I may have to finally come out of retirement*.
*Björn Türoque officially retired in 2005, but vowed that if the US and World Air Guitar Championships were still going on when he turned 50, (he was certain they would not be) he would dust off his air guitar and give it one last go. Now that Homer has called him out, it seems the deal is sealed. Or is it…?
In this Wall Street Journal Travel article I write about the best vacation I can recall since my parents took me to Hawaii when I was 4. And actually, now that I think about it, that trip wasn’t so great…
Soil is at the center of many of the most important stories of our time. It’s where we grow our food. It’s where we find our medicines. The microbes in soil outnumber the stars in the galaxy, and without them life above ground would be impossible. Climate change, desertification, colonizing Mars, the biggest pandemic you’ve never heard of—soil’s the unsung hero, or the villain hiding in plain sight.
There’s a saying: “Man has only a thin layer between himself and starvation.” It’s true, and it’s also about much more than that. Let us guide you on this journey through dirt.
Yes, I’m digging deep and scratching the surface on my next podcast. It’s about soil. There will be puns. But there will also be cool science-y stuff about all the crazy things going on in that thin layer of dirt that separates us from life and death: soil.
Like, did you know that there are more microbes living in a hand full of soil than there are stars in the galaxy? Pretty much every antibiotic we’ve ever found was first discovered in soil. And one-fifth of the world’s population is infected with a soil-borne parasitic worms. ONE-FIFTH!
I had the pleasure of interviewing Scottish actress Karen Gillan (Avengers: Infinity War, Jumanji, Guardians of the Galaxy, Dr. Who) for American Way, the American Airlines in-flight magazine, and she had the pleasure of watching me nearly choke to death on horseradish… Click here for a PDF.
Can religion exist without God? Is Jewish atheism an oxymoron? Find out on The Kibitz podcast.
Our season two premiere is about Jewish atheism, and features Rabbi Susan Goldberg from LA’s Wilshire Boulevard Temple, the president of American Atheists David Silverman, legendary British comedian David Baddiel, and president of the Secular Coalition for America Herb Silverman.
I wrote this piece for Men’s Health magazine, which explains that women aren’t the only ones who need to get healthy when trying to conceive. The link between sperm health and fertility may be in sperm epigenetics…
I tell the story of two strangers in the night, a bag full of cash, and a ship full of weapons bound for the fledgling state of Israel in this special episode dedicated to Frank Sinatra’s jewish activism.
In 1945, Frank Sinatra made “The House I Live In”, a short film in which he confronts a gang of kids bullying a Jewish boy and tells them to stop being Nazis and start being American. It’s disturbingly relevant today. In this episode I also talk about the film, and Frank’s lifelong commitment to #antisemitism.
Guests: Anthony Summers, David Lehman, Shalom Goldman, Paul Karolyi, and Tony Michaels.
The House I Live In (1945) – shockingly relevant today, considering what’s been going on in the world…