Liquid Ink

The official website of Gint Aras, Finalist 2016 CWA Book Award

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A series of good questions

What should I do if I can’t come during your office hours?

Also, if I can’t hand in any of my homework, what should I do?

Another thing, I need to know if it’s possible for me to miss class next week because there’s like a trip to Texas my mom is looking forward to taking. You know, the whole family. She’ll be real sad if one of us can’t go.

Oh, man, this computer just crashed. What should I do?

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If you’re so clever, why aren’t you happy?

In this week’s True Community (published this past Wednesday), I comment on America’s profit-at-all-costs mentality and how it affects young men who decide to pursue higher education. Personally, I often feel guilty that I’m unable to earn more money or provide more for my wife and family. I know that sort of guilt is learned, and it both informs and shapes the points of view of men seeking employment. The effects are negative, often to the point of damning the guys to failure before they even start learning anything.

Hope you’ll check it out. And please do share.

(Chicagoans will know the photo is of The Billy Goat tavern. It’s one of my favorite places to write in the evenings.)




Photo by vxla.

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Announcing a new column

I’m pleased to announce that I’ll be writing a weekly column for The Good Men Project. It’ll be titled True Community and appear in the Education section. Each Wednesday, I’ll be posting an article about my experiences in the community college where I work. My focus is, obviously, on men’s issues in the field of higher education.

I’m really excited to be back on The Good Men Project after a hiatus of a few months. People new to my blog should know I edited the Marriage section for a year, and I contributed writing across sections.

Here are some greatest hits:

Becoming a Man Who is Ready For Love

Equating Love With Possession

Let’s Stop Blaming Disney

Enjoy the teasers. The first article will run tomorrow. I’ll make announcements here and on all my social media. I hope you’ll “Like” my Facebook page so that you won’t miss any updates.


Lies you’ve learned about grammar

There are two moments I must brace myself to deal with each semester: leading reading discussions and teaching sentence grammar. The former barely exist because no one reads anymore. The grammar lessons keep getting more absurd each year.

I hear it from a handful of students every semester. I’ll ask, “Now why do we have a comma here?”  The reason you have a comma there is because you have to take a little breath. Or a pause. Or a break. Or a moment to reflect.

Oh, let me fart, okay. (Did you inhale? Twice?)

There isn’t a teacher in the world who believes this is true. (Right?) And yet the average student claims it. They’ll talk this nonsense even though they notice no serious change to their breathing patterns when they come across texts loaded with commas.

Let’s accept it for a moment. Comma equals breath. Ok, (breathe) fine. What should we do when we face a full-stop? Inhale the atmosphere? Have a coronary?

What about a semi-colon? If I see a semi-colon, should I—what?—experience a twitch in my eyelid? Should I take a break from reading to go take a crap? It’s a weird symbol, I’ve heard; some people say it’s meaningless. So let’s chant OM or MU anytime we see a semi-colon.

This “breathing philosophy” begs further questions. What should I do when I see an exclamation point? Here it is! You just had an erection. (Women have imagined boners.)

If I need to take a breath when I face a comma, must I drop dead when I come to the end of a text? Is that why no one finishes books anymore?

You want to breathe? Read this: Give me that, dope.

I want something worth inhaling. Give me that dope.