FEATURES

Lithium Rush

From Businessweek, March 2017, inside the race to get the mineral out of the ground and into our iPhones, Bolts, and Powerwalls.


Are You Rich Enough to Live Forever?

Silicon Valley billionaires are investing in research into human longevity. From Town & Country, March 2017.


California's New Effort to Enact Single-Payer

An explainer for Capital & Main.


Can California's Most Vulnerable Survive Obamacare's Replacement?

How the AHCA would affect beneficiaries and recipients of the state's in-home supportive services.


The Man Who Can Map the Chemicals All Over Your Body

Profile of UCSD mass spectrometry researcher Pieter Dorrestein, for Nature, June 9 2016 issue.


Galápagos Stampede

From Scientific American, April 2016: How tourists could overrun the islands, destroying its biodiversity.


Wild at Heart

A profile of Jane Goodall, from the March 15, 2015 issue of the New York Times Magazine


Into the Wildfire

This story on the science of wildfires was on the cover of the Sept. 22, 2013 issue.


Trash Into Gas, Efficiently? An Army Test May Tell

From The New York Times Sunday Business section, Aug. 18, 2013.


Who Made That?

From the June 7, 2103 New York Times Magazine special issue on innovation:
...Airbag
...Rock Climbing Wall


New Research Points to Brain Injuries in College Football

From Businessweek


Poor Little Tiger Cub

New study shows why authoritarian parenting styles lead to more stressed,lower-achieving kids.


Is 'Peak Oil' Back?

From Businessweek.com, a new study asserts the approach of a peak in demand for oil.


Eurovegas, Baby

Can Republican super-donor Sheldon Adelson's latest casino venture rescue Spain's economy?


Forgiven

From the Jan. 6, 2013 issue, how a couple worked to reduce the prison sentence of their daughter's murderer.


The Zamboni Effect

Are tens of thousands of M.S. patients getting better, or is it just the power of suggestion? From Oct. 28,2012.

 

California�s Katrina?

A map in Businessweek detailing competing proposals for the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta.

 

Pipe Dreams

A fresh take on the economics of the Keystone XL pipeline, for Businessweek.

 

The Death of Preschool?

The trend in early education is to move from a play-based environment to more directed learning and academics. But it earlier necessarily better? From the Nov-Dec 2011 issue of Scientific American Mind.

 

Can Financial Analysis Save the Planet?

In Fast Company, Bloomberg introduces corporate sustainability data.

 

Do You Know Where Your Medicine Came From?

Betcha didn�t know that many pharmaceuticals are manufactured overseas in facilities that never see an FDA inspector.

 

Being a SAHD

That's "stay-at-home-dad." An essay for the New York Daily News.

 

OnStar Wars

For �ber-car site Edmunds.com�s tech spinoff, Inside Line: How smartphones are changing telematics.

 

Cleaning Up?

Los Angeles lures Chinese electric-car maker BYD in the race to become the nation�s green-collar capital. Click on the link above, then enter 72 in the search window to skip to article.

 

Delta Blues

Can California build the water infrastructure that experts say it desperately needs?

 

The Facilitator

An extended Q&A with San Francisco DA candidate Dave Onek, an expert in juvenile justice who also founded Berkeley�s Center for Criminal Justice.

 

The UN's Death Squad Watchdog
With few resources but the force of his title—UN Special Rapporteur for Extrajudicial Executions—Philip Alston holds governments accountable for the politically motivated killings they commit or ignore. From Miller-McCune, May-June 2010

Interview with Christof Heyns

Sort of a follow-up to the above, a Q&A with Alston�s successor.

 

Frank Sinatra Had a Really Cool House

Ol� Blue Eyes� original love shack in Palm Springs (now available for vacation rentals).

 

The West Without Coal

This feature on efforts at the Los Angeles Department of Water & Power (and elsewhere) to get off coal power ran in the February 2010 issue of Sierra.

 

The Trouble with Keith
My Q&A with Keith Olbermann, breaking the story that he was pushing the network to be a liberal counterweight to Fox News, made Rush & Malloy, Fox News, Gawker and more. Replacing Tucker Carlson with Rachel Maddow affirmed this take.

When Do We Stop Calling it Yoga?
Cover story for The Los Angeles Times Magazine (before it became an arm of the publisher).

Soy Story

Debunker piece for July 2009 Bon App�tit about how soy is not necessarily the health food it's cracked up to be.

 

Omega-3s and Me

Another health feature for Bon App�tit, this ran in August 2009. 

 

Inside Blackwater
Despite the byline, I wrote 2/3 of, and did nearly all the secondary reporting for, this 7500-word feature on the military contractor that ran in the December 2007 issue of Men's Journal.

Brad Kessler Q&A

Ever fantasize about trading your day job for the countryside? A Salon.com Q&A with novelist Brad Kessler on how he got away—and made cheese.

London Blitzed
The life and death of Michael Vermeulen, editor of British GQ, according to New York (1995). Click here for the full text as originally submitted.

Robert Bingham
This profile of the author appeared in New York in 1997.

An "A" in Abstractions
A feature on assessment of the latest trend in education, 21st century skills.

Is TV News The Scourge of God?
Cover story from Might on the horrendousness of local television news. (1996)

Terminal Anxieties
May, 1997 news item in the LA Weekly on the chimerical quality of Internet riches. (Prescient? We post, you decide.)

BLOGS

My HuffPo blog

My short-lived column for Change.org.

Lovely people, but they changed the writing guidelines and it no longer made sense for me, professionally.

 

My archived True/Slant blog.

I was a professional blogger for True/Slant, while it lasted; my blog lives on here.

 

SHORTER, ONLINE-ONLY PIECES, UPFRONT ITEMS, AND REVIEWS

What Obama Can Accomplish Without Congress

For Slate, the president�s powers of greenhouse-gas reduction.

 

Q&A: John Hansen

The head of the Nebraska Farmers Union talks about what family farmers are hoping for in this year�s Farm Bill. From NRDC�s OnEarth, summer 2012.

 

How Wall Street Drives Up Gas Prices

A look at the proposal to ban commodity index swaps and synthetic ETFs, for Businessweek.com

 

An Exclusive Look at James E. Hansen�s Latest Study on Climate Change

It demonstrates the high probability that recent heat waves were caused by global warming.

 

Is Natural Gas Just as Polluting as Coal?

The implications of what a study in PNAS says about methane leakage from fracking operations.

 

EPA Regulates Air Pollution from Fracking

Behind the story: what it means for natural gas�s climate advantage over coal. at Businessweek.com

 

More on Keystone

At Businessweek.com, a look at the jobs argument...

 

And yet more on Keystone

...and the gas prices argument.

 

Climate change indicators in the American west

A sidebar in the April 2011 Men�s Journal

 

An idea to make funding for public education more fair.

I had a very limited understanding of how public education finance actually work at the time I wrote this (on spec) for Good.is in August, 2009 and though I stand behind the general concept, this piece reflects that. I later spent four months on a massive project for Marketplace.org on how all 50 states fund K-12 education, which hasn�t been posted for reasons beyond my control, so I actually know a ton about the issue now. Email me for samples (not for publication).  

 

Porta-Power

From Wired UK (January 2011), a small piece on off-grid power sources.

 

Who died for your cell phone?

The link between consumer electronics and endangered gorillas, from Sierra, 2009.

 

The Radar Guide to CIA Hospitality
Zagat-style spoof on the CIA�s secret torture sites.

Got 5 hours to kill in Paris? Then click here. 

My whirlwind tour of the City of Lights for United's in-flight magazine (which has proven there's no reason why an in-flight magazine can't be utterly superb). 

 

It Happened Last Week

The regular guy at New York was sick or something, so I did it for the week of 4/15/07.

 

How yoga helps with depression.

Story in Psychology Today about the science behind these benefits.

 

The Real MP3 Player
Pre-Napster piece on MP3.com in Wired�s April 1999 issue.
http://www.wired.com/wired/archive/7.04/mustread_pr.html

Parlez-Vous F*** You?
�Cop Killer� controversy in France. (Vibe 1997)

Slipping Past the Fact-Checkers
Brill�s Content�s angle on the Stephen Glass fiasco at The New Republic, from the debut issue, July 1998. With Lorne Manly.

Talk Of The Town
The shortest in history? (1996)

The Rap on The Source
On the end of editorial integrity at The Source, for Columbia Journalism Review.

Industry To Might: Drop Dead
On the death of Might magazine, for Columbia Journalism Review, 1997.

Surrender! Lay Down Your Arms! Hail Caesar!
A stunning guide to merging media megaliths, from Might. Accurate as of December 1996. Conceived by me, researched by Zev Borow, designed by David Moodie.

Black Noise
Review of Tricia Rose's book on hip-hop, from the San Francisco Review of Books.

Tortilla Curtain
Review of T.C. Boyle's novel The Tortilla Curtain, from the San Francisco Bay Guardian.

Social Distortion
A review of three reissued Social Distortion albums, from the defunct magazine Edging West (1995). I have written many, many record reviews, and this one is emblematic.

Rollins-Rotten
Review of memoirs by two O.P.'s (Original Punksta's).
(SF Weekly 1995)

Turks vs. Armenians in San Francisco
From NPR�s �Morning Edition,� a commentary on a bizarre 1997 ballot measure. Listen to it.

On the Death of Jerry Garcia
Commissioned for Monitor Radio by Trevor Nelson, who later became a producer for �60 Minutes,� this is a more sentimental treatment on the subject than that which truly reflects my feelings. But it was my first radio commentary gig, and I was happy to have it. (1995)

HUMOR

The Radar Guide to CIA Hospitality
Zagat-style spoof on the CIA�s secret torture sites.

Forthcoming from Gavin Menzies, author of 1421: The Year China Discovered America
Humor from McSweeneys.net.

10 Things
Short parody of the Maria Shriver book Ten Things I Wish I�d Known Before I Went Out Into The Real World.

Operating Instructions
Humor piece on the nightmare that is appliance manuals. From the book 101 Damnations. Buy it here.

City Limits
Funny graphic piece on names of L.A. neighborhoods, from Los Angeles, 2001.

Exposed!
Parody of a �shocking� �investigative� �article.� (From Might, 1995)

ESSAYS

Drop Me In The Water
A personal essay on epiphanies related to rafting the Colorado River that appeared in No Boundaries in 2002.

Personal Essay on Work
All about my work, my dad, and my friend Trevor.

Personal Essay on Food
A story about cooking and what it says about my love life.

Personal Essay on Rituals
Me and the mall.

Personal Essay on Travel
Essay about travel.