the semicolon project


FullSizeRender-1FullSizeRender Today I went to a tattoo artist, and for $60 I let a man with a giant Jesus-tattoo on his head ink a semi-colon onto my wrist where it will stay until the day I die. By now, enough people have started asking questions that it made sense for me to start talking, and talking about things that aren’t particularly easy.

We’ll start here: a semi-colon is a place in a sentence where the author has the decision to stop with a period, but chooses not to. A semi-colon is a reminder to pause and then keep going. 

In April I was diagnosed with depression and anxiety. By the beginning of May I was popping anti-depressents every morning with a breakfast I could barely stomach. In June, I had to leave a job I’d wanted since I first set foot on this campus as an incoming freshmen because of my mental…

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Cortés Burns the Ships


Scholarly study of Hernán Cortés’ conquest of the Aztecs has long relied on the accounts of Bernal Diaz del Castillo along with the letters that Cortés himself wrote to Charles V, the Holy Roman Emperor. Less known is the account kept by Bernal’s younger brother, Esteban, known to the rest of the expedition simply as “Hermanito Diaz.” These are the same people who decided to refer to the fat cacique they met as The Fat Cacique; sophisticated nicknaming was not one of the advances of civilization Spaniards brought to the New World.

Recently, a handful of pages from Hermanito’s account, previously lost, were found in the sock drawer of a dying, 90-year-old Spanish Jesuit, Fr. Javier de Alonso whose last words were, “Oh, yeah, those. I’ve been meaning to do something with them. Had ’em forever. You should probably take them. Urghh.”

The papers were turned over to Dr. James…

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