Two of My Favorite Things

In honor of the first day of the World Cup, I’m embedding a video of this adidas commercial, which brings together two of my favorite things, soccer and Star Wars: You can read more about this video, and who besides Snoop Dogg and David Beckham are in it, at...

Into the Deep

In the summer of 2008, I had the opportunity to meet the documentary filmmaker Ric Burns and to serve as a consultant for his film on the American whaling industry, Into the Deep: America, Whaling & the World. I’ve been a fan of Burns’s work since...

Best Picture?

One of the programs that we’ve been conducting in the residence hall where I live is what we call our “Oscarfest”: we’ve been taking students to see all of the films that have been nominated for Best Picture (and making DVDs available for those...

Percy, Othello, and the Fury

I now remember the quote from Othello that Percy Jackson ‘s English teacher asks him to interpret in the film version of The Lightning Thief. It’s Act 4, Scene 2, Desdemona to Othello: I understand a fury in your words, But not the words. As a vehicle for...

What Do They Have Against English Teachers?

At the end of my previous post about Rick Riordan’s novel The Lightning Thief, I wrote: I’m hoping that my students see me more as Percy’s Latin teacher, Mr. Brunner (a.k.a. Chiron, the centaur who trained Hercules) than as temporary pre-Algebra teacher, Mrs....