Rebooting is no nostalgia trip — nor is it snarkily ironic.


Barbecue sauce doesn’t exist — but barbecue?

Reverse-engineering the lives of the vinegars.

Vinegar’s secret history as a beverage.

Bird doctor

The sine qua non of condiments: mighty, versatile, & vital.

Is Sherlock a semionaut, or just a brilliant bigot?

Which of the four hot sauces rules your personality?

The Venn Platter explains the culinary world.

The anchovy

Umami is the savory opium of the people.

1968 sports illustrated golf shoes

Alfred Lambert’s prehistoric golf shoes — from The Corrections.


Tom Nealon’s Foucauldian-condimental history of the West.

Chewie is middlebrow! Darth Vader is quatsch!

In his sunken city, the dead cutie-pie lies dreaming.


Skrulls hiding in great works of literature

Nope! A century-old literary mystery, solved.


1 …Otherwise this stone would seem defaced beneath the translucent cascade of…


Teenage mutants…


Nietzsche’s lonely­hearts ads went unanswered…


An abridged version of this essay appeared in the journal n+1 (Winter…


Psyche­delic revel­ations about the arti­ficial nature of reality


“Once I was an alchemist named Alec, of Holland”

A hilobrow literary mystery…