Brandon R. Reynolds is a cultural spelunker living in California & writing on how culture, science, art and politics all find one another in the way-down dark.
Death doulas help with ‘squishy emotional things,’ paperwork, parties
According to one statistic, nearly 100% of us will die someday, but most of us avoid the subject, imagining we’ll somehow know what to do when the time comes. But will we?
Enter the death doula, a person who helps people die better.
What Sets LA's Digital Domain Apart
On the complicated origins & identity of Silicon Beach.
Havana Syndrome and TikTok Tics: Many Forms of Mass Hysteria
We've seen "mass hysteria" throughout history. It's always a reflection of the times. Now we may have a version that could lead to an international incident.
‘Right To Repair’ Is a Fight for a Certain Kind of Freedom
In the greater US conversations about various kinds of “freedom,” the “right to repair” may seem minor, but it is a significant power shift: toward consumers and away from corporations, toward true ownership and away from a weird twilit reality in which we only appear to own stuff, only to eventually understand that our ownership is actually ghostly and intangible. Indeed: We have stuff; we don’t own stuff.
For desert tortoises, the road to extinction is paved with solar panels, cannabis, and hungry ravens
After 15 to 20 million years roaming the Mojave, the desert tortoise is in danger of going extinct.
This is bad not only for the tortoise, but also for the desert. That’s because as a keystone species, the tortoise and its burrows are essential for the health of the whole desert ecosystem. What's worse: We had the best of intentions. Really.
Why is LA so hot on flying cars? Look to Hollywood and ‘The Jetsons’
As the production center for American fantasies, Hollywood has been projecting our car-loving past onto our ideas of the future for decades. The result is that flying cars seem inevitable, whether or not they make any sense in 21st century LA.
Flying cars are coming to LA, but this futuristic vision may not solve today’s traffic congestion
Did you know The Future may be only a few short years away? Did you know that you might soon see actual flying cars in the skies over Los Angeles? And that the city has a goal to have tens of thousands of them zipping around? Did you know it may not work at all?
Joking Towards Bethlehem: What If Climate Change Were Actually Funny?
Let's tell the most important story in the world in a different way.
Like China, Like the US: The Summer of Silenced Speech
The difference between coverage of the shutdowns of Apple Daily and PressTV tell us a lot about how we like our journalism served to us.
Ad Astra, Per Bezos: Space Travel as the Ultimate Product
Trapping you in the seamless media experience.
The War for Your Attention Isn’t New: From Disney to Bezos
The history of making you love corporations.
Google and Amazon want to put thousands of drones in LA’s skies so you can get toilet paper faster
In Los Angeles, the sky has always just been what we stare into instead of reading vanity plates when we’re sitting in traffic. But the empty space above our heads may someday soon fill up with drones — delivering our goods, helping police, and always watching us.
Let’s imagine that future LA together. And let’s start with the question that weighs heaviest on our consumer brains:
Will delivery drones actually become a thing?
The big tech companies are certainly planning on it, says Gregory Mc...
Save the Movie Theaters!
The past and future of LA's movie theaters.
Church versus state: A First Amendment fight in the middle of a pandemic
It’s a Sunday morning in September, and members of Grace Community Church are happy to be here. Before the service starts, they’re standing under the morning sky, where the sun would be if not for the wildfire smoke.
A highway project potentially threatening hundreds of homes follows a different script in 2020 LA
Expanding highways and removing homes is one of the great creation myths of Los Angeles. The theory: Where the highways grew, progress would follow. But often that expansion came at the cost of homes in working-class neighborhoods like Boyle Heights. “Getting there” was more important than the actual “there.”