The personal essay is just like people: full of too much information, inherently dull, and a staple fascination of weekend media. The men and women of American letters just really love to get personal on their days off. We reward those who go too far.
This week the ladies were rabid, the men bemused, and the animals squirrely. Click through for the week's winners!
Oldest Person this week is Boston University journalism professor Fred Bayles, who writes in the Globe's "Coupling" column about how he uses Instant Messenger to fight with his wife. Also, according to the article, his wife's screen-name is "Manray888." You guys know what to do.
Weirdest Idea About What It Means to Do the "Post-coital Thing" comes from Modern Love again, for Ms. David's apparent belief that afterglow is all about cuddling with a gay person, "trading cigarettes and sad stories about our respective dysfunctional families and the times we had been in love or thought we had been in love."
Best Compounds goes to Patton Oswalt for his True-Life Tale in the Funny Pages of the NYT Mag about how much he loves guns even though he's a deep green yoga lover. Describing the studio where he does his little stretches, Oswalt refers to "mom-breaths"; elsewhere he mentions his "doughnut belly" and his "Internet butt."
Best Turn of Events goes to Guatemala expert Trish O'Kane for her Lives column in the Times Magazine, in which she all of a sudden realizes that she has "bought a bright yellow kayak and was adopted by two abused Alabama dogs."
Most Amusing Animals goes again to Ms. O'Kane's Lives piece, which, in addition to those dogs, includes a wild peacock who struts among the roses, alligators who patrol the canals of New Orleans, a swarm of birds and squirrels who take over a whole garden, and fat robins who do a "hopping hunting dance as they graze from one leaf pile to another" looking for worms. —LEON