From the sedulous to the surreal in cultural context


LOVETOWN: Welcome (Back) to Asheville

April 13, 2015

April: an auspicious moment for a sojourn to Asheville, North Carolina, the “Sweet Cesspool of Sin.”  A homecoming of sorts, a return to the scene of previous stories about the tyranny of choice confronted by the AVL’s pleasure-and-inspiration seeking visitors and the national media’s interest in the Appalachian “Beer City USA.”  Also a return to a lovely Airbnb… Read More ›

“Rejoice”: Readers, Books, and an End to Literary Sexism

  For a great writer, Jonathan Franzen has certainly distinguished himself as a scold.  A conservationist, Franzen’s recent essay in The New Yorker stirred controversy for seeming to reproach those who concentrate on climate change.  Hostile to Twitter, Franzen is also no friend of genre writing: Most of what people read, if you go to the… Read More ›

Tasting the Water in the Craft Breweries of “Beer City USA”

When an area rife with protected forests, wild rivers and smoky, layered peaks is also home to thousands of enthusiastic craft beer drinkers and an unusually high number of craft breweries, amazing things can happen – like when Sierra Nevada Brewing Company, New Belgium Brewing Company and Oskar Blues Brewery all decided, within about four… Read More ›

Understanding the Craft Beer Renaissance in the ATL

  One of the newest beers in Atlanta, the Serpent Bite, its taste rendered schematically by Orpheus Brewing    Buy Local   Nowhere does the locavore imperative carry more weight than in Asheville, North Carolina.  The so-called Appalachian Shangri-La or “Paris of the South” flourishes not merely via conventional tourist attractions like the Biltmore Estate… Read More ›

On art, food, and arson in Asheville, NC

Travel writers love Asheville, but MoS especially relishes its complexity and deep cultural roots.  The influence of Black Mountain College’s experimental artists, the literary ghost of Thomas Wolfe and his unlucky house, and lively debates over food and farms made Asheville more fascinating than ever in the autumn of 2013.    


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