On the Exegesis of the Soul Or: Why I Love Beef Stick [The Ryan Dixon ...

INTRODUCTION TO THE 2012 EDITION “May I try a free sample?” After speaking those six simple words, the ritual would always be the same: A smiling gray-haired clerk at a Hickory Farms Christmas stand in one of the many Western Pennsylvania malls I visited during my childhood would poke a...

THE RYAN DIXON LINE: An Ode to Black Friday [Best of FaN]

Conventional wisdom has it that Thanksgiving is the one day where family and friends reunite, reconnect, and relapse over a grocery-store-bought feast of turkey, stuffing and wine. Football is watched. Happy tears are shed. Everlasting memories are made. Balderdash. Come on, admit it, if I...

My Life as a Mall: A Day in the Life [As Told to Ryan Dixon]

A bi-weekly blog featuring the recollections of a soon-to-be demolished super regional mall in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania as told to Ryan Dixon. For previous installments, please click HERE They’re boarding me up as I write this. A crew of twenty burly men attach plywood over my doors and...

My Life as a Mall: The Day the Music Died [As Told To Ryan Dixon]

A bi-weekly blog featuring the recollections of a soon-to-be demolished super regional mall in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania as told to Ryan Dixon. It’s quiet now. Allegheny Energy has pulled the plug, sending the lights blinking into blindness. The music, which had been going steady for nearly 30...

THE MAN FROM PRIMROSE LANE by James Renner: Book Review [The Ryan Dixo...

The Man From Primrose Lane is pretty fucking great. Is it okay if I just end my review right here? After all, in an ideal world, one sentence of profuse praise for James Renner’s debut novel would be enough to convince you to go to Amazon right now and hit “purchase.” But that’s not how it...

WATERGATE by Thomas Mallon: Book Review [The Ryan Dixon Line]

In Watergate, Thomas Mallon’s exceedingly entertaining, panoramic re-telling of the eponymous presidential scandal now forty years old, Richard Nixon’s downfall is framed as the inevitable, near-farcical conclusion of one of our most tragic national epics: the 1960’s. As the novel opens in...