Christopher Sandford

Christopher Sandford is the author of numerous books, including Masters of Mystery: The Strange Friendship of Arthur Conan Doyle and Harry Houdini (St. Martin’s Press).

Latest by Christopher Sandford in Chronicles

Results: 60 Articles found.
  • Seattle's Summer of Hate
    August 2020

    Seattle's Summer of Hate

    The Summer of Love signified an experiment in unfettered freedom of expression and peaceful self-rule which seemed to promise great things then. It bears little resemblance to the scenes on Seattle’s Capitol Hill as I have recently experienced them.

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  • Is Seattle Dying?
    January 2020

    Is Seattle Dying?

    Not long ago, I found myself sitting one sunny Friday afternoon in the Unity Museum in Seattle, notebook in hand, as a group of fresh-faced college undergraduates participated in a debate over whether or not their city is dying. The general conclusion of the affair and the grim message of the students was that it is indeed.

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  • Lost and Found in America
    January 2019

    Lost and Found in America

    One Saturday night last summer I found myself sitting on a warm, grassy knoll outside Missoula, Montana, watching a blood-red sun set behind a cup in the hills with the snow-fringed Bitterroot Mountains beyond, while in the foreground an elfin, 70-year-old man dressed entirely in black leather, accompanied by an energetically hair-swinging band, blasted out a heavily amplified song called “Feed My Frankenstein.”

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  • Ask Jeeves
    September 2018

    Ask Jeeves

    Some of the best-loved characters in English literature are observed only dimly through the eyes of an unreliable first-person narrator; like fish seen through the glass of a tank, they swim toward us, momentarily dazzling in their colors, before receding again into the murk.

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  • American Artisan
    February 2018

    American Artisan

    Whenever Robert Valade embarked on a commissioned piece, or simply took his hammer and chisel to cut an exquisitely fashioned design into a gift for a friend, he first bowed his large head and prayed to God to help him finish the job right.

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  • January 8, 2018

    Gone to Pot

    It is seven o’clock on a peaceful late-summer evening here in suburban Seattle, and I’m sitting in my back garden smoking marijuana.

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  • December 4, 2017

    To See and to Speak

    Most retrospectives take the Swinging Sixties, and more particularly Swinging London, on their own terms. “Society was shaken to its foundations!” a 2011 BBC documentary on the subject shouted.

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  • Khrushchev and Me
    October 2017

    Khrushchev and Me

    Around 50 years ago Basil D’Oliveira, a South African-born, olive-skinned professional cricketer who emigrated to England and qualified to play for his adopted home’s national team, was as controversial a sportsman in his way as Muhammad Ali, or Tommie Smith and John Carlos, or even the NFL’s cretinous Colin Kaepernick today.

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  • The Cottingley Fairies, and Fatima
    August 2017

    The Cottingley Fairies, and Fatima

    Arthur Conan Doyle once wrote that the idea of an acceptable form of public entertainment underwent a rude shock in the years around World War I. By then in his mid-50’s, he had abandoned any pretense of sympathy for modern culture.

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  • May 25, 2017

    True Grit

    A remark one often hears from the current crop of film critics is that John Wayne might indeed merit the iconographic status conferred on him by tens of millions of ordinary cinemagoers around the world, were it not for the troubling matter of his alleged evasion of military service during World War II.

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  • Sicced on Citizens
    April 2017

    Sicced on Citizens

    Nowadays, the federal government is the closest thing many Americans have to a religion, with those employed by it regarding themselves as a priesthood. Blind faith, if not dependency, tends to take over from observation.

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  • The Satan Club
    March 2017

    The Satan Club

    It is often said that our nation’s social-engineering laws are for the most part well intentioned, and that only in their local application do they seem to pander so brazenly to the obsessed or the lunatic.

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  • Sounds of the Sixties
    February 2017

    Sounds of the Sixties

    To address the main question first: Yes, they really can. That’s the definitive answer to America’s burning cultural debate of the 1960’s about whether or not the Monkees could actually play their musical instruments.

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  • January 2017

    Our Progressive Sexual Apartheid

    I recently attended a rock concert where the headline act—an artful blend of political correctness and antic comedy dressed in a leopard-skin overcoat under a silver wig—lectured us at some length on the need to respect women.

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  • Gone to Pot
    December 2016

    Gone to Pot

    It is seven o’clock on a peaceful late-summer evening here in suburban Seattle, and I’m sitting in my back garden smoking marijuana. Passively smoking, I should add, lest I shock any reader by this sorry lapse, but smoking nonetheless.

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  • October 2016

    Pomp and Circumstance

    As a nation, Britain has become accustomed to marking milestones in the reign of Elizabeth II.

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  • The Sentinel
    July 2016

    The Sentinel

    “Don’t mention the war,” my grandfather told me a few minutes before our guest, an old friend from the Business Administration faculty at the nearby university, joined us for lunch.

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  • Sizing Up the Feline Uproar
    May 2016

    Sizing Up the Feline Uproar

    In London recently, I found that many of the locals had stayed up until the early hours of a wet Monday morning to watch Super Bowl 50 on television, and judging from the T-shirts being paraded around town there seems to be a particular groundswell of support among British youth for the 49ers, the Cowboys, and the Redskins, names all richly evocative of the American frontier experience.

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  • March 2016

    EMP (“Are You Experienced?”)

    Is rock music truly an art? This question has never met with a straightforward answer, either by the musicians themselves or the many who venerate them, and it hangs over the massive bulk of the Experience Music Project and the Science Fiction and Fantasy Hall of Fame here in Seattle.

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  • January 2016

    The Future of Publishing

    In 2004, a middle-aged English businessman named George Courtauld decided to put together a slim, illustrated album for his three young sons. It was called The Pocket Book of Patriotism.

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Results: 60 Articles found.