Trigger Happy: The Unraveling of Intellectual Freedom at America’s Colleges


Once upon a time, the college campus was the last bastion of progressivism – a place where new and unique ideas that threatened to break any given status quo were shared, challenged and often put into action. As the new millennium progresses, however, that former haven for free speech and the development of ideas is suddenly regressing, as a new generation of students seeks to shut down any words or ideas that they deem to be offensive, scary, or simply against their own opinions. A new phenomenon has descended upon higher education institutions in the United States, and it takes the form of “trigger warnings” and “safe zones.” Continue reading

Growing Up 90’s: The Wallflowers- “6th Avenue Heartache”


Sirens ring, the shots ring out

A stranger cries, screams out loud

I had my world strapped against my back

I held my hands, never knew how to act.”

Jakob Dylan was a storyteller, just like his old man (Bob, in case you didn’t know), except that his lyrics and vocals were a whole hell of a lot more intelligible. Fronting The Wallflowers, Dylan brought “6th Avenue Heartache,” a song he wrote about his experiences living in New York, to the band’s album Bringing Down The Horse, and made it their first hit.  Continue reading

Funko Friday: Christmas Vacation


Merry Christmas, my dear readers! On this special day, “7 Days of Christmas” comes to a close here at The No Seatbelt Blog with a new edition of Funko Friday. This time around, I showcase the two newest additions to my collection of Funko’s Pop! vinyl dolls, Clark Griswold and Cousin Eddie from National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation! I was beyond excited when the toy company released figures of these two lovable characters from my favorite Christmas movie, and of course, I had to get them.  Continue reading

Jolly Jingles: The Not-So-Nice List

What Christmas music list would be complete without some of the holiday downers – the “bah-humbug” tunes, the breakup songs, or the ones that are funny but insanely inappropriate? That’s the kind of list I’m presenting to you for the final edition of this music series! Here are five songs that will certainly get you coal in your stocking for singing along to, or even liking. Continue reading

Something About Christmas Time

Christmas Fireplace

Well, it’s another year, another mad dash for the stores, another Clark Griswold-style freak-out over the Christmas lights, and another massive hemorrhage to my bank account, all in the name of the holiday spirit. Before you think I’m going all bah-humbug with this, rest assured that this is my second-favorite time of year, next to the summer, of course. I love the lights. I love the smell of a freshly-cut Christmas tree. I love driving around and looking at the lit-up houses, and getting a bit too distracted to actually drive. I love the festivities with family and friends, and I really do love giving, even if what I’m giving is something the recipient doesn’t really need. Continue reading

Growing Up 90’s: Blink-182- “A New Hope”


In honor of this week’s much-anticipated release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens,  which is the seventh volume of every nerd’s favorite cinematic saga, The No Seatbelt Blog will remain in kind, by presenting a most appropriate song for this newest edition of “Growing Up 90’s.” From Blink-182’s seminal 1997 pop-punk album Dude Ranch came “A New Hope,” a deep track on the record about a pubescent obsession with Princess Leia. The band’s Mark Hoppus leads the listener through his fantasy about falling asleep and waking up next to the heroine from those legendary first three films. Continue reading

Growing Up 90’s: Matthew Sweet- “Sick of Myself”


Twenty years on, I remember the first time that I heard “Sick of Myself” by Matthew Sweet. My cousin Brian had just gotten the record from whence it came, 100% Fun.  Brian had just gotten into playing the guitar, so we used to sit and listen to all kinds of music, and this particular song stuck with me after all this time. I wouldn’t recognize anything else from the album right now, and the only other song I’ve ever heard from Sweet is “Girlfriend,” mostly because of its appearance on one of the original Guitar Hero games. Continue reading