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Russell Frank

Russell Frank worked as a reporter, editor and columnist at newspapers in California and Pennsylvania for 13 years before joining the journalism faculty at Penn State in 1998. He roots for the Yankees, plays blues guitar and harmonica (badly), bikes and hikes for physical exercise and does The New York Times crossword puzzle for mental exercise. He is, by academic training, a folklorist (Ph.D., UPenn), which means, when you strip away all the academic jargon, that he loves a good story. He is the author of "Newslore: Contemporary Folklore on the Internet." His views and opinions do not necessarily reflect those of Penn State University.

Articles by Russell Frank

On Turning 21: Goop, Gum, Geysers and Little Men
Column
On Turning 21: Goop, Gum, Geysers and Little Men
79 weeks ago - StateCollege.com - Russell Frank
I didn't know a soul in Denver, but I was too tired at the end of the workday to do anything other than scrape tennis court goop off my body. After an hour or so I would have transferred the dark, oily speckles from my skin to my pink porcelain bathtub. [Read More]
Sleepovers: A Blast from the Past
Column
Sleepovers: A Blast from the Past
80 weeks ago - StateCollege.com - Russell Frank
I have fond memories of sleepovers at my friend David's house. The big treats were chocolate shakes and Jiffy Pop. The big adventure was climbing down the side of David's house using a heavy rope looped around the leg of the bunk beds in his second-story bedroom. [Read More]
Battle of the Bamboo
Column
Battle of the Bamboo
81 weeks ago - StateCollege.com - Russell Frank
I'll be frank (so to speak): I don't like chainsaws. It mostly has to do with the fact that I am morbidly noise averse, though I also find it entirely too easy to picture a chainsaw separating me from various important body parts as easily as a knife goes through room-temperature butter. [Read More]
When the Hurly-Burly's Done
Column
When the Hurly-Burly's Done
82 weeks ago - StateCollege.com - Russell Frank
A functioning fraternity might have abided by the Interfraternity Council's ban on "daylongs" (all-day outdoor parties in Woospeak); members of a suspended fraternity felt no need to follow an IFC directive, so, if anything, life in the Woolands has felt even more out of control. [Read More]
The Amazing Disappearing Student
Column
The Amazing Disappearing Student
83 weeks ago - StateCollege.com - Russell Frank
Five-alarm sex, eh? That's pretty awesome, all right. We will probably continue to have instructors who, for grading purposes, don't care if they ever see their students' bleary mugs as long as their charges submit passable work. [Read More]
5,805 Characters About Baseball
Column
5,805 Characters About Baseball
84 weeks ago - StateCollege.com - Russell Frank
Baseball has always been a numbers game. It's not that I don't see the value of numbers. Reminds me of a mock sports report George Carlin used to do: "Here are some scores from around the league: 3-2, 6-0, 7-3, 4-1, and here's a partial score, 5." [Read More]
This Is Your Lucky Minute
Column
This Is Your Lucky Minute
85 weeks ago - StateCollege.com - Russell Frank
I am pleased to report that almost all the drivers on Atherton Street obeyed the section of the motor vehicle code of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania that requires them to halt the forward progress of their vehicles at red lights. The one that did not stop missed me by an eyelash. [Read More]
What's a Matzo?
Column
What's a Matzo?
86 weeks ago - StateCollege.com - Russell Frank
"Uh, you know how I just asked you about Jewish crackers?" I muttered. "Jews don't celebrate Easter." I doubt the kid heard me. Just as well. I didn't want to give him a hard time. He probably was on customer-friendly autopilot when he wished me a happy Easter. [Read More]
April (and May and June and...) Fools!
Column
April (and May and June and...) Fools!
87 weeks ago - StateCollege.com - Russell Frank
"Stop breaking my heart! People are dying. Our hope is for war to end. This does nothing to hasten peace. You are wasting precious time and energy that could be devoted to worthy causes, not sophomoric pranks. Though laughter is good medicine, your brand of "humor" is a poisoned pill." [Read More]
Apples vs. Icebergs: Who's Right?
Column
Apples vs. Icebergs: Who's Right?
88 weeks ago - StateCollege.com - Russell Frank
If 144 members and former members of a fraternity are entertained by a Facebook page that displays photos that never should have been taken, that too, suggests, if not a culture of rape, then certainly a culture that condones the mistreatment of women. [Read More]
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