Michael Leonberger

Our American Song

You walk through the front door and you get a hug and you wonder if you detect some sort of hesitation, or if it’s all in your head. Because you are the thing. The dreadful thing, the hated thing, the thing shouted about at television sets late at night and…

Our American Monster | Michael Leonberger

So much of this year has felt like the thing from the grave. Just a rotting monster pulling itself out of the crypt, skin falling off in grotesque, fleshy loops. You feel that? Maybe you don’t, but I think you do. Wherever you fall politically, this election cycle was rough….

The Face of Terror

Our cultural homogeny is one of those happy myths historians gravitate to. The spinal column that any history of a place is based upon, regardless of its inadequacies to describe what it meant to be alive in a moment that was teeming in incalculably different directions. It’s sobering, then, to…

World’s Finest

Superman is Jewish. I think that’s something the modern myth makers over at the DC Extended Universe don’t really care to reflect. They assume because his upholstery is so thoroughly baseball and American that he must be the epitome of Christianity as well, as though there are no other American…

It’s Not Easy Having a Good Time

So there’s this paperback anthology coming out called Sirens, curated by the wonderful Rhonda Parrish, and I have a short story in it! My story’s called “Is This Seat Taken?” and it’s about murder, obsession, and lust on the DC Metro. Basically all the things you need to have a…

Bloody or Redundant

There is a common question amongst people in my age bracket, a telling anthropological detail for anyone keeping score in the future. It goes something like this: “Should I even go to my high school reunion? After all, I can already see what everybody is doing on Facebook.” Which is…

Here We Are Now, Entertain Us

In the nineteen nineties, twin serpents came about: increased media access (in the infant form of cable television and then, more importantly, the birth of the internet) and an expansion of public filth consumption. David Kamp referred to the resulting years as the “Tabloid Decade.” Crime sagas like the Menendez…

Tell Me What You Want (What You Really, Really Want)

I was at a holiday party. Stranded. Cornered in the kitchen. Forced to answer the question, “What do you want to do with your life?” I was evasive. Slippery. Mouth full of platitudes: “Well, I like what I do…” “I didn’t ask you what you like. I asked you what…

Millennialing A Murderer

On January 11th, 2016, at around 11:30 PM, Michael Leonberger climbed out of bed and made his way down the hall for a glass of water. It would be the last glass of water he would ever drink, before… BAM! The intruder nailed him in the back of the skull!…

Friend for the Future

In the book Financially Fearless (which I am reading because I am a cliched twenty-something without any clue about how to manage my finances, TV-Sitcom-Stereotype, natch!), Alexa von Tobel posits that you have to think of your future self as a friend. You’ll only save for the future, she says,…