Travel Writing by Cory Hanson

Cycling the Aran Island of Inishmore

Cliffs on Inishmore County Galway Aran Islands Ireland

“Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!” Without waiting to hear the quick sales from the row of brochure-waving pitchpeople on the gangplank, I’m smiling and grabbing every one — boat rides, bike rentals, restaurants, snorkeling adventures — doing my best impression of Will Ferrell in Elf as young, naive Buddy builds his own impressive collection of ad […]

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Book Review – Richmond Barracks 1916: “We Were There” – 77 Women of the Easter Rising

“The old idea that a woman can only serve her nation through her home is gone.” —Countess Constance Markievicz, Irish social activist, revolutionary, and politician We are currently in the middle of a big decade for Ireland. From 2012–2022, the modern Republic of Ireland celebrates the 100-year anniversaries of the some of the most important moments […]

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A Christmas Morning Shave in Istanbul

The Barber Flashing the Flame

“Good morning! Happy Christmas!” Our hostel hosts are giving all of the white, Western faces emerging from their rooms the compliments of the season with the more internationally known “happy” rather than the American favorite “merry.” Here in Istanbul, with deep cultural and religious roots in both Christianity and Islam, everyone knows and respects each […]

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The Cubs Break a Curse

A Dejected Hotdog

The Chicago Cubs, after more than a century of close calls, almost-theres, goats, ghosts, and an unfortunate man in a green turtleneck and even more unfortunate headphones, have won the 2016 World Series. In doing so, they have broken one of the oldest and most famous American sports curses. Like the Curse of the Bambino in Boston (1918–2004) […]

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Irish Thanksgiving Memories

Thanksgiving

Now that we’re back in the land of freedom and frappuccinos and the kind of football that requires a helmet and a 400-page manual detailing the finer points of what constitutes catching a ball, we can again celebrate one of my favorite American holidays with friends and family. But in preparing for a day of […]

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Top Destinations in County Tipperary

River Suir Tipperary Heritage Trail Cashel Golden Cahir Ireland

With quiet villages and bustling towns, miles of country roads and paths, and a wealth of historical and archaeological treasures, County Tipperary in south-central Ireland has something for travelers of every taste. Rock of Cashel On a massive hunk of granite in the middle of the “Golden Vale” of Tipperary — a fertile stretch of […]

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Top Destinations in County Meath

The Many Faces of Trim Castle

County Dublin’s northwestern neighbor once enjoyed far more political influence on the Irish than the tribes living in what is now Ireland’s capital city. The ancient Kingdom of Meath traces its roots back to ancient settlers who had a flourishing society and built lasting structures long before the Ancient Egyptians build the pyramids. For centuries […]

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My First Fourteener or, Oxygen Debt: a Hip-Hop Musical

Pike's Peak, Crags, Devil's Playground, Colorado, Hiking

“We been spendin’ most our lives livin’ in an Amish paradise. We’re all crazy Mennonites livin’ in an Amish paradise!” The ever-looping random playlist that constantly streams through my head abruptly shifts to the “Weird Al” Yankovic classic “Amish Paradise” — one of the only “rap” songs I can sing flawlessly, word-for-amazing-word — as we […]

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Five Destinations in County Kerry

The Skelligs Bray Head Valentia Island County Kerry Ireland

One of Ireland’s most-visited counties — for very good reason — is “The Kingdom” of Kerry. Dotted with historic towns and villages, Ireland’s highest mountain range, and some of the best coastal scenery anywhere in the world, Kerry should be near the top of your Ireland wish list. Killarney National Park For many, the charming town of […]

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Five Destinations in County Clare

The Cliffs of Moher

The west of Ireland is world-famous for quaint villages, the lilt of the Irish language, and spectacular outdoor beauty. You’ll find some of the best of all three in County Clare. Ennis The largest town in the county will probably be your first stop after your arrival at Shannon Airport on your way north. Take […]

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Writing Music: Biohazard

Heavy Metal

This is part of an ongoing series discovering and reviewing heavy metal bands in the order in which they appear in The Encyclopedia of Heavy Metal by Daniel Bukszpan. Check out the rest of the series and stay tuned for new reviews each week. Until I finish this book, stay heavy, my friends. Maybe the reason the Resident Evil series of video […]

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The Most Irish Things to Do in Dublin 

Dublin Mountains

If you’re coming to Dublin, especially if it won’t be your first time, consider going beyond the traditional tourist hotspots (which, in fairness, can be a blast) and experiencing Ireland’s capital city like a local. You’ll have to explain your photos (practicing the time-honored Irish art of storytelling) to your friends and family, and there will […]

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