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Greetings, readers!

The Busy Signal is a contribution based website, established  in March 2010.

We regularly post new original essays, focused on issues of the day—politics, policy, culture (which, yes, includes TV) and ideas—that are either in short or long form, but with the intention to start a conversation.

The website is run by Henry Casey and Julia Wentzel, and is supported by the contributions of excellent folks from near and far. You may reach the editors at

We thank you again for visiting and watching the site grow. We appreciate it, and there is much more to come.

Check back often, comment vigorously, repost our entries on your blog, follow your favorite contributors, and write to us with questions at

J.A. Myerson, Editor Emeritus, is the Artistic Director of Full of Noises and a teaching artist with Urban Arts Partnership. He writes primarily on American Politics and Human Rights. Follow him on Twitter, and at his new platform: He co-founded the site in early 2010.

Henry Casey, Editor-in-Chief, has been published in a vanity publication of a major watch maker, sometimes blogs at With A Passion, and since graduating Bard College in 2006 has worked in the art book industry and now for a major metropolitan museum in New York City, where he was born and raised.

Since completing a bachelor’s in political science at Bard College in 2009, Julia Wentzel, Managing Editor, has returned home to the Pacific Northwest, and now lives in Seattle, Washington.  She works in marketing and communications for a legal research startup, and plays outside.

Akie Bermiss is a pianist, composer, and singer living and working in New York City.  He has been a Man of Letters since he was still in his small-clothes but began writing music criticism in his college years.  He is a graduate of Bard College with  degree in music composition.  While there he also studied American Music (read: tin pan alley, broadway musicals, and jazz) and writing (read: wrote some bad poetry and called it good). To his friends, he is considered a musical snob of the highest order; to his enemies — a musical charlatan of the basest variety.  Among other things he is also the author of a children’s book (“I Hate to Be Sick” — out on Scholastic), a lover of science fiction, a huge fan of cigars, and he takes his bourbon: neat.

Brian Fabry Dorsam is a co-founder of Skin Horse Theater and blogs for The Clam Room.  He currently lives in New Orleans, Louisiana where he teaches kindergarten, reads about evolutionary biology and laments the effective absence of autumn.

Meg Gatza holds a BA in statistical thermodynamics (physics) and religious pluralism (religion) and an MA in Hinduism and Feminism. She plays ultimate frisbee and drinks scotch and good beer in Somerville, MA. She teaches herself Bengali and Hindi in her spare time.

Andrea Greco was raised Catholic in New Jersey, attended high school in the Bible Belt, and graduated from the secular Jewish paradise that is Bard College. Her spiritual influences range from Mary Daly, Dostoevsky, and Alan Watts to Ernest Kurtz.  She lives in Queens with her partner Ed and their wily Sphynx cat.

Joanna Gurin is a New York based playwright and activist. She holds a dual degree in Theatre and Human Rights from Bard College. A long-time fan of The Busy Signal, Joanna is excited to call herself a contributor. She also likes film noir and Shirley Temples.

Thomas H. Hintze is a writer and cyclist living in Brooklyn, NY.  He has cycled from Baltimore to San Francisco twice with the 4K for Cancer, directing a 63-day coast-to-coast odyssey in the summer of 2009, and now serving on the Board of Directors.  Currently a baker, sometimes a waiter, he became interested in sustainable foodwhile working at Blue Hill at Stone Barnes, dancing through the dining room in the most fine attire.  He writes for the Brooklyn Examiner about sustainable food, and in his spare time hauls his rod and reel to the fabled shores of the East River in search of the beastliest catch.

Matthew Hunte is a writer currently residing in Saint Lucia.

Celia Jailer is a student in Berkeley, CA.

Colin Lissandrello is a freelance editor and writer. He operates, and can be reached at

Jacqueline Moss holds a B.A. in American Studies from Bard College and is an avid reader of thick (and occasionally dull) history books and Supreme Court opinions. Jacqueline will be attending the University of Maine School of Law in the fall, and spare time is spent knitting, cooking, and enjoying the scene in Portland Maine.

After graduating from Bard College in 2008 with a degree in Human Rights and Russian Studies, Genya Shimkin moved to Baltimore, Maryland.  She currently works for Baltimore HealthCare Access, serving the city’s uninsured and Medicaid enrollees.  In addition to her work in public health, Genya serves on the Board of Directors of Stonewall Democrats of Central Maryland.

Randa Tawil is an actor/writer/teacher currently residing in Washington DC. She attended Wesleyan University, where she studied Theater and American Studies, and focused her senior thesis on a reexamination of Arab American racial formation. She is especially interested in the US’ relationship with the Ottoman Empire before World War I, and also loves improv comedy. like, alot.



Elias Primoff is a Brooklyn-based writer and editor. He has worked for the Paris Review and Conjunctions and currently edits in the publishing department of a political nonprofit organization. He blogs about video games and other disposable culture at



Alan Knox’s study of linguistics at UC Santa Cruz culminated in a psycholinguistic syntax experiment about predicate retrieval cues and interference.  He now resides in Brooklyn, and works in various capacities in assorted boroughs.  He looks forward to the return of ultimate frisbee season and his own eventual return to studenthood.
Shapel Mallard is a native of Brooklyn who remembers Bed-Stuy before it was Stuyvesant Heights. A lover of  Jazz, Hip-Hop and philosophic pursuits, Shapel is a contributor  for, writing reviews for artists off the radar, as well as a satirical column Hip-Hop Prognosticator, poking fun at the current state of hip-hop culture. His favorite color is blue, and thinks John Coltrane might have been better at the whole life thing than just about everybody. Just about.


Katy Kelleher graduated from Bard College in 2009, where she majored in Literature and the fine art of bullshitting. Katy is employed as a blogger at, where she writes about lady-issues, and a blogger/editorial assistant at, where she deals with literary-issues. She currently resides in Cambridge, Massachusetts.


Steve Miranda is the director of Puget Sound Community School, an independent school for students in grades 6-12 located in Seattle’s International District. Steve is working the school’s Board of Trustees to position PSCS as a model for a new kind of school, leading an education movement away from standardization and towards a focus on qualities like creativity, adaptability, passion, responsibility, and integrity. He posts a daily blog entry at