Welcome To...Wonderside Productions!

"W O N D E R S I D E . . ."

material presented with "the Play of the Mind..." Whether ideas about better thinking itself ... or stories-&-poetry ... or "techniques" (cooking-recipes, etc.) ... or humor-&-satire ... or visual artistry & even cartoons .... it's Better Thinking Thru Better Thinking [w/ more Enjoyment too]....


--[I] "Formal, Mild, Safe" Version: We are a clearinghouse for Interesting Information. On certain topics: see below

[Boy, that really sounds "interesting"... or, borrrring...]
[...Okay Okay so wait a minute, let's try that again:

--[II] "Actual, Wilder, Truer Version:" But whatever the subject, our approach is two-fold: "More Useful, plus also more Enjoyablebecause Better-done—because simply Thought-Through better, via using specific thinking tools..."

....[Well, that sounds a little better....] [Why Thank You So Much...]

That is:

More Practicalè

and more Pleasure!

More Informativeè

and more Intriguing!

More Skilledè

and more Satisfying!

More Expertè

and more Enjoyable!

More Functionalè

and more Fun!

[...can this be right??]

...and, Why Not?

---Simple "information"? It's everywhere. But too often it's insufficient. Plus "boring:...

---How about "Information II," the facts enhanced by good thinking? More efficient...

(...oh, and also more enjoyable—an analogy here—we think of "thinking," as being like a Sport-Game-Play, an Athletic Contest. The thinker-athlete, takes to the field to use skills and sweat to surmount obstacles and conquer the "foe" of Ignorance / Confusion. And the reader-audience in the bleachers, cheers deft moves, boos foulouts..)

...AND WHAT ABOUT YOU? "Internet Is Interactive"! So, respond already! The site's Guest Book is still under construction. [This site went up in mid-November 2001] So for comments on the subjects, for now use:

--(1) our e-mail address [briankevinbeck@netscape.net] ... or,

--(2) our snail-mail address. [Wonderside, P.O. Box 1, Whitewater, WI 53190 U.S.A.]

Approve; critique; offer additions; etc.!


current, working

Table of Contents

...in two versions, below:


[I. ] The Brief Over-View Glimpse:

1. Mind-Play. About "better thinking," but everyone's enjoying it now, too.

2. Recipes with "Integrity" Yes, more recipes, but with a stated standard of "integrity" to them at last. Share your own "forever-favorite" dishes with us!

3. Good Poetry Gallery. Anthology of other peoples' poems, but which we feel are artistically-superior—at last and for once in this age of pale poems, diluted diction, vanilla verse!

4. "Found Poetry" F.P. is "Writing which wasn't originally intended as poetry, but which can be seen as such." Our own collection, for "light dessert." Submit your own findings!

5. Micro-Stories. Can you capture-and-convey the vivid essence of peoples' complex life-experiences, onto just one page? Yes, if you use the "painting-by-anecdotes" approach. Beats the lengthy tedious "memoir" by a kilometer. Share your own Pocket Portraits, Concise Confessions!

6. "Operation Art-UP NOW!" This project's goal: to show the overlooked value of putting up good visual art in public spaces to embellish the environment, expedite art-appreciation too. Sounds fuddy-duddy. Actually is exuberant, and why aren't visual-art educators already doing much more of this anyhow?????

7. The Poison-Pen Personnel-Portrait Portfolio. "Satirical sketches of academic life"—need more be said? [We Apologize Already. We're probably too critical and nasty, upholding our high Standards of Criteria for behavior and all that. Soo Sorrry.....]

8. But So Did Her Brother! Our own book of poetry and prose on issues of sexual orientation, gender-identity, and more—but designed to be artistic achievement, not social soapboxing or personal emoting.

9. The Potato Kronikles. If we absolutely can't draw any human figure (and we can't), then how can we still claim we can draw cartoons? Oh yes indeed we do, and for two purposes too. "Chester Potatohead" and his potato-pals (a top-tuber crew of spud-buds) indeed entertain us. Also they show how they employ whimsy to "keep on dancing through the tough stuff anyhow"...

10. The Essai File. Short forays on varied subjects.


[ II. ] ...and, The More-Complete Description:

(1) Mind-Play.

Are you interested in better thinking? On any subject? Teaching and learning it better? For practical profit—but oh yes, also for frank enjoyment?

--This book is offered as "better, anyhow valuable," because it's a competent introduction, overview, orientation to the crucial big issues in thinking which too many other materials on "thinking" (in the schools and elsewhere) fall short of elucidating. A "Resource Access-Center" for all to get guidance in exploring thinking, but also retain their own autonomy in self-constructing their own thinking systems.

[See? "Quite Focussed, but also Flexible; quite Accurate, but also Adaptable-Adjustable"—"balancing contraries," already a Standard or Criterion for Good Thinking itself!]


(2) Cooking: Recipes with "Integrity"

Are you interested in good recipes—but have seen too many duds, want to know why we claim these are good, the rationale behind the recipes?

--We present our two dozen all-time favorites from decades of cooking, but also give you our rationale for selecting them. Food for thought, as well as a way of deciding whether these recipes are for you or not.

[See? Here we "balance Relativity, and Rationality." We say: yes, each to their own opinion, but also here's our criteria for good recipes whether you agree or not, just so you know how we think." Yes, yet another Criterion for good thinking on any topic, "even" gastronomy!] We encourage your submissions too!


(3) Good Poetry Gallery: Aesthetic-Artistic Achievement, not merely Social-Political Statement, or Simply-Personal Sound-Off.

Are you one of the few who likes poems with artistic craft, skill, polish—along with the genuine emotional power? And who do not find enough artistry in so many "poems" today?

--This is an anthology to showcase and support, highly-selected examples of what we at WONDERSIDE feel is more "real poetry" than so many poems today. Too much verse today seems to be only diluted diction, a paragraph chopped up into arbitrary lines (alas for enjambment!), with figurative language lacking: no crisp images, no apt analogies, no.....but we're already lecturing. You know what you like in true poetry. Or do you even know fully what true poetry can be? Sample our anthology! Oh, and of course, offer feedback, or overlooked examples, yourself....

[ See? Here too the issue of "what is good verbal art?" Beyond just Relativism, or "who's-to-say," but short of Authoritarianism, or "This Is The Way"... ]

Warning, and Reassurance... "Onions" here: this collection currently contains only "gay male" poetry. No, not grossly-pornographic—but even so, this subject would at first surely seem to limit its interest for many, even most, readers; true...

However, "Orchids" here: these poems work so well as poetry, as effective literary craft, that "all of us" can relate well-enough to them. A poet's skill can transcend any narrow-interest subject and make it more relevant, to more people generally, than otherwise would happen...

And in two ways. (1) Though the subject is specialized, its theme might talk to all, universally. And also (2) the poetic skill will be enjoyable for its own sake, even if you personally aren't into the "lifestyle" (or rather, the perspective) of the poems. (A poem too is a sport-game-play or contest: the poet attempts high acrobatics, or should, and succeeds and soars—we hope—or too often today, tumbles, or never even gets off the ground of plodding prose pronouncements....)


Biographical Info About The WONDERSIDE Staff Personnel:

(1) The Director. Brian Kevin Beck, Ph.D.

è Teacher: taught English (and writing and thinking!) at Univ. of Wis.-Whitewater, 1966-1994

è Writer: published:
----130 articles on "recreational sailboating, nature, travel" in a dozen magazines
[Sail, Cruising World, Lakeland Boating, others ]
----35 articles on sexual-orientation and gender-role-identity issues, in minority press
----50 articles on "teaching writing: language-arts pedagogy" in a dozen journals nationwide
[College English, CCCC, English Journal, Arizona English Bulletin, etc.]
-----6 poems [Journal of General Education, Poet Lore, Empathy, others ]

è Visual Artist:
----Photographer: 175 illustrations with the nautical-maritime articles. Six magazine covers.
----Copier-Artist: did copier-art displays, exhibitions [Janesville Public Library, spr. 1993 ]
----Art-Educator: founder of "Operation Art-UP Now!" (see #6 above).
----Cartoonist: (see # 9 above, the "Potato Kronikles").

(2) The Office Committee. Fern, Chester, Dexter, Floyd, Stanton, Little Appledore.

TO Contact Us:

e-mail: [ briankevinbeck@netscape.net ]
s-mail: c/o WONDERSIDE, P.O. Box 1, Whitewater, WI 53190 U.S.A.