Sam Anderson's essays and book reviews have appeared in the Philadelphia Inquirer, the New OrleansTimes-Picayune, and Exquisite Corpse. He a former book critic at New York Magazine, and is currently the critic at large for The New York Times Magazine.
On the laid-back art of tubing: "The tube lends you its magical buoyancy and the current (if that’s the word for an ambiguous, two-miles-per-hour general trend) sweeps you away. It’s hard to overemphasize the passivity of tubing. It is sloth ingeniously disguised as adventure."
"The alligator's glory days are over. This can happen after two hundred million years. For a long time it seemed like the party would never end. The ancient gator was king of the swamp, and the entire world was swampland. Under the guise of a whole smorgasbord of vicious and prominentlyfanged relatives (including the ten-ton, bus-length SuperCroc), the alligator not only shared the steamy, leafy old world with dinosaurs, he ate them."