Thursday, November 20, 2008

Pffffft! just like that

PC Magazine will soon no longer enjoy a physical embodiment and will exist solely as an on-line presence. I remember the days when it was fat and sassy. I don't know how many issues there were a year, but I think that it appeared at least every two weeks. Those few of us with an interest would kick in to pay for a shared issue. We'd pore over every page and discuss it all. I feel sad about the change, but I could see it coming on the heels of the recent announcement that the publication would send out only 12 issues a year. I think that it's much more laborious (and of course not nearly so portable) to absorb information from on-line sources. Books and magazines are still the best portable entertainment and information devices. Should I commission a t-shirt that says "fuddy-duddy and proud"?

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


In the desperate ads delivered with the local daily, deep discounts are already offered for nearly all items that can in any way be construed as holiday-related. When used to describe tree ornaments, one must suppose that "shatterproof" means "not glass" or "plastic" (or "virgin resin," the current euphemism for plastic).

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Using the way-back machine on the cv

Do people even know what this means? Eric Holder lists a New York State Regents Scholarship on his individual page at Covington & Burling. In monetary terms, I don't think that a Regents scholarship is worth much now, but there was a time that such a scholarship was like a big pot of gold, so long as the college attended was within the state.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Nature's bounty

We can't go anywhere in the pleasure grounds these days without disturbing a mockingbird at the lantana berries or a mourning dove at the wild sunflower seeds or a squirrel busy with pecans.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Signs of the season

The pecan leaves are starting to fall in earnest. Three stalks with fat buds have shot up overnight, from sunset to sunrise, on one of the clumps of paperwhite narcissus bulbs dumped out of the pot years ago after being forced to bloom indoors. The air is heavy with the scent of loquat blossoms and honeybees swarm them.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Not beer alone

When we think of Shiner, Texas, we think of the Spoetzl Brewery. I looked closely at a wire basket and, noticing where it was made, learned for the first time about the Kaspar Wire Works, also a long-time (since 1898) employer in Shiner. I love it that the Kaspar site, under "llinks," goes to the Shiner, Moulton, Yoakum, Hallettsville, and Gonzalez chambers of commerce.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

On the eleventh day of the eleventh month

This is one of the days when all those searches on "yellow butterflies" or that phrase and "tomb of the unknown" bring scores of people to this blog, people who remember that story on this day of remembrance. The other day when this search is common is Decoration Day (Memorial Day).

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Higher and higher

I'd like to see something about the music (and subsequent fresh sound art) creating atmosphere for Obama events and in the wake of the election. There was no music to be heard on the television airing of McCain's concession speech, but, before Obama took the stage in Grant Park, I thought I could hear faintly in the background what sounded like a live performance of (Your Love Keeps Lifting Me) Higher and Higher. Could it have been Aretha? I haven't heard A Change is Gonna Come so much since I used to hear it and every other Sam Cooke recording played nearly every day after hours at work years ago.

Monday, November 03, 2008

Culprits identified

The chief pumpkin predators have been spotted in broad daylight. They are squirrels! Pumpkins are evidently such a delicacy that one squirrel dining on it attempts to fend off all others until he is sated.