Thursday, June 30, 2005

There goes the neighborhoods

On the positive side of the ledger are the reputedly scummy surroundings of my new workplace. I've been there two days now, and it's great to be in the real world: people pedestrianing, orange vests leaning on shovels, the aromas of Thai and Vietnamese and Indian cooking mingling (and all three places small enough that the lines spill out onto the sidewalk). Inside the office is beautiful, but my work is still such a tossed salad of "behind" and "behinder" that I can't really enjoy it yet. Outside, though, it's a week of shirtsleeve weather (rare in San Francisco).

On the negative side, the wonderful neighbors in our townhome quad are slowly evaporating. When we moved in four years ago, it was in part because of the many children nearby. But of the seven families we've known the best, by the end of this summer five will have moved away. A couple of new families have moved in, but there are definitely fewer kids and a higher proportion of Spanish speakers. In short, it's getting harder to shoo my children outside because it's less and less likely they'll find anyone to play with.

Sally Ann and PJ are attending their first-ever day camp this week, and it's wearing them out. But for the rest of the summer I think we're going to have to arrange visits to and from friends. For a couple of years we had the kind of neighborhood I grew up in, where the kids made their own fun and organized themselves pretty much unsupervised; it's a little sad to think that we have to enter the more modern world of scheduling their play.

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

My All-Star ballot

National League: 1B Lee CHC (wow—we found someone who can make Albert Pujols look weak!), 2B L. Castillo FLA, SS Barmes COL, 3B A. Ramirez CHC, C LoDuca FLA; OF Abreu PHI, Cabrera FLA, Lofton PHI

American League: 1B Texeira TEX, 2B B. Roberts BAL, SS Tejada BAL. 3B A. Rodriguez NYY, C Varitek BOS, DH Ortiz BOS; OF V. Guerrero ANA, Posednik CWS (OK, so I'm a sucker for 36 SB...), Sheffield NYY

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Business travelling

I haven't travelled on business in a long while... On a cross-country plane ride Monday, I sat next to a man who was plainly uncomfortable unless he was talking. Also, he believes that people from California will always lose in Arizona courts; he thinks that Orange County is terrible now that it's full of Mexicans; and as soon as he found out I'm in the publishing business, he immediately related a story about a friend of his getting ripped off by a publisher.

So I made him as uncomfortable as I could, in the circumstances.

Being in Indianapolis has been much more positive. I've met several fellow Wiley-ites and seen far too many amazing new systems I'll be using. And tonight we're on our way to an Indianapolis Indians baseball game (if you're there, I'll be the one wearing a Rochester Red Wings t-shirt). So I'd rather be swimming with my kids and sleeping with my wife, but the trip is trying its hardest not to be a drag anyway.

Friday, June 17, 2005

Happy birthday, Aung San Suu Kyi

It's Saturday already in Myanmar; do you know where your Nobel Peace Prize winner is?

Thursday, June 16, 2005


I don't waste my time justifying why I live in Kuhliforneeuh; it's paradise, and I won't convince anyone who doesn't think so. But for one tidbit of the reason: what she said. PJ made $4.50 selling cherries from our front step later that day.

Monday, June 13, 2005

A healthy society demands that you inform

Wow. Somebody thought that this would make a great poster for the Baltimore-Washington commuter train. Were they ever wrong.

Thursday, June 09, 2005

I'm glum

Nobody has tagged me with the book meme. Sob.

(On the other hand, please nobody bother tagging me with the music meme.)

Wednesday, June 08, 2005


You might notice that I've added Think Progress to my blogroll. At this point, I only have time to read a handfull of sites each day, and the blogroll really does represent my priority list when time is short. (Although if Ig doesn't resume posting soon, I'll have to stop checking in on Benzene.)

TP does a fantastic job of cutting through the bullshit to the heart of the matter. Better still, they do something far too few blogs do: they use the hyper-ness of the Web to its fullest extent. TP entries don't just have one link, three grafs of quote, and a sentence of "Indeed."-level comment; they usually have multiple links, often holding up contrasting or contradicting quotes next to each other, and make cogent points of their own. In fact, a TP entry often makes a point about public policy and a point about the journalisming around that policy, as demonstrated by today's "Two Plans, One Ridiculous Headline". (And their graphic categorization scheme is cool, too.)

Monday, June 06, 2005


The blog has low priority just now; both my professional work and my community work are at the peak of activity. I'll drop in from time to time, but no promises at least until the end of June.

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Time's running out

At this point in the year, most baby peregrine falcons are walking around growing feathers. You probably have less than a month to see them before they start flying out of camera range. There are a lot of nest cams (and not just for falcons), but the two I watch are in Rochester, New York, and San Francisco.

A note for journalists

When reporting on this week's identification of the Watergate leaker "Deep Throat", stop quoting a man who was convicted of perjury. Chuck Colson is not entitled to pronounce on the ethics of whistleblowing, ever. Yes, Charles Osgood, this means you.

Theocracy on the march

A Kentucky judge is giving lighter sentences to people who attend church.

(Bonus exercise of two first-amendment rights: It's not worth listening to the opinion of anyone who holds both views that Muslim fundamentalists are evil and Christian fundamentalists are good.)