An appetizer.

Well, I got nuthin’ for you folks today, mainly because I gotta get somethin’ for somebody else. But we have tasty bloggage. Mull. Discuss. And check back later, when my brain will be a little more sprightly, eh?

As an occasional viewer of “Animal Cops: Detroit” I know my new hometown is to dogfighting what it is to, well, the NBA, MLB, NHL and (to a far lesser extent) NFL — i.e., a contender. Some bastard’s always getting busted with all manner of grisly training devices in his dank basement. If it’s any consolation, I can hardly see how they’re disposing of the losing pit bulls in the manner Vick was accused of, when it’s plain they’re simply released into city neighborhoods to bring their special kind of magic to the urban prairie.

This WashPost piece takes a look at the subculture of “dog men,” a widespread, underground network of fighting operations that evidently included Vick’s Bad Newz Kennels. (Why not “Kennelz?” I wonder.) Interesting.

In my time as a sports copy editor, I became familiar with many Toy Department contenders for the Academy of the Overrated, but none so deserving as Stephen Smith, aka the How-EV-uh Guy. (That was his ESPN catch phrase.) Well, someone agrees with me; he’s being stripped of his Philadelphia Inquirer column. Mitch Albom feels a great disturbance in the Force, or maybe it’s just his testicles snuggling up closer to his body cavity.

And finally, by popular demand…

The Stouder Family portrait, Simpsonized! (That’s Brian and Pam, and their kids, L-R, Shelby, Chloe and Grant.) Have a swell day.


Posted at 9:16 am in Current events, Media |

11 responses to “An appetizer.”

  1. brian stouder said on August 22, 2007 at 9:27 am

    …and let me hasten to add that Pam did all the work making that composite!

    The folks here at work immediately noted that she has her arms folded, just as she might if I had just said or done something particularly stupid…

    Shelby was so amused by the picture, that she took two copies to school; we’re braced for her reaction to her friends’ reaction to her (note that her braces are featured)

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  2. Danny said on August 22, 2007 at 9:33 am

    Hmmm. I have caught Stephen A. Smith a few times in interviews with Jim Rome (on Rome’s radio and TV programs). He always seemed to bring his A-game for those nationally syndicated gigs.

    The truth is, we probably wouldn’t be talking about all of this belt tightening in the news industry if we could figure out a correctly priced and secure method of micro-payments for online content.

    You want to read and article in WaPo? That’ll be 1/2 a cent. Or something like that. Wanna download this month’s Time magazine to you Blackberry? That’ll be fiddy cent.

    Maybe aggregated and billed per month by your ISP or something. I dunno. One would just have to watch out and budget for big ticket online reading items like NN.C. And since I know some of our commentary adds value, we could share in the largess of our benevolent Lady, Queen Nancy.

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  3. nancy said on August 22, 2007 at 9:38 am

    Forget it, dude. It’s every scribe for herself out here in the wild west. Look out, an elbow!

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  4. Danny said on August 22, 2007 at 9:51 am

    Did I say “benevolent?” Ooopsie.

    Change that to “malevolent.”

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  5. MarkH said on August 22, 2007 at 11:21 am

    Based on my own experience working with the Simpsonizer, it takes some work to get it right (I haven’t got any of mine close, yet), so hats off to Pam (and Nancy) for their accurate results.

    But, Brian, really, based on the one Flickr photo I’ve seen, do you have THAT much hair? Just an observation from one hair-challenged guy to another…

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  6. nancy said on August 22, 2007 at 11:22 am

    Actually, Danny, you bring up a good point. I’d happily pay for content online, at least the stuff that costs money to produce — real reporting, basically. (Although I’d also pay for well-crafted opinionizing, and always for good writing.) Of course, that would open a whole new can of worms, as the “information wants to be free” constituency tries to ratfuck the system, with cutting/pasting copy to free sites, etc. However, it’s something I’d be willing to try.

    For the time being, NN.C remains blissfully free. Our motto: You get what you pay for.

    As for Smith, his affliction is common and widespread, particularly in sports: Writer gets column. Column gets writer entree to higher-profile TV work; after all, he’s not just an asshole with an opinion, he’s a columnist. Higher-profile work is more fun, less work, and better-paying. Columnist is not only a writer, but now a TV personality, which ups his value with his original employer. But, alas, there are but 24 hours in a day, and a man can only stretch himself so thin. Something’s gotta give. TV appearances cannot be phoned in, but columns can. And the downward spiral begins.

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  7. brian stouder said on August 22, 2007 at 11:29 am

    do you have THAT much hair?

    depends what angle you’re looking from. The 5 o’clock shadow was what got me laughing!

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  8. Jolene said on August 22, 2007 at 3:17 pm

    I like the micro-payments idea too. I’m embarrased to say in front of all you journos that I stopped subscribing to the Post because I got tired of the huge piles of paper, much of which I never read (e.g., car pages, sports pages).

    I am, though, an avid reader of, and I’d be happy for online coenrnt;. I’m a news and politics junkie, and the Post has many fine writers, and lots of coverage of politics. Also, I have not yet lapsed into the “hate the MSM” school of thought that both left- and right-wing blogs specialize in. I may be naive, but i actually believe most reporters are doing their best to be accurate and as comprehensive as is warranted by the story.

    The Post has been very creative about how it’s used the Web to draw in readers (e.g., web chats, blogs, online groups, much video contenct), and they have succeeded. Unfortunately, i can’t find the figures right showing how big their online audience is, but it’s much bigger than the dead tree version.

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  9. nancy said on August 22, 2007 at 3:26 pm

    Since signing on with GoogleAds, and seeing how the system works, this is how I’m making “micropayments:”

    When I read something I like on a site, I click on one of the ads, stay a decent interval (10 seconds or so) and sometimes click through to the next layer of the ad, then politely exit. I believe this will earn the host a few cents, maybe a dime. Yes, the system is flawed; Google frequently throws up stupid ads for the content. (Today I believe I’m linked via ad to several Scarface/Al Pacino fan sites, when the comments were hardly fan stuff.) But I buy the New York Times ink-on-paper, and my eyes skate across lots of ads for $400,000 diamond rings I’m not in the market for. It’s what I can do.

    Note that I’m not telling anyone to do that here. It would be a violation of my service agreement. [Ha ha, I am nudging yooooo!]

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  10. LA mary said on August 22, 2007 at 4:42 pm

    My in house security blocks your ads here at the office, so I’m no use to you monetarily. Can’t watch videos, use some links, see ads. Sigh. Big Sister is watching (this is a Catholic hospital).

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  11. harry near indy said on August 23, 2007 at 5:25 am

    if there is divine justice, then tony kornheiser will never be on tv or heard on the radio again. he’s obnoxious and arrogant, and i find him as repulsive as a sports pundit as i do chris matthews as a news pundit.

    and he has a combover, and i despise men with combovers.

    (note to nance and all hoosiers — mitch daniels — and i’ll write no more about him.)

    with that said, i think i’ll try the simpsonizer. i used a bad picture the first time; it made me look like a porcupine with jaundice.

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