Auguring in.

It’s hard to stop thinking about the suicidal German pilot, isn’t it? The details keep sticking with me, especially the part about his breathing:

In the final moments, the sounds of terrified passengers filled the plane even as Lubitz — audibly breathing as a bleeping alarm warned of imminent collision — kept quiet through the end.

Heaven help us from a man who can breathe calmly through the act of taking 150 lives. It will be interesting to see how this one unfolds:

But as officials carted out boxes of belongings, including a laptop, from his family’s home in a middle-class neighborhood of this southwestern German town, questions centered on several months in 2009 when Lubitz took a leave from his pilot training.

Here’s hoping this isn’t a here-we-go-again deal. I can’t stand the stupid, as the kids say.

A busy couple of days, but a long weekend ahead — Kate is off on a solo spring mini-break, and we are off to Toronto, just for the hell of it. The house- and dog-sitter arrives in the morning, and I cleaned two bathrooms today. Vacations, even mini-vacations (this is only a weekend), are hard, until they’re not.

So, before we head off for the great white north, a few pieces of bloggage:

A sea change in Kentucky’s approach to heroin addiction. Via the HuffPost, which I don’t generally trust, but here goes:

On Tuesday night, Kentucky lawmakers passed wide-ranging legislation to combat the state’s heroin epidemic. The bipartisan measure represents a significant policy shift away from more punitive measures toward a focus on treating addicts, not jailing them.

The state will now allow local health departments to set up needle exchanges and increase the number of people who can carry naloxone, the drug that paramedics use to save a person suffering an opioid overdose. Addicts who survive an overdose will no longer be charged with a crime after being revived. Instead, they will be connected to treatment services and community mental health workers.

Speaking of drugs, and emergency measures, Indiana’s in it, too:

Gov. Mike Pence Thursday declared the HIV epidemic in southeastern Indiana a public health emergency and gave local authorities the OK to begin a short-term needle-exchange program to help fight an outbreak that now includes 79 cases all linked to intravenous drug use.

But Pence made it clear that allowing for a temporary needle exchange program does not reverse his long-held opposition to needle exchange programs.

Of course it doesn’t. He’s opposed to them, except when they work.

Fans of “The Wire,” and of the president — which probably covers everyone here — will want to watch this delightful conversation between Barry and David Simon, talking criminal justice and the war on drugs. Two smart people, jawin’. You’ll like.

A good piece by my colleague Ron on the obstacles in front of poorer high-school kids when they start to look for college options:

Michigan’s low-income high school graduates, as well as many of the state’s rural grads, enroll in college at lower levels than their wealthier, suburban peers. Those who do enroll are less likely to attend a four-year school, and more likely to drop out before earning a degree.

Some of that gap is because of differences in academic achievement that correlates stubbornly to family income. But there is another, less visible cause, one that involves physics tutors and strategically groomed extracurricular activities.

This is the after-school gap – an admissions-driven arms race that widens the already-broad college access gap between low-income students and their wealthier peers.

With that, I’m off to pack my suitcase. Good weekend, all. Eh?

Posted at 11:02 pm in Current events | 111 Comments

Beep torture.

Being a terrier, Wendy is a little high-strung, although not overly so. But today she came upstairs where I was working, jumped up next to me and cuddled up, trembling like a leaf. It took me a while, but I figured it out: There was a smoke alarm chirping with a dying battery, down in the basement. Spriggy was also high-strung, but brave as a mongoose, and chirping smoke alarms had the same effect. One day I came home and found him in an absolute lather — trotting from one end of the house to the other, panting, frantic. All over a little beeping.

And that? Was pretty much the extent of the news developments at this end today. That, and the usual household annoyances, plus 7,000 emails.

God, I can’t wait for warm weather. Thirty-seven degrees today was the best it got. Worst cabin fever I’ve had since…last year.

So a quick stop by the bloggage, and I’m headed to bed.

This site has been around for a while, but I’m just finding it: The Reductress, the Onion of women’s magazines. Case in point: Local woman wins stress-eating contest:

The third annual Häagen Dazs-Frito Lay Stress-Eating Contest was held this weekend at Morgantown County Fair in Morgantown, West Virginia. Eight competitors from the area took their places on the stage with one goal in mind: to stress-eat heaping piles of food until their feelings went away. But only one woman would come out on top: head server at Rocky’s Water Hole and recent, Mica Sullivan.

“I fucking deserve better, you know?” said Sullivan, in a rambling Facebook status posted at 3:14 this morning as she scraped the bottom of a bag of chips. “He’s trash.”

It appears Ben Carson is crazier — or just more offensive, in every way — than we thought. Here’s Carson and Armstrong Williams watching the SOTU:

“He looks good,” Williams said. “He looks clean. Shirt’s white. The tie. He looks elegant.”

“Like most psychopaths,” Carson grumbled. “That’s why they’re successful. That’s the way they look. They all look great.”

For those unfamiliar with the mood of America’s far right, casually branding the president a psychopath is exactly the sort of talk that strikes a chord—and just the thing that has made Carson a sensation in the GOP. Today the former pediatric neurosurgeon—who’s never run for elected office—is suddenly besting candidates like Jeb, Marco, and Rand in some 2016 polls and preparing to announce his campaign for the White House. As for the current resident, well, Carson is sometimes encouraged to cut him just a little slack before he hands over the keys.

Psychopath. Good one. Keep it up, guys. This is a winning strategy if there ever was one.

Facebook as the great publisher of the future. Oh, joy.

Killer Wednesday ahead. Expect…not much posting until Thursday.

Posted at 12:24 am in Current events, Same ol' same ol' | 127 Comments

The b.j. queen.

I see Monica Lewinsky has started her big comeback tour. As Jeff the mild-mannered likes to say, grace and peace to her. You can’t say this poor woman ever tried to cash in on her bad luck, and in fact has really suffered for it. Imagine being her, carrying that name and face around for the last 18 years. Imagine going on a date. (Imagine being the guy who dates her.) Imagine just walking down the street, with her famous, fabulous mane of hair. And imagine introducing yourself: Hi, I’m Monica. Better that she be named Kate or Heather or any other, more common young-woman name. Anyone who lived through Lewinsky 1.0 would know her instantly.

I just can’t imagine. All for a little fling with a married man who flung with so, so many. The wheel spins around and you, yes you are the one who gets to pay. And pay and pay and pay.

Funny that she’s apparently chosen cyberbullying as her issue, when her ordeal happened largely before cyber was a thing — her shaming was more old-school. But she can certainly speak with authority about what it’s like to see your privacy go up in smoke, justlikethat. I’m glad the NYT story didn’t skimp on the fact this was a story in which both left and right disgraced themselves:

Ms. Lewinsky was quickly cast by the media as a “little tart,” as The Wall Street Journal put it. The New York Post nicknamed her the “Portly Pepperpot.” She was described by Maureen Dowd in The New York Times as “ditsy” and “predatory.”

And other women — self-proclaimed feminists — piled on. “My dental hygienist pointed out she had third-stage gum disease,” said Erica Jong. Betty Friedan dismissed her as “some little twerp.”

“It’s a sexual shaming that is far more directed at women than at men,” Gloria Steinem wrote me in an email, noting that in Ms. Lewinsky’s case, she was also targeted by the “ultraright wing.” “I’m grateful to [her],” Ms. Steinem said, “for having the courage to return to the public eye.”

Yep. She was collateral damage in the right’s effort to destroy Bill Clinton, and in their reflexive defense of him, the left lined up to kick her, too. Besides, isn’t she what every married woman fears? The office girl with the glossy hair and the big boobs, lingering by the copier to bat her eyes at your husband? We don’t blame him, we blame her. I know I did, and I hadn’t been married five years yet. I took my turn putting her through the wringer; they’d have pulled my columnist card otherwise.

I still don’t think young single women should go putting the make on older married men, but I’m older myself now, and I no longer see her as the villain. I recall my friend Lance Mannion fuming, “I can forgive him the sex, but not the stupidity. It’s not like Washington isn’t full of beautiful, promiscuous, discreet thirtysomething adulteresses; he could have had anyone he wanted. But he picks an intern.” Yep, exactly. For a man so practiced in the art of extramarital stepping out, he really, really should have known better.

And while Monica bore the brunt of all of this, the whole country was put through the wringer. The impeachment was a nightmare of comic misery; I remember sitting in the Meijer parking lot, my chin on my chest, listening to …who was it? Larry Flynt? Talking about the dirt he had on Bob Barr? I think so, but it could have been any number of other freeze-frame moments from that very weird interlude that gave us Linda Tripp, Linda Tripp’s plastic surgery, Lucianne Goldberg and her spawn, a million pearl-clutching mommies moaning about having to explain oral sex to middle schoolers, Ken Starr and his ewwww report, blue Gap dresses and Maureen Dowd’s Pulitzer and all the rest of it. I loved the ’90s as much as anyone, but not that part of it.

So, some bloggage:

Congratulations, white guys! You win the race again! In the age of exquisite sensitivity to diversity, how the hell does this happen?

Dahlia Lithwick looks at the demented decision to try 12-year-olds as adults. One our own juvie-justice guy, whose name has already been dropped once, might like to read.

I haven’t finished this Michael Kruse piece on Jeb Bush and his problems on the GOP right, but I will. The first third looks pretty good.

So! Let’s have us a week, why don’t we? Hope yours is great.

Posted at 12:25 am in Current events | 41 Comments

Low-rent lunch.

Today at work we had a lunch meeting with some important people, and we ordered in subs from a well-known national chain that, I guess I should say, is not Subway. My bun was stale and the cookie was cold, which made it tough and not particularly good. Of course, even with these shortcomings, I pretty much ate it all, because that’s the way I was raised. Leave edible food on your plate? Unless you’re gagging or maggots are crawling on it, you clean your plate, girlie.

Hard to break those habits, isn’t it? But we filled out a very sternly worded feedback form on the website.

Are French children taught to clean their plate because of the starving ones in China? Good question. Answer: Probably not.

The food was bad, the meeting was better, the day was a parade of sniffles, but! Fewer sniffles than yesterday. The corner may have been turned, and I feel better, although my voice is worse. So what, I don’t work in radio. But let’s skip to the bloggage.

Eric Zorn looks at the Michael Brown/Ferguson situation and observes the truth is complicated:

Yes, Brown never even said nor pantomimed “hands up, don’t shoot.” But Wilson’s exoneration is not tantamount to an exoneration of American law enforcement in how it interacts with minority communities.

Yes, the explosion of destructive rage in Ferguson was rooted in a lie, a lie that advocates should disown, as Capehart did. But that lie is rooted in a broader truth.

A lie can reveal a truth — such an ironic message, and it’s the one many are missing about Ferguson. Brown may not have done what we’d like him to have done, but the incident didn’t touch off weeks and months of protests over nothing, which is what the DoJ report revealed.

I’m beginning to think of “Empire” as the guy you fall madly in love with for three days and then wake up, climb out of bed and say, “What was I thinking?” Tom and Lorenzo at least partially agree. Great fun, but the season is over, and you just know they’re gonna fuck it all up next year.

At least John McCain tried gentle correction. Rick Santorum just stands there. What a profile in courage.

Have a great weekend, all. I’m-a try to get better.

Posted at 12:29 am in Current events, Same ol' same ol', Television | 67 Comments

Blinded by the light.

I lived in Indiana for 20 years, a state that didn’t observe daylight saving time, and ached for it. Part of it was the simple embarrassment of living in a backwater, one of two states in the union that didn’t observe it; Indiana was fond of dumbshit policies like that, like keeping its welfare system not at the state or even county level, but townships. People in Indiana, as charming and down-to-earth as they are, could also be stubborn in truly unique ways.

The problem, we were told twice a year, was that the state lies at the western edge of the eastern time zone, and the line kept getting fiddled with. At one time it was in the Central zone, then the line ran through Indianapolis, bisecting the state. Now it’s the western border, except for carve-outs around Evansville in the southwest and Chicago in the northwest. So those practical Hoosiers threw up their hands and said enough, and opted out.

Oh, but we’ve been through this many, many times. Indiana now observes DST, adopted the year after we left. And now it would seem Hoosiers were ahead of their time.

This week a Michigan lawmaker introduced a bill to end DST in Michigan. It’s not going anywhere, but it accompanies a wave of anti-DST blah-blah, the two previous links coming from Slate mainly because I’m too lazy to dive deeper.

This happens more often in recent years, I’ve noticed, and only in the spring. No one ever complains about getting an extra hour of sleep in the fall, even when it means gloomy evening commutes and grilling dinner by flashlight. When did we get so soft? It takes a couple days to adjust, but before long we’re all enjoying the long evenings and warm nights in the yard and bike rides after work. Aren’t we? I do, anyway. I can’t recall a single thumb-sucker about how stressful DST was until fairly recently.

Of course, that might be because there weren’t a million websites looking for clickbait, too.

So we limp into the weekend. I’m feeling my general energy return, probably because the light is returning, too. I’m even cleaning the house again. Woot.

Bloggage? Hmm.

Me, on Michigan’s aging northern region.

If you missed it in the comments yesterday, Bob Pence, a now-deceased member of our readership (but who only rarely commented) was revealed to have left $1 million to the ACRES land trust, sort of a local Nature Conservancy in northeast Indiana, dedicated to preserving natural areas. Good old Bob.

And while we’re on sort of a Hoosier kick, it looks like Fort Wayne daughter Nancy Snyderman is out of work at NBC News. I talked to her a few times and always liked her, but to judge from the comments, many, many others did not. She’ll land on her feet. But still.

Have a good weekend, folks.

Posted at 12:30 am in Current events | 96 Comments

Yuk yak.

Before we start, a few arty shots by the professional who photographed the show Friday night. The first one is helpfully annotated:


And this one has some fancy Photoshop filters, but I don’t know what they are. J.C. probably does.


That’s Kate with her hair all over her face. Nice pix, Brian Rozman Photography.

And so, we move on.

I think one of the things that drives me insane about the way my industry has been destroyed is the way it’s changed the public’s view of what constitutes publication. People my age came up in the newspaper business after the time of the big press moguls; the chains were ascendant, but the old principles were still in place. Publishing was a sacred trust, with ethics and responsibilities, and while this was a spectacularly flawed group of people trying to carry them out, we made a stab at it.

A few weeks ago I mentioned my troll, about how trying to get some of the shit he wrote about me taken down was a futile exercise, because no one seemed to be in control of a huge platform used all over the world to publish stuff.

But that, it turns out, is like talking to Watergate-era Ben Bradlee compared to trying to get some accountability out of today’s young tech millionaires. A front-page NYT story on Yik Yak today made my blood run cold, then a little hot with rage, although why bother? Why get upset? Nothing seems to bother them:

Like Facebook or Twitter, Yik Yak is a social media network, only without user profiles. It does not sort messages according to friends or followers but by geographic location or, in many cases, by university. Only posts within a 1.5-mile radius appear, making Yik Yak well suited to college campuses. Think of it as a virtual community bulletin board — or maybe a virtual bathroom wall at the student union. It has become the go-to social feed for college students across the country to commiserate about finals, to find a party or to crack a joke about a rival school.

Much of the chatter is harmless. Some of it is not.

“Yik Yak is the Wild West of anonymous social apps,” said Danielle Keats Citron, a law professor at University of Maryland and the author of “Hate Crimes in Cyberspace.” “It is being increasingly used by young people in a really intimidating and destructive way.”

Colleges are largely powerless to deal with the havoc Yik Yak is wreaking. The app’s privacy policy prevents schools from identifying users without a subpoena, court order or search warrant, or an emergency request from a law-enforcement official with a compelling claim of imminent harm.

Yes, that’s Yik Yak — an anonymous, micro-local slam book. A slam book that feeds on itself and fuels itself, and would it surprise you to learn it was founded by two frat boys, who zealously defend its anonymity and think the answer to hate speech, etc., is for individual posts to be “uprooted” or “downvoted.” God, I hate this bullshit:

ALEX GOLDMAN: Colgate University is a tiny private liberal arts school – just 3,000 students, way up in the mountains in Hamilton New York. It’s the most beautiful college campus in America, according to the Princeton Review, located in the 11th friendliest town in America, according to Forbes. But not according to Melissa Melendez, who is a student at Colgate.

MELISSA MELENDEZ: one of the first things I saw about me, was “bash that bitch’s head in.”

ALEX: Melissa saw that comment — and much worse — on an anonymous social media app called Yik Yak. Yik Yak lets you see posts or “yaks” as they’re called from users within a 10-mile radius. So it’s no surprise that it’s really popular at college campuses. People can post anonymously on yik yak about lame frat parties, or hot RAs or boring classes. But at Colgate last semester, the site also became a screen onto which the student body’s ugliest, most bigoted and violent thoughts were projected, for everyone to see. And Melissa Melendez and her friends were target of those thoughts.

That’s from a podcast transcript on the same subject. And here’s an Atlanta magazine story, ditto. The founders of Yik Yak – whose names are, I’m not kidding, Tyler Droll and Brooks Buffington, sound like two of the most entitled, miserable little brats in western civilization, and I hope someone sues them back to the stone age. People too stupid to understand that a totally anonymous communications platform might be used for racism, threats and hatred? They belong there.

All of which put me in a wonderful mood to read this Conor Friedersdorf explication of the Ferguson report. I haven’t read the source material yet, mainly because just the excerpts are enough to make the top of your head blow off:

We spoke… with an African-American woman who has a still-pending case stemming from 2007, when, on a single occasion, she parked her car illegally. She received two citations and a $151 fine, plus fees. The woman, who experienced financial difficulties and periods of homelessness over several years, was charged with seven Failure to Appear offenses for missing court dates or fine payments on her parking tickets between 2007 and 2010. For each Failure to Appear, the court issued an arrest warrant and imposed new fines and fees.

From 2007 to 2014, the woman was arrested twice, spent six days in jail, and paid $550 to the court for the events stemming from this single instance of illegal parking. Court records show that she twice attempted to make partial payments of $25 and $50, but the court returned those payments, refusing to accept anything less than payment in full. One of those payments was later accepted, but only after the court’s letter rejecting payment by money order was returned as undeliverable. This woman is now making regular payments on the fine. As of December 2014, over seven years later, despite initially owing a $151 fine and having already paid $550, she still owed $541.

And that’s only the cash-chiseling part of the police department. There was also this stuff:

… in August 2010, a lieutenant used an ECW in drive-stun mode against an African-American woman in the Ferguson City Jail because she had refused to remove her bracelets. The lieutenant resorted to his ECW even though there were five officers present and the woman posed no physical threat.

This is simply too much outrage for a Monday. So let’s try again tomorrow.

Posted at 12:30 am in Current events | 27 Comments

A burden, lifted.

Not a great weekend, but a productive one. Taxes, filed. (REFUND!) FAFSA, updated. (LESS EXPECTED FAMILY CONTRIBUTION!) And after it was all over, I stood up and put my hands on my hips and felt infrastructure.

I should explain. Six months ago I started adding side planks to my workout. One minute each side, three times a week at the end of the session. Today? Infrastructure. So y’all run out and start doing some side planks. Your waistline will thank you.

Seriously, though, there’s something about shoveling this great chore into the Outbox that just feels like springtime. A few years ago, I filed and immediately went on Craigslist and bought a Tiffany chain — this one, although not this one — from a woman, exchanging goods for cash in a Costco parking lot. I wear that chain several times a month and don’t regret a penny of the $75 I paid for it. (“My grandmother bought it for me, and I just…don’t like it,” she said. Excellent. She wasn’t the plain-silver-chain type, anyway.)

And why do I do the taxes? Because Alan does stuff like paint the dining room and bleach the mold out of the washer, which was his weekend project.

There was some fun, too: The Deadly Vipers played Friday night at the Hamtramck Music Festival. They were the last act at one of the venues, and the crowd seemed to dig it. I shot a bunch of hail mary pix with my phone, and they were the usual mixed bag. I was trying to capture the moshing, which was too close to the band for my comfort, but that’s how it goes in bars:


And then every so often you got a fun moment. BUDWEISER:


We also watched “Foxcatcher” because I was too tired to go out Saturday night, and it was, what’s the word? Disappointing. Tonally self-important, and the story was just sort of boring. Vanessa Redgrave, meanwhile, has three scenes as a nearly-dead WASP dowager, and manages to steal every one. Because she’s Vanessa Redgrave.

And now the winds have finally shifted and a breeze is blowing out of the southwest, and by Wednesday we are promised 50 degrees. Mirabile dictu.

So, did you catch the president’s speech at Selma? If you have only one thing to read about it, make it this. It was such a great speech; I can’t wait to see what the lunatics find to hate about it.

Comic relief: Tom and Lorenzo and a million pictures of “fashion clown Kim Kardashian,” who looks incredibly weird. (That said, I’m adding some blonde chunks to my hair the next touch-up I get, because why the hell not.)

Seems a good note to start Monday. Enjoy yours.

Posted at 12:17 am in Current events, Same ol' same ol' | 34 Comments

(More) dirty cops.

I haven’t found the time to read all of the Ferguson Report, but I’ve read enough to be disgusted. How can you not be?

…in July 2013 police encountered an African-American man in a parking lot while on their way to arrest someone else at an apartment building. Police knew that the encountered man was not the person they had come to arrest. Nonetheless, without even reasonable suspicion, they handcuffed the man, placed him in the back of a patrol car, and ran his record. It turned out he was the intended arrestee’s landlord. The landlord went on to help the police enter the person’s unit to effect the arrest, but he later filed a complaint alleging racial discrimination and unlawful detention. Ignoring the central fact that they had handcuffed a man and put him in a police car despite having no reason to believe he had done anything wrong, a sergeant vigorously defended FPD’s actions, characterizing the detention as “minimal” and pointing out that the car was air conditioned.

This is, as a friend of mine pointed out today, the virtual definition of a police state: Do as we say, don’t question us in any way, and you’ll be fine — in an air-conditioned car, no less. I can’t tell you how often I heard this during the Eric Garner protests: Just do what you’re told, and you’ll be fine. The hell with that. When citizens — invariably, poor ones — refuse to be revenue streams for these chiseling little fiefdoms, who can blame them? Not I.

The stories are so numerous, they blur into one another. Follow Ta’Nehisi Coates’ Twitter; he’s keeping up.

Yeesh, it’s been a week. A long one, a dull one, but most of all a very very cold one. I’ve been a good girl this winter — I haven’t missed many workouts — but man, it has not been easy, trudging out of the house at oh-dark-thirty five or six mornings a week. I’m writing this ahead of Friday morning’s weights routine, but I’m promised it will be 7 degrees when I do. FUCK THIS SHIT, I say. Next week, sunny and in the 40s — which will feel practically like Florida.

A little bloggage:

Via Hank, a very strange demonstration of a word-processor recorder. Fascinating, and very, weirdly accurate. Intimate.

How chickenshit aggregators steal the work of honest journalists, and are well-rewarded for it.

To observe its 60th anniversary, Sports Illustrated is posting some of the great stories from its archives. This one was devastating, how Rae Carruth killed his baby mama, nearly killed his unborn son, and continues to make everything hellish for those left behind. It’s a sad story, but beautifully told — and not entirely sad.

Off to bed I totter, but I plan to read in Laura Lippman’s new novel until I pass out. It could well keep me awake.

Have a great weekend, all.

Posted at 12:12 am in Current events | 61 Comments

Dirty cops.

Such a strange story developing around here, about a small town in one of the metro counties — only one square mile and home to fewer than 300 souls — has nearly 150 auxiliary reserve officers. The answer is fairly straightforward: The chief sells an auxiliary-reserve badge to any number of wealthy “supporters” in exchange for big donations of cash, not into his own pocket, but to the department and the village, where the money makes up a substantial portion of the municipal budget.

In exchange, the donors get a special police clearance that allows them to carry weapons into places that even permit holders can’t take them, including bars, casinos and stadiums. It’s a very mutual back-scratching sort of arrangement, but a local bar owner decided the chief was a bully and sued to get the list of auxiliaries released via a FOIA request. The release was this week, which brought the comedy to a whole new level:

With several news agencies trying to learn the names of auxiliary police officers in Oakley, one of the state’s leading First Amendment lawyers joined the fray.

But the attorney, Herschel Fink, didn’t want the names revealed. He wanted them kept secret.

Even more surprising was the reason.

Fink, who is one of the auxiliary officers, told village officials releasing the names could expose the officers to harm from ISIS, the radical Islamic group that has taken over parts of Iraq and Syria.

Oops, I sprained my eyes. Fink, by the way, is the Free Press’ lawyer. Note he is low in their story, and the lead in the News’. Snicker.

The whole thing put me in mind of the New Rome police scandal in Ohio, which we discussed here many years ago. It’s a reminder that whatever you can say about big-city corruption, small towns can match it dollar for dollar.

Real America. Don’t you love it?

I see some of you were discussing the Curt Schilling story yesterday. I read the blog in question, and had the same feeling as some of you, i.e., this man may be a jerk, but he’s right about this. (Someone explain the name of his blog, though; what is the significance of 38 pitches?) I note one of the young morons who said rude things about his daughter was a radio guy, in the sense that he has a show on the community-college radio station, for one whole hour a week.

Now, I know our own Julie Robinson’s father was a radio guy, but with the exception of him and a few public-station dudes, well, all I can say is: I am not surprised. Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, at al — you think these guys got into radio via public-policy think tanks? No. They were disgusting radio guys who decided their opinions need to be shared with the world. When I worked briefly at WOWO in Fort Wayne, I saw things on their bulletin board that would have gotten you horsewhipped at my own office.

If this kid is capable of learning and growth, he’ll absorb this setback and move into the big world that does not include radio.

Not much more bloggage today. You guys?

Posted at 12:30 am in Current events | 47 Comments

Sun, with a promise of more.

I was going through my Instagram today and realized I had an example of the East Jordan Iron Works manhole covers that I should have included with yesterday’s post. So here you go:


Isn’t that lovely? Computer-aided design has changed the game, hasn’t it?

It was one of those Mondays — a long staff meeting that ran over the lunch hour. Sometimes a decent breakfast can carry me past 1 p.m., but there wasn’t enough fat in Monday’s, and I was ravenous by noon, to the point I could hear my own stomach feeding on itself. But the meeting was productive, the skies were sunny and the temperature kissed the low 30s, which set just enough melting in motion that, when the temperature dropped with the sun, the sidewalks were covered with glare ice.

It’s snowing like crazy at the moment. Nothing more treacherous than ice covered with a thin coating of snow. Alan went to walk Wendy and fell twice before he reached the neighbor’s property line. I’ll try that again later. In cleats.

So now it’s Tuesday, the week has momentum, and I have the usual array of crap to do. I’m trying to get into “House of Cards,” but it’s losing me, and fast. If I want sudsy soap drama, I watch “Empire.”

Now I’m going to hit the phones and hope to carve out a few minutes for Bibi. You?

Open thread.

Posted at 9:18 am in Current events | 42 Comments