Browsing Month January, 2006

Rule 2

The cost to read an archived news article should always be less than the cost of an entire copy of the same newspaper at a newsstand.

Model horse fun

There’s no fun as fun as model horse fun.

Bad Pitch Blog

In a time of war, a hero: Bad Pitch Blog, revealing the slab-handed and two-anused world of public relations.

A man opens a wooden crate with the help of a bird

Despite its clich├ęd title (“Speaking in Tongues”—my God, has originality forsaken every headline writer on the planet?), this article by J.M. Coetzee about translations and translators of his work is worth reading.

Best lede in years

This New York Times lede is the best I’ve seen on a story in a long while: A shirtless man was found dead in the basement of the Indonesian Consulate in Manhattan today, a butcher knife protruding from his chest, the police said. Compare this to Newsday’s blah lede: An Indonesian man was found dead more…

I loathe, loathe, loathe Paypal and have since the day it launched

Paypal is consistently the worst user experience I have had since I first used the Internet in 1992. Today the problem is that I’m trying to change the home address on my account. On Friday I bought a $29 iBook keyboard on eBay and the seller seems reluctant to send it to my office. (Packages more…

Bureaucracy puts wine cellar in limbo

What happens when a bureaucracy decides that moving a 12,000-bottle, 30-year-old wine collection from one restaurant to another is illegal? “She kept referring to it as ‘liquor,’” says Mr. Geisweiller, with a distaste that can only be successfully communicated with a French accent.

Peter Sawyer, peter players, petermen, and knockout drops

In researching peter player ‘a robber who uses administers knockout drops to victims’ for the Historical Dictionary of American Slang, I came across an article that says the term peter player was named after a Peter Sawyer known for using knockout drops on victims. If that’s true, then peter player may have been the original more…

Between the age of consent and the onset of reason

“But Mark was 37 when he got married. Does that sound too young to you? I don’t think age was the issue. The main thing was that Mark was just a degenerate. He liked very young girls—school girls. Ideally somewhere between the ‘age of consent and the onset of reason.’”

Chinatown Falls on Hard Times

“It’s comedy, in Mandarin. As you can see, it’s a man dressed in a bikini outfit so you know it has to be a comedy.”