Friday, November 13, 2009

Something light for the weekend. Thoughts to ponder

A friend sent me these thoughts to ponder (with my comments in bold italic):

1. I think part of a best friend's job should be to immediately clear your computer's history if you die.

2. Nothing sucks more than that moment during an argument when you realize you're wrong. (Maybe my favorite of the whole bunch)

3. I totally take back all those times I didn't want to nap when I was younger.

4. There is great need for a sarcasm font.

5. How the hell are you supposed to fold a fitted sheet? (A pet peeve of mine too)

6. Was learning cursive really necessary?

7. Map Quest needs to start their directions on #5. I'm pretty sure I know how to get out of my neighborhood.

8. Obituaries would be a lot more interesting if they told you how the person died.

9. I can't remember the last time I wasn't at least kind of tired.

10. Bad decisions make good stories. (True fact)

11. You never know when it will strike, but there comes a moment at work when you know that you just aren't going to do anything productive for the rest of the day. (Never happened to me ;) - Riiiiight!)

12. Can we all just agree to ignore whatever comes after Blue Ray? I don't want to have to restart my collection...again. (Whats Blue Ray?)

13.. I'm always slightly terrified when I exit out of Word and it asks me if I want to save any changes to the ten-page paper that I swear I did not make any changes to.

14. "Do not machine wash or tumble dry" means I will never wash this -- ever. (Guilty)

15. I hate it when I miss a call by the last ring (Hello? Hello? Damn it!), but when I immediately call back, it rings nine times and goes to voicemail. What'd you do after I didn't answer? Drop the phone and run away?

16. I hate leaving my house confident and looking good and then not seeing anyone of importance the entire day. What a waste.

17. I keep some people's phone numbers in my phone just so I know not to answer when they call. (I don't do this)

18. My 4-year old son asked me in the car the other day "Dad what would happen if you ran over a ninja?" How the hell do I respond to that?

19. I think the freezer deserves a light as well..

20. I disagree with Kay Jewelers. I would bet on any given Friday or Saturday night more kisses begin with a Budweiser than Kay.

It's official: Detroit Daily Press debuts November 23

A couple very familiar names among those hired. I knew one for several weeks, but couldn't say. Crain's has a story from the press conference today.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Media got shooting info wrong, again: Editor and Publisher

Editor and Publisher has a pretty harsh criticism of the coverage of the Fort Hood shootings last week.

First the uncorrected (for hours) report that the shooter had been killed and then the complete refresh of the information crediting the woman police officer with shooting the suspect when it was actually an African-American police officer.

The E&P article hints at a possible racial reason (the woman police officer was white) for the mistake, I really think E&P has gone over the edge on this one.

Clearly, news organizations were relying on military reports in the early hours and the blame for the misinformation falls to the the military. It is highly unlikely reporters had access to the scene or any of the witnesses in those early hours so it is hard to fault the media for quoting military sources for the info.

New Detroit Daily Press close to hitting the streets

Editor and Publisher is announcing a press conference for tomorrow, Friday, November 13th, for some important new information about the launch of The Detroit Daily Press.

I know one of the reporters hired for the new paper and he's a great choice to begin the nucleus of a reporting staff.

While it might seem a little like shoveling sand against the tide to start a daily paper when so many are going the other way, I have to admit I really, really want this to work. If the new owners believe they can make a living with a daily product with a 150,000 readership, I don't think that will be hard to reach.

Anyway, I love people who take on a great challenge and I wish them well.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Thank you veterans!

Today is the day that we honor veterans. My father, a World War II veteran, wrote to me this morning that his plans for this day are to get his ears roto-rootered so he can hear again. He is shunning the free meal offerings, but I want him to know that I and others appreciate his World War II service.

As readers of this blog will know it has been a sad year for me, my younger brother Mike, a Vietnam veteran, died on New Year's Day. My father-in-law Red, a member of the 75th Division in World War II died July 7th and my former father-in-law Walt, a member of the Army's 10th Mountain Division, died in October.

My uncle Bill, a World War II veteran died in 2008, and my stepfather Ray, a Navy pilot in World War II, died about 20 years ago.

In reality, I might not be here today except for the connection my grandmother, Ethel Tyson, and grandfather, Ray Smith, made at an Army base in Battle Creek, Michigan where my grandfather was stationed during World War I. I know he was a sergeant and don't know if he was headed to Europe at some point, but from what I understand he never left the States.

I could be wrong about this, and I'm sure my father will correct me if I am, but family lore has it that Ethel and Ray met at a dance at or near the base somewhere around 1918. The rest as they say is history.

So this day has special meaning for me. My father reminded me in an e-mail this morning that he recalled that during Vietnam when my brother and I returned home from our service there that we avoided wearing our uniform off the base because of the nasty reaction we got from folks. (We lived in the San Francisco Bay Area, which is not known for its patriotic fervor). People held veterans in disdain in those days. When I went back to college, I avoided mentioning my service so as not to complicate my studies and grades with very liberal professors.

I'm grateful that the country has reached out to veterans, even when they disagree with the war the military service people are serving in. It is right to honor their service today and to say "Thank You."

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Old friends, wasted talent

Was conversing online with a former colleague who is also recently out of a newspaper job. After I disconnected and had a chance to think, it seems so sad and wasteful that so many talented people (and I'm not talking about myself here because I would have been retired now and there are plenty more talented people than me) floating around out there without a beat to cover.

Politicians and others who need serious watching must be reveling in the thought that the field is now open for them to play their games with only a small chance of being caught.

Many of the folks left behind in the business are more than capable and talented of doing the work, but with so few of them I can't help but believe a lot is going to go unreported.

With some of our difficult family issues starting to settle a little, I hope to start back at looking at my former career and the careers of others and live up to the title of this blog and start writing again.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Ezra Kornscabble weighs in on AnnArbor.com

The Daily Derelict blog has some recent insights on AnnArbor.com.