Daughter wants to start a newspaper. I advised her to come with an online site.
“But how will I charge money? If it’s a newspaper I can charge people money to get a copy.”
Honestly, we had this conversation. She wants to start a newsletter for her classmates about their shared interests, like Warrior Cats and anime about Warrior Cats and stories about Warrior Cats. She had intended to charge 15 cents per copy.
“Your daddy did that,” said my wife.
“You DID?” Pause. “About what?”
But I came up with something the school printed off for me, and they gave me a mimeo sheet too.
An archaic technology that smelled wonderful. It’s one of the scents we no longer know: mimeo fluid. The very term is lovely to say: mimeo fluid. “I printed it off in the school office. But that was a long time ago.”
“Yeah, but no one will pay me for a web page.”
“They will if you password-protect it and sell logins.” (Remembered I had some passwords to send out; felt the usual OMG NO TIME EVERYTHING IS CRUSHING DOWN INTO ONE DENSE BALL OF DREAD THAT SITS ON MY CHEST AND IT HAS EYES, HORRIBLE EYES, HUNDRED OF EYES THAT STARE AND DO NOT BLINK)
“Passwords?” she said, eyes alight. This would make it even cooler. This was great. So this will be our weekend job.
I was amused to read that the New York Times wants to charge $360 for the iPad version of the print edition. Well, of course they do. But at least it’s not as bad as Newsday’s decision to wall everything off unless you’re a subscriber. They also redesigned their site based on the premise that people like a thumb pushed into their eye sockets:
Reminds me of an old line from somewhere, Sandra Bernhardt perhaps: I rely on my personality for birth control. The site is actually marginally better if you inverse the color scheme:
Came home. Napped. No dreams, thank God; last night I dreamed all my dead relatives showed up at my house, one after the other, starting with my uncle. He sat down and said nothing. The standard confusion of the newly dead – reticent, truculent. I started cleaning up the house; my mother told me I should have neatened up before everyone got there. It struck me as uncharacteristic; she wouldn’t say that. But I said I didn’t know. She said I told you we were coming. I felt bad I’d missed the message and worse that I hadn’t called her. My dad was sitting next to her, with his early-photo poker face, looking much younger. I looked back to the living room and saw all my dead relatives, chatting, smoking, carrying on as they always did at Grandma Lileks’ house after church on Sunday. I wanted to apologize to all of them. My Mom spoke: And I think your friend should go.
I was scooping up small paper squares (orange) scattered on the table when the alarm went off.
The mystery isn’t why we think the Romans believed their ancestors observed their actions, it’s why we think they don’t.
Went downstairs, thinking Thursday already, and we’re behind on our piano practice; behind behind behind. It took the morning paper to tell me it was Tuesday, and then I felt depressed. Jasper came downstairs, which was unusual – he usually waits until everyone’s up, and I wake early and leave alone, having said good morning to no one. He gave me a look: breakfast? Well, sure, old friend. Here. Dig in.
Not in a mood to listen to music right away, so I tuned into the XM old radio show channel. Boston Blackie, crap from the old days. I hate Boston Blackie. Parked, slam door, wheetwheeted the alarm, crunch crunch crunch, take care passing the street. Buses just come out of nowhere if you’re not paying attention, and since this headline is a running joke with a friend at the paper, I’d hate to go out that way. Or maybe I would, because there would be one fellow who’d laugh at the funeral. For the right reasons.
Used to have another running joke with the fellow on the other side of the cube who scoured the wires and fine-tuned the front page of the website: “Nothing,” he’d say when I came in, meaning, no big news. “We’ll manage,” I would say. He was fired the other day and so was the sharp sarcastic but ultra-Minnesota-nice lady in the next cubicle down. The fellow with whom I have the running Onion bus-hed joke was moved over to a desk two down from the first one I had, close to the center of the room. When there’s one fire in one can, you move close to warm your hands, I guess. I sat down at my desk, looked across the partition, and noticed that one of them had turned off the TV over their pillar before they left. Seems disrespectful to turn it back on. Someone will.
So, what do you want to do with your life? I believe it was Neidermeyer who asked that question, albeit in a different context. The answer in the video? “I wanna rock.” This is not a sufficient objective. If one wants to attain success and personal satisfaction as a musician in a popular-music ensemble, yes, I suppose it’s a good answer, although it’s more appropriate for “what do you wish to do with your 20s until you are dropped by the record label for disappointing sales for your follow-up, and keep in mind that’s one of the best-case scenarios.” If you want to rock your entire life, well, have at it, but you might as well add “win the lottery while being struck by lightning while answering the phone to find it’s the wrong number and the Pope is calling me and he won the Powerball too, and hold on Benedict, sir, Christina Hendricks at the door ” because it’s just as likely.
If, however you define “rock” to mean living an existence based around the consumption of heavy-metal music, beer, reefer in a series of drab, ill-furnished basement apartments subsidized by a serious of hair-net jobs, then this is not a commendable aspiration. It is not even an aspiration at all; it is a desire to float numb in a shallow stream, with the only notable sensations derived from striking your head on stones as the current bears you along.
Still, it’s a good question. It may be the root of the massive knots in my stomach and thrumming pulse and shadow-on-the-door-of-a-cottage-by-a-dark-Scottish-loch feeling as I drive to work. This could be a delayed mid-life crisis, although I should live so long for this to be mid-life. I was really happy when my mid-life should have hit hard, and now I find I have maneuvered myself into a situation where I have a brain full of bees. Interesting bees, but bees. There’s more, but I’ll spare you.
My daughter wanted me to see her newspaper before she went to bed, so I took a look. She laid it out in Pages.
It’s really good. But there’s one problem.
She uses Hobo as a headline typeface.
As you may know, Hobo is a font that gives me hives. And so we had the same old argument about Hobo.
“DAD It’s just a font.”
“Fonts are never just fonts. Fonts are clothes. Fonts are hats, jewelry, gestures, opening remarks. Fonts are what you show the world first. There’s a reason they’re called type faces.”
“But I like it.”
Well, that’s different. You like it? Do it. God knows it’s no fun when you can’t.
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A Book I Recommend
The Distant Past
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