Patience is a virtue because strangling people is a vice. Patience might not be a virtue if it enables sloth and cluelessness. Patience might then be something that does everyone a disservice, because if you are patient with someone who is just - not - understanding - that the time for leisurely chatting with the clerk about products present and past and perhaps the marvels made in some misty world yet to come, then you fail to hasten that conversation’s conclusion. Everyone suffers! You, the person after you, the person before you! So it’s wrong to be patient. Glower! Mutter! Sigh? Nod wearily, if the moment calls for it!

How’s that for self-justification?

When the clerk had finished up with the customer - after 20 minutes, at least - he came up to me and asked if I had a question. No, I said, and I pointed to something. I want to buy this.

He was surprised: that’s it?

I am the man on the other side of the universe from the last guy, I said.

Now, I wasn’t in the right. I know that. I was being brusque in my manner before, and if I had been in a situation that required a half an hour of careful discussions with a computer store salesman ALTHOUGH I CANNOT IMAGINE HOW THAT CAN POSSIBLY HAPPEN I would have appreciated the time the clerk spent with me. But just because you can put yourself in someone else’s shoes doesn’t mean you want to. Because they are Birkenstocks and were full of stranger feet.

But! Didn’t ruin a perfect day. Warm enough; a coolness lurks in the margins of the days this week and floods out when the sun passes behind a cloud. No full strength July this week. Evenings are cool. I don’t care.

My shoulders ache. Reason: too much pdf batching. Let me explain.

Last week at the Work Blog I evaluated the new iTunes Radio For You Music What’s New My Music Connect application, which streams untold quantities of music I don’t want to my devices, where I don’t want to listen to them. I don’t want it. No sir, I don’t. Part of this has to do with my attitude towards streaming: it’s like my parents’ attitude towards long-distance. IT COSTS MONEY. If I’m on wifi, great, and we’re usually on wifi, right? So what’s the prob? Partly it’s the epsychological difference between a song I have, and own, and resides on my equipment, and a song that’s floating out there and has to be fetched. In my mind I want what I have to be accessible whenever, and that means sitting at my desk or walking around the deck of a ship. But, you say, you are seldom on the deck of a ship. And even then ships have wifi. Yeah: one bit per minute, at a ruinous cost, but that’s not the point. I don’t want access to the great catalog in the sky. I want my stuff. And when I find something interesting in the Great Catalog, I will excise it and call it my own.

In short: cloud music is just one more damned thing to fiddle with, and I’m having enough joy (warning: no joy involved) with photographs. When you take a picture, it goes into your Photo Stream. It is also part of your Camera Roll. Your Photo Stream syncs with all your other devices. When you plug your phone in, it imports your Camera Roll. Which is the same as your Photo Stream, unless you deleted a picture after it was put in the Stream. You end up with a Library on one computer, which has lots of junk unless you weed it out. Which I do. I make a habit of downloading my photos every other day or so, putting them in named folders with named files, and deleting them from Photos. Except some live on in the Stream. You can delete these, but you get a warning that they will be - get this - DELETED. Every other week I run a duplicate finder program, which helps, but holy smoking Belial it’s a waste of time.

Let’s put it this way: imagine if you got your photos back from the developer. There were 22 in an envelope. You put the envelope in a drawer. Later you took the pictures out and put them in a photo album. Later you learned that the pictures were also in the envelope in the drawer. And half of them were in a box on the shelf in the closet. When you threw away one from the box you heard a voice that said the picture might also be deleted from your photo album.

I was considering uploading my archives Google Photos, which has free unlimited storage forever: attractive. Usual terms and conditions: we can scan your pictures for things and send you ads based on those things which is awesome! But as far as I can tell it stamps the pictures with the upload date, not the creation date, so if you upload baby pictures from 2001 they’re in a 2015 folder. UNLESS you use Google Drive, which has a bit more control, but isn’t unlimited.

All of these options, I understand. All of these differences, I get. Features, benefits, drawbacks, advantages: easily grasped. Yet it feels like a hot stone in my head I can’t quite get around. Which? When? Where? And so I have a word to propose:


It’s more than complicated. It’s Complificated, a word that is slightly more complex that mere complicated. The accretion of options seems designed for people who do not have a folder-based worldview, but dump everything from the small temporary bag into the big silo. Since I am not silo-based, what’s the solution? What I just finished, which was converting everything I have written in the last 15 years into pdfs, and uploading them TO FOLDERS THANK YOU on Google Drive, and a backup on the Amazon Cold Storage I have. Also an offsite copy on disk. Last step:

Print it all off.

I know, I know. Madness. But it’s my work, and I don’t want a mushy bottomless pit of stuff in various formats. I’m all digital, but at the end of it all I want a pile of papers, bound, in plastic, in crates. And then some day it goes to the U of M archives, which will roll its eyes and say “oh, OKAY, I guess” and my papers will await the moment when someone, some day, decides it matters for some reason germane to some research project. Because it includes a full photographic record of a certain period of Minneapolis as well.

I go through this once a year, crunching, winnowing, selecting, editing, moving to formats and storage mediums that will endure. But there is no guarantee that any will endure.

Except print.



And make sure you dress appropriately. Annie, get your gun:

Apparently you can whip the whole "French Provincial" look together with some bath towels.


SERIALS is on hiatus until August. What then, you say? What then? Well:


If you think I'm starting to narrow down some features to the point of absurdity, I would be willing to entertain your argument. While you make it, I'll be over here collecting and annotating radio station logos.

Or, in other words, there's two weeks of this until Serials resumes. We begin with one in a series of rustic ads for my hometown station. For years they ran with this farmer chap. Yessir!

"Red River Valley hayseeds." So that's what the station called us when they were talking to their peers.

The copy references "Hooperatings," which were, as you might guess, ratings, calculated by a company named Hooper. He seems mostly forgotten now, but from this account - the official bio - was something of a character. Died in a car crash in 1956. Wikipedia:

During the late 1940s the catchphrase "How's your Hooper?" was a well-known allusion to the size of a series' audience.

And I'll bet that found its way into popular vernacular as well.

WGN, or World's Greatest Newspaper:


I don't know what that building is. WGN was in the Tribune Tower, I believe, and perhaps that's supposed to be a picture of the four-story annext next to the tower.

Hey look at us, we can afford color:

50,000 watt blowtorch; you can hear that screamer anywhere at night. Went MOR for a while, but it's been talk / news for a while. Rather dull logo, but I provide it for comparison so you can see what the industry was doing. BECAUSE YOU'RE DYING TO KNOW, aren't you? Of course.

Why a bee?


The Sacramento Bee was the flagship paper, and it spread throughout the rest of the chain. Handy friendly branding.

Here's some fortuitous call letters:

But 1310 is The Light now, an African-American religious station with the call letters WTLC. Who, you might ask, gives up call letters like those? Well:

The owners of WISH radio also started a television station with the same call letters on Channel 8 in Indianapolis. In late 1963 the radio station, along with is sister FM operation, was sold to STAR Broadcasting (Don W. Burden) who changed the call letters to WIFE and WIFE-FM. WIFE was the ratings leader during the mid and late sixties, sometime garnering as much of a forty share of the Indianapolis radio audience.

WIFE. Well, I suppose that had a built-in market, too.

Another great name that wouldn't last:

It's WGTK now, which sounds like you have a fishbone caught in your throat. A Salem station.

That walking fellow appears in lots of ads; Free & Peters must have made a fortune positioning ads around the country.


A good name if you're an FM station.

7,324 sets! Each one beaming jagged rays to a hypnotized population!

That'll do for this week; more to come. To say nothing of the batch from the 50s and 60s, but I'll leave those for more between-the-serials fill-ins.

Just three World's Fair cards today, as I space them out a bit. That's it - see you around!



blog comments powered by Disqus