THEY'RE B-A-A-A-CK (?)
As tempting as it may be to dismiss cassettes as another display of analog hipsterism, the mini-trend has very real, practical benefits for budding artists . . .
SNARKY WEB LIST! (CAUTION!)
Here is a throwaway list such as appears every 12 seconds on the intertoob: All Fifty States Ranked by Winter Climate! How can you resist?
I include it here for its remarkably filagreed level of bitchiness. For example, here is Arizona, the second-best winter state, according to these brats.
Occasionally, retired Kroger business executives from Ohio and their Pilates-instructor second wives will accidentally move to Flagstaff and get very sad and angry when they realize the average winter temperature is somewhere in the 20s. But most of Arizona offers up that dry desert day heat (it was 88 in Phoenix last week) that is good for arthritis and any lingering guilt about leaving their first wives to deal with their delinquent teenage kids back in Indian Hill.
If you can't get enough:
[btw, Hawaii is best, Minnesota worst]
RIP DEBBIE REYNOLDS
WHAT COULD GO WRONG? (self-driving cars division)
(arizona republic, 12/26/2016)
Woman found alive after nights stranded in forest
A Pennsylvania mother who trekked about 26 miles in snowy northern Arizona was found alive early Saturday after spending two nights in the forest while searching for help.
Karen Klein, 47, her husband and their 10-year-old son got stranded in the snow along a forest service road while trying to reach the North Rim of the Grand Canyon.
State Route 67 is closed in the winter and the family's GPS system detoured them onto a forest service road, where their vehicle broke down.
TESLA'S REAL IMPORTANCE
Tesla’s great innovation isn’t the way its cars get around. The concept of using electricity to power cars isn’t exactly a new one, after all. Rather, the company’s most meaningful innovation lies in its business practices, which differ significantly from those of other car manufacturers. As a result, Tesla’s impact will extend far beyond the company’s bottom line. Should its vehicles become commonplace it will mean a big shift in revenues throughout the economy. Let’s count the ways.
Every Tesla vehicle that hits the road will cut into sales of petroleum . . . Nor does Tesla engage in much of the expensive marketing efforts that the rest of the industry does, like sponsoring sports teams. Tesla didn’t bother to show up to the New York Auto Show . . . or spend a lot of time and effort wooing and coddling vast networks of dealers. Tesla doesn’t have dealers and sells directly to consumers through retail stores that it owns. Every sale of a Tesla vehicle, then, represents a loss of margin for a car dealer—and a threat to a century-old structure in which vehicles are sold through dealers who maintain large lots and inventory.
The cowboys on this new Russian ranch here still have a few things to learn. And unlearn. In a throwback to the old Soviet way of doing things, while the two were trying to move the recalcitrant cow, four others were standing idly by shouting advice.
Watching the greenhorns from afar was Ashley Chester Corlett, one of 10 American trainers brought in by the ranch’s owner, the Miratorg company. It chose them over Brazilians and Australians in large part because of the similarity between the climate in Wyoming and central Russia, where temperatures can drop to 20 degrees below zero Fahrenheit (minus 29 Celsius).
The restless life of Margaret Wise Brown
Is it possible that the most inspired children’s book writers never grow up? By that I don’t mean that they understand or have special affection or affinity toward children, but that they don’t understand adulthood, and I mean that in the best possible sense.
jake's poetry corner
DIRTY OLD BOMB SNIFFING DOG
Well I'm not very handsome to look at
I'm shaggy and never eat hog
And I'd love to die for my jihad
But for that dirty old dog
Bomb sniffin' dog!
Seems like you're always around
Embassies, rallies, and airports
You dirty old bomb sniffin' hound.
Now if I can't find something to blow up
Cuz that dog keeps shuttin me down
I'll have to switch up my targets
And take out that bomb sniffin' hound
Bomb sniffin' dog!
You even bark at my shoes
At parades, Super Bowls and conventions
I got the un-blown-up terrorist blues.
© Fred Andersen 2017
Sorry about that, sort of. Here's the original "poem"
DON'T MAKE WAVES!
Some (or Many) may remember writer William Safire as a conservative fulminator, but he was also an dedicated and very well known amateur linguist. Here he is on how such phrases as “Don’t make waves,” and “Back to the drawing board,” originated as jokes. Click here to read the article.
A MOVEABLE FEAST
In one of his lasts acts of writing, Ernest Hemingway began a memoir which he intended as a celebration of his youth in Paris in the 1920s.
The difficulty I have with A Moveable Feast is where it falls in Hemingway’s life. He wrote this at the end of his career, about his artistic coming of age. When he was writing as a young man in Paris, he was not yet Hemingway. But at the time of writing this book, he certainly was, and he knew it.
THE END OF THE WEDDING PARTY
a little light reading for a cold winter's night . . .
There was no moon, but the starlight was clear on the snow. A black drove came up over the hill behind the wedding party. The wolves ran like streaks of shadow; they looked no bigger than dogs, but there were hundreds of them.
Something happened to the hindmost sledge: the driver lost control-- he was probably very drunk--the horses left the road, the sledge was caught in a clump of trees, and overturned. The occupants rolled out over the snow, and the fleetest of the wolves sprang upon them. The shrieks that followed made everybody sober.
Willa Cather, My Antonia
EXCERPT: A LINE IN THE SAND
He grabbed his gym bag and looked in. His hand came out with money. He put a little packet of bills on the couch next to him. It was held together with a spring clip. He put another one on top of it. “Two.”
“You’ve got the stink of drug money all over you,” I said. I waved to Carissa at the other end of the pool. She seemed to look at me but did not move.
“Three,” he said.
I felt my legs tremble. Much as I wanted to leave, I could not move. I sat down on one of the lounges that faced the pool. I was no longer angry about being thought a whore, or afraid of being killed. I believed he really meant what he said. In his mind it was all perfectly ordered. He was buying purity. I am not Purity. “You still don’t get it. I don’t want anything you’ve got, cuz you are trouble. And I don’t want no more of it.”
Come Buy My Pretty Balloons—BOOKS!
VIDEO: DARKNESS, DARK . . .
This is a video I made for my story "Darkness, Darkness," which is now being rewritten as a novel, A Line in the Sand. The video conveys the tone and theme of the story: How do everyday people survive in a world of crime and corruption?
How to become a teenage mom!
What did they call that thing that made mothers want to strangle their babies? “I think you’re a little confused.” Callie spoke soothingly. “You know, after-birth crazy.”
Michelle stared at her daughter blankly. “Postpartum depression?”
Crazy, heartfelt, hilarious!
Read a preview of Pregnant Without a Cause at:
LILY TORRENCE PUBLICATION!!!
this is a second boc