‘Time for a new brand of journalism’:
What’s up with DaleyNews
? OK, so the headline was a mere 179.99 degrees off. Or, if you’re being truly kind, 90 degrees off, with the words ‘rape’ and ‘city’ being accurate. But it was a slow day! ... Alas, it all goes to show that it really is time for a ‘new brand of journalism,’
giving brand credit to the NYT for breaking a story
that was reported a month earlier
in your favorite lovable tab that, yes, does tend to take reckless glee in hurtling over headline cliffs now and then. ...
... Think there's a way to mathematically compute
over-the-cliff headlines? It would be fascinating. ... Vertical speed, height of cliff, distance from base …Update
-- Sometimes, um, I think Adam
takes Hub Blog, the Herald and definitely himself a little too seriously. I was just having, you know, fun, Adam, with both papers' foibles of the day. Oh never mind. ... Jeez.The true ‘curse’: The Yawkeys: Steve Buckley
(sub. req.) remembers the late Earl Wilson, only the second black player signed by the Sox and promptly traded in 1966 after he spoke out against a racist bartender who refused to serve him a beer. Wilson went on to win 22 games in 1967 -– and Buckley makes the obvious connection to how the Sox could have won the series that year had Wilson been in the rotation. ... It shouldn’t have taken 86 years.
‘At the risk of opening the Summers/Harvard can of worms’:
Reader No. 1 takes the risk:
"At the risk of opening the Summers/Harvard can of worms again (and contradicting my observation that there is an overabundance of Harvard coverage in our local press), please note these insights from the long missed, happily returned ‘Man Without Qualities’
blog, and what is really at stake in the faculty and Presidential dispute.
"Also check out these earlier posts on same topics -- here
-- with the latter convincingly suggesting that ideology is NOT the issue (and breaking notably with the Blogosphere and Professional Conservative Commentariat)." The future: Google
had $1.26 billion in revenue in the first quarter. One billion. Two hundred and sixty million. Dollars. One quarter. … Now read this Rupert Murdoch speech
and you begin to appreciate the media sea change he’s talking about. 'A perception that he has checked out politically':
Poll numbers finally catch up to Mitt
‘The Panzer Pope,’ Part II:
Initial news reports on the new pope mentioned how he ‘deserted’ from the German army in May 1945, a slightly disingenuous description apparently peddled by the Vatican to put some heroic gloss on his wartime past. But it wasn’t heroic. Remember: the war was all but over in May 1945 and most German troops left were either dead, wounded, captured or deserted. So it’s fair game to run stories exploring Ratzinger’s past as a Hitler youth.
The verdict? Most young males in Germany were all but drafted into the Hitler Youth. Ratzinger was young at the time and one of them. He should be forgiven. Pope John Paul II, who as a Pole had every reason to look upon Ratzinger’s wartime youth with deep suspicion, clearly didn’t think it was an issue. ... I don’t think Benedict being a German is going to help save the local German church.
has a good column on Catholic politics in the United States. ... Right after the November election, we heard a lot of liberal Democrats bemoaning the Christian right vote and how the Democratic Party had to remain secular, etc. etc. etc. But that party revisionism was and is horse doo doo. I was raised in a pretty devout Catholic family and it was heresy to even think of voting Republican. And that was a time when Catholicism was far more conservative than it is today, culturally. Somehow more than a few Dems have convinced themselves that the party has a history of secularalism -- when the exact opposite is true.
'The Panzar Cardinal':
Armchair Gen. Savin Hill with instant analysis of the analysis of the new Pope:
"Re: New Pope:
"On MSNBC I actually heard some talking head use the phrase 'the panzer cardinal.' Well - finally the Catholic Church is getting some sorely needed Teutonic discipline. I want to see shoes shined, hair combed, STRAIGHT communion lines and snappy exits from those confessionals. I said snappy, people!"
I truly hope MSNBC didn't use the word 'panzer.'Update
-- Reader AM writes in: "True story -- When Ratso visited Boston, oh, 20 years ago, Fr. Monan was working the phones desperately trying to get the visitor a speaking gig somewhere other than BC -- where they didn't want him on campus. (This was over his attempted crackdown on Catholic theologians, and in particular his call to subject Catholic universities to the authority of local bishops.)"
‘They don't hang up division banners in Boston’:
No they don’t, and this is perhaps the most erratic team to win a division championship in Celts history. But it is, as Paul Pierce says
, a start. So a big congrats to the Celts. ....‘After the whuppin' at Lexington and Concord’:
is going to give battle updates today. The tension mounts. What’s going on out there in the ‘burbs? Are our boys winning? ... Redcoats. I hate ‘em. Always have...
'Only the accountable is accounted for':
Hub Blog, hopelessly unable to comprehend the deconstructionist algorithms of demystified paradigms within the context of contemporary nihilism, humbly submits that this review
of an entire book on Bob Dylan’s “Like a Rolling Stone’’ perfectly reflects the contradictions, not to mention the dialectical cynicism of rampant steamrollering of idealism, the paradox of people coming to a peak four decades ago, and thinking, postulating, philosophizing and hungering for something beyond history taught in a non-didactic way.
After all, how can one argue with the argument in these sentences: “He's kept alive a sense of these alchemical currents in a banally reductionist age, and continues to delight in the unaccountable at a time when, among critics, often only the accountable is accounted for - and then in fashionably smug, unflappable tones. Visionary critics, from Horace to Walter Pater to Pauline Kael, have always gone on the assumption that critiquing a work means recreating it.”Update
-- From reader TO: "I too thought Dylan piece hyper and somewhat incomprehensible but then I read the hyper (Havlicek post below) offering from you and wondered why you can't see the same faults? 'felt alive,' 'superb,' 'most memorable moment'??? When was the Dylan book written? When was the basketball event? Nearly all the complaints you had about the Dylan piece are echoed by you about the Havlicek column."HB's response
-- The juxtaposition of the two posts within the same post was meant as sort of silly irony and, in addition, abject sincerity displayed in non-alchemical comprehensibilty that I'm frankly surprised anyone would hold me acountable for due to the unaccountablly accountable nature of its subject. I obviously failed in my task.‘Johnny Havlicek stole the ball!':
After reading the above-linked article, I felt alive again after reading Bob Ryan’s superb column
on the 40th anniversary of perhaps the most memorable moment in Celtics history. ... Speaking of the Celts
Mayor discovers dirty streets:
The mayor is taking bold action
to clean up streets. ... Do you think newspaper columns and stories, widespread neighborhood grumbling, blog criticisms, a mayoral opponent and other factors had anything
to do with the mayor’s sudden tidy fetish?‘Who worked on President Bush’s New Hampshire campaign’:
Forget Shawn Feddeman’s departure.
It’s her replacement that intrigues. ... Then again Mitt is punching back at the also intriguing Deval Patrick (here
). ... Throw it all together and what do you get? Running for reelection? President? Which? Please. He wants to and is running for president. The only question is whether he’ll do it out of the governor’s office or in the governor’s office.
‘The Revolutionary part of the holiday has been overlooked’: Universal Hub
thinks the history behind Patriot’s Day is getting overlooked – and I couldn’t agree more. Hub Blog, who used to march as a youngster to Concord from Sudbury each April 19, has always been proud that the Hub Blog Dad was once a colonel
of the mighty military juggernaut known as the Sudbury Minutemen
(scroll down the colonel list to the mid-1960s). … Though perhaps too much emphasis is put on the Marathon, Sox game and roof-deck parties on Patriot’s Day, it still remains a distinctly quaint local tradition, sort of like the Beanpot Tournament. It should also be unofficially known as Pancake Day, considering all the church and Lions Club pancake breakfasts around eastern Massachusetts. …
'No looking back': Charlie Weis
has already cobbled together a stellar coaching staff at Notre Dame and given copies of the Pats' offensive play-book to players. ... ‘There’s nothing like it’:
I could commit heresy by suggesting yesterday's pregame ceremonies were a bit overdone, so I won't. ... Yet there sure were a lot of great moments, including the return of Derek Lowe
and Dave Roberts and Ellis Burks.
A new contest: Who's your favorite ex-Red Sox from 2004? Mine: Roberts, though we now know we'll miss Pedro the most on the field.
‘2 minutes to midnight’:
Reader No. 1 is more of a warmonger than me! Reader No. 1:
“WEEI runs a Monday morning baseball show with Steve Buckley, Sean McDonough and Greg Dickerson and Dickerson pointed out the Bailey/Buckley booboo
at length today. I understand the glass-house typo defense. But isn't it amazing how a typo puts up the radar? If the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists
were covering Boston's newspaper war, I'd say we're 2 minutes to midnight...
“Speaking of 2 minutes to midnight, when can we push the panic button on David Wells
and Theo's new bullpen
? Of course, as other GMs have noted, Theo is quick to move on mistakes, and this wouldn't be the first time he has had to overhaul the bullpen (lest we forget Closer-By-Committee, Chad Fox, BK Kim -- who we all forget WAS good for a short while in 2003). Of course, the Sox starting rotation has been fairly stable over the past 2 years, giving elbow room (sic) to fix things, and that's far from the case right now... off to the ballgame.”
Speaking of newspapers and the Sox, Reader No. 1 adds:
“More shocking was Dan Shaughnessy slipping this deeply confessional little pitch
over the inside corner on Thursday morning, ‘Red Sox-Yankees has evolved into the very best drama in all of sports and with that comes no shortage of themes, which are often silly or contrived (remember ‘The Curse of the Bambino’?)’. … ‘Silly or contrived but career-making’ would be more appropriate. Play ball!”Hub Blog’s response
–- After all these years, all we get is a dismissive six-word parenthetical clause from the guy who wrote an entire book, countless columns and hundreds of thousands of words about the Curse? No grand-finale extraterrestrial explanation for the Curse's demise? Life isn't fair.
A pot of coffee and some good reading:
I’m all Poped out. So I was kind of glad to see the Sunday reading inventory was somewhat eclectic this morning. Here are a few stories that caught my attention and I enjoyed:‘The Chinese know where they need to go’
-- Sure the Pentagon might be hyping the threat. But China is clearly a rising military power -- with the apparent help of, sadly, Israel. Next in line to sell arms that might one day could be used against Americans: Europe. ...
Spamalot, Part II
-- Boston’s MFA attracts men with cars. Now Broadway attracts men with Monty Python. ... Spamalot is about the only show that I dearly want to see.
‘You can't imagine the ordeal’
-- Hub Blog has many reoccurring fears, among them getting eaten by a shark lurking at the bottom of Lake Sunapee. But having one’s identification stolen is not an irrational fear.‘Scooped a scoop’
-- Though there’s clearly bias in every-day journalism, a lot of blogger criticism of the media puts too much emphasis on ideological bias and not enough on Darwinian instincts to shine and rule, as Dan Okrent notes.
‘Curiously dumbstruck when dealing with Mr. Mugabe's ...’
-- Africa is much farther along the democratic path than it gets credit for. But, in some countries, democracy is not going to take hold until, ironically, the old warriors who fought undemocratic colonialism pass into history.
‘A Father’s Ordeal’
-- I don’t know if Pete was writing about himself or posting something someone else wrote (the different post font and third-person confuse) but it’s still a heart-breaking post about a young teen who gets her heart broken for the first time.Update
-- Pete, who has a second installment
of the post, says that, yes, he's talking about himself, even though he writes it in the third person. I kind of figured that, but wasn't quite sure.
“This Way to Latest Globe Fiasco ===>”:
The Herald must have a guardian angel somewhere. Or at least a frequently absent one that comes around every now and then -- and just in the nick of time. Reader No. 1 sure got my attention with an email slugged ‘This Way to Latest Globe Fiasco ===>’ and, presto, this link
and then this link
. ... Universal Hub
admirably caught the connection between the self-inflicted, cancel-each-other-out blunders by the two papers. File incidents under: Friendly fire. ... And, yes, John
, the Boring MiniGlobe did splash the Chieppo story across its front page, as Left Center Left
noted. Didn’t a certain publisher claim that the Metro takeover had nothing to do with the Herald and that it was all about serving the readers and advertisers? ... (I think I’m going to go for the Israeli Army Kevlar Infantry Helmet
.--ed. Good choice. ...Adam also admirably has been keeping the peace. Shouldn’t you respond in kind?
--ed. Yes, I shall: I am a biased, warmongering Heraldite.)
‘Everything blows to the curb’:
The city is allegedly upping the ante on those refusing to move their cars for street cleanings (stories here
). ... But didn’t they always have the power to tow cars? Isn’t part of the problem the fact the city doesn’t have enough tow trucks to enforce this threat? Part of me still thinks a different type of TOW
is needed. ... Wouldn't simple fines of $100 do the trick? Maybe they don't want to spend the money to change the wording on all those Move Your Damn Car signs. ...
‘Bumping into some limits’:
How bad are the Democrats? They can’t make inroads despite the Republicans hitting the wall, as David Brooks makes clear.
... Nice line: “They (voters) don't want leaders whose instinct is always to go out wildly on the attack.” Republicans tend to forget that the overwhelming issue of the 2004 campaign was the war, not Social Security reform or Right to Die issues. ...
... Hub Blog didn’t know that the Schiavo-memo scandal (if you can call it that) had a Boston angle. Andrew Sullivan
reports the memo writer has an "undergraduate degree from Salem State College in his native Massachusetts and a law degree from New England School of Law." ... We’re at the center of power again!
‘Matter of principle’:
Mr. Chieppo deserved to be shown the door yesterday.
So now maybe the Globe can start concentrating on its own conflicts of ... (Zip it.
--ed. But ... When a problem comes along, you must zip it.
--ed. But ... Zip!
--ed. But ... Zippity-doo-dah, zippity day!
OK, I’m not going to prevail on that truce-breaking tack. So let us send Reader No. 1 out on the flank:
“If the Herald had just hired Chieppo to do a blog instead of Op-Eds
, he wouldn't be a journalist
so it would be OK with the Globe.
“I look forward to a statement from the Globe that as a matter of principle and in recognition of issues raised by Chieppo, the paper will stop publishing op-eds from all state employees
. Wait, don't do that... then the Globe will have to publish more principled op-eds from Harvard University employees
to make up the gap!!!”
(Hmmmm. This is getting strategically very interesting.
--ed. My dear mental editor pest, I do believe you have a warmonger gene in you. ... I’m new to this newspaper-war thing. I’m from LA, a one-newspaper town.
--ed. ... That’s OK, just go out and buy a British WW II pith helmet
and report for duty next week. I also recommend the British MK 6 helmet with cover. The Israeli Army Kevlar Infantry Helmet
is also quite effective and cool looking. Though I hate to admit it, the French F1 Steel Helmet w/Camo Cover is also snazzy looking. Chicks love it. ... Oooooooo. Thanks for the recommendations, Hub Blog.
--ed. ... No problem. And one of these days I’m going to expound on how I think newspapers in general are being run by generals fighting the last war. ... You mean the Old Media’s Desperate Race to the Circulation and Viewership Bottom Theory?
--ed. Shhhh. Don’t give away war secrets. ... My lips are sealed.
It’s all pope all day!:
Granted, Hub Blog’s views of the church these days lean toward the secular Cafeteria Catholic variety. But here are some stories that I found interesting on the day of the Pope’s funeral: ‘Just when the healing was beginning’
-- Yep, Bernie himself is slated to preside over today’s mass in Rome. ... ‘An important way to represent the church at Boston’
-- Archbishop Sean O'Malley, Bernie’s pooper scooper in Boston, hopefully has a handy broom and shovel ready ... ‘The ground is trembling around the Catholic Church’
-- For some reason, I can’t read enough about Brazil these days, one of the world’s most fascinating countries and where the church is struggling. ‘France's powerful Freemasons’
-- Masons are still powerful in France? It’s an unfathomable country at times. ... ‘The man knows how to build a crowd’
-- I miss Bill Clinton. ... Spare me the anti-Clinton/Bush screeds. Both Clinton and the Bush family have shown remarkable class by setting aside differences and acting in the best interests of their country and consciences. I know of more than a few Blue and Red state fanatics who could learn from their example. ...
‘Hall of Mirrors’: Monsieur Daley
points to an interesting story in a ‘certain newspaper’
that brings up the issue of part-time paid journalists ‘wearing two hats’ and writing about the subjects they ... (Stop it! The truce has been holding!
--ed. But ... Stop it! You’ve been linking to each other again. And it’s the pope’s funeral today.
--ed. OK, for Papa, I’ll refrain. Good Hub Blog.
--ed.) ‘It’s a Harmonic Convergence’:
Even though they fight like cats and dogs, both the Globe and Herald should hope to keep this a two-newspaper town. Why? Because without natural competitive checks and balances, Boston might get ... Mickey Kaus!
God, he’s a one-man wrecking crew for the LA Times. ... Mickey on a ‘harmonic convergence’ fight between GM and the Times: “Neil's column was a bit of a cheap stunt--it's hard for any outsider to say who is responsible for sloth and error in the attempted turnaround of a giant bureaucracy like GM, just as it's hard for an outsider to say who's responsible for the agonizingly inadequate attempted turnaround of the huge bureaucracy of the L.A. Times!”
Beacon Hill gets a new Legal Sea Foods.
… Bet they’ll build out the restaurant faster than they’ll finish what's going to be a four-year-old Cambridge Street project
that was supposed to be completed two years ago.
Brighton Reader sends in a 'conclave madness'
scorecard. ... I'm betting on the African-Asians. But never underestimate the Italians.
‘If you honk the horn one more time ...’:
An overdue blog has sprouted, Boston Crazy Driving
(via Universal Hub
). ... Hub Blog used to think Boston drivers were lovably obnoxious. Now I think we’re just obnoxious. My own pet peeve has been the dreaded Indignant Honker, the one who angrily lays on the horn for five seconds if someone hesitates at a just-turned green light for a second too long, producing an anger-to-mistake ratio of 5-1. ... Yesterday, while walking down trash-strewn Anderson Street, I witnessed a woman in a SUV honking away at a stopped truck, which had stopped because, well, a cop was telling the trucker to stop. She couldn’t see and didn’t know about the cop. But, god damn it, she was indignant. ... Honk, honk, honk. ... Pause. ... HONK, HONK, HONK!!! ... Pause. Etc., etc. etc. ... Finally, the truck driver got out of the cab seething: ‘If you honk that horn one more time, lady!’ She looked indignant that he was indignant. But she didn’t honk again. Hub Blog gave her a good scowl as I walked by, showing my moral support for the beefy Teamster.
‘I’ll miss Dan Kennedy (but don’t quote me)’: Greg Gatlin
on Dan Kennedy stepping down as the Phoenix media critic. ... I’ve already urged Dan to please please please keep a blog. ... Oh my God! The newspaper wars have spilled into Dan’s comment section
, with my Herald boss duking it out with the oh-so-brave anonymous critics! ... Don’t you love it? The Herald-Globe rivalry often reminds me of the sprawling fight scene at the end of Blazing Saddles, disrupting everything and anything in its path -- weddings, bar mitzvahs, poetry readings, soccer games, touching good-bye comment sections, etc.
‘Put down the bottle, fellow Sox fans’:
Reader No. 1 seems to agree with me that it’s not time to panic about panicky people who are talking about how it’s not time to panic after two games:
“Put down the bottle, fellow Sox fans, and have a laugh at this great parody site (tip from Boston Sports Media
), particularly these wonderful Yankee rips (here
“WEEI's Audio Vault
appears a few days behind on Whiner Lines ... too bad, there was a palpable sense of agonized relief yesterday afternoon as people called in to rip Edgar Renteria et al after the tough loss. Oh well, at least Dan Shaughnessy left Harry Frazee out of today's column.
-- Er, maybe it is time to panic.Update II
Pete has a couple posts today on legislative gerrymandering (here
). … Reader No. 1 and I have gone back and forth on this. Hub Blog has insisted that no true legislative and government reform is possible without changing the current districts. Reader No. 1 says voters putting pork ahead of reform is the real problem. But they’re really symbiotic arguments. … Why would you vote for someone (such as a Republican or Independent) knowing he or she won’t have any power if elected? 'A Beauty on Beacon Street':
Forget my rant yesterday. It's spring. Time for admiring beauty where there's beauty -- and it's definitely not in the gutters of Anderson Street. Carpundit
, bless his soul, found beauty and love on Beacon Street. ...
Four weeks, that's it:
It's been said before and will be said again, but there's something to be said about a four-week election campaign.
Good luck to Tony Blair. ...
God d@mn f*-^g ass%$(@s!:
I waited all winter for the street sweepers to get out and clean up last December’s trash, January’s leftover X-Mas tree decorations, February’s sand and March’s blue plastic newspaper wrappers -- and what happens? Two-thirds of the God d@mn f*-^g ass%$(@ car owners on my street didn’t move their autos this morning for the first street cleaning in months. … Forget about ticketing and towing the cars. Blast ‘em to kingdom come with TOW anti-tank missiles and then bill ‘em for the clean up.Update
– Highly recommend: the improved ‘TOW 2’
-- OK, maybe I was in a bad mood
and a tad too harsh yesterday. TOWs would clearly shatter innocent homeowners' windows. But I still think a punishment of a few hours of forced hard labor fixing potholes
would motive people to move their stupid cars.
Like most everyone, Hub Blog has many fond memories of Pope John Paul II, including his ‘79 visit to Boston. Along with other cynical friends, I was reduced to a pope groupie that day, chasing his car around Boston Common and yelling, ‘Papa!’ ... Even at the time I couldn’t believe I was doing it. ... The other things I remember were the masses he gave in Poland, as Communist troops goose-stepped about to try to disrupt services, and his famous trip to Nicaragua, as Sandinista supporters tried to drown out his sermon, invoking his memorable command, ‘Silence!’ And there was silence. The Marxist Sandinistas never recovered. Here was a guy who literally lived and struggled under the boots of history’s greatest tyrants -- Adolph Hitler and Josef Stalin -- and little Daniel Ortega thought he could intimidate John Paul II? ...
But most stories don’t have happy endings. Locally, the sexual abuse scandal damaged the church’s -- and John Paul’s -- reputation. The pain
is still there. One could also throw in his failure to progressively address the role of women in the church, though I never thought (nor do now) that the church is capable of making that logical jump within our lifetime. So helping to take down totalitarianism will just have to do as his major historical achievement. I’ll take it. ... Update
-- Chrisopher Hitchens
has more on the Boston and Cardinal Law angle (via Instapundit
). ... ‘Believability’:
Though I disagree with some of what she says, Eileen
makes the salient point about Mitt these days: ‘believability.’ Or lack thereof. It’s just hard to view anything Mitt does without seeing it through the prism of his ambitions. One can obviously express anti-majority views in the stem-cell debate (such as Reader No. 1 below) and not be a right-wing ‘screamer.’ But Mitt has clearly brought upon himself a good dose of cynicism that, well, in this case, brings up the question of believability, not to mention sincerity. ...
‘Someone has to say something about Harvard’s takeover ...’:
Reader No. 1, a Tufts grad, takes on not one but two Harvardites. So the odds are even:
“Someone has to say something about Harvard's takeover of the Globe and hijacking of public debate on important issues, eg see yesterday's op-ed page. Professor Sandel
takes a very long time to elegantly knock down an obvious contradiction in Mitt Romney's argument. As a public policy matter, and pragmatically (abortion clinics and fertility clinics), the issue over the sanctity of the embryo was settled a long time ago.
“But Professor Sandel spends no time on the 'Brave New World' argument about how embryonic cells will be handled down the road, other than in effect to say, ‘Trust us, we're intelligent enough to solve the problems.’ So, let us discuss them, and be explicit about what we will and will not permit, rather than dribble out the clock.
has many sensible things to say on many topics. And he is savvy enough to know our society's essential pragmatic nature will accept this research if it holds enough promise for the living (‘Recent history suggests that human embryonic stem cell research, once it becomes more prevalent, will become almost universally accepted.’) But he surely knows this work is a lot different than kidney transplants. And it's morally different than the birth of Louise Brown. Here's why (and here's why Romney's distinction on using embryos that would have been discarded WAS a valid distinction on the ‘Brave New World’ front).
“Harvard grad Ted Kennedy was quoted a few weeks back to the effect that embryonic stem cell research did not mean babies would be grown in test tubes. That's precisely the problem. Embryos created in fertility clinics are created with the intention that some day, they may become living human beings. They are not created -- at least not to this point in time -- with the intention that they would be harvested as spare genetic parts. I don't know if Larry Summer wrote the headline on his Op-Ed ‘Give Scientists the Tools They Need’ - I hope not. Whoever did write it has provided horrific validation of the ‘Brave New World’ fear. A human embryo is not a tool!
(another Harvard man, incidentally) made this distinction better than anyone else I have seen a few weeks back. The moral seriousness of this topic calls for another round of federal meddling.”
‘Sprechen wir Anglodeutsch?’
: The CSM’s Ruth Walker
sounds the alarm about the spreading ‘compounding-disease.’ ... She links to a Mark Twain essay -- ‘The Awful German Language’
-- that’s so funny I thought it was an April Fool's joke. But it’s the real thing. Twain on the German language:
“One is washed about in it, hither and thither, in the most helpless way; and when at last he thinks he has captured a rule which offers firm ground to take a rest on amid the general rage and turmoil of the ten parts of speech, he turns over the page and reads, ‘Let the pupil make careful note of the following exceptions.’ He runs his eye down and finds that there are more exceptions to the rule than instances of it. So overboard he goes again ...”
“In German, a young lady has no sex, while a turnip has. Think what overwrought reverence that shows for the turnip, and what callous disrespect for the girl. See how it looks in print -- I translate this from a conversation in one of the best of the German Sunday-school books:
Wilhelm, where is the turnip? Wilhelm
She has gone to the kitchen. Gretchen
Where is the accomplished and beautiful English maiden? Wilhelm
It has gone to the opera.’ ”
And don’t miss Twain’s ‘The Tale of the Fishwife and Its Sad Fate.’
‘It's not that crazy …’: Tom Keane
thinks the proposed city toll zone is A.) a bad idea and B.) won’t work but C.) at least worth a quick debate. ...