Quick rant

I find it a little distressing that news organizations are asking people to "post their own photos" of the crane that collapsed in NYC.  Aren't there enough photos already?  What could be accomplished by more voyeurism?  I could understand if more photos would add to an understanding of the extent of the tragedy or elucidate more of what caused it.  But there are enough photos of this particular incident without some neighbors showing off how they sat there and gawked.  Then they are calling the people who post these photos "citizen journalists."  Journalists find out things; don't just take and post 100 shots of a tragedy without adding to public understanding in some way.  

In case you're interested

Book publishing stats just came out (how many books are published per year, etc.)

Notable parts of this release:

"Based on preliminary figures from U.S. publishers, Bowker is projecting that U.S. title output in 2007 increased slightly to 276,649 new titles and editions, up from the 274,416 that were published in 2006."

[This is all books (textbooks etc.) published in a year. It does not include "on demand" self-published books.]

"There were 50,071 new fiction titles introduced in the U.S. last year, up 17% from 2006, and the number of new titles in the category in 2007 was almost twice what it was as recently as 2002." 

"Similarly, there was a 19% rise in new literature books last year to 9,796, which followed a 31% increase in new literature titles in 2006."

"Adult fiction continues to be a reliable category in the U.S. book publishing industry and one of the niches that a number of publishers have counted on through the peaks and valleys of the past several years," said Gallagher. "On the other hand, it's noteworthy that juvenile title output, which makes up more than one out of every 10 new books introduced into the U.S. market, was down again slightly last year and has now seen steady erosion in each of the last three years since its Harry Potter-influenced peak in 2004."

Okay, so if you've got a novel, it could be one of the 50,071 titles published next year.  However, I guess that includes romances and paperbacks...so I'm not sure which chunk of that number includes regular mainstream fiction.  And what does the separate "9,796 literature books" mean?  New editions of The Sound and the Fury?  Or regular (non-genre) adult fiction?  I'm not sure.  In any case, there's room for new books, but even though the numbers may seem like a lot, they're not.  Because there probably are five zillion people working on books right now...


It's blinding!!

The first night of "Manhattanhenge," when the setting sun aligns with the street grid of Manhattan, was tonight.  (These were taken at 14th Street and Sixth Ave.)

The view probably will be better tomorrow IF the weather cooperates - be in NYC from around 7:30-8:15 and look west.


Why your rejection slips should be light this week

Most of the literary bigwigs are either already in L.A. or preparing to go to L.A. for:

Last year I got some nice souvenirs when I went to the one in New York.

Anyway, if you have a manuscript sitting on an editor's desk, don't expect to hear anything this week!
Tomorrow, tomorrrrrroooowww...

Tomorrow is a better day to view the Manhattan Solstice than Friday, because there might be clouds or storms on Friday evening, according to Joe Schumacher over at Gothamist.


Good news, everyone!

Manhattanhenge, or the Manhattan Solstice, takes place this Thursday and Friday.  It's when the sun perfectly sets with the grid of NYC streets, and has a cool orange effect.  Check out this link!!

Rap you need

Any men who are dating should watch this m-----f----- video, yo!



It's always interesting to listen to people's conversations at baseball games.  At the Iron Pigs game, some people behind me were saying they were going to see a concert involving the bands Great White and Firehouse.  I thought they were joking at first.  I never heard of Firehouse, but I knew of Great White, and I thought they were just lying that they would be playing with a band called Firehouse.  It seems awful strange.
Hog wild

Last night, we went to Allentown, Pa. to watch a game of the minor league Iron Pigs.  According to the Encyclopedia Britannica, "Pig iron is a crude form of cast iron poured from the blast furnace."  Anyway, it's a clever name for the team in that former industrial town.  Their mascots are "Ferrous" and "FeFe."

It was a 90-minute drive (all on highways w/no traffic), and that area of Pa., just over the Jersey border, is a neat place to visit.

I had to try the only real specialty they had in the ballpark:  the "Big Porker" sandwich, with shredded pork on a roll.  They also had pork on nachos, which didn't draw me.

We enjoyed the fireworks after.  

Coca Cola stadium

Woman wearing a "pig nose" ($3 in gift shop)

"pork nachos"


Hubby is in shock!!!

....over what a human life is worth.  

This morning, he happened to see these two stories, in this order, on CNN.  He believes this should be blogged, and is still aghast at this.

See for yourself:

I ask you:  Which is worse??


A friend responded that those little dogs can be pretty vicious.  Yeah, I know, and I guess that's probably what the poster is trying to say - even an innocent-looking dog can bite.  But maybe they shouldn't have chosen the sweetest expressions possible.

To follow up on the other part of my post, the one about Emily Gould's upcoming NYT Magazine article cover, she is getting all sorts of hate comments about it on her own blog, EmilyMagazine.com, at Gawker, and there were like 700 at the Times Magazine so they closed comments!  Some are supportive, too (including from older men who find her hotttt).  Anyway, get ready for more onslaught when it hits the streets on Sun.


Beware of attack Chihuahua

This poster has been hanging in my local post office all month in honor of Dog Bite Prevention Week, which just ended.

It always gives me a little laugh.  Look at the dogs they choose to use to illustrate this.  In the upper left, a shiny-eyed Weiner dog that probably is no higher than the mainman's shoe.  Bad weinerdog!!  Look at the actual photo of the very guilty-looking weinerdog.  Definitely has the makings of a Stephen King novel.

Also, may I direct you to the dog to its right.  A vicious, angry terrier.   It practically has a ribbon in its hair.

Check out the beagle on the left, and then down below in the middle, that nasty, nasty pug with the googly eyes and tongue lolling out.

I'm sooo scared!

Women who blog too much

If you have time to kill, read this young former Gawker editor's tale of how she gave away too much on her blog and eventually realized that it's not a good idea to put your whole private life on the internet.  Yes, I do agree.  This is appearing in the Sunday Times, but it's already on the internet and has some people posting nasty comments about her.

Have a great weekend, everyone!

(Yes, I know I am shirking my duty to write something.  Well, I have other things to tend to.  But have a good one.)


True colors

HUBBY: The sun is out.
ME: Maybe there'll be a rainbow.
HUBBY: You're such a girl.

Why do you have to be a girl to appreciate things that are beautiful?

I think men would appreciate rainbows more if they weren't so darn afraid of their manhood being questioned!
Clarification: Hubby points out that he does appreciate the beauty of rainbows, and he was only saying that it was a "girly" thing for me to say that there'll might a rainbow right after he said the sun was coming out after a rainy day.


Rutt's Hut

My Hubby is turning into quite the hot dog connosseur.  When he saw Rutt's Hut profiled on the Travel Channel a few weeks ago, he had to go.

This establishment opened in 1923 and serves deep-fried dogs. He ate three and pronounced himself "satisfied."

There were a lot of other tasty delights on the menu, and at inexpensive prices.  There is plenty of space inside, and families were sitting down to enjoy their meal.  As opposed to the sit-down dining area, the bar area was sort of an old-man place (as the photo below reveals.)

I simply ordered a Greek Salad. Hey, maybe I'm a party pooper, but other people must order them too, otherwise they wouldn't be on the menu, ok??

A while ago

A while ago, a reader from a nearby town sent me an e-mail on how to fix my phone.  I promised that in return, I'd link to his blog.  Here is Snake Oil Sam's quite interesting blog.  Political opinions expressed here are all Sam's own!


Catching up

Long time, no bloggin'. How am I going to keep my 32 remaining readers (that's the highest it ever gets on the counter) if I don't blog at least twice a month?

Let's see. What is there to say...


Today's theme song should be "The sun'll come out tomorrow" from Annie. And speaking of Annie, here's a very clever scene (two entries down), posted on my friend's blog. Look for the "billiard ball" heading.


Hubby and I (and friends) saw the Mets play last weekend. They won!! Yeah! It got cold toward the end of the game, and I paid $7 for "vegetarian chili." It really hit the spot. Okay, it was just beans in sauce, but it was a good portion. Highly recommended if you want something healthier than a shriveled hot dog.

If this keeps up, we may just go to another game next month!

You know it's a recession when...

Tuesday, I came into my office and found an umbrella on my floor. I realized that a job applicant had left it the day before. She must really want me to call her back in for a second interview!

I thought you're only supposed to use that "leave something behind so they have to call you" trick for dating, not job interviews. Definitely some sort of recessionary tactic.

At least she didn't leave a bra.


My college reunion is tomorrow (not saying which year. Boy, I'm old). Every time I thought about going, I felt like I was forcing myself. I realized I didn't want to trek down there all that much.

I still have memories of loneliness whenever I go back there, of just studying in my room. It's not like it reminds me of great things. The main reason I wanted to go was to see what people look like now - older, hairless, toothless, etc. (OK, probably not toothless.) The main people I wanted to see were actually at my wedding last year, and none of them are going to the reunion either (they have similar feelings to what I had).

Plus, there are no events this weekend that interested me. Usually, they do pretty cool panels on politics, writing, etc. None of them interested me this year. There's a party Friday night for my class, and Friday doesn't work for me, and I don't really want to go to a boozefest anyhow. Finally, parking was going to suuuuck. My hubby has seen the campus already when we went for football games, and I enjoyed those visits more.

I decided that curiosity about gossip wasn't enough of a reason to go. There were a few things that would have been neat: Introducing the Hubby to people who haven't met him; seeing people faint because I have short hair now. But I did some of that at the wedding already, and I just didn't feel like going down there.

Often, when people skip a reunion, they regret it later, wishing they had gone. Well, my college was big and not very intimate, so I don't think I'll feel I'll miss much. I went back to the fifth reunion and saw people then. And there will be a reunion of staffers from my college paper some time in 2009, and I'm curious about that one. That one might be worth attending.

Tough times

Besides the fact that these are tough recessionary times, and people are rioting around the world just to get rice and wheat, it seems like natural disasters are occurring all over the place, suddenly tearing families apart and killing many. If you have people in your life who you love, hug them and keep them close. I know that I sure will.

That's all. TGIF. Have a good weekend!


Nerds at heart

Someone pointed out to me a New York Times article that ran this weekend. In it, it mentions a singles site called "Nerds at Heart." I think my remaining single friends -- the nerdy ones, or those who love nerds -- can benefit from this site. So far, their activities are only in Chicago. But can NYC be far behind?


I got some interesting responses to yesterday's entry.

Someone e-mailed to tell me that fruit can make you fat. Yes, anything can, but if you reach for fruit instead of a cookie, you're making progress.

Someone else sent an e-mail congratulating me on the diet, and putting various words like "black and white cookie" in small type. Thanks a lot, Satan! (Actually, I have to remember to link to this person's site soon, like I promised...)

And last but not least, a third reader (Blogfan Sam, actually) asked if Jennifer A. is now a "Cougar." Well, I don't think she was really on the prowl; her publicist was. And she isn't really old enough. Nor searching only for exclusively younger men.

He also said that serious musicians would rather play music than anything else. OK, but if you sleep with someone, be kind enough to not think about rushing off to play guitar two seconds later. Show a little respect and caring!!

(I'm sure John Mayer reads this blog and will heed my words.)

Anyway, I promise my lovely hubby that we don't have to hang out in CVS again tonight. Unless I find out that, like, Joan Rivers just announced she's dating Zach Efron.


Random thoughts

Quote of the day

"Sweetie, if you want to buy the magazine, buy the magazine. Because I don't want to spend my whole evening...in CVS...okaaaaay?"
-- The Hubby, reasoning with me

He's quotable AND cuddly!


The magazine article I was reading was about Jennifer Aniston and John Mayer dating.  How did that happen?  Neither of them was in a tabloid for a week, so their publicists got together?  I'm a romantic and all, but this one makes me cynical.  Anyway, since he is nine years younger than she is, I do have to encourage that.  But I also read once that he said after he has sex with a woman, all he can think about is leaving to go play guitar.  Ewww, scummy.


Tomorrow is day my beloved doggie Meg was born (well, in 1985).  She lived until March 24, 1999.  Even though I don't try to believe dogs have all human traits, Meg WAS very emotional and sensitive and truly loved me, my brother, and mom.  One day when she was a wily puppy, she was running around, making me chase her, and I was trying to catch her so she wouldn't be hit by a car.  She kept escaping, so finally, I sat down on a log and put my hands over my eyes and pantomimed like I was crying.  She immediately ran over to me.  She thought I felt bad and wanted to comfort me.  She also loved to be hugged.   I miss my Meg!


I hesitate to comment on status of things I' m working on (or not working on), lest some agent or someone see this.  So...no books coming out in the near future.  Maybe someday.  Who knows?


Summer's coming, so I'm back to the low-fat diet where I usually shed my few extra winter pounds.  I don't care about skipping meat, so this isn't as hard for me as another diet might be.  The key is to just have things at work to munch on - carrots, yogurt, and the like.  Soon, cherries will be back in season.  Full of sugar, but still better for you than a muffin!  (Probably.)

That's all she wrote

So, all is well.  Can't complain.  And summer is coming!  Several baseball games are in my future.  


Just so I don't forget


Not trivial

The Anonymous Blogger shared his memories of trivia today. The final one at the Baggott Inn is tomorrow night.



The Hubby showed me this article about how students at some colleges (including my alma mater) are now allowed to room with a student of the opposite sex.

I think this is a bad idea, while he thinks I'm overreacting.  I just think that it will cause all sorts of problems.  What if a couple is in a relationship and one pushes the other to take the next step and become roommates, and the other is not ready?  It can put pressures on a relationship that shouldn't be there at that age.   And what if couples DO room together, and break up - that will cause a real problem.  And what if a guy and girl who are "just friends" room together, but one half of the duo really has designs on the other?  That can create some uncomfortable situations.  Also a lot of jealousy.  And what if the roomies end up drunk and decide to fool around, just because they're in the next bed, and then regret it in the morning?

Yes, maybe I am overreacting.  But I just think this adds to the pressures of school.

The Hubby believes that these kids can be trusted to be adults, and a lot of those who choose this option are friends, not couples.  Still, it sounds like a bad idea to me.

Oh, the photo of the traffic cones has nothing to do with all this, but I took it recently because I just liked the colors.  The flowers have been falling off the trees around here.