Thursday, November 30, 2006

Google Docs=Write Club 3.0?

After my uncontrolled rant cautioning about Google on D. Archer's site, I discover that Google Docs actually allows multiple collaborators to edit a single piece. I haven't experimented thoroughly with it yet, but if it actually tracks who changes what, it would serve my every writing need.

Thus Microsoft is rendered even more useless and the age of personal computer-based software comes to an end. My biggest issues are with privacy and the need for authors/users to be able to store/back up files locally.

On a side note, has anyone noticed that Microsoft's heavily advertised Windows Live products actually have nothing to do with Windows itself? And their Hotmail accounts are still 250mb. What is this, 1999?

It's happening again at the MBTA.

Mac Daniel reports on the disaster that has become the Blue Line fleet replacement.

This comes on the heels of the Green Line fleet replacement fiasco, the Silver Line's failure to fully exist, and the Green Line extension falling about a decade behind schedule.

This agency really has bad luck.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Boston weather forecast

5 days of gray this work at home week. The sun will be setting at 1:30 instead of 3:30.


NCBBQI travelogue
CPCCPC travelogue

Saturday, November 25, 2006


Smashing success!! Unprecedented drunkenness. Only positive interactions. CPCCPC! CPCCPC!!


Friday, November 24, 2006




From Sunset Park, Porn Capital of New York City.


Thursday, November 23, 2006

We interrupt this Flickring

to attend the Regis class of 2002-sponsored Fifth Annual Post-Thanksgiving Drive/Adventure [summary of last year's trip--my first].

Weekend of Flickr

Next 10 posts will probably relate to new Flickr sets.

Right now: Delis and C-stores.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Listening to WFUV when it's cold outside will make you feel young.

Something excellent coming out of the Bronx:

Friday, November 17, 2006

Retail-inspired violence season starts early this year

PUTNAM, Conn. --One person was shot early Friday during a confrontation in a line of people waiting outside a Wal-Mart....

Must have something to do with the sun beginning to set around 4pm. If you hear of more big box brawls, send the links my way.

And, speaking of Wal-Mart, did you hear about the outing of their Working Families for Wal-Mart flog?

Contempt for audience, contempt for audience...

Thursday, November 16, 2006



Time for a trip to When I am free of the yoke.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Great Faiths by Private Jet

I can't make this shit up.

A few weeks ago I almost trashed a USA Today article about a sweet, hip, socially conscious, obviously rich "Gen Y-er" who made sure she tutored pre-school English in India before enrolling in college (presumably to foster the development of the next generation of call center employees). I wanted to write about a trend I've been watching develop in American higher education ever since my affiliation with the "mega-industry" began seven years ago: boutique poverty.

Our rich kids travel the globe, working in the soup kitchens of Botswana, Thailand, India, Brazil. Then they post pictures of themselves doing it on the marketing database called

Yes, though black men are dropping out of high school at alarming rates, hispanic immigrants are being zoned out of their homes, and most living Vietnam vets seem to dwell under highway bridges, it's just cooler to do your community service on the other side of an ocean. Especially if it's warmer there.

You can make fun of the trendy-but-marginally-helpful rich kids all you want, but as the Tufts University Alumni Association indirectly points out, participating in boutique poverty is a behavior that spreads top-down across generations. For while the TUAA endlessly mails me postcards asking for money to supplement my $120,000 tuition, they also arrange $43,000 per person* private jet charters to historic religious sites. Giza! Kyoto! The first Memphis! Who wouldn't want to go and try to buy back part of his or her soul?

Strangely, it seems that the rich kids who are able to take their digicams along on their transoceanic volunteer trips do more social good than any executive spending a week living our of a converted 757. Is "Gen Y"'s guilt driving it away from fixing the problems it creates at home? Or are the world-savers such highly evolved superconsumers that they can only pitch in where they'll have the most fun?

These are questions you probably don't think about if you can spend $43,500 on airfare. You probably don't rely on scholarship help for your college-age heirs, either.

*All trips in the Private Jet series are, strangely, related to spirituality. Trip cost includes bottled water so you won't catch the local diseases.


Good luck getting people's money.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006


The College Point Class Conflict Pub Crawl: Fantastic idea doomed to fail or pure impossibility?

Other post-Regis post-Christmas ideas include NCBBQII and Tour de Rust Belt. Still have to write travelogue of NCBBQI!

Friday, November 10, 2006

Note to self from last weekend's hell-ride to Harwinton Fistfight Town


While photopgraphy [sic] still remains a great way to convince yourself that you're alive, it is not necessary to photograph things in order to enjoy them.

The big coincidence here is that Worcester prompted this note's creation, and I find myself returning to Worcester tonight.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

what i did today

730am taxi home from redeye from hell
9 nap
3:47pm wake up from "nap" to see sun disappearing behind neighbors' house; order chicken/eggplant calzone for breakfast/lunch/dinner.

waiting for headache to go away so i can work an honest 8 hours.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Denver is a real city.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

do it.

From a cynic and a former Bush-voting urban rube, please participate in democracy today. This is the first time I've ever felt a serious need to participate in a non-presidential election. I hope some other people do, too.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Another H------ Inn, Mountain Time Zone

Two years ago, when I started seeing America by business travel, I thought Hampton Inns were adorable and clean. "Everything is in lowercase, like my old website." Friendly reminders on how to live temporarily in a cinder box cube are everywhere, followed by a period:

road warrior.
clean your face.
clean your body.

Now, the pictures of happy travelers everywhere look like post-operative photographs of corporate lobotomy victims. I've memorized all the sentence fragments, and they're not funny. The breakfast food was once good: french toast sticks and waffles! Now, you can show up at any franchise in the U.S. and expect to see a yellow circle of cheese with bacon bits on it. Some days they call it an egg. Some days they call it a bagel.

The crowd at free hot breakfast always conists of upscale retirees and frayed businessmen with laptop bags--triple and double my age. If I ever saw a person within 5 years of my age alone in a hotel, male or female, I would marry it to prove we were real.

The lobby reeks of force-fed CNN, just like most airports. But morning CNN is about thirteen times more pornographic than midday CNN (today: GATORLAND FIRE!). Glorious Soledad and her beauty school colleagues have been painted to resemble giant blowup dolls, with plasticized, iridescent lips that scream, "I am an orifice!" If you accidentally look up at the screen, all you see is lips, lips, lips, moving in time to second-nature newscaster cadence, their changing curvature radiating bright, white studio lighting right back at ya through hundreds of thousands of miles of cables.

Now, muffins and yogurt. Since the sun has come up, I can see snow-capped mountains over the Sheraton next door. Not much after this, I'll do some kind of work and will try very hard to do it well. When you travel like this, you don't see America. You see how America works. It's not particularly nice, good, or even noble, but it's good to know.

Saturday, November 04, 2006


Thursday, November 02, 2006

Couple Things

  • VOTE. I want to be convinced that our apathy is our own problem. (This is rare optimism.)
  • I can't stand Kerry Healey. She embodies everything I hate about politics.
  • Going to CT soon.
  • Are any of our readers also working themselves to death? Why?
  • I want to live in a state where a major election issue is NOT whether to continue a state-enforced liquor store monopoly on wine sales. (What a shithole!)
That's all I can muster, for now. Stay with me.

cold, dark, wet

Suppose there is only a fixed amount of mental energy available within any given 24-hour period. How would you spend it?