The most entertaining comment thread so far this year..

…can be found here: Added Bonus: Irregardless what you think conversate is a word. Ta-Nehisi Coates has, for a couple of days now, posted about the word “conversate.” He recounts his conversation with Jesse Sheidlower, author of The F Word and Editor At Large for the Oxford English Dictionary. Ta-Nehisi: So is conversate a word? […]

The woman in the 10-gallon hat

The woman in the 10-gallon hat

Who is this woman in the 10-gallon hat? My great aunt Doris. I’ve more fun photos of her (posing as that western gal for her fellow eastern art school students! standing on horses!) in a post I wrote about learning about the history of Billings, Montana, while reading letters in the attic sent from Billings […]

Cold Women, kept safe

A good story. “The tide! The tide will take care of you and your girls!” [via TNH’s Particles]

All things being Equator

My friend Lilli Cloud wrote an article that’s been published in the Dallas Morning News about her adventures at the equator, and whether the water swirls in a different direction north or south of the equator or not. I blogged it at the time. I’m quoted in her article; I repeat Dan Gillmor’s “your audience […]

My Madeleine L’Engle Story

I met Madeleine L’Engle when she came through Pasadena on a book tour some time back. The newly released book was The Glorious Impossible, which Amazon says was published in 1990, so I guess this took place around then. She appeared at Vroman’s. I wasn’t very interested in her signature in this new book. I […]

Quirk Culture

Atlantic Magazine: Quirked Around “It’s been 20 years of beneficent, wide-eyed gazing upon the oddities of our fellow man.” There’s lots on This American Life, especially the TV series (which I haven’t seen).

(UPDATED)’s terrifying terms of service

I discuss the deal-breaker in’s terms of service at Family Oral History Using Digital Tools. Long story short: Upside: They’re thinking way long term, that’s truly commendable. Downside: The site’s TOS says they get a minimum of 6% royalty. If you post something there and then make it into any income-generating form, the company […]

When Harry met Tony

Comparing Harry Potter and Tony Soprano. [via JD Lasica] The former books I have read. The latter TV series I have not watched. (But I did read all the spoilers, except for the ones converted to ROT-13) I’m a little concerned about the timing of this summer’s Book 7 release. It won’t be easy for […]

Catalina Fire

I’ve been hearing about the Catalina Island fire in bits and pieces today. Here on the radio. There, passing a newsstand (it’s the LA Times front page story). And now, on the blogs. I can’t explain it, but the thought of the island in flames brings me to tears. The mention of “Catalina” and “fire” […]

Kentucky Derby, Kentucky Home

Heard in car yesterday: A personal essay on Kentucky Home by Laura Lorson. Here’s how she describes Derby Pie (first I ever heard of it). “Now this is a trademarked concoction which is essentially a pecan pie with bourbon and chocolate in it. It’s just stupid good. and I make a fine one myself… which […]