A couple of hours ago, I ordered a salad for lunch and found that it was free, since I'd acquired six stamps on my "salad card" at Cafe 34. Yes, this is the most exciting thing that's happened to me so far today.
(I've always said that Ms. Love is the Yoko Ono of the new millennium...but actually, she's way more off-the-rails than Yoko ever was.)
A tip, Courtney: Maybe if you quit ODing, getting arrested, breaking into houses, screaming obscenities at people, and generally having these "little crises", your daughter might "pitch in" a little more.
I feel for the poor kid...that's no way to grow up.
Concorde's last flight has taken off, and I'm not on board. Sigh. I always wanted to fly Concorde at some point in my life. It seemed like it was the perfect intersection of aesthetics (that shape!) and geekery (that speed!)
ADDENDUM: New York may be getting its own Concorde. Preliminary reports indicate that a Concode (G-BOAD) will fly to New York on Monday, October 27. Eventually, it'll become part of the USS Intrepid Sea/Air/Space Museum.
This morning I picked up a copy of am New York to read on the train. AM-NY is, for those lucky enough not to have run across the red boxes sprouting like mushrooms after a spring rain, the new free tabloid "newspaper" aimed at commuters that was started a week ago by Tribune. (I assume the twocompetingChicago papers that aim for a similar young-commuter niche must be doing well enough for Tribune to want to expand into the New York market.)
So: What did I think of it? It's not as horrible as I figured it'd be, but it's dumb. It's clearly aimed at people who don't make newspapers a habit, and I see no reason that this new publication will change that behavior one bit. For starters, it's dull. All the stories are short. There's no depth, no passion, no sensibility or even identifiable point of view, no sense of what's going on in this exciting and complex city in which we live. In short, there's no reason to read the thing. (Except that it does handle nicely in the subway, something at which the big tabloids don't always succeed. But if I want to read something engaging on the train that doesn't flop all over the place, that wish is more than adequately fulfilled by the New Yorker or the Atlantic Monthly.) The stories are recycled -- badly -- from other Tribune papers, for the most part. The news judgment is odd; is there a human editor putting this stuff together? The editing and story choice remind me of advertising campaigns designed to appeal to Generation X...you know, the ones that invariably (and laughably) miss the boat. Yes, they're fluffy. But even fluff can be well-written and presented with style. (See: Movieline, or EW on a good week.) Even USA Today (aka "McNews") is better than this paper, and that's saying something.
You know, if they wanted to make this newspaper capture the attention of commuters or Gen Y or whatever they're going for here, it wouldn't be that hard. Pick out some good writers -- hint: there are lots of great bloggers out there; I can give you a list -- and make them into columnists. Give me a good, meaty mix of interesting opinion. The next Jimmy Breslin could come out of something like this. Do what Jeff Jarvis suggests, and concatenate New York media in all its messy glory into an easily-read digest. Hire good, hungry, reporters...I know it's a free paper, but c'mon Tribune, you can afford it. Set 'em to work on digging up good stories -- they're out there, just not in AM-NY at the moment.
Also, shouldn't a paper aimed at the Internet user have some sort of online presence? (That page going nowhere isn't an accident. Tribune owns that domain, but hasn't done a damn thing with it.)
Also: Go back and read what Jarvis said about creating a product to fit a demographic niche, and why it doesn't often work.
It boggles my mind that Bush's announcement that he doesn't read newspapers (or otherwise consume news) didn't get more play. Michael Kinsley of Slate points out that Bush's twin stances of: 1.) trusting Karl Rove and Andy Card for the news, along with 2.) disdain for "the media" filtering the message you're trying to spread to the masses, don't quite play well together. Poor, poor President. It's so tough for the President of the United States to get his message across. However do people without press conferences, prime-time speeches, and spokesmen ever seem to manage?