Something in my eye

We watched the last of these last week, leading to a discussion of, among other things, scenes or lines or moments that "get you every time." Not a bad topic for a Monday morning, so here are 10 of mine. Feel free to agree or scoff or offer your own in comments below. 1. "Son, [Read More...]

Etymology

Warren Clements of The Globe and Mail is the latest language columnist to discover the words slacktivist and slacktivism. The Globe and Mail is based in Toronto, so it's a bit of a shame that Clements misses the local angle: that word slacktivism was coined by a native son — by Dwight Ozard of London, [Read More...]

20 years ago

Rolling over demonstrators with tanks works, for a little while. But not forever. Some day — maybe within the next 20 years, maybe longer, but some day for sure — this picture will hang where pictures of Chairman Mao hang today. And some day, there will be a statue, life-size and bronze, on or near [Read More...]

No pie needed

This is just to say thank you for the conversation in the previous thread. I forgot to do what I usually do following a post that mentions abortion, which is to provide a second open-thread post about pie or baseball or Buffy or some other relatively safe topic as a kind of shelter for those [Read More...]

2037

I wouldn't want to have to write a story set in 2037. That's 28 years from now — 28 years that will certainly bring about massive changes I couldn't hope to predict. Just look back 28 years. There was still a Soviet Union, an Eastern Bloc and a Cold War, but no cell phones, no [Read More...]

Empathy

Here was, to me, the most astonishing quote in the news last week, a staggering admission — a boast actually — of moral imbecility. From a Washington Post item on the resignation of Supreme Court Justice David H. Souter: "[President Barack Obama] says he wants to appoint judges who show empathy, but what does that [Read More...]

Catching up, a little

The flu came to town last week and the paper has been frantically on the story ever since. At any journalism outfit, stories like this will highlight the tension between those trying to figure out what readers need and those trying to figure out what readers want (as in what it is that makes readers [Read More...]