Sunday, April 23, 2006

Clive Thompson is a Robot

I have nothing but praise for Clive Thompson.


The man is simply not human. Read this brand new profile of him and try not to curse your useless, non-overclocked brain.

Monday, April 17, 2006

Some C.R.A.Z.Y. Class Analysis

My favourite part of C.R.A.Z.Y. (which I watched Saturday evening) was the fact that a family with five children could own a house, a car, and various other amenities all on a working class salary. There was even a reference to the husband and wife having a savings account.

Now that’s crazy. Perhaps the 70s weren’t so horrible after all. To the barricades, comrade!


Sunday, April 16, 2006

Dead (On) Stick Target

This from Dead Things on Sticks, a blog I’ve been enjoying lately:

Anyway, amidst the not-thinking-about- writing, there's the oh- God-you-haven't- started-your-taxes (April 30 is the magic day in Canada.) Then there's little other things like the paper. I had a funny thought reading the Arts Section in the Globe & Mail today. It was very unsatisfying -- it has been the last three weeks running... and it occurred to me why.

Flipping through, every article in the Globe Review is about the Establishment. The Canadian Establishment. There's Atom Egoyan. There's Don McKellar. Another profile on Bonnie Fuller -- Jesus. (Nice language for Easter, I know, but c'mon.) When I read the NY Times Arts & Leisure section on Sunday, there's always a profile of someone interesting who's unknown to me. An up-and-comer. I read The Playlist and learn about musicians I haven't heard. I read a profile of a writer I don't know. I don't know why the Times can do it, but Canada's National Newspaper can't. Maybe because they're too busy taking articles from the New York Times. Sigh.


What I enjoy the most about this blog is that although Denis is a television writer, he often offers nuggets of insight that apply equally well to fiction or non-fiction. In the above post, he talks about churn (read it for yourself), and recently he wrote about the power of finishing a project, regardless of its final outcome. That really resonated with me.

Denis also had some brilliant thoughts on the recent spate of useless CBC comedies. In summary, a well written blog, relevant to non-script writers, and finally, very nice to know that I’m not alone in my frustrations regarding the Saturday Globe. The Toronto section is usually decent (and not because I occasionally write for it), and there are sporadic bright patches elsewhere, but he really nailed the Globe, especially the part about stealing from the NYT. We get the Internet in Canada, you know. The Sunday Styles section is not a hazy mystery to us Toronto types. Reading a well-written faux-trend piece in the NYT is one thing. Reading a mangled photocopy of said trend piece two weeks later in the Globe is not the best way to start the weekend.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Reader's Dickgest

So I'm standing in line at Dominion, and the line never moves quickly at Dominion, so I'm looking at the cover of the new Reader's Digest. And it's the humour issue. And every single person mentioned on the cover is a man.

Which is not that surprising. What is surprising is that the very top cutline of the magazine says:

Why punchlines split the sexes.

Which means issues involving humour and gender were on the magazine's radar, and yet they still managed to create a cocktail wienie cover. That's truly sad.

Saturday, April 01, 2006

Good Journalists Borrow Ideas, Great Journalists Steal Them

Jan Wong, please meet Barbara Ehrenreich, author of Nickel and Dimed. Barbara kinda beat you to the whole maid and minimum wage beat by a few years.