updated
Sept 11 @ 2:30pm CT
by Laurel Krahn
laurel@windowseat.org
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Word a Day


September 7 - 11
"If I define a Weblog, I'm not being true to the fluid, floating, idiosyncratic spirit of the enterprise. Definitions are boundaries, and boundaries are anathema to Webloggers. Moreover, the best Weblogs are always shifting and evolving, always on their way to being something else." --Julia Keller, Chicago Tribune

John Carman is right about the Emmys. Sigh.

* * *

Eric Milton pitches a no-hitter for the Minnesota Twins! Yay!

* * *

Homicide: Life on the Street is, when all is said and done, just a TV show. But I can't help but get a little sad that talk of returning series doesn't include Homicide, it's over and gone. Sure, Munch will still be around on the new Law & Order spin-off and the episodes still air in syndication . . . but I'll miss it. Even though the last couple of seasons were pretty bad, there were always occasional good episodes or great scenes. I'm gonna miss those guys.

Looking through some old links, I found this tribute to the show from NPR's Weekend Edition (this is a realaudio file, so you need a RealAudio player to hear it). A fine piece. Sigh.

* * *

An article about NBC's plans for the fall season and the future. Includes this telling bit:

According to Schulman [head of the media-buying firm Schulman-Advanswers N.Y.], NBC's biggest programming gamble may have been dumping "Homicide: Life on the Street," a steady performer, for the romantic-ensemble show "Cold Feet."

"I don't know that that audience is available on Friday nights," he said. "And 'Homicide' had a good core audience."

It sure did. (Though waitaminute, are they implying that Homicide didn't have it's share of young fans? They'd be wrong). It's one of the few shows that would keep me home on a Friday night or otherwise make me go out of my way to see and tape the show.

* * *

I'm pretty sure I've linked to this site before, but I was reminded of it again and it's so much fun that I'm linking to it again: The Gallery of "Misused" Quotation Marks.

* * *

A good City Pages article about online reporting in general, the relationship between print and online versions/reporters. . . and the controversy around a story that some feel was lifted from startribune.com for the next day's dead tree version of the Pioneer Press [via mediagossip].

* * *

Huh?
I've seen Zeldman's Daily Report mentioned a few places recently, as if it's a new or a very old weblog.

Huh? It's basically a "what's new" page-- has been for eons, though it used to be "New This Week". I suppose perhaps it seems weblog-like to some since Zeldman updates frequently and has his hands in so many projects . . .

None of this is to say I don't read and enjoy his pages, but I'm a bit puzzled by folks calling it a weblog. Am I missing something?

* * *

From Lileks' Backfence column . . . a possible lawsuit:

LILEKS ET AL v. STAR TRIBUNE

Plaintiff alleges that slogan "It's where you live" induced plaintiff not to show up for work for six weeks, since if the paper were where he lived, and he worked at the paper, then he need not leave the house. Plaintiff is suing for back wages, restoration of job and a new ad campaign.

(Have I mentioned that I used to work at the Star Tribune? Better yet, that I once worked many long hours on a project called "freetime"? ).

* * *

A good piece by Michael Sragow for salon about Kevin Spacey:

Expansive and ironic, Spacey is the emblematic actor of a paradoxical age. Eloquent and elemental, he represents all the men and women who face limitless sexual, emotional and professional options -- but find little wiggle-room in their careers and family life. His venal characters tend to be uncanny manipulators. His virtuous ones are soul survivors. Yet even when he takes on bourgeois roles, he veers away from the mainstream middle-class maleness of a conventional crowd-pleaser like Tom Hanks.

To be honest, Spacey is one of my all-time favorite actors. I think a lot more of American Beauty than the writer of this piece, as well-- and I'm hoping Spacey receives an Oscar-nomination for his role in it (if not an Oscar). Can't wait 'til the film opens so I can see it again.

* * *

Sarah Vowell is right on the money re Andy Richter:

His job does not seem to hold him, does not seem quite right. Which is obviously why Richter has announced he's quitting "Late Night" at the end of this television season, and why the show has shrewdly announced that there are no plans to seek his replacement -- implying that he cannot be replaced.

He can't. For Andy Richter is perhaps the first sidekick in talk show history whom it is a pure pleasure to watch.

I've loved Andy since the very first episode of Late Night; heck, I liked the show in the early days a lot more than most-- largely because of the instant chemistry between Conan and Andy . . . the bits where they'd chat at the top of the show have always been, IMHO, the strength of the show.

* * *

Help me, Obi-- oh nevermind:

Alec Guinness, who played Obi-Wan Kenobi in the original Star Wars films, says that "obsessive" fans of the movie frighten him and that he throws letters from Star Wars fans into the trash.

In an interview set to appear in the second issue of Talk Magazine, Guinness claims it was his idea to have Kenobi die, telling director George Lucas that Obi-Wan would be more poignant as a ghost. "What I didn't tell him," added the award-winning actor, "was that I just couldn't go on speaking those bloody awful, banal lines. I'd had enough of the mumbo jumbo."

* * *

It's a Super-Custody Battle! [Thanks to Michael Rawdon for the link):

DC Comics stands to lose half the rights to Superman due to documents filed in the U.S. Copyright Office by heirs of the late Superman creator Jerry Siegel . . . Under the law, Siegel's heirs have been entitled to half of the revenue from Superman starting April 16, 1999 . . .

Further, the termination means that DC Comics no longer holds the exclusive rights to produce Superman comics and related merchandise. This means that the Siegels could create their own Superman comic book or even television series or movie to compete with DC's publications and series, as the Siegels and DC now co-own the Superman copyright. However, if the Siegels were to produce their own Superman comic book or movie, they would have to pay DC Comics one-half of the revenue it generated as well.

* * *

Outstanding article about actor Steve Harris and Eugene Young, the character he plays on The Practice [via hlotlinks].

The whole article is worth reading (really). Eugene is my favorite character on the show, with good reason. I hope he wins an Emmy this year.

The character of Eugene Young also is an anomaly: a black man with a commanding presence, a law practice, a brother in prison, a son, an ex-wife, a professional integrity and an emotional inner life. Young is a rarity, not because so few men like him exist, but because so few of them exist on television or in film.

* * *

A&E TV website has been redesigned.

* * *

Harry Knowles on Love Stinks:

The highest praise I can give the movie is that Iím still... somehow, but the grace of the God of Caffeine, awake.

If you can see the movie for free... well weigh it carefully.

And I loved this line, as well:

But this film felt like the flourescent lights in JOE VS THE VOLCANO.

Speaking of movies (or should I say "movies" when referring to such a beast as Love Stinks?), you've seen The Iron Giant by now, haven't you? If not, GO TO A THEATER TODAY, darnit.

Ahem. Really. I mean it. If you don't like the movie, I'll pay for your ticket. Well, I would if I could. Ahem. Not that I think anyone would take me up on it 'cuz the movie is Really Good.

* * *

Cool! Episodes of Young Indiana Jones will be coming to home video when the remastered Indy videotapes hit the streets. I'm looking forward to the remasters and to the widescreen videotape versions of the Indy films. I won't gripe too much about the supposed retitling of Raiders of the Lost Ark (supposedly gonna be changed to Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark, which makes little sense, but hey . . . ).

* * *

Whoa, I hadn't heard that there's a new Eurythmics album coming out in October! Cool (I hope).

They're also doing a tour with proceeds going to both Amnesty International and Greenpeace.

* * *

Woohoo! The real Godzilla is back.

* * *

More re the Sioux Falls strip searches of curfew-violators.

* * *

For some reason I laughed out loud at this tidbit from this weeks issue of The Onion:

Study: 82 Percent Of Americans Want To Run Over Nathan Lane With A Tractor
PRINCETON, NJ-- According to a Gallup poll released Monday, 82 percent of Americans describe themselves as "wanting very much" to run over Broadway and film star Nathan Lane with a tractor, with 60 percent of respondents preferring that a trailer loaded with pig iron be attached to the rear of the vehicle. "These figures reflect a 12 percent rise from last year," Gallup official Tom Ross said. "That's remarkable when one considers that Mr. Lane's cancelled NBC sitcom Encore! Encore! was on the air at that time." Of the dissenting 18 percent of respondents, 11 percent wanted to bind Lane's ankles with a cable attached to the Space Shuttle, and 7 percent wished to strap him to a stone slab and force him to watch The Birdcage for 800 hours on continuous loop.

And I honestly like Nathan Lane. Well, I thought I did. Hmmm.

* * *

I also like my horoscope for the week, also from The Onion:

Cancer: (June 22--July 22)
Your cool demeanor sometimes leaves others wondering what you're really feeling. Consider using "emoticons."

* * *

St. Paul Pioneer Press slideshow of Minnesota State Fair night life.

* * *

You could be on Oprah (the show, that is).

* * *

Hi to any and all new readers . . . I hope you stick around. This page is updated (almost) daily. Typically at least one update each weekday, generally by Noon of each day. My TV Picks page is updated each day (usually by 3am Central Time). Topics drift here depending on what webpages I hit each day-- so some weeks I may seem to talk nothing but TV stuff, other weeks there's a mix of tech and Minnesota and music and books and arts and whatever strikes my fancy. Hopefully there's enough here that'll make it worth your while. Check out some previous editions if you'd like. And, of course, I love receiving feedback and suggestions of links.

* * *

Look, ma, I'm in the papers! A nifty article by Julia Keller of the Chicago Tribune about weblogs mentions this here page and quotes yours truly. She also talked to Steve Bogart (of Now This) and Jim Romenesko (of Obscure Store). I'm pretty thrilled to be in such good company (and in the company of the other sites mentioned).

Okay, some further comments: I don't think Weblogs are a Big Deal or that they'll ever replace such things as novels (good grief!). The rest of the stuff Keller wrote is pretty much on the money (and some of it is darn flattering). I think it's a little misleading (though not intentionally, I'm sure) when she says I've had windowseat.org since November 1998-- I've been weblogging since then, but I had the address windowseat.org before then. And I've had webpages online since 1993. I'm not sure how to take her description of my weblog-- is this really like a phone call with a friend? Is she implying I'm a little nuts with the psychiatrist's office remark? Seemed a little out of left field to me, but I'm far from objective and I don't take offense. Love lots of bits, including the one quoted at the top of this page.

* * *

Outstanding piece by Matthew Gilbert for Boston Globe Magazine, on Shame-Free TV. Whether you watch very little TV or a lot, you gotta read this (the whole thing, darnit!). Excellent. Fabulous. Go read it already. [via mediagossip]

Many people, it seems, can only admit their strong feelings about our mass medium after a neat little face-saving preface, a disclaimer that protects the speaker from looking too much like everyone else. They don't want to perceive themselves as TV watchers, even though, as Americans, they are TV watchers almost by definition.

* * *

Joyce Maynard article about (and interview with) Lyle Lovett. Truly excellent (but then Lovett is one of my absolute favorite songwriters/performers so any lengthy article is likely to interest me).

"I'm very lucky," he says again. "I get to earn a living doing what I love. The record company never interferes with what I want to do. I like my audience. I always feel when up on stage performing that I could enjoy having a cup of coffee with any one of them."

* * *

Oh-oh, a TeeVee contributor discovers slash fiction and a bunch o' other fanfic:

But then -- oh, dear Lord, then -- I made a fateful decision that I will ever regard as a turning point in what I laughingly consider my life: I clicked on a link that said "Fan Fiction."

* * *

What the--?:

Teen-agers who violate Sioux Falls' 11 p.m. curfew law are routinely handcuffed, strip searched and questioned about their religious affiliation and how often they go to church.

To save officers time on the street, police take nearly all curfew violators to the Minnehaha County Juvenile Detention Center where they are strip searched -- whether they stole a car or stayed out too late.

Now I always knew Sioux Falls had rather, um, strident curfew laws. But this is outrageous . . .

* * *

Sioux Falls Cam.

You know, I lived in Sioux Falls, South Dakota for years before I ever actually visited the Falls.

* * *

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This page created and maintained by Laurel Krahn who can be reached via email to laurel@windowseat.org. If you'd like to email or snail mail Laurel cool stuff (for this weblog or not), she'd love that.

Copyright ©1999 Laurel Krahn unless otherwise noted. May not be redistributed without permission.