Quantity and Quality

Nicholas Bate has a thought about writing the I love:

Write, write, write.

Then edit, edit, edit.

Out of quantity you can produce quality. 

November 1, 2022

Test dates

Testing dates.

Always remember you are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.” — A. A. Milne

Please work

September 15, 2022

This is Test

A book cover looks great in the margin

I’m testing the idea of taking simple word files and turning them into markdown. Mostly because I hate Markdown.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua

September 12, 2022

The Title is Bold

A book cover looks great in the margin

The cover of Ulysses

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

Some text to see how this looks

September 6, 2022

Mountaintop

Will Leitch, writing in his newsletter, had a profound paragraph about sports.

One of the best things about sports is that it gives us simplicity and clarity that real life cannot�and should not�provide us with. If we win, I’m happy. If we lose, I’m sad. But that�s not just true in the moment. When you cheer for a sports team, you make a lifelong commitment�you give a little piece of yourself to something outside of yourself that you have no control over, with no assurance whatsoever it will be treated with care, or that your investment will ever pay off. But when it happens, when it does pay off, when you get that thing you wanted so badly, it’s yours�you got it. You�re at the mountaintop. And you get to stay there.

My sports fandom consists of University of Illinois athletics and the St. Louis Cardinals. I do not have an NFL, NBA, NHL, NASCAR, or other leagues or teams that I consistently root for. However, I do enjoy watching sports in general when I don’t have a team to root for. NFL games are more fun for me to watch when I do not have a rooting interest. The same goes for MLB and NBA (although I guess I started being a fan” of the Chicago Bulls since Ayo Dosunmu started playing for them. I will admit I liked the St. Louis Rams for a couple of years, but that was when they were good, won a Super Bowl, and all that. I was the very model of a modern major fair-weather fan.

I’ve seen the Cardinals win the World Series. I’ve never seen Illinois football or basketball make it to the top of the mountain. Maybe I will. Maybe I won�t.

Still, it would be nice to get to the mountaintop. Just once.

September 3, 2022

Test

test

September 3, 2022

The Last Minute

Seth Godin:

If you do anything at the last minute that takes more than a minute, you’re not organizing your project properly.

The last minute is not a buffer zone, nor is it the moment to double-check your work.

The last minute is simply sixty seconds to enjoy and to remind yourself that you successfully planned ahead.

This needs to be a giant poster in my office.

September 2, 2022

Barney

Depending on when you grew up, Barney was either a caveman, a dinosaur, an alcoholic, or a womanizer.

September 1, 2022

Republicans in key races scrap online references to Trump, abortion

Colby Itkowitz writing in The Washington Post, outlines how Republicans in swing districts are freaking out.

At least nine Republican congressional candidates have scrubbed or amended references to Trump or abortion from their online profiles in recent months, distancing themselves from divisive subjects that some GOP strategists say are two of the biggest liabilities for the party ahead of the post-Labor Day sprint to Election Day.

The Dobbs decision has clearly energized Democratic voters to the point where they have closed the enthusiasm gap with Republicans,” said Whit Ayres, a longtime GOP pollster, referencing the Supreme Court ruling that ended the constitutional right to terminate a pregnancy. Asked whether it hurts the GOP to have Trump back in the news, Ayres replied, The best case for Republican candidates in the midterms is making the upcoming election a referendum on the Biden administration.”

The Dobbs ruling has motivated many people. Republicans have no idea what to do.

It is also possible the constant stream of Donald Trump sold our national secrets” in the news is hurting the GOP as well, but who knows?

August 31, 2022

Mikhail Gorbachev, dead at 91

Mikhail Gorbachev, whose efforts to reform the Soviet Union only hastened its political collapse, is dead at 91.

At least he tried.

August 30, 2022

J.K. Rowling’s New Book Just So Happens to Feature a Character Persecuted Over Transphobia

Cheyenne Roundtree, writing in Rolling Stone, talks about the new book by J. K. Rowling and the interesting premise it features.

Rowling’s new novel The Ink Black Heart — part of her crime thriller series Cormoran Strike and penned under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith — involves a storyline that appears to mirror Rowling’s public downfall after she continually made statements that have been widely condemned as transphobic.

She says in an interview that the premise matching her life is pure coincidence.

But despite the clear similarities to her own life, Rowling claimed to Graham Norton that it’s all just a big coincidence. I should make it really clear after some of the things that have happened the last year that this is not depicting [that],” she said.

Does she think we are stupid?

I can’t think of anyone who has been murdered for being transphobic online. On the other hand, plenty of TRANS people HAVE gotten murdered because of transphobic celebrities using their platforms to punch down.

Be better, Joanne.

August 30, 2022

Do Less

Shawn Blanc on doing less.

You don’t have to take action on every idea. You can make a decision without knowing every last detail and option. It’s okay if you don’t finish every book you start. You don’t have to respond to every email you receive. There’s no need to push every project to the max. Having breathing room — a little bit left over — is perfectly acceptable. In fact… I would argue that it’s preferred.

This is more of the anti-hustle narrative I’m seeing out in the blogosphere.

August 30, 2022

WEIRD: The Al Yankovic Story Trailer

I had no idea the Weird Al Yankovic movie was a parody of biopic movies. I mean, I should have known, but after watching the trailer… My goodness, is this going to be hilarious. It looks amazingly crazy. Rainn Wilson playing Dr. Demento is genius.

It also took several watches to realize that’s Evan Rachel Wood as Madonna.

Seriously, a biopic about an artist that makes parodies that is ALSO a parody? Perfect.

August 29, 2022

It Happened on Medium: The First 10 Years

The Medium staff looks back at the first ten years of the platform.

Medium turned 10 this month. A decade ago, we built a place on the internet for stories that aren’t too long or too short, but… that in-between length. Our simple, beautiful publishing tools gave you the freedom to focus on your words, and our platform connected you with other readers, writers, and thinkers. Our goal, from the beginning, was to help you share ideas that matter.

I’m hoping the new CEO, Tony Stubblebine, has a plan to make Medium work even better.

August 29, 2022

Bad Defenses and Worse Lawyering

Legal Eagle Devin Stone explains in language that everyone can understand how much trouble Donald Trump is in and what his lawyers are doing wrong.

I have no idea where this all going to end up. I’d like to speculate and say an indictment is in the future, but until it actually happens, I won’t believe it.

August 27, 2022

Sunset Over the Pond
August 25, 2022

10-Minute Head Start

Niklas Göke woke up early and then blogged about it. It’s kind of genius.

August 25, 2022

The Ongoing Influence of QAnon and Its Self-Made Mythologies

Mike Rothschild, writing for Lithub, has a deep dive into conspiracy theories and the creation of QAnon.

In the post-Trump world, the QAnon movement split along two parallel tracks. Sometimes they happened to intersect, but many other times they went their own way. Most believers went down one, a few went down the other. But both are critical to understanding why this movement persisted long after any hope of The Storm’s” arrival had passed.

One track was a mainstreaming of Q’s core tenets to the point where the basics of QAnon—the drops, the obscure comms”—were no longer necessary, or even desirable. Q was no longer the cool, secret club that you had speak the jargon to have a chance of getting into. It was just conservatism” now. The tenuous coalition of MAGA-devoted Q believers and more progressive pandemic truthers that lurched out of Facebook in 2020 had become one unified front in 2021. In countless school board meetings, city council sessions, protests, health freedom” conferences, and segments on major right-wing media, the same story was being told, and it was a story that even the most casual Q believer would have no problem embracing.

The other track was much farther on the fringe than even most Trumpists were willing to travel. This was where Michael Protzman and his devoted cultists in Negative48 rode, along with other, even more outwardly racist and ant-Semitic new Q promoters. On this track, Q drops were still gospel and the comms” still were being decoded for all their secrets. And there were a lot of secrets. Trump and JFK Jr. spoke in number codes with Prince and Elvis, quantum medical beds and NESARA would deliver permanent health and prosperity to all, and Trump was still actually the president of a devolved” military government. Fewer people were in this part of Q’s big tent, but they got a lot of baffled media attention for their bizarre antics—gematria cultists waiting for JFK and drinking industrial bleach out of a communal bowl[iv] to fight COVID will get clicks.

You may not want to, but you should read the whole thing.

August 22, 2022

Will Sandman Get a Second Season?

Because Sandman is a really expensive show. And for Netflix to release the money to let us make another season we have to perform incredibly well. So yes, we've been the top show in the world for the last two weeks. That still may not be enough. https://t.co/m7VusGL2rW

— Neil Gaiman (@neilhimself) August 21, 2022

Boy, I hope so. There’s a great deal of story to tell.

August 20, 2022

Republicans Are America’s Problem

Charles M. Blow, writing an opinion piece in The New York Times, has an interesting premise: Republicans are a problem. He starts by lamenting Liz Cheney’s primary defeat because she would not bow down to The Big Lie.”

However, her loss does crystallize something for us that many had already known: that the bar to clear in the modern Republican Party isn’t being sufficiently conservative but rather being sufficiently obedient to Donald Trump and his quest to deny and destroy democracy.

We must stop thinking it hyperbolic to say that the Republican Party itself is now a threat to our democracy. I understand the queasiness about labeling many of our fellow Americans in that way. I understand that it sounds extreme and overreaching.

But how else are we to describe what we are seeing?

First off, are you just seeing this play out now? Wait, here’s the revelation Mr. Blow has finally experienced…

We have to stop saying that all these people are duped and led astray, that they are somehow under the spell of Trump and programmed by Fox News.

Propaganda and disinformation are real and insidious, but I believe that to a large degree, Republicans’ radicalization is willful.

Republicans have searched for multiple election cycles for the right vehicle and packaging for their white nationalism, religious nationalism, nativism, craven capitalism and sexism.

There was a time when they believed that it would need to be packaged in politeness — compassionate conservatism — and the party would eventually recommend a more moderate approach intended to branch out and broaden its appeal — in its autopsy after Mitt Romney’s 2012 loss.

But Trump offered them an alternative, and they took it: Instead of running away from their bigotries, intolerances and oppression, they would run headlong into them. They would unapologetically embrace them.

This, to many Republicans, felt good. They no longer needed to hide. They could live their truths, no matter how reprehensible. They could come out of the closet, wrapped in their cruelty.

But the only way to make this strategy work and viable, since neither party dominates American life, was to back a strategy of minority rule and to disavow democracy.

No shit.

I’m so happy this man concluded that Republicans don’t want democracy as if this is some new-fangled thing he just figured out.

Republicans want fascism. And nothing will change their minds. Rape allegations, fraud, tax evasion, lying, stealing confidential information, and general mob mentality, are always spun that Republicans are right and everyone else is wrong.

It’s a cult.

Liz Cheney refused to drink the spiked Kool-aid and paid the political price for being right in her convictions (this one time).

August 19, 2022

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