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"The Americans Are Coming!"
By Alex Beam
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Editor, Alex Chao
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Friday, June 20, 2003
A PARTING SHOT: A journalist spy spotted this in the newsroom of a big daily: A genuine New York Times "Stringer's Handbook" tacked up to a bulletin board with the following scrawled on the front:
1. Go to site of story
2. Interview
3. Write story
4. Put Rick Bragg's byline on top of story
5. Submit


posted by a beam 8:46 PM
SOMETHING ELSE FOR TREACHER TO DO IF HE'S BORED WITH ALL THAT NOT-COMMENTING HE'S NOT DOING: There's another one of those "hey-all-you-slacker-artists-make-an-anti-war-poster!" things sputtering along over here. Guess it makes all those unemployed graphic designers feel like that shiny G4 is good for more than housing their Rage Against the Machine mp3s.

Predictably derivative stuff, design-wise (it's hardly surprising they've got the free time) what with all the grainy I-Xeroxed-it-then-put-it-through-12-Photoshop-filters photos of Dubya, the oil derricks spouting blood and the replacing of the flag's stars with bombs/oil logos/skulls. But this one, I thought, was particularly stunning.



Christ, people! Did you trade your moral compass for that new copy of InDesign?

Update: Note two things: 1)Punctuation rules are apparently different on Planet Zarkon! 2)This was posted June 5! Way to meet a deadline, bowelhead!

Update2: Similar idiocy here. Betcha didn't know we bombed Iraq on orders of Phil Knight and a large rodent with a high-pitched voice!
posted by a beam 8:15 PM
Wednesday, June 04, 2003
I KNEW I SHOULDA MADE A LEFT TURN AT INSTAPUNDIT! Looky here at this little blog map! Layne and Welch to the right of Sullivan! Who woulda thunk it? Also, LGF appears to be to the right of itself! And to the left of itself! Good job, Charles!
posted by a beam 4:54 PM
ALL THE NEWS THAT'S FIT TO PRINT. JUST NOT IN OUR, Y'KNOW, ACTUAL NEWSPAPER: Isn't it a bad sign when other newspapers have to start running corrections for you? Update: Also here and here! (via Sully's Bathroom by the Sea)
posted by a beam 9:40 AM
IRONY ISN'T DEAD, IT'S JUST VERY HUNGRY: Wow, New Yorkers are even starting to eat ironically!
"We come here a lot," Leja Kress said with a nervous giggle as she, her sister and a colleague dined at Applebee's in Battery Park City before going to a movie next door.

"We like the bland overpriced food," she explained, about to order the Oriental chicken salad for $10.99. More peals of laughter from the table of hip young New Yorkers: loft in TriBeCa; Web and graphic design firm.

"This place cracks us up," Ms. Kress continued. "All the fake memorabilia. It's like trying to look like it's old, but it's only been here a year."


posted by a beam 9:28 AM
Wednesday, May 28, 2003
MOTHER, MAY I SLEEP WITH TREACHER? Well, of course! But, you know, he's moved!
posted by a beam 4:36 PM
Tuesday, May 27, 2003
THE OTHER BLAIR MEAT: You all already know this, but, for the record, Australia's most-loved shark has a new home!
posted by a beam 8:36 PM
HONESTLY: I would claim that instead of emptying bottles of Spanish red, I've been traveling around, posting up a storm the past week, and then blame the absence of said posts on Blogger and its problems. But then I might end up with my face on Newsweek or Jack Shafer waxing snarky about me. And, well, we can't have that!
posted by a beam 8:23 PM
Tuesday, May 20, 2003
IT'S A MAN THING: Go the Welch comments here and watch all the guys (and Seipp) jawin' about the L.A. directions! Don't they just sound like a buncha old farts? "Well, we took the 110 to LaBrea and hung a left on Vermont down to the Quickie Mart. But I'm bettin' that if we'd'a taken the 10 to the Crenshaw cutoff we'd save at least five minutes! (NOTE: Not real directions!) Oh, and you kids get offa my lawn!" And on a linguistic note, what's this tic of adding a definite article to freeway numbers? You don't get on 5 or I-5, you get on "the 5." This just a So-Cal thing? I never heard this from any S.F.-ites who smelled good enough to go near (except in Layne's filthy novel, but that may have just been the Australian translation).
posted by a beam 8:53 PM
Friday, May 16, 2003

BUSH ATTACKED BY CRAZED TRIBBLES!



posted by a beam 11:25 PM
Wednesday, May 14, 2003
WHILE WE'RE TIMES-BASHING: Times corrections, mostly shorter than Sunday's behemoth, from this amusing book:
February 18, 1989: A brief article about the visit of Prince Charles to the United States misidentified a member of a group that was to meet with him in Washington. The member was Arthur Ochs Sulzberger Jr., deputy publisher of The New York Times, not Arthur Ochs Sulzberger, the publisher.
November 7, 2000: An obituary about Robert M. Carroll, armorer at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, gave a misspelled name in some copies for the curatorship held by Stuart W. Pyhrr. He is the Arthur Ochs Sulzberger curator, not Sulzburger.
November 28, 1999: A column about a family on Roosevelt Island misidentified the river that separates the island from the East Side of Manhattan. It is the East River, not the Hudson.
March 21, 1994: It is with great chagrin that we acknowledge two or arguably three errors in our French in an editorial on the drive to purge the French language of English intrusions. The phrases should have read bete noire, heures de grande ecoute and, arguably, cris de coeur.
March 11, 1975: In yesterday's issue, The New York Times did not report on riots in Milan and the subsequent murder of the lay religious reformer Erlembald. These events took place in 1075, the year given in the dateline under the nameplate on Page 1. The Times regrets both incidents.
December 3, 2000: An interview transcript in The Times Magazine about Bernard Shaw, the CNN anchor, misspelled the brand name of the gin in a martini he savored the day after the election. It is Bombay Sapphire, named for the gemstone. (Safire, also a refreshing spirit, was the author of the column five pages later.)
July 22, 1988: Page 52 in some copies on Saturday was blank.

posted by a beam 6:47 PM


QUESTION OF THE DAY: How long do we suppose
Drudge will get to keep that banner ad?
posted by a beam 5:52 PM
UP AGAINST THE WALL, REDNECK MOTHER: A couple weeks ago, Layne was all (justifiably!) moist about a cool web radio station that played his type of filthy redneck music. If that's your bag and you've got the DirectTV or the AT&T digital cable (or Comcast or whatever it is I'm writing all those damn checks to), check out the Americana channel on their Music Choice dealie. A recent half-hour was chock-full of alt.country goodness. In order: The Jayhawks, John Prine, Kelly Willis, Wilco, Kathleen Edwards, Dwight Yoakam and Steve Earle. Also heard today, Hiatt's "Tennessee Plates," the late-and-lamented Picketts, those lovely Canucks The Be Good Tanyas and classic first-album Lone Justice! Hell but wasn't that album was one of the best things about the '80s? Ain't it just wicked cool they can give you all this (plus the innernut and Laurie Dhue) through a tiny little wire? Whine all you want about the soulless corporations, but right this minute they're filling my house with some of the finest music there is. If they're evil, hell's gonna rock!
Update: Also, Gram Parsons!
Update2: They also put up on the screen various artist factoids. Fr'instance, did you know that Tom Russell lived in Vancouver, BC from 1971-1973? The hell? Also, Gram Parson's wife was suspicious of his relationship with Emmylou Harris.

posted by a beam 5:06 PM


MORE LETTERMAN AND THE NEW YORK TIMES: The little gem of a picture above is from the May 13 edition of the
Wahoo Gazette. And in the comments to this Layne post, Bob Hawkins remembers that Letterman did a Top Ten list a couple years back when the Times had to admit that their statement that the North Pole was melting was, er, no longer operative. So here 'tis, from Aug. 30, 2000:
Top Ten Signs The New York Times is Slipping
10. Instead of "All The News That's Fit To Print," slogan is "Stuff We Heard From A Guy Who Says His Friend Heard About It"
9. President does something on the TV show "West Wing," next day it's on front page
8. It's 108 pages, and there's not one single vowel
7. For every story, accompanying photo is Tony Danza
6. Obituary has become list of people editors wish would die
5. Dick Cheney consistently referred to as "the dude from those Wendy's commercials"
4. Notice on sports page: "All scores are approximate"
3. Only ad in job classifieds: "Wanted -- someone who knows how to put together a damn newspaper"
2. For last two weeks, edited by a disoriented Anne Heche
1. They're endorsing George W. Bush

posted by a beam 4:24 PM
MMMMMMMM, REPTILLLLLLLLLE: Eatin' good in the neighborhood!
posted by a beam 1:37 PM
Tuesday, May 13, 2003
AS THAT ONE GUY SAYS, "HEH:" Top Ten Signs Something's Wrong at The New York Times
posted by a beam 12:55 AM
Monday, May 05, 2003
SUPPORT YOUR LOCAL TREACHER: Now accepting cash!
posted by a beam 12:51 AM
Friday, May 02, 2003
EE! EE! EE! I plugged in an e.e. cummings poem and couldn't tell the difference:
Picasso XXIII Picasso XXIII Picasso you make us
Things which bulge:
grunting lungs pumped full of
Nothing grabbed with circular shrieking tightness
solid screams whisper. Lumberman of
sharp thick mind you make us
shrill presents always shut in the
black unbunged
Something gushes


posted by a beam 9:12 PM
POETRY MEN: OK. While all you self-absorbed jackasses are busy plugging your own URL's into the magic poem machine (You know who you are!), I'm providing a service for humanity! For instance, Robert Fisk, Poet and Gutter of Protestors!
Going on them
members of 20,000
protested at once . Now
gutted by Robert Fisk 17 April
three weeks into the Shias are a
puppet government on
valium before his fiancee, Jessica,
in finding it.
was not supposed to believe,
it, tells the marine Division, a
curfew orders. for example,
is that Farzad Bazoft, the craters Indeed, when
I can promise them
may well
be asked of 35 ministries being placed under Saddam?
had
written by fire to
Washington or woman shouted at once .
Now another fire, because
of papers.
And his lung-buddy John Pilger starts off bold but gets himself so worked up he collapses into a quivering mass of HTML!
The war was the murder of their
children are clearly scouts ;
the victory
of the aggressor
is the corruption of the , hands of a
soldier was no regrets about opening
fire, it is for example, wtl_Tag6 wtl_TagID,146234; var SERVER= ;
var wtl_TagVer = 6;
var wtl_FWD = 0; WTL_TAG =
new Image; WTL_TAG.ID = WTL_TAG ; ID =
WTL_TAG ; new Image; WTL_TAG.
new Image; WTL_TAG.
var CARTREMOVE= ;
var CARTREMOVE= ; var wtl_Offset = 0 ;
WTL_TAG = new Image;
WTL_TAG.
new Image; WTL_TAG.

posted by a beam 8:25 PM
Thursday, May 01, 2003
TYPOS OF THE TIMES: Remember last week when we, the almighty New York Times, said so unequivocally that "at least 170,000 artifacts were carried away" from the National Museum of Iraq? Actually, it looks like it was more like, um, maybe twenty-five. Whooooops!
posted by a beam 12:38 PM
Wednesday, April 30, 2003
WHAT'S KEN LAYNE DOING IN MY IPOD? Nice tune there, Mick. And actually fits very nicely in the ITunes library sandwiched between The Pogues' "Worms" and Kelly Willis' "Wrapped."
posted by a beam 7:12 PM

HAPPY 70TH WILLIE!
Do you know why you're here?
Yes, there's great confusion on earth
And the power that is has concluded the following
Perfect man has visited earth already and his voice was heard
The voice of imperfect man must now be made manifest
And I have been selected as the most likely candidate
Yes, the time is April, and therefore you, a Taurus, must go
To be born under the same sign twice adds strength
And this strength, combined with wisdom and love, is the key

posted by a beam 12:04 AM
Thursday, April 24, 2003
JAFA: (JAF-eh) n. Slang. Term used by locals in certain Canadian ski resorts to refer to a class of people known to frequent such towns and dominate many service industry jobs. Acronym for "Just Another Fucking Australian."
posted by a beam 11:44 PM
MUCH SCREEDY GOODNESS: If you're one of the poor souls crawling into toilets and evacuating yourself into buckets because of Lileks withdrawal, you may want to go take a gander at his political columns. I rarely see anybody link to them, but they're all online if you know where to look! And I'll give ya the love right here! Note, however, that it's a Newhouse site, and like most anything Newhouse-related on the web, it, well, sucks (no disrespect to Jarvis). So bear with me. The Lileks page is here. It's got columns up to March 26 (right on top of things, they are!) The columns since then are here, here, here and here.
posted by a beam 8:02 PM
BLEAT ME! So I can get my daily dose of Lileks from the computer in my tastefully appointed home, but when I try from my desk at Evil Corporation Inc., I just get some damn domain hosting site. This is going to severely cramp my rigorous regime of Goofing Off On The Man's Time!
posted by a beam 4:41 PM
MY PUCE THEORY: I think Treacher's Puce and Pucewatch! Great coup, there, ya punk! Update: Ding!
posted by a beam 12:51 PM
AND PUCE IS ... Is this an admission of guilt?
posted by a beam 12:37 PM
Wednesday, April 23, 2003
ONE MUST ADMIT, MERLE NEVER LOOKED THIS GOOD: I love the First Amendment! (via J.A.F.A.)
posted by a beam 9:11 PM
DAWN SPAWNS! Woohoo!
posted by a beam 5:39 PM
HOLY CRAP, BLEATMAN! Just tried to go to Lileks and got some page saying the domain expired! This would really, really suck, people! Update: The Prof sez he can still get there (sure it's not just your cache, buddy?) but e-mails to Lileks are bouncing back. Hopefully he's just down at the Target with Salam Pax! Update2: OK, he's back. But Instantman steals my joke!
posted by a beam 5:08 PM
Monday, April 21, 2003
KEN LAYNE FOR PRINCE OF DARKNESS '04: Some of youse out there think that great Ken Layne poster over on the peacenick site is some sorta foul insult. Buddies! Am I nuts to want a poster-sized version? It's hysterical! Plus with "'Touche' said the coonass to the yat" she gives a little hat-tip to the opposition! (The artist, Melanie Goux, is a Baton Rouge native, what some Cajuns might call a "coonass;" Layne's from New Orleans, where the "yats" live; also note the "Larry Jonestowne" reference: Peace chick does her homework!). And in her blog she writes:
Finally, during the course of this project, (rules be damned) I received a small number of pro-war posters, some of which were very well done and thought provoking. Although I disagree with the sentiments expressed in these pieces, they deserve to be shown. Therefore, at some point in the near future, I will post them on a special page, to be dedicated to my favorite staunch conservative, my dear father. In spite of our differing political views, we love and admire each other very much.
So hey! Let's all have a group hug!

Update: Well Layne (damn him to, er, well, somewhere) beat me to half this by about six minutes. With the same "coonass" link even! Yikes!

Update2: Of course none of this means that Sir Pranks-A-Lot and his "sensational peace poster prank of '03" weren't brilliant!
posted by a beam 8:24 PM
WHY YOU SHOULD GO HIT LAYNE'S TIPJAR:
"Personally, I blame everything on Ken Layne, who got me into blogging in the first place." - Dave Barry

posted by a beam 6:34 PM
GO AS HELL PORKIE: Are teh thouhgts for you A. Beam are Puce bloger? Then wish to go as selcet here! CLICK
posted by a beam 3:36 PM



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