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A blog wherein a literary agent will sometimes discuss his business, sometimes discuss the movies he sees, the tennis he watches, or the world around him. In which he will often wish he could say more, but will be obliged by business necessity and basic politeness and simple civility to hold his tongue. Rankings are done on a scale of one to five Slithy Toads, where a 0 is a complete waste of time, a 2 is a completely innocuous way to spend your time, and a 4 is intended as a geas compelling you to make the time.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Links, no sausage

Updated twice, final 4:07 EST.

The New York Times Week in Review section reprinted this Pat Bagley cartoon from the Salt Lake Tribune, which is one of the few comparisons in the TSA debate that I don't find utterly false. In fact, I find it rather funny.

In the midst of all of its columnists telling us to take our pats and shut up, their Sunday Outlook section has a column by Jeffrey Rosen that dares to flat-out call the current regime unconstitutional. And Rosen is not a hypocritical Republican, he's not some immature person for Ruth Marcus to yell at, he's a long-time legal affairs writer, a professor at George Washington School of Law, legal affairs editor for The New Republic, often published in the Times as well, check out his GW bio here.

Click here to find the 2nd quarter earnings release from Barnes & Noble. Same store sales were down a relatively modest 3.3%, loss was $12.6M, with the expectation that the lion and lamb will lie next to one another and sing songs together and join a book group together and make a perfect world as the company starts to realize sales first of the Nook Color itself and then from all of the ebooks that people will buy for their Nook Color. As initial evidence that this will indeed come to pass, they say after-quarter-end sales for the Fri/Sat/Sun after Thanksgiving doubled at and increased by an impressive 17.2% at stores.

Two articles I really enjoyed in the weekend newspapers.

The first is an article from the Sunday NY Times Business section about an etailer who thinks the more you can get your customers to complain about you, the more you can attract the love of the Google search algorithms.

And the second is from the A section of Sunday's Washington Post, which describes the efforts made to treat patients wounded in Afghanistan as they are moved from the front to Germany.

And also in the Sunday Times, Ariel Kaminer subjected herself to multiple patdowns over the course of her day. Her conclusion: "It’s amazing how quickly the pat-down evolves from shocking indignity to banal hassle, just like padding around barefoot while your pants fall down and your toothpaste tube gets the third degree, something airline travelers have been experiencing for years now. The inconvenience is worth it, of course, if it works — if it uncovers potential dangers before they board a plane. That’s what a spokesman for the T.S.A. informed me, afterward, the officers’ job was: to assess whether I posed a threat to aviation. He would not comment on whether that should have included checking out the objects hidden in my pocket. All I know is I went through the line eight times, and not a single inspector noticed them."

And last but certainly not least, The Washington Post has an ode to The Settlers of Catan, which is one of those board games I really would like to have somebody to play with someday. Boskone? Next Balticon??


brycemoore said...

You're welcome to swing by Maine any time to play Settlers at my place. I'll even take the day off from work. :-)

Or maybe I'll bring it to the next con I go to . . .

Lynxswift said...

I have a copy of the boardgame, but have not played it in that form yet. I've been learning to play it from an online verion on the Playstation 3. I am either not very good at it, or everyone online is an expert, as I have not yet won a game :). If you are still in the neighborhood, I would not mind getting together for a game. My gaming group is in a slump, only meeting every 2-3 months. Perhaps after the holidays? Let me know by blog message or text :). I don't check email much.

Vincent Rupp said...

Have you tried Agricola? It's vaguely similar in that you can harvest resources and it's German, but has a fixed turn limit to outscore your opponents by building the best most-rounded farm possible.