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« Jeane Kirkpatrick, RIP | Main | Frightful »

Back to Blogging

Happy New Year! I suppose I could catch up on all the missed holidays, but at some point, you just write off lost time and get back to the cycle.

Back from an extended blogging vacation, relaxed, refreshed, and having missed tremendous amounts of major news, such as Iran's adoption of the Nazi salute and the goose-step. It's not as though you actually run out of things to say, but it's easy to see why blogging and talk radio are such a natural fit. Both of them consume tremendous amounts of material, and you'd better not repeat yourself too often, else you may as well just post links back to prior posts.

One of the interrupting events of mid-December was a long, quick drive back east to Long Island - driving a 26-foot truck. Now I like driving, especially long distances. Here to NY - ok. From the house to Wal-Mart - not so much. But I basically had two days to get the truck to Long Island, so I-80 it was. I'll say this for the Interstates, they have speed, which is just as well, since the things are routed away from anything you might want to stop and see, anyway.

In this case, it was also a chance to kluge together some interesting technology. DC-AC converters have come down dramatically in price, and I traded in my Comcast cable modem for a Sprint wireless card (although I still have my old wifi card for when I'm in a town lacking a digital signal but possessed of a wifi-enhanced coffee shop). Iowa may have wifi-enabled all of their rest stops, but that was just a redundant system as far as I was concerned. (That may be a red flag for all those governments putting money into muni-wifi. Or it may be an excuse to turn it into another stagnant public utility.)

So after having driven from Peru, IL to the exit for Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, I am reminded that half the so-called highways on Long Island don't take truck because they were built when the largest thing on the road was a drafthorse. I know Robert Moses tried his best, but there's not enough air in any tire to get a 12' truck under a 10' 6" clearance. This was at 1:00 in the morning, having driven 800 miles already, needing to have the truck at the door by 9:00 the next morning, and low on gas, and having drunk enough diet Coke that my back teeth were floating. Having crossed The Broncks, heading for the gloriously named Throgs Neck Bridge, no neighborhood was safe to empty and refuel in, and the refreshing early-morning traffic jam made changing lanes an adventure in itself.

Ah, the magic of technology. With only the guidance of a warning sign somewhere in one of the 45 highway-to-higway interchanges in the Bronx, saying, "Trucks - Expressways Yes! Parkways No! It's The Law!," I pulled up Mapquest on the laptop in the seat next to me, and had a full-screen GPS helping me find the Yellow Brick Expressway. This would have been completely impossible even three years ago.

Soon, it'll be an option.


Power, Faith, and Fantasy

Six Days of War

An Army of Davids

Learning to Read Midrash

Size Matters

Deals From Hell

A War Like No Other


A Civil War

Supreme Command

The (Mis)Behavior of Markets

The Wisdom of Crowds

Inventing Money

When Genius Failed

Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking

Back in Action : An American Soldier's Story of Courage, Faith and Fortitude

How Would You Move Mt. Fuji?

Good to Great

Built to Last

Financial Fine Print

The Day the Universe Changed


The Multiple Identities of the Middle-East

The Case for Democracy

A Better War: The Unexamined Victories and Final Tragedy of America's Last Years in Vietnam

The Italians

Zakhor: Jewish History and Jewish Memory

Beyond the Verse: Talmudic Readings and Lectures

Reading Levinas/Reading Talmud