Saturday, March 03, 2007

Bits and Pieces

Stuff that I've been meaning to say:

So after a bit of thought and experimentation, I chose to remain with Blogger as opposed to going over to LiveJournal. I've experimented with LJ and will continue to poke around, but I like the interface, in particular the spellcheck, on Blogger better. LJ does have the potential for icons, which is nice, and allows you to friendslist, but I keep an RSS feed so people can hook up this blog as they see fit, and, as I mentioned before, I check Monkey King's Flist more often than I check my own.

This came to me second-hand, off a newsletter from Publisher's Lunch: Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman's DRAGONSHIPS series, drawn amongst a back drop of Viking-like warriors, three opposing groups of Gods, ships powered by dragons and the ultimate quest for salvation and survival, to Tom Doherty at Tor, with Brian Thomsen editing, at auction, in a major deal, for seven figures, by Christi Cardenas of The Lazear Agency (for Weis) and Matt Bialer at Sanford J. Greenburger Associates (world English). Good for Trace and Margaret!

And speaking of Brain Thomsen, he's got a talk at the end of the month for his book, The Awful Truths, which I talked about here, March 28th, at the Mid-Manhattan Library.

Moving away from the book bidness, most folk know I am originally from Mt. Lebanon, PA, a suburb of Pittsburgh. I keep up with what is going on with back there through the online version of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (which I often refer to as the Press, which has been gone these many years), and a number of blogs. This one, from BlogLebo, covers very local Mt. Lebanon news. Local politics and sports works well with Fester's Place. And for Burgh snarkiness try out Carbolic Smoke Ball and Angry Drunk Bureaucrat. (Warning, neither use particularly mature language, put on the plus side, they hate Joey Porter)

Speaking of blogs, I do read cooking blogs and chef blogs. I'll fess up - I'm a foodie. But when chef and author Michael Ruhlman gives his ally Anthony Bourdain access to his blog, well, sparks are going to fly. Bourdain in the author of Kitchen Confidential, and is the new century's official New York cooking punk, usually seen wearing a leather jacket and smoking a cig. Sort of what the Ramones would have been if they had gone into food service. Bourdain's chief recommendation for an aspiring chef is to learn Spanish, so you can talk to your kitchen staff. Anyway, he's been firing off volleys, including reviews of all the Food Network folks.

Now I'm going to disagree with him and say that there is a good place for "easy-cooking" shows that use preprepared products. I am a big fan of Alton Brown, but waiting a day for a pizza as the dough rises sort of defeats part of the pizza experience. But yeah, Mario deserves to get his own show back.

And as a final note, I came across this site, for a Stephen Fry alarm clock, which will gently roust you from your slumbers with plummy tones and long elocutions. Me, I think the sound that will get any cat-owner immediately awake is that of their pet heaving up a hairball. Someone could make a mint off of that idea.

More later