Loose Ends

The next few days are crammed with various appointments (vet for Isis – stay tuned for blood in the sand – dentist for me, etc. etc.) so a few quick hits. Henry Louis Gates’s tribute to John Hope Franklin on The Root.com reveals how staunch Franklin was in his desire to bring African Americans into the mainstream. Shame on Harvard for dissing him!

Sidebar: The Root will be the subject of its own entry one of these days, when I have time to ponder the strange line between substance and fluff.

The folks at Yankee, which publishes The Old Farmers Almanac, must think the their readership is all a) elderly b) disabled c) wealthy beyond imagining and d) deficient in vitamins and minerals. AND able to clear the brush from acre of land, till the soil, plant and harvest crops, weed, prune, mow, fertilize and log and construct their own barns and outbuildings. I don’t get it.

Just received a copy of Black Noir that includes a short story of Mother’s that I’d never seen before. It’s “On Saturday The Siren Sounds at Noon,” and it was on the basis of this 10-page story that the folks at Houghton Mifflin asked Mother to write a novel. The Street was published in 1946 and the rest of the history is well known. I’d like to know who published it without permission in 1999.

Errol Morris has been publishing a fascinating series, “Whose Father Was He?”  It combines mid-nineteenth century history, genealogy, cultural anthropology, and great investigative reporting on life and death (at Gettysburg) of Amos Humiston.

The Hartford Courant is now going to have two TV broadcast operations in its newsroom.  I wish them well in combining to divergent cultures and styles of reporting. I wish especially well to the print reporters whose new boss formerly ran the TV stations. Query: Should we expect the economic downturn to obliterate media ownership restrictions for all time?

As of 6:30 p.m., the only April Fool’s news item I’ve seen is the American economy and that’s hardly a joke.

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