Thursday, April 29, 2004

Point size of interest

Multifocals arrived today. I had forgotten how large 9.5pt type really is.

But I will still resist the temptation to go any smaller on serif body type.

Something others have done

I'm pleased to say the community has chipped in for a funeral fund for the lady Pat Stringa wrote about.

I love this town

The world was a better place today

I managed to be what people call a mentor. Nobody will know.

How good is that?

Wednesday, April 28, 2004

What the!

A survey for the World Editors Forum reads inter alia :
Do you want we create new categories ... Globally, do you find the blog interesting for your job?


It's Monty Python's Flying Circus!

A US copy comrade has referred me to The Batsmen of the Kalahari after I gatecrashed the Baseball Forum at Testy Copy Editors.

Very politically incorrect but the boys insulted everyone, including Poms.

Sunday, April 25, 2004

Anzac Day Part II

Next person who says veterans were blown away by bigger numbers at remembrance marches, please see me after class.

From darkness, light.

Anzac Day

Today is Anzac Day, the 89th anniversary of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps' landing at Gallipoli, Turkey.
I took the Australian flag someone had unthoughtfully attached off the sprig of remembrance before Dawn Service - I'd never seen one on a sprig before.

A day of sadness.

Thursday, April 22, 2004

It begins

Sydney readers, please note following address:

sydney transport

please note rules of engagement

Friday, April 16, 2004

Info from Australian Journalists Association

Free Speech Muzzled - In a similar vein to our Orwell Awards, the US Muzzle Awards given to Free Speech Violators were awarded last Tuesday. The Secret Service won a Muzzle for investigating whether Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist Michael Ramirez of the LA Times could be charged with "threatening the life" of the US President for a cartoon depicting a man pointing a gun at Bush. Nominations for the Australian Orwell Awards are now open for both national and international violators of Press Freedom. Enter your nominations at

Ruff stuff

Thursday, April 15, 2004

Some days are diamonds, and some are stones.

Terrible things happen to people and we write about them. This front-page story in our paper (the St George and Sutherland Shire Leader in this instance) this morning moved me more than any since the anniversary of the Bali bombings.

A sad ending for a kind-hearted lady who loved animals

Died alone in unit


Bernadette James lived for her many cats, which shared her small Department of Housing unit in Mortdale.

Mrs James, 63, also known as Bernadette Richards, died about five days ago in her bed, alone except for her beloved pets.

It wasn't until neighbours called police about the stench coming from her unit, that her body
and 12 cats were found.

Hurstville Council's animal welfare officers removed three cats from a small second bedroom, one cat roaming about the unit and another eight that had been locked in cupboards and wardrobes.

Neighbours in the well-maintained block said Mrs James's son and daughter had died about five years ago.

They said she had become a loner in the last three years and rarely left the Station Street apartment, except for doctors' appointments or to buy groceries.

However, the normally quiet grandmother became very upset a few weeks ago when the RSPCA visited her unit to check on the condition of the cats.

Two weeks ago she sent a letter to a neighbour, Jackie Wilson, accusing her of contacting the animal protection group.

``Watch out you don't suffer a tragic loss,'' Mrs James wrote.

``The only reason I get out of bed is because of my pets.''

Mrs Wilson, who denied she had contacted the RSPCA, said her carpeted unit had been full of fleas for years because of Mrs James's cats and the smell of cats' urine and faeces often had been overwhelming.

``But it's still a very sad ending. I feel very sad,'' she said.

Friend Allan Leister said Mrs James was a ``kind-hearted lady'' and a loner.

``She was a lovely lady who lived for her cats,'' he said.

``She used to take in stray cats. She didn't go out much, just to buy groceries and cat food.''

Nearby shopkeeper Rima Obeid said Mrs James had not been in her store for about three years.

``But before that she used to come all the time and tell me about her animals,'' Ms Obeid said.

``I used to see her on her balcony with a lot of her cats. She was a lovely lady, but I assume she got very sick because she was very frail in the last few years.''

Police said there were no suspicious circumstances relating to Mrs James's death.

The council's head animal officer, Wayne Asplett, said the 12 cats were all very well looked after.

RSPCA deputy chief inspector David O'Shannessy said an inspector visited the unit on March 12.

``At that time there were fewer than 10 cats in the unit .... and because of the conditions in which they were kept there was no concern,'' Mr O'Shannessy said.

He said the RSPCA could only act if there was a problem under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act.

At the time of the visit, there was no breach of the act.

Our blessings, we should count

Wednesday, April 14, 2004

Design inspiration

Hats off to News Designer which now has hyperlinks to front page thumbnails of the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, the International Herald Tribune, the Globe and Mail, the Guardian, El Mundo, Le Monde and Die Welt.

A world at our fingertips

A changing world

With a $US146 prepaid mobile phone, I can access large parts of the Net - and this site's a breeze - for $0 (which converts oddly enough to $US0) while drinking beer.

How good's that!

Tuesday, April 13, 2004

The cyberworld of September 11 2001

I was wondering this afternoon how a September 2001 blog written by a journalist would read. Here's one.

Note the Sept 27 reference to Monty Python's Camelot

From the only in Australia files ....

This from the Leader this morning, partial coding left in intentionlly.

It all went from baaed to worse lw-3


tagCaption1Bold text #bb normal face text #bb Photo credit

WHO SAYS SHEEP ARE STUPID?BBThe Sharks couldn't take a trick during Saturday night'sntsI 10/4nte NRL
game against the North Queensland Cowboys at Cronulla. Not only did the home side finish well behind
on the scoreboard, but the half-time entertainment of a sheepdog trial also turned into a farce when
the sheep completely outpointed the kelpie who was supposed to be rounding them up. Eventually,
the sheep tired of the chase and jumped into the truck all on their own. bbJOHN VEAGE


Pardon the heading, it's almost as bad as the one I just wrote: Go the Pope bloke! for a review of Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

Web search tip

When you want to focus on matters related to Australasia get yourself out of google and into This portal gives the ability to adapt your search to a world .au or .nz focus.

I'll be out of a job if I keep sharing things like this.

Taken totally out of context

This from a sensible person on Easter Sunday quoting somebody ...

"I was a terribly arrogant sub," she says. "I used to move whole bits around. Now, of course, I can't stand for my writing to be changed.

It's de ja vu again.

Monday, April 12, 2004


Maxine has this illness. And thus my blog silence for the past few days.

Every day you still have hearing is a good one.

Tuesday, April 06, 2004

While I'm in a non-grumpy mood.

This post from The Slot so overwhelmed me that I've been reading much online opinion from a variety of people since.

Better than interviewing your typewriter.


At the risk of renaming this the I Like Tom board, his post at Prints The Chaff about photograpers contains the following words: proud to work with people.

Hey shutter upaya face.

I think the V stands for Veritas.

Well-seasoned columnist Peter V O'Brien, an erstwhile colleague, would like to see companies cut the verbiage. Here's his column in New Zealand's National Business Review.

Sorry about all the wordplay on the headlines, Peter.

A tribute

We hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.

The tolerance - and the patience - of the people listed at the links on these page delights me.

Monday, April 05, 2004

Irritating as hell.

Sydney's Daily Telegraph has been thundering against recent court judgments.

The tone is shrill and the analysis shallow.

Saturday, April 03, 2004

Rocket scientists, not copy editors

I've just watched a NASA video presentation about the Mars rovers' journey. It's one of a number of interesting items available on the SMH's multimedia links page. One hates to be pedantic about groovy sound effects, but in space no one can hear your stages separate.

I fibbed. Pedantry is fun.

Pardon our Kiwi accents, though I've lost most of mine.

Those of you that analyse broadcasting and who have a fast Internet connection might be interested in Paul Holmes' April 2 retrospective of his 15 years on the box.

By way of introduction, this from Television New Zealand:

April 3 2004 marks the 15th anniversary of the Holmes programme making it New Zealand's longest running news and current affairs programme... (Note the standard NZ spelling on last word.)

Thank God for newspapers.

The Way The World Is 101

Tucked away in the comments section of Tom's Print The Chaff is this observation about recent saddening events in Iraq ...

If you think the media wants something more than a audience to tell a story to, you're gonna see more than is really there.

People do nutty stuff, we write stories about it; they're remarkably reliable.

Well said, Tom.

Friday, April 02, 2004

The vison thing.

My optometrist has prescribed multifocals. I'm left wondering how much 23 years in front of cold-type typesetting machines and pagination screens has affected the matter.

Retail therapy time.

Thursday, April 01, 2004

Fuel prices

There's an interesting debate at Testy Copy Editors about when a record price is a record price.
Here's an Australian take on the matter from this morning's issue of our paper.

The US media has recently reported huge increases in the cost of fuelling the world's biggest and thirstiest cars. They bemoan petrol hitting $US1.80 a gallon. That equates to about 63 cents a litre. Sad, ain't it! [Sydneysiders pay 90 cents to 96 cents a litre at the moment]

Thus the expression, ''On ya bike son!''

Economic English elegance from the Economist

Rwanda, remembered

Note the comma.

Olympics Mini Table >