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« Moviegoing: "A History of Violence" | Main | What We Eat »

October 07, 2005


Michael Blowhard writes:

Dear Blowhards --

* Mike Hill, a born storyteller, recalls a friend who became a junkie.

* Another born storyteller, ChelseaGirl, recalls the day she discovered that she's kinky.

* Young guys should do themselves a favor and become regular readers of Jill's blog, Introspectre. It isn't as though Jill makes any sense out of what it's like to be a woman. Who can? But she's fearless about putting it all out there.

* Nate Davis has been enjoying the writing of Jonathan Lethem.

* Steve Bodio thinks that women might do well to avoid beauty products made in China.

* 2Blowhards' very own naked model, Molly Crabapple, explains to the NYPress why she has quit Suicide Girls.

* La Coquette wonders if she has become a fashion veec-teeem.

* The book-crazy bloggers at Bookgasm don't confine themselves to what the serious mainstream outlets have dubbed "real literature." They aren't reading to impress, and they aren't writing to earn good grades from their English prof. They're more adventurous than that, writing about what books really are, as well as what turns them on: horror as well as classics, movie tie-ins and anthologies.

* Hard to believe but apparently true: Nielsen reports that Americans are now watching more television than ever, up 12.5% from a decade ago. How is this even possible? How many hours are there in a day?

* Alice thinks that parents should stop blaming videogames for their children's bad behavior and start accepting some of the responsibility for it themselves.

* Shouting Thomas has a tip for record-it-yourself musicians.

* Yahmdallah gets off some hilariously apt lines in an omnibus posting about seeing a number of films. Nice passage:

So far I've deeply deeply loathed all of Jane Campion's films, and when I hate a director that much, it's almost like loving them.

* DazeReader, blogging once again after a break, delivers a fascinating posting about a popular young web-porn starlet who has quit the business. Is she right to complain about the way she was treated, or should she count herself lucky to have done so well for herself?

* CookieBitch made me laugh a lot with a posting about how men can get a little too comfy with their women.

* Tyler Cowen wonders if we'll be seeing nonfiction books grow shorter and shorter.

* What makes a melody a great one? Fred has a hunch.



posted by Michael at October 7, 2005


I really appreciate your "elesewhere" round ups.
Lots of good reading.


Posted by: Paul on October 7, 2005 5:38 PM

Thanks, Paul, glad to hear it. It just seems to me that there's so much good reading washing around these days that it'd be a shame not to point some of it out.

Posted by: Michael Blowhard on October 7, 2005 7:17 PM


Thank you again for including my pretty dumb things in your writing writing writing rawhide roundup. I deeply appreciate it.

And I promise a post on delaying orgasm, aka rocking it diving board style, soon, appropriately dedicated to my favorite blowhard, you.


Posted by: chelsea girl on October 7, 2005 7:27 PM

Any time I see Nielsen cited, I sorta wince. (Full disclosure: I consulted for them in the 80s.) To work there is an excercise in masochism. You keep trying to do the best job you can given project cost restraints, yet the networks (who fund the ratings operation) are never happy with your eyeball counts.

I've lost rack of what A.C. is doing now, but the nets have been howling, so it's possible they've tweaked one category or another (TVs in bars? -- I don't know.)

Still, I wonder how they deal nawadays with the likes of folks who leave TVs on for every waking hour whether being watched or not.

Posted by: Donald Pittenger on October 8, 2005 10:00 AM

Yeah, I love these round ups too! How could I not know about La Coquette! I love it! Ooooh, sorry about the !!!!!s - I've just been to the gym, had coffee....

Anyway, La Q is right about the Fugly blogger gals: they just don't get Kirsten Dunst. I heart that outfit too.

Posted by: MD on October 8, 2005 12:36 PM

Me, too! Me, too! I love the round-ups! Especially when I'm in them!

And coffee!!! And exclamation points!!!


Here's how you watch 12.million-bazillion hours of it a day:

1. Get G5 + Apple Cinema Display
2. Have S.O. hook you up with good speakers.
3. Add tuner card (optional: also add extra external hard drive to offload stuff to watch at S.O.'s tv-less household)
4. Input your favorites in an account at
5. Work (or, alternately, "work") 12 hours/day at your computer

Before you know it, your media consumption will have shot up into the stratosphere. Although to be fair, most of what I watch is stuff I "watch"—reruns of childhood faves, fluff and news, that I can easily work to.

I subscribe to the Ole Golly (remember Harriet the Spy?) school of TV watching: it is only acceptable when you also occupied with something else.

Posted by: Colleen on October 8, 2005 2:23 PM

The Yahmdallah line recalls a Hans Keller quote that Terry Teachout has cited a few times on his blog, "As soon as I detest something I ask myself why I like it."

Posted by: Bryan on October 8, 2005 2:32 PM

I'm a current Neilsen household, and my TV is on for about ten hours every day. Most of that, however, is either sports news/analysis or documentaries, to which I only partially pay attention.

The big increase is probably due to the number of TV sets in each household. I grew up with one, period. If a second person wanted to watch something, we had a VCR. If there were three programs of interest, someone lost out.

These days, Dad's watching one TV, Mom another, and the kids are all in their bedrooms with their own TVs, watching MTV, playing video games (Neilsen monitors this) or watching DVDs. I doubt overall TV viewership is up over the last ten years; it's television usage that has increased.

Household statistics don't mean much anymore, except to the major networks that cling to them as a sign of relevance. Meanwhile, the cable stations follow the individual demographics.

Posted by: Ned on October 8, 2005 7:35 PM

It's hard to know what "watching TV" really means, isn't it? I've been amazed by the number of houses I visit where TVs are simply ... on. I guess they're semi-paid attention to, but mostly they just seem to add to the jumble and craziness. Is that right, that TV-watching is also thought to be going on when kids are playing videogames? Sheesh. Are there better ways of judging how much TV watching (and of what kind) is going on than Nielsen?

Posted by: Michael Blowhard on October 9, 2005 11:07 PM

I'm sure if there were ways to monitor simultaneous multimedia activities around the households with teenagers, the results would be astounishing.

My son's usual mode of operations: TV is always on, he's alternating windows between his music collection (glaring at destructive volume), algebra homework, instant messaging with minimum 10 friends: all at the same time.
Add to it periodical screams "Fire in the hole!", and you'll understand why I'm so happy he's away to college.

Posted by: Tatyana on October 9, 2005 11:50 PM

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