Archive for January 4th, 2007

Skia become Google (low tech sign mod)
WRAL’s Rick Smith breaks the story of Google’s offices on Franklin Street here in Chapel Hill.

Following on Fred’s post and the comments there, Rick traced Google’s purchase of Skia, a local start up, and with some dot-connecting (possibly via The Way Back Machine) to tell us a little about the company.

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Compare “Shine Raleigh Shine” to “It’s Carrboro”. The difference between uncool and cool.

On YouTube: Raleigh (removed by user) and Carrboro (22,837 views).

Press: David Menconi on “Shine Raleigh.” Ashley Perryman on “It’s Carrboro”

It’s like comparing the Bank of America guy’s “One” with the David Cross/Modest Mouse version of the same song.

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In reviewing Kockroach by Tyler Knox in the December 31 NYTimes Book Review, Matt Weiland writes:

Our finest literary critics hold no endowed chairs and never win prizes, yet their work has the poetry of truth about it and there’s nobody better at answering the fundamental question about any book, a question always more interesting and always harder to answer than whether it’s any good: what is it really about? I mean, of course, the anonymous librarians who prepare the Cataloging in Publication data for the Library of Congress, the brief descriptive classifications that appear on the copyright page of most books. Is there a more succinct description of John Updike’s “Rabbit, Run” than “Middle class men — Fiction”? What writer doesn’t envy the economy and force of “Massacres — Fiction” for Cormac McCarthy’s “Blood Meridian” and “Industrial accidents — Fiction” for Don DeLillo’s “White Noise”? And will there ever be a finer gloss on Marilynne Robinson’s “Housekeeping” than “Eccentrics and eccentricities — Fiction”?

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Sally points me to this NYTimes article, Trying to Clear Absinthe’s Reputation, by Harold McGee.

Basic points: High alcohol is the killer, not wormwood. But wormwood is psycho-active — so is sage with the same chemical. Czech absinthe generally sucks. If it’s not green, it’s not the real thing. If it doesn’t cloud well, it’s not the real thing. Champagne has its own secrets; unclean glasses work best for bubbles.

Framed by a Hemmingway story. Male journalists all want to be like Papa. Why?

An alert NYTimes forum member sends us to a Terra online video feature, Forbidden Fruit: The Absinthe Drinker, (about 7 1/2 minutes) in which retired neurosurgeon David Cook (who is wearing Merrell Mocs) talks about absinthe and the myths and bad science associated with it.

And Ze Frank explains the real way that champagne works.

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