Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Sign of the Times

A lot of my favorite time-killing sites are blocked at my new job, so I tend to spend most of my lunch hour reading basically every word published in the New York Times. I'’m completely at the mercy of news cycles for my entertainment. So far it hasn'’t been bad; John Mark Karr, the Lieberman/Lamott race in Connecticut, and the recent NYT manatee fixation (last year autism, this year the noble sea cow) have all piqued my weird interests enough to get me to the bottom of a Venti House Blend without passing out from boredom.

Because I do nothing besides read the newspaper from cover to digital cover, I come across quite a few more AP articles and Reuters bulletins that I probably wouldn'’t have noticed before. These are the kind of stories only linked to for a few minutes until they're replaced by the latest news from the US Open or whatever it is going on right now.

Like, for example, the FBI Most Wanted polygamist Mormon fundamentalist was caught when a state trooper pulled over his bright red Escalade. Presumably for "ridin' dirty."

Or that the FDA just announced that they were starting a panel to oversee the "“body parts industry."

My favorite kinds of news stories aren't in depth investigations of really fascinating topics, or shocking, revelatory scoops that make the front page. The stuff I most like to read is the filler, the little crap picked up off the wire with a few sketchy details meant to drive up the word count, but which just make everything more confusing. Two hundred words on the person with the head in their carry-on duffle bag. That's all I need to get through the day.

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