Blathr Wayne Lorentz

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Showing blathrs with the tag “New York Times.”

It's like buttah

Sunday, November 5th, 2023 Alive 19,185 days

A buttery gift list

According to the 2023 Christmas gift guide from the New York Times, I should buy either the buttery robe or the buttery wallet. Or both.

It turns out, neither of them contain any butter, so Iʼll stick to my go-to gift: butter cookies.

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Pardon me…

Thursday, October 19th, 2023 Alive 19,168 days

An error message from

Sad to see the New York Times web site stumble. But itʼs probably the nicest server error message Iʼve seen.

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Squint harder

Sunday, May 28th, 2023 Alive 19,024 days

The New York Times on a TRS-80 Model 100

Weekend project: Coming up with a harder, slower, less-reliable way to read the New York Times. Mission accomplished.

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No running

Saturday, December 10th, 2022 Alive 18,855 days

Today, while reading an article in the New York Times about Walt Whitman, I came across an map of Fort Greene Park.

The map shows a boys playground, and a girls playground. We had separate playgrounds when I was in elementary school, too. I thought it was a Catholic school nun thing. I guess it was just a normal part of society, if old-fashioned.

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Toil and trouble

Sunday, October 30th, 2022 Alive 18,814 days

Burrito stuffins simmering on the stove

I decided to make my own frozen burritos. For the filling, I had two choices:

  1. Buy a can of ready-to-go burrito filling from the supermarket for $1.09
  2. Spend $15 following a recipe from the New York Times Cooking section

Naturally, I went the hard route.

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I wonder if they had a cake

Monday, October 10th, 2022 Alive 18,794 days

The New York Times in full-disclosure mode

Congratulations to the New York Times for not having to print any corrections on Monday, October 10th.

That sounds bitchy, but itʼs not. Journalists donʼt take corrections lightly. Having issued a few, myself, I can tell you that it hurts a lot, and for a long time.

One difference between bloggers and journalists is that journalists let people know when they make mistakes, and print corrections. They donʼt just pop into WordPress and silently change things.

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Dead tree edition

Monday, September 20th, 2021 Alive 18,409 days

An error message from The New York Times

If the largest newspaper in America canʼt keep its web site running, what chance do I have?

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Upper railing

Sunday, September 19th, 2021 Alive 18,408 days

An error message from The New York Times

The New York Times has “lost” this web page. I guess thatʼs not surprising, since it also lost my newspaper today.

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Loaded question

Sunday, June 27th, 2021 Alive 18,324 days

The New York Times app, with its pants around its ankles

The New York Times app sure knows how to load ads.

Too bad it doesnʼt know how to load the news that I pay for.

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A ton of Newtons

Friday, January 29th, 2021 Alive 18,175 days

The New York Times web site incorrectly locating Newton, New Jersey in Kansas

This is what happens when your mapping database doesnʼt have coordinates for a town. It puts the town in Kansas.

In this case, the New York Times map jammed Newton, New Jersey in the middle of Kansas. It probably thinks other towns are there, too.

Never trust any data. Always check for NULL and improbable values.

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It all makes sense now

Sunday, January 3rd, 2021 Alive 18,149 days

A slightly mangled New York Times

Due to a printing error, someone somewhere is missing the first two letters from page 30 of todayʼs New York Times.

Theyʼre “F” and “o.”

Youʼre welcome.

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It takes more than texting

Sunday, June 7th, 2020 Alive 17,939 days

Today I learned that one of my friends applied for food stamps because of the COVID situation. I found out about it from an interview in the New York Times. I think that makes me pretty much the definition of a bad friend.

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Paper work

Saturday, February 1st, 2020 Alive 17,812 days

Henri reading the New York Times on a Nook. I prefer the dead tree edition.

When I was in J school, we were issued little pamphlets from the New York Times titled How To Read The New York Times. It was very useful, and one of those things that would be useful for people to read today since so many are burdened by information overload.

The instructions went something like this:

  1. Throw away all of the sections you donʼt like.
  2. Put the remaining sections in order of priority.
  3. Look at the headlines on each page. If a headline doesnʼt interest you, move on.
  4. If a headline interests you, read the subhead or the photo caption. If youʼre not interested or arenʼt learning anything new, move on.
  5. Read the first three paragraphs of the article. Move on when you stop learning something new.

This method is still remarkably effective, especially for plowing through a fat pile of Sunday papers.

The only Times sections I toss are the Book Review and the Magazine. I like books, but I want to form my own opinion about them. And the Magazine is just hard to read. The paper is too glossy and the print too small for the stylish lighting in my abode.

Counterintuitively, I find the Sports section quite compelling. Even though I have near zero interest in sportsball, thereʼs always an article in there that is intellectually intriguing. A couple of weeks ago there was a good piece about how “home field advantage” is a thing of the past because teams are so pampered in their palatial practice facilities that even when they play in their home stadium, theyʼre playing on unfamiliar territory. Fun stuff.

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The Times needs a dictionary

Sunday, September 22nd, 2019 Alive 17,680 days

Notification spam from the New York Times

Nice notification spam, New York Times.

I only have “Breaking News” selected in my notification settings, which the app says is supposed to be “Urgent and important stories.” By definition, the Opinion page is not breaking news.

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Wednesday, August 21st, 2019 Alive 17,648 days

An error message from the New York Times app

The New York Timesʼ 500 page is 404.

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Saturday, March 7th, 1987 Alive 5,793 days

I can hear the future.

This morning I bought a Compact Disc player at Crazy Eddie down in Wayne. Iʼve been reading about Compact Disc players in the Science Times section of the Times, and in Omni, and get this — it uses LASERs to play music!

Dad had to go down to a quarry for some stuff, and he let me come along and stop at Crazy Eddie. While he was looking at stereo receivers, I bought a Unisef portable compact disc player for $119. I also got a disc full of music: Invisible Touch by Genesis.

The machine is like a small shoebox that hangs around your neck on a flat nylon strap. Top flips up so you can put silver music discs inside. Thereʼs a liquid crystal display and a bunch of buttons on the top, too. It all looks like an oversized Star Trek tricorder.

The buttons on top are:

  • Open
  • Stop/Clear
  • Skip/Search
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  • Play/Pause
    ⏵ ⏸
  • Program
  • Repeat

On the left side is a switch to change the power source from batteries to power adapter, and three jacks — two for power, and one for audio line level output. Itʼs strange that thereʼs two for power. The end of the wall wart power adapter actually splits off into two different plugs, and you have to plug them both in for the machine to turn on.

The front has a headphone jack and a thumbwheel to control the volume.

And just so you donʼt forget that this machine plays music digitally, the word “digital” appears four times on the top.

The L.C.D. screen shows the song number that youʼre listening to, and it also counts how many minutes and seconds into the song you are. Thereʼs a forward button to go immediately to the next song! Itʼs so fast there isnʼt even the noise like a squashed chipmunk that my tape player makes when I fast forward to the next song. It also has a backwards button that restarts the song youʼre listening to now. The player makes chirping noises when moving from song to song. Maybe itʼs squashing crickets instead of rodents.

If you open the bottom, thereʼs a place to put ten AA batteries. I donʼt think Iʼll ever use that. Who can afford ten AA batteries? Iʼll just plug it into the wall.

Because itʼs LASERs making the music, the quality is supposed to be as good as can be. It sounds different from my Invisible Touch tape, but I canʼt really say how. Thereʼs no hiss between songs, I noticed that. But the music, itself, sounds different, too. More ringy. More hissy, but not tape hiss. A different kind. And there seems to be a lot more instruments than on the tape.

The Times says this is the future of music. Now I just have to find more music discs.

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