Break-Dancing Dinosaurs

Nytimestypewriterillus_1 Some ancient scribes have found the future. And their Web site is a treat if you love reading grumpy old men at the top of their game. From Hot Type to Blog is a group cyberhome for retired newspapermen who tell stories long after deadline, steam over abuses of the English language, and apparently delight in being back in business.

So far I've read what it was like to work for R. Stanley Woodward, the infamous NY Herald Tribune sports editor, "a huge man with a high-pitched voice and Coke-bottle thick eye glasses," who couldn't abide by people belting home runs. They hit them.

Another post grouses about use of the word "sustainability" as if it belongs at the breakfast table. A third pays attention to an overlooked hero of Watergate, the security guard named Frank Wills who discovered the break-in that toppled a president.

It's pretty last-century: light on graphics or such conventions as blogrolls. The word rules. At the end of each piece, the newsmen sign their names and list their old affiliations -- The Washington Star, Miami News -- papers rid hard and put up wet, and now as long gone as the whistle of the Norfolk & Western.

Speaking of papers, Upyernoz waxes nostalgic for the days when the press featured articles about war during times of war.

Speaking of blogging, the Electronic Frontier Foundation has put together the best legal primer for writing in the digital age that I've seen.

And if you or those old news buzzards above want to find free pictures for your blog, start here.

Or, for something completely different, how about The Coolest soccer video?

Or even cooler, an ingenious home-made air conditioner? (thanks for these last two, MSNBC Clicked)

Carl Rotenberg
Posted 06/15/2005 08:27:47 AM

The old reporters posts remind me of the ancient tennis players I played tennis with at Wall Park for many years. Grousing and kvetching, but with intellectual brio. I loved the post at "From Hot Type to Blog" referring to H.L. Mencken's "Boobus Americanus."

PLD
Posted 06/15/2005 09:31:05 AM

Hot Type is such a great find, Daniel! Am always curious to read what the journos are writing in their spare time - thanks. BTW did you catch those survey results on %s that considered Bill O'Reilly a journalist to those who considered Woodward one? Depressing...

Sherri W.
Posted 06/15/2005 09:51:44 AM

It's only vaguely relevant to this post (but at least vaguely).... However, I was wondering what you thought about Michael Kinsley's recent announcement about shaking up the editorial staff to make room for the "wiki-torial" to become a part of the LA Times? As the proprietor of one type of interactive newspaper space, what is your analysis of this alternate model of interactive newspaper space?

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