Thursday, November 13, 2008

In Ye Olde Garbage Can

You may not realize this, but there are sometimes posts, half posts, quarter posts, and single sentences that I start writing, give up on, get distracted on, or throw the computer across the room and never actually finish.

For example, I started writing this post which I tentatively entitled "Big Yellow Taxis" in June 2005:

OK, so they're not ripping out the parking lot to regrow paradise, but the WaPo has an article on the proposals to bring the sprawling Tysons Corner development down to a human scale. For those of you unfamiliar with the site:

Route 7 is one of the central traffic arteries of Tysons Corner, a place that has most of the raw ingredients of a traditional city -- it's the Washington region's second-largest jobs center -- but lacks a city's physical setup. Buildings are separated by berms, side yards, parking lots and wide roadways that sacrifice pedestrian ease for vehicle convenience.

The vast drive-through operation at the McDonald's on Route 7, for example, is a marvel of auto-oriented convenience: To keep the cars moving at lunchtime, five headset-wearing clerks roam the pavement outside, taking orders and delivering food.
The biggest problem, of course, is that Tysons Corner was originally designed for the automobile, not the human being. The set up is one that encourages driving, while punishing pedestrians. This is quite literal; two pedestrians were killed in January and April 2004 trying to cross the roads.

Of course, the broader philosophical discussion is whether the Automobile actually has caused us to redesign our entire way of life. Now, I'm not one for technological determinism

And that's as far as I got. Not sure where I was going with it. I could have been heading towards how the automobile effects our way of life, or I could have been setting the stage for the Transformers movie.

Other half posts are bizarre. The following was a "Metablogging" post (August '05), that I didn't really have a punchline for:

I like to see how people find my site. A lot of the references come from the fine folks over there on your right. A few people get here via Pittsburgh Webloggers. Some people seem to have me bookmarked. Othertimes, I just seem to be in the queue on Blogger.

And then there are the Search Engines. I often wonder about some of these searches:

"steve gutenberg" silver "one piece"

breeders o cinamon point breeders

I must admit, however, "breeders o cinamon point breeders" is pretty funny.

With all the flack from the AP, regarding bloggers quoting the AP *gasp* for free (shock and horror!), I wrote this post:

(AP) New York - The Associated Press is reporting
The Associated Press is reporting
The Associated Press is reporting
The Associated Press is reporting
The Associated Press is reporting
The Associated Press is reporting
The Associated Press is reporting
The concept, I think was better than the execution.

And then there are those posts that have no content, just a title. For example from the last 12 months or so, "Do You Feel Lucky, Fluffy?" and "Peduto Action Committee". Frankly, my friends, your guess is as good as mine on those.

You all should feel lucky that most of the really shitty posts do, in fact, get deleted with extreme prejudice.


Mark Rauterkus said...

Great theme. I call it 'digital dust.' We all have it. Some, worse than others, I'm sure.

I should go into my 'drafts' posts and see what pearls I can unearth.

Three said...

I personally love some of the search parameters that have been used to hit my blog. I think the best was "Worlds finest booty shaking videos."

Seriously. At first I was all "Wha?" -- and then I just burst out laughing. The searcher had to be severely disappointed when he hit my site -- and pretty desperate to dig that far in the first place.

O said...

I should go into my 'drafts' posts and see what pearls I can unearth.

It's actually a lot of fun. The best part is trying to figure out why the hell you stopped in mid sentence.

As for bizarre search results, today somebody really wants to know about "catherine baker knolls dog breeder". We're only the 4th hit on Google for that particular string... which says something, I think.

Bram Reichbaum said...

From the Comet, 2/7/08:

The Allegheny County Democratic Committee has a lot riding on its endorsement of Rep. Lisa Bennington's replacement in the 21st legislative district.

Two excellent candidates each represent viable opportunities to begin reforming a foundering Harrisburg. Meanwhile, several other candidates represent strong temptations to repeat typical Committee mistakes of the past.

Frank Pistella, the 27-year state representative originally unseated by Bennington, would be a laughingstock.

Pistella spoke in a thunderous voice -- of course he had detailed command of the legislative process, and as complete an answer as one could can possibly have on key regional issues like the Gurty's Run watershed.

Curiously absent was any mention of real accomplishments during his near-three decade tenure in Harrisburg -- except the pay raise. For this, he made some vague remorseful noises. To the extent that Pennsylvanians are unhappy with their state government, it did not happen over the last two years.

Pistella's argument was technical -- he has experience, and would retain seniority. As to political ideology, the strongest indication he gave was in answer to the question of whether and under what circumstances he would introduce of table gaming to Pennsylvania casinos. Pistella said simply, "Hit me," and passed the microphone.

Paul McKrell took the mic and said, "I'll stand -- and here's why."