Sorry for the dramatic title or subject line. I got in my car today and the classical music station was playing Mozart's Requiem. Texted some friends and told them if they hadn't listened to it in a while, they should. One friend wrote back, I think sarcastically, that he'd fire it up before his pickleball match. I suggested that he go with either O Fortuna (sp?) from Carmina Burana or the end of Symphonie Fantastique. (I love that John Boorman turned what I think is a drinking song into the theme for Arthur and his knights rediscovering their purpose and riding to confront Mordred.)

Blogs are great, but it's frustrating that in 2023, they're frustrating to follow. For example, I regularly read Jason, Chuck, Daniel, and others. Great places to visit. Jason writes wonderfully about life in the Pacific Northwest, Chuck (so very concisely...but don't let the economy of words fool you) discusses life, zines, and photography, and Daniel makes you want to hop on a bike, take photos of birds, and then get on a plane to Albania. The various "leave a comment" functions for all of our sites are maddening. I've written a few replies in the past couple of days just to see them go into the abyss. I know it's the same with my site. In 2023, this shouldn't be an issue.

I'm thinking about re-starting my old Consuming Journalism Substack. Mainly as a vehicle for pursuing a few jobs (think mosaic, not one full-time job) that I think I might be good at. It would be very focused - primarily aimed at demonstrating value to a few potential employers, perhaps of minimal interest to people who randomly stumble upon websites.

Here's the stumbling block. I don't enjoy the logistics of being online. I'd rather send letters. But we're well past that, aren't we? I also don't want to have two websites. The things I like writing about here would be a world away from discussing Seymour Hersh's latest article about Nord Stream I and II. A part of me reasons that people can just skip the posts that don't interest them, but another part of me says those differences are too jarring. I think I'm leaning towards keeping things separate. I'd treat the Substack as a CV of sorts.

Ok, lighter fare.

If you're ever in Phoenix, in the Bethany Home Road corridor, and you've got a hankering for visiting a fun little Italian shop, head to Niccoli's Italian Grocery and Deli. The people are great, and they've got all the staples. My favorite is the white anchovies they've got in the refrigerator. The Greek salad is very nice. I'm not a big meat eater, but I regret not getting my parents one of the Italian subs. (I used a tripadvisor link above for Niccoli's...intentionally. I read a cool article the other day in - probably the New York Times - about companies like Tripadvisor and Yelp dealing with fake reviews. They've got huge teams addressing the issue, and I think it's something I'll pursue. Just in time for AI to make it obsolete, I'm sure. I like the idea of the detective work, though.)

There's no way I'm posting something today without acknowledging the tragedy in Turkey and Syria. I'm grateful for having had the chance to visit Gaziantep, Aleppo, Sanliurfa...wonderful people experiencing terrifying heartbreak. I haven't donated anywhere yet. If you know of a great organization, please let me know.