Inhuman Swill : Page 209
Why is my blog called Inhuman Swill? Because you can unscramble the pieces to make William Shunn.

Wah-hmmm, wah-hmmm, wah-hmmm

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Printing out the whole damn manuscript on our bubble-jet printer. High-quality setting. I started last night before bed. The feed tray only holds about a hundred pages at a time. We're averaging a hundred pages an hour or so. Between reloading and restarting the print job every so often, it should be finished by dinner.

Meanwhile, that sound . . .

Gotta get a laser printer.

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Writing news

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No, I haven't sold the book yet, but I did sell an op-ed piece to ON Magazine. Yes, a print magazine. (It's what used to be Time Digital, and what grew out of the old Netly News web site.) The managing editor asked me to write an 800-word piece for their monthly guest-written front-of-book column "Unavoidable Encounters with Technology," about my experiences creating the check-in registry on September 11th. I wish the circumstances were different, but at least I'm in a place where I can actually produce a piece like that on demand and have it turn out well.

And I am pleased with how it turned out. And boy, does non-fiction ever pay better than fiction. Wow.

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This editorial from The Guardian says exactly the words I've been fumbling for, exactly the words I'd have said if only I had a stronger grasp of international politics:

They can't see why they are hated

Frankly, I'm terrified listening to every American leader from George Bush down to Rudy Giuliani jabbering about how we're hated in America simply because we're a bastian of democracy. Bullshit. We have been bringing this on ourselves, and we've been arrogant enough all these post—Cold War years to think we were mighty enough that no one could possibly fuck with us, that our actions around the globe could never possibly redound to our own harm.

Well, five thousand people in New York City are dead because of those policies. The question is, what power does the average American have to try to change what our government is doing overseas. I frankly have no idea where to start, and I consider myself reasonably well-informed—probably hyper-informed for an American.

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I suppose I wouldn't be the first to point out how screamingly funny The Onion was last week. Or what a fine, fine line they walked.

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Missionary Man

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My memoir is finished. Well, the first draft, anyway. Time to go and lift a pint.

Better idea than trying to lift the manuscript. It rolled in at 1,076 pages.

Next step: blue pencil.

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Emergency.gov

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Fast Company presents a modest proposal from Dan Pink, author of Free Agent Nation. I got to help.

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Ebert on "Zoolander"

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From Ebert's movie review today:

"Responding quickly to the tragedy of Sept. 11, the makers of Zoolander did some last-minute editing. No, they didn't dub over the word 'Malaysia' or edit around the assassination of the prime minister. What they did was digitally erase the World Trade Center from the New York skyline, so that audiences would not be reminded of the tragedy, as if we have forgotten. It's a good thing no scenes were shot in Kuala Lumpur, or they probably would have erased the Petronas Towers, to keep us from getting depressed or jealous or anything."

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The infamous Mormon from the New Orleans cast of The Real World was nearly on the highjacked flights from Boston. Details in a Canadian Press story in the Calgary Herald.

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Correction

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Survivor registries

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Kevin Elliott of About.com has written a penetrating analysis of the WTC survivor registry phenomenon, which I seem to have helped kick off:

http://websearch.about.com/library/weekly/aa091401a.htm

I hope you'll forgive me if I also point out a very kind interview at News.com:

http://news.cnet.com/news/0-1014-201-7147460-0.html

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William Shunn

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