Twitter to the Editor

While recently ranting about the office in my usual manner, I conceived of a scheme to write a series of one-phrase letters to the editor of our local paper. The purpose was vague, but the results would be hilarious. If only I had the attention span top follow through on such schemes.

Twitter to the Editor A friend and co-worker took the idea a step further. Why compose a complete and coherent “Letter to the Editor” 140 thoughtless characters will do the trick? He termed it “Twitter to the Editor”.

Somehow, despite not having the attention span to compose an email, we built a website for the idea. Thus,

Just send a Twitter or message starting with @ttte and in a few minutes, it will be collected on our stately one-page website.

Don’t think too hard about it. Here’s a few Twitters’ to the Editor that we’ve started off with:

  • @ttte it feels like fall today – global warming is obviously a lie.
  • @ttte tim hortons gave me half a coffee with too much sugar.
  • @ttte Potholes are bad!
  • @ttte Stamps taste gross.
  • @ttte Kids these days are too loud.

89 Tag Lines

The system that powers this weblog was recently upgraded with a new open-source weblog platform (because the world needed one more). What separates this weblog system from all of the others? The clever name: Blörg.

In the process of the upgrade, I’ve retired the randomly rotating tag-line/sub-title in the header of the site. Looking through the tag-lines in the old database, we accumulated 89 phrases. Most are insipid, however, I do think there are some flashes of accidental genius amongst the stupidity, embarrassing earnestness, and inside jokes.

For posterity, here are the 89 Acts of Volition weblog tags lines, all used at some point in the last five years:

  • machine readable
  • There’s nothing funny about Comic Sans.
  • The Axis of Awesome
  • Standing on the shoulders of giants
  • Not too strong in the maths.
  • Equal parts consumption and production
  • ad hoc ad hominem ad nauseam
  • Truths, albeit insignificant.
  • Hack the Casbah
  • AOL Keyword: Awesome
  • grace over karma
  • My ass is as smart as any.
  • I hate Winnipeg
  • “Tune the FM in to static and pretend its the sea” ― John K. Samson, The Weakerthans
  • be the change that you wish to see in the world
  • end-times = near
  • Objectivity is a lie.
  • Up with Metric Time! 10 Hours a Day!
  • It’s hip to be square.
  • Hey, that’s a spade!
  • if ($road==’diverged in yellow wood’ && $road==’less traveled’) { $the_difference=’all made’ }
  • I’m tired – let’s bring back that whole slacker thing.
  • It’s all about the Pentiums, baby!
  • “Beware of all enterprises that require new clothes.” ― Henry David Thoreau
  • Everyone loves the future.
  • Jesus was a punk.
  • Quit while you’re ahead.
  • Adhocracy Now!
  • my virtual cup runneth over
  • My mom cleans my house.
  • extra ordinary
  • get rich slow
  • Great is the enemy of good
  • zip zap zipadee doo
  • Better. Brighter. Tougher.
  • all about alliteration
  • bah, humbug
  • want amidst plenty
  • I like to meat new people.
  • They pelted us with rocks and garbage!
  • I’m your internet hero.
  • Robots are people too
  • Spammers go to hell
  • Where quality of life is measured in MHz
  • I only wear free t-shirts
  • Dupe! No Digg!
  • Ok, this is lame.
  • Terrorists Win!
  • It’s never been a better time to be a nerd.
  • It’s still morning on the Internet
  • I figured out what’s wrong with life: it’s other people.
  • Stupidity is much the same the world over.
  • Language can be unsuitable for younger viewers. Use caution – they are our future.
  • Now with more links.
  • Relax. Take your pants off.
  • Lately, the only thing keeping me from being a serial killer is my distaste for manual labour.
  • Pamplemousse. Biftek. Poutine. Dindon. Chauve-souris.
  • What are you going to do about apathy? Not much.
  • Virtual thoughts.
  • A site for, but not about, endorsed by, or even moderately related to, Phil Hartman. R.I.P.
  • Not, in any way, affiliated with Chicken Soup for the Soul.
  • Random Thoughts. Pumpernickel, for example.
  • Formatted text from (un)formatted minds.
  • Insert snappy subtitle here.
  • Everything in its right place.
  • Driven by contempt for you the reader.
  • Are we being sarcastic? We don’t even know anymore.
  • sarcasm is cowardly
  • Be excellent to each other.
  • Publishing without deadlines since August, 2000.
  • beware the fish
  • Gazing at your navel.
  • Pioneering the utopian one-pair-of-shoes-per-person future.
  • Save often, kids.
  • No coins please.
  • Nascent guruism
  • You can’t coach height.
  • The human head weighs eight pounds.
  • may cause shrinkage
  • Who’s the bully now!?
  • We promise nothing.
  • A good chew and peanuts too.
  • kind of like that Alanis Morissette song
  • Free Sklyarov!
  • Like waggling a big beef in front of a hungry dog.
  • Was it Eliot’s toilet I saw?
  • So Say We All

Tim Banks

A good friend of mine, Peter Rukavina, has been writing on his weblog (in various incarnations) for about eight years. I’ve always enjoyed reading what Peter writes. Over the years, Peter has written a variety of posts about Tim Banks. Tim is the President and CEO of the APM Group, a development and construction company.

While the things Peter wrote about Mr. Banks were seldom flattering, they were not unreasonable. In November of 2005, Peter wrote about how Banks had asked the Mayor of Charlottetown to remove Councillor Kim Devine from a planning committee because she had what Banks called an “obstructionist attitude.”

Last month, a few of us were on our way to a public meeting about a downtown development plan hosted by the City of Charlottetown. On our way to the meeting, Peter snapped this photo of an illegally parked vehicle that was easily recognized by most of us as Tim Banks’ car (the vanity license plate bears the company name, APM). As a courtesy, Peter did not include Mr. Banks’ name when he posted the photo. Many locals would recognize the vehicle, but without a name, it wouldn’t show up if people were to search for Mr. Banks’ name online.

Apparently Mr. Banks was not pleased about this. As Peter recounts in some detail, Mr. Banks walked up to him in a coffee shop, confronted him about the car photo, and then “took a swing at the full cup of coffee in my hand, spilling it across the counter and over my newspaper and breakfast.”

Peter notified the police about the incident, which is completely appropriate. I’m saddened to see a good friend and good writer have to fear this kind of repercussion to having written online. If a traditional newspaper journalist had published the photo and was similarly assaulted, this kind of behaviour wouldn’t be be considered acceptable, nor should it be in Peter’s case.

This may not be of interest to many readers, being a local incident. However, I do think it should be of interest to anyone concerned about the ability of people to write and publish without fear of intimidation, no matter the degree.


Superbowl Sunday Sermon Suggestions

  • The Real Superbowl Holds the Blood of Jesus!
  • Jesus is My Quarterback
  • Jesus is My Coach
  • Jesus is My MVP
  • Jesus is My Half-Back
  • Hail the real Mary
  • The Quarterback Sneak (into heaven)
  • Which End Zone are You Running For?
  • The Star of Our Half-Time Show: The real Prince
  • Bears, Colts, and Cloven Hooves
  • Peyton Manning: False Messiah

I Digg a Good Gaim

In the past few weeks I’ve found myself typing “gaim” when I mean to type “game” and adding an extra “g” when I type “dig(g)”. I’ve also typed “exit” into a few chat windows when I mean to leave.

Even my muscle-memory is turning nerdy.


Creative is not a noun

Pet peeve: people who use the word “creative” as a noun. Example:

“The ad will run on Friday, but the creative will be ready by Wednesday.”

If you say things like that, I don’t like you. Don’t bother offering justifications.

(disclosure: According to, “creative” can be used as a noun to describe a person who “displays productive originality” – I don’t like that either, but it’s not as bad)


Reviewing the Future of America

Future Soundtrack for America

I’ve written a review of the McSweeney’s book, The Future Dictionary of America, and the accompanying CD, Future Soundtrack for America.

As I state in the review, I’m a bit creeped-out by the politics and slightly-too-hip-ness of it all. That said, this is a good CD.

Here’s a sample definition from The Future Dictionary of America:

seven dollar socialist [$7 soh’-shul-ist] n. an activist, usually found in wealthy, liberal cities like San Francisco, whose high tax bracket income affords him or her the luxury of their rabid, liberal views. Ex.: an Ipod-carrying, Jetta-driving, organic-tomato-eating protester waving a placard reading Socialism Now while waiting in line to buy a $7 sandwich at Bi-Rite. – NOAH HAWLEY

Read the review for more.