Thursday, September 6, 2007

Why Are You Reading This Blog When You Could be Reading a Really Interesting Blog?

The topic of this here post is Blogs That I Think are Really Cool. More specifically, these are some of my favorite blogs that – unlike the L&TM5K – cleave consistantly to one specific topic, and can therefore be reliably interesting to their reading audience. Unlike the L&TM5K. Whatever.

But first, I would be remiss in not announcing:

The Thursday Quiz Winners

Newcomer Jessica nailed the quiz, earning a perfect score and a gold star, her first.
Rex Parker took the silver star, having placed now in both Thursday quizzes. Similarly, last week’s champion Rebel came right back to claim the blue star this week, but it will be cold comfort as apparently she is going to hell. She said it, not me.

Take this week's quiz yourself, here. Answers are in the comments section. Want to compete? Come back next Thursday for next week’s quiz. Bring your A-game.

OK, Where Were We?

Oh, right, topical blogs. I’ll start, like the self-indulgent jerk I am, by plugging my own two single-subject efforts. Michael Reads the Bible is the notes from my na├»ve but thorough reading of Christian scripture. I frankly think it’s a blast. After all, who wouldn’t want to know what a random untrained, uninformed, irreverent guy had to say about notoriously complex sacred texts? Oh, nobody would? Hmm, I guess that explains the lack of traffic.

There is also State of the Craft, in which I write about my quilts and my various adventures in the world of quilting. Even if you aren’t yourself interested in quilting, I can confidently say that you would find State of the Craft somewhat more interesting than many of the other quilting blogs out there. Plus, there are pretty pictures.

But let’s get serious, shall we?

  • You may have heard of “PostSecret.” It’s the blog that invites you to create a homemade postcard confessing your deepest, most carefully hidden secret, and send it to a guy who will post it on the internet for all the world to see. Anonymously, natch. The cards are by turns funny, tragic, touching, horrifying, beautiful, and ridiculous. It’s the internet at its best.

  • Indexed” is a brand new discovery for me. Venn diagrams, economic graphs, and the other visual tools of social science applied to real life for a change. It’s like cartoons for dorky smart people. Might that be you, gentle reader?

  • Along with charts and graphs, you’ve got to have maps. Doug Greenfield has been keeping a Map of the Week listserv for years, and is finally putting the collection into blog form for general consumption. He’s gone back to the beginning and is entering all of the alumni Maps of the Week, so there’s already plenty there to browse through. From crude found sketch maps to elaborate online interactive extravaganzas, it’s a playground for your inner cartography geek. You know you have one.

  • The Rag and Bone Blog is a neverending parade of really cool stuff from and related to book arts. In fact, if you never know what I mean by “book arts,” browsing this blog would give you a pretty good idea. It has had the good taste to feature the work of Mrs. 5000, so you know it must be pretty excellent.

  • When he’s not rocking the Thursday Quiz, Rex Parker Does the NYT Crossword Puzzle. You really, really ought to look at this if you have any interest in crossword puzzles whatsoever. In fact, check it out even if you don’t. Dude does for crossword puzzles what Pauline Kael did for movies. It’s a thing of beauty. His collection of campy paperback novels is pretty boss, too.

  • If you live in Portland, you ought to bookmark Amanda Fritz’s blog. Whether or not you agree with Amanda’s progressive populism (although I usually do, myself), you should appreciate the sheer volume of footwork and number-crunching she does on your behalf. She’ll tell you much more about the Rose City than the ‘gonian and the Tribune put together, although she’ll flag articles for you when one of them accidentally print something important. (Kidding. I actually like the Trib.) The world is her gonzo civics project.

  • Also for you Rose Citizens: Willamette Week’s “local cut” covers our local indie music scene in great detail. Often excruciating detail. But even if you just skim it, you can walk around feeling all in-the-know.

So many blogs, so little time. But I’m getting tired, and you’re getting bored. So I’ll catch you later.


Rex Parker said...

No, *you're* boss.

Thanks for the plug. Pauline Kael is a very nice comparison. Thanks for not saying "Michael Medved" or "Rex Reed."


Anonymous said...

These are cool. I am going to have some fun reading. Big merci for them!

Anonymous said...

I am disappointed that my blog is not the list. I always reliably post about one topic: me! And who wouldn't find that interesting? ;)

Anonymous said...

I heart venn diagrams

Rex Parker said...

PS thanks for commenting regularly at the paperbacks site. Makes putting those covers up so much more fun when other people get in on the commentary.


Rebel said...

Yeah... I missed good old Titus, which is a sin because I even had a few versus highlighted in my student bible. Titus 2:7-9 "In everything set them an exmple by doing what is good. In your teaching show integrity, seriousness and soundness of speech that cannot be condemned so that thos who oppose you may be ashamed because they have nothing bat to say about us."

Never made it through Habakkuk though.

Michael5000 said...

@Rex: It's sincere. I'm amazed, incidentally, not only with your thoughtful, fair, and lucid puzzle analysis, but the fact that you do it EVERY STINKIN' DAY. Disciplined, you are.

@Boo: I am trying to remember how to say "you're welcome" in French, and totally choking.

@Mydog: I for one always find your adventures highly diverting, and hereby heartily endorse your blog. Are you going to cover the day-ruining misadventure from last week? Or is it too icky to be funny?

@Chuck: I am somehow not surprised. Homework assignment: compare and contrast the CDX and L&TM5K using Venn Diagrams. Submit as .jpg.

@Rebel: I guess one could say in support of Titus that it's OK to be holier-than-thou when you are actually, like, IN THE BIBLE.

I'll let you know what's up in Habakkuk. Gimme a year or two, though.

Dug said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Dug said...

Dude thanks for the "shout out". I hope that last sentence was sufficiently hip. I've been mostly out of reach of the internet for the last week so I didn't catch this post right away. You've put me blog in some pretty awesome company! Look for more MOTW updates in another day or two.