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Good evening people. I’m finished with tonight’s entry early, and I’ve been feeling tired today so I think I’ll turn in early. Tomorrow I head over to the bay area for some customer visits, spend a night, and return late Wednesday. Should be a nice short jaunt, and I think it’ll be good to get out of the office for a while. Other than that, I recently added a season pass for the original Star Trek series to my TiVo. As if my TOS (TiVo-obligation syndrome) wasn’t a crippling enough affliction – I continue to pile on the time-wasting shows. Anyway, I love the original Star Trek, it’s so awesome. I have no idea why I’m writing about this. Here’s some more junk.

When I was a kid, I can remember my parents letting me listen to “my” music sometimes when we were on long trips in the Ford LTD. Thinking about that now, I don’t think I’m gonna be one of those parents. I mean, “my” music back that consisted mainly of bands like Depeche Mode, Pet Shop Boys, Ah-Ha, and the like. A far cry from my folks’ parental tastes for John Denver and Neil Diamond. Just thinking about them making that aural sacrifice and putting up with Casio-driven masterpieces like Speak and Spell really means a lot. Heck, Sharaun and I fight about what we’re going to listen to in the car on a regular basis. No sir, I’m afraid my kids are going to listen to whatever I’m listening to. Maybe by then they’ll have independent audio for each car occupant and this problem will resolve itself… but if not, my kids better learn to like Depeche Mode.

Am I the only one who doesn’t see the newsworthiness of this whole feeding-tube thing? Maybe I just don’t understand the long-term ramifications of the ruling, I’m willing to accept that. But this story has had top-billing in all major US news outlets for days now. There’s nothing more newsworthy going on in the world right now? Aren’t we still at war in Iraq? Doesn’t [insert country of choice here] have nukes? When I go to the BBC’s webpage, they have these stories. I wonder if American news is really as tunnel-visioned as it sometimes seems? Seems like we care more about car chases or the latest “amber alert” kid taken from an Alabama Wal Mart than the current state of world affairs. What, Iran refuses to stop weaponizing their supposedly fuel-grade radioactives? Who gives a crap, Demi might be pregnant with Ashton’s baby!! Tensions between China and Taiwan are higher than ever before? Booooring, did you hear about that kid in South Carolina who got suspended from middle school for wearing a confederate flag shirt?, I’m incredulous!

The other day the guest on the Daily Show was Tom Fenton, a former CBS news anchor who’s recently written a book about the what he sees as the sad state of news media in the United States. The interview was really interesting, and the following quote really says what I’m trying to get at here, so I’ll just go right to it:

I don’t think, at this time when our government tells us that there are people out there trying to blow us up or get their hands on radiological or biological or chemical weapons, that we can afford the luxury anymore of having a dumbed-down electorate.

Tom Fenton on the Daily Show

Of course, Stewart came back with the devil’s-advocate defense that the networks are just playing to the ratings and giving the dumb audiences what they want. Changing his voice and playing the role of some network news programming bigwig, he said something along the lines of, “If the people would rather see a truck on fire than what’s going on in Afghanistan, follow the truck!” Anyway, Fenton was a good sport – but I think the underlying message of the interview is pretty relevant. Especially since people are dying every day, and not because their feeding tubes are being debated in the Supreme Court. Well, I didn’t intend for this to become and anti-war thing, but while I’m here I might as well offer up one more bleeding-heart link. Thanks for listening.

And, thanks to the power of the internet – if you’re interested, you can actually watch the entire interview here.

With that, I’ll call it a night. Until tomorrow’s away-from-home entry, goodnight.

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