Thursday, July 18, 2024
Michael Stone Online


From Typewriter to Mouse: The Privilege of Online Commenting—There’s no doubt it’s election season in Powder Springs. Candidates are updating their campaign websites. Yard signs inform voters of the Nov. 8 election date and offer suggestions of who to vote for. The front page of the Marietta Daily Journal reads: “Incumbent faces challengers.” But there’s something new thrown into the mix this election season, and that’s the website you’re reading right now. The articles and columns published by Patch thus far on the candidates for mayor and the two at-large council seats don’t seem to be what people are talking about around town. Rather, it’s the comments posted by site users.

Should Obama Push for Legalization of Marijuana, Gay Marriage?–The U.S. took a big hop to the left in Tuesday’s elections. Voters in three states—Maine, Maryland and Washington—approved same-sex marriage, joining the lot that already includes Connecticut, the District of Columbia, Iowa, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York and Vermont. Meanwhile, though it remains illegal in Minnesota, voters there rejected a constitutional amendment to ban it. (Aggregation pieces on breaking national news that include a question headline are good for giving local readers a voice to discuss the issue at hand.)

The Snow Words We’re Sick of Hearing—Anyone sick of hearing anything that even remotely correlates to snow, icy roads, school closures and the like? Whenever a decent amount of snow descends from the heavens, we begin to run through the motions: watch around-the-clock news programs; instinctively hoard bread, milk and eggs; say phrases like, “Wow, would you look at all that snow?”

Two Rolls Across the Interstate and I’m Glad to Be Alive—When you switch lanes in hopes of going faster, the new one always seems to slow down as soon as you cross over. Immediately after I moved into the far right lane on Interstate 20 near the Thornton Road exit Tuesday, the line of cars practically stopped—at the head of the line, an 18-wheeler was slowly chugging up the incline of the road. But the slow-go was soon to be the least of my worries. BAM!

Will You Live for 100 Years?—About seven in 1,000 people live to be a centenarian, or someone who is at least 100 years old, according to an estimate in the academic journal Science. You have a 50 percent chance for every year beyond that, and living from 100 to 110 “is like tossing heads 10 times in a row,” James Vaupel, director of the Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research in Rostock, Germany, told Science. Well, Besse Cooper must have a doubled-headed quarter.