Browsing All Posts filed under »Section G: Journalism«

Calling all “Fred’s Maid” fans

October 11, 2013


A while back I wrote about the little maid in the 1953 Christmas classic, A Christmas Carol. With only 42 seconds on screen, and no dialogue, this shy little woman has captured the hearts of thousands of fans. Unfortunately, these fans have never had a name to associate with their crush. Well, now we do, […]

Little fire on the prairie

October 1, 2012


We chased our first fire engine a few days ago. This turns out to be one of my responsibilities as managing editor of a small town newspaper in the Canadian Prairies. Chasing fire engines. As hard-hitting journalists out for the latest scoop we’re supposed to make sure we’re first on the scene so that we […]

V8 Juice and Canadian unity

March 9, 2012


In 1994, during a crisis in Canadian unity, one food manufacturing company quietly stepped in to help ward off an imminent invasion from the United States. In this post we salute V8 Juice for helping to keep Canada a sovereign nation.

Chicken art and Canadian politics

March 5, 2012


At the end of “When Pookas attack,” I intended to link to an article I did back in 1997 called “Chicken art and Canadian unity” —  a review on Rob Thompson’s art performance piece in which he protested treatment of commercially-bred chickens by putting two people in a cage for a week. But then I […]

Internet ads and Burma Shave

February 27, 2012


Reprinted from an old column I once had on advertising. This was actually one of a series on Internet advertising and CTRs (Click Through Rates). It’s been modified somewhat to include necessary information from the previous pieces leading up to this, and to make it a bit more understandable to a lay audience. ___________________________________ As […]

I’ll impact you

February 7, 2012


From a piece I did three years ago. ———————————– A search of Google News shows that in the last 24 hours there have been almost 800 articles with the phrase “impacted on.” That means that in one day alone, almost 800 news stories have gone out of their way to irritate me. That’s a lot […]

Mummers and pagans and wrens, oh my!

February 2, 2012


Mummering is an ancient tradition, although nobody is quite sure what the tradition might be. In any event, there are worse things you could do -- like plunging through the ice into frigid water while playing a children's game.

Local angles generally obtuse

December 12, 2011


Local angles can be good. People like to read about events in their own neighbourhood, city, and country. Even national and international stories can be put into perspective by focusing on the local ramifications. But sometimes there just isn’t a local angle, and efforts to provide one can be outright embarrassing. Take the case of […]

St. Catharines traffic signals: crazy or insane. Discuss.

January 21, 2011


This is just my latest piece for the Standard. I’m sneaking it in as a blog post because I’ve not been posting much lately (and by “much,” or course, I mean “at all”). They changed my original title. I understand why, but I decided to sneak it back in here as the title of the […]

Jim Mackin — RIP

December 20, 2010


Recycling is good, right? Well, recently I heard from the son of the man this post is about. He found it on an old blog I kept a number of years ago. On rediscovering the blog I found a number of pieces I wouldn’t mind reprinting here, and what better to start with than this […]

The Great Bathtub Hoax of H. L. Mencken

July 1, 2010


It’s Dominion Day here (which, in metric is “Canada Day”) and I’ll be taking today off. It’s quite likely I’ll be going silent for a few days, in fact, so I’m leaving with something I wrote a few years back for an editors’ site. Henry Louis (H. L.) Mencken (September 12, 1880, Baltimore – January […]

Submit your “Fitch Award” design now! Win nothing!

April 20, 2010


Good technical writing is so rare, we need an award for it. So I created one.