Tonawanda News


June 7, 2013

We take this stuff too seriously

Tonawanda News — Among the things I half-learned recently:

The actress Amanda Bynes patronized a local trampoline park to bounce her troubles away, or maybe she didn’t. New Jersey is open for business but its governor, who has assiduously lost weight, so I hear, still looks like he hits the lasagna a little too hard.

There is an intriguing new way to contract throat cancer, or maybe there isn’t. State politicians in New York, some of them at least, are corrupt.

The Internal Revenue Service videotapes its employees’ dance parties. The Rolling Stones are back on the road, as is Paul McCartney, about to turn age 71. (After Brooklyn and Bonnaroo, he plays the new soccer stadium in Warsaw, Poland.)

It takes an Internet-enabled computer to follow all this stuff, whether I want it or not. Fortunately I have one in my pants pocket. As the alien played by John Lithgow once said on the television program “Third Rock from the Sun:” it’s none of my business, and I’m obsessed with it.

So, which came first, social media or the need for social media? The sheer mass of information available these days demonstrates the inadequacy of its delivery methods. Consider local television news, the 11 or so minutes before the sports and weather, an amalgam of damage done, videotape of stuff gone awry. Unless it’s a tearjerker of a privacy invasion, what is offered is a nightly litany of errors. Only the lack of snarky commentary differentiates it from “Tosh 2.0.”

Back in the early 1990s, I remember being in an evening graduate school class, and in walked a student with a device on his hip we used to call a pager or beeper. On this night it was for following the progress of a Sabres game (someone was relaying him updated scores), and he employed hand signals to inform me of goals scored and the like.

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  • Tucker, Barbara.jpg TUCKER: Oh, the joys of Sound Off Never thought the words "Thank goodness for Sound Off" would ever be printed here.

    July 26, 2014 1 Photo

  • adamczyk, ed.jpg ADAMCZYK: And now for something completely different... Last weekend I attended a local movie theater (a plushy, posh experience; they design these places now to get you out of your living room and away from your home electronics) to watch the sun set on the British Empire.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • wallace, amy.jpg WALLACE: Too much information? Is there such a thing as TMI or too much information anymore? Some might say yes.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • duvall, eric.jpg DUVALL: On reading and the lack thereof It was surprising to me a few weeks ago when a friend asked a group of us to estimate how many books we have each read over the last five years. The English teacher said 200 and he far and away led the pack. I was probably the median and my number was 20-25.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • confer, bob.jpg CONFER: A Con-Con would be a con game

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • duvall, eric.jpg DUVALL: Conflict in Ukraine now a concern of global proportions It seems increasingly clear Ukrainian separatists, with the help from the Russian military, are responsible for the tragedy. They, of course, have denied it. They've also denied access to the crash site to international investigators seeking to recover the dead and determine what happened. That's not something the innocent party does.

    July 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • ADAMCZYK: Personal development, rendered in steel Accepting the premise that everyone needs to fill the same amount of time every day (24 hours, every day), some people use theirs rebuilding things, tangible things, and thus fulfill a few intangible goals.

    July 18, 2014

  • WALLACE: Festival season is underway Summer is the season of fairs and festivals. From Canal Fest in the Tonawandas to the Allentown Art Festival and Italian Heritage Festival in Buffalo to the Erie County Fair in Hamburg, the Western New York area has no shortage of things to do with the family over the summer.

    July 17, 2014

  • duvall, eric.jpg DUVALL: King George's abdication leaves many questions I've covered Niagara County politics for 10 years and it's been a fascinating -- and often infuriating -- experience. With the news the man known with equal parts respect and cynicism as "King George" is walking away it's about to get more interesting.

    July 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Canal Fest, here we come This column should be titled "Roads and Streets." First of all, Meadow Drive is finally open. Although it took very long to be completed, it's beautiful. Riding by the other day brought into focus how many people will use this to cut across town. One less thing for residents to complain about.

    July 12, 2014