word on journalism
May 8, 2009
The Fat Lady Sings, Off-Key, Drools
At about this time every year, like
the swallows to Capistrano or the buzzards
to Hinckley, Ohio, the WORD migrates
to its summer musing grounds at the
sanitarium —St. Mumbles Home for
the Terminally Verbose.
The reason is clear, and never moreso
than as this season —the WORD's
13th —peters out.
It's been a fraught year of high palaver
and eye-popping transition, both good
and not-so-much. An interminable presidential
campaign saga finally did end, and in
extraordinary and historic fashion.
Meanwhile, the bottom and everything
that's below the bottom fell out of
the economy, with families, homes, entire
industries and —of particular
interest to WORDsters and the civic-minded
—dozens of daily newspapers ("I
don't so much mind that newspapers are
dying--it's watching them commit suicide
that pisses me off." --Molly Ivins).
. . all evaporating. What replaces them,
from the individual to the institutional
to the societal? Are we looking at a
future of in-depth Tweeting?
As any newsperson or firehorse knows,
it's hard to turn your back on day-to-day
catastrophe --we just have to look at
the car wreck. But even the most deranged
and driven need a rest. As philosopher
Lilly Tomlin once observed, "No
matter how cynical you become, it's
never enough to keep up."
So this morning, as a near-frost hovered
over northern Utah, the unmarked van
pulled into the driveway and the gentle,
soft-spoken men in the white coats rolled
the WORD out of bed and into a straitjacket
for the usual summer trip to St. Mumbles,
where the blathering one will be assigned
a hammock and fed soothing, healthy
foods --like tapioca, dog biscuits and
salmon --while recharging the essential
muscles of cynicism, outrage, sarcasm,
social engagement and high-mindedness,
in preparation for the next edition.
Summer well, friends.
up! Comment on the WORD at
and suggestions --printable and otherwise
--always welcome. "There are no
Hyde Park drivers warned to look out
for scooters on the road
April 9, 2009 | HYDE PARK -- The City Council
was warned by Sgt. John Italasano about scooters that aren't
required to be registered with the state to be legally driven.
"You're gonna have these guys
riding on the road and they don't need insurance. So if they
get in an accident, it's going to be a mess," Italasano
said in Wednesday's council meeting.
He recently pulled over a pair on a scooter
because there were two people on it and the back tire was
about to go flat, he said. He also noted that there was no
Italasano said he asked the owner why he
didn't have the scooter registered. The owner told him he
didn't have to, the state didn't require it for this kind.
Skeptical, Italasano phoned motor vehicles
who, he said, called it an "E-bike."
Italasano described the scooter's features:
49.9 cc, electric motor, detachable pedals. He said the owner
told him that the scooter can go 20 mph. A man is selling
them exclusively in Brigham City for $2,000 each, Italasano
The council also spoke about a yield sign
near 450 North and 700 East, where one house is currently
"It's aggravating now that everyone
has to yield for one house, one car," said Councilman
Mayor David Kooyman said there isn't much
the council can do. Once the house is finished the yield sign
will probably be replaced with a stop sign, he said.