Thursday, June 09, 2011

Due to my recent newspaper hiatus, I haven't been reading it very much when it does come on Thursday or Sunday, but this morning, I made sure to retrieve my $50 paper from the sidewalk. Turns out today this annual feature was published.

Last year I commented on the article:

The categories with TU wins last year made me uncomfortable, and this year it got worse. What will be added in next year? Oh, I know! Best Place to See a Concert: 1) Times Union Center; 2) Times Union Parking Lot; 3) Times Union Conference Room. Times Union rooftop came in a close fourth. I am not specifically criticizing the writers listed, and I have enjoyed Paul Grondahl’s work very much (although John Grey’s Wednesday column in the Troy Record should land him somewhere in the top three; on its own, it makes the subscription price for that paper worth it) but the print journalist, website, and blogger categories should be removed from the survey. It’s shameless.

It's pretty much the usual. Oddly chosen categories, lots of chains, and TU dominating the journalism and online categories. I wonder what motivates someone to bother filling out the survey when the responses are "Home Depot" and "CVS." Save your digits - or your ink. But it's the TU's fault, really. Naturally big boxes are going to win. Main Street Hardware's single location in some corner of the Capital District is not going to get as many votes as Lowe's with a presence in every town. The survey is so unscientific it's laughable.

Then, one of the winning pictures is of the circus. Bad enough that it is shameless TU promotion, but does the event have to be the circus! Why did I bring in this rag to assault me? Online, I likely would not have clicked through to see the picture.

To counteract the awfulness, go here and donate to a worthy cause! It's MHRHS' Paws in the Park. I am not walking this year (I did last year, and I was looking forward to doing it again. I was excited to meet Oliver) but circumstances have conspired to be otherwise. However, my nephew is an officer on the board, and he's walking. Sam and Sophie (and Rudy, from heaven) say thanks!

Finally, here's an article I might have skipped if I didn't have the "paper" today. I have a habit, or a characteristic (I'm not sure how to describe it) that is a feature (to me) or I'm told, sometimes a bug (to others): I don't perceive television commercials. I turn off both my vision and my hearing as soon as they come on. I don't shut down exactly, I slip into my own thoughts and can't remember a thing about the advertisement. They are completely tuned out.

The only time this isn't true is if the ad features a dog or cat, in more than a cursory manner. For example, currently I love the commercial with the wiry dog who puts a bone in a safe deposit box and can't stop thinking about it. I also always paid attention to the one with the lab puppy singing "I ain't got bugs on me." However, even for commercials such as those, I don't remember the product, or it takes many repetitions before I do. (Right now, I can remember they were for insurance and flea medication respectively, but I couldn't tell you which company or brand.)

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