Winter vacation's over. Back to school with Fritinancy!Geography
Ever wanted to live on your namesake street? This nifty little app identifies all North American thoroughfares that share "2,000 or so common girl and boy names." Who knew there were more than 900 streets named Nancy? I've never seen even one. (Requires Google Earth download, which is so very worth it.) (Via Kottke.)
That New York Times interactive map of Netflix rentals is fun but surprisingly repetitious: In city after city, people tended to rent last year's Oscar nominees. Much more fun: Slate's zoom lens on the most "eclectic," "idiosyncratic," and just plain weird ZIP code patterns.
This year, all the buzz at the Consumer Electronics Show was about e-readers and 3D TV. Here's what they were talking about at CES 2000 and 1990. Why did anyone ever care about making household appliances "talk" to each other? (Via OrangeXW.)
Winnipeg-based The Beaver, the 90-year-old magazine of Canadian history, is changing its name to Canada's History to accommodate search engines and deter double entendres. That leaves fans of The Beaver and The Walrus ("Canada's Best Magazine") without a reliable "Wally and the Beav" joke. The National Post lists a bunch of titles that would have been preferable to (yawn) Canada's History, including Castor (French for "beaver"); C Is for Canada, Eh; and Stuff That Happened in Canada. (Via someone on Twitter; I apologize for not remembering who!)
"Of this year’s 34 [college football] bowl games, only a handful did not carry the name of a commercial entity." On the Button, the blog of naming consultancy A Hundred Monkeys, says the most ridiculous name is San Diego County Credit Union Poinsettia Bowl.
McSweeney's Internet Tendency presents Fragments from Balloon Boy! The Musical. You've gotta love a lyric that rhymes "Mayumi" with "So sue me."
Most relevant identity work of the decade, Brand New's year-by-year recap of logos that made an impression. Pets.com and Napster make the list for 2000.
RANdom CAPITALization and other secrets of angry letter writing!!!!!!! The Washington Post's Gene Weingarten delicately responds to jerks who sign their letters "An American Patriot." (Via Craig Paridy.)
Trademark lawyer Bob Cumbow has commented on this blog from time to time, usually to set your correspondent straight on legal matters. Now, thanks to the Society for the Promotion of Good Grammar, a k a SPOGG, I'm pleased to link to a collection of Bob's essays on language. Although the essays were written for the Washington State Bar Association, non-lawyers will find them readable, valuable, and often amusing.