Our local newspaper, the Times Union, has recently started this Reader Network, abbreviated TURN. The premise: We want to get feedback from real people in real time and to involve readers in our coverage. Once you register to join the Reader Network, Times Union reporters and editors will send you periodic (not more than once a week) e-mails asking for your input on a variety of subjects.
We may ask general questions like "How are we doing?" or more specific ones like "We are writing a story about people who collect stamps. Do you know someone we should contact?" or "The President signed new tax legislation today. How will the changes affect you?"
I don't know why I signed up - I'm shy, retiring, and have no opinions on anything, as you well know - but sign up I did. So the second thing they send out by e-mail (don't remember the first) was to ask about how gypsy moths were affecting our lives. It so happened that I did have a little tale to tell.
In this past Sunday's paper, there's an article "Small size, big appetite and bad manners." There was a sidebar piece, "Bugged by caterpillars," with four little stories. Mine is the fourth: "We were away in Oneonta this past weekend. Just as we were pulling out of our parking space, a gypsy moth caterpillar landed on the windshield, falling from a tree. We figured it would fly off when we need the speed limit on I-88, but it tenaciously hung on. Then I took water from a bottle, thinking to wash the ugly bugger away - no good. Only an increase in speed finally dislodged the creature."
I went to church yesterday, and was surprised the number of people who read the Sunday morning paper before church, or at least get to page A-8. *** Blogger was working well enough to download that lovely picture above yesterday, but then nothing else, despite numerous attempts. This morning, I was able to download the picture below: Then I decided it was too large and fuzzy, so I attempted to downloaded again in a smaller version. NG - frustrating. It's from the Library of Congress, BTW. *** hexakosioihexekontahexaphobia - what a great word! I wonder if those national spelling bee kids could spell it.