17 Sep 2010 9:20 am   //   Filed under: Photos

Stormy weather in Park Slope

A quick but severe wind storm felled a bunch of trees in Brooklyn yesterday, including a big one in front of my church. Update: It was a tornado! Also, the church sustained damage to the stained glass windows, the roof, the belfry, and the cross on the roof (which blew off). Debris blew into the church through the busted window, reaching all the way to the altar. I’m told some members of the church helped clean the place up and insurance is covering the damage.

10th Street.
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16 Sep 2010 8:21 am   //   Filed under: Technology

Your Facebook status will get you robbed. Uh, really?

Computers are scary! Eye strain, Internet addiction, identity theft, not to mention the fact that technology makes us isolated and alone. And now this: Burglars are monitoring your Facebook status, and will break in when you’re away.

Wait a minute. That makes no sense.

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12 Sep 2010 6:55 pm   //   Filed under: Bicycles

Today’s bike ride: NYC Century

Today I set a personal record for the most miles biked in a single day: 127. I rode the NYC Century Bike Tour today—all 102 miles of it—and biked to and from the Central Park start/finish line from my apartment in Brooklyn. There are a couple of ways I could have made this ride easier—including choosing the alternate start location of Prospect Park, rather than Central Park—but I wanted the challenge of the extra miles. As a bonus, I got to enjoy a pre-dawn, solo warm-up ride through the empty city at 5 a.m. on Sunday.

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11 Sep 2010 2:08 pm   //   Filed under: In the news

Getting it right

Today I’m thinking about a few hours I spent on a military base on September 11, 2001. I was into my second week on the job as a news reporter for The Carlisle Sentinel newspaper in Pennsylvania.

We watched the footage on CNN in the newsroom for a few minutes, then I was sent to gather reporting from one of our local military bases for the September 12 paper. Ultimately I contributed quotes and facts to three stories as part of the paper’s reporting team. One story was about the military, another about churches, the third about schools. Nine years later, the parts of those stories that stand out most to me are the quotes from the military professors I interviewed at the U.S. Army War College in Pennsylvania. Keep in mind these quotes all came within a few hours of the attacks:

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10 Sep 2010 10:00 am   //   Filed under: New York is different, Photos

Shine on

Just an ordinary parking structure…

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6 Sep 2010 10:36 pm   //   Filed under: Photos, Travel

Kisses for popcorn

I spent a long, lazy, perfect Labor Day weekend at Smith Mountain Lake, Virginia, with my brother, sister-in-law, and some friends. We stayed near a place called Smith Mountain Dock, which sells popcorn to children (and, um, us) for them to toss at the enormous carp that swim in the lake. The fish love this!

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2 Sep 2010 7:25 am   //   Filed under: Music, No right to be good, Technology

The joy of uncool

Yesterday Apple announced some new social networking features for iTunes as part of a new service called Ping. If you choose, you can show your friends what music you’re listening to.

Bad idea.

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28 Aug 2010 8:35 pm   //   Filed under: In the news, Photos

“Restoring Honor”

Who are the people of the Tea Party movement? Today I happened to be in Washington, D.C., at the same time as Glenn Beck’s “Restoring Honor” rally on the National Mall. My brother and I went out to see what it was all about. Here are some photos of the crowd.

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26 Aug 2010 8:00 am   //   Filed under: Media, TV

The new disinformation

Last week a survey that found 18% of Americans, when asked to name Barack Obama’s religion, incorrectly said he is Muslim. That’s up from 11% in 2009.

How could a growing number of people get a basic fact so wrong? I don’t believe it’s because 18% of Americans are fools. I think it’s because we are just beginning to see the effects of a radically new way of communicating. The strategy involves a mix of broadcasting and the Internet. Here’s the formula:
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24 Aug 2010 8:23 am   //   Filed under: In the news, New York is different

Me and the BBC

(Updated 8:19 p.m. ET) A producer from the BBC interviewed me Friday for a segment on the Islamic Center near Ground Zero. You can watch the video above or see it on the BBC News web site.
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