Who uses it: Stephen Colbert
What it means: A quality of truthfulness that transcends contradictory facts
How you can use it: Welcome to America, 2006.
The American Dialect Society actually chose "truthiness" as its Word of the Year for 2005. Today's term is thanks to Mom and to Jen Lechner, who both suggested it. If you are not yet watching The Colbert Report, you should reconsider your viewing habits.
I have been working flat out since the holidays ended -- so much that I found myself fantasizing about a vacation earlier this week, which is a little ridiculous. Especially since what sparked the fantasy was getting a flyer in the mail offering me a week in Orlando for only $199, in exchange for attending a sales presentation about new time-share properties. What can I say? It was a bad-weather day; I looked at the photograph of this new Marriott property and thought, "Ooh, Florida for two hundred bucks... I could sit through a sales pitch..."
And then I came to my senses and remembered that I don't even like Florida, and I particularly don't like Orlando, which doesn't even have a beach.
Uh, but I do like large European cities, so if you hear of any special deals in exchange for time-share pitches in Vienna or Prague, pass 'em on. (And Schulzes, April in Paris is looking awfully attractive right now.)
What I Read This Week
Deborah Crombie, In a Dark House. Duncan Kincaid's investigation of a series of arson fires intertwines with his girlfriend and former partner's investigation of a missing persons case. This is the most recent book in the series, written about ten years after the book I read last week, and I liked being able to leap forward in the characters' lives -- it'll take some of the suspense out of the intervening books, when I read them, but I don't mind.
Eugene Carr, Wired for Culture: How E-Mail is Revolutionizing Arts Marketing. This was the seminar I attended on Monday, and the two big things I learned from it were: 1) e-mails are far more effective marketing tools than static websites, so a promotional website should be first and foremost a giant funnel for collecting e-mail addresses; and 2) e-mail subscribers like to hear from you at regular intervals, even if you don't have a whole lot to say. Because of my various clients, I subscribe to about a dozen authors' mailing lists, and not one of them sends out regular mailings. My client -- Joseph Finder, author of the bestselling Paranoia and Company Man, and if you don't read his books, you ought to -- will be, so sign up for his newsletter here.
Louisa May Alcott, Little Women. Little Women is one of a handful of books I reread every year, because every year, I read it with different eyes. The last couple of years I've read it, it's seemed horribly sad, mainly because it makes me sad for Miss Alcott herself. She never got her own Professor Bhaer.