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All right everyone, the first column for Metro is up. I’m reasonably pleased with it as being forced to severely edit makes the writing a lot tighter. I think. I’ve been staring at it all Sunday so I’m not really sure what to think about it anymore. I’ll also be blogging starting this week over there – just getting some technical things hashed out – which is good, since I’ve been taking a break and now my brain is full.

Anyways, here’s the permalink to the Urban Compass column page on the Metro. I’ll have the blog link up as soon as there’s something to read there. 

So, it’s official – I’ve signed the papers and everything, and as of June 3rd, you’re going to start seeing a column from me occasionally in Metro Saskatoon. That’s right, I’m selling out. Part of the deal is that I move my glittering prose over to their blog. The hardest part about this decision was explaining to my parents that I’m going to be a published columnist on municipal politics. (‘Mom, Dad, I’ve been talking to politicians. And blogging. And doing podcasts. I’m sorry, I know you didn’t raise me this way.”) This may come as a terrible blow to you, but we all must keep a stiff upper lip and soldier through. (I’ve been watching an awful lot of Downton Abbey lately. The second season isn’t as good as the first, however. Too much sensationalism, not enough prejudiced old Dowager Countess.) However, they are going to be paying me for my efforts, which is nice, and they’ve also promised to edit with a light touch, so you’ll probably just be seeing fewer adverbs and no asides regarding BBC television shows. I’ll also still be over at ourYXE frothing about urbanism and city building, while striking fear into the hearts of city officials with my incisive and devastating attacks. My Twitter account is entirely within my jurisdiction so don’t expect to see much change there aside from blatant advertisements for the Metro column and frequent confirmation that I am not, indeed, short.

Since the Metro values things like brevity and putting photographs on blog posts, my 10,000 word missives summarizing the agenda are going to take a back seat – I’ll be highlighting things, of course, and doing a running commentary on Twitter as I read them, but no longer will I be achieving NaNoWriMo levels of wordery every month. Which, frankly, is a bit of a relief. I was starting to dread the task – and I know you guys really like them – but this will hopefully keep the best bits of snarkery without the accompanying drudgery. Plus, did I mention I’m getting paid?

I’ll have a link up redirecting everyone to Metro once I read through all my emails here and figure out the process. I know all 5 of you regular readers will appreciate this. Feel free to direct any ire towards the editor of Metro Saskatoon and/or public replies on Twitter. I will warn you though, I’ll only respond to the creative ones.

I am also posting things over at OurYXE along with a bunch of other cool people that you probably already know.

Grist has a piece on a home-built piano trike, which reminded me of the New York Times’ December video on the fate of a street piano. (Don’t watch the street piano one if you’re at work and possess a soft heart.) I love pianos, even though I never got past Grade 3 or 4.

The Atlantic Cities has a lovely profile on James Gulliver Hancock who has tasked himself with drawing urban compedia of various things – all the buildings in New York, or all the snow in Montreal, for example.

I’d like to thank everybody who booked a massage with Jenna — she says she’s had several new clients lately. I really appreciate it, and I hope you don’t regret my recommendation.

While you’re waiting for the next ourYXE podcast and/or me to finish reading the agenda, I recommend this podcast on jaywalking over at 99% Invisible. (I recommend all of 99% Invisible, it is always a pleasure to listen to.)