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The month in review here at The State You're In



9 things I underlined in a piece in the Times about always growing Florida by the always interesting Gary Mormino.

Apalachicola: '... so eerily perfect is almost feels Photoshopped.'

This giant, successful organization is built on temporary, mostly empty, largely unearned feel-good back pats, right?

What people in Florida do when it gets not hot.

Florida has more than 600 miles of beaches and over 93,000 homeless people.

The new St. Pete is not the old St. Pete, the New York Times confirms.

Florida is 'a museum of the weird that just happens to have a lot of electoral votes':

Host Brooke Gladstone says this as if these two things are unrelated when of course they are not. What Will Greenlee says about open records is irrefutable but also sort of an unsexy nonstarter in this ongoing conversation about the "weirdness" of the Sunshine State. What author and McArthur genius Karen Russell, meanwhile, says about the seasons, the way they don't change here, or at least the way they don't change here in the same way they do elsewhere, is worth some consideration.

Stand Your Ground is in the news again because of course it's in the news again and will be for as long as the law exists:

When Stand Your Ground comes up, I always think about Max Wesley Horn, who shot and killed a man at a street festival. He got off. That's a ways back. I was covering courts in Pasco. Since then, due to the murder of Trayvon Martin, the Tampa Bay Times has done the best work about SYG, and do read it all if you live in Florida, or even if you don't, starting with how its seed was a lie. Now this latest head-shaker out of a Wesley Chapel matinee of Lone Survivor. Read the law. Read it again. Read the language.

Thinking about not only why the Wesley Chapel movie theater shooting happened but why it happened where it happened:

The Times' Ben Montgomery last night tweeted two things that have been knocking around his head since the Lone Survivor Monday matinee at which an older ex-Tampa cop shot and killed a young father because of texting and popcorn. The first is David Foster Wallace's Kenyon College commencement speech, which in this context is worth reading, or re-reading, especially the parts concerning the grocery store and the SUVs. The second, though, is Charles Montgomery's secrets of the world's happiest cities.

30 things I underlined in a book called Bear Attacks.

What people are saying about the case of Curtis Reeves Jr. killing Chad Oulson at the movies because of texting and popcorn.

Two pictures that were great from the Times' Skip O'Rourke.

A group called Home Run Pinellas wants you to go to more Rays games so the team might have more reason to stay in St. Pete: ... it's past time to stop browbeating people about not going to enough games. It's not our fault.

Brooklyn just got a little more hipster — thanks to St. Pete.

Justin Bieber Justin Bieber Justin Bieber — but anyway, and more importantly, and not unrelated, here's something Ben Montgomery once wrote about mug shots.

18 more things I learned in my reading about bears.

Orlando photographer Bryan Soderlind says Orange Blossom Trail 'just feels ALIVE' and here's why.

Walker Evans' Florida photos from the early '40s and the words that ran with them.

Interesting. Why is Florida so interesting?

What's the Williamsburg of Tampa? Tim Burke says it's ... St. Pete.

Is Florida about to sell itself in a way it's never sold itself before?

That's saying a lot. Florida is tourism. Well, real estate, too. "I'm just sellin' orange juice," former Gov. Claude Kirk once said. Now current Gov. Rick Scott, who likes a round number, wants to lure 100 million tourists with 100 million bucks. Last year's Visit Florida budget: $63.5 million. The year before that: $54 million. Before that: $34.9 million. Before that: $31.9 million. Before that: $28.5 million. All this doesn't include the fancy, $2.8-million, South Carolina-like welcome signs that are coming to a few key state-border mile-markers. The Sunshine State is the Sell-Me State.

I've been doing some reading about the '20s of late.

[Last modified: Friday, January 31, 2014 5:48pm]


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