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By Samuel Stoddard

January 2000

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Sunday, January 30, 2000

RinkWorks has received public exposure in two areas recently that I am particularly proud of and would like to mention, in case you're interested in taking a look.

Master Developers is a new web site containing interviews with webmasters. I was asked to give an interview for it, and I did. Although the official launch date for the web site is not until February 2, 2000, the page is open and available to browse, and Sean Murphy, the webmaster of that site, gave the ok to start publicizing it. The base URL is; the direct URL to my interview is (I've also got a pull quote in the 1/20 press release under "Site News" which is itself an odd sort of thrill.)

The other mention will be a little harder to track down. The full text of the At-A-Glance Film Reviews review of 1938's You Can't Take It With You is quoted in the book Critical Approaches To Writing About Film, by John E. Moscowitz. The book is a pretty comprehensive guide to film criticism, containing chapters on style, types of criticism, and so forth. My review is on page 66, and I am proud that, while open to page 66, one can also see page 67, where a Roger Ebert review is quoted. The review is not really one of my prouder moments, although I stand by my glowing praise, but having the review reprinted in this fine book is a huge thrill. If you're interested in buying a copy of the book online at, please get to the site via Slapdash City -- the Books That Start With 'R' page. Click on the link for any book title, then search for Critical Approaches To Writing About Film or John E. Moscowitz from there. Thanks!

Monday, January 24, 2000

Stupid Day has come and gone, and I am proud to have fabricated a global event all by myself. The sheer force of will with which I introduced this holiday appears to have had more far-reaching effects than even I envisioned:

Apparently it is in my best interests to work on "Click On RinkWorks' Ad Banners Day" immediately.

Stupid Day was fun, but I'm glad it ended when it did. I had just about figured out how I could step on my own neck.

Friday, January 21, 2000

Happy Stupid Day, everyone! There isn't much to say about Stupid Day that I haven't already said in the Holidays area, so I'll leave this journal entry with just the warmhearted greeting. Be stupid.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go see if touching hot stoves actually hurts as bad as people say it does.

Monday, January 17, 2000

Wow. Once the Poetry Pool opened, the submission level of poetry increased. Maybe it inspired people to write more? I know it did for at least a couple people, and if I haven't said so enough, this is what makes being the webmaster of this site truly rewarding: I love to entertain people, and that's reward enough, but to have a hand in inspiring people, too? The content in the Poetry Pool isn't even mine (well, with the exception of two of the entries, so far). I'm just happy that it's encouraging people to be creative. So many cheers and a big "way to go!" for all you who have, are, and will participate in this with your submissions.

Friday, January 14, 2000

The Poetry Pool opened today. Let me say that it has been more fun than I would have imagined receiving submissions from people and reading their poetic efforts. There are a lot of creative people out there with a good sense of the beauty of language and the wonderful ways it can be used to express ideas. I look forward to updating this feature in the future, so keep those submissions coming.

Saturday, January 8, 2000

Whew. A lot happens the last couple weeks of the year and the first week of a new one, and a lot certainly happened with me. But things have finally settled back to normal again, and this weekend is the first in a long time where I can sit back, relax, and catch up on tending to RinkWorks.

I received a letter yesterday, concerning the Reader Poll question, "What decade in the 20th century did we need the least?" which was a submission to the contest I held for the best Reader Poll question suggestion. I liked the question because it inspires thought. Those of you who read this journal regularly have no doubt gathered that I don't appreciate purely mindless entertainment: amidst all the fun, I try to interject food for thought when I can. I was pleased to see that, at least with this reader, a certain amount of reflection was triggered.

I found Dracimas' letter very interesting, because he approached the question from a viewpoint I had not considered. I was thinking about the question from more of a cultural standpoint. When the results came in, I was intrigued even further: the high scores for the 30s and 40s indicated that others were thinking of the question from a historical standpoint, citing the Great Depression and World War II as things we could have lived without. Dracimas' approach is a third way to do it: a very personal one.

Did anyone out there approach the question from still another viewpoint?

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