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If you think TV smells now, just wait:

Television viewers are surrounded by sight and sound, but U.S. researchers want to add smell to the small-screen experience.

Not quite a masterpiece

One big reason the Civil War sesquicentennial is getting so much enthusiastic attention is the monumental PBS series 20 years ago in which Ken Burns, aided principally by Shelby Foote, managed to "take a knotty and complex history of violence, racial conflict, and disunion and turn it into a compelling drama of national unity." (George Will gushed that the series was a"masterpiece of national memory. Our Iliad has found its Homer.")

Hey, it's Icon Thursday!

Juxtaposition of the day -- make your own decision about what it means.

First, some people are working on $135,000 to, among other things, erect a 13-foot statue of Larry Bird at Indiana State University.:

Cool it, fans

Hey, we were watching the race, man! We don't care about no stupid news:

A South Bend television station is defending its decision to cut away from the finish of the Indianapolis 500 for a severe weather report.

WBND news director Aaron Ramey tells the South Bend Tribune that tornado warnings had been issued for the area on Sunday, and "public safety is a priority" for the ABC affiliate.

Be warned, watchers

Are there really as many dumb Hoosiers as this letter-to-the-editor writer seems to think?

With tornado season on us, it's time to look a the terminology of our warning system. The terms "tornado warning" and "tornado watch" are confusing.

[. . .]

When sirens go off and folks are seeking shelter is no time to ponder these confusing terms.

The clock is ticking

We love the game, but don't mess with us, OK?

Yet Commissioner Roger Goodell conceded the owners' lockout of players that is in its third month -- and with no end in sight -- is doing damage to the NFL. Fans, he said, are beyond restless.

Not ready for prime time

Do these people really deserve to be "survivors"?

Even as the search for survivors continues in tornado-ravaged Joplin, a number of faith-based organizations were mobilizing to provide relief and recovery services.


As of Wednesday, the death toll in Joplin stood at 125 as search parties continued to comb through piles of debris that mark much of the southwest Missouri city of 50,000.

O, brother!

I made it all the way to today -- the day after Oprah's last show -- in keeping my vow to myself not to comment. I mean, saying something snide about the insipid queen of gush and how she epitomizes the banality of popular culture, we're talking fish-in-a-barrel time. But, really, this just sent me over the edge:

Fee for nothing

The JG today has this long story about how the franchise fees paid to the city indicate how the cable companies are doing. Comcast shelled out more than $376,000 for the first quarter, compared with about $343,000 from Frontier, which indicates Comcast nabbed some customers. In the pervious quarter, however, Frontier paid more than Comcast, so it probably had the most customers then:

Don't care if you don't like this

In the current climate of red hot political rhetoric, with some people urging civil discourse one day and screaming at their opponents the next, it's refreshing to read this common sense take on "offense" by Dick Cavett: