What It Is (posts below left; rate sheet, client list, other stuff below right)

My name is Bob Land. I am a full-time freelance editor and proofreader, and occasional indexer. This blog is my website.

You'll find my rate sheet and client list here, as well as musings on the life of a freelancer; editing, proofreading, and indexing concerns and issues; my ongoing battles with books and production; and the occasional personal revelation.

Feel free to contact me directly with additional questions: landondemand@gmail.com.

Thanks for visiting. Leave me a comment. Come back often.

Friday, February 15, 2019

Lattice Posting

Valentine's Day has come and gone. Tere was going to knit me something in the last few days, which is like a dual shot of things I don't need -- whatever she was going to knit, and deadline-induced panic and frustration. I cover enough of the latter territory on my own.

I asked, as plainly as I've stated it for years in some form to each of the members of my family, "Would you just get me something I've been asking for for years? The shipping will cost more than the goods, and together they won't crack ten dollars. I think no one's paid attention to my request because it's seemed too inconsequential. I'd rather get something that obviously means something to me than someone buying me something that doesn't."

This holy grail? A copy of Abbie Hoffman's Steal This Book. I cut my teeth on it when I was about 11, and I wanted it not only for reminiscence but also because it's a wonderful snapshot of New York City before all the bad neighborhoods downtown went yuppie and beyond. Lo and behold, yesterday I received a copy for Valentine's Day. Not one of the original versions with the black cover, but still the typesetting was the original plates. I'm looking forward to reading back through it.

One of the things I remember reading as a yute was about making sandals from old tires, and I did happen to open to that page today while walking back to my office. I then sat down in front of the current manuscript, not 20 seconds later, and read,

"[Name] had a pair of sandals made here—the peasant kind that’s common to this area (wait till you see them—they’re so ugly, they’re neat!). Anyway, his feet are so big that the shoemaker was just amazed. The night we went to get them fitted to his foot, half the village came to look. The shoes are made with tire treads for the soles."

That's One Approach to the Crime Problem

Anyway, Skyros is known as the most mysterious island (by the Greeks). The people here have been the most isolated and so live very much by the old traditions. Until 1925, any policeman who came here was immediately murdered. 

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Sage Words from a Pianist I've Been Listening to Recently

Mal Waldron moved from Munich to Brussels in the 1990s, stating that, in Belgium, "Nobody stands on the corner waiting for the lights to change. In Germany they watch the lights instead of the cars. The lights never killed anybody." (Wikipedia)

The Never-Ending Episode

Nothing wrong with the book, but you can piece together the like quotes and understand that this project has been on my mind way too long -- an index scheduled before the partial indexing ban was instituted, although I'll likely take indexes from this publisher as long as they offer them because there's just something to be said about being nice in this world:

Francis Harper and Arthur Leeds’s archival research in Philadelphia coupled with that conducted in London by Francis Pennell and Professor Ernest Earnest of Temple University during the course of Pennell’s literary and biographical research had identified Bartramian manuscripts and copies that had received little previous study.

Let it also be known that the headmaster of my rightfully much-maligned high school had the name of William Magavern Williams. And he graduated Williams College.

Sunday, February 10, 2019

This Footnote from Science History

The Delaware Museum of Natural History was founded by John DuPont based on his personal shell collection, for which Abbott had provided guidance. DuPont served as president (chief executive officer) of the museum and chair of the board. In 1996, John DuPont shot and killed wrestler David Schultz, an Olympic gold medalist who was living and training at DuPont’s sprawling estate, Foxcatcher Farm. DuPont was found guilty but mentally ill in the shooting death, and he died in prison in 2010.

Friday, February 8, 2019

David Eisenhower? Stephen King? Some Other White Dude Who Came into the Cracker Barrel Last Week?

The consensus is apparently in. I'm now a lookalike for "Doc" from Back to the Future. There's no doubt that if I grow my hair out, it is Santa Claus white and, without any product application, sticks out perpendicularly from my temples. And I suppose what passes for my calm these days is something approaching Christopher Lloyd's crazed.

I still don't think I'll ever recover from the Bristol Krispy Kreme ladies all agreeing that I looked like Stephen King. And that was about 15 years ago. In retrospect, I'm pretty impressed that the staff could call up the image of an author, even one whose face should dissolve camera lenses.

Found this amusing piece on the S. Kings, though. I'm personally tired of being mistaken for every nameless hack who looks like me, and there are a ton of us out there, if a lifetime of my hearing it everywhere I go is any indication.

Wednesday, February 6, 2019

Best Rest for Editorial Eyes

Also happens to be the best website ever.

You're welcome.

To Be a Christian in Much of the United States

Means that you must take this statement as scientific proof that the Noahic flood occurred right on time about 6,000 years ago. If that ain't your thinking, better get you to Amazon and find you a set of fireproof britches:

The great Apalachian Mountains, which run from York [Hudson] River back of these Colonies to the Bay of Mexico, show in many Places near the highest Parts of them, Strata Sea Shells, in some Places the marks of them are in the solid Rocks. ’Tis certainly the Wreck of a World we live on! We have Specimens of those Sea shell Rocks broken off near the Tops of those Mountains, brought and deposited in our Library [the Library Company of Philadelphia] as Curiosities. If you have not seen the like, I'll send you a Piece.
—Benj. Franklin

Saturday, February 2, 2019

Some Things Never Change

Florida has always been over valued; it therefore becomes our duty to lay aside the expectations of an El Dorado or a fountain of immortality, and by a diligent scrutiny, by practical experiments…strive to discover the best uses to which our newly acquired territory can be applied.

—John le Conte, 1822

"I Read the News Today, Oh Boy"

I shouldn't have bothered. I am better off not knowing, not discussing, not responding, not venturing, not caring.

If you were in medical school and the army in 1984, with even a hint in your already twice-darkened soul of political aspirations, the closest you should have been to anyone in blackface or Klan pajamas is a photo in a library book that you weren't looking at. Jesus.

Democrat or Republican, one should typically fear doctors-turned-politicians. One ego-crazed profession in a lifetime wasn't enough juice?

Friday, February 1, 2019

Catch, Document, and Consume

Further along, he saw and again reported (this time in more detail) the Florida limpkin, “a very curious bird…called…the crying bird. I cannot determine what genus of European birds to join it with.” Earlier on his voyage, he had named and eaten the “type” specimen of limpkin. Bartram’s drawing of “The Crying Bird,” published by W. P. Barton in 1818, serves as the type.

Monday, January 28, 2019

Confirmation, Justification, and a Few Others

For the first time since November 7, I looked at the Google news aggregator. The world hasn't changed in the slightest. I haven't missed a thing.

Under local stories, I did find a "Mystery Diner" review of a supposedly authentic Korean restaurant in Elizabethton, Tennessee, which is a very nice half-hour drive from here. We think nothing of going to, or toward, Elizabethton for what is routinely considered Tennessee's best barbecue in a small, very out-of-the-way joint, and think of that ranking when it competes against every famous Memphis barbecue place. "Mystery Diner," who I think is any contributor, baffled me when I first saw a straight-up, irony-free review of a local, recently opened Steak and Shake, where the writer first defined the burgers and fries as if they'd been dropped in from another planet . . . and didn't bother with trying the shakes.

Elizabethton is also home of First Presbyterian Church of Elizabethton, TN, which is where Tere and I will go (not even annually) when we want to go to church. Certainly the most open and affirming and welcoming of all Presbyterian congregations I've ever seen anywhere—in East Tennessee. Their former pastor had a syndicated PRI radio show in which he delved into all kinds of theological issues, such as I might come across.

How welcoming was this church? Under the prior pastor, this nice Jewish boy from New York City almost did the aisle walk to take Communion. I was this close, but didn't pull that lever. My feet were moving, almost.

How did the pastor do it? Aside from the general vibe of the church, as he was inviting people to the table, he said, "If you think Jesus would have wanted you to take communion, feel free to come up."

Good pastor. Lots of show. Very consciously a performer, and I usually don't tolerate too much of that. But I've loved some pastors in my day, and none of them presented the offer to receive the lord's supper quite like that, professionally or personally. I don't think PCUSA would mind, but I don't know.

Sunday, January 27, 2019

And Speaking of My Online Gig, from Which I Am on Hiatus

Thankfully, this ain't me, but there are some interesting parallels:

We get forty little thumbnails, that way we don’t have to watch the video we can instantly see “oh, well there’s some genitals” or “there’s a man’s head but he’s not connected to it” . . . something like that. And we can instantly apply policy. It’s extremely streamlined.

Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Substance Matters

Another episode in the-blog-as-scholarly-dick-joke:

Herodotus reported a similar story. Astrabacus, a dead but reanimated hero, had sexual intercourse with a maiden. He even fathered a son called Demaratus. His paramour described Astrabacus as being a phasma or “apparition” in the form of her dead husband, Ariston. Despite being an apparition, Astrabacus was apparently not ethereal. In order for him to have sired a child, at least one part of him must have been substantial.

Monday, January 21, 2019

Right on Time

Tere came home today, finally. And within the hour, both cats were at the door.

Now, Elvis . . . he would have stayed away for three days, come home immediately after we opened a can of tuna, and proceeded to lecture us for 10 minutes on the indignities he faced while we were gone.

End in Sight, It Must Be Right

Two weeks in, and my wife appears to be headed home later today (Monday). Fingers are crossed. I'm spending the night here, writing an index in a dark hospital room in the middle of the night. It's about 10 degrees outside. Tere is resting quite comfortably, and I've managed to find 9 hours of music-type sounds that mimic our backyard, once you filter out the barking dogs, whom I hope to spring on Tuesday from a week of boarding, which followed a week of bizarre nonroutines for them. Poor puppies. But Tere's got something to listen to overnight instead of the occasional person hollin' oudda they head.

Our outdoor cats (in my mind, they're outdoor) seem to have flown the coop. While I feed them, I'm sure they know that Tere is their main advocate, and they probably sense she's not there. And once the dogs were boarded, the cats didn't have much entertainment or other warm bodies to rub up against. But I kept putting food out, and they'd show up occasionally. Not so much the last few days.

World's Handsomest Mutt Zooey doesn't pay much attention to the felines, but the hound and the gray cat, Suzzy, are buddies. Suzzy and Maggie, our little tortoise-shell beast, are both hunters and pretty clever, and I have no concern that they could survive outdoors. Maybe someone else has taken them in and is letting them pee on their valued rugs.

Once Tere and the dogs are repatriated to the Commonwealth, with my luck the cats'll show back up.

I remember when we left Florida 19 years ago, we had a crazy indoor/outdoor cat that we hoped wouldn't show back up when moving day came. She'd disappear for a week or two at a time, so long absences weren't uncommon, but by the time I finally pulled up stakes, four weeks had passed since I last saw her. Probably nabbed by a hawk or decided to seek higher ground on the mainland. I remember leaving the house for the last time, thinking, Georgia, please don't show up. Because if she did, I'd have been compelled to take her with me. I am not going to knowingly leave a pet behind, even a cat that could survive perfectly well on the North Florida coast surrounded by seafood, barring outdoor dangers. In 33 years, we've only ever lost one cat to a car, and it was a great cat. Poor Hobbes. And poor Otis, another great animal and Elvis's mentor, probably succumbed to the circle of life near the marsh, or he started walking back to Atlanta, when we moved to Fernandina.

We had Elvis for 19 years, and after him, I'm pretty ambivalent about cats. If one's around, that's fine, but it better be doing its business out of doors. Every. Goddamn. Time.

Monday, January 14, 2019

Riding His Wife's Rather Disgusting Coattails

My news boycott continues, but I was compelled to visit the tubez to check on the first name of the junior US senator from that other state that sits about a mile from here and that continues to house my dear wife in intensive care.

Marsha Blackburn.

Read through some of her Wikipedia page. God, what a brainless hack. But there is this:

Her husband is the founder of the International Bow Tie Society (IBTS). 

Sunday, January 13, 2019

Nice Indexing Juxtaposition

Just the way it turned out. I had nothing to do with it.

trolls, 154–55, 160, 161–62, 168, 177
Trump, Donald, 145, 147n9, 149n13, 167
    communication in service of, 160

    regime of, 39

Saturday, January 12, 2019

Today's Index Entry Winner: Everybody in the Pool

But the day is still very young:

Dipolog-Iligan-Ozamis-Pagadian-Ipil-Marawi Committee on Mining Issues, 112