Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Your New Icy Blue Albuquerque Tribune.com

Abqtrib.com has a new web design, one that had me thinking I had hit the wrong webpage for twenty solid seconds before I noticed that the prevalent ice blue site had ABQ mentions throughout. I'm usually not even aware of new web designs (as regular readers have probably noticed, graphics aren't my strong suit), but the Trib's new look gets notice because it's a sign that Burque's baby brother daily might be around for another little while.

I've been half-expecting the Trib to go under for so long I've fully expected to read its obituary for some time. That would be a shame for a bunch of reasons, ranging from the big picture need for more diverse information sources in the community to little things like Kate Nash and the rest of the "Opinions" section. Thinking back, I can't remember a time in which the Trib hasn't been considered on its death bed, putting out longer, more leisurely and interesting stories than the Journal like some coma patient that won't flatline for good.

I can't say I've actually "bought" a copy of the Trib in forever, but its midday arrival online has been a weekday lunchtime ritual of mine for a long while. And just about every weekend I rue that fact that it's webpage sits deader than a Crosswinds Weekly Saturday and Sunday.

With the new web design comes a "comments" feature, which I believe was offered in parts of the online Trib before, but nobody ever commented it seemed. Or maybe I have that wrong. To be honest, after reading the SF New Mexican comments for a year or so now I have not only come to even more fully share H.L. Mencken's sentiment that "Nobody ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American public", I have pretty much stop reading comments in any online source, newspaper or blog. Reading "comments" either leaves me remembering Mencken's statement, or responding with my own insipid "comment" that further proves Mencken's point.

Of course, my "comment" about "comments" does not apply in any way to commenters and their comments at Burque Babble. Not at all. Don't even think that.

So welcome, newly redesigned ABQTrib.com web site! May your pages not only be a bit more Firefox-friendly (I having a bit of a font difficulty at present), but may you also continue to defy journalistic death with your quirky combination of local/state fall-between-the-cracks news stories and reliably offbeat columns. I plan on reading (but not paying) you semi-religiously every weekday right up to the pulling of your publishing feeding tube. I'll miss you...and want you to know that before you suddenly go away like many of us have been expecting for so long.

Man, I almost feel like getting a kleenex out and it's only a web redesign.

P.S.: Another reason to love (but not necessarily pay for) the Tribune: Thelma Domenici. It took me a while, but I finally got that this is a joke column, using deep sarcasm to expose the farce that is social etiquette. Today's parody of a "Dear Abby" column was stellar, including the following:

Dear Thelma: I'm getting married and toasts will be made to me and my bride. What's the proper thing to do when we're toasted?

Now that's some good stuff...really good stuff.

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