Site-Related Announcements

November 8, 2011

Me Versus the Rally

I'll be on the 5:00 and 6:00 evening news broadcasts on ABC6 talking about my analysis of public pensions that are higher than the salaries from which they grew.

Posted by Justin Katz at 12:32 PM

October 24, 2011

Early on the Radio

I'll be going on the Helen Glover Show, WHJJ 920 AM, at 7:45, this morning to talk some more about hybrids and pension reform in general.

Posted by Justin Katz at 7:13 AM

October 21, 2011

Some Lunchtime Listening

I'll be appearing on the Dan Yorke show on 99.7FM/630AM WPRO from 12 to 1 p.m. to talk about pensions and (no doubt) various other topics.

Posted by Justin Katz at 6:49 AM

February 23, 2011

Talking Blogging

I'll be sharing my experience as a blue-state blogger with the Providence College Republicans tonight at 7:30 p.m., in room 112 of the Providence College Slavin Center. Admission is free and open to the public if you're inclined to swing by.

Posted by Justin Katz at 8:00 AM

July 12, 2010

Me, Online

Over on Anchor Rising, I've posted mention of my site redesign of Feedback is welcome.

Posted by Justin Katz at 5:39 PM

July 1, 2007

Back in Print

Well, after longer than I care to mention (curious readers can look in the "Elsewheres" section to the left), I've finally begun publishing pieces again. I was tempted to say that I've "managed to publish something," but that would imply that I've been trying and failing, which I have not.

So, I'll present "Moral compass swings to nihilistic pole" (about abortion and conservatism/Catholicism) in today's Providence Journal as what I hope it to be: a return to publishing, rather than the early fluke that my first piece in the Projo — five-and-a-half years ago — turned out to be.

Posted by Justin Katz at 3:23 PM

May 2, 2007

This Is a Test

This is a tree:


Phone-based multimedia blogging is now a reality. (Yeah, I know that's nothing new in general, but it is for me.)

Posted by Justin Katz at 10:09 AM

This Is a Test

This is a tree:


Phone-based multimedia blogging is now a reality. (Yeah, I know that's nothing new in general, but it is for me.)

Posted by Justin Katz at 10:09 AM

November 25, 2006

A Belated Note on Postlessness

Although it may be a bit late, the constantly blank slate having driven away what readers remained, the benefit of stragglers and passers-by certainly makes it worthwhile to note that I have not stopped writing — far from it. However, the ebbs and flows of circumstances have led me to the conclusion that the bulk of my production should be published on Anchor Rising.

Any return of the very personal, memoirish posts that I used to write from time to time will appear in this space, as will other creative work. Life will surely turn me back toward that direction, but I can make no promises about the schedule.

Posted by Justin Katz at 7:28 AM | Comments (1)

June 20, 2006

A Glitch of My Own?

For some reason, the individual page for my "A Life Begins" post contains only the first few lines of html code, so the post doesn't exist. I don't have the same problem in Internet Explorer, however.

Is anybody else having problems, or am I caught in some sort of caching limbo? (Yes, I've cleared the cache on my computer.)

Posted by Justin Katz at 5:33 AM | Comments (1)

March 21, 2006

Wow. A blank page.

Well, I think this is a first: an entirely blank Dust in the Light.

I'm almost through the woods, I promise. Soon I should be loafing around, kicking up the dust again.

Posted by Justin Katz at 5:56 AM | Comments (2)

December 5, 2005

On the Wavelength

For anybody with a spare half-hour tonight: Brown student radio interviewed me about living and blogging conservative in Rhode Island for tonight's edition of Off the Beat. The show airs locally on 88.1 FM and globally via online stream at 7:30 p.m.

Posted by Justin Katz at 6:34 AM | Comments (3)

November 9, 2005

Welcome. Sorry to Keep You Waiting...

Folks speak of events in "real time," and it's been one of the notable frustrations of having had to relinquish my part-time work schedule (because blogging wouldn't pay well enough to count as work) that I can no longer keep up with Internet-speed reality. The bright side of this necessary delay in my online reactions, I suppose, is that I get to come home from a day spent doing such things as framing walls, demolishing plaster, and (today) carefully dismantling 100-year-old built-in shelves installed by some carpentry predecessor with nails to spare and discover that something encouraging has happened.

Today, I thank Michelle Malkin for mentioning in her column something that I've written. If you happen to have arrived here as a result of that piece, the blog post from which she quotes is here.

Posted by Justin Katz at 6:53 PM | Comments (6)

September 4, 2005

Today Is the Day...

... that I become ultraorganized again. (And this time, I won't neglect to schedule in sleep.) That said, I just can't fit in an edit of Whispering Through the Branches today. At least on my end, when this period of stumbling through an excess of occupation finally abates, I'm confident that it will all have been worth it. Hopefully those readers who've stuck with me, as well as those who return, will agree.

In the meantime, enjoy the long weekend, but don't forget to spare some somber moments for thoughts, prayers, and perhaps aid to those whose lives Katrina has left in disarray.

Posted by Justin Katz at 10:39 AM

August 22, 2005

Closing in on the End

Well, I'm sure nobody who has ever done major house projects will be surprised to learn that I'm still working on mine. I should finish this week, though... that's a reasonable prediction this time, not pure optimism. A Whispering Through the Branches will resume next Sunday, as will (I can only hope) my sanity.

Posted by Justin Katz at 5:25 AM

August 7, 2005

Sunday Note

Having had a very rough week (about which I may muse in general terms later), and very much needing to get my spring/summer house projects off my plate this week, I'm going to take today off on the Whispering Through the Branches serialization. We're at a pivotal point in the plot, with the Exposition finally giving way to the Development (terms that students of classical music will most accurately appreciate), so the timing seems particularly appropriate.

If you haven't been reading the sections as I've released them, you can find the beginning here.

Posted by Justin Katz at 1:10 PM

May 11, 2005

A Wednesday Note

Although it hasn't seemed like it, around here, I've been getting a grip on my daily schedule. I've had extra writing to do, this week, as well as non-writing stuff that will ultimately further the same ends.

Thank you for continuing to come by. In the very near future, I should be able to begin rewarding that effort.

Posted by Justin Katz at 9:47 PM

April 24, 2005

Just So's You Know

I was going to write this more poetically, but I'm too tired: I've got another week of a hellish schedule, after which things should be better than they've been in a while.

Better writing to come. And A Whispering Through the Branches will resume next week.

Posted by Justin Katz at 11:02 PM

March 27, 2005

Busy, Busy, Busy

Well, last weekend, I took some time to run network wires to a computer upstairs so that I can work, read, and do other stuff (hint: it starts with a B) somewhere other than my basement office when I get home from my long days of carpentry. Unfortunately, my schedule was such — this past week alone — that it didn't wind up making much of a difference. I've also had lingering illness from the various bugs that've come may way in recent weeks, and that has kept me from exchanging my store of hours allocated for sleep for more active endeavors.

Moving on from Easter, however, I have renewed hope that I can get my life under control and begin reinserting what's been lacking. We'll see, of course... I've promised much the same in the past. I can only plea circumstances.

To begin the new week with some stolen momentum, I've decided to take this week off from issuing a chunk of A Whispering Through the Branches. Anybody who has not been reading it I encourage to take the opportunity to start the habit.

Posted by Justin Katz at 8:21 PM

March 9, 2005

Where I'm At

Folks, I hope you'll bear with me. I switched building companies, and this is my first week on the new one's schedule: four long days, rather than five (or six!) regular ones. On the whole, I think my routine will work out better this way, but it's going to take some experimentation and reacclimation — and maybe some investment in new technology.

The good news (from a limited perspective) is that I haven't seen much in the news that demands comment. I doubt, for example, that many readers aren't reasonably sure of my opinion on events in the Middle East, and I've nothing interesting to say about them, except to recall a political/cultural timeline of the nineteenth century that I created in college; one could see the dominos falling in the Age of Revolution.

Anyway, don't take me off your regular blog-reading list just yet. The seventy-hour weeks look to be done, and I'm already finding moments in the day to accomplish all the reading, thinking, and writing.

Posted by Justin Katz at 6:19 AM

March 2, 2005

Fighting the Wave of Putrefaction

I apologize if you've experienced any difficulties with the site, particularly with leaving comments. I've been doing battle with the largest and most vile wave of comment spam that I've experienced yet.

Comments should now be operational again.

(N.B. — Just so you know, my strategy when things get to be too much is to blacklist the term ".com"; if your comment is rejected, try deleting any instances of that term.)

Posted by Justin Katz at 11:20 AM | Comments (2)

February 16, 2005

Some Words on Posts

This was going to be a busy week anyway, so throwing forty hours of carpentry work into the mix has drained my days (and nights, for that matter). However, judging from the amount that I managed to post while teaching — with all of the out-of-school planning and grading and reading and so on — posts ought to be more frequent once I've got a schedule down.

In the meantime, I'll do my best to keep things 'round here interesting.

Posted by Justin Katz at 6:02 PM

February 10, 2005

Tempus Fugit

As you may have noticed, both on the blog and if you've sent me any email, I'm behind on just about everything. Sorry, I'll be writing about what's been going on sometime today or tomorrow.

Luckily, though, Earl Appleby reminds me that voting for the cyberCatholics blog awards ends tomorrow at noon. Dust in the Light has been nominated in the political and social commentary categories. I'm way behind in both, but when it comes to St. Blogs, I'm the guy who arrives late and sits in front, so I'm happy just to have been nominated.

Incidentally, Earl's got a number of interesting posts up, so it's worth your while to poke stroll around his blog if Times Against Humanity is not a regular stop for you.

Posted by Justin Katz at 3:09 PM | Comments (1)

January 28, 2005

A Two Worlds Reminder

Since it's Friday and I'm behind on things generally, I thought it worth offering a reminder about Anchor Rising, where readers will always find substantive posts. If you really don't want to click over, you can peruse the automated list of Anchor Rising posts in the left-hand column here and see if anything catches your interest.

Posted by Justin Katz at 2:26 PM

January 26, 2005

Sorry for Scarcity

I've been working on something that's left my head spinning. Perhaps it'll clear in time for me to get in some substantive posts tonight.

Posted by Justin Katz at 8:44 PM | Comments (1)

Jumping into the Book

I have no way of knowing how many people are reading A Whispering Through the Branches as it rolls out each week. (Although, I certainly welcome feedback of any kind.) However, with the beginning of Chapter 3, we've hit a bit of a milestone, justifying an administrative note.

In one of those tough decisions that authors must make, I chose artistic structure over what might be considered ideal pacing. I tried to mitigate this problem, but there's no denying that Chapter 2 makes for the most difficult reading in the book. It's all downhill — in the bicycle sense, not the aging sense — from Chapter 3 on.

So, if you haven't been reading Whispering and would like to do (or might be so kind as to consider doing) so, allow me to offer a partial table of contents so far:

Author's Note for Blog Serialization

A Whispering Through the Branches

Chapter 1
Chapter 2
Chapter 3

Posted by Justin Katz at 9:39 AM

January 21, 2005

A Note to New Readers

Just so's you know: I do write about things not related to marriage. Honestly! There've just been a lot of interesting points reported/written/said on that front, lately. It doesn't help that some of the other posts in my queue, so to speak, will require more time to consider and write than I currently have to spare.

Posted by Justin Katz at 12:37 AM

January 20, 2005

An Ad for Food

Looks like I jumped the gun on that Hunger Site BlogAd. It'll be back in early February. Of course, I encourage you to make it a part of your daily routine, anyway.

Posted by Justin Katz at 9:39 AM

January 19, 2005

Clicks Can Save Lives

The Hunger Site and all of the related pages have been part of my daily online routine for years — ever since I paused, in my gray-walled cubicle, to read an email from my aunt in late '99/early '00. From the very beginning, the main page of Timshel Arts has had a link. It still amazes me that the Internet can turn virtually no effort into resources for people who need help.

So I'm thrilled to offer the site BlogAd space here on Dust in the Light to spread the word further. Please make it a part of your own daily online routine. And if you stop by here, first, to click through, your time will help one more family in need.

Posted by Justin Katz at 2:56 PM

January 17, 2005

A Night Note

Very sorry for the lack of posts today. First, I shoveled the driveway. Next, I did a big loop of the state of Rhode Island (no laughter from the big-state people, please), making job-search–related stops. Home again, I made a large number of job-search–related calls. Then, I reviewed the answers to an interview that I'll post on Anchor Rising later this week. Now, I'm working on a short piece for publication elsewhere.

As always, however, I've much that I want to post. I'll get to it... eventually.

Posted by Justin Katz at 8:23 PM | Comments (1)

January 3, 2005

A Note (Again) on Correspondence

I've received a number of emails and there have been a number of comments to which I'd intended to reply, but I probably won't manage to do so. It's one of those quirks of personality: I hate to send quick, ambiguous notes, because that understates my interest in what y'all have to say. If I don't have time at the moment at which the email/comment arrives, I just put it aside and either its relevance disappears or I continue to lack for something interesting to say in response. Consequently, I end up not saying anything, giving even more of an impression that I'm not interested.

Well, please know that I am interested and that I read everything that comes my way and almost always follow any links that are provided. I promise that, once I get quotidian life under a little bit more control, I'll behave with better manners.

Posted by Justin Katz at 12:53 AM

December 30, 2004

On the Stands, and in the Dark

Well, my regular subscription copy of the issue of National Review with my name on the cover has arrived. Whether or not that means that it is on the stands, I can't say, but be sure to pick up a copy and then write to the editors to request that the author whose piece begins on page 30 becomes a regular contributor.

For the sake of anybody who's arrived here as a result of the piece, I should mention one helpful feature of Dust in the Light: If you find that the layout makes for difficult reading, just click "Turn Light On" at the top of the left-hand column. That'll brighten and simplify things.

Posted by Justin Katz at 9:34 PM | Comments (1)

December 25, 2004

Ether Out, Anchor In

I'm sorry to report that Michael Williams has decided to discontinue the multiblog feature in which I'd been participating, Into the Ether. His doing so, however, opened up space (and left me with unused technology) for something that I'd been intending to do anyway.

Scrolling down a bit, you'll find on the sidebar that I've now included an automated list of current posts on Anchor Rising. If anybody is interested in doing the same, there is a bit of a process to accomplishing it, but I'd happily work through it again for others.

Posted by Justin Katz at 12:43 AM

December 16, 2004

FYI on Comments

There are a few threads ongoing in the comment sections that I hope to join tonight. Even if I don't manage it, though, please know that I'm still reading and pondering all of your posts. Getting the bills paid has proven particularly exhausting this month.

Posted by Justin Katz at 8:36 AM

December 8, 2004

Tuesday Becomes Wednesday

I have much about which to write, large topics and small, but with the clock having made the transition into tomorrow, I'm just far too exhausted to dive into it, right now. I have some running around to do in the morning, but I hope — and plan — to get back on track around lunch time.

Okay. Maybe not lunch time... but after the school day is over, for sure.

Posted by Justin Katz at 12:11 AM

December 3, 2004

Pasting Error

FYI, I pasted the wrong URL as the link to Joe Kort's piece in the previous post. It's fixed.

If ever you catch such things — or even suspect them — please let me know. URLs are of the sort of post components that tend to slip through rounds of editing.

Posted by Justin Katz at 1:56 PM

Double Duty; Tripping the Bully

I realize things've been slow around here lately. I suggest that you not forget to check Anchor Rising. All of my posts there would have ended up here if there were no there. And mine are certainly not the only posts worth reading.

Other than the double blogging duty, though, the past two weeks have been peculiarly hectic for me. I won't run through the list of things that have soaked up my time. However, at the risk of seeming to taunt you, one thing in the works is the pundit equivalent of tripping the playground bully. I'm not sure what's going to happen when the bell rings in the next week or so, but it ought to be interesting, anyway.

In the meantime, I've made it one of my goals today to clear out my blog queue, so check back.

Posted by Justin Katz at 8:47 AM

November 26, 2004

Technical Glitches

Just in case you stopped by a blank blog yesterday evening or this morning, I thought it worth mentioning that I had some technical difficulties on the server end. All's resolved now, though... or appears to be. Let me know if you experience any strange behavior (other than by the resident author, of course).

Posted by Justin Katz at 10:55 AM

November 3, 2004

To Catch the Wandering Visitor

Although it won't matter for anybody who gets here via link or bookmark (except in those surely frequent times when you're at a strange computer and just can't remember how to spell "timshelarts"... and forget that you could just Google the name), I thought it worth noting that I've gone ahead and claimed the blog's title as a domain. So, should you so desire, you can now get here by typing in:

It's nowhere near the top of my priority list, but someday, I'll set about changing links and repopulating the Internet with the new address.

Posted by Justin Katz at 8:02 PM

October 22, 2004

Turning on the Lights

A reader email reminded me that readership has been growing at an increasing rate, yet I've been offering site-related notes less frequently. So: any new readers who find the layout of the blog difficult to read or distracting should try clicking "Turn Light On" at the top of the left-hand column. That ought to improve the view.

Posted by Justin Katz at 10:43 PM

October 7, 2004

The Ins and Outs of Information Technology

I stayed up later than I probably should have, last night, so as to post some items that'd been building up in my bookmarks. In the meantime, my Web host was trying to figure out what the problem with my Into the Ether feed could be (see the sidebar). The host concluded that the solution was to switch my servers, a process that wouldn't take long and wouldn't cause any downtime.

Well, when I woke up, Into the Ether was back up and running, but the posts for which I'd sacrificed sleep were gone. Such are the difficulties of information technology; I'm very happy with my host, although I wish somebody would have said, "Don't post anything new." The beauty of information technology, however, is the probability that something as simple as text can be recovered from somewhere, and luckily, my browser caches the "Your entry has been saved" pages for each entry that I post. So I didn't have to "recover" my content the really old fashioned way... by rewriting from my mental cache.

(However, I should note that there appears to have been a period during which comments were lost, too. If yours was among them, I apologize; please feel free to re-post.)

Posted by Justin Katz at 7:01 AM

October 4, 2004

While I Juggle

I've much about which I'd like to blog, but little time to blog it. All I can do, for now, is promise that I'll try my hardest to stop in and post entries throughout the evening.

In the meantime, be sure to take a look at my career-milestone piece on National Review Online, about the American Bar Association's (apparent) anti-religious maneuvering.

Drat! I'd wondered why my weekend Web stats according to Site Meter looked so pitiful. I guess when the Into the Ether miniblog on my sidebar is down, everything below (and even some stuff above) takes a long time to load. That means that the Site Meter button probably never loaded for some people, therefore not counting them.

This — for all you who are new to the ins and outs of the blogosphere — is why free statistics that are based on an image placed on the page aren't the best measure of traffic, even for comparing blogs that use the same system. Some blogs, I've noticed, put the stat button everywhere — in comment boxes, in trackback boxes, and so on — to inflate their numbers.

I've moved the button up. We'll see what happens.

Posted by Justin Katz at 4:13 PM | Comments (4)

September 21, 2004

I Just Couldn't

Today I had a freelance writer thing to do, on top of the teacher thing and the editor thing. I'm so tired that I'm dizzy, so I'm heading off to bed.

Of course, I'm thrilled to to have the freelance writer thing starting to advance, but it can't do otherwise than cut into my blogging time... mostly because I've simply got no more sleep time of which I can afford to deprive myself.

Posted by Justin Katz at 12:02 AM

September 15, 2004

Have I Ughed Lately?

I'm just overwhelmed with stuff. Things'll improve eventually... I know it!

Posted by Justin Katz at 10:18 PM | Comments (2)

September 14, 2004

A Teacher's Tuesday

Sorry for my lone post, today. I had a meeting tonight and tests to grade. Now I'm exhausted. More tomorrow.

The teaching load will lighten up some when I start sending my class to all of their specials next week.

Posted by Justin Katz at 10:33 PM

August 31, 2004


I will post entries this afternoon. Promise.

Posted by Justin Katz at 7:17 AM

July 29, 2004

Managing Technical Things Too Early in the Morning

Clicking the "Get Msgs" button on my email software has become a bit of a nervous tic, as I skip from program to program getting things done, so I often manually check my mail more quickly than my automatic settings — five minutes, I think. Such was the case this morning, when I was surprised to find that 62 messages had arrived during the mere minutes since my previous click.

As it turned out, they were all identical spam that had been sent to random email addresses at "" My email being the default, they had all come to me. So I reconfigured my account to send all messages that are addressed to nonexistent addresses to a "blackhole." Apparently, "" was actually a nonexistent address.

Upon discovering my confusion, I brought that email address into existence, and it is now functional. However, if you sent me any mail, made comments to any posts on my blog, sent trackback pings to any posts on my blog, or otherwise directed a message my way via email between about 10:15 a.m. and 12:20 p.m. this morning, please resend any direct notes and, if you'd like, draw my attention to any comments or trackbacks.

Sorry for the disruption.

I just remembered that I can check all recent comments and trackbacks myself, so only regular ol' email and responses to the online forms scattered around have slipped by me.

Posted by Justin Katz at 12:45 PM | Comments (1)

July 21, 2004

Forgoing Forgoing

I had intended to put off my standard weekly series until next week. However, as the previous post proves, a reader request was sufficient for me to change my mind, even though the Song You Should Know is a day late. (Not to say that I'm not sometimes a day late anyway.)

Posted by Justin Katz at 11:30 AM

July 17, 2004


I know I've been promising, in the comments sections, another substantive post tonight, but as you can see by the time stamp, it's rather late. I have made several small pages of notes, but I devoted other time to processing pictures of the house for the benefit of my long-distance mother.

I'll try to organize and polish my notes for a post tomorrow (rather, today). Promise.

Posted by Justin Katz at 12:34 AM

July 6, 2004

And So It Begins

Well, we're off to buy a house. Today will be hectic, and many hours for the next couple of weeks will be spent away from a computer, although with plenty of brain-space left for thinking... maybe I'll bring one of those pen contraptions that (I hear) allows one to take notes on this stuff called "paper." I expect to post each day, but I can't make any promises.

However, it looks like this Friday might (or might not) bring the Big Thing to which I've been alluding since February, so that might (or might not) provide at least something to make it worth stopping by here. (Of course, that being the case, there's also incentive for me to have interesting posts up, in addition.)

Posted by Justin Katz at 12:41 PM

June 29, 2004

Putting Off Aging

I have a whole post on the move to negate human aging that's been ready to spill out of my noggin for days. I had hoped to do the tipping tonight, but I'm just too tired. Tomorrow... maybe...

Posted by Justin Katz at 10:39 PM

June 22, 2004

Feedback Always Welcome

I've gotten some wonderful notes about this blog, lately, which collectively and individually grant a degree of encouragement that those who haven't spent years pouring out words in exchange for preprinted, scissor-cut rejection slips mightn't appreciate.

If that's the case, many readers also mightn't have any experience with the stage at which an author's emotional investment transfers from the individual pieces to Writing itself, from the personal qualities reflected in a given work to the possibility that the work will improve the person. Put more simply, one becomes more open to criticism because the true investment and return rests within the mind, and whatever winds up on paper or on the computer screen is only important inasmuch as it conveys and compounds that value.

What I'm getting at, here, is that, as much good as compliments do me, I'm always open to suggestions about content or execution. If you prefer when I write about something that I begin to write about less frequently, let me know. If the intellectual structure of my posts begins to lose its coherence (assuming you believed it to have been there to be lost), let me know that, too. Whatever comes to your mind to say. My email link is to the left.

Posted by Justin Katz at 11:19 PM

May 17, 2004

Note on Unsolicited Testimony

The previous post is actually an essay that I wrote in the hopes of placing it somewhere to have an effect on the debate in my state. Well, given events, today seems as good a day as any to give up in that endeavor. (The somewhat pitiful thing is that this blog is conceivably the most visible Rhode Island source that would potentially publish it.)

So, considering that it's meant to be a sort of active piece, making a case more than expressing raw opinion, I'd be much obliged to anybody who thought it worth a link elsewhere — whether in agreement or disagreement.

Posted by Justin Katz at 10:37 AM

May 13, 2004

Thursday By-the-By

Whew! I just worked through a pile of accumulated emails and comments. Now, I've got to get some work done. However, I hope to work through my pile of accumulated items to post as I take breaks throughout the afternoon and to finish it off this evening.

ADDENDUM (7:48 p.m.):
Sorry, I didn't mean to be misleading. Things came up today that required attention (all good, in a probable sort of way). And I still have some work to do. I continue to intend to do some posting, though.

Posted by Justin Katz at 2:45 PM

May 7, 2004

Friday's Just Another Day

Yes, it's Friday, but there's work to be done. I was wrong to be a pessimist this morning; it's sunny and warm. There's a metaphor in there somewhere.

Here's the plan: I'll be responding to email and comments and making various posts as I take breaks from the day-job editing today. Which I do, or whether I devote my minutes to further reading instead of writing, will be a matter of mood. Guess I'm just saying that I'll be around the office, and I'll probably pop in from time to time.

Incidentally, I'm a bit disappointed in my Site Meter stats. Because it defines "Visit" by the half-hour, and because it also counts (I believe) people who go to the non-subdomain address, I expected it to be closer to the higher of the two stat-tracking programs that I use through my host. As it happens, the non-Instalanche Site Meter numbers have been less than half of my lower measure, and less than a third of my higher one. So, even though visits are up a couple hundred from the same days last week, it feels like less.

This Internet thing...

Posted by Justin Katz at 2:05 PM

May 3, 2004

Three New Accessories

Well, when a guy can't clean and play daddy for two hours without returning to the computer to find a half-dozen comment spams, action must be taken. You'll notice that commenting now requires you to type in a two-digit code before hitting "Post." (Note: You don't have to type in the code before hitting "Preview," and if you do, you'll have to do it again before hitting "Post.") Thanks to Michael Williams for the example and some direction.

Two other small changes around Dust in the Light are more-standard blog paraphernalia. Above the Confidence Place logo on the sidebar, there is now a permanent PayPal donation button. Just in case you get the urge to help me out, or if you read something that you think would have been worth paying for. (Note: All things being equal, I enjoy selling my books more than just accepting money... not that I'm averse to the latter.)

The other blog usual is the Site Meter logo at the bottom of the sidebar. Ever since I switched the blog to a subdomain, I haven't had real-time stat-checking capabilities for it. More importantly, the numbers aren't so low, anymore, that I'm compelled to keep them to myself.

Posted by Justin Katz at 11:50 AM | Comments (1)

April 27, 2004

When the Fingers Won't Type, It's Time for Bed

Well, my early-morning promise that the blog would be full o' posts today worked out to be more like "full o' post." Sorry 'bout that. It isn't spin (entirely) to explain that I made the call, this morning, to give the Scandinavian marriage numbers time that I might otherwise have devoted to less-comprehensive posts.

By the way, I've a few emails and blog comments on my To Do list for tomorrow, so if you haven't heard from me, you may yet. If late tomorrow hasn't brought response, don't be shy about clearing your virtual throat, so to speak.

Posted by Justin Katz at 10:28 PM

Sidetracked by Life

Sorry about the light posting yesterday and last night. I had been wrapping up my work around 9:30 p.m., with plans for multiple posts, when an old friend called. Well, he's one of those pals with whom conversations can wend along for unseen hours, so by the time we found a comfortable place to hang up, I just went to bed.

Today, this page should be full o' posts... once the daughter heads to grandma's house in the late morning.

Posted by Justin Katz at 6:53 AM

April 20, 2004

A Note on Music

Since readership of Dust in the Light has been up quite a bit, this year, perhaps a note on my larger enterprise would be worthwhile — specifically, the Songs You Should Know feature. My door is open to any independent (or even not-so-independent) musician who would like some rotating exposure on this page and on the main Timshel Arts page and a permanent link on the Timshel Music page.

If you, musicians you know, or musicians you like fit the bill, just send me an email pointing me in the direction of samples. From there, if I like what I hear, I'll either ask for a copy or buy one and begin featuring the music. Any genre is fine — my tastes are broad — but I'm particularly interested in evidence of concern for the artistry.

Oh, and if you'd like, I'll be happy to carry anything that's available for sale in Confidence Place. I'll just want a few copies on hand, and if anything sells, I deduct whatever it costs for me to process the order (e.g., credit card fees). I'm more than happy to be cut in on the profit, but musicians' doing so is voluntary.

Posted by Justin Katz at 9:12 AM

April 18, 2004

Correcting Incorrect Assumptions

It seems, based on discussion in the comments section to this post, that I was incorrect to infer that Prof. Rosenberg wouldn't support the tightening of some of the obligation-based marital laws, such as those around divorce and adultery. However, his position on such matters seems essentially independent from the question of same-sex marriage, which I find problematic in its own right. A significant portion of opposition to SSM derives from perception of the danger of further corrosion of marriage and the impossibility of comprehending the effects that erasing gender distinctions in such a central institution would have.

There are too many variables to people's handling of information in this debate — from completely different usage of terminology to the media's inclination to stuff all opposition into the religious corner — to propound on the reasons that people make the arguments that they do. I give the professor the benefit of the doubt on this count. However, I continue to find it worrying that even such fair and reasonable disputants as Prof. Rosenberg treat SSM as so entirely a matter of individual rights that strategies for mitigating potential corrodents are not integral to their larger propositions.

Posted by Justin Katz at 12:02 AM

March 11, 2004

Technical Stuff

It's worth addressing, here, two matters from the comment section:

  1. If you don't like the black around the edges of the screen in this design, simply click "Turn Light On" at the top of the left-hand column. That'll change various design elements so as to make the page more readable.

  2. Blockquotes aren't a special feature of any particular blogging software; they require only a basic HTML tag. "<blockquote>This is a blockquote.</blockquote>" would render as:

    This is a blockquote.
Posted by Justin Katz at 10:40 AM | Comments (1)

March 5, 2004

Friday on the Blog

Memo to self: Don't get dragged into comment arguments that you know won't go anywhere on a Friday afternoon.

Note to y'all: You'll notice about halfway down the sidebar there is now something called "Into the Ether." It's an experiment in which Michael Williams invited me to participate — essentially, a syndicated miniblog, running on various bloggers' pages. My initial intention is to use it for brief thoughts that don't require a whole lot by way of thought (per-entry length is pretty limited, and there's no html), but maybe some good debates'll break out.

While I'm at note-making, I thought I'd remind everybody that, if you find this page difficult to read, you can click "Turn Light On" at the top of the sidebar to change it.

Posted by Justin Katz at 8:33 PM

March 2, 2004

Not to Worry

I'm here, I'm here. I've just been trying to edit a 4,300-word first draft of something down to 3,100 words. It's finally accomplished. (The title doesn't count, does it?)

I need to work out and clear the words from my head. I'll be back.

Posted by Justin Katz at 2:10 PM

February 27, 2004

A Note on Correspondence

Being as swamped as I am, I thought it worth posting a note that I've got several emails waiting in my inbox to which I intend to reply. If yours is one of them, know that I'm holding on to it until I've got a moment to reply with consideration.

Not to worry. The Big Project should be done this weekend.

Posted by Justin Katz at 10:34 AM

February 24, 2004

Off Day

For the sake of a project that I'd like to finish up this week, I had intended to blog only lightly today, anyway. However, I've been alternating between feeling tired and nauseous since I woke up, so know that whatever posts there are were written through somewhat of a fog.

Posted by Justin Katz at 1:45 PM

January 29, 2004

Another Reminder About the Lights

For the benefit of anybody who comes here as a result of the TCS piece, I thought I'd mention that, if the design of this page makes for difficult reading, click "Turn Light On" at the top of the left-hand column.

Posted by Justin Katz at 5:28 PM

January 28, 2004

Wednesday, Just So's You Know

Apologies for the slow start today. I was already busy this week, but other matters have piled on (most of them good things... I'll let you know).

It doesn't help that I've been flooded with that email worm that's going around. (Most notable person whose email has sent it to me thus far: Jonah Goldberg.) It really didn't help that, after a very late night premised on the promise of a sleep-in snow day for my wife, my dog decided it was the ideal morning to pester me to go out earlier than usual and then to bark at the door, yet refuse to come in.

Oh well. I think I'm more or less caught up with myself (if tired), so you can expect posts today, as I take breaks from the day job.

Posted by Justin Katz at 1:36 PM

January 26, 2004

Blogging Today

As the night closes in over Rhode Island, I just wanted to write a note to let y'all know that I have a number of items about which to blog, but various things keep draining my time, including a two-year-old's birthday, a teacher-wife's school open house, various work-related matters, and a couple noteworthy events — big deals in my little world — that I'll let you know about when they come to pass. (And having to personally transcribe the David Kay interview didn't help me to get my schedule under control.)

So, stuff will appear in this space throughout the night and on into tomorrow.

Meanwhile, if you receive suspicious emails with zip attachments — don't open them!

Posted by Justin Katz at 8:08 PM

January 25, 2004

For Your Records

I went to print out an entry from this blog, yesterday, and I noticed that, while the sidebar printed in its entirety, the actual content ran off the first page and never reappeared. Therefore, I've created printer-friendly versions.

On any individual entry page, click "Printer friendly version," and there you go: Dust in the Light readable the old fashioned way.

(As always, please let me know if you encounter any glitches.)

Posted by Justin Katz at 2:11 PM

January 23, 2004

Career Inertia

Although I'm always grateful and impressed whenever companies contact me to thank but no thank me for submitting my résumé for consideration, it's still a bit of a jab in the gut.

Such is the professional world. Recoup. Move forward.

In the spirit of moving forward, I've added some pictures of things I've designed in the recent past, but that I hadn't added to my online portfolio because I didn't yet have a plan for the major site redesign. If you're interested, I've added two new sets of page images to the books page, a couple of ads to the "promotional" page, and some new pictures to the illustration page.

As always: if you're looking to hire somebody like me, I'm available for the position.

Posted by Justin Katz at 12:01 PM

January 19, 2004

Flash Feedback Welcome

Now that the blog is redesigned and will do me for at least another year and a half, I'm back to trying to crank out the first Flash version of, and I've gotten it to a point at which I'm not embarrassed to show it. So, if you've got a Flash player and relatively good bandwidth, take a look.

Thus far, there are only two interactive components, and only one of them does anything much. Even so, I very much welcome — value — your input.

Posted by Justin Katz at 5:53 PM

January 14, 2004

Midweek Reminder

The last post in which I mentioned this is sufficiently far down on this page that I thought it might be worth mentioning, in case anybody is coming here for the first time or missed a few days:

If this page design is too dark for your tastes, click "Turn Light On" under "Page Style" at the top of the left-hand column. That'll also cause the images at the top of the screen to scroll up with the text.

Even though I've been doing graphic design and layout work for a number of years, now, I continue to be amazed at the differences in people's preferences. (The same goes for the written word, as well, of course.) I actually prefer dim backgrounds when I read; some people like crispness and stark contrasts. Each will find the other's preference to be a distraction. Add in that there are myriad aspects to design that vary similarly, and design becomes a constant struggle to please as many folks as possible, while understanding that somebody will still object.

I hope the two style sheets for this page answer your various demands and preferences, but please tell me if there's more that I can do.

Posted by Justin Katz at 11:22 AM

January 11, 2004

Because I Want You to Be Able to Read What I Write

Thank you to everybody who's offered feedback on my new site design in comments or via email. Even if I decide that other considerations (like an artistic judgment or even just my tastes) override a valid concern, I do consider all input. So, keep it comin'.

To address some frequent suggestions, I've pulled in the margins of the main column some. I've also tweaked the "Light On" version (accessible by clicking "Turn Light On" under "Page Style" at the top of the left column) so that the images at the top will scroll with the text. Hope that helps.

Posted by Justin Katz at 10:48 PM

Reminder About the Lights

I just wanted to post a reminder for anybody who didn't catch the information in the post way at the bottom of the blog:

If you find that this page design makes for difficult reading, you can switch to a different "skin" by clicking "Turn Light On" under "Page Style" toward the top of the left-hand column. That style will also load a bit more quickly, if you've got a slow connection.

If everything works as intended, once chosen, the Light On design should be the one that loads up for you each time (except maybe in the comment boxes).

Posted by Justin Katz at 5:00 PM

January 9, 2004

Welcome to the New Home of Dust in the Light!

Design Notes
Well, this is it! Although the production of this page went relatively smoothly, I know missing something is inevitable, so please tell me if you come across anything that doesn't look or work right. Even if you don't find anything that's wrong, I welcome any feedback, particularly suggestions for improvement.

I should also point out that I've tried to address some possible issues by creating a second, slightly different layout. If this present design is too dark and/or if the page loads too slowly for your tastes, just click on the left side, under "Page Style," where it says "Turn Light On." You should only have to do it once for all pages and for multiple visits, but the function is a little bit buggy if you start clicking the corresponding switch in the comment boxes.

Address Matters
I also want to mention that the official address for Dust in the Light is now:

If you have this page bookmarked, or if you have been so kind as to link to me, I'd appreciate it greatly if you'd update your links, mostly for statistical purposes.

Now and Soon
Speaking of links, I will be adding a blogroll, as time allows, and I'll also be adding links to all of the months of blogging that I did on the other page. The final week of entries is still available here, although without the frame, and without the ability to comment.

Thanks for reading!

Okay. I've darkened the text and lightened both the "wall" and stained-glass's reflection on it. I've also enlarged the text all around and brought it in a little on the right. Does that help some?

If it doesn't help enough, as I noted above, you can click "Turn Light On" at the top of the left-hand column. If you do so, that will be the way the page opens up for you to start with (until you clear your cookies).

Posted by Justin Katz at 4:01 PM | Comments (6)