What, me buy?: I don’t

What, me buy?
: I don’t know why this amuses and amazes me, but the Lands’ End catalogue we just got stars Alfred E. Newman on the cover, in a polo shirt.

The Dennys test
: I agree with Professor Instant about the nondebate over steel:

…try this experiment in comparative interest: go out on the street, buttonhole the first five people you see, and demand to know “Where’s the outrage on steel tariffs? Steel tariffs, man! Steel tariffs!” Watch their blank looks turn to caution, then hostility. Then be polite to the nice men when they come for you. There’s more interest in steel tariffs in the Blogosphere than outside it. Trust me.

Nick Denton is trying to shame us — and not without virtuous reason — into talking steel and free trade and protectionism and globalization and foreign policy and fairness and all that in blogdom. But with all due respect to my blog mentor (here’s Luke rebelling against Yoda), that’s big, old mediathink. Newspaper and magazine editors like to tell you what you should know and what you should think about (if not think). But the truth is, the people think and talk about what they want to think and talk about. Just go to a Dennys and listen to The People talking about last night’s Sex and the City or sex or their kids or jobs or dogs or whatever. You’ll not often hear them talking about politics. And that’s their right. I’ve often said that the Web — and blogdom — are like a booth at Dennys. We talk about what we want to talk about.

: Matthew Yglesias sides with Denton.

: Ted Barlow sides with Layne.

Note that we’re not actually arguing about steel. We’re arguing about not arguing about steel.

IM bomb
: But Denton is the master of the last word. Last night, when I chose to side with Layne in the nondebate over steel, saying that I prefered to post on Howard Stern, man of the masses that I am, Denton waited until the dead of night, when he knew I would be snoring, old man that I am, and he opened up an IM session on me so his comment would stay on my screen all night, unchallenged, his deft cut just two last words:

“gossip columnist”