July 26, 2005

What subjects are you interested in that I don't blog about?

And are there things that I don't blog about that you'd like to read about here? Basically, I'm seeking reader feedback to help me answer someone else's question, but I'm also generally interested in the answer myself.

MORE: People keep answering the second question and not the first. Seriously, my reason for this post is that I'm filling out a survey and one of the questions is about the interests of my readers! I can't just presume you must be interested in whatever I'm interested in. Presumably, there are big areas of interest that I don't touch on. That's what I'm trying to get. I'm not looking for new ideas of things to blog about and not setting out to revamp this blog or anything like that. I should never have thrown in that second question. I'm doing to do some striking to make this clear.

67 comments:

Menlo Bob said...

Living, as you do, in America's Dairyland it seems reasonable to ask that you take on the topic of cheese, pasturization and bovine animal husbandry. As a secondary topic you might also discuss waterborne recreational vehicles used on post glacial pools.

JZ said...

I suggest you continue to follow your own instincts. You've been doing fine with that as your guide. Stay with it.

Tim said...

Have you noticed any difference in class-dynamics, as your blogging has become widely read and linked?

mcg said...

And are there things that I don't blog about that you'd like to read about here?

No. That's what I read other blogs for. :) Keep up the good work.

mcg said...

Then again, I always like hearing about cheese.

Ann Althouse said...

Tim: are you referring to the law school classroom or some sort of sociological concept?

And everyone: remember I'd like to know what interests you have that are not represented on this blog EVEN IF they are things that you don't care to see me blog about. E.g., sports.

EddieP said...

Crimus, Ann, you sound like Kerry looking for an issue he can relate to voters with.

I love your blog because of the wide variety of interests you have. I don't get sweaty with all of them, but I look forward each day to what's on your mind.

If I wanted you to discuss what's on my mind today it would be: new shingles on my steep slope roof; tips on fixing a sliding glass patio door; lunch; my nap; how to build a bulkhead on my lake front footage; is that a water snake or a cottonmouth moccasin there under the willow tree?

mcg said...

OK, I read a lot of right-of-center political blogs, a couple of left-of-center ones, Slashdot and C/Net for geeky stuff, and AVSForum, a home theater enthusiast site.

mcg said...

No good cheese sites yet though.

Paul said...

You're so intelligent, I keep thinking this is a trick question but:
More on law pertaining to Medicine and Science not just politics. Discussions of note with students and colleagues regarding your classes or topics.
More pictures too, I argue that's a subject.

EddieP said...

OK, I'll try again.

I'm very interested in the Iraq Democracy project; the War on Terrorism; the silly War on Drugs; Medical Marijuana; the Theory of Everything; the Afterlife; Euthanasia; Medical Research; the golf swing; genealogy; presidential politics; and now maybe cheese!

grumpyTA said...

I really like your posts on conservative women and feminism -- it would be neat to have more of those. Perhaps more blogging on law school culture -- or what it's like to be a professor-blogger -- would be interesting. I've always wondered about the ways in which blogging can affect student-prof interactions in the classroom, and, also, about the culture of law school.

But, all in all, I read this blog for its diversity, and also because you interact with the comments in a really neat way. :)

Tim said...

Oh, I was sorta interested in whether or not you noticed a change in your classroom--do your students act differently towards you, do you ever bring up your blogging, and any other ways that your status as a well-known blogger intersects with your status as a teacher while teaching.

Dave Schuler said...

Just post about whatever interests you most, Ann.

But, speaking of cheese, have you been to New Glarus lately?

evangelicaljunebug said...

There has been a lot of buzz about Michael Graham's comments which declared Islam to be a terrorist organization. I agreed with his comments in general. I believe his comments create a context for a conservative case against the war:

Most people are slowly beginning to realize that there really is no moderate component to the Islamic faith. Islam is a false religion that promotes hatred and bloodshed around the world. Many knew beforehand that Saddamm Hussein had no WMD's (If he did have them, no president in his right mind would be willing to go in there and risk having those WMDs used against our soldiers) , Iraq posed no legitimate threat to the world, and had less ties to Al Qaeda than Iran, Saudi Arabia, and Pakistan (the nation with the most conclusive ties). The question remains: Why did we invade Iraq? The conservative argument: To defeat terrorism, we must promote freedom in a repressed Islamic world, and to promote freedom, we must overthrow dicators who thwart democratic reforms in their country. Although this conservative argument makes sense in general, it is pointless to use it in the Muslim world, since Islam and its adherents are so backward, no matter what we do to give them more freedoms, or promote democracy, Islam will always view the West (particularly the US) as the root cause of problems in the Islamic world. It also doesn't help when religious clerics cast those who spread freedom as Infidels whose presence pollutes their sacred land. Most intelligent people realized that a US occupation of Iraq would never be successful despite the fact that Iraqis despised Saddam because they understood that winning over people who follow a faith that promotes hatred is impossible. Why throw money at a problem when you know any attempts to solve it will only make matters worse. (See No Child Left Behind, Welfare, etc...) In this sense, George W. Bush has espoused a liberal philosophy in dealing with Iraq. This is why he has been unsuccessful.

At this rate, I'd rather have the government spending federal taxypayer dollars on healthcare and public schools here, rather than spend it on Muslims whose faith will never ever alow them to moderate and become respectable and tolerant human beings.

SteveR said...

OK I like sports and science (which you sometimes get into), your politics and pop culture posts are about right for me, and probably why I've hung around. Its hard to pin down specifics because you can post about something in a way that makes me interested in it. Its your "style" more than your subject matter.

LDM said...

If thou could'st address a bit more sex
'mayhaps t'would'st ease my libido's hex
dutifully cast by an onerous Ex
Woe! she belittle'th my Little Mister like a hen that pecks
-Lonely Donut Man (LDM)

tommy said...

I do follow the NHL (when it exists) so I guess that qualifies.

And what we are going to do for a Governor here in Texas since Kay Bailey has decided not to run.

I don't think either one of those fall in the normal topic category here.

Bruce Hayden said...

I love many of the subjects that Althouse blogs about. Indeed, only someone fairly self aware could point out that when she was talking in the third person, she used her last name. I tried the other day, and I frankly just can't talk about either Bruce or Hayden. But I do talk about myself a lot.

What I like is that Althouse is quirky and extremely diverse in her interests. And Bruce (doesn't feel quite right) enjoys this.

Best for Hayden I think are articles on sex, sexual differences, law, philosphy, economics, and maybe a little politics.

Ann, hope you don't mind that I played around a bit here, but that Alhouse entry was one of your best.

Bruce Hayden said...

Another entry that I loved was the monkey in the mirror one right below this one. Gets one to thinking. Given the choice, I would prefer a lot more like that one.

Troy said...

Subjects... Sports, religion, abortion, gay rights... I think you should keep it non-controversial. :-)

Oh! and cheese of course.

I'm also interested in the law school atmosphere -- especially in comparison with what I went through in the early 1990s, your classes, law prof POV.

Perhaps you can explain the Federalist ("John Birch") Society and why anyone should give a hoot in hell?

Oh! and cheese.

Charles said...

Law and politics is sort of why I showed up the first time. Since then have come to either like or not like some of the other topics, but hey, that is a blog reader's burden. Other subjects I would like to hear about all would pertain to legal scholar views - this is unique access after all - on politics, Supreme Court decisions, coming Senate hearings on nominees, maybe related to what it means to the rest of us too. The movie lists were fun. How about some music lists - what do you enjoy, what are you listening to? What weird or unusual things do you deal with for students or other profs - although that can be touchy. Any past history we should know about, how or why you became a law prof? Gristly murder trials? Most unusual cases? Could you do a 101 list for us of things about you?

Dirty Harry said...

More on movies and politics in movies. That's a fascinating topic for me.

And old movies: The classics.

I think your blog's perfect. But you asked and I checked my favorites to see what other sites attract me.

DannyNoonan said...

Issues that I read about regularily that you rarely cover include sports-mostly endurance sports, science and pseudoscience, and beer. You seem to talk about most of my other pet interests quite a lot.

It seems like a lot of your readers are interested in how blogging affects your classroom dynamic. I never heard you mention it in class. I did see a few students reading your blog in class though.

Troy said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Troy said...

Also discuss how John Roberts is The 40 Year Old Virgin

Troy said...

This one's a better likeness.

The man's not gay, he's simply delayed -- physically not mentally.

Janet Rae Montgomery said...

What do you do for a weekend outing? Go to a play (APT at Spring Green? Or is that too far?). Does Madison have any decent restaurants? Is summer is Wisconsin (which is surely better than winter) attractive? What do you do? Seems like you teach, watch TV, read the NY Times, and eat at friends' houses. Anything else? Where's the "real" Ann?

Smilin' Jack said...

I'm interested in why most people keep answering the second question and not the first, even after you've asked them not to. But I don't want you to blog about it!

dax said...

This is YOUR Blog. You do what you do best and don't second-guess(not that you would!)yourself.
This is a great little slice of the internet. Don't reinvent the freakin wheel.

AJ Lynch said...

How about topics that your readers think warrant more news coverage?
ie. the comeback of bowling as s family sport or do hybrid cars really make the driver seem sexier in the eyes of old, ex-hippie babes? You could call it the Crazy Reader Topic of the Week.

Dean said...

Many have already named my interests, sports, Madison culture (especially since I'm not that far away), pro-life issues (I know you touch on these). One I thought I might add is Wisconsin politics (particularly, and you may have and I missed it), especially this recent Wisconsin Supreme Court decision as well as others.

dax said...

Ok seriously. I'm in the commercial real estate business so anything related is of BIG interest to me. The Kelo subject was "up my alley"
I love cars and I thought it was interesting when you posted about your TT. Who'd thunk? Althouse/TT No way!
I enjoy when you post photos with some commentary as to where and when. Also enjoyable is when you post about local happenings in Madison.
However; my favority was the thread on breastfeeding. DAAAAMMM! I just couldn't help myself.

Ann Althouse said...

AJ: Since I started driving a sports car, what I notice is drivers of sports cars!

MCG: My colleage Gordon Smith makes a regular practice of cheese-blogging.

Tim: I can't really write about my students for the most part. As to a behind the scenes look at lawprofs interacting, watch for my new podcasting project!

Paul: I like to do the science news stories. Thanks for encouraging me.

bill said...

I read the Althouse blog more for how you discuss the topic rather than what the topic is about. You have an interesting perspective and entertaining voice.

On the otherhand, I'd like to hear more about your travails in avoiding egg salad sandiches and more "I'm not blogging about that unless someone pays me" challenges.

bill.

ps: for the egg salad sandwich, instead of a boiled egg, fry the egg. Then chop it up, mix with mayo, and S&P. Spread on bread. Feel free to add the thickest bacon you can find.

Sam Chevre said...

There are obviously all kinds of things I'm interested in that you don't blog about--state-level politics in Southern states, for instance. Of things that I wish you'd blog more about (in other words, you know about than AND I'm interested):
What is law school/the university/the town like--revealing comments, scenes, etc.
Wisconsin politics.

Ann Althouse said...

Danny: "It seems like a lot of your readers are interested in how blogging affects your classroom dynamic. I never heard you mention it in class. I did see a few students reading your blog in class though."

I don't really ever talk about the blog in class, though often I talk about some timely legal issue in class and say some things I've also said on the blog.

Tim: "Oh, I was sorta interested in whether or not you noticed a change in your classroom--do your students act differently towards you, do you ever bring up your blogging, and any other ways that your status as a well-known blogger intersects with your status as a teacher while teaching."

I don't think students act differently toward me, except that once in a while someone tells me they read the blog (and that they like it). They don't come up and debate about issues I've written provocatively about though, which I think is partly that law students worry about seeming unprepared on any given topic in front of a lawprof. That's basically an unnecessary worry -- unless it's a matter of the actual class assignment.

I assume a lot of students were pissed off at me for voting for Bush, which I revealed on the blog, but no one complained to my face. When I was guestblogging on Instapundit in the run up to Election Day, not one student said wow or congratulations or anything like that. Or anything like damn you for helping Bush or whatever.

Earth Girl said...

OK, here's my answer to your first question. I'm interested in garden design, nature, science news, sustainable agriculture, parenting teenagers, spiritual growth, invasive species, language, marketing, and river conservation. You may have written about some of these topics but that's not your normal fare.

Ann Althouse said...

Bill: I eat a fried egg sandwich almost every day, but what they hell's the point of chopping it up and putting mayonnaise on it? You just fry it in butter and put it right on the bread. And eat it hot, of course.

Freeman Hunt said...

Some of my interests not covered by this blog:
Asian films and actors (esp. Stephen Chau, Man Tat, Anthony Wong, Ong Bak, and Takashi Kitano)
Reptiles
Home improvement
Computer hardware and games
Theology, Biblical studies
Travel
Linguistics

Brendan said...

"I assume a lot of students were pissed off at me for voting for Bush, which I revealed on the blog, but no one complained to my face. When I was guestblogging on Instapundit in the run up to Election Day, not one student said wow or congratulations or anything like that. Or anything like damn you for helping Bush or whatever."

Like they'd be that stupid? Granted, you're not the petty type to hold that against them, but I don't blame them for holding their tongue or playing it safe. To a certain extent, you hold their future in your hands. Class rank is everything, and one bad Conlaw grade can sink a lot of hopes. I would guess that most students read your blog to see how you think about certain legal issues, and then try to couch their answers accordingly--should the opportunity arise.

Ann Althouse said...

Brendan: The exams are blind graded. I genuinely have no idea who's who when I'm grading.

Brendan said...

"Brendan: The exams are blind graded. I genuinely have no idea who's who when I'm grading."

Ah, I see. I guess I was influenced by old courses where "class participation" was a huge part of the final grade.

Ann Althouse said...

We're allowed to do class participation points, but I haven't been doing that in recent years. Some of the other lawprofs here do, sometimes only to raise grades of students who contributed in class and then wrote disappointing exams.

bill said...

Ann - the point?! It's food, who needs a point?

Since you asked:

1. It's tasty - fried in butter, mixed in mayonnaise gets you at least twice the fat. And as I had one chef drill into me, there are 3 main ways to add flavor to food: salt, fat, and color (such as browning or toasting).

2. If you like egg salad sandwiches, but don't have a boiled egg laying around, problem solved.

DannyNoonan said...

"When I was guestblogging on Instapundit in the run up to Election Day, not one student said wow or congratulations or anything like that."

I did. You just didn't read it: http://electriccommentary.blogspot.com/2004/10/over-at-instapundit.html

Ann Althouse said...

Bill: It's been established that I have never eaten an egg salad sandwich and have no desire too (unless I'm well paid for it). As to fat, if you want more, put more butter in the pan. I don't understand why one would combine butter with mayonnaise.

Ann Althouse said...

Danny: Still, no one ever came up to me and SAID anything. But thanks. And I probably did read that a the time.

Brendan said...

Isn't it obvious? We're all here for free legal advice.

Actually, as a Madison ex-pat, I really look forward to pics of campus, State Street, local happenings, the Fall foliage, etc. And it's so nice to read an academic who knows a thing or two about pop culture ... and not hang her head in shame.

bill said...

as it isn't my intention to convince you to eat an egg salad sandwich, I'll drop it.

I'll answer your original question and relate it to Wisconsin. Two subjects I'm interested in that you don't blog about, and that I experienced in Wisconsin, are skydiving (in Baldwin) and Sprecher beer (Milwaukee).

peter hoh said...

I'm interested in SSM, and I don't recall that you address this topic often. I think it's an interesting and challenging cultural issue, and we're right in the middle of it. Unlike other social movements toward expanding rights (women's suffrage, civil rights) this one seems to be moving at warp speed.

peter hoh said...

Other topics that interest me that you don't seem to blog about much:
school choice
elementary education
gardening
sustainable agriculture
poetry
economics
India

DirtCrashr said...

You don't blog near enough about dirtbikes or sailboats, or hitching around Europe before the Wall came down, and the shooting-iron stuff is a little light. ;-)

Menlo Bob said...

More information about the Interstate Highway System is always welcome.

Justin Gardner said...

Kittens.

Justin Gardner said...

No, I'd like to see more posts about people finding common ground in politics. Just like all the calls for "good news out of Iraq" I'd like to see stories about people coming together from both sides of the aisle because an idea is good enough to bring them together. But I agree with the second comment. You're doing pretty good on your own right now.

Becky said...

Book reviews, medical news, real estate markets around the world, puzzles, and grandchildren.

I like reading whatever you have to say each day, as well.

Bruce Hayden said...

Ann, I came around when you were debating (or dithering, as we guys call it) how to vote, and stuck around because of the eclectic subjects you blog about. You have an intense curiosity about a lot of things, and because of that, this is one of my favorite blogs. Thanks.

Kathy Herrmann said...

Half the fun of reading Althouse is its quirky and sometimes unexpected topics. So if I had to request "other stuff," it would be more quirky topics .

Finn Kristiansen said...

I think someone really WANTS to eat egg salad, but is afraid to take that leap of faith that belief in egg salad demands.

That said, to the question:

I am interested in:

China (from a cultural/economic standpoint, and the amazing changes there that will probably redefine life here. I think few Americans really think about that).

life overseas (including news
involving Asia, Europe)

fairy tales (and writers like H. Christian Anderson and C.S. Lewis)

women

writers/writing

food (anything on food is good)

religion/faith (and how it meshes with science, philosophy, and everyday life).

business/economics

jvg1249 said...

What should you blog about that you haven't? Well, I would most certainly appreciate your evaluation of condiments commonly available to the average homeowner in present day America. I've oft' found it indispensible to have a ready knowledge of those most handy of flavorings on my fingertips (no pun intended) to fill in those inevitable quiet moments in a conversation. And, I'd like to have your views on the subject.

And, also, while you're at it I'd appreciate knowing what you consider scholarship among your students. What are the principles by which you judge the intellectual performance of those individuals? How different, on this topic, do you see yourself from a sitting Judge, especially an Appellate Judge. Are the standards significantly different? Does (your) law school endeavor to train its students to perform well against either or both criteria?

Do you ever get any feedback in the nature of your students' later peformance and correlate it to your teaching methods or those of (your) law school? See any room for improvement? Or, any need for change in the method?

Finn Kristiansen said...

It's funny how we tend to answer the question we want to answer, as opposed to the question that was asked.

Harkonnendog said...

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu

Noumenon said...

I am interested in personal finance, Playstation, standup comedy, economics. Would be cool to see you talk about money sometimes.

grumpyTA said...

if you still need this...

i'm interested in graduate school (and my fields of study: u.s. social and political history, the histories of sexuality, women and gender, and south east asian history); shopping; dogs; cooking; keeping house; equality for gays and lesbians; my wonderful partner and our dog; ohio politics/local politics; and hbo (and occasionally showtime) original series (SFU, the sopranos, sex in the city, the wire).

Richard Dolan said...

There are lots of subjects that are interesting in themselves. Two subjects in which I am particularly interested are modern fiction and the cultural interplay among Jewish, Roman and Christian writers in the early Christian period. Writers I have been reading this summer in the first category are Saramago, Banville and Paul Austen; in the second, Jaroslav Pelikan, E.P Sanders and Paula Fredricksen. No reason comes to mind why you should blog about either subject.

Subjects about which I would be interested in reading your views are the various academic theories current in the law schools. Like many practicing attorneys, I don't have the time or, frankly, the interest, to plow through law review articles (let along full length book treatments) even on subjects that bear on my practice area (litigation primarily involving securities, antitrust, contractual or similar commercial disputes) unless they are directly on point on some issue in one of my cases. But I would be interested in reading short summaries and critiques of the main ideas being batted around by academics, particularly from a professor that looks at such things from a practical, non-ideological perspective. I haven't seen much of that in your blog.

Kev said...

It's pretty obvious from some of my comments that I'm a big music guy, specializing in jazz. While I get a few tasty morsels in that area every now and then, I come here for the same reason that many of your other readers do: the wide variety of subjects you cover and the way you discuss them.