Ars Longa, Vita Brevis

David Blue
Written by David Blue

A qui­et-but-pol­ished post-birth­day month and a late gift.

The orig­i­nal mail­ing list was receiv­ing too many hard bounces, so I fig­ured this mile­stone would be a good time to purge the list. There­fore, if you’d like to con­tin­ue receiv­ing these by email, you’ll need to resub­scribe below.


For the most part, we’ve been tak­ing it easy since our one-year cel­e­bra­tion, last month, aside from Isi­ah, who’s account of his 5-day-long soy­lent fast will make you laugh, reflect, and shiv­er, all at once.
The rest of our expend­ed ener­gy was in audio, after Anchor fea­tured our sta­tion on their music chan­nel. The Movie Clos­et’s 39th episode regard­ing PIXAR films is some of the most pow­er­ful­ly nos­tal­gic con­tent we’ve ever pub­lished.
 
Visu­al­ly, we’ve con­tin­u­al­ly diver­si­fied, pol­ished, trimmed, and declut­tered. Our land­ing pages have matured col­or­ful­ly, and the tem­plate has been vir­tu­al­ly per­fect­ed. Ele­ments can now be reordered, spawned, or removed in sec­onds, with­out neces­si­tat­ing adjust­ment of oth­ers.
 
I told you last month that my gift to Extra­tone for its first birth­day would be a bespoke mast­head. I’ve includ­ed it below this let­ter.

E D I T O R I A L L Y

It’s unfor­tu­nate that I of all peo­ple have been and will con­tin­ue to be respon­si­ble for brand­ing in the near future. I’ve nev­er been a very good sales­man, and the lan­guage I’ve con­tributed to Extra­tone’s brand image have often been crit­i­cized as osten­ta­tious: the latin mantra, staff-giv­en titles, and my use of lega­cy journo words like mast­head.” Until last week, the short descrip­tion on our Twit­ter, Face­book page, YouTube chan­nel, Anchor sta­tion, etc. was copied from the begin­ning of our About page, and dat­ed back to the first few days of the project.
 
An online mag­a­zine cov­er­ing tech­nol­o­gy, music, cul­ture, and media from an exclu­sive­ly-youth­ful per­spec­tive.
 
Ugh.
 
It doesn’t sound like a very fun place, does it? I’ve been piti­ful­ly devoid of alter­na­tive descrip­tors to youth” or fresh.” The most apt sum­ma­ry I’ve come across is that of The Last Mag­a­zine and well… I can’t use that now, can I? 
 
I did come up with some­thing, thanks to Anchor. (The old one wouldn’t fit.) I want you to try it on for size.
 
Ready?
 
An online mag­a­zine for the new curi­ous. 
 
As in, those indi­vid­u­als pos­sess­ing a new curios­i­ty. Or, per­haps - those new indi­vid­u­als who are curi­ous. 
 
My hope is that it is not passed over because of its vague­ness, at first glance - that the read­er, in ask­ing these ques­tions inter­nal­ly, if only for a moment, will arrive at a sig­nif­i­cant­ly more pre­cise con­cep­tion than the old one lent to, but I am noto­ri­ous­ly con­fus­ing, so I will always wel­come your sug­ges­tions
 
I’ll be hon­est with you - I wasn’t entire­ly hap­py with the idea of a dig­i­tal-only future for Extra­tone, but I’d con­ced­ed to the real­i­ty I was sure of, giv­en my expe­ri­ence: the only print mag­a­zines worth cir­cu­la­tion will be those that began that way. 
 
How­ev­er, Hawthorn - with sig­nif­i­cant­ly more expe­ri­ence occu­py­ing the North­west­ern U.S. - insists that our prospects for pure cir­cu­la­tion in the Port­land and Seat­tle area are actu­al­ly bet­ter in print. Appar­ent­ly, that’s how things are done there.
 
It’s still a pipe dream to be able to one day smell my cre­ation, albeit less of one. 
 
The Tone has got­ten itself into a bit of a rhythm of sub­jects - DIVISION, ART, and MEDIA. Did ya notice?

A U D I O

I had a feel­ing that Anchor’s com­pa­ny cul­ture would be a good match for ours, but I did not expect to receive an email from them, ask­ing to fea­ture our sta­tion. They were tremen­dous­ly kind and patient, even when I screwed up a bit of legal lan­guage and didn’t respond for 15 hours. I was giv­en a choice between the Tech, Music, and Cul­ture chan­nels. I thought music made the most sense. Feel free to kick my ass if you dis­agree. We were also encour­aged to con­tin­ue using oth­er ele­ments,” and told that vari­ety is always a good thing,” which is obvi­ous­ly very free­ing and on-brand as hell. 
 
It’s been a fun three weeks. Sub­scribers can lis­ten to the archives of our first full-sched­uled day, Hawthorn’s Sum­mer of Dig­i­tal Heart­break 2017 playlist, and Tim’s ultra-cool indie dive.
 
The Anchor com­mu­ni­ty has already been unbe­liev­ably wel­com­ing and sup­port­ive, includ­ing Maya (who orig­i­nal­ly con­tact­ed me and put up with my neg­li­gence,) Grant (who hosts Pod­cast of the Day on Anchor and was the first intel­li­gi­ble caller on the sta­tion,) and many oth­er already-mem­o­rable names who’ve con­sis­tent­ly lis­tened to and applaud’ed our radio con­tent despite its… breadth.

M E C H A N I C A L L Y

Aston­ish­ing­ly, I think I found an almost-com­pelling rea­son for us to have a Face­book page… A MailChimp-inte­grat­ed Email tab!
 
Wow.
 
I don’t think I’ve actu­al­ly seen a use­ful appli­ca­tion for Pages before. This is a huge mile­stone. Please be sure to select/tap/click that Newslet­ter” tab with haste.
Also, I have revised the site-bound signup page and front­page ele­ment, as well.

T H E F U T U R E

Eryn, Made­line, and I are just short of releas­ing an intro­duc­to­ry episode for Run­ning Down a Dream - a pod­cast pitch con­ceived of to encap­su­late the ludi­crous, spec­tac­u­lar, and some­times fright­en­ing expe­ri­ences we’ve fos­tered for a year, now, return­ing to our rur­al, small-town ori­gins.
 
At least one fea­ture from True/False 2017 is com­ing your way from me, very soon, as are local sto­ries from ever-vary­ing per­spec­tives.
 
Now, though, we are busy watch­ing the 24 Hours of Le Mans. If you feel like join­ing us on social, you’re more than wel­come.
David Blue|Editor-in-Chief
Leo Marx|Senior Culture Editor
Hawthorn Bradley Jr. | Senior Tech Editor
Ben Stokes | Artist, Podcast Host
Jab50Yen | Contributing Editor, Podcast Host
Anne Thracks | Prose Editor
Alek Michael | Alacrity Editor
Madeline Allman | Social/Style
Xanath Santes | Contributor, Education
Eryn Trudell | Visuals, Podcast Host
Isiah | Culture Contributor
Juni Cortez | Contributor, Copypasta