My Stats

Followers:86
Contributor since:April 2009
Location:Santa Monica, CA

About Me

I'm a writer in Santa Monica, CA. I spent some years at Newsweek and some more writing for TV. My freelance journalism has appeared in The New Yorker, Time, Slate, The Boston Globe, Fast Company, Fortune Small Business, Washington Journalism Review, American Journalism Review, American Heritage and TV Guide, and on PBS.

I've been writing about popular culture for more than 20 years, and about technology for almost that long. I've been fascinated the last few years with the way the two have started to intertwine, so that's what I'll be looking at here: Technology, pop culture and the places where they meet. I'll also be poking around in the world of blogging, microblogging, nanoblogging, micronanoblogging and whatever comes next.

You can reach me at billbarol.com.

 

Professional

I'm Known For...

"I Stayed Up With Jerry," a 1987 Newsweek piece in which I traveled to Las Vegas, sat in the audience at the Jerry Lewis MDA Telethon for 22 straight hours, stayed awake and wrote an (increasingly incoherent) real-time diary of the event. Today it would be called "liveblogging." In 1987 it was called "nuts."

My Current Project

A second novel

My Greatest Achievement

My first novel

My Biggest Regret

That my first book, "Mr. Irresponsible's Bad Advice," didn't sell better (Or, like, at all)

I Truly Respect

...the quiet dignity displayed by my late father in moments when nobody was looking

Moments I'd Like To Forget

See "My Most Awkward Moment"

How I Pay For This Wardrobe

It isn't as expensive as it looks. This stylish chinchilla stole, for example, was actually a stray pet chinchilla at one point. Why, there are bargains everywhere!

Blocks I've Been Around

Old Journalism; New Journalism

Things That Really Happened

I really met Jerry Lee Lewis in an elevator at 30 Rock in about 1980. He really shook my hand and said "God bless you, Killer." Fun fact: He has unexpectedly small hands. Related: I once shook Nils Lofgren's hand backstage at a Bruce Springsteen show. He also has small hands. They are, however, EXTREMELY STRONG. And surprisingly smooth and supple!

Where I'd Like To Be 10 Years From Now

Right here

Why True/Slant

Because the definitions of news and newsgathering are changing every second, and new tools are always a good idea

My Other Website

http://www.billbarol.com

Personal

What I'm Currently Addicted To...

Squarespace

This Is Annoying Me...

Technology that is conceived and/or executed so carelessly that it ends up making my life more, not less, complicated

This Is Making Me Worry...

Would it be a cliche to say "suitcase nukes"? Okay, okay: The impending death of print. (But, seriously: SUITCASE NUKES.)

This Is Bringing Me Joy...

My dogs. (And, um, my wife too. Of course. Hi, honey.)

I'm Running From...

Well, hell: The Reaper. What else?

This Is Helping Me Create...

Birdhouse, a stylish and beautifully-implemented iPhone app

This Is Making Me Think - Hard...

...Ow.

This Makes My Teeth Itch

That "Itchy-ban" toothpaste from Japan. I know, I know, it says right on the label "CAUTION: WILL MAKE TEETH ITCH," but it was so cheap I just couldn't resist. Now I can't even use it without it making my teeth all itchy. Why, it was just no bargain at all!

Can't Do Without

My iPhone. (Yes, I am one of those guys)

Favorite Voices

Sam Cooke, my wife

My Most Awkward Moment

Oh heavens. Where do I begin?

My Secret Ambition

Well, hell, if I told you that it wouldn't be a secret. Nice try.

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