Charles Keefer's Blog

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A doorway with flowers, north end, Palm Beach.

A doorway with flowers, north end, Palm Beach.

Due to continuing rants by my friends Matt and Ken Steinhoff of, the blog has wandered again. We are now on

Yesterday I moved the blog to due to continuing rants by my friend Jan Norris who blogs at Her complaint – you can’t leave comments on

The blog was on a Godaddy hosting account and was originally created as one of several projects I undertook to teach myself Cascading Style Sheets. I told myself that one day, I would sit down and write the code to make it run off a database and allow comments. I now realize I’ll never get around to that and, besides, that would be too much like work (in addition to actually being a lot of work).

The move to typepad brought a chorus of jeers from the Steinhoffs, who called it 2003 software and other bad names.

Since I’m a cutting edge kinda guy, and since I value their advice, we’ll give WordPress a go. It has the advantage that it is free and starting a blog on their servers takes all of about 45 seconds. If I like it, I’ll download it and set it up on my server.

By now you probably are fed up with moving messages so I’ll move on.

I received my Amazon Kindle2 today, one day early. I love it already. It is much easier to hold, connects to my iMac through a USB port, and is still easy to read. Can’t wait till I get some time to actually read on the thing.

Date Miles Total Remaining Percent
Feb. 19 12.94 424.68 2575.3 14.15
Feb. 22 12.96 437.64 2562.36 14.58
Feb. 23 12.98 450.62 2549.38 15.02
Feb. 24 13.31 463.93 2536.07 15.46

Written by Charles Keefer

February 25, 2009 at 4:05 am

Posted in Blog

19 Responses

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  1. Keep looking for your old one so I can take it off your hands and move kicking and screaming into the world of digital books.

    Since you managed to misplace your old Kindle, I have to wonder how much you actually used it.

    BTW, the Amazon CEO was on The Daily Show Monday night flogging the new Kindle. Jon Stewart pretty much mocked it.


    February 25, 2009 at 8:59 am

  2. One thing I like about your new blog is that I can leave a comment without having to interpret some unreadable symbols to prove I’m not a spammer.


    February 25, 2009 at 9:00 am

  3. Welcome to WordPress! It really is the most awesome blog software ever.

    I’m surprised you’re using a hosted solution instead of hosting it yourself. You really need to migrate to a custom, hosted solution. That way you can really dig into the templates and sell custom advertising. Let me know when you’re ready to trade up again!

    (Also, sign up for the Amazon affiliate program. I know what isn’t the last time you’re going to pimp the Kindle. You might as well get paid.


    Matthew Steinhoff

    February 25, 2009 at 9:04 am

  4. Matt,

    I’m using a hosted solution because it was midnight when I started playing with WordPress and I didn’t feel like installing it. From what I’ve seen so far, it looks like a good solution. If I still feel that way in a week or two, I’ll install it.

    And I’m not “pimping” the Kindle. I’m showing true customer satisfaction. I would be “pimping” if I was getting paid for it.


    February 25, 2009 at 10:09 am

  5. A Kindle! In my day we read books — books I tells ya — and we were glad to have em! A Kindle! I say flibberdygibet!

    Scott Campbell

    February 25, 2009 at 12:34 pm

  6. i wanna buy a Kindle .. i think .. but for $200 not $359 .. hmmmmm … I’ll buy a Touch iPod first!


    February 25, 2009 at 8:06 pm

  7. Samantha,

    I also wanted to buy the Kindle 2 for $200, but they sell them for $359. I already have two iPods so that was not a consideration.

    I bought the Kindle and the Kindle 2 because they are simply the best reading machines available. Better than books.

    I read all day on a computer. The Kindle lets me read something that looks like a book but is better.

    It is for people who read books. It isn’t for everyone.

    If you carry around a book or paperback that you are reading, you will love it. If you don’t, it may not be for you.

    Charles Keefer

    February 25, 2009 at 8:21 pm

  8. Yay! Out of the Luddite Ages — he now allows comments. Be still my heart.
    See the fun of it all? You have fans!

    Or, like me, you know a lot of likely unemployed ex- news peeps with too much time on their hands who have nothing better to do than to mess with Charles Keefer’s blog.

    Better than messing with Keefer’s organ. A great story, though…

    I hope this is your last move. I’m tired of changing your link off my food blog. (

    PS: Hi Scamp! He who can’t cook — used to bring “bread tartare” to the company Feasts. creative, wot!


    February 25, 2009 at 8:26 pm

  9. Dear Readers,

    The organ of which Ms. Norris speaks was a pedal-powered musical instrument that worked off compressed air.

    Sorry you lost time watching House.

    Charles Keefer

    February 25, 2009 at 8:42 pm

  10. Way back in the days of computer Bulletin Board Systems (BBS), Keefer, Norris and I hung out on a board run by a local author, Karl Meyer. In addition to his board, which was aimed at local writers and software developers, he hosted a monthly BBQ where we could meet our virtual friends in the Real World.

    Here was a thread about Keefer’s organ. Let’s see if Keef leaves it up. If nothing else, it’s a good illustration of how things electronic live forever.

    Page : 2322 Sec. 8 – Nut Warehouse
    Date : 12/05/84 at 20:35:50
    To : KARL MEYER (X) (R)
    Subj : Keefer’s Organ


    I’m not exactly sure how to broach this rather delicate subject, but, well, anyway…

    Keef sidled up to me tonight with a wicked gleam in his eye. Said that he was trying to figure out whether or not to buy a new computer. After giving it a lot of careful consideration, he decided that he ALREADY had a computer and that what he really wanted was an organ.

    I allowed as how that was understandable.

    Didn’t waste a moment’s time: he just up and went out and bought it.

    Didn’t even wrap it up or nothing. Left it right out on display on the city desk.

    Well, Karl, I’m as liberal-minded as anybody, but I think you have to draw the line someplace.

    It just sickened me to stand there and watch a grown man play with his organ when he was supposed to be editing tomorrow’s newspaper. Fortunately, he said that from now on he was just going to play with it at home.

    See if you can get him to regain control of himself, OK? We got standards to uphold.


    Page : 2327 Sec. 8 – Nut Warehouse
    Date : 12/05/84 at 22:42:17
    To : KEN STEINHOFF (X) (R)
    From : KARL MEYER
    Subj : Keefer’s Organ


    Let’s not begrudge Keef’s abilities with his organ. After all, some of us would like to be able to do something fantastic with our organs. Some of us would even like to trade in the old ones for new ones.

    I agree, though, just pulling it out and letting it sit out in plain sight on the city desk is a bit extreme. Organs should be played with privately, not where there are impressionable young girls around who are trying to learn to write, or collect photos of interest to all readers.

    Do you suppose Keef is hoping one of those young things will pick up his organ and do something with it? To what depths has journalism sunk? Instead of answering the phone with “City Desk!” he’ll probably say, “Keefer’s Organ Parlor and Display House.”

    Hmmm. Is it, by any chance, a mouth organ? Shame.

    — Karl

    Page : 2339 Sec. 8 – Nut Warehouse
    Date : 12/06/84 at 20:42:18
    Subj : Keefer’s Organ


    Shari told me this afternoon that Keef is without a doubt the possessor of the “largest and most functional organ in the building.”
    She volunteered that he kept it up all night. That when she woke up at 5 a.m. he was still sitting there fingering it.

    I wonder if he’s developing blisters?


    Page : 2341 Sec. 8 – Favored Few
    Date : 12/06/84 at 22:02:38
    From : KARL MEYER
    Subj : Blisters

    On his fingers? Or on his organ?

    Page : 2358 Sec. 8 – Favored Few
    Date : 12/08/84 at 01:35:26
    To : ALL
    Subj : Keefer’s organ

    It has come to my attention that Charles Keefer, late of normal society, was seen displaying his organ at The Post the other day. This has me totally

    There are small schoolchildren on tours in there all the time! To think that they would have to stare at Keefer’s organ is ridiculous and obscene. Not to mention that Shari has been seen playing with his organ. In public!
    Without even washing her hands before or after…

    Now, I ask you, is this any way to treat a Hammond?

    — Mark

    Page : 2374 Sec. 8 – Favored Few
    Date : 12/09/84 at 11:46:51
    Subj : Blisters


    The blisters are probably on his fingers.

    He uses them more than his orgran.

    (Have you ever tried to pick your nose with an organ?)


    Page : 2376 Sec. 8 – Favored Few
    Date : 12/09/84 at 11:54:11
    Subj : Keefer’s organ


    To rush to Keef’s defense, it’s only a TINY organ.


    Page : 2386 Sec. 8 – Favored Few
    Date : 12/10/84 at 00:33:28
    To : YOU GUYS
    Subj : My Organ

    Alright. I logged on and read the stuff, OK?
    Now I suppose you want a clever reply.
    My organ is not a Hammond.
    My organ is three feet long (die with envy, suckers).
    It fires up as often as I want.
    It performs every time.
    And I wash my hands before I play with it (especially in the news room where my hands get real dirty editing stories about low-lifes like you.)


    Page : 2398 Sec. 8 – Favored Few
    Date : 12/10/84 at 21:19:23
    Subj : Keef’s organ


    We weren’t waiting for a clever reply from you.

    The world isn’t ready to end yet.


    Page : 2409 Sec. 8 – Favored Few
    Date : 12/11/84 at 22:08:54
    Subj : Keef’s organ, cont.

    I was sitting there at a terminal, slaving away for The Daily Disaster, when Keef walked up muttering something about a libel suit. Said that talking
    about his organ on bulletin boards is one thing, but uploading the stuff to the Atex system for “normal people” to read was holding him up to “public scorn and ridicule.”
    If it was anybody but Keef, his blather about “litigation,” “hanging,” “keelhauling” and “flogging” might make me uneasy.
    Frankly, I don’t think there’s a court in the land that would convict me.
    First, truth is an absolute defense. Second, there are no “normal people” working at a newspaper to be corrupted.
    Finally, if it ever did go to trial, Keef’s in a world of trouble.

    Can you imagine what the judge is going to do when Keef and his organ comply with the baliff’s order to “ALL RISE”?


    Page : 2427 Sec. 8 – Anything Goes
    Date : 12/12/84 at 10:42:01
    To : ALL
    Subj : The Orga(s)n

    I hesitate to call you gentlemen in light of your recent literary efforts on the subject of Mr. Keefer’s new toy. It is true that there are no rules
    concerning good taste in Section 8 (whatever I decide to call it at the time), but you have somehow contrived to strip all decency from the subject
    under discussion. It was a most distasteful chore for me this morning to delete 34 pages here to provide room for legitimate messages that did not make light of Mr. Keefer’s organ.

    Nevertheless, I extend my thanks to you for proving that there is a need to retain this hidden section. We are still searching for a suitable name, and are receptive to your suggestions. We have summarily rejected Mr.Steinhoff’s offer of “Organ Grinders.”

    The Director

    Page : 2439 Sec. 8 – Anything Goes
    Date : 12/12/84 at 22:18:35
    Subj : The Orga(s)n

    Mr. Director, Sir,

    How about The Organization?


    Page : 2428 Sec. 8 – Anything Goes
    Date : 12/12/84 at 10:50:09
    Subj : Apologies

    Mr. Keefer –

    We would like to extend our apologies for the crassly crude behavior of other members of The Inner Office (or Anything Goes, or the Jerk Joint). To deride one’s fellow man and to make him suffer mental anguish at the expense of his shortcomings is sadistic behaviour at its worst.

    You, sir, have a right to be sensitive about your organ.

    However, we feel you were more to be loved in the old days when you put your hands upon the computer keyboard rather than your organ. Perhaps
    the novelty and thrill will soon diminish, and we shall enjoy your company again, sir.

    The Director

    Page : 2444 Sec. 8 – Anything Goes
    Date : 12/13/84 at 10:13:05
    To : THE DIRECTOR (X) (R)
    Subj : My Organ

    No apologies are necessary. When I enter the realm of Section 8, I know who I am dealing with. And a finer crew hasn’t been seen outside the Glades Correctional Institution in years.
    However, considering the fact that my organ is at least three feet long, I think it should be considered a longcoming, not a shortcoming.

    Page : 2455 Sec. 8 – Anything Goes
    Date : 12/13/84 at 22:06:17
    Subj : your organ


    Ahhhhh, but it’s no good unless you plug it in.



    February 25, 2009 at 9:02 pm

  11. And I should delete this? Why?

    This will completely confuse anyone who wandered here and semi-confuse all who came here on purpose.

    That, as I see it, is a good thing.

    They should all come back to see if the discussion of my organ continues after about 20 years.

    And, by gosh, it should.

    In keeping with current times, my organ has been replaced.

    It is now a piano. But it still has organ-like properties. It is digital now. It can still be fingered by persons whose name does not rhyme with Steinhoff.

    Rest of message deleted by for violation of User Agreement. For more information, please contact Blog at

    Charles Keefer

    February 25, 2009 at 9:24 pm

  12. Ceekay,

    What did you say that violated the WordPress user agreement?

    That’s a good reason to moving it over to your own server. Bleep them.


    February 25, 2009 at 9:33 pm

  13. That was a joke.

    It stopped me from saying that those were good times and I miss them.

    I was there when we threw Karl’s ashes into the sea.

    I saw his son cry.

    I saw his wife who no longer had a beloved husband. It broke my heart.

    It hurt all of us.

    But thank you for bring Karl back to mind. He was a good and kind man.

    I wrote his obit. I had to go to the editor to get it published. The only reason it was published is because his son was a pressman at the time. Didn’t make a difference that he was a pioneer in digital communications and one of the few on the cutting edge locally.

    They didn’t know about that then.

    I sold it because he was family.

    Guess that doesn’t happen much anymore.

    Do you think you will get an obit? Used to be automatic.

    Charles Keefer

    February 25, 2009 at 10:14 pm

  14. I suspect that by the time I croak, even if it’s not too long off, there won’t be anyone left there that will remember me.

    I can remember as recently as a couple of years ago radioing in a hostage situation.

    A voice came back and asked, “Who IS this, anyway?”

    “Just the foneguy,” I replied.

    How soon they forget.


    February 26, 2009 at 12:11 am

  15. Sorry Ken, but there were plenty of folks in the Newsroom who didn’t have a clue who you were. When you moved to the 4th floor, it might as well have been the Moon and all the newbies didn’t get a chance to know you.


    February 26, 2009 at 7:53 am

  16. George,

    Ain’t that the truth. When I sent out a memo in 1999 saying that we were cutting over to a new phone system, Lynn forwarded me a message from a reporter who shall remain as nameless as he was clueless complaining that “the newsroom should have been involved in the decision. How could someone who doesn’t work in editorial understand their needs?”

    I responded by saying I was working in a newsroom before he was potty trained.

    Oh, well, it won’t be long before kids will be asking, “Daddy, what was a newspaper?”


    February 26, 2009 at 8:49 am

  17. If you’re watching the news about the octuplet mom, it won’t be long before kid are asking, “What’s a daddy?”


    February 26, 2009 at 11:39 am

  18. And I miss Karl, too. I used to be typing away to him and accidentally kick the plug to the computer, knocking me offline yet again.
    He tired of this after some time and said, “Enough already. Put that thing (your foot) in your pocket!”

    Of course, that led to a fine discussion about acrobatics…and so it went.

    I miss those late night chats with witty, intelligent and often drunk individuals. We could solve the world’s ills back then. Wish it were so easy today.


    February 26, 2009 at 11:41 am

  19. I’ll get an obit. I plan on taking a lot of people with me when I go.


    Matthew Steinhoff

    February 27, 2009 at 4:26 pm

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