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Give That Woman Plaque!
I know Internet mapping innovations are really, really old news when I finally get excited e-mail forwards about them from my two 60-something, barely-net-worthy friends (this past spring and summer, in the case of Google Earth -- a toy which I'd tried quite some time before).

Love these daily papers, though, forever mewling about attracting younger readers while keeping out-of-it aging journos on staff. Susan Spano just learned about Google Earth. From her Los Angeles dentist!

I discovered an incredible new travel tool while I was having a tooth crowned recently. My L.A. dentist and I were waiting for my gums to numb when he turned on his computer and asked, "Have you seen this?"

He clicked on an icon and up came Google Earth, which gives you a list of sites to visit for information on a topic and also displays almost any location on the planet in 3-D. Google Earth accesses maps, satellite imagery and aerial photography taken in the last three years. That image can be manipulated using a variety of features: navigational controls for tilting, zooming in and out and moving left or right. You'll also find a distance calculator; line or route marker; overlay mechanisms that sandwich different images together; and ancillary video and print information from sources such as the National Park Service and the Discovery Channel.

My dentist knows my love of Paris, so he put the Eiffel Tower in the search panel. Suddenly, I saw the Paris landmark from every direction, including above, as he played with the navigator. Then he moved the cursor a fraction of an inch left and there was the Pont d'Iéna leading over the River Seine from the Eiffel Tower to the Trocadero. I was just about to ask him to show me the street with my apartment when he started drilling.

Drilling on her tooth, of course, since it seems likely she's already been lobotomized.

Best of all, she doesn't understand how embarrassing it is that she's only writing about this hot new thing now. Susan, the pasture is that way.

Posted by aalkon at November 6, 2006 9:58 AM

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La Spano writing of her "love of Paris" is a joke. She lives there, but seems to do everything possible to make it go away. She searches out the most authentic american-style burger, the best Thanksgiving turkey, the yoga classes in English. She frequents the American Library and imports a charcoal grill with which to stifle her neighbours in the VIIeme.

Spano's Paris isn't Paris, it's a little replica of Los Angeles.

Posted by: Stu "El Inglés" Harris at November 6, 2006 8:39 AM

She's missing so much...not a big deal if she's some suburban housewife taking a couple years over there...but, of course, that's not what she is. I'm continually shocked, via her stories and her "blog," at how little curiosity and lust for life she has.

Posted by: Amy Alkon at November 6, 2006 9:43 AM

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