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Tea on the T, and something's fishy about the toothpaste

Boston-area bloggers were busy last week, from China, where several local students have temporarily set up shop, to Harvard Square, where a national TV news crew descended on a weekly blogger get-together:

Brookliners abroad
Eight Brookline High School students (and one teacher) are spending four months in Xi'an, China, living with host families and immersing themselves in the local culture. One of the students David Wang, is blogging the experience. He discusses adapting to life on the other side of the world:

''I've taken to smuggling my toothpaste into the bathroom when I brush my teeth b/c my host mom has been making me use their fish-flavored tooth paste. . . ."

Hug your children
Eliot Gelwan, a Brookline psychiatrist, reacts to an article he read by a man whose son is addicted to methamphetamine:

''As someone who treats detoxing substance users on my psychiatric hospital unit, it is useful for me to have a window into the experience at least some of their loved ones might have. When my ability to be compassionate to one of my patients is frayed, one of the mantras I use to get back to where I want to be in caring for them is to remind myself that this is someone's son or daughter, that this patient was once a babe in arms cuddled and loved by some mother or father. But it also makes me desperate to go and hug my sleeping children, still too young to have been exposed to drugs, and never let go."

Trash talk
Jenn Martinelli of Beacon Hill got yelled at last week when she put her trash out before midnight:

''Now I just put my trash out because it's really smelly and gross and some idiot yelled at me, 'It's actually midnight!' I didn't see who it was, which kind of [stinks] because I'd like to know who the [stupid person] is that feels like he needs to yell at me when I'm sure 80 percent of the neighborhood will have their trash out shortly."

That'll raze eyebrows
Michael Bodge reports on his Delete Yourself blog that one of the workers at the Dunkin' Donuts on Congress Street downtown has shaved off his eyebrows and tattooed ''PUERTO RICAN" over each eye.

Tea and sympathy
Cynthia Rockwell offers proof that taking the T isn't all drudgery and sardine-like squashing:

''I was in the Harvard subway station slightly after 4 p.m. and a woman offered me tea. High tea, I suppose. She had a table set up and tea and cookies laid out and she was wearing a taffeta gown and hat and affecting a British accent."

Could Verizon phone home?
Adam Rosi-Kessel of Roslindale writes in his Fair and Balanced Weblog that he can't understand why Verizon makes it so hard for him to consolidate all his phone bills into one:

''Last night, I called Verizon Wireless Customer Support, asking them why it's taken three months to do this. They told me I had to call Verizon Wireless One Bill. Verizon Wireless One Bill told me that Verizon Wireless Customer Support didn't know what they were talking about, and I had to call Verizon Residential One Bill, but they were closed. Now, why can't Verizon Wireless Customer Support just call Verizon Wireless One Bill or Verizon Wireless Residential One Bill for me and take care of it? In fact, I bet they even have interoffice e-mail, so perhaps they could do it that way. . . .

Video feedback
Pretty much every Thursday, a group of local bloggers gathers at Harvard Law School's Berkman Center for Internet & Society to talk about, well, everything related to blogging. At one recent meeting, a video crew from ABC's ''Nightline" showed up. Michael Feldman reports on his Dowbrigade site on a surreal aspect of the session:

''ABC was shooting the meeting, Steve [Garfield of Jamaica Plain] was shooting the meeting, Steve was shooting ABC, ABC was shooting Steve shooting ABC. 3 or 4 people were blogging live, there was a parallel [Internet chat] going on, and at least a dozen bloggers were recording impressions and notes for blogging later."

Adam Gaffin follows Boston-area blogs at Universal Hub. Get links to the blogs mentioned today at

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