Comparing the story to Pink Floyd's "Dark Side of the Moon," which has a permanent home in the charts, Slate's Jack Shafer offers some valuable lessons that all writers and editors should take away from the piece.
Our favorite is No. 5: "Animals, animals, animals. Let me repeat: Animals, animals, animals. Readers so love animal stories that Slate publishes regular dispatches about dogs and cats from two experienced writers. One of them, whose last name is actually 'Katz,' now contributes to a separate column about roosters, cows, etc., titled 'Rural Life.' The traffic generated by these pieces makes possible the publication of poorly performing columns about the press."