Wednesday, September 29, 2004

How Frugal Is Gourmet?

A practical new cookbook from the famously extravagant magazine. By Laura Shapiro.

Barcelona clubbers get chipped

BBC Science producer Simon Morton goes clubbing in Barcelona with a microchip implanted in his arm to pay for drinks.

In the UK, guys still go out drinking with chips on their shoulders.


They've Outlived the Stigma

Once pariahs in Japan, 'kamikaze survivors' are now honored for their spirit of sacrifice. They resent being lumped in with suicide bombers.
LA Times

We visited the Fleet Air Arm museum a few years ago, and - much to my astonishment - the letters written by kamikaze pilots to their families before they set off on what was in almost every case their last flight were sincere, resigned, and desparately moving.

I would have thought that they would be fanatical ramblings but nothing could have been further from the truth. They weren't even particularly idealistic, often they were clear eyed about the inadequacies of their system, yet somehow their fatalism seemed, if anything, noble.

Nobility is a dangerous thing.
Granta: 'The Handbag Studio' by Thomas Keneally
Trying Really Hard To Like India - Step 2: Escaping backpackers by traveling in style. By Seth Stevenson
Trying Really Hard To Like India - Step 2: Escaping backpackers by traveling in style. By Seth Stevenson
Flirting With Disaster - The vile spectacle of Democrats rooting for bad news in Iraq and Afghanistan. By Christopher Hitchens

Tuesday, September 28, 2004

Salon | Tiger Woods: "cablinasian like me
Wired News: Engineering God in a Petri Dish: "On a steep, narrow street above Chinatown works Jonathon Keats, a tweed-suited, bow-tied 32-year-old who, with assistance from a phalanx of scientists, is genetically engineering God in his apartment. "
SIR PERCY SYKES K.C.I.E., C.M.G., C.B. (1867-1945)
Telegraph | Opinion | EUtopia is over join the real world Mark Steyn

Tuesday, September 21, 2004

Confessions of an Elephant Polo Groupie - Tailgating in Thailand with the ladyboys. By Cynthia?Barnes Reminds me of Kevin.
Wired News: Free Content Still Sells
Telegraph | Opinion | It's dangerous to get rid of men in tights
Download details: Speech Recognition Profile Manager Tool (SpProfileMgr.exe)
The New York Times > Magazine > Who Was Abused? What horror.
Rewriting the Koran: "The Wahhabi Koran is notable in that, while Muslims believe that their sacred text was dictated by God and cannot be altered, the Saudi English version adds to the original so as to change its sense in a radical direction. For example, the opening chapter, or surah, is known as Fatiha, and is recited in Muslim daily prayer and (among non-Wahhabis) as a memorial to the dead. The four final lines of Fatiha read, in a normal rendition of the Arabic original (such as this translation by N.J. Dawood, published by Penguin Books): Guide us to the straight path, / The path of those whom You have favored, / Not of those who have incurred Your wrath, / Nor of those who have gone astray."

"The Wahhabi Koran renders these lines: Guide us to the Straight Way. / The Way of those on whom You have bestowed Your Grace, not (the way) of those who have earned Your Anger (such as the Jews), nor of those who went astray (such as the Christians). The Wahhabi Koran prints this translation alongside the Arabic text, which contains no reference to either Jews or Christians."
Riding with Alexander: "getting the right elephants"

Monday, September 20, 2004

Telegraph | Opinion | All the good things they never tell you about today's Iraq Mark Steyn.
BBC NEWS | Technology | Broadband starts to rival dial-up: "
More and more people are switching to broadband
Broadband has out-stripped unmetered dial-up connections in the UK for the first time, official figures show. "

Friday, September 17, 2004

spiked-liberties | Column | Hunting clash: the illiberal in pursuit of the unsanitised: "What happened was that five men in t-shirts got on to the floor of the House of Commons, shouted some slogans and pointed fingers - not, note, guns or pikestaffs - at the few MPs present, as a protest against the latest move to ban foxhunting. It was not the most politically literate of protests, perhaps, and such stunts certainly do more to connect a minority cause with a wider public than does dressing up as Batman and scaling palace walls. But an historic 'desecration of the basic principles of democracy and law'? Hardly. These must be pretty fragile things in modern Britain if they really can be so easily endangered by a handful of foxhunting chaps armed with nothing more than some brass neck." | The Muslim world

Thursday, September 16, 2004

The Diversity
Name Games - The folly in the attempts to define "African-American." By Richard Thompson?Ford: "Arguments about the correct definition of racial identity are this century's version of medieval scholastic theologians' debates about how many angels can dance on the head of a pin. They seem to be of vital moral and spiritual importance, involving many contested terms, conceptual puzzles, and facts not in evidence. They're a great way for smart people to pass the time until the bartender pours the next round."
malabar rebellion I noticed a reference to Malabar in the 20s on a Gurkha statue in London earlier this week. He is the unhappy explanation. I had niavely hoped that Kerala avoided this sortt of thing.
Burning Bushes - A reader's guide to Kitty Kelley's The Family. By Bryan Curtis
Dispatches From Hong Kong - Hong Kong's biggest obsession isn't politics or even cell phones; it's food. By Daisann?McLane
Poetry Magazine Joseph Epstein on the US and UK Poet Laurette.
Hidden Mysteries Books"none dare call it conspiracy" - years ago I worked with a boke who explained everything in the light of this book. Never saw a reference to it anywhere before this.

Monday, September 13, 2004

BBC NEWS | England | Humber | Chief constable returns to duties Buried climbdown by Blunkett.
Telegraph | Opinion | If you've got a tattoo, you'll always love Cisco: "When he copped for an arrow on top of Senlac Hill in 1066, King Harold's body was identified among the pile-up of his followers because he had the words 'Edith' and 'England' tattooed on his chest. "
The New York Times > Magazine > Shakespeare's Leap

Friday, September 10, 2004

spiked-life | Column | Offside, 10 September: "'Garrincha was the half-crippled, illiterate inspiration of Brazil's football awakening. He was also a chronic alcoholic who lost his virginity to a goat."
BBC NEWS | World | South Asia | Architects urged to copy India: "Renowned Indian architect Charles Correa has said housing designs from his home country offer the key to eco-friendly buildings of the future.
Correa, who is famed for design principles based on low-density, low cost architecture at a reduced environmental cost, wants architects to examine low-rise, high-density urban areas such as Rajasthan as a way of best using natural and local resources.
'The basic principle of housing in a country like India is that you have very limited resources,' Correa told BBC World Service's Masterpiece programme.
'Therefore you have to use great ingenuity. That's when you really learn to respect what traditionally is done.
'If you look at a village in Kerala, everything is re-used and recycled. Leaves which fall from palm trees are used again for the roofs."
A Thousand Killed - What a little-known British poet named Bernard Spencer knew. By Christopher Hitchens | Outsourcing to India Bangalore and NOIDA!
Allchin's last stand? | Tech News on ZDNet Allchin's last stand.
New Statesman: "Beslan and 9/11 are leading millions of Muslims to search their souls. Even clerics now question the harshest traditional laws and look for a more humane interpretation of their faith. By Ziauddin Sardar"

Thursday, September 09, 2004

The Graydon Lost Bag. How about that as an oppoartunity for Bumblebee.
The Arabian Nights

Turmeric to the rescue

The news will please any curry lover - spicy food may protect against cancer.

Asian spice turmeric, which gives dishes their distinctive yellow colour, can protect the body against damage that leads to cancers, in particular leukaemia.

Taste of London - "Taste of London
London is vibrant, cosmopolitan, artistic and a magnet for talent in food, art and entertainment. With no fewer than 34 Michelin Stars in the centre alone and some of the world?s best theatres, orchestras and galleries, there's no better city worth celebrating. Taste of London is a four-day festival celebrating the Capital?s diverse restaurant and entertainment scene. Here is the opportunity to experience up to 30 of the city?s finest restaurants and a wide range of fabulous entertainment, all in one stunning location. "
Guardian Unlimited | The Guardian | In a secret Paris cavern, the real underground cinema: "The perforating Mexicans"

Tuesday, September 07, 2004

Enjoyment: "Elmore Leonard, writer of Get Shorty, has long been Hollywood's favourite author. Sholto Byrnes meets the implausibly modest doyen of American crime fiction"
The Auction prices.
Telegraph | Opinion | Bush-beating is nothing but snobbery

Monday, September 06, 2004

Telegraph | Opinion | A 'civilisation' afraid to comfort children: "Across the country, families will be going through the annual return-to-school ritual. Filled with the optimism of a fresh start, caring parents will ruffle their offspring's hair, stick an apple in their satchel and wave them off at the gate as they run, care-free, down the road to school.
Or rather, this being 2004, the procedure will involve chucking a Krazy Cheez Dipper into the Marilyn Manson lunchbox, before bodily lifting them away from the computer, where they are downloading the new Libertines album on to their iPod, and hurling them into the 4x4 for the treacherous 200-yard drive to school, hoping that they might just breakfast on a Pop-Tart on the way"
sp!ked-IT | Article | Culture warrior: "The failure of imagination is that we can't really imagine how culture could be produced, other than concentrated industries producing and broadcasting. So anything that conflicts with that sounds extreme."
Chechnya - What drives the separatists to commit such terrible outrages? By Masha?Gessen: "In June 1995, a group of rebels emerged from what seemed at the time to be a nearly defeated Chechnya and tried to take over the small Russian town of Budyonnovsk. Dozens of armed men ended up barricading themselves in the local hospital, where the patients, including women with their newborns, became their hostages. Russian troops tried to storm the building but aborted the attack quickly. In the end, Moscow negotiated a cease-fire in Chechnya and let the terrorists get away in exchange for the hostages' release. Immediately after Budyonnovsk, Russia started peace negotiations with the Chechen rebels, making the hospital siege probably the most successful act of terrorism in history. It is also the only large-scale hostage-taking that didn't end in a storm." That is something I didn;t know.

Friday, September 03, 2004

First Class - Is it possible to raise rich kids who don't have a sense of entitlement? By Debra?Dickerson: "Listening to my 3-year-old go on the other day about motor boats, preschool, lake houses, Vietnamese food, and skiing at Steamboat Springs, I felt a moment of vertigo followed by panic" Debra Dickerson can write. Vertigo is the clincher here.
Eureka! Bok Choy!: When Do Chefs Create?: "Fricassee of Thai snapper with frogs legs, porcini and ham 'jus' pheasant with blueberries and chocolate sauce coffee-crusted sirloin steak."
Telegraph | Arts | Fathers, sons, feuds and myths Waugh talk
Telegraph | Opinion | Blair's seven key challenges add up to just one thing higher taxes | Outsourcing to India
The Telegraph - Calcutta : Frontpage: "Indian voices in Bush pitch
- Geography error blows lid off campaign outsourcing "

Thursday, September 02, 2004

Guardian Unlimited | Online | Ringing the changes: "An irresistable digression: the Afghan government's telephone network obviously needed to have outside lines and, being VoIP, these could be connected anywhere in the world. They ended up as numbers with a Northampton dial code, and for a few confusing weeks, the Afghan foreign ministry's number in Kabul was one digit off a Northamptonshire butcher's shop. You can imagine the ensuing consequences until, tiring of the continual orders for sausages, the ministry insisted on a number change. "

Bruce Lee statue for Bosnian city

Kung-fu legend Bruce Lee is to be honoured with a statue in the war-torn Bosnian city of Mostar.

A statue of the action hero is intended to remind people of Lee's "loyalty, friendship, skill and justice".

The city remains ethnically split with Bosnian Muslims, Croats and Serbs divided since the 1992-95 war.

Writer Veselin Gatalo said: "Lee is a true international hero and is a hero to all ethnicities in Bosnia and that's why we picked him."

ic Southlondon - Send these rats packing
Telegraph | Opinion | Walking the midnight streets in Manhattan, yet I feared no evil
BBC NEWS | Business | Microsoft launches iTunes rival