Entries from March 2008

This Is the Most Interesting Thing I've Read In Months

If not years: Wikipedia – Pineapple The word “pineapple”, first recorded in 1398, was originally used to describe the reproductive organs of conifer trees (now termed pine cones). When European explorers discovered this tropical fruit, they called them “pineapples” (term first recorded in that sense in 1664) because it resembled what we know as pine […]

Categories: Food

Ruining My Beijing Fun

The Times – A Beijing boycott won’t work<br/> I resisted the pleas to boycott the Moscow Olympics in 1980. The same arguments apply today, by Colin Moynihan The case at the time was clear to my team-mates and me. Despite the horrors of the Soviet invasion, it was wrong for the Government to ask sportsmen […]

Categories: Sports and Leisure

A Brief History to Pass the Easter Vigil

The Times – Was God in the White House?<br/> Past Notes: we think of presidents as churchgoers, but 11 out of 43 were not members of a church, by Graham Stewart “The White House is the pulpit of the nation,” the American journalist James Reston once claimed, “and the president is its chaplain.” No wonder, […]

Categories: History

I'm In Maui, Day 3!

Since I got here Wednesday evening, does that make it Day 4? I never thought so, but I think for accounting purposes it is… At any rate, I was so wound up last night about all the stuff I had to do today, I could barely sleep all night. So then this morning when I […]

Categories: Wildcard

Do They Make Hot Cross Hawaiian Buns?

The Telegraph – Good Friday sell-out A generation ago, Good Friday at its worst was like Tony Hancock’s Sunday afternoon, a masterclass in ennui. Everything was shut. The pubs were closed by law except for two brief hours at lunchtime. Shops, theatres and museums were shut. Television, in an attempt at solemnity, chose dullness, wedging […]

Categories: People and Current Events

And the View From the Sports Desk

The Times – Right now all the torch represents is China – the sport comes later, by Simon Barnes, Chief Sports Writer At the Olympic Games, bullshit and beauty walk hand in hand. The event totters under the weight of portentous symbols; pious talk of world peace and universal love never ceases; politicians and corporations […]

Categories: Sports and Leisure

I'm In Maui!

Err, yes, I’m in Maui. See? <br/> the buttcrack of dawn was right behind me. ah, jetlag. Sorry, why am I in Maui, you ask? Well, I’m doing a renovation of my grandparents’ old place to turn it into a rental property. Why am I using the first person singular, you ask? Because I’m the […]

Categories: Wildcard

Look Kindly Upon the Poor Rich

Telegraph – Sooner Fed bail-outs than the 1930s revisited, by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard Most would rather relish the delicious moments of Schadenfreude as the bailiff’s gavel falls on their Gulfstream IVs. Yet we must forbear. It was such sentiments that turned the 1930 recession into a slump. “Liquidationists” prevailed: they insisted with Puritan zeal – or […]

Categories: Business & Media

And the International Community Sighs In Relief and Says, "Well That's Okay Then"

BBC – Olympics crisis over squat loos China is rushing to install sit-down loos for its 500,000 foreign Olympics visitors, after complaints that venues had only Asian-style squat toilets. Eh… An appropriately themed preoccupation with the wrong problem needing addressing. I’m filing this under Science and Nature. …Pffffft

Categories: Science and Nature

Not That I'm Saying Eat the Red-Shanked Douc

Telegraph Blogs – Privatise the elephant, by Daniel Hannan Free market principles find validation in even the unlikeliest places. Consider the report that Masai tribesmen have killed four elephants and wounded ten more close to a Kenyan game park. Amid the plunging spears and steaming gore is a lesson in how property rights encourage conservation. […]

Categories: Science and Nature

The Defiant Hair Brigade Reforms

Times Online – Controversial Darrell Hair reinstated as Test umpire Darrell Hair has been reinstated as a Test cricket umpire after the International Cricket Council (ICC) decided the controversial Australian had spent enough time out of the spotlight. Hair has not officiated in a major match since the infamous Oval Test in 2006, when Pakistan […]

Categories: Sports and Leisure

A Who's Who of Designers Who Should Never Design Another Pantsuit Ever Again

This photo slideshow of the “irrepressible” Heather Mills’ divorce appearances, that is. Honestly, who shows up to their divorce in 70s-cum-minstrel wear?

Categories: People and Current Events

Protest Army

Home-bound China-business-traveller Brett McS is going to try to swing past the Terracotta Army in between flights today. Unfortunately, those are the ones at the BM: Times Online – Tibet protesters target Terracotta Army exhibition at British Museum The British Museum’s exhibition of China’s Terracotta Army was today targeted by pro-Tibetan protesters who hung placards […]

Categories: Geography and Foreign Affairs

Wooden Anniversary

So Slate’s asked their pro-Iraq war columnists to mark the fifth anniversary of the invasion by writing mea culpas: Editor’s note: To mark the fifth anniversary of the invasion of Iraq, Slate has asked a number of writers who originally supported the war to answer the question, “Why did we get it wrong?” To which […]

Categories: War and Peace

Which Is Why It's Okay That I Forgot to Remind Peter to Wear Green This Morning

I love that this is on the Beeb’s front page, somehow: BBC – Why is it ‘not’ St Patrick’s Day today? St Patrick’s Day is on 17 March every year. It’s an opportunity for Christians around the world to recognise the life of the patron saint of Ireland. … This year the extremely early arrival […]

Categories: People and Current Events