Friday, February 20, 2004

Oh no. It's another self-pitrying, out-of-touch-with-Americana post. I just watched a pretty funny John Edwards deliver David Letterman's "Top Ten Things Never Before Said By A Presidential Candidate." (Required RealPlayer.)

I've always loved Letterman. And you know what! He's almost totally bald!

Wednesday, February 18, 2004

Calpundit: Word Quiz
What common four-letter word has made the most meteoric rise in linguistic history? Hint: among Canadian (and probably American) 16-year-olds, it now accounts for one of every 20 spoken words...
The answer should be obvious. I actually don't know how I feel about it or what to think of it, to be honest. What gives?

The refreshing thing about working with Czechs... I now work on a daily basis with a woman in her mid-20s who, no joke, punctuates every sentence with a jako or a prostě or several of each (which transliterate as "like" and "just"). Mind you, this includes sentences otherwise spoken in English, as in "I think we should create a new cash flow worksheet, prostì, so we can, jako, keep track of the stocks."

Reminds me of my favorite Czech phrase: Tak žé teda takle, jo? Which means....


Tuesday, February 17, 2004

Catching up on blogging duties....

I wrote something on Fistful of Euroes about EU "free movement of labor" (sic) and Tony Blair's hemming and hawing on the issue.

I also scribbled a "Prague Webwatch" for Prague.TV which should be appearing shortly.

Sunday, February 15, 2004

Haven't written about politics for a while. But here are two things I heard on the grapevine recently.

1. Osama Bin Laden is in Afghanistan, and the U.S. is pretty sure it will capture him in or around May.

2. The photographer Annie Liebovitz is going around telling people that she snorted coke with George W. Bush as late as 1988-1992.

The nice thing about not being famous is that I can actually write these things on my blog and not get into trouble for it. I hope.
The new American ambassador to the Czech Republic, William J. Cabaniss of Birmingham, Alabama, CEO and Chairman of Precision Grinding, dined at Tulip Cafe tonight along with his counterpart from Budapest, George Herbert Walker III (yes, he's Bush Sr's first cousin). I introduced myself and shook hands with them both. They were here for Prague Ensemble Theatre's Sunday cabaret series. Mrs. Cabaniss asked if a lot of restaurants in Prague were open on Sunday. They were all very pleasant, and I wish my Republican grandmother were alive so I could share the news with her.

Earlier this afternoon, a couple of biggish security guys with suits and badges -- from the Czech Police, I believe, not the embassy itself -- came and interrogated our chef about the food. Poked funny little sensors into the all the grub. Examined every nook and cranny of the cafe (and the garden out back) for bombs and Qaedies and whatnot. Took a close look at the gas mains.

And get this: The head security guy had a leather suitcase filled with labeled jars in which he took individual samples of each part of each item the ambassador ordered. A piece of the lamb, a few spoonfulls of the sauce, a little dab of the pea garnish, and half a slice of the forest fruit tart. Each in its own little jar. Thing is, he didn't taste anything before the ambassador ate it. He just packed the jars into the suitcase and took them with him. Odd.

Anyway, something tells me they don't do this sort of thing for the guy from Botswana.