Thursday, May 06, 2004

I like Friends, as a guilty pleasure seen only on video... And this seems quite true...

Friends - A great soap opera masquerading as a great sitcom. By Chris Suellentrop
Kautilyan: Ret. Gen Odom: Pull Out: "'We have failed,' Mr. Odom declares bluntly. 'The issue is how high a price we're going to pay. ... Less, by getting out sooner, or more, by getting out later?'
His is not the voice of an isolationist, or a peacenik, or Republican-hater. He is talking from the conservative Hudson Institute, where he was hired years ago by Mitch Daniels, later Mr. Bush's budget director. "

Tuesday, May 04, 2004

Two tidbits of local interest only.

First, please come to Tulip Cafe (Opatovicka 3, P1) this Sunday afternoon and celebrate.... well, celebrate celebrating.

It's a Sunday BBQ Party and the "official" Grand Opening of Tulip's garden. (We painted the deck.) For the low low price of CZK 300 you get a whole lotta stuff to consume: All-you-can-eat tofu, grilled veggies, shrimp, oh yes and surely some beef and chicken as well (don't ask me to cook it for you, we have people for that). All-you-get-drink beer, wine and a glass of spring punch to welcome you. (Please, buy the cocktails. Beer and wine is so... unbecoming on cultivated readers like yourselves.)

In fact this also functions as a going-away party for our chef, the man behind the magic, Gavin Barber, who's putting his last shrimp on the barbie and heading back to his native Australia sooner than I care to think about.

It's a shame we didn't get our act together to announce this sooner, otherwise this event might have merited a mention someplace in the Prague Post calendar or food section (under what heading, I'm not sure). Readers, if you ever need to reach local expat readers and promote anything, plan ahead and try to get something into the Post. They devoted all of two or three sentences to Tulip's Easter brunch and the place was packed.

I mention this as a segueway into ...

OK, if this is the second time you've read this -- mea culpa. Mea summa culpa. Here's a correction:

Apparently the back page of the most recent Prague Post features a Benson & Hedges ad. Originally, somebody sort-of in the know (but not quite enough in the know) emailed me the following tale: When the Post first accepted cigarette advertising, Levy wore a surgical mask to the office in protest for several days, in fact. (We knew that much: See here for a picture of Levy with the mask, and here.) Levy swore that if the paper ever accepted cigarette advertising again, he'd quit. (I can't easily verify this, sadly enough.)

Now it certainly appeared that the Post began accepting cigarette ads just as soon as he died. But a second Postie emailed to say these ads were in fact negotiated months before Levy's death and started running before that as well. If he were around today, Levy would once again be walking around the Post offices with a mask on in protest. End of mea culpa.

As I said orignally... If I were running a newspaper, I'd probably accept cigarette advertising as well, much as I hate cigarettes. (What moral high ground could I possibly claim? I'm a vegetarian plugging my own all-you-can-eat for-profit BBQ dedicated primarily to meat consumption.) Readers of this also blog know that while I'm as guilty as anybody else of taking potshots at the Prague Post, when the chips are down I'll defend the Post over every other English-language publication in town. [But there are no other English-language rags left standing! - Ed. Precisely.]

P.S. In the comments, George Cerny has it almost right. Even when the Post had some competition to speak of -- which it doesn't anymore -- I thought it did a better job of what it set out to do than most people gave it credit for.

No more inside baseball!
Gooseeggs. That's what the front page comments section looks like. Guys, I'm really not feeling the love.
You've got to watch this Slovenian political ad. OK, it's not going to blow you away, but it's pretty strange, especially coming from a supposedly "socially conservative" political party. (I think those words mean something different in Slovenia.) From Carniola:

The ad (you can watch it here) shows a pretty young woman lying happily in bed, presumably post coitus. We see a naked man walking into the bathroom to shower. (Gratuitous arse shot included.) The smiling lady leisurely gets up and accidentally discovers, among the man's possessions, a membership form for the LDS. (The left-of-center party that currently rules Slovenia.)
You can sort of guess what happens next. It involves a brief thong-shot.

I found this on the blog The Glory of Carniola via Blogo Slovo's new home.

Speaking of Slovenian blogs, it seems there are a helluva lotta them. In addition to Carniola, here are a few:

2 Much Beauty
Andrej Budja's blog
Nelit’s blog

There are more here, but these are the English ones that jumped out.

While I'm at it, don't forget Siberian Light, which is filled with weird news from Russia, like the $30,000 cruises to Athens that a bunch of Duma deputies were just caught buying. ("Caught" because with their official salaries, they'd have to save money for 10-15 years to afford that; OK, so maybe this is not so weird in Russia.)

Better still... A nine-ton radar tower, a "secret" military installation in Central Russia, has been stolen by scrap metal scavengers. That's right, stolen, as in it's no longer there. They took it. Swiped it. Nicked it. Pilfered it. Absconded with it.

Monday, May 03, 2004

Jeffrey is blogging. Jeff's a good friend of mine here in Prague. If he keeps it up, I suspect he'll be sort of surprised at how many people end up reading his blog. Not that this is a competition, but his May 1 post is better than mine, so don't waste your time here -- go read it.
This American in Amsterdam asks why there are no screens on windows throughout Europe. I've been wondering the same thing for years. Last summer I spent a good portion of every day chasing flies around the apartment. I hate flies.
BBC NEWS | Magazine | Teenage kissing: The new sex crime?

Cottaging? Grooming? DOGGING? What the hell? Can anybody help me out here?