Saturday, October 08, 2005

Would the BBC please stop using the word "literally" for emphasis. The woman just reported from Delhi that the earthquake survivors being airlifted out of Indian-controlled Kashmir are "literally just the tip of the iceberg." Is that so.

Friday, October 07, 2005

The following incidents made the Jackson County, Indiana, Tribune's crime log:

Citizen dispute involving a cat shot with a pellet gun... Family dispute involving shoving... Disturbance involving a 13-year-old refusing to mow the grass... Possible methamphetamine lab items found... Male juvenile throwing tomatoes at a woman’s residence... Suspicious activity involving a multi-colored painted bus loaded with kids asking for money... Welfare check involving a teenager holding a sign stating their willingness to go anywhere.
God bless America!

Thursday, October 06, 2005

I just learned that Lebanon has one of the highest nose job rates in the world.

I also discovered my local supermarket tonight. It has a better selection (in terms of "Western goods," or at least American goods) than just about every place in Prague. And the prices are less than highway robbery.

UPDATE: The link was wrong. I fixed it. You can read about nose jobs now.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Also - I don't remember where it was, but stored way back there I have a memory of reading, somewhere, about Arab television's obsession with the movie Three Men and a Baby.

Can anybody back me up on this? Is this recorded somewhere? Because it was one of the first things I saw when I turned on the TV today. I'm not kidding.

It was a bit like that day when I was a little kid and I looked very closely at a snowflake that fell onto my glove and I realized, for the first time, that snowflakes really do make designs.
Slate does serious rock geekery with a review of the Gang of Four return album: Seize the Time - Gang of Four and the eternal returns of retro rock.

Could it be that Return is saying, "You want a Gang of Four resurrection? Here you are, then, exactly what you secretly, deep-down crave: the old songs, again."
The serious rock geek question is, Does anybody remember the Television comeback? I don't, and I even bought the album.


I moved into a new apartment today. It's a huge place with all the fixings. It's hard to believe the most frustrating thing (so far, at least) is that I can't figure out how to send e-mail using Outlook Express on my computer. It's a little over my budget, but still a steal. I'll probably look for a roommate to reduce the costs.

I'm in the Mohandiseen area of Cairo. I'll be here for three months futzing about - perhaps signing up for some Arabic courses, hopefully going to Syria to visit an archaeological dig later this month.

There's something absolutely Mars-like about Cairo. Seriously, I don't even recognize the fruits and vegetables.

The first day I was here, I stood up on the balcony of my hotel wondering what Cairo would be like if it were completely deserted - say, after a neutron bomb explosion.

The odd thing is, around sundown during the four weeks of Ramadan, that's exactly what happens. No, not a neutron bomb, goofball - I mean the streets are deserted.

The reason is, nobody eats all day, and as dusk, everybody rushes home to eat with their family, all 22 million people at once. If you have any sense what the city is like during most hours of the day and night, it's really disconcerting. You can almost think for a few moments.

After dinner, the kids start throwing fire crackers.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

OK, what kind of dumb-ass moves to Egypt the day before Ramadan starts?

Today I had one of those moments, one of those moments when you think to yourself, "Did I actually just get out of the taxi and start pushing it? Why yes, I did!"