They've been knocking over piggie buildings for years. Isn't it about time those birds did something crazier? Rovio sure thinks so, and with Angry Birds Go!, the feathered flappers take to the hills in a wild racing game with karts a-plenty. It's got power-ups, a variety of modes, multiple vehicles to choose from and customize, and yeah, piggies to torment. All in the name of a first prize cake! Tagged as: angrybirds, arcade, free, game, ios, ipad, iphone, microtransactions, mobile, racing, rating-y, rovio, tablet
I think the British love sandwiches more than anyone else in the world. Walk into any shop, and I do mean any . . . and you are sure to find a variety of them, ready made, wrapped and for sale to anyone who feels in the need for some potable and portable sustenance of the this kind. AND, they come in varities which are suitable for any meal of the day . . . breakfast, lunch, dinner or snack!
I recently treated myself to Nigel Slater's latest cookbook, eat. You all know how I love Nigel and his way of cooking and eating. That man could make anything look and sound tasty and he is the master as creating delicious and fast food out of just about anything you can get your hands on. He has one whole chapter in this book devoted to sandwiches and the like. My kind of guy. My kind of cooking.
One in particular intrigued me and set my tastebuds to tingling. This was a sandwich he created using crusty bread, beef drippings and leftover roast from the sunday dinner. Reading about it . . . made me want one, and reading about it . . . inspired me to create my own version. I got to thinking hash . . . roast beef hash . . . in a bun.
And so that is what I did. I made some hash using chopped potatoes, chopped onions, chopped cabbage and some of the leftover roast from yesterday's pot roast. I seasoned it lightly with some salt and cracked black pepper . . .
Added a touch of herb . . . in the way of summer savoury, and a hint of snap by using some Worcestershire Sauce and a dash of brown sauce. (steak sauce to you North Americans) I cooked that all together until the potatoes and onions and cabbage were gilded with little caramelized edges, all golden brown and sweet . . . and the meat was falling apart once more . . .
And then I stogged it between two halves of a crisp warm ciabatta roll . . . the bottom spread with just a touch of creamed horseradish sauce . . . a slice of Leerdammer Toastie cheese layed on top of the hot hash, so it melted down into all those gilded crevices, and topped by that crisp roll-top . . . all that goodness tucked into a tasty and lightly crisped ciabatta suitcase and just waiting for me to tuck in . . .
Good things happen when Nigel inspires me. Tasty things. Things I want to indluge in again, and again . . . and again. I am never disappointed.
a handful of chopped cabbage
To serve, slice each ciabatta roll in half. Spread the bottoms with some horseradish sauce (if desired) and then pile an equal amount of the hot hash on top. Top each with a slice of toastie cheese and then the top of the rolls. Serve immediately. Pass the brown sauce or ketchup if desired.
As CBS This Morning faces the music about its inappropriate and insensitive use of Toto’s “Africa” to score a montage from Mandela’s funeral, we asked Rumpus author Steve Almond, a Toto “Africa” expert (see video below), what he thinks. Almond had this to say:
In a world gone almost completely mad, thank goodness we have a show like ‘CBS This Morning,’ which has finally (and at long last) given Toto’s transcendent anthem of cultural sensitivity a worthy human counterpart. One hates to speculate about such things, but it seems pretty obvious that Apartheid would have ended a lot sooner if Toto had not been so misunderstood, maligned, and marginalized during its lifetime.
Almond’s brilliant deconstruction of the Toto song “Africa” is also available in his book Rock and Roll Will Save Your Life.
Your disenchantment is a threat to our socialist faith.
--E. P. Thompson
Some quick notes on the passages from Postwar which I alluded to in the last post. In terms of the atheist style, a couple of examples should suffice. The first is Judt looking at the impact of Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn's The Gulag Archipelago on socialist intellectuals of Europe, and particularly Paris:
Communism, it was becoming clear, had defiled and despoiled its radical heritage. And it was continuing to do so, as the genocide in Cambodia and the widely-publicized trauma of the Vietnamese ‘boat people’ would soon reveal.256 Even those in Western Europe—and they were many—who held the United States largely responsible for the disasters in Vietnam and Cambodia, and whose anti-Americanism was further fuelled by the American-engineered killing of Chile’s Salvador Allende just three months before the publication of The Gulag Archipelago, were increasingly reluctant to conclude as they had once done that the Socialist camp had the moral upper hand. American imperialism was indeed bad—but the other side was worse, perhaps far worse.
At this point the traditional ‘progressive’ insistence on treating attacks on Communism as implicit threats to all socially-ameliorative goals—i.e. the claim that Communism, Socialism, Social Democracy, nationalization, central planning and progressive social engineering were part of a common political project—began to work against itself. If Lenin and his heirs had poisoned the well of social justice, the argument ran, we are all damaged. In the light of twentieth-century history the state was beginning to look less like the solution than the problem, and not only or even primarily for economic reasons. What begins with centralized planning ends with centralized killing.
And later on the impact of François Furet's La Révolution Française:
The political implications of Furet’s thesis were momentous, as its author well understood. The failings of Marxism as a politics were one thing, which could always be excused under the category of misfortune or circumstance. But if Marxism were discredited as a Grand Narrative—if neither reason nor necessity were at work in History—then all Stalin’s crimes, all the lives lost and resources wasted in transforming societies under state direction, all the mistakes and failures of the twentieth century’s radical experiments in introducing Utopia by diktat, ceased to be ‘dialectically’ explicable as false moves along a true path. They became instead just what their critics had always said they were: loss, waste, failure and crime. Furet and his younger contemporaries rejected the resort to History that had so coloured intellectual engagement in Europe since the beginning of the 1930s. There is, they insisted, no ‘Master Narrative’ governing the course of human actions, and thus no way to justify public policies or actions that cause real suffering today in the name of speculative benefits tomorrow.
I've allude to this sense in Judt's work before--the idea that there is no "Master Narrative," no ghost in the machinery of the universe, no arc bending toward justice. It is, to me, one of the most arresting aspects of the book. It's not that Judt is amoral or disinterested--his heart is clearly with the Left. But he greets his ostensible allies with ice-water vision. , which is to say he subjects his own ideological roots and his own ideological cousins to withering criticism.
Journalists, writers and thinkers are often hailed for their willingness to engage "the pieties of both the left and the right" or some such. Whenever I see that kind of language my eyes glaze over. A willingness to critique both sides isn't evidence of any particular wisdom--the critique could simply be wrong. (Journalists, in particular, make this mistake with alarming regularity.) False equivalence isn't nuance. And moderation in writing style isn't depth. But there is something to be said for real nuance. For trying one's best to see clearly. This book is not simply offering me more information, it's offering me a method of attempting to get clear.
Everything isn't what it should be. The lack of footnotes is a huge problem. (Sorry Dad. That one hurts.) Still I think Postwar qualifies as a "knock you on your ass" book.
Um, do I need to say why this is a shit idea? I don't even need to say it, because it was all over the news:
1. Disabled people
2. Elderly people
3. People who appreciate conveniences that come with living in a civilization
As one of my friends put it, the purpose of a public service is not to make money, it's to provide a public service.
And fuck it, I like getting letters in the mail. It's nice. Some things can't be replaced by e-mail, including getting nice postcards when friends travel and getting my Metropass and pay cheques and such.
Naturally, junk mail will still be delivered to houses, because the free market r0xx0rz.
Comments by Tony Dolan, CCD National Chairperson, at December 3rd Breakfast Hosted by Ministers Flaherty and Kenney.
Thank you Minister Flaherty and Minister Kenney we appreciate your support and willingness to celebrate with us International Day of Persons with Disabilities.
I want to recognize representatives of some other disability organizations who are here with CCD and the Canadian Association for Community Living (CACL).
“When a nonfiction author decides to write a book, she starts hunting for a story and writes up a book proposal. When a celebrity decides to pen her memoirs, she calls her agent.”
At Priceonomics, Alex Mayyasi gets deep into the ghostwriting business, revealing the procedure and the value of writing someone else’s book in a feature totally worth reading.
I was right to be wrong, while you and your kind were wrong to be right.
I have the misfortune of being near the end of Tony Judt's Postwar at a moment when of the great figures of our history, Nelson Mandela, has passed. Judt's gaze is relentless. He rejects all grand narratives, skewers Utopianism (mostly in the form of Communism), and eschews the notion that history has definite shape and form. States are mostly amoral. In one breath he will write admiringly of the Nordic countries. In the next he will detail their descent into eugenics in the mid-20th century.
This is what I mean when I say that Judt has an atheist view of history. God does not care about history, and history does not care about humans. There is no triumphalism, in Postwar, about Western values and democracy. What you see is a continent at war with itself. The upholding of democratic values is a constant struggle, often lost—in the colonies, in the Eastern bloc, in Greece, in Portugal, in Spain. Even among the great Western powers there is the sense that no one is immune to the virus of authoritarianism.
There is great humility in Judt's portrait of Europe, a humility that is largely absent from the portrait of the West foisted upon the darker peoples of the world. Non-African writers love to congratulate Nelson Mandela on not becoming another "Mugabe," as though despotism is something Africans are uniquely tempted toward; as though colonialism was not, itself, a form of kleptocratic despotism. I too am happy that Mandela did not become another Mugabe. I am happier still that he did not become—as far as these analogical games go—another Leopold.
This Western arrogance is as broad as it is insidious. There was a well-reported piece in the Times a few days ago on the disappointment that's followed Mandela's presidency. A similar note has been sounded in seemingly every obit and article concerning Mandela's death. It's not so much that these stories shouldn't be written, it's that they shouldn't treated the subject as though a man were biting a dog. That people are shocked that South Africa, almost 20 years out of apartheid, is struggling with fairness and democracy, reflects a particular ignorance, a particular blindness, and a peculiar lack of humility, about our own struggles.
On the great issue of the day, the generations that followed George Washington offered not just disappointment but betrayal. "The unfortunate condition of the people whose labors I in part employed," Washington wrote, "has been the only unavoidable subject of regret." Americans did not simply tolerate this "unfortunate condition," they turned it into the cornerstone of the American economic system. By 1860, 60 percent of all American exports came from cotton produced by slave labor. "Property in man" was, according to Yale historian David Blight, worth some $3.5 billion more than "all of America's manufacturing, all of the railroads, all of the productive capacity of the United States put together."
In short order, Washington's slaveholding descendants went from evincing skepticism about slavery to calling it "a positive good" and "a great physical, philosophical, and moral truth." And they did this while plundering and raiding this continent's aboriginal population. For at least its first 100 years, or perhaps longer, this country was a disappointment, an experiment which—by its own standards of life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness—failed miserably. America is not unique. It is the product of imperfect humans. As is South Africa. That people turn to the country of Nelson Mandela and wonder why it hasn't magically transformed itself into a perpetual font of milk and honey is a symptom of our blindness to our common humanity.
Nowhere is that blindness more apparent then in the constant, puerile need to critique Mandela's turn toward violence. The impulse is old. "Why Won't Mandela Renounce Violence?" asked a New York Times column in 1990. Is that what we said to Savimbi? To Mobutu?
Malcolm X understood:
If violence is wrong in America, violence is wrong abroad. If it is wrong to be violent defending black women and black children and black babies and black men, then it is wrong for America to draft us, and make us violent abroad in defense of her. And if it is right for America to draft us, and teach us how to be violent in defense of her, then it is right for you and me to do whatever is necessary to defend our own people right here in this country.
Martin Luther King Jr. agreed:
As I have walked among the desperate, rejected and angry young men, I have told them that Molotov cocktails and rifles would not solve their problems ... But, they asked, what about Vietnam? They asked if our own nation wasn't using massive doses of violence to solve its problems, to bring about the changes it wanted. Their questions hit home, and I knew that I could never again raise my voice against the violence of the oppressed in the ghettos without having first spoken clearly to the greatest purveyor of violence in the world today, my own government.
As did Mandela. Offered the chance to be free by the avowed white supremacist P.W. Botha if he would renounce violence, Mandela replied, “Let him renounce violence.” Americans should understand this. Violent resistance to tyranny, violent defense of one's body, is not simply a political strategy in our country, it is taken as a basic human right. Our own revolution was purchased with the blood of 22,000 nascent American dead. Dissenters were tarred and feathered. American independence and American power has never rested on nonviolence, but on the willingness to do great—at times existential—violence.
Perhaps we would argue that Malcolm X, Mandela, and King were wrong, and that states should be immune to ethics of nonviolence. But even our rhetoric toward freedom movements which employ violence is inconsistent. Mandela and the ANC were "terrorists." The Hungarian revolutionaries of 1956, the Northern Alliance opposing the Taliban, the Libyans opposing Gaddafi were "freedom fighters." Thomas Friedman hopes for an "Arab Mandela" one moment, while the next telling those same Arabs to "suck on this." The point here is not that nonviolence is bunk, but that it is is bunk when invoked by those who rule by the gun.
In the shadow of our conversation, one sees a constant, indefatigable specter which has dogged us from birth. For the most of American history, very few of our institutions believed that black people were entitled to the rights of other Americans. Included in this is the right of self-defense. Nonviolence worked because it conceded that right in the pursuit of other rights. But one should never lose sight of the precise reasons why America preaches nonviolence to some people while urging other people to arms.
Jimmy Baldwin knew:
The real reason that nonviolence is considered to be a virtue in Negroes—I am not speaking now of its racial value, another matter altogether—is that white men do not want their lives, their self-image, or their property threatened. One wishes they would say so more often.
The questions which dog us about Mandela's legacy, his relationship to other African autocrats, the great imperfections which remain in his country, and his insistence on the right of self-defense ultimately say more about us than they do about Mandela. "I cannot sell my birthright," Mandela responded to calls for him to renounce violence. "Nor am I prepared to sell the birthright of the people to be free."
This is a universal appeal, and our inability to see such universality in those who are black, or in those who oppose our stated interests, reveal the borders of all our grand talk about democratic values. That is the next frontier. A serious embrace of universality. A rejection of selective morality.
I thought risk looked like thick needles and greasy testosterone, a best guess at 30 years old that could never hold the sweaty nights I spent running pros and cons in my head, as if a checklist might lead me back to myself, as if I were a man who just needed to be sanded out. I was terrified of being wrong, though now right and wrong feel bitter and strange, like someone else’s language, mean and small in my mouth.
I thought I knew risk because I could inventory what I’ve lost: my ghost self, trapped in pictures that my mom doesn’t know what to do with, the soft muscle of not just my body but the body of the woman I used to hold against it, the story I’d built so carefully to hold the twin that I’ve become: Thomas.
I thought the risk was in that name and the hope it held: that someday I’d hear it and know I was the man in the sound.
But that risk is crude, like the child stumbling on the yellow strip near the train tracks at Canal Street. Truth isn’t a risk; it’s a process. Risk is a different animal entirely, a wild, wondrous, last-call night in Manhattan, a cab ride home as the morning rises up in greeting like a body built just for me.
Risk is a choice, trading what’s probable for what’s possible, a bet on something bigger than muscle and facial hair and a name that sounds so good when you say it the right way, like falling in love.
Risk is holding still at the top of the Empire State Building as the elevators go up and down until I can close my eyes and feel my heart slide in tandem, greased rails right to my stomach, dizzy with the way the space between me and everyone else has collapsed, how my body can meet yours on a dance floor or the corner of a bar and I can risk staying open to you because I’m an unfolding story without a self to lose.
Even stories lose their boundaries. I need to be here, all skin and beard and elevator heart, where everything happens at once: the people we’ve been and the people we’re becoming creating a weird physics, time bending us toward each other, nine million stories bumping into the night, each of us calling the others home.
So I risk it, and I am rewarded by moments like this one in a bar in the Lower East Side, where a man with a shock of bangs flips open the piano and hushes the drunks with some sparkly Ray Charles. I risk it, and the cab drives on, cold air on my face and the sunrise low and pink. I get home and can’t sleep but I don’t believe in pros and cons any more than right or wrong anymore. I just can’t keep my eyes off the sun. I no longer ask myself what kind of man I am. I see him everywhere: in the flirty drag queen, the piano man, the witchy woman who met my gaze on the L on a night too long ago and my elevator heart crashed right into her, a bend in time that taught me to be in love with each of you, but the risky prospect most of all.