Beautiful, gorgeous day. Went to the Washington Park and saw some sports. Along for the ride were P. & friends. It was quite fun. Afterwards, a short and unsuccessful bid to buy a cast-iron skillet.
This coming week promises tons of time-wasting activities – at least one of which is to go see SW3. On to the links:
- Maybe someone, somewhere wrote a funnier, harsher review of something. I don’t know. I do know that no one can top Anthony Lane’s particular take on SW3. “Mind you, how Padme got pregnant is anybody’s guess, although I’m prepared to wager that it involved Anakin nipping into a broom closet with a warm glass jar and a copy of Ewok Babes.” hehe.
- On to serious tasks. Er. Actually no. This is still just amusing. Apparently, the Bush administration was cooking up evidence to go to War in Iraq. Some memo leaked out in the British press. Mark Danner lays out the whole hilarious[!] episode in his side-splitting The Secret Way to War in NYRB. Danner re-quotes a WH aide, “We’re an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you’re studying that realityójudiciously, as you willówe’ll act again, creating other new realities, which you can study too, and that’s how things will sort out. We’re history’s actors…and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do.” HILARIOUS!! Danner also publishes the memo. Snore. Just keep the hits coming, yo!
- Also in the NYRB is a profile of Fatah, Hamas and the Palestinian political scene after Arafat. Hussein Agha and Rober Malley’s The Lost Palestinians is, all kidding aside, a must-read. “The central contradiction that has bedeviled the Palestinian national movement since the early 1990s. How can it build state institutions while still under occupation? And how can it resist occupation while in the process of peaceful state-building? Over the years, that contradiction benefited Hamas and consumed Fatah, whose institution-builders became unscrupulous and whose rebels lost their way”.
- There is a war brewing over the Taj Mahal. I, hereby, claim it as mine.
- Asma Jahangir and Safia Siddiqi are winning wars of their own. I salute them.
- Khaleeq Ahmed takes us through the etymology of Lahore, my birthplace. It appears that the residents of Markham Street, Toronto are prone to pronounce it La Whore. That may be, but she has a heart of gold.
- Abdulrazak Gurnah’s By the Sea didn’t leave much of an impression. But, I would like to give Desertion a shot after reading Elleke Boehmer’s review in The Independent. Zanzibar has been on my mind lately. Popo Bawa, and all.
- Lastly, Will Cohu reviews Mike Dash’s Thug: The True Story of India’s Murderous Cult in the Telegraph. CM covered Thugees a while ago. Contrary to Dash’s claim, some revisionists have read Sleeman’s account. Thank you very much.
unrelated: Apple’s OS 10.4 aka Tiger has the Islamic Calendar built-in. I am so geeked right now. Like DOUBLY so.