Friday, October 16

Skewed Spectacles (3#) -

In a TV saga reminiscent of the OJ Simpson white SUV slow-speed chase, American TV obsessively followed a flying saucer balloon yesterday, which displaced other news. This type of spectacle is an increasingly frequent occurrence here, but is finally beginning to come under some criticism.

# The untimely death of billionaire Bruce Wasserstein may put the future of New York Magazine, which is controlled by a family trust, in question. The magazine was originally a spinoff from the late and fondly remembered New York Herald Tribune newspaper. Wall Street mogul Wasserstein paid $55 million for it 5 years ago.

# A new documentary has been produced called
Monty Python: Almost the Truth (The Lawyer's Cut).
This is the 40th anniversary of the group.


Wednesday, October 14

AFPK: New Phase
Expected Soon (6#) -

The Pakistani Army has been gathering a very large number of forces around South Waziristan in order to flush out militants, Al Qaeda cultists, assorted terrorists and their allies from the Pakistani tribal areas. Meanwhile, there's a lot of Trash Talkin' going on . . .

:: What awaits
the Pakistani Army in Waziristan? [BBC]

Ayman al-Zawahiri, Al Qaeda Cult Leader #2, has just released a new video posted Tuesday on the Internet in which he tells Pakistanis: The Pakistani Army has become a complete tool and puppet of the Crusaders against the Pakistani people. NB: There's a comment thread below the article. And here's another article about it.

# Syed Saleem Shahzad conducts an interview from the classic "undisclosed location" with a reputed Qaeda terrorist field commander he calls Ilyas Kashmiri, who is associated with the 313 Brigade and Sheikh Omar Saeed. This is a very long article.

# New Taliban leader in Pakistan Hakimullah Mehsud tells the Pakistani Army: stop following American orders and we will stop our attacks.

# Airport shuttle driver Najibullah Zazi was in contact with an Al Qaeda Cult Bigwig, Mustafa Abu al-Yazid, over the Internet via an intermediary, according to American intelligence officials.


Tuesday, October 13

Writing: Brief Notes (3#) -

It's that time of year again . . .

Frankfurt Book Fair Opens:

:: Spiegel - Good feature article:
-- By Wolfgang Höbel and Andreas Lorenz --

:: LIS News :: brief intro ::

# New from Doha: Al Jazeera Blogs
from its many far-flung correspondents.


Monday, October 12

Hopping The Pond (6#) -

Britain is facing a "winter of discontent"
with strikes looming at the Royal Mail and
at British Airways, which can impact SoFlo.

# The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy is back with Eoin Colfer's sequel, And Another Thing. I expect it will be a delightful stocking-stuffer for some folks this Christmas. They showed the movie on TV here a few weekends ago.

# The London Evening Standard newspaper converts to Free today, but they haven't been able to resolve their distribution issues yet, which may leave some regular readers in the lurch. But we can still read it online :-)

# The Standard reports today that Dame Vera Lynn
has been presented with a lifetime achievement award:

"Her album We'll Meet Again:
The Very Best of Vera Lynn hit the
top spot in the UK album chart last month."

# And, speaking of the Standard, London's Mayor Boris Johnson has become embroiled in dustup over his attempt to appoint the former Editor of that newspaper, Veronica Wadley, to run the Arts Council there.

# Pygmy hedgehogs are
the latest pet craze in the UK.


Sunday, October 11

Bookish & Around The Bend (6#) -

As we near Halloween,
the weirdness quotient seems to be rising . . .

An utterly bizarre - but real life - story about a black woman, Charisse Carney-Nunes, who writes children's books. The author was targeted by Michelle Malkin, a complete stranger, in a vitriolic mob Internet attack, for which Malkin has not apologized. I'm surprised the author didn't try to get a restraining order; I think I would have. Some of these people seem dangerous.

:: WashPost :: [via memeorandum]

# Introducing the Kindle Gutenberg BookReader
[spoof] written by G Xavier Robillard.

# Discussion of the TV show Fringe.
Ken Tucker was watching. I saw it, too.

# Rupert Murdoch has
lost his robot txt file. [slashdot]

# A Science Fiction book
review roundup by Peter Ingham.

# Peter Stothard in a Princeton NJ
discussion about the fate of book reviews.
Jessa Crispin of Bookslut participated.