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Writing Worth Reading
He ard The One About The World's Oldest Joke?
Paul McDonald | Independent | 19 December 2010
It's a cracker! A history of jokes from ancient times. Fart jokes date back
at least to Sumeria in 1900BC. Lettuce a reliable cause of hilarity in
ancient Greece, by virtue of its supposed aphrodisiac properties.
We Let A Wolf In
Neely Tucker | WP | 19 December 2010
Small church in Virginia needed new minister. Found seemingly perfect
candidate: 66, ordained, ex-Navy, soft-spoken. Turned out later he was also
a murderer, thief, adulterer. And a hard man to get along with
Fix Your Password In Five Minutes
Farhad Manjoo | Slate | 17 December 2010
Take an easily memorable phrase. Turn the first letters into an acronym.
Throw in a couple of twists: a capital letter, a symbol. "My first Cadillac
was a real lemon so I bought a Toyota" becomes "M1stCwarlsIbaT". You're done
What's Driving Groupon?
John Battelle | Searchblog | 17 December 2010
Groupon was right to turn down $6bn bid from Google. It has a fantastic
franchise: connects small businesses with customers. Better than Yellow
Pages. Growing at 50% a month. Could easily overtake Google
Writing A Strong Lead
John McPhee | WSH | 18 December 2010
Veteran journalist explains how to begin a piece of writing. You have to be
honest and direct. "A lead is a promise. It promises that the piece is going
to be like this. If it is not going to be so, don't use the lead"
Asian Megacities, Free And Unfree
Guy Sorman | City Journal | 18 December 2010
Political systems determine the shape and vitality of Asia's big cities.
Manila is a sprawling slum. Beijing is dead after 8pm, save for a few
streets of nightclubs. Seoul seethes with youth, fashion, freedom
Best Feature Films Of 2010
Roger Ebert | Chicago Sun-Times | 17 December 2010
With all due respect to the general principle that year-end lists are lame,
this is Roger Ebert on film, and he knows of what he speaks. "I Am Love" and
"Inception" place well. "Ghost Writer" creeps in. "Social Network" comes top
A Tiger Every Two Weeks
Manmohan Gupta et al | Tehelka | 18 December 2010
Reporters infiltrate poaching gang operating on borders of China, India,
Nepal. Killing tiger, leopard, otter, fox. Skins and bones sell to mainly
Chinese buyers. "A tiger is killed every two weeks. A leopard is killed
Liu Xiaobo’s Empty Chair
Perry Link | NYR Blog | 13 December 2010
Reflections on presentation of Nobel peace prize to imprisoned Chinese
dissident. Raises East-West tension. "Well-intentioned Westerners have a
long way to go before they really understand China’s politics"
Truth About Israel's Egyptian Agent
Yossi Melman | Haaretz | 17 December 2010
Fine cloak and dagger story about longtime Mossad asset in Egypt, special
adviser to Assad, married to daughter of Nasser. Leaked Egyptian secrets for
decades. Some thought him a double agent. Found murdered in London in 2007
Brushwood And Gall
Edward Carr | Economist | 2 December 2010
Essay on China's place in the world. Introduction to a survey, all of it
worth reading. A rival for the West. "China has been patient, but the day
when it can once again start to impose its will is drawing near"
If cooking is your thing, or you want it to be, this is for you. From
interviews with top chefs to articles that range from the perfect appliance,
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