No change of fashion

In a piece for Vanity Fair, Kurt Andersen argues that for the first time in recent history, American pop culture (fashion, art, music, design, entertainment) hasn’t changed dramatically in the past 20 years.

Not long ago in the newspaper, I came across an archival photograph of Ian Schrager and Steve Rubell with a dozen of their young staff at Morgans, the Ur-boutique hotel, in 1985. It was an epiphany. Schrager’s dress shirt had no collar and some of the hair on his male employees was a bit unfashionably fluffy, but no one in the picture looks obviously, laughably dated by today’s standards. If you passed someone who looked like any of them, you wouldn’t think twice. Yet if, in 1990 or 1980 or 1970, you’d examined a comparable picture from 27 years earlier—from 1963 and 1953 and 1943, respectively—it would be a glimpse back into an unmistakably different world. A man or woman on the street in any year in the 20th century groomed and dressed in the manner of someone from 27 years earlier would look like a time traveler, an actor in costume, a freak. And until recently it didn’t take even that long for datedness to kick in: by the late 1980s, for instance, less than a decade after the previous decade had ended, the 1970s already looked ridiculous.

From Fashion to Housewares, Are We in a Decades-Long Design Rut? | Style | Vanity Fair.

Ye Olde vs Modern English

Ye Olde vs Modern English

Olde samples via Jane Austen

“It is more than I engage for, I assure you.”__________________“Huh-uh.”

“Dare I say my eye might have misjudged the possibility?”________“Really?”

“I see no occasion for that.”_____________________________“Whaaa?”

“That is not an unnatural surmise.”________________________“Maybe.”

“Upon my honour I have not the smallest of objections.”__________“Oh. Okay.”

— Why i dont read the classics

“A Rabbit in Tiger Skin”

May I introduce you to Bobilli Vijay Kumar, the National Sports Editor (yes!) of the TOI, who once described Raj Singh Dungarpur as the ‘uncrowned father of Indian cricket’.

This gentleman had the following to say about the Tiger Woods…er…affair, in a National newspapers blog, and he wasnt joking…

“Tiger Woods is finally realising that life is not always a bed of roses. He has slept in so many, anyway, that he would have known that a prickly one was just a birdie away.

However, even in his wildest dreams (and as we know now he does have wild dreams, even if you don’t count kinky sex or foursomes), he wouldn’t have expected that he would end paying such a heavy price. Will he really need to put away his club to save the marriage?”

If youre still on your chair, read the whole post over at the TOI website – its an absolute riot! I cant quote the whole thing here!

Times of India Sports Blog

The True Miracle in The Andes.

37 years ago in 1972, a passenger plane crashed into the high Andes. Most died, and 15 people survived well over two months in subzero temperatures and no food until they were rescued.

Nando Parrado, a survivor, wrote a book about the ordeal – ‘Miracle in the Andes’, published 2006. Here is an excerpt from an article about the book and the author:

There is a quote from Nando’s book where, after being on the mountain for more than two months, enduring the deaths of 29 friends and family members (including his mother and sister), and upon reaching the summit of a 17,000 foot peak in -30 degree temperatures in jeans and sneakers, expecting to see green valleys below, he only sees more peaks and snow-filled valleys for as far as the eye can see. He writes:

I don’t know how long I stood there, staring. A minute. Maybe two. I stood motionless until I felt a burning pressure in my lungs, and realized I had forgotten to breathe. I cursed God and raged at the mountains. The truth was before me: for all my striving, all my hopes, all my whispered promises to myself and my father, it would end like this. We would all die in these mountains. We would sink beneath the snow, and ancient silence would fall over us, and our loved ones would never know how hard we had struggled to return to them. In that moment, all my dreams, assumptions, and expectations of life evaporated into the thin Andean air. My love for my father swelled in my heart, and I realized that, despite the hopelessness of my situation, the memory of him filled me with joy. It staggered me. The mountains, for all their power, were not stronger than my attachment to my father. They could not crush my ability to love.

I felt a moment of calmness and clarity, and that clarity of mind I discovered a simple, astounding secret: Death has an opposite, but the opposite is not mere living. It is not courage or faith or human will. The opposite of death is love. How had I missed that? How does anyone miss that? Only love can turn mere life into a miracle and draw precious meaning from suffering and fear. For a brief, magical moment, all my fears lifted, and I knew that I would not let death control me. I would walk through the godforsaken country that separated me from my home with love and hope in my heart. I would walk until I had walked all the life out of me, and when I fell, I would die that much closer to my father.

— Some Thoughts About The True Miracle in The Andes..

“Yes Madam Sir”

YES MADAM SIR, the inspiring non-fiction feature film by award-winning Australian filmmaker, Megan Doneman, on the life story of India’s most controversial revolutionary, Kiran Bedi. Narrated by Academy Award© winner Helen Mirren, and filmed over six years, YES MADAM, SIR has been scooping the awards and garnering rave reviews during its run on the worldwide film festival circuit.

  • Winner Audience Award, Best Documentary, Adelaide International Film Festival 2009
  • Winner Best Documentary, Santa Barbara International Film Festival 2009
  • Winner Fund for Social Justice Award, Santa Barbara International Film Festival 2009

YouTube – “Yes Madam, Sir” Official Movie Trailer.

The Story Behind this Photo

natgeoThe November issue of National Geographic magazine features a moving photograph of chimpanzees watching as one of their own is wheeled to her burial. Since it was published, the picture and story have gone viral, turning up on websites and TV shows and in newspapers around the world.

Monica Szczupider, the photographer, recalls:

Her presence, and loss, was palpable, and resonated throughout the group. The management at Sanaga-Yong opted to let Dorothy’s chimpanzee family witness her burial, so that perhaps they would understand, in their own capacity, that Dorothy would not return. Some chimps displayed aggression while others barked in frustration.

But perhaps the most stunning reaction was a recurring, almost tangible silence. If one knows chimpanzees, then one knows that [they] are not [usually] silent creatures.”

via NGM Blog Central – The Story Behind Our Photo of Grieving Chimps – National Geographic Magazine – NGM.com.