a blog with cultural bulimia.

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Dooce on 'The Dog Whisperer' (I love the show too):
I can’t explain my fascination with this show, only that it is ridiculously satisfying to watch people realize for the first time that ohmigod, you mean the Chihuahua that lives in my house is a dog? And that he isn’t going to one day stand up on his hind legs and tell me in English why he likes to bite anyone who knocks on the door? Because I was confused that he hadn’t done that yet.

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Randall Island.

Going home (under the train tracks).


Our DJ Paul and Saul have just returned from Rio and they are really excited. Another two converts - like we needed any more preachers...

Sunday, May 28, 2006

Bingham Cup 2006.

Pictured above: NYC's Gotham Knights. More pictures here.

It was a great way to spend the last two afternoons: my first time in Randall Island. The weather was hot and so were the men. I called us groupies but was informed by Eddie that you need to have had sex with one of the players to be considered a groupie. Last I saw him, he was still trying.

It was also the first time I watched an entire rugby match and made up my mind about joining a team: against it. Like someone said (Eddie, again), it's probably OK on your body only if you are 25. Further disencouragement came from my (brazilian) friend F. who told me how he had a stroke after getting hit in the head during a training session, a couple of years ago. He is fine now but, still...

Unfortunately, the event is over: everybody is going back home. Sidney won. I sort of was rooting for Manchester. Their #13 was H.O.T. Allow us to be superficial...

Saturday, May 27, 2006

Afternoon in Midtown Manhattan.

Fifth Ave. & 60th Street: "Corner Plot is a new public art piece that challenges the public's perceptions of personal space."

'The Cube' from inside, after the rain: you probably have already seen EVERY single angle of this place - nothing left for one to be original here...

MoMA, inside and out.

I had not been to the new building yet - I think charging $20 for admission is absurd and elitist - thank god for Target who sponsors free Fridays.

6th Ave. & 54th St.: the dark side of Midtown.

Friday, May 26, 2006

This long & gay weekend.

As his friend Vern said "We are just a Gay Native American convention shy of having a ton of "Village People" running around the city."

And Eric asks the question I've been meaning to ask: "Why are all the sailors so ugly? (...) Don't they have gyms on those ships?"

Anyway, allow us to be superficial...

Thank G it's a long weekend.

Going on in New York City this weekend:

Fleet Week, "bringing thousands of horny, muscled sailors",

Bingham Cup, "bringing 1,000 jocky, beefy gay rugby players to town",

New York City Hoedown, "which will bring a hotel full of sequined, line-dancing gay cowboys".

AND, last but not least, DJ Gustavo's birthday, being celebrated in ALL THE RIGHT PLACES:
It's my Birthday weekend, (my Birthday is May 27)
Here is my schedule so you can stop by and give me a hug:

Thursday - Brut @ EasternBloc (505 E 6 St.)
Friday - Snaxx @ The Westside Tavern (360 W 23 ST. @ 9 Ave.)
Saturday - Cruising @ Siberia (356 W 40 St. @ 9 Ave.)
Sunday - BeerBlast @ The Eagle (554 W 28 St. @ 11 Ave.)

The sad side of globalization.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Officer's Row.
(Brooklyn Navy Yard buildings)

America Voting.

More than 63 million votes were cast, "more than any president in the history of our country has received," Ryan Seacrest said yesterday about the American Idol Final.

Supreme Chancellor Palpatine.

I love dooce:
We had struggled with what we were going to teach her to call her parts, and before you freak out and call the police because we’re encouraging our child to nickname her vagina, don’t I know that now that I’ve allowed such aberrant behavior she’s going to grow up and nickname the severed limbs in her deep freezer, let me assure you that we’ve gone ahead and taught her the correct anatomical designations as well. It’s not like we’re calling it her Wallace or her Supreme Chancellor Palpatine.

We decided on bunky because it was cute, and there was no possibility of it being confused with any other inanimate object. I mentioned here once that we were considering bunky, and I got a frantic email from one of my readers begging me not to choose bunky, please, don’t do it, Bunky was her mother’s name. WHAT ARE THE CHANCES OF THAT? And why did she have to tell me because now when I hear it all I can think of is an imaginary silver-haired woman wearing a floral apron and garden clogs, not that her mother was that sort of domestic type, I don’t know, I’ll never know, she could be a ball-breaking attorney who wears Jimmy Choos, Ball-Breaker Bunky, but that image lodged itself into my brain and now whenever I talk to Leta about my bunky I can’t help but envision a vagina preparing a pot roast and then sewing the button back on a festive Christmas sweater.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006


On 7th Av and 33rd Street at 11:30 AM on 5/24.

1969 Cadillac Eldorado.

See the Truth


"Make a difference when you pledge to SEE THE TRUTH on opening weekend in your city. Your pledge will send a message to the world that global warming is a genuine threat to our planet."

Tuesday, May 23, 2006


Back in the bus.

Lots of people want to ride with you in the limo, but what you want is someone who will take the bus with you when the limo breaks down.

Some reasons why it was an innocent mistake.

He is talking about the gay blind mountain climber incident:

"Ever since last December, every time the word “mountain” is used, it is immediately and unabashedly done so in context of gay sex. Actually, Ang Lee and his gang forever ruined the word as one free of sexual meaning. Like these: plug, beads, bear, Twinkie, rim, fag, and, uh, gay. Cynthia simply couldn't wrap her brain around the word being associated with something wholesome." PEN15 Club [via tr]

Why are Brazil so good? Playing soccer, there is.

"Having an entire nation obsessed with football and, by extension, winning the World Cup, has developed a degree of self-fulfilment.

For some children, sport is the only way out of poverty in Brazil
Brazil is a big country - 183m people - and that is a lot of potential footballers, especially when, as Parreira says, "the whole of Brazil" is playing the game.

But for some in Brazil football is more than just a game.

It is, says journalist Lito Cavalcanti, a "life solution".

Many of Brazil's greatest footballers grew up in favelas - the shanty towns in its sprawling cities. Here, life is hard, and football offers an escape from the crippling poverty.

"It's the only way out of misery," says Cavalcanti. "The lower classes have no effective schooling. They live in favelas where drug dealers control their lives. Sport is the only way out, and in Brazil football is the only sport people care about.

"What makes them so good? Necessity. It's the only life they have ahead of them. That is their drive."

BBC SPORT | Football | World Cup 2006 | Teams | Brazil | Why are Brazil so good?

Sunday, May 21, 2006


Some pictures from yesterday's walk from Williamsburg to Dumbo.

Remove these words from your vocabulary.

This was suggested as business etiquette but I believe we all would benefit from trying to apply it to all our social relations.
ie. “I just think this design is what you should do.”
The problem as I’ve seen it with just is that it provides no factual or substantiated weight to your point. Rather, it makes your statement less important, as if there is no certain thought behind your statement at all. Most often we use the word in conjunction with the word think, which can be the most damaging from the client’s point of view.

ie. “I honestly don’t know how that pixel got moved.”
I love the word honest. Honestly I do! In fact, I used to use it all the time, but what I have found is that when most people hear the word honest, they immediately think dishonest or lying. I think many clients also associate the word with sales, and the last thing a client wants to do is buy from a salesman, they want to by from a friend. This word also comes in the synonyms of frankly, truly, and the truth is.

ie. “Its as simple as moving the database from the legacy system to MySQL.”
The great thing about the word simple is that it almost always can predict that the future of your statement will be anything but. To say something is simple, implies that it is too small for the client to worry about, but what really ends up happening is that it is usually this item that the client will fixate on because you have tried to downplay it. This word also comes in the synonyms of easy, no problem,and likity split. Yes, I’ve really heard a colleague say that last synonym before!

ie. “Actually, the real objective is to design a new way for people to use toilet paper”
The word actually is always used to debunk a statement that has been already made. There is no way to use the word that would not force the listener to become on guard. If you use this word with a client then you are putting them down and trying to prove that you are right and they are wrong. Debate is fine and healthy in a client relationship but in this manner, and with this word in particular, you can do more harm than good.

Saturday, May 20, 2006

Egg in Williamsburg.

At Egg, a sliver of an operation in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, somebody loves breakfast. That is clear, and it's just as clear that it's an outside job. New Yorkers don't love breakfast. They barely tolerate it, except when it's called brunch. Then they stand in the rain for an hour waiting to eat somebody's poor excuse for eggs Benedict. But breakfast? That's what you drink on the subway, or buy from a cart on the way to the office. New York Times

Egg, 135 North Fifth Street, Williamsburg, Brooklyn, (718) 302-5151. Breakfast, 7 a.m. to noon Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to noon Saturday and Sunday.
My first time in Williamsburg: Randy suggested we had breakfast there and explored it. We ended up walking the waterfront, along the Navy Yard, all the way to Dumbo. From there we took the water-taxi to Chelsea and ended our trip at Aperture - a fullfilling afternoon, as he said.

Friday, May 19, 2006

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Watching my back.

First reviews are out:

"Is Christianity a conspiracy? Is "The Da Vinci Code" a dangerous, anti-Christian hoax? What's up with Tom Hanks's hair?

Luckily, I lack the learning to address the first two questions. As for the third, well, it's long, and so is the movie."

Brazil is a war zone.

"As prison riots spread onto the streets of Rio and São Paulo, a picture is emerging of a nation at war with itself." Guardian

UPDATE: "5 Days of Violence by Gangs in São Paulo Leaves 115 Dead Before Subsiding".

Monday, May 15, 2006

The wrong Guy.

The funniest thing I have seen in a while: Guy Kewney, an IT pundit was waiting (in the wrong place) to be interviewed live by BBC but when his name was called, Guy Goma, who was waiting for a job interview mistakenly answered and was rushed in front of the TV. His face, when he realizes - on air - the mix up, is priceless:

The first question, about the verdict in favor of Apple:
"Were you surprised by this verdict today?"

And the surprise answer:
"I'm very surprised to see the verdict come on me because I was not expecting that. When I came, they told me something else."
The network has apologized to its viewers for a studio mix up that resulted in a man mistakenly appearing on live television as Guy Kewney -- an expert on Internet music downloads. In fact the man was Guy Goma, a Congolese man applying for a technology-related job with the British Broadcasting Corp. Goma followed an employee to the studio after a mistake at a reception desk". CNN

Friday, May 12, 2006

'The Future? What's That?'

"Perhaps you read yesterday's article about members of the Nukak tribe — nearly 80 of them — who walked out of the Colombian jungle and renounced their ancestral ways. Until then, they'd had virtually no contact with modern civilization. What they expect from the future, which seems to be a problematic concept for them, is almost as unclear as what led them to leave Nukak National Park for the outpost of San José del Guaviare. That village is hardly an apotheosis of modernity, but it is nonetheless a threshold from which there is no going back. Attempts to describe how the Nukak feel about this transition have been rudimentary. According to witnesses, they say they are happy about it.

None of which explain the bittersweet feel this story leaves in the reader's mind. We have no clearer idea what it would mean to live a subsistence life in the Colombian jungle than the Nukak have of living even on the fringes of the modern world. In one sense, there has never been a better time for a people like the Nukak to leave the wild. They'll find medical care, sustenance and a genuine attempt at cultural respect that would have been impossible years ago. Yet the fact that they're leaving suggests how much their world — and ours — has been impaired.

The Nukak have every right to make this decision for themselves. But it's hard to escape the feeling that their self-sustaining existence — which went almost entirely unnoticed by the rest of the world — was holding something open for us, something that has now been lost."

NYTimes Op-Ed

Friday, May 05, 2006

Muy amigo: Lula getting screwed by Evo Morales.

Image from today's front page of Jornal O Globo.

"The crisis has been particularly damaging to Brazil's president, President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, who has been harshly criticized at home as having failed to look after his country's interests.

Critics say Mr. da Silva, who is expected to run for re-election this year, has surrendered political space to Venezuela's president, Hugo Chávez, who joined the meeting at this Argentine resort town as Bolivia's most strident backer.

"The Brazilian press has been very critical about Lula the last three days," said Timothy Powers, an expert on Brazil at Oxford University, "that Lula has been playing footsie with Chávez and Evo, and that when it comes to national interests like gas, Lula is very naïve in getting himself into this position. Lula looks weak, like he's a prisoner of events."" New York Times