Saturday, October 31, 2009

This Is It

From Tolstoy to MJ's This Is It. I saw the movie in the new 360 mall Imax movie theater. I absolutely loved it. It is as if you were attending the concert. The movie  is a collection of scenes of his practice for the This Is It concert put together in a way that comes very close to actually witnessing the concert. It lasts for an hour forty five minutes and it will blow you off your seat!

I could not help feeling sad for his abrupt passing away. The mess he got himself into during his life eclipsed his art, but after passing away you appreciate the genius artist in him. The concert would have been something, but at least we were left with a flavor of it and a memory of a great artist.

Friday, October 23, 2009

War and Peace Journey in Awan

I meant to document my reading of War and Peace in a more elaborate way than I did here in the blog. So I put my thoughts together and I sent them over to Dr. Rumaihi the editor in chief of Awan newspaper. He pleasantly surprised me by publishing my writing. I would like to share my journey with you. My apologies to non Arabic readers as I will try to translate to English at some point.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Flu Rumors

As soon as swine flu vaccinations start next month, some people getting them will drop dead of heart attacks or strokes, some children will have seizures and some pregnant women will miscarry.

But those events will not necessarily have anything to do with the vaccine. That poses a public relations challenge for federal officials, who remember how sensational reports of deaths and illnesses derailed the large-scale flu vaccine drive of 1976.

Don’t Blame Flu Shots for All Ills, Officials Say - NYTimes.com

As if the swine flu scare we are bombarded with in the media everyday is not enough, expect more when the vaccine arrives. I am not sure what is worse getting the flu or living in fear of it!

Saturday, October 10, 2009

French Politics 2

The Hôtel Lambert, in a corner of the Île Saint-Louis overlooking the Seine, was once one of Paris’s best-kept secrets. But when a high-rolling Qatari prince bought the crumbling 17th-century palace in 2007 for $88 million, the Lambert became the center of attention, not all of it so attractive.

Paris Journal - A Palace Overhaul, Treading on French Heritage - NYTimes.com

I wonder why the French did not object to the previous owners who seem to have done most of the damage to the palace? And if the palace is part of the the French heritage why is it not under the state ownership rather than private ownership? Just wondering.

Thursday, October 08, 2009

French Politics

France's Culture Minister Frederic Mitterrand is facing intense pressure over a book he wrote that described paying for "young boys" in Thailand.

The book was written four years ago, before he joined the government, but is back in the headlines following his impassioned support for Roman Polanski.

BBC NEWS | Europe | French minister in 'boy sex' row

Interesting that no one performed a background check on him before joining the government. Either that or anything goes in French politics!