For months, I've been excited to try food from the Fojol Bros. of Merlindia, a roaming band of "brothers" in a converted 1965 bread truck who sport bright jumpsuits, turbans and fake mustaches while serving up tasty Indian cuisine in 100 percent biodegradable/compostable packaging.
When they tweeted that they'd be setting up shop near my office during lunching hours, I saw it as my best chance to try them.
But while we were waiting in line for the food, a city cop shut them down for operating in a square. As MLM pointed out: a square shut down the square. (VIDEO: Click here if video not embedded at the top of this post.)
July 31, 2009
July 29, 2009
It's never been easier to get your pray on.
If you have a message for god, all you have to do is send it via Twitter to an Israeli named Alon Nir.
Nir promises to print out each tweet and bring them to Jerusalem's Western Wall, where it is customary to place a prayer in the cracks of the aging wall. This practice presumes god won't mind the added paper supplies needed to meet this new demand.
(If god is everywhere, doesn't that include the Internet?)
I thought this was an interesting development in prayer-based messaging offerings, but Nir Hasson writes in Ha'aretz that "through other services, it is already possible to send notes via fax, email and text messages to the Western Wall."
Evidently, I could have been texting my prayers to the Western Wall this whole time.
What have we learned? Twitter is another Internet prayer communications tool, but not the only one.
Happy Rain Day, everyone.
You remember, Rain Day, right? It's been a tradition in Green County, Pa., since 1876.
I'll remind you: last year was a sunny and beautiful Rain Day.
I'm not attending the festivities this year, but the AP is reporting that it has indeed rained today.
July 27, 2009
FARMINGTON, N.M. — I laughed when I first learned that my arrival in town coincided with the National High School Finals Rodeo. When I saw high schoolers hanging out at my hotel practicing their lassoing, I became intrigued. By the end of the day, it was clear that it was an event I needed to attend.
Click here to experience my visit to the rodeo.
July 24, 2009
RIO ARRIBA COUNTY, N.M. — I know what fried chicken is. And I know what chicken fried steak is.
Today I learned the difference between fried chicken and chicken fried chicken (the latter has no bones).
I probably would have known this sooner if I liked either of those foods.
Meanwhile, this is what it looks like if a restaurant's patrons customarily sign $1 bills and staple them to the ceiling:
July 23, 2009
SAN JUAN COUNTY, N.M. — To me, Fajada Butte (above) looks a lot like Devil's Tower. Except that it has layers that include fossils from clams, ammonites, snails and shark teeth. Earth is amazing.
There was a thriving community in Chaco Canyon around 900 AD. And there is evidence that the Chacoans drank chocolate from cacao.
See, that's an odd discovery since cacoa is grown only in Mesoamerica. This was over a thousand years ago, and the Chacoans didn't have horses. Did they conduct trade by walking to what is now Guatemala and southern Mexico? No one knows. (I love learning about things no one knows.)
July 22, 2009
I was the only human for as far as the eye could see, leading me to talk to myself a bit.
As you can see from the pictures below, I did encounter a petroglyph or two.
July 21, 2009
The crest of the Sandia Mountains is 30,000 feet above the dropped valley floor, meaning that the Sandias are, in a way, taller than Mt. Everest.
Click here for video. (I turned off the camera when it got windy and rainy. And shaky.)
July 14, 2009
The Washington Nationals suck. But on July 26 and Aug. 7, fans can bring a losing D.C. Lottery ticket to the ballpark and redeem it for a ticket to that day's game.1
It really seems like the team missed an opportunity here to have Rosie Perez do some ads in which she recites her line from White Men Can't Jump: "Sometimes when you lose, you really win."
1It must be a D.C. Scratchers lottery ticket with a value of at least $2.
July 13, 2009
Delta has unveiled new "sexy" uniforms for its flight attendants — but only for those women who have the right body type.
The airline is not offering the stylish red dress, created by fashion designer Richard Tyler, to women larger than a size 18.1
But aside from the question about whether Delta ought to offer the new "sexy" uniform to larger women, Melissa G. posed a good question to me earlier today:
"What do we female passengers get out of this? Are the male flight attendants getting a makeover too?"Melissa is right to point out that airplanes are filled with people who are not straight men. Here is her answer: "Designs for Delta’s male employees include blazers, pocket squares, French Cuff dress shirts, and a reversible all-weather coat."
1Remember, the numbers in women's clothing, which don't correspond to any actual measurement, are stupid. It is women's clothing, after all, that finds it sensible to have a size double 0.
July 10, 2009
When Barack Obama came to visit him today in Vatican City, Pope Benedict gave the president a booklet explaining Vatican opposition to abortion and embryonic stem cell research.
The pope gave the president a booklet?
According to US News & World Report, Obama replied, "I'll have something to read on the plane."
I wonder if the pope knows that Air Force One has DirecTV.
July 08, 2009
Last month, I shared the surprising (to me) news that the Huffington Post has 61 full-time paid staffers.
Today, I learned that Talking Points Memo plans to add eight new editorial positions and open a bureau here in Washington, D.C.
The site currently employs 13 people, so I don't want to imply that there are thousands of new journalism jobs being created.
Edit: But given how many traditional newspapers have pared down or shuttered their D.C. bureaus entirely, it is encouraging to see new positions sprouting up.
July 06, 2009
Here's the above-the-fold view of today's Washington Times. As you can see, the top story isn't simply that Sarah Palin attacked her critics — it's that she did it via Twitter.
The newspaper editors evidently thought enough of the medium to put it in the headline.
If Palin had issued a press statement or made a radio/TV appearance, would it have appeared in the headline?
July 05, 2009
Given the sorry state of the economy, it's no wonder that voters have shifted their priorities.
The number saying moral values is the most important issue in a presidential election fell from 27 percent in November 2004 to 10 percent in April 2009. The number who said Iraq/Afghanistan dropped from 22 percent to 4 percent.
July 03, 2009
Last year, I documented my many problems trying to buy Washington Nationals tickets from their downtown store.
Well, they've closed that store.
But it's a new season, so I have some new complaints pertaining to the NAT$ BUCK$ system:
- Not all vendors accept NAT$ BUCK$. For instance, they cannot be used at Dip 'n Dots. Or many of the beer kiosks.
- The cashiers hand the used NAT$ BUCK$ back to you after a purchase and mix them together, meaning you don't know which ones have money left and which ones are used up.
- Prior to a purchase, the cashiers cannot tell you how much money is left on your cards. You have to commit to the purchase first.
Finally, a complaint about the Gray's Grill food stand, which sells a "crab cake platter" (a crab cake plus french fries) for $12.50. They do not offer a crab cake by itself. In fact, if they run out of fries even while still having a crab cake available — as was the case when I tried to buy one — the policy is to throw the superfluous crab cake in the trash can rather than selling it.