this week i

discharged some of my ballast water, no invasive species.  air asia wanted one hundred dollars for 20kg, one thousand dollars for 40kg.  my luggage was forty.  pictured: the half (by weight) of my luggage with a replacement value well below that extra nine hundred.

flew again.

forgot cambodia was a delightful dump..

..despite occasional opulence.

note the secret to great parenting, perpetually question them: how does this work?


ride downtown two dollars by rickshaw, one dollar by motorcycle.

look at this.

find every issue of the new york review of books better than the last..

(1) nuance the press misses in iraq

these disparate groups are fighting together now, yes, but they won't be together for long.  and they have been fighting in places where local populations are friendly to them.  it will be a different matter when they meet the tough and motivated kurdish peshmerga or shiite forces in the shiites' own regions

(2) gay marriage in court

aids..had willy-nilly outed gays of all social classes and colors; whereas in the 1970s only young white men had, for the most part, dared to come out, now poor gays and rich gays and old gays and ghetto gays were all visible

between 2004 and 2013 the number of americans who would be upset if they had a gay child fell from 60 percent to 40 percent

the second witness..lost steam when he had to admit that his degree..was granted not for his study of marriage or families, but of nineteenth-century cabinetmakers

justice scalia demanded to be told at what precise moment denying marriage to homosexuals had become unconstitutional

(3) what hemingway thought

in these three years, living mostly in paris, he fathered his first child, grew disenchanted with his first wife and took up with his second, quit his first job as a reporter, published his first three collections of stories and poems, wrote his first two novels, saw his first bullfight

who vaguely wants a girl but doesn't want the "intrigues and politics"

in many paragraphs, instead of writing about "i" or "you," he refers to both himself and his friend simply as "a male."  "bring a male up to date"

"writing is the only thing worth a damn," he said in a letter in 1925.  "unless you're a painter then it's painting."

(4) the democratic arts

as she slowly worked her way through the 1,337 words of the declaration of independence with her night students, many of whom had no job or were working two jobs or were stuck in dead-end part-time jobs, allen discovered that the document had meaning for them and that it was accessible to any reader or hearer of its words

a tour de force of close textual analysis

what kind of text is the declaration?  is it a sacred text?  or a treatise?  or perhaps a law?  "in fact, the declaration is just an ordinary memo."  in a brief chapter, entitled "on memos," she explains what she means.  memo, she says, is "short for memorandum, which is latin for 'something that needs to be remembered."

the text "sounds something like a wedding."  but actually, she says, the declaration bears an even closer resemblance to a divorce.

(5) chinese corruption

the only country in the world with a winner of the nobel peace prize in prison

spending more on domestic security than on foreign defense

"by 2012 the richest seventy members of china's national legislature had a net worth of almost ninety billion dollars-more than ten times the combined net worth of the entire us congress" and that "in 2010, high rollers in macau wagered about six hundred billion dollars, roughly the amount of cash withdrawan from all the atms in america in a year."  meanwhile, on a per capita basis, china's income is still "somewhere between turkmenistan's and namibia's"

people who are moving on can be more plainspoken

(6) measuring higher education

the federal government will make $184 billion in profits from student loan debt over the next decade

must a college that wants to compete now have a student union with a food court and plasma screens in every room?

how much do we want teaching and learning to resemble a video game

(7) boom roasted