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Recommended reading / viewing / listening

February 12, 2012

Most of these great items come from my Twitter feed or Facebook news feed. Follow me on Twitter and on Facebook for more fascinating videos, articles, essays and criticism.

1. In Afghanistan, a Soviet Past Lies in Ruins
By Graham Bowley | The New York Times | Feb. 11
“As poignant in its imperial ambition as in its otherworldliness, the Soviet-era swimming pool atop Swimming Pool Hill here is as good a symbol as any of the doubtful legacy of empires. “

2. 10 Far-out Valentine’s Gifts
Oddee | Feb. 9
“Valentine’s Day is coming and you still have no idea what to buy for your beloved one? We have compiled a list of 10 of the best strangest, weirdest and most unusual valentine’s gifts you can actually buy.”

3. 20 Reasons Your Flight Attendant Might Not Be Happy-Go-Lucky
Rants of a Sassy Stew | Feb. 10
“If your flight attendant isn’t chipper and licking your ass throughout the flight, there is probably a very good reason behind it.”

4. The Istanbul Art-Boom Bubble
By Suzy Hansen | The New York Times Magazine | Feb. 10
“It appears that Istanbul … is having its moment of rebirth. These newly wealthy corners of the East seem full of possibilities, but what kind of culture will the Turks create?”

5. Faces beyond the numbers of long-term unemployed
By Sharon Cohen | Associated Press | Feb. 11
“The frustrations of one 53-year-old North Carolina man are multiplied millions of times over across time zones and generations in a country still gripped by economic anxiety, despite increasing signs of recovery.”

6. Whitney Houston, superstar of records, films, dies
By Nekesa Mumbi Moody | Associated Press | Feb. 11
“She wowed audiences with effortless, powerful, and peerless vocals that were rooted in the black church but made palatable to the masses with a pop sheen.”

7. How war stories inspire children to learn
BBC News | Feb. 11
“Many fictional tales of loyalty and survival – often based on true wartime events – have also helped children to understand what happened.”

8. The case for global currency
By David Wolman | Salon | Feb. 11
“Would it make more sense to have one currency for the entire world?”

9. Rereading: Camera Lucida by Roland Barthes
By Briam Dillon | The Guardian | March 26
“Grieving for his mother, Roland Barthes looked for her in old photos – and wrote a curious, moving book that became one of the most influential studies of photography”

10. The siege of Leningrad
Witness :: BBC News | January 28
“When Leningrad was cut off from the rest of Russia by German troops during World War Two, one third of its population died.”

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TUNES

Tonight I’m spending some time with the blues, specifically with the Texas Blues Café. Check out the line-up and then listen here.

1. Walter Trout — Blues Deluxe
2. Paul Thorn — Starvin For Your Kisses
3. Whiskey Myers — Thief Of Hearts
4. 8 Ball Down — Walk Down Blues
5. Z Tribe — LiL Hurricane
6. Robbie King Band — Wanting You
7. Brooks & Dunn — Caroline
8. John Fogerty — Swamp River Days
9. George Thorogood — You Talk To Much
10. Grace Potter — Sugar
11. 2 Slim and the Tail Draggers — Mother Load
12. Bo Cox — Gone
13. Van Wilks — Long Way To Crawl

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