Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Staying tuned

Three years since I put up something here!

I was looking at my blog 'logo' and was wondering if I needed to change it, given that I don't live in the US anymore. For now, I've decided to keep it, since I get accused of being American on so many occasions. Yes, 'accused' is the right term, often arising when I'm being contrarian. Why I can't be contrarian and Ethiopian, I don't know.

Besides there are some habits I've not yet given up. Such as going back to the US more frequently than my bank account likes, for starters ... though admittedly, that's been as much due to functional requirements as desire.

Other notable habits I've kept, or picked up, which are very American-inspired are:

New episodes of This American Life continue to account for weekly mini-delights of my week. Even though I discovered TAL in the 2000s, sometimes I dig old episodes when the occasion presents (frequently?). E.g. this early episode about horror vacations, featuring an American family in Ethiopia in the 60s or 70s. So bizarre. So funny. Chinese father, German mother, and typical American kids ... attempting vacation in war zone Ethiopia. And to top it all, they wanted to travel by bus. Good grief.

Another episode of regional interest was This Call May Be Recorded... To Save Your Life, on Eritrean refugees held hostage in Sinai desert. Insert Somalian or Ethiopian for Eritrean, and that story would be true for the region. As much as I enjoyed the episode, I never quite figured out how it got to feature on TAL (it doesn't involve Americans or the US). But thanks anyway, TAL.

Finally there was also the story of a Somali refugee in Kenya, trying to get through to the US, Abdi and the Golden Ticket.

Serial: TAL's little sister, and awesome. How could I resist?  Hooked on it via a girl who told me about it after our mutual love for TAL confessions. In return, I got an Ozzie friend who's never even been to the US but is a fan of TAL hooked on Serial.  A week later I got a distraught message from her, "This world is not fair! I cried all the way to work listening to Serial. I'm sad!" That'd would be Adnan's story, Season 1.

Modern Love, NYT : about 80-90% of articles are good weekend candy ...

Social Q's, NYT: If it wasn't for the person who answers them, these would be boring. But Philip Galanes makes this column hilarious.

I've a few other habits in tow, but  will have to think about why they'd be worth typing out ... 

Update: I also found this artist, Kelela ... 

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