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BEHIND THE TIMES(FINANCIAL)

December 11, 2008

Well, the Post Office has seemingly picked up some touch of my paper reading lag(or a holiday slowing germ) and now at least twice a week, no pink paper gets half shoved into the mail slot (so much fun to get the occasionally shredded FT Weekend front page). Which puts me even further behind in my reading. So now, here’s some of the things that stood out and/or annoyed me recently.

Cher — well, it’s the fault of the 11/29 11/30 Life and Arts article on the Auto-Tune (or how singers utilize technology invented by Andy Hildebrand a geophysicist (so why don’t the Big Bang nerds tweak Penny’s voice for her?) to fool you into thinking they can sing better than you do in the car) — that the default song in my head is now “Believe.” As one of the primal Loreleis — and like Cher, a born queen of the universe — would say breathlessly, “Thank you ever so.”

Vanessa Friedman, although she never mentions any product I can afford, has been doing interesting writing on price, luxury and value these past two weekends.

Good interview from the Wealth Page’s philanthropy window with David Rockefeller, Jr. It’s nice to see money matched with a sense of responsibility — or even just good common sense. Made me bump up return to Acadia and bike on the carriage trails on the potential vacation list — after Quebec, Seattle and New York City (Isamu Noguchi Museum).

The FT’s seasonal charitable appeal this year supports WaterAid, a very good cause addressing the roots of disease. One of the first articles was a profile of “The Professor” who transformed life in his village in Bangladesh.

The Slow Lane again scores with Harry Eyres’ support of leaving a little mystery in art and not requiring an artist to break down every detail, becoming his or her own critic. Great quote from Edward Hopper (used in a show curated by Gerald Matt). Hopper states: “Most of all the important qualities [of every art] are put there unconsciously and little of importance by the conscious intellect.” Eyres continues thinking through that concept to close his column. I think I now have a FT writing triumvirate + 1. Excellent review also by Eyres of an intriguing book about writers and illustrators.

Horrid Henry, yes or no..Ian Shuttleworth profiled Hull Truck Artistic Director John Godber and the description of Godber’s adaptation of Horrid Henry made me think I should perhaps e-mail the article to the powers that be at DreamWrights; Sarah Hemming’s accompanying review made me reconsider that. Have decided I should just read the original book and see what it’s all about. The Giraffe and the Pelly and Me sounds like fun though, both as a play and a book. But Roald Dahl rarely goes wrong.

Haven’t had a chance to sit down and enjoy the Best Books of 2008. Looking forward to sitting down with that and comparing to the Economist’s list.

Going to have to read the darn French horn book. I first heard about in an Economist review, but Hemming’s review of the stage adaptation has pushed me into the “read the book” camp. Isn’t that what winter’s for?

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