Tuesday, May 03, 2011

Recommended Posts, January-March 2010

Time for another roundup of highlights from just over one year ago...

Guided Tour - recommended posts from the 1st quarter of 2010

1)  A New Year's bon mot double whammy  -  4th January 2010
Two of my own penséés, musing on youth and age, and my uncomfortably growing awareness of the chasm between them.

The dismal opening fortnight promotion at doomed 'nightclub' Le Zazou (it folded in under a year) prompted some reflections from me on how to do cheap/free drinks offers properly (a topic I returned to later in the year).

A discussion about an outrageous pun on this song title (perpetrated by Thomas Pynchon in Gravity's Rainbow) provoked me to root out some clips of the inimitable chanteuse Sophie Tucker.

4)  Carnival time again...  -  30th January 2010
I am particularly sorry to miss the Krewe du Vieux carnival parade in New Orleans on this day because this year's King of the Parade is... the incomparable Dr John! I reminisce about having once seen him play in London, and post a clip of his classic party tune Iko Iko.

5)  Top Five Parties I Have Thrown  -  10th February 2010
I was very disappointed with my latest housewarming party; but I reflect that I have pulled off more than a few roaring successes in the past.

6)  Varieties of bad guest behaviour  -  18th February 2010
I itemise the lapses of courtesy or common sense which so vexed me at my recent flat-warming party, and which led me to swear off ever having a party at home again.

7)  Behind the motorbike (A loo story)  -  20th February 2010
A favourite anecdote from my early days in Beijing.  (More loo stories here and here.)

8)  Twitter ye not  -  1st March 2010
A little diatribe against the modern-day curse of 'social networking', and in particular against the utter pointlessness of newest fad, FourSquare.

9)  L’enfer – c’est les français  -  5th March 2010
Mostly, I like the French; but god, they can be a noisy bunch!

A bumper post for St Patrick's Day: embedded videos of three versions of this great song - by Mary Hopkin (I think, the first 'pop song' I ever heard), Liam Clancy, and the Leningrad Cowboys - and more than thirty other links.

11)  Trouble at The Drugstore  -  20th March 2010
Upscale new cocktail bar Apothecary - after a rather promising soft opening phase at the end of the preceding year - starts creating all sorts of problems for itself.

12)  Ask THE COIN  -  29th March 2010
I have a new method for deciding what to do with my life; others are welcome to share it. (More on the ritual of THE COIN here.)

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