Monday, April 9, 2012

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Of Cardinals and Crosses

Keith O'Brien, leader of the Roman Catholic church in Scotland, has called for British Christians to wear a cross 'every day if their lives' (find the whole article here on the BBC). He claims he is worried about the increasing 'marginalisation' of religion. Bref, I suggest you read the article.

Here's what's wrong with that: wearing a cross isn't going to bring religion back to the forefront of day-to-day life. Furthermore, Christians still represent the majority of believers in the UK, but practising Christians have dwindled. In the modern age, faith should consist of the upholding of a set of ideals, not a brash display of piety. What have we got to prove anymore? The absence of a cross doesn't mean any less access to Elysium. 

Thank you,

Commenting on news sites

... So I made myself a BBC iD, and the website isn't particularly well-managed. They don't tell you what having an iD entails, comments close at indefinite times and often comments are disabled for stories! Not a happy bunny!

Thursday, April 5, 2012


KONY 2012: Part II - Beyond Famous

May I point out that the mere fact that commenting has been disabled on this video is a contravention of the principle of grass-roots social media upon which this campaign is founded.

The Day in Pictures on BBC

AWOLNATION - "Sail" Red Bull Records

Just a little tune I found and felt like sharing

An Unfounded Attack

I don't know whether any of you read Jane Aldridge's blog Sea of Shoes. I do. When I first got into blogging, she was the first thing I read. I liked how different she was, how her pictures were refreshing and appealing.

She has just today posted something as a response to an article published on NY Mag, drawn from Texas Monthly* (find her post here and the article here), claiming that the editorial is 'the tallest tale ever told'.

I read both. I read the comments on NY Mag, and I have mixed views on this. Firstly, I think that the article presents a caricature, it's extreme, and reduces Ms Aldridge to nothing more than a stereotype: the 20 year-old social butterfly who can't deal with bad light for her photoshoot, and, furthermore, dismisses college as being useless. Frankly, it's unprofessional journalism, being nothing more than a particularly aggressive and forceful piece of gossip.

Whilst the blog itself presents a very limited insight into Jane's personality, I would agree that it does not help in contradicting the impressions evoked by the article. Ms Aldridge has been blogging since she was fifteen, and has enjoyed the privilege of being surrounded by extremely luxurious apparel from a young age. This is conducive to the impression that nothing else interests her, but I doubt that is the case. One must always remember that bloggers post content in relation to their blogs. In Ms Aldridge's case, this is quite patently her personal outlook on fashion. She is unlikely to post about a current global issue, for example. High-profile bloggers often have an almost sacrosanct sense of corporate image for their posts, which they are often unwilling to disturb (which is perfectly understandable). 

As for the dismissal of college, I think her argument is perfectly logical: she has a successful business, doing something that she enjoys. College, although considered an important final stage in one's personal cultivation, is more importantly recognised as a conventional springboard for getting a job. As she is already involved in a business which she enjoys, then why, as she says, get into debt over it?

Whilst we're on the subject of dismissal, I fail to understand the shock at her dislike of fashion shows. The latter are merely a perennial display of creativity, that get magazines buzzing six months in advance of the weather that permits the wearing of the clothes paraded. Their absence in Sea of Shoes is infinitely refreshing.

Simultaneously, I find it a shame that Mrs Aldridge has only cultivated one aspect of her daughter's personality. Although fashion and personal style are quite obviously something that the two bond over, theirs is a family that clearly have the means to ensure that both of their daughters have a fully-rounded education, so to speak.

However, we must not entirely discredit the mother - she has obviously brought her daughter up to wilfully express her tastes, which are, incidentally, insightful and original, and, to use my favourite word, kooky.

To conclude, Jason Sheeler (Texas Monthly) wants to present her as how we might expect her: a filthy-rich Dallas shopaholic, and latches on to her lack of desire to attend college as a sign of her character. I say, if she is contented with her current business, doing something she enjoys, then leave her be. In the meantime Jane, good luck pursuing what is an excellent blog.

*The NY Mag article is written by Charlotte Cowles, interspersed with extracts from Jason Sheeler in Texas Monthly

Thank you,

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Mes Adresses St-Honore

Rue St-Honore makes for a great walk. If you plan on popping into a shop or two, however, be sure to dress the part (trust me, the doormen stare down any scruffy 'potential' customers until they get scared off).

DØ CONTROL an experiment with The Do*

This is pretty cool.

Dine Divine: London

Today, I thought I'd share my three favourite London restaurants:

The Banana Tree is a chain of restaurants specialising in South East Asian cuisine, and it's incredible. I went to the West Hampstead branch, and had tofu followed by cashew duck. Amongst the most memorable meals of my life. Find it here (you can even download the menu!). Great for a straightforward dinner out.

Bincho is a Japanese restaurant that specialises in yakitori, or grilled meat (so no sushi). I went for a friend's birthday, and had soft-shell crab, grilled salmon, eel, squid sashimi salad, saki and I loved it! You order a minimum of two of each thing you want, and just keep ordering. The service is really fast and it makes for a very diverse and filling meal. Reasonably priced but it builds up.

Galvin La Chapelle & Galvin Cafe a Vin are both based in Spitalfields, next door to each other. I went to the latter, and they provided us with an amazing welcome drink, made with some sort of apple spritzer, prosecco and a piece of bitter orange rind. I had lamb and white bean soup, both delectable. Perfect for a sophisticated lunch, but pricey. La Chapelle is a slightly more high-calibre restaurant. Oh, and they have a Michelin star!

{Cafe a Vin}

{La Chapelle}

And the funny thing? All the waiters in London, no matter the place, are foreigners!