Showing posts from April, 2008

50 Best Restaurants

World's 50 best restaurants , as rated by Restaurant magazine, with, quelle surprise, has El Bulli ranked first. There's also a #51-100, which includes Iggy's here in Singapore. No Japanese restaurants, though, as the Economist notes , which seems odd.

Insomnia, the cost of food

A very interesting article in the Guardian puts forward the suggestion that the modern problem is not about not getting enough sleep, but about anxiety about getting enough sleep. It does seem a lot of contemporary issues centre around anxiety about getting things correct: getting enough vitamins and other nutritional aspects of one's diet, for one. Meanwhile, Newsweek explores food inflation and its sources: rising worldwide demand, droughts, rising energy costs, and speculation. Odd not to mention the diversion of cropland for biofuels, the impact of which people have varying opinions.

Books by friends

At a 30th birthday party last night, I was reflecting how many of my friends from college had had books published in recent month, and wondering what I'd done with my life. Oh well, "30 is the new 20", as someone chirpily said. But ennui over the passage of time and remembrance of things past aside, I should give props to those friends who had books published: V.V. Ganeshananthan (V.V.? I will always know her as Sugi) - Love Marriage Garrett Graff - The First Campaign: Globalization, the Web and the Race for the White House (with a glowing review from no less than Michiko Kakutani ) Jennifer 8. Lee - The Fortune Cookie Chronicles Fiction, politics, and food-as-cultural-anthropology - a nice diverse group. Met up with Sugi recently and showed her the wonders of Singapore hawker food. Congrats to all of them - lots of good reviews popping up.

Back from the Philippines

Back from Manila, where I caught the opening of the Little League Philippine Series with fellow Sox fanatic George. Great to see all the kids having fun playing baseball. Also met a Bill Bennett - hope I got the name right - who was an instructor for MLB, and proceeded to talk about Wally Moon and baseball at the L.A. Coliseum. Man, hadn't realised how starved I was for baseball talk. Anyway, the article by John Tierney on M. Keith Chen's challenges to cognitive dissonance research - saying in effect that a lot of the research's conclusions could suffer from the Monty Hall Problem - is a fascinating use of probability theory in an unexpected context. ( Link to Chen's original paper.) The Monty Hall Problem is such a counter-intuitive one.

The Thrilla in Manila

Am in Manila for the next few days for work, and the moment I checked in I went out foraging for Jollibee fried chicken. And boy it was even better than I remembered. The mall had Jollibee and Krispy Kremes... my arteries aren't gonna like it, but my taste buds are ecstatic.