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Archive for the ‘international’ Category

Still unsure how I feel about Google Buzz. I’m a bit creeped out by the sudden inclusion of all my Gmail contacts suddenly being privy to my Tweets and Google Reader shares. Another part of me also wishes that more people would participate. Some friends have told me that Buzz is my crack, that I’m the only person they ever see post anything. In my defense, it’s part of my job to surf the intraweb for cool things and I really, really like sharing information…one of the reasons why I love journalism.

For all Google Buzz’s potential pitfalls, I was happy to sign on this morning and see two Buzz posts that made me smile. The first from my friend, Chelsea, who posted a Foreign Policy slideshow (this magazine is quickly becoming one of my favorites and consistently features incredible photography) on “A Dog’s Life in China.”

This was one of my favorites:

I spent last January in China with an Economics class, studying the cultural, environmental and socioeconomic changes associated with the country’s rapid growth. At one dam visit, I noticed a group of older men sitting together on some benches, with bird cages hanging in the trees around them. One of our guides told me that this was so the birds could sing together.

My roommate, Maren, posted this excerpt from Eve Ensler’s latest work “I am an emotional creature.” I heard Eve perform this on the show where I interned in the fall, On Point, and it gave me the chills. Good to see it in print form:

I love being a girl.
I can feel what you’re feeling
as you’re feeling it inside
the feeling
before.
I am an emotional creature.
Things do not come to me
as intellectual theories or hard-shaped ideas.
They pulse through my organs and legs
and burn up my ears.
I know when your girlfriend’s really pissed off
even though she appears to give you what
you want.
I know when a storm is coming.
I can feel the invisible stirrings in the air.
I can tell you he won’t call back.
It’s a vibe I share.

I am an emotional creature.
I love that I do not take things lightly.
Everything is intense to me.
The way I walk in the street.
The way my mother wakes me up.
The way I hear bad news.
The way it’s unbearable when I lose.

I am an emotional creature.
I am connected to everything and everyone.
I was born like that.
Don’t you dare say all negative that it’s a
teenage thing
or it’s only only because I’m a girl.
These feelings make me better.
They make me ready.
They make me present.
They make me strong.

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Dear Leader, etc.

North Korean propaganda posters.

Original translation: “Do not forget the US imperialist wolves!”

I wonder if they also have these posters hanging up at CPAC today?

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The Daily Beast has decided to publish its list of the 24 laziest countries in the world. And, surprise surprise, according to their calculations, Americans win. Here’s how the “Coach Potato Olympics” were judged:

We evaluated four criteria, each weighed evenly:

Calories Per Day: from the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations from the 2009 Statistical Yearbook; 2003-2005 data.

Television Viewing: combined data from the OECD Society at a Glance 2009 and OECD Communications Outlook 2009, tracking hours of television watched per day and the percent of people who prefer to watch television with their free time.

Aversion to Playing Sports: from the OECD Society at a Glance 2009, tracking the percent of people who prefer to play sports with their free time.

Internet Usage: average hours per capita for December 2009, provided by ComScore.

Forgive me for sounding like an Anthropology major here, but aren’t we being a little Western-centric in defining laziness? True, the only participants were 24 developed countries as determined by the OECD.

One of my good friends is living in Thailand (not ranked on the list) and she noted that laziness manifests itself differently everywhere. One country might not have an aversion to sports, but what if individuals from another country have a tough time working independently? Doesn’t have a rich history of innovation?

I know the ranking isn’t remotely scientific, but I’d hope the Daily Beast could do better in its press on random international rankings.

Oh wait. Done.

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