Archive for the 'Sport' Category

Dinner of Champions

moules marinieres stew leftovers

When our friend, the lovely and talented Andrea Frustaci, triumphed last week in the Burnaby Open Tennis Tournament, we had to have a celebratory dinner. The centerpiece of the menu was moules marinières with a nice crusty sourdough bread. (Dessert, incidentally, utilized the recently-made rose petal jam as a topping for vanilla ice cream, accompanied by lavender shortbread.)

But there were way more mussels than we could eat, and a goodly bit of the rich, creamy broth. So, with the leftovers, a handfull-or-two of bay shrimp, a few yukon gold potatoes, an ear of corn, and supplimental splashes of white wine and cream, I prepared the fantabulous one-pot meal pictured above. Is it a stew? A chowder? A “panroast” a la The Oyster Bar in Grand Central Station? Who could say? Our mouths were full.

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The Agony of Defeat

Ankle on Ice

I’m back-on-my-back.

A nasty little ankle sprain had been elevated and iced for the better-part of four days, with intervening trips to the doctor and physio and a regimen of careful range-of-motion enhancers, to speed recovery.  To goal was to be fit for last night’s doubles match in the Burnaby Open Tennis Tournament.  Let’s just say the effort came-up a little short.

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Brave New World Cup

World Cup Upsets

It all began with what seemed an amusing, head scratching, eyebrow raising fluke. North Korea nicked a goal off Brazil and shipped only two, as the team ranked first in all-the-world barely scraped by the team ranked No. 105. (This ranking includes only national teams. It would be exponentially lower if it included pub sides and teams in pick-up games.) The next day, a talentless, ambitionless Swiss side shut-out tournament favorites Spain 1 – 0. Soon all-hell was breaking loose.

Greece won a football match — against Nigeria, no less. Serbia beat Germany. Tiny Slovenia rode its luck to draw a very good American squad. Camaroon went down with nary a peep to Denmark — which was only a fraction as embarrassing as Ghana drawing with the Australians and, in the process, defying a long-established international tradition by letting the Shielaroos score a goal.

Then, just this morning, the New Zealand All Whites, who had already taken a surprise point from Slovakia, held cup holders Italy to a 1 – 1 draw.

And I’m not even mentioning the fact that England and France are winless, which are not really surprises. Only Englishmen think their team is not crap; and not even the French are deluded about Les Blues Calamiteux.

What’s going on in this World Cup?

“Global warming,” suggests Yoo-Mi.

Political Football

North Korean Football Fans

One of the favorite shibboleths about international sporting events like the Olympics and World Cup is that countries temporarily set aside politics and bygones to come together in the pure spirit of sport. This ideal never seems entirely to bear out. Admit it: geopolitical dynamics add to the drama of certain sporting events.

Today’s test case: is there anyone out there that doesn’t want to see Brazil put half-a-dozen goals past North Korea?

******

Schadenfreude Update

Brazil 2 – DPR Korea 1

Dear Leader will be so pleased. Dunga, less so. Sometimes things don’t work out the way we hope in football or geopolitics.

Golden Olympics

Logo of the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games

A week before the start to the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Games, I had the temerity to wonder whether the experience would be fun for the city and its visitors. At the time, there were few tell-tales to be seen on the city streets. Now the games are concluded and I have absolutely no difficulty declaring them a resounding success.

VANOC put on a superb show, not only for the world’s best winter athletes but for Vancouver as well. The experience was inclusive, inspirational, and delightful. Much has been made, and will continue to be made, of the economic costs and benefits that go into hosting an Olympic Games. That accounting will play-out in the years to come and the ultimate judgment cannot be predicted with any certainty, one way or the other. But only the most Grinch-like observer, pushing an ulterior agenda, could say that these games were anything but marvelous.

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No Fun Olympics?

Rain-Soaked Olympic Rings in Vancouver

Last summer, in the face of the fabulously successful Summer Olympic Games in Beijing, I raised the question: Could India host an impressive Olympics? With the Winter Games now a scant two weeks away, that same question must be asked of Vancouver. Though I write this from my Vancouver home, I cannot say that I have a clue what the answer might be.

I assume than the Vancouver Olympic Organizing Committee (VANOC) has the infrastructure and logistical matters well taken care of. I’m sure the events will go-off in decent venues, visitors will find themselves well accommodated and transported, and that they’ll even overcome the snow shortage occasioned by the rotten luck of an Olympic year El Niño in the Pacific. But will it be any fun?

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The End of Dadaism

Sourav Ganguly Retires

Leave it to Sourav Ganguly to go out in a perplexing blaze of nothingness, with a first-ball duck at Nagpur, just as he entered with a perplexing blaze of brilliance, with an opening-innings century at Lords nearly a dozen years ago. Always a bit of drama with Sourav. Okay, more than a bit.

Continue reading ‘The End of Dadaism’


Blasts from the Past

Man Up!
Man up you pussy!

... because the idiocy of manliness is an evergreen topic.

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Talking Turkey
how to cook a perfect turkey in half the time

... because Canada and the US will celebrate their Thanksgiving holidays and, regrettably and preventably, not 1-cook-in-10 will serve a decent turkey.

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Filial Piety Awareness Day
Kaki Tusler, Mother's Day Celebrant

... because everyday is Mother's Day.

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America Dreaming Small
American Dream

... because the American Dream seems but a distant memory, given the country's dominant ethos of small-mindedness.

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Serenity and Gratitude to Bring in the New Year
New Year's Eve at Tibetan Pavillion

... to remind us that not every mix of Tibetans and Western spiritual seekers has to be nauseating.

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Incredible Vision
Infinite Vision

... to celebrate the new edition of Infinite Vision published in India.

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Expelliarmus! Harry Potter and the Path to Gandhian Nonviolence
Expelliarmus, Potter, Gandhi, Nonviolence

... reprised because military strategy seems more cruel and less effective than ever -- and certainly there is a better way.

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India Going Nowhere Fast
Nano in Flames

... because cars are ruining Pondicherry, where I live. How badly are they fucking up your Indian town?

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Understanding the Gift Economy
Gift Economy Explained

... reprinted because more-and-more people seem want to understand the gift economy. (Yeah!)

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