It's great to have my Maputo friend reveal her hand, so to speak, but slightly disappointing to know that I don't have a regular from Ghana. Oh well, win some, lose some...
Now you know that I have an interest in flags and you may have worked out that I rather like maps too. Not only do I have a blogmap but I've also recently plastered my wallpaper with maps. Just in the interests of overkill, I may have to add one of those world map things. Then again, maybe not. So I find it very interesting to read about the recent discovery of an ancient map that suggests that Chinese seamen were the first to sail around the world. Its authenticity is still under dispute but its discovery comes relatively soon after Gavin Menzies wrote his 2003 bestseller, '1421: The Year China Discovered the World'. I never got to read the book even though I read a lot of articles and reviews that made me want to read it. Some reviews were very favourable and drew attention to the fact that the Chinese explored because they had a yearning to learn about, rather than subjugate, other people. Some were a lot less favourable and referred to it as 'a dubious book that offers an object lesson in amateurish research, slapdash editing and publishing greed'. While this newly discovered map may give credence to Menzies, Simon Jenkins, writing in the Guardian, has interesting things to say about maps and discovery but is quite sure that the map is a hoax.
Here's a fun link that I found on Monkey Boy. You provide your birth date and you're told what the UK No.1 was on that day.
Mine was Elvis Presley's A Fool Such As I / I Need Your Love Tonight. Not sure what to make of that!
Let me know what your number ones were.
After having said, in my review of the film, that I'd thought of not mentioning it at all, here I am discussing Brokeback Mountain again. But I thought you'd appreciate this film clip I was led to on Bill's blog. I love it when people I don't like visibly/audibly squirm.
Incidentally, another reader of mine drew my attention to his review of Brokeback Mountain, a similarly underwhelmed impression. His review is much more detailed than mine - it's good to read another dissenting voice after so much praise elsewhere.
Thanks to Bill again, I've come across Tottyland, 'a detailed discussion into the merits or lack of merits of totty'. Obviously, it's a gay site that displays lots of male flesh but what distinguishes it from most gay ogling sites is the way it concentrates on men who are in the public eye rather than porn stars displaying their assets and getting it together in weird and wonderful ways.Not that I've anything against those sites, of course!
I suspect women may enjoy visiting Tottyland and not feel odd about it.
And, lastly, don't you just love this double-speak?
"While removing search results is inconsistent with Google's mission, providing no information (or a heavily degraded user experience that amounts to no information) is more inconsistent with our mission."
That's part of Google's official statement on censoring itself in China. I know all about economic realities of doing business with the fastest growing economy in the world but that sort of double-speak harks back to the best days of communism.