Month: January 2016

How did your parents decide on your name?

By: | Post date: January 18, 2016 | Comments: No Comments
Posted in categories: Personal

Boutros’ Nick, as the villagers called him: Ο Νικολής του Πούτρου. But in the papers of the state and church, he was set down as Nicholas Hadjimarcou. With a c and a dj, because the state was British Cyprus, which acknowledged that the Cypriots pronounces their j’s. The Greek alphabet doesn’t, so Νικόλαος Χατζημάρκου. Boutros’ […]

Who was considered history’s greatest villain before WW2?

By: | Post date: January 16, 2016 | Comments: No Comments
Posted in categories: Culture

Brandon Li’s answer of Pharaoh is excellent, but given the Judaeo-Christian context of Pharaoh, I’d argue that a bigger villain in that culture was Judas Iscariot. Tony Wright has argued that for pre-Hitler Australian politics, but I’m sure Judas was invoked much more widely than that: From Judas to Goebbels: when political insult risks dying […]

What is your favorite composition by John Adams?

By: | Post date: January 10, 2016 | Comments: No Comments
Posted in categories: Music

It’s still Nixon in China for me. I have a soft spot for Short Ride In A Fast Machine, even if it is all flash. Harmonilehre, as a third pressing of Mahler. Grand Pianola Music, for the sheer impudence of it. (Lolapalooza does that too.) Answered 2016-01-10 [Originally posted on]

What is the coolest way to handle a man hitting on your girlfriend/wife?

By: | Post date: January 8, 2016 | Comments: No Comments
Posted in categories: Personal

So, me and the missus are on our honeymoon in Europe, and our travels take us to Florence. My wife, an Under the Tuscan Sun (book) tragic, wants to retrace her steps from the last time she was in town, through San Gimignano, Siena, Orvieto  (in deepest darkest Umbria), and Cortona. Actually, Orvieto was my […]

I have an impression that some Aussies are overly ‘patriotic’ or over-loving their country. Is this true?

By: | Post date: January 7, 2016 | Comments: No Comments
Posted in categories: Australia

Other respondents have argued that Australians are not overly patriotic compared to Americans. They are dismissing patriotism as the preserve of bogans. However 20 years ago, bogans did not express patriotism any more overtly than the elite; and wrapping yourself in the flag, particularly during a race riot like the 2005 Cronulla riots, would have […]

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