For Russia and China, the Arab Spring only offers a warning "Tomorrow's visit to Damascus by Russia's Foreign Minister, Sergei Lavrov, is designed to demonstrate that there is an alternative to Western 'belligerence'. It is possible that Russia will try to put together a Syrian transition deal."
Infinite capacity (and the hidden cost in our power bills) "Every time someone in Australia installs a $1,500 air conditioning system, it costs $7,000 to upgrade the electricity network to make sure there's enough capacity to run that system on the hottest summer day."
Barbie wife: The transformation of the political spouse "While a trophy wife is admired by her man, the admiring eyes of a 'transformational wife' are there to propel her man to the next level." (Maureen Dowd)
The death of the cyberflâneur "Anyone entertaining dreams of the Internet as a refuge for the bohemian, the hedonistic and the idiosyncratic probably didn’t know the reasons behind the disappearance of the original flâneur."
The ABC of Wislawa Szymborska "For over seven years, since tearing it out of (an) issue of the New Yorker, I’ve had the same Wislawa Szymborska poem taped up above my desk. Here it is."