Book Review: Babylon Berlin

September 20, 2017

Back in August, I read a Guardian piece about an upcoming European crime drama called Babylon Berlin based on novels by Volker Kutscher.

I was intrigued because, after all, northern Europe has been the source of a great deal of excellent detective material recently — Wallender, The Killing, Girl with a Dragon Tattoo, etc;  and the period, Germany of the late 1920s, is fascinating and lively — think Cabaret, So I ordered the only one of the novels held by VPL. It was the second in the series, the one called Babylon Berlin.

Now, I can usually push myself through most material but after two weeks effort, I have reached page 180 of the 520 and I have absolutely no feeling for any of the characters and the plots, such as they are, are tedious and failing to grab my attention.  The beginning of the book seems more like vignettes that might look good on the screen (and which seem to have been included only for that purpose) but which fail miserably on the page due to the dullness of the writing.

I was almost happy to receive the email from VPL telling me my time was up because I’ve given up on it, and I cannot recommend it.

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Night Music: Eh Ya Ye

September 20, 2017


Compton Cowboys: Guinness

September 20, 2017

For a long time now, Guinness has been just as good at producing commercial ads as it has been at brewing beer. Here is their latest effort that exemplifies that.


Housing At Britannia — Important Meeting

September 19, 2017

This coming Thursday, September 21st, there is a very important forum on the question of whether there should be housing on the re-developed Britannia Community Center site and, if so, what kind of housing should be contemplated there.

A week or so ago, Elizabeth Murphy wrote an opinion piece in the Sun that opposed housing of any kind on the site. This led to my own argument, more or less in favour of the idea with certain conditions, and a very spirited email exchange between a number of interested parties. Now, it is the broader community’s turn to have a say.

This particular debate about the future of a vital community resource is perhaps the most important we will have in this neighbourhood this decade, and I urge everyone interested in the future of Grandview to attend.

I would also urge that this debate be continued in the broadest possible sections of our community through public gatherings, email chains, and other means, rather than be delegated to a small and perhaps unrepresentative (though worthy) group who are able to attend certain committee meetings.

Finally, we must ensure that the decision on whether or not to include certain types of housing at Britannia be a genuinely community-wide decision, made by a plebiscite or some other form of all-resident participation.

In the meanwhile, I again urge everyone to attend this forum and make yourself heard.


Wise Words

September 19, 2017


Image: Pathway In Fall

September 19, 2017


Dinner Tonight #31

September 18, 2017

 

Tonight I made this wonderful Moroccan cauliflower and chick pea soup. Great mix of spices and textures.

 

Select image for a closer look,