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BC Is Raining Words

The weather this year in BC has been so extreme that it’s sprouted four new forbidding phrases: heat dome, weather bomb, bomb cyclone, and atmospheric river.

They may not be new to meteorologists, but they are to most of us. So, aside from fleeing for our lives, are we going to have to learn a whole new lexicon of fear when it comes to sticking our noses out the door?

But I digress. Here is this week’s Omnium-Gatherum.

1. Best friends forever. The best argument yet for diversity.

2. See James Bond at home, alone. If going to a movie theatre feels all just too much, you can cuddle up at home and watch 007 via the Cineplex Store. Daniel Craig’s last Bond could be the best Bond ever.

3. Paul Simon and Malcolm Gladwell. It seems Gladwell has worshipped Simon since he was a kid. So he interviewed the 80-year-old music icon for over 30 hours. Then he put together an audiobook which includes archival audio tracks and never-before-heard live studio versions of hits like “The Boxer,” “The Sound of Silence,” and “Graceland.” Plus, of course, Gladwell’s trenchant questions and Simon’s intriguing answers. Here’s the trailer.

Speaking of cross-over rock stars, the robot-builders from Boston Dynamics got their robot dogs to imitate the young Rolling Stones – with murky implications.

4. Can suicide be predicted? If ever something was worth finding out, it’s this. As Will Stephenson says in this brilliant Harper’s piece: “The dream of scientific precision in psychiatry has culminated in a vision of suicide as less a private existential dilemma than a condition that can be anticipated with superhuman accuracy.”

5. Just don’t do anything stupid. Those words are taped inside the cockpit of a creaky single-engine bush plane we fly in every summer in northern BC. It’s still there, but here’s how to really avoid stupidity, which is much easier than seeking brilliance.

6. Why are fashion houses opening restaurants? Years back, ArmaniBulgari, Christian Louboutin and Versace all opened eponymous luxury hotels. Now, they’re doing the same with restaurants. It seems there’s money to be made in memories.

7. Your 1816 stagecoach ride. Sure, being stuck in the back of the plane to Vancouver may feel like that. But really, it was worse long ago. All the more so, because money couldn’t keep the riffraff away. It took Toronto writer Eli Burnstein to point out the difference between travel then and now.

8. The extremest of all extreme ski videos. Or at least the screamiest.

9. It’s not enough to get kids out of the house. They need to get into nature. That’s how to learn about the world and how to save it. Here’s Wade Davis at his wildly articulate best, making that argument at an online event for NatureBridge, the US charity that takes city kids to National Parks where they can learn for themselves what nature’s all about.

10. I’m a sucker for Beethoven’s 9th. It seems the Croatia Tourist Board is too. So they did this extended commercial for their country using the Ode to Joy  (Europe’s National Anthem) to show off its best parts.

If you want to see Beethoven’s 9th live in Toronto, it’s on at Koerner Hall next Saturday, November 27th.

Forbidden Words: Here are this week’s words you can no longer use in polite company: Marie Henein.

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