Back in Black

First things first, I’m back in the driver seat of my bloggy, and I’d like to say thanks to my brother for being an interesting and active guestblogger. He has just started his own blog, which I’m proud to be the god-father of, and I’m adding to my blogroll. I like to think I’m like “Cheers” and he’s “Frasier.” (If you live somewhere where that cultural reference doesn’t work, basically its a spinoff)

I had a whole list of thoughts at different points during the tail-end of my voyage, and they’ve gotten all jumbled up since returning. So let me put them into lists right now.

Thoughts during my last day in Lisbon:

-It’s amazing how a country that doesn’t invest real money in its rail system, has an extensive and efficient bus network that would make greyhound blush.

-I love being the savior of all tourists, my own self-appointed public tourism service, you look lost with a map in your hand, I will stop and direct you.

– I must visit South Africa, because I’ve learned so much about it in the last 3 years.

– Apparently the best Arabic teachers are Egyptian or Syrian, everything else – according to my buddy at the Libyan Embassy – is too fast and sloppy for me.

Thoughts during my journey back to the ‘Dam:

– Air travel is the biggest hassle everywhere and some rules have no explanation at all.

– I hope my luggage is hanging out in the cargo bay with those cute Dutch girls’ luggage.

Schiphol airport is the most efficient and home-feeling airport I’ve ever known.

– Man I hate having luggage, I want to travel with just a plastic sack from now on.

But enough of these happy thoughts. The journey has ended, and shit is hitting the fan all over the world, as usual. One of my oldest journalist friends put me on to a horrendous situation at my one-time employer the Village Voice. It’s bad…. real bad. They are firing in the name of cost-cutting and organizational strategy changes. The list of casualties is astounding and I’m deeply disturbed: Richard Goldstein, Cynthia Cotts, Alisa Solomon… My most loved alternative paper has indeed become some obscure money-making rag. I will keep reading it, because quality journalism still goes on there, but the managing editors and corporate bosses have poisoned that place. Worst of all, I can’t find a peep about it with any of the Voice Media Papers, they’ve lost the power to be critical of their own paper. Talk about needing a revolution, I volunteer to fly back and help barricade the doors and take back the once glorious newsweekly. Maybe Norman Mailer and Jack Newfield can join.

Note to Self: Talk about BlogMaverick’s new project

Also thoughts on seeing Cry Freedom on TV

Today’s Music: Jimmy Eat World – Clarity (or as I call it, the sing-along album)