30 November 2015
Vol. V, No. 271

From Elizabeth Boleman-Herring: Apropos of recent world events, I felt it was time to re-post jazz trumpeter (and E Street Band stalwart) Barry Danielian’s thoughtful essay, “One American Muslim Speaks About His Faith.” I’min generala fan of Bill Maher, but I believe he’s dead wrong about Islam, and Danielian’s meditation on his creed is one of the most eloquent testimonies I’ve come across in support of why we must never conflate baby with bath water. Had I been asked to evaluate Christianity as it existed during The Inquisition or the reign of (just for example, picking a historical period at random) Henry VIII of England, I’d have gone all Bill Maher on the followers of Jesus, hook, line, sinker, noose, rack, and axe. It was an honor to publish Danielian while he still made time, in his busy life of touring and family, to write, and an honor now to re-post this piece. As an appetizer, this Monday, Weekly Hubris features a culinary column by Alexander Billinis (if you know what “Avjar” is, your mouth has already begun watering); and a dessert course (two hysterical videos) by our in-house cut-up, Tim Bayer.  

Islam is peace.Rumi Nation

“One American Muslim Speaks About His Faith” By Barry Danielian

NEW YORK New York—(Weekly Hubris)—11/30/2015—I love quotes. They’re short little gems of wisdom, easy to remember and often expressed in clever prose. I maintain a tradition, when performing gigs with my own group, of reciting quotes throughout the gig. Sometimes, they have a connection to the song we’re about to play; sometimes they reflect what is “in the air” at that time, be it politics or social commentary. (Read more . . .)

Sacks of Ruski Krstur peppers (and a charming three-year-old, for scale).

Sacks of Ruski Krstur peppers (and a charming three-year-old, for scale).

Roaming East Roman

“The Joys of ‘Avjar’: Culinary Memory Lane” By Alexander Billinis

CHICAGO Illinois—(Weekly Hubris)—11/30/2015—One of the great joys of life in the Balkans is the preparation and enjoyment of foods and spirits laden with flavor and culture. The boiling pots, the kitchen gardens groaning with ripe fruits and vegetables, the smell of Vojvodina soup on a cold winter Sunday are pleasures that remain ensconced in my memory. Serbia—and Greece—have amazingly rich cuisines whose fullest, mouth-watering flavors just do not cross the Atlantic. You have to be there, where the raw ingredients burst up from the indigenous soils, to enjoy them to the fullest. (Read more . . .)

Lip reading the debates.

Lip reading the debates.

Won Over By Reality

“Debatable Lip Reading” By Tim Bayer

BRIGHTON New York—(Weekly Hubris)—11/30/2015—If you missed the Democratic and Republican party debates, fret not, for I have found video summaries for you! The footage I’ve come up with may not comprise word-for-word synopses of the two events, but I would argue that the, ah, “translations” I’ve located are significantly more entertaining than the originals. (Read more . . .)

We are on this earth for one thing: to embrace life and evolve.

We are on this earth for one thing: to embrace life and evolve.

Waking Point

“The Way Forward” By Helen Noakes

SAN FRANCISCO California—(Weekly Hubris)—11/23/2015—So many things occur to me as I go about the business of bringing my house into order. I cull my collection of books, filling bags with volumes that once were relevant, hoping that others will find them as useful as I once did. I discard documents and drawings created by me in a past life, in a profession I long ago found tediously repetitive and useless. And, seeing the crammed boxes and bags hauled away by the garbage collector, I rejoice at the clean, empty sidewalk left behind. (Read more . . .)

Istanbul’s domes and spires, mesmerizing in any season.

Istanbul’s domes and spires, mesmerizing in any season.

Eating Well Is The Best Revenge

“The Turkish Connection” By Diana Farr Louis

ATHENS Greece—(Weekly Hubris)—11/23/2015—There are only a handful of lokums left in the box I brought back from Istanbul and I’m hoarding them. They are covered in rose petals and the dark pink gummy interior is studded with whole green pistachios. It took me an age to decide which to select from the shop on Istiklal, a vast, multi-leveled emporium devoted to the full gamut of Anatolian sweets, including an extravaganza of lokums in several sizes as well as flavors. Although I don’t even like sugary things much, I can’t resist genuine Turkish Delight, which is so much stiffer, chewier, and more imaginative than the Greek versions. (Read more . . .)

Farmers Hall, today.

Farmers Hall, today.

The Highest Cauldron 

“Gaudeamus Pendleton!” By Anita Sullivan

EUGENE Oregon—(Weekly Hubris)—11/23/2015—You can learn a lot about a town by delivering newspapers there before daylight. Delivering newspapers anywhere has now become a quaint ritual tottering its way to oblivion. But I was lucky enough to be immersed in a version of this “ancient” ritual, if only for part of a single year. And, best of all, in an amazing little town, with my brother. (Read more . . .)

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