Wednesday, July 20, 2005

A Little of the Old In and Out


(image via hello!magazine)

In: Nelson Mandela, at 87. Words cannot accurately describe our feelings towards Mr. Mandela, so we'll let Hello!Magazine do the describing:

"Former US President Bill Clinton was among the friends and loved-ones who helped Nelson Mandela ring in his 87th birthday on Tuesday. The American politician was just one of literally millions of people enjoying the fun as celebrations were staged all over South Africa. The festivities got underway just after midnight when a symbolic torch was lit in the prison cell on Robben Island where Nelson lived for almost two decades. A breathtaking fireworks display then lit up the sky over Cape Town as the torch, which is to be carried on a tour of the country in an effort to raise AIDS awareness, was brought back to the mainland. South Africa's former leader also had some rather smaller flames to contend with, as he was presented with a huge birthday cake in Johannesburg. Once he had blown out the candles on the sweet treat his old friend Archbishop Desmond Tutu led the throng in a boisterous rendition of Happy Birthday.

"Given his life-long dedication to helping others, it came as small surprise that the Nobel laureate preferred not to hog all the attention. Once the public celebrations had been taken care of he headed back to his family home in Qunu where he hosted a party for orphaned and vulnerable children."


(image via limelightagency)

Out: Wenner Media. Once upon a time (The Corsair sighs), the huffing of paint fumes would be a cause for celebration at the offices of Wenner Media rather than derision. Alas, those times have passed. Those intrepid Page Sixxies report:

"PAINT fumes sickened staffers at Wenner Media's Midtown headquarters on Monday, causing at least one photo department worker to vomit in the bathroom. 'They were painting our building's interior, and employees were forced to sit all day inhaling paint fumes,' coughed our source. 'I had to go to the men's room to vomit, the fumes made me so ill. Several people in my cubicle row complained of dizziness and tightness in their throats.'"

Somewhere, deep within the confined of Dante's Inferno, the hoary, whiskey-stained voice of Hunter S. Thompson croaks, "lightweights!"

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(image via NYSocialDiary)

In: Rick Pipino. Or, is he "Out"? The Corsair has a hard time believing that Rick Pipino is not gay, despite the fact that he was once Mr. Heidi Klum. We know, we know: Leave it alone, Corsair; MYOB. But the mystery now deepens with Pipino's recent discourse on the phenomenon known as beach hair. Our curiosity is duly piqued. According to the gang at Fashionweekdaily:

"Fashionweekdaily: How can we get beach hair?

"Rick Pipino: Pull it back when it's wet. Then let it go free when you go into the ocean, use the saltwater as texture. When you get out of the water, get your hands in your hair and shape the ponytail, that's the best way. Then take it down when it's almost dry.�

Let it go free, Rick Pipino, let it go free ...


(image via micheloud)

Out: Society, RIP. Frankly, when John Travolta showed up on the cover of the August 1999 Town and Country (What? The Biddles and Gettys and Annenbergs and Poitiers were busy?), The Corsair knew something was up. A thirsty evil is upon us, and it goes by the name of egalite. Now, in the salmon-colored weekly, Choire Sicha and Lizzy Rather take upon them the death of society with the Bridgehampton Polo Club as metaphor:

"Those few who find themselves in a position to knowledgeably discuss the attendees of the Bridgehampton Polo Club games often talk in code. New Money. No Money. The Real People don�t come anymore.

"The interpretation of this code might lead one down some very dark social alleys. Still, more objective comments might be made about changes in the world of polo. In 2002, the pert and highly evolved Natalie Portman gave out the trophies to the sweaty, hunky winners. In 2003, it was down to Kim Cattrall.

On this Saturday just past, July 16, the first day of polo season, the very first match of the 10th Annual Mercedes-Benz Polo Challenge, none other than Victoria Gotti materialized out of extremely thin air to offhandedly dispatch trophies to the tasty riders.

�'It�s about as low as it can get when Victoria Gotti is giving out the award to the polo players,' said Steven Gaines, the Hamptons society chronicler and author of The Sky�s the Limit: Passion and Property in Manhattan."

And, we cannot fail to note, that Victoria Gotti was a last-minute substitute for (Averted Gaze) "The Butterscotch Stallion." (Exaggerated cough suggesting feigned detachment). Society, RIP.


(imag via TheAge)

In: Fox Interactive Media, or FIM. Fox Interactive Media is rising, and so is CBS Digital. This trend of convergence of television and blogs and content portals continues apace. Ironically, as this is media consolidation is happening, a "transfer of power from broadcaster, distributor and supplier, to viewer, listener and consumer (says TheGuardian)." But why will FIM succeed now, as opposed to, say, the fiasco that was Disney Go five years ago? According to Paidcontent (link via Jason Calacanis):

"'One of the things Mr. Murdoch said to (Ross Levinsohn, President, Fox Interactive Media) was this is not about next quarter, this is about where is our company in 10 years. If we can set it up so that we're in the right place, I think all the other things will take care of themselves.' -- One question being asked about the roll-ups at Fox and CBS is what makes them think they can succeed with content portals when it's already been tried and failed -- think Disney's Go and NBC. What makes Fox different? 'Look, the internet business is in a different place than it was five years ago. I've heard plenty of arguments that's say had Go just stayed the course, they might be in a different place today but that's not where we focused on. The business is far more mature today in that broadband is real, wireless is real. On any given day I have millions of people visiting and if you added up all our sites we have millions of people visiting our collection of sites on a daily basis. That wasn't the case five years ago, six years ago. It is the case today. We weren't doing seven-figure ad deals with clients six years ago and we are doing them today. There weren't north of 100 million people online six years ago, there are today. It's just the evolution of the business.'"

More on the convergence of networks and content portals (and, blogs)


(image via worldandi)

Out: China. The international story of the day (month?) is the rapid military advancement of China. The Godotian paralysis of the United States is due, in part, because of the War on Terrorism on the one hand, and on the other, The Corsair believes, corporate salivation at the prosepects of a billion plus person market/opportunity.

If we are ever going to stop all this endless blather about the rise of Chinese power and take some strategic action, the time is now. Unleash Japan and reestablish SEATO (Which was disbanded in 1977), this time including the strategically important Australia, a nuclear Japan, and, if possible, the anxious South Korea (doubtful, The Corsair knows). According to the AP (link via Drudgie-Poo):

"China cannot be certain that its military, while steadily strengthening, is capable of conquering Taiwan, the the Pentagon said Tuesday in a new report on Chinese military power and strategy.

"Over the longer term, however, an increasingly modern Chinese military could pose a threat to U.S. and other forces in the Asia-Pacific region, it said.

"'Some of China's military planners are surveying the strategic landscape beyond Taiwan,' the report said.

"Among a number of such developments, it noted improvements in Chinese intercontinental-range missiles 'capable of striking targets across the globe, including the United States.' Air and naval force improvements also appear to be geared for operations beyond the geography around Taiwan, it added."

Or, have we already thrown Taiwan to the dragon's maw, the President's campaign promise notwithstanding.


Anonymous said...

Love the Mandela/Clinton post!

The Corsair said...

me too, adorable

Anonymous said...

The China thing is a little chilling, though...

The Corsair said...

Chinese expansion -- 9.5 percent this quarter -- si chilling, esp. considering it is a brutal and authoritarian regime.