"We're encouraged, foodwise, to pay attention to contrast and balance: a little bit of salt to balance out intense sweetness, a little bit of acid to balance out a lot of rich fat, a bleach-haired goober with sunglasses on the back of his head hustling Donkey Sauce-drowned garbage-food on two different cable channels every nine minutes to balance out any confidence you had that success in life accrues to the deserving, and so on." Deadspin d/b/a Foodspin teaches us that sometimes too much is just enough.
Often hailed as Canada's favourite cocktail, the Caesar is a combination of vodka, Clamato, Tabasco, salt and pepper, and Worcestershire sauce served in a glass rimmed with celery salt. It is almost unheard of outside of Canada. [more inside]
Over 143 episodes of audio, Mike Duncan has covered the founding of Rome through the Crisis of the Third Century in his History of Rome podcast [previously], having now reached the last pagan Emperor, Julian The Apostate. Enlivened by drawing on comparisons to popular culture, from The Empire Strikes Back (when Hannibal makes his appearance) to The Godfather (as a metaphor for Rome's social client system), Mr Duncan's work makes for fun, informative 25-minute sessions with the greatest empire of the ancient western world. If you're interested in more, the podcasts could be handily supplemented with... [more inside]
Oy coom too berry Sayzurr, nut too preyze im. That's a reconstruction of how Brutus's famous speech from "Julius Caesar" may have sounded to Shakespeare's original audience. (Scroll down in the linked page for the rest of the speech -- or look inside this post.) If you'd like to learn more about Original Pronunciation (OP), check out www.pronouncingshakespeare.com, where you'll find several recordings by David Crystal, the scholar who probably knows most about the subject. You can also listen to this example or this NPR broadcast, first linked to in this 2005 post, here. Ben Crystal, David's son, tries some OP here. [more inside]
"Crossing the Rubicon" is a phrase widely believed to refer to the moment when Julius Caesar and his army crossed the stream separating Gaul from Italy, a move which meant civil war and commonly used to mean "point of no return". Now Swiss archaeologists are challenging that theory with a phrase that should be "Double Crossing the Rubicon".
Hangover Heaven By The Sea: In 1969, Canadian Montenegran Walter Chell invented the Caesar Cocktail as the perfect reflection of (and introduction to) Italian food, by mixing tomato juice, clam juice and oregano with Brazilian lime juice and Russian vodka. Canada, Montenegro, Italy, Russia, Brazil, California: is this the perfect multi-ethnic hangover-buster or what? [More inside.]