Hanukkah draws nigh and that means latkes
. [The oil in which the potato pancake is cooked symbolizes the miraculously long-burning fuel that lit the Second Temple.] Bubala Please
shows you how to keep it real. [more inside]
posted by Egg Shen
on Dec 2, 2012 -
is not my original last name. It was changed 300 years ago to Taxali
by a Maharaja in India. My ancestor invented a coin that was difficult to counterfeit and was subsequently knighted Taxali by the Maharaja. It means, "Maker or Steward of The Mint". How serendipitous!! Here I am, 300 years later, honouring my ancestor's achievements and mine and my sister's family name.
posted by unliteral
on Jan 23, 2012 -
A sub-directorate of the Bureau of Special Christmas Operations (BOSCO), Santa's Little Secret Service
is an Elvish security agency with the primary mission of ensuring the safety of Santa, Mrs. Claus and other high-value Christmas persons. The Service is separated into divisions
focusing on personal protection, diplomatic protection, intelligence, and Christmas certainty operations.
When not protecting Santa, LSS can found assisting in protection of other high-value, Holiday persons, such as the Easter Bunny
with the help of their unique Candy Cane weapons
posted by Brandon Blatcher
on Dec 10, 2011 -
This weekend marks the time of the Hajj
, a core pillar of Islam in which great tides of humanity
venture to the ancient city of Mecca to honor God.
Predating Mohammed's birth by centuries, the pilgrimage comprises several days of rites
, from congregation like snow on Mount Arafat
and the ritual stoning of Shaitan
to the circling of the sacred Kaaba
cubical monolith Muslims pray toward daily
) and kissing the Black Stone
(colored by the absorption of myriad sins, and believed by some to be a fallen meteorite
While the city has modernized
to handle this largest of annual gatherings -- building highway-scale ramps, gaudy skyscrapers for the ultra-rich
, and tent cities the size of Seattle
-- it remains mysterious, as unbelievers are forbidden from entering its borders
Richard Francis Burton became famous for touring the city in disguise
to write a rare travelogue
, but contemporary viewers have a more immediate guide: Vice Magazine
journalist Suroosh Alvi, who smuggled a minicam into the city to record The Mecca Diaries [alt]
, a 14-minute documentary of his own Hajj journey.
Browse the manual
to see what goes into a Hajj trip, or watch the YouTube livestream
to see the Grand Mosque crowds in real time.
posted by Rhaomi
on Nov 4, 2011 -
This year's top holiday duet doesn't feature Mariah Carey or Will Ferrell. It's Rodney the Mailman [local news]
and Andrew WK [original]
, live from the Chicago offices of the Onion AV Club in their Holiday Undercover project.
In typical Andrew WK style, a slightly... different version
is also available.
But this is not Rodney's first appearance -- nor are these covers few and far between. [more inside]
posted by Madamina
on Dec 22, 2010 -
Early in 1903, the success
of the New York production of the musical adaptation of L. Frank Baum's The Wizard of Oz
got composer Victor Herbert and librettist Glen MacDonough thinking. They thought that it might be possible to duplicate that success by applying a Christmas theme to Baum's story and then sprinkling in a few Mother Goose characters. Later that year the resulting show, Babes in Toyland
, was a rousing success
. Thirty years later it was made into a movie
starring two of the greatest motion picture actors of the era, Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy, produced by Hal Roach
. But this post isn't about either of those productions; it's about the worst
production. [more inside]
posted by Toekneesan
on Dec 17, 2010 -
Chris Kimball prepares a 12-course meal from Fannie Farmer's 1896 cookbook.
Using only a coal stove and other authentic Victorian-era kitchen staples, the chef, who lives in Fannie Farmer's former home
, recreated a classic holiday Victorian meal from her iconic 1896 cookbook.
The twelve courses included: "rissoles (filled and fried puff pastry), mock turtle soup with fried brain balls, lobster à l’Américaine, roast goose with chestnut stuffing and jus, wood-grilled salmon, roast saddle of venison, Canton punch, three molded Victorian jellies and a spectacular French-inspired Mandarin cake."
Chris Kimball is the creator of public television's America's Test Kitchen
) and Cook's Illustrated
. Naturally, he chronicled the experience in a book, aptly titled, Fannie's Last Supper
. In it, he offers some moden adaptations of Fannie Farmer's recipes. A film depicting the difficulties of authentically re-creating the meal airs this Fall.
posted by misha
on Oct 6, 2010 -
In 1992, CBS released a Christmas special directed by Bill Meléndez
and produced by Lorne Michaels
(a more current link
), the cast included John Goodman
in the title role, Jonathan Winters
, Jan Hooks
, Andrea Martin
, Brian Doyle-Murray
, and a young Elisabeth Moss
as Holly. Music by Mark Mothersbaugh
. How could this go wrong?
, in an abbreviated version, but really more than you need to see. [more inside]
posted by Toekneesan
on Dec 19, 2009 -
(part 1) ...For Wings...
(part 2) ...That Work
(part 3). The only Christmas Special you'll see this year with hairballs, a cross-dressing cockroach, Ronald Coleman and a 22-second warning. The apex for Berkeley Breathed and Opus (for Bill, notsomuch). via.
posted by oneswellfoop
on Dec 12, 2009 -
He was elected at the nadir of the worst depression in history; 25% of the workforce was unemployed, two million were homeless. Yet in the face of this, he made us an optimistic and far-reaching New Deal, creating among other programs a federal minimum wage, social security, and the FDIC. He pulled us out of dire financial straits and, when our country was called upon to fight in World War II, he brought us to the cusp of victory. In his unprecedented thirteen years in office, he cemented his undisputed legacy as one of the greatest presidents in American history. But before he could achieve any of this, Franklin Delano Roosevelt had a promise to keep — a promise to the "wet vote," whose indispensable support he had called upon
in 1932 during his first presidential campaign when he promised to repeal the 18th Amendment
and end Prohibition
. And thus, as legend has it, immediately after his first fireside chat
from the White House in March 1933, Roosevelt turned to his two top aides and said, "I think it's time for a beer.
" And yes, indeed
, it was
. [more inside]
posted by churl
on Dec 5, 2009 -