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On From the Mailbag: Put on Your Crowdsourcing Hat

@feartie Orhan Pamuk, My Name is Red -- so many scenes of mysterious painters trudging through softly falling snowflakes. And it's political -- but it's the politics of the image in early modern Istanbul.*

*And yes, Pamuk takes some liberties, and fetishizing Islamic injunctions against image-making is a thing, but I still like the novel a lot.

Posted on October 25, 2012 at 11:27 am 0

On Mixing Greek and Latin Roots Is Wrong

@lil_bobbytables @jaya
The US still does privilege "family unity" in doling out green cards and visas, which means that spouses (and fiances) and children of US citizens are eligible to jump the queue, so to speak, and get green cards only for being related. So yes, boom, marriage=legal status, more or less.

This is not to say that it's an automatic or easy process to do. There's still tons of paperwork and waiting, and it seems like a pretty hair-raising experience from watching several friends go through the process. For instance, you're first issued a temporary "conditional" green card that means you're legally a resident -- but if you don't renew it at the right time, you're in trouble. Still, it's a lot more clear cut and a lot easier to get a green card as a spouse than through most other methods.

Here is a nifty infographic about immigration and naturalization: http://visual.ly/what-part-legal-immigration-dont-you-understand

Posted on September 5, 2012 at 2:02 am 0

On We Wouldn't Have to Eat Kraft Dinner

@aliceandstuff Your mom kind of has a point -- but I am with you on the deliciousness! Really, what more does one need in life than a bunch of noodles?

Posted on August 29, 2012 at 11:50 am 0

On Get "Rich" Quick Scheme!

@Toffamu It's because airlines have, in the past few years, entered into this system in which they purposely try to run every flight as full as possible and prefer overbooking fewer flights than underbooking the number of flights they used to run. It was not always like this! It is one of the many reasons why air travel requires a steely stomach these days. (Or, perhaps, I have become an old codger?)

Posted on August 22, 2012 at 11:41 pm 2

On Get "Rich" Quick Scheme!

@packedsuitcase Oh my god, I remembered the Frankfurt airport as having good food. So recently when I was there for 6+ hours, I decided to try all the different terminals, looking for the chimerical good food place.

Let me warn you all, IT DOES NOT EXIST. The entire Frankfurt airport is under construction, and it is all weirdly partitioned off for security. I kept accidentally going through passport control, so I got four stamps in one day, accidentally, wasting an entire page of my passport. And there is no good food in the entire airport. I know because I checked every nook and cranny of that cursed place. The pretzels in terminal Z are pretty good though!

Also, I love the Amsterdam airport. You can buy an entire wheel of cheese in that place, which is a big plus.

Posted on August 22, 2012 at 11:37 pm 2

On Vacation Your Way to Email Solvency

@roaringkitten Thank you for this very good idea!

Posted on August 17, 2012 at 12:33 am 0

On Vacation Your Way to Email Solvency

Getting off the internet is the best! I try to do it for a few hours daily, for writing purposes, and am very thankful for my local wireless-free coffee shop. I also love setting my out-of-office auto-reply. "I will be away on research for the month of December..." makes me feel like a grown-up anthropologist instead of a goofball grad student.

ETA: As an added bonus, being offline means I don't have to spend my time thinking about why weird, vaguely misogynist ads from Virgin Mobile/Buzzfeed are showing up on my Hairpin. Seriously, guys, this is a weird one.

Posted on August 16, 2012 at 1:51 pm 2

On Fictional Establishments We Would Like to Open One Day

@ejcsanfran When people write in to my rescue group to ask if the cat has been "spaded," I always picture a combination veterinarian/botanist with a scalpel and a garden trowel, digging out cat ovaries. Now I will picture this scenario taking place in a casino until the end of time!!

Posted on August 9, 2012 at 12:56 am 2

On "Grizzly Man" is on Netflix Instant

Oh boy, Grizzly Man! My favorite film to tell other people to watch ("and all the time it's also about the nature of cinema itself!") while internally shuddering at the memory of my five-day recovery, post-Grizzly-Man, in which I listened to that coyote-themed "ooh-yip, ooh-yip, ooh" song on repeat and contemplated my relationship with my own mortality.

But oh my god, those foxes. Maybe i could watch it again for the foxes?

Posted on August 1, 2012 at 10:02 am 3

On "Richly Informative"

@nyikint Augh! Read Amitav Ghosh, read Kiran Desai, read Chitra Banerjee (on the beach, preferably). Anything but that jerk Arvind Adiga! His second book I found even more misanthropic than the first. Yes, I am a glutton for punishment. Also, the guy knows how to string together a sentence (and train rides can be long in India, so sometimes I find myself buying six novels at a time at the Landmark). So, okay, fine, read him! But with misgivings!

@mystique I think "Slumdog Millionaire" is the exact filmic equivalent of "White Tiger," except with an unrelenting, unquestioned particularist optimism and a dance sequence.

Also, I study Indian cinema, and as soon as I declare this to a new friend or stranger, 99% of the time the person asking asks me whether or not "Slumdog" was "accurate." So I may be biased in my weary grudging exhaustion with all things Slumdog.

**ETA: Except Anil Kapoor. I will never tire of Anil Kapoor! **

Posted on July 12, 2012 at 2:36 pm 0