Thursday, May 04, 2006

Booksfull of Urban Crime and Punishment

Click images for huge views.

On This Day for May 4th is about cities I've known. Today, Peter Minuit landed on Manhattan Island which he purchased for about 24 bucks. It's the day of the Haymarket Riots in Chicago, as well as the completion of the Sears Tower. It marks the founding of the Ancient Order of Hibernians, a group established to help Irish immigrants that I'd never heard about until I saw this street marker near Chinatown. Is all that's left of them the sign? I took that picture on the same day, almost a year ago, that I roamed across the the beautiful geometries of the Brooklyn Bridge and all around lower Manhattan with my camera and a friend.

1) Thanks to Tobias Buckell for posting the majority of yesterday's Crystal Rain review on his site. I empathize with and forgive his editorial snipping of my introductory comment about the title.

2) In other bookish updates, I've just posted my review of Seymour Shubin's Witness to Myself at As a bonus, here's an interview of this hard-working true crime writer and novelist. I bet this patinaed professional's got enough great stories to occupy a thousand nights of barstools without ever buying a drink.

3) An executive at a Manhattan heart disease foundation embezzled hundreds of thousands in charity funds to pay Lady Sage, his favorite dominatrix.

4) Mexico plans to legalize drugs. This is an inventive way to equilibrate the traffic flow over the borders. Operators of package tours to Amsterdam are dismayed.

5) Three men are convicted in Norway as accessories in the 2004 theft of one of the four versions of Edvard Munch's Scream. Of course, we still don't know who actually took it off the wall or where it went. The thieves have been ordered to pay $123 million in restitution to Oslo. I think if they sold the painting to a private horder of art, they might just be able to swing that.

6) Tourism and inflation are up in Rome. Now, a beer costs $1200.

7) Trial judge from Phillipines dismissed from bench merely for consulting in his chambers. Perhaps it was because Angel, Luis, and Armand are imaginary mystical dwarfs.

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