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Monday, June 06, 2005

"Traffic signals in New York are just rough guidelines." - David Letterman


I keep getting nightmares about my hair being cut, shorn, trimmed or snipped off. ugh.


Someone: "Hey, want free salsa lessons? i need ya on my rag team! join me please? ensure the dance is gonna be fun! reply me asap k? tanks!"

Me: "Haha you must be out of your mind :P"


The King of Kreme

"In an interview that was part of the flirt-and-flash publicity for her film Eyes Wide Shut, Nicole Kidman confessed that while Tom is wonderful, what really makes her weak in the knees comes from Ivy Avenue: doughnuts.

Krispy Kreme doughnuts.

Hot Krispy Kreme doughnuts.

The glaze so delicate that it melts under your fingers as you pick up a Krispy Kreme. The doughnuts so airy that lifting one without denting it is impossible. The mood in a Krispy Kreme store so evocative, you can't enter without smiling.

All 150 Krispy Kreme stores make their doughnuts out in the open, where you can watch. An orderly parade of doughnuts floats through the fryer, flipping over automatically halfway through the cooking process. Then a conveyor whisks the doughnuts out of the hot shortening and into a glistening cascade of glaze.

These are not donuts. They're doughnuts."


Smart news about pot

"500-plus economists can't wrong. Right? Seems a slew of them have finally decided what most of us have known for a long time: that pot prohibition "has minimal benefits and may itself cause substantial harm."

A report just released by visiting BU economics professor Dr. Jeffrey Miron and endorsed by more than 500 of his peers offers yet another commonsense critique of current marijuana policy. This time, the issue is framed in terms — dollars and cents — that even conservatives can understand. Some of them, including Nobel Prize-winner Dr. Milton Friedman, have seen the light. Will the Bush administration? Don't count on it.

In The Budgetary Implications of Marijuana Prohibition, Miron finds that by instituting a system of regulation and taxation for pot similar to those in place for alcohol and tobacco, the money that would be saved in expenditures and gained in tax revenue is considerable: between $10 billion and $14 billion annually. That's real money that could be used to address real problems like gaps in homeland security, failing schools, and growing budget deficits. If it might help change GOP minds about our nonsensical drug laws, we suppose it could even fund tax cuts.

... Still, he says, "I think the people running drug policy in the present administration are ideologues who aren't going to be changed by anything. If Jesus came down from heaven and told them to rethink our marijuana laws, they'd say he was bought off by the drug legalizers.""


A letter to Breadtalk

"dear breadtalk,

... i also realized that on some of your confectionary, you used pork floss or ham or any other similar product. being a muslim myself, i find that the use of such ingredients prevented me from being able to appreciate such confectionary.

if only one day, breadtalk will have their outlets catering for just about everyone. including people such as myself, who have to abstain from eating pork/ham products due to our religion.

will i get to see that day soon?"


A: i think that if you don't eat pork, it's a choice that you make due to religious reasons, and one can't expect everyone else around you to accomodate that. i don't eat beef, and neither do a lot of buddhists/hindus. a lot of buddhists/hindus also don't eat meat, period (my husband for example, is a vegetarian). are we then to act sad and persecuted when shops choose to serve meat and beef for those that do? isn't that narrowing the choices for most of the population that would prefer to eat meat? i understand it's annoying, but being a Singaporean, you have to realize that sometimes you have to tolerate those that aren't like you. even those that choose to sell pork products.

B: well, what if i like eating pork, and there are alot of customers like me? the economic benefits of catering to customers like me is greater than catering to the muslim customers. i would be rather unhappy if breadtalk stopped serving something i liked =/

C: if you really want to be anal on exactness, Indonesian and Malaysian (predominantly Muslim countries) muslims do not bother so much about whether the food is certified halal or not, as long as the food is cooked using cleaned crockery (meaning that the pots, etc, have to be washed, and no pork lard/oil, etc is left on it), and there is no pork in the food.

D: "Pork floss buns happen to be (or used to be) one of their hottest items. By eliminating pork floss buns, they lose business (likely) but gains the potential (possibly) of getting more Muslim customers."

The surge in sales in the likelihood that they turn halal will most likely be temporary. For many (like me), boutique bakeries were but a novelty. I haven't patronised any of these minimalist bakeries in a while, and I'm sure there are many others like me. I'm sure it'll be the same for many Muslims in the event Breadtalk turn halal.

You're the first person to identify that Pork Floss Buns are their hottest item. This point is a crucial qualifier. You can't take away the defining trait of a bakery and expect business to self-sustain.

Why would Breadtalk want to destroy a stable base of loyal customers by removing the hottest item from their shelves.

E: Don't get me wrong. I am all for multi-racial co-existence and integration, and understanding. I empathise with not just Muslims, but all peoples whose culture, religion, life choices, or whatever restrict them from eating certain food, but to be honest, I did not choose to be an all-encompassing eater to have my choices artificially restricted by those who aren't. gssg is right: it's not that we are not offering Halal food choices, but this should not be at the expense of the non-Halal eaters as well. Wouldn't that be forcing the all-eaters to be effectively Halal eaters as well?

If the moment an establishment becomes successful it has to go Halal to accommodate Muslim concerns, the Jewish community will start asking for all food to be Kosher, the Vegetarians for non-meat and dairy products, and so on until it becomes economically unviable to sustain so many separate preparation methods, or we all end up eating astronaut food. And then what happens when like in the Sikh vs Halal problem, two dietary demands cannot co-exist? Who should prevail? [Ed: Well, I don't think she was raising the spectre of racial/religious sensitivity, but was just musing that perhaps Breadtalk could cater for her, so.]
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