Mental is madder than madcap. I heard one critic sniff, "It's kind of broad" — and, Your Honor, the defense agrees! But if broad means "unsubtle," it doesn't have to mean "unreal." Mental makes most other movies seem boringly, misleadingly sane.
Originally published on Tue April 9, 2013 11:24 am
An audio recording has surfaced of Sen. Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., and some of his campaign aides seeming to discuss whether they would use actress Ashley Judd's past bouts with depression against her if she challenged McConnell in 2014.
Pakistani vendors in Lahore fix posters of candidates taking part in the upcoming May parliamentary elections. Pakistani officials have provoked both laughter and criticism in recent days as they vetted potential candidates in the country's upcoming national elections with questions that veered between the controversial and the bizarre.
Credit B.K. Bangash / AP
Mussarat Shaheen, Pakistan's dancer-actress turned politician, addresses her supporters in Islamabad in 2000. Better known for provocative moves than her piety, she recently rattled off a series of verses from the Quran when quizzed by an official.
Credit Banaras Khan / AFP/Getty Images
Pakistanis in Quetta protest against former military ruler Pervez Musharraf on March 24, the day Musharraf returned home after more than four years in exile. But his attempt to stand in upcoming elections is facing multiple legal challenges.
Originally published on Tue April 9, 2013 11:05 am
The culling of candidates in the run-up to Pakistan's May 11 election is providing the country some badly needed levity.
The "Pakistani Inquisition," as it's been dubbed, has election commission officials grilling office-seekers on their Islamic bona fides.
Many have stumbled badly, only to be disqualified.
But not Mussarat Shaheen, who performed impeccably. The former dancer — fabled for her Pushto films — was asked by an official in the city of Dera Ismail Khan to recite a verse of the Holy Quran, to test her mettle as a candidate for the National Assembly.
Beer lovers might be alarmed to hear that beer can pick up small amounts of arsenic as it's filtered to be sparkly clear.
But researchers in Germany reported Sunday that they've found arsenic in hundreds of samples of beer, some at levels more than twice that allowed in drinking water.
When we checked in with experts about arsenic and the filtering process, which is also widely used in the wine industry, they weren't too surprised. That's because the filtering agent in question, diatomaceous earth, is a mined natural product that contains iron and other metals.
Brian Kimberling's debut novel, Snapper, is a lovely, loose-limbed collection of stories about an aimless ornithologist named Nate, who as the book opens is possessed of a glitter-covered pickup truck and a massive (somewhat requited) crush on redheaded dream girl Lola. Nate and his friends wander toward marriage and maturity over the course of 13 linked stories — encountering angry snapping turtles, bald eagles and mystic mechanics along the way.
Meg Wolitzer's fat, talky new novel begins in 1974 at an arts camp in the Berkshires where six teenagers sit around in a teepee smoking pot and discussing Gunter Grass. Yes, Gunter Grass, which gives you an idea of the kind of kids Wolitzer is writing about: smart, privileged, pretentious.
Originally published on Tue April 9, 2013 11:50 am
My earliest memory of code switching is at Pizza Hut, back when Pizza Huts were sit-down restaurants with salad bars and garlic bread. (Like any daughter of immigrants, most of my memories involve food.) My mom and dad would speak with the waiters in English, ordering our pan-crust pizzas and Pepsi products, but we used Mandarin at the table. Our Mandarin was our secret code.
Good morning, I'm David Greene. Yesterday, a Twitter hashtag threw fans of Cher into a panic. It read: #nowthatcherisdead - all one word - referring to the late British leader. But many read it as "now that Cher is dead."
One fan of the singer tweeted: I note the hashtag #nowthatcherisdead is trending. I can't confirm anywhere that Cher is dead - leading other users to tweet advice such as why hashtags need spaces.
With Louisville's victory over Michigan last night to win the NCAA tournament, it's time to make good on some promises. Louisville players have suggestions for their coach, Rick Pitino, who pledged to get a tattoo if they won. Player Shane Bohannon thinks his name should be tattooed on Pitino's body. Another player suggests the lower back is the best location. Pitino's family seems too stunned to make suggestions. One son said, he would have killed us if we got a tattoo.