This is generally regarded as the beginning of the Christmas story in Western Christianity. Caesar Augustus, needing to revamp the Roman budget to maintain his supply of bread and circuses, sent out this emergency decree. I think he used Facebook, but this is an unconfirmed rumor.
Take a generous helping of random opinions from diplomats around the world. To prepare this, send reasonably competent individuals to each country and marinate them in the local cultures for a few months. Be careful not to let them sit too long in the marinade or the local spices may overpower the flavor.
The pilgrims were happy and thankful in 1637 that America had not killed them all. The Indians were happy and thankful that the pilgrims had not killed them all (yet). They survived. As a tribute to their survival, Americans traditionally eat themselves into oblivion on this holiday.
And not everyone will survive.
As if this were not enough proof that PR and positioning preparation were not of vital importance, I also proved to myself the old adage that the doctor is always his own worst patient. In my case, the spin-doctor.
The ugly truth is that I have been here for nearly a decade and communicate like a Balinese coconut-picker landed suddenly in the middle of a Parisian dinner party. In the court of Louis XVI.
Of a Tuesday afternoon.
The following started out as a letter to a good friend who gave me his mountain bike before absconding to the jungles of South America, but in the meantime has taken on wider significance for me.
The Serbian prime minister told AmCham this last week, so it MUST be true. Maybe the post-crisis period started on that morning and I was just too sleepy to notice.
Up until recently, we had only been in the POST-TRANSITION. We would use the word post-transition because it would indicate that there is still a little clutter lying around in the corners from the transition period. In fact, until it is all clear up, we might say that we are actually still in the transition but we have been so many years in transit that post-transition feels better. Maybe this is the pre-post-transition. Likewise the crisis. Pre-post-pre-crisis.
Thusly do I follow in rather oddly assorted footsteps by my Tube-imposed sequestration here in Kew during the thirty-six hour long 24 hour strike of the London Underground. I do not complain; there are worse places to be sequestered (and let us not reopen the file on Slavonski Brod...).
The thing is about rumors: all you need is the vaguest and most oblique insinuation of something for it to begin passing along great unseen chains of whispers and embellishments until everyone directly interested and indirectly uninterested - and some people quite frankly exasperated - suddenly knows. It passes into common knowledge. And suddenly, in the blink of an eye, the best rumors are then apotheosized into the greatest of all possible forms of human knowledge.
They become the TRUTH.