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About DiegoDiego

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  1. Samantha Stosur too. I don't think that any players are seriously accusing them of being men, they're accusing them of being more efficient drug takers than them. Tennis has a rampant drug problem and are fine with it. Serena Williams was tested out of competition only once in a two year period and on that occasion locked herself in a panic room and said she thought the testers were burglars. Then you have things like Wozniacki overcoming arthritis simply by "learning to tune in to the rhythms of my body". Come off it. Fittingly for this thread, there very much is a conspiracy within the top levels of tennis to hide performance enhancing drug use by top players.
  2. On the subject of Sportsound females, I thought Julie Fleeting was very good yesterday. It was my first time listening to her. She had good tactical analysis, knowledge of the players and a good radio voice. A refreshing lack of clichés from her, too.
  3. Am I missing something? What's strange about going to see your family now and again?
  4. I somewhat disagree with you. The most significant settlements have rarely been coastal. Mesopotamia, Persia, inland China and India and the upstream Nile were the sites of the largest cities around the 2000 BC mark. Most of the capitals were on elevated ground for obvious reasons. There probably is a lot underwater (e.g. Doggerland) , and if the technology and money is there we're quite likely to find some interesting stuff, but the most important sites have always been inland.
  5. The affect that the mentality of any team's fanbase has on results, positive or negative is miniscule.
  6. Recent reads: Lanark - Alasdair Gray An incredible piece of work. One of those which you think "what sort of person could come up with this?". The book has four parts, two detail the life of an eccentric artist and two describe a journey through the sort of dystopian otherworld you'd expect to find if Orwell and Dali collaborated. Gray doesn't always manage to pull it off, and it's tough reading at times due to the bizarre nature of what he's attempting to describe, but parts are brilliant. Perhaps a little overambitious 7/10. Italo Calvino - If on a Winter's Night a Traveller More nonsense, again overambitious and not quite pulling it off. Written in the second person, it starts off talking about how you bought the book you're currently reading. Then it has the first chapter of the actual book. After reading some of the second chapter you realise it's a completely different story, so then it's back to the second person detailing your trip back to the bookshop to return it for the correct book. But it's again a different book altogether! So it goes on, alternating between the reader's quest to get to the bottom of the fake book nonsense and first chapters of ten different books of ten different genres. It's a great concept and some of the first chapters are great, but I only read it to the end as it was my last English-language book. He's clearly a gifted writer, and I'd give him another shot but... 4/10 Jane Austen - Persuasion Brilliant. You know how it's going to end from quite early on, but it's excellently written. You already know if this book would interest you, so I'll just say that it's one of her best 9/10. Pachinko - Min Jin Lee A multi-generational look at a Korean family who spend most of their life in Japan. Spanning the Japanese colonisation and WWII up to the eighties, it's a very useful primer on the lives of Koreans in Japan. Fitting eighty years into 500 pages is a tough task though and you're just getting snippets and deaths of major characters are mentioned in passing. It's quite a mixed story, engaging at times, but the quick pace of time means you don't really care for any of the characters. The central character is by far the least interesting, just a wire form for the more colourful characters to be draped around. The book got rave reviews and finished top of a few year end lists but I imagine more for the topic than the contents. That said it's a pretty easy, often engaging read. 6/10. Javier Marias - Thus Bad Begins A twenty-three year old gets a job assisting a famous Spanish film director, getting entangled with his personal and family life. The main theme of the book is the balance between forgiveness and justice, seen through the twin lenses of the horrors of the Spanish Civil War and a wife's deceit. It's a tough book to read at times: hundred word sentences, two page paragraphs and endless analysis of people's actions to the point where one short conversation takes place over three chapters. Marias is clearly a very accomplished writer and it's easy to see why he's touted for the Nobel. At first I thought the book was pretty dire, but by the end I really enjoyed it. Not for everyone, but 8/10 Leo Tolstoy - The Kreutzer Sonata and Other Stories It's Leo fucking Tolstoy. 10/10 Ryunsuke Akutagawa - Rashomon and Other Stories A collection of eighteen short stories by the early 20th century Japanese writer. The stories are grouped together, so the tragi-comedies are in one section, the retellings of folk tales are in another, and so on. It is, of course, a mixed bunch. However, the final section consists of his autobiographical stories and these are very good indeed, especially having read the highlights of his life's work beforehand. One of these "The Life of a Stupid Man" is an truly incredible work, almost poetic as he describes 54 scenes from his life. The final story in the book ends mid-story with (something like, I don't have it to hand) "No, this is all too much. I don't have the energy to carry on. Why can't somebody just strangle me in my sleep?" Needless to say, he committed suicide, his last words being "I have a strange sense of unease about the future". 10/10 for the highs, some of the stories are 4/10 quality though.
  7. From a demographic and economic perspective, why are the Faroes so much more successful than the Hebrides? In 1851 the Hebrides had ten times the population of the Faroes, but recently the Faroes have overtaken the Hebrides. The Faroese economy is massively dependent on fishing, but they have very low unemployment and even make loans to other countries. Is it simply that the Hebridean fishing industry is uncompetitive? And if so, why and what can be done about it? Or should we just start a war over Rockall?
  8. The Turkish Super Lig have decided to ignore relegation this season, as in the one which finished the other day. It's a twenty-one team league for next season.
  9. To be fair, I don't know what your particular journey is and I do think that public transport should be improved in Scotland (£20 per hour on a train is too much in my opinion), but a lot of people don't realise that most other countries aren't much better. Where I lived in (a very rich part of) Italy my trip into the city was probably the equivalent of Stirling to Perth. There were no trains on a Sunday and during the week there was only one bus or train between 1pm and 5pm. The final trip back was at 9.10pm. Columbus is the state capital of Ohio, has a population of nearly a million and doesn't even have a train station! When I lived in Denmark the expensive journey to Copenhagen took three times longer than by car, involving filthy rolling stock covered in graffiti. They have no bus network other than between major cities. Those are three countries with fairly comparable GDP to the UK and I think we've got the better deal. Of course some countries have better functioning public transport than us, but we've still a lot to be thankful for.
  10. When I said I wanted Thistle to be able to compete with the Old Firm I didn't mean like this. What a fucking embarrassment of a statement.
  11. Steady on, perhaps some of the lunatic wallopers on Facebook said that but I can't remember a single Jags fan on here claiming that.
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