Since I lambasted the NY Times a couple of days ago, I feel I should present the other side of the coin. Sometimes they show me things I would probably never have known about and am glad to have discovered. Herewith two examples from the Sunday “Arts and Leisure” section.

Vicki Goldberg presents the photographer Josef Koudelka, who’s led an amazing life, both complicated (“Never married, he has three children by three women of different nationalities. He has helped support all three children, he said, and has remained in touch with them.”) and simple (“I have two shirts…. I have one trousers for one year, one shoes for one year, one jacket for two years, two socks, and for travel a good sleeping bag.”). He did a series of photographs of Gypsies:

The Gypsy pictures are dark, brooding, disjunctive, tinged with tenderness and sorrow. Years later, he said, he met some Gypsies on a pilgrimage and told them he’d done a book on their people: ” ‘We know,’ they said. `We call you Iconar. We have the book. It’s been cut apart and put in a chapel. We pray for the people in them.’ “

And Christopher Hall describes working on a project to build a 13th-century castle in a remote area of Burgundy (Treigny, in Puisaye, for those keeping score at home; the Times, uncharacteristically, doesn’t supply a map). They’re using medieval tools and techniques and even wearing medieval clothes (barring safety glasses). I don’t know about you, but that sounds like a great way to spend my summer vacation, if I still had a summer vacation.

There’s also a good piece by Norimitsu Onishi on the use and misuse of statistics, but I posted that on MetaFilter (where it sank without a trace).


  1. Mr. Norimitu Onishi, I’m sorry for interfering in this site but something had force me to visited your site so that I can find your email or talk to you a little a bit about what I have found in the articles you wrote on; “Sudan Government Tops List of Those Causing Agony for Oil” on October 13, 2001. When I visited the web site I mention above, I found my Aunt’s name Nyeguar Dobuol whom you perhaps interview or talk to her face to face in Sudan, Nhiadiu Village. I am actually from sudan and I came to U.S. in 2000 as Lost Boy of Sudan, and I never met my family for nearly 15 years. It was very paintful emotional news I read in the articles you wrote about suffering and I found it by coincident or God has made it possible to hear some news about my family. Please, I do believed that the woman you interview or mention in the articles is my Aunt, This is very important news to me and I do need some information if possible, As you mention that her four daughter have kidnapped. Please help me, I just want to know how you met her and where you found her before the time you posted the articles. So here is my Phone number and email address, And if you are not the right person I contact, Please pass this information to any of New York Time journalist by name: Norimitu Onishi. He is the one whom have posted the article I found my Aunt On it. So here is my address and phone number and my name is;
    Kong Dual Dobual from Sudan, Bentiu (Nhiadiu
    village). My aunt name is Nyeguar Dobual.
    home phone: 701-277-0435
    address: 4936 21st Ave Sw Fargo, ND 58103
    Email Address.
    School Address: 7500 University Drive Bismarck, 58504 University of Mary.

  2. Sasha Crow says

    I may be mistaken in approaching this site for an email contact for Norimitsu Onishi. If so, please accept my apologies.
    My reason for contacting Mr. Onishi is in regards to his article on the plight of the three returned Japanese humanitarian activists who were kidnapped in Iraq. I also faced severe criticism from my government and community when I returned from Iaq last year after serving there as a “human shield” volunteer. I wish to write to these three courageous individuals in support. I am wondering if you have either email or physical addresses for them. If so, I would very much appreciate if you can send them to me.
    Thank you so much for your time and consideration.
    Sasha Crow

  3. I have no contact information for Mr. Onishi. You have to write to him c/o the Times.

  4. This is one of the oddest LH threads ever.

  5. Both complicated, and simple…

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