Tag: Tres Loco

Uruguay is a Land of Contrasts

As Brian Kevin observes, visitors can expect to see flashy import sedans right alongside donkey-drawn rickshaws. !Muy contrastado!

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‘127 Hours’ Fan Rescued in Canyonlands National Park

Move over, McCandless pilgrims: With the success of last year’s 127 Hours, there just might be a new breed of death-defying travel movie fans on the block. The Guardian reports that a solo hiker was attempting to retrace Aron Ralston’s route through Little Blue John Canyon when he fell and broke his leg. The hiker, Amos Richards, hadn’t told anyone where he was going—he crawled in search of help for four days before being found by park rangers who’d noticed his abandoned campsite. Richards was treated at a hospital and has, thankfully, been released with all four limbs still attached. (Via Gawker)


NYT on Luca Spaghetti’s ‘Eat, Pray, Love’ Spin-off Memoir: ‘Pasta, Pasta, Pasta!’

Who is Luca Spaghetti? In case you’ve forgotten, he’s one of the dreamy Italian men who shows Elizabeth Gilbert around town during the Roman section of her bestselling memoir. He’s also, now, an author—his own memoir, Un Amico Italiano: Eat, Pray, Love in Rome, was released this spring, and the New York Times had a really funny gem of a review.

Here’s Sam Anderson:

It has a strange integrity: the purity of an actual, unremarkable guy telling his actual, (mostly) unremarkable story. Aside from a few Gilbertesque cutesy touches (“That Marlboro tasted a lot like life”), there’s no pretense of educating humanity or saving a soul or discovering a self. It’s just: Hey world, this crazy thing happened where someone put me in a book—so here’s my story! Pasta, pasta, pasta! Spaghetti’s only ulterior motive is right on the surface: he hopes the memoir will make James Taylor, the American folk musician he reveres above all other humans, notice him.

I count myself among the legions of EPL fans, but even as a cheerleader I can’t help thinking this is all getting a bit surreal.


‘On the Road’ Meets ‘On the Bro’d’

An amusing and crude Tumblr mashes up Kerouac’s classic. The opening lines of On the Bro’d:

I first met Dean not long after Tryscha and I hooked up. I had just gotten over a wicked fucking hangover that I won’t bother to talk about, except that it had something to do with a six-foot-five douchebag and a beer bong. With the coming of Dean Moriarty began the part of my life you could call my life on the bro’d. Before that I’d often dreamed of going West to see hot LA actress chicks and try In N’ Out burgers, always vaguely planning and never taking off. Dean is the perfect bro for the road because he knows how to fucking party.

And the mad ones? You’ll now find them trolling Buffalo Wild Wings:

[T]he only bros for me are the awesome ones, the ones who are mad to chug, mad to party, mad to bone, mad to get hammered, desirous of all the chicks at Buffalo Wild Wings, the ones who never turn down a Bud Light Lime, but chug, chug, chug like fucking awesome players exploding like spiders across an Ed Hardy shirt and in the middle you see the silver skull pop and everybody goes “Awww!”

(Via @thebookslut)


California’s ‘Kazakh-Land’: Central Asian Theme Park or Stunt?

Over at Registan, Michael Hancock investigates Kazakh-Land, a theme park in southern California. Hancock, though, doubts whether the place actually exists, beyond its snazzy website:

Ladies and Gentlemen, I give you Kazakh-Land!  Situated near sunny Malibu, California, it offers something for everyone, from romantic folk-art displays to retirement-style weekend getaways. The website is plenty nice and the word on the inter-tubes [up to this point] is that it’s the real deal. However, there is a lot of suspicious English (especially on the guestbook and caretaker pages) that smells of Russian translation. Like some bad Borat joke, Russian-language descriptions of the theme park name-drop Pamela Anderson and Angelina Jolie. It’s not their fault, of course - these descriptions come off the site’s own guestbook, which reads like a finely translated and prepared proof-of-concept brochure. In other words, I’m skeptical whether any of these people are real.

The rest of the post includes some speculation about the source of the park’s photos (Hollywood movie sets) and the reason (money laundering, real estate concerns) for the hoax. I suppose we also have to consider the possibility that there’s another Borat project in the works? (Via The Atlantic Wire)


Las Vegas Cowers at ‘Death Ray’

It singes hair! It melts plastic cups! It inspires funny leads on blogs!

The “Vdara Death Ray,” as it’s known to some pool employees at the Vdara Hotel & Spa at the Las Vegas CityCenter, is apparently a result of the design of the building. The sun reflects off one of the hotel’s towers in a way that targets a section of the hotel’s pool area with extreme temperatures for short periods of time. From the Las Vegas Review-Journal:

Viewed from above, the Vdara tower resembles a crescent. The crescent’s southern-facing side is concave. There is no tall building farther south to block the sun’s hot afternoon rays, so Vdara receives the full brunt. Its pool lies at the center of this southern-facing wall, on top of a low-rise building that is three stories tall.

How hot is the “Death Ray”? If it can melt plastic cups, as reported, it’s pretty hot. According to the Review-Journal, plastic cups melt at around 160 degrees.


Paparazzi Fishing at the Baggage Claim

The Los Angeles Times covers the work habits of celebrity photographers who camp out at LAX:

If tips are scarce, photographers make their own luck by “fishing”—strolling the terminal baggage claims and entrances for shots. Airport paparazzi scour crowds less for actual famous people than for signs that actual famous people are about to appear. A shiny black Escalade with tinted windows. A muscle-bound man with an earpiece. And, above all, the “star greeter,” hired by movie studios and other companies to whisk VIPs through lines at the airport. Airport photographers tend to memorize the greeters’ faces, walks, wardrobes and client lists.


Lost Luggage Mishap Helps Sink Drug Ring

Twenty-two people have been charged with conspiring to shift cocaine from California to Pennsylvania by domestic air carrier—and it looks like a misdirected luggage incident may have helped bring them down. From the AP:

Ruben Mitchell, of Stockton, Calif., lost track of more than 40 pounds of cocaine in a misdirected piece of luggage during a Pittsburgh-bound Southwest Airlines Inc. flight last year, prosecutors said.

Mitchell had the drugs in a carry-on bag when he boarded the flight on Feb. 19, 2009, but a flight attendant put the bag in the plane’s cargo hold because it wouldn’t fit in an overhead luggage compartment, they said. The bag then was mistakenly unloaded during a layover in Las Vegas, and Mitchell later filed a lost-baggage claim for it after arriving in Pittsburgh, they said.

What’s next? Bank robbers’ getaway foiled by tarmac stranding? Counterfeiters snared by $7 blanket fee?


Meet the SkyRider, the Tiniest Airplane Seat Yet

Wired has the scoop on the SkyRider, a new “saddle-style” design that debuts next week at an aircraft interiors conference. This latest innovation shaves up to ten inches off each row. Blogger Charlie Sorrel asks: “Is it one step closer to just drugging us and piling us onto shelves like suitcases, or a legitimate next-step for cheap air-travel?”


Do You Travel With a Teddy Bear?

According to a recent Travelodge survey, at least some of you do. The survey found that 25% of adult men bring stuffed animals with them when they travel for business. “I travel enough that it’s a nice reminder of home,” said one respondent.

I’d like to offer some snark here, but I’d be a hypocrite if I did. My bear doesn’t come on short-haul trips, but she has been on longer visits to Malaysia, the U.K., Barbados and New York City. So there.


China’s 10-Day Traffic Jam, in Photos

NPR has a sequence of remarkable photos from the ongoing jam, which stretches for more than 60 miles. Hat tip to Boing Boing’s Maggie Koerth-Baker, who speculates about how the AP photographers managed to make it to and from the scene: “I’m imagining a dirt bike was involved.”


Your Flight Attendant Jokes Do Not Amuse JetBlue

The airline’s been objecting to cracks about Steven Slater’s infamous emergency chute escapade via its official Twitter account. Of course, this only inspires the tweeting jokers to new heights; here’s comedian Andy Borowitz’s response: “At @JetBlue you have to pay $5 extra for a sense of humor. Exact change, please.”

Meanwhile, the New York Times has unearthed the 1947 story of a Bronx bus driver who got fed up with his job—and took his rig on a 1,300-mile joy ride. That sounds even better than a trip down the inflatable slide, no?


Chinese Developers to Recreate Salvador Dalí‘s Hometown

Xiamen Bay is the new Costa Brava! From the Guardian:

Sources at the company said they had found a spot that was geographically similar to Cadaqués, with its gently sloping hills and protected bay. “Building work will start in September or October,” a spokesman said.

More than 100 acres of land will be used to build a near replica with a capacity to house some 15,000 Chinese holidaymakers who want to enjoy the Costa Brava experience without having to travel 6,500 miles.

The Chinese version will not have the sparkling Mediterranean, the madness-inducing Tramontana wind or as many jellyfish as Cadaqués, but the promoters say they will try to get as close to possible to the real thing.

The developers are following in the footsteps of Lyon in the desert and Thames Town outside of Shanghai, among other places.

Dali would surely approve. As the Guardian notes, “One of his favourite money-making habits was to sign, and sell-off, blank sheets of paper for prints and lithographs. As a result, he is one of the most frequently copied and forged artists in the world.”


JetBlue Flight Attendant Flees Plane Via Emergency Chute

The New York Times City Room blog has the details on today’s drama on the tarmac at JFK:

One passenger got out of his seat to fetch his belongings from the overhead compartment before the crew had given permission. Mr. Slater instructed the man to remain seated. The passenger defied him. Mr. Slater approached and reached the passenger just as he pulled down his luggage, which struck Mr. Slater in the head.

Mr. Slater asked for an apology. The passenger instead cursed at him. Mr. Slater got on the plane’s public address system and cursed out all aboard. Then he activated the inflatable evacuation slide at service exit R1, launched himself off the plane, an Embraer 190, ran to the employee parking lot and left the airport in a car he had parked there.

And then the puns began. NYT commenter Dave Ryan chimed in just 26 minutes after the story went live: “In this case, I’m hoping that the authorities just let it slide…”

Gawker’s always-reliable readers followed up with several more: “Yeah, the FAA is never gonna let this slide.” “Airplane security is a very slippery slope.” “Sounds like he blew his slid.”


Suitcase Stickers: Guaranteed to Get You Pulled Aside at Airport Security

TheCheeky.com is selling these adhesive troublemakers—just $25 for a set of four. Enjoy. (Via Boing Boing)


Tourists in Heat

Tourists in Heat iStockPhoto

Ten tips for how to stay cool while traveling in an increasingly hot planet. (#2: Choose countries with cold soup.)

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How Do You Maintain an ATM in Antarctica?

Inquiring minds at Needcoffee wondered. A Vice President at Wells Fargo, which operates the bank machine at McMurdo, offers a detailed and weirdly fascinating answer. (Via Kottke)


A ‘White Guy in a Tie’ in Beijing

The Atlantic has a dispatch from a Beijing expat with an unusual sideline: fake American businessman-for-hire. From the post:

Six of us met at the Beijing airport, where Jake briefed us on the details. We were supposedly representing a California-based company that was building a facility in Dongying. Our responsibilities would include making daily trips to the construction site, attending a ribbon-cutting ceremony, and hobnobbing. During the ceremony, one of us would have to give a speech as the company’s director. That duty fell to my friend Ernie, who, in his late 30s, was the oldest of our group. His business cards had already been made.


London Mayor: ‘Harry Potter is Not American’

Universal Orlando’s latest theme park creation, The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, opens next week—and London Mayor Boris Johnson will definitely not be attending any ribbon-cutting ceremonies. Strong words from the Mayor:

I deeply and bitterly resent that Orlando is about to become the official place of pilgrimage for every Harry Potter fan on earth… Because the fact is that Harry Potter is not American. He is British. Where is Diagon Alley, where they buy wands and stuff? It is in London, and if you want to get into the Ministry of Magic you disappear down a London telephone box. The train for Hogwarts goes from King’s Cross, not Grand Central Station.

Don’t worry, London. I’m sure there are still plenty of Potter fans that will want to visit the, er, not-quite-real thing. (Via The Book Bench)


‘When Life Gives You Volcanoes, Make Magazines’

Sure, the volcanic ash cloud may have done a number on the airline industry, but it looks like it could give publishing a wee boost—there’s a volcano strandee magazine in the works. (Via Kottke)