Sunday, October 11, 2015

The features of the Weekend Wall Street Journal

Every Saturday, a challenge is to remember to pick up a Weekend Wall Street Journal before they are sold out.  It's a well written and entertaining newspaper, not necessarily due to the business news but due to the many feature stories in various sections on weekends.  This week was no exception.

The Review section leads with the article "America's Fading Footprint", a look at the erosion of U.S. influence in the Middle East in recent years.  With the move of Russia into Syria, the role of Iran fighting ISIS in Iraq, and the coalition led by Saudi Arabia to challenge the Houthis in Yemen, this is a timely piece.  While not definitive and being full of quotes from "experts" not known, this overview of the diminished U.S. role is thought provoking and informative.  A book review of "The Rise of Germany", with the article titled "The Follies of 1940", describes yet another another book about the events leading up to war, supposedly an additive book about a historical period read about here often. A profile of Ken Jeong, doctor turned Hollywood comedic actor unknown here, was an entertaining quick read.

The Off Duty section high points this week were, from this perspective, two food articles.  Not going out to restaurants often or traveling at the moment, reading about food is maybe the next best thing, although not close to the real thing.  "A Cutlet Above" is about Milan's cotoletta, which has many variations.  A seemingly reasonable facsimile is available from nearby Nick and Pedro's, with personal delivery from either Victor or Pedro.  Reading this article suggests that actual Milan versions are far superior which, clue, of course they are.  "Bangers and Mashup" is primarily a look at the traditional English breakfast.  What a treat that can be.  In the late 1980's, there was a period of four years during which working for a bank in Corporate Training, then Strategic Planning, and finally Investor Relations departments led to almost quarterly trips to London.  The not too expensive corporate standby hotel, name not remembered, was northwest of Marble Arch, several blocks beyond the park and into a residential neighborhood. It was a perfectly fine hotel, and travels there were almost always alone, a fact that was enjoyed.  Heading down to a major meal each morning there was something to get out of bed early for, the comfort food breakfast with newspapers at hand and constant service.

The Sports section offers an unusually good feature about Zack Greinke, the Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher who took on the Mets last night.  Watching only a few middle innings of the game was a chance to see him for the first time and watch him compile his gaudy statistics.  The article was about his game preparation and his unique role in positioning all fielders when he pitches.  For a baseball story it was interesting, and in the Wall Street Journal?

The Journal is missed in print form most days during the week, but the weekend edition is one to hold and fold.


Postscript:  During my career, there were many trips to London.  Once responsibilities increased, there was rarely a time when a relaxed breakfast was an option.  Dinners with investors and early morning meetings at company offices ended that practice, but those late '80's times are a good memory.

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