Any Flaggers in Kurdistan?

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Any Flaggers in Kurdistan?

Postby Dr. V » Thu Jan 24, 2013 9:59 pm

and if so do you fancy a cup of tea sometime soon?

And no before you all start - I don't want to know how to get there or what to do when I get there as its all pretty much sewn up in - get on plane, get off plane, get picked up go to hotel in organised car, attend conference dinner, sleep, breakfast, speak, lunch, speak, host a panel, attend conference dinner, go on organised sightseeing trip, sleep. Breakfast, speak, lunch, speak, attend conference dinner, Breakfast, organised trip to local market, get in car, go to airport get on plane home. Which is fine by me as it requires minimum effort and planning which are not my strong points!

I'm also in Greece, Kuwait, KSA and Egypt in the next month or two if anyone is around.

And on the subject of tea WTF is this picture about....

Image
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Re: Any Flaggers in Kurdistan?

Postby svizzerams » Fri Jan 25, 2013 12:33 am

vlindsay wrote:and if so do you fancy a cup of tea sometime soon?

And no before you all start - I don't want to know how to get there or what to do when I get there as its all pretty much sewn up in - get on plane, get off plane, get picked up go to hotel in organised car, attend conference dinner, sleep, breakfast, speak, lunch, speak, host a panel, attend conference dinner, go on organised sightseeing trip, sleep. Breakfast, speak, lunch, speak, attend conference dinner, Breakfast, organised trip to local market, get in car, go to airport get on plane home. Which is fine by me as it requires minimum effort and planning which are not my strong points!

I'm also in Greece, Kuwait, KSA and Egypt in the next month or two if anyone is around.

And on the subject of tea WTF is this picture about....

Image


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Re: Any Flaggers in Kurdistan?

Postby nowonmai » Fri Jan 25, 2013 1:51 am

Academics are second only to MPs in the troughing stakes.
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Re: Any Flaggers in Kurdistan?

Postby coldharvest » Fri Jan 25, 2013 5:22 am

nowonmai wrote:Academics are second only to MPs in the troughing stakes.

Are you trying to be nice?
Academics have been at the trough for far longer than MP's, Academics are just better liars.
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Re: Any Flaggers in Kurdistan?

Postby nowonmai » Fri Jan 25, 2013 10:13 pm

coldharvest wrote:
nowonmai wrote:Academics are second only to MPs in the troughing stakes.

Are you trying to be nice?
Academics have been at the trough for far longer than MP's, Academics are just better liars.


I'd characterise it more as pity than niceness.
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Re: Any Flaggers in Kurdistan?

Postby Farmdog » Sat Jan 26, 2013 10:53 pm

Nope, but in sad news I heard the Iraqi battalion commander I worked with was killed on his way to Mosul from Al Hatra. I also heard he killed our BN S2, with a Dishka. The Arab Battalion in Al Hatra has been replaced by a Kurdish Battalion. The fighting between the Al Jaburi and Al Bahmadi has stopped because the Kurds will smack them both down with out thinking twice. Have a nice trip, don't go south of Al Hatra (Jaguar South and North).
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Re: Any Flaggers in Kurdistan?

Postby Farmdog » Sat Jan 26, 2013 10:55 pm

Oh yeah, the old rule "If you didn't drop it, don't pick it up" is still in effect.
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Re: Any Flaggers in Kurdistan?

Postby Dr. V » Sun Jan 27, 2013 10:21 am

Actually the 'fee' doesn't even start to cover the actual costs let alone my time. Its only financially doable because I already have things like public indemnity and liability insurance in place for the Afghanistan project I work on and even then its working out at about £37.50 a day or approximately £2.88 an hour which is way below the minimum wage let alone what I'm normally get out of bed for *flicks hair in supermodelesque style*.

I'm not sure that conference dinners can ever be described as a jollie - the last one I sat though lasted 5 hours and involved an academic telling me everything I never wanted to know about salted fish pits in Pompei circa 500 years before Mt Etna.

On the flip side it was kinda hard to turn down as Northern Iraq is a bit of a busman's holiday.

Farmdog wrote:Oh yeah, the old rule "If you didn't drop it, don't pick it up" is still in effect.


This applies even in the UK ;)

I shall avoid going south of Al Hatra no matter how convincing it sounds!
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Re: Any Flaggers in Kurdistan?

Postby Kurt » Mon Jan 28, 2013 1:49 am

vlindsay wrote: the last one I sat though lasted 5 hours and involved an academic telling me everything I never wanted to know about salted fish pits in Pompei circa 500 years before Mt Etna.



You mean you sat next to an expert on Pompeian Garum Factories? That is my idea of heaven. I have been trying to reproduce Roman garum (salted and fermented fish innards used in a sauce...the closest stuff in Europe is "Garum" but made from the liquid coming off salted anchovies in Sicily and Worcestershire Sauce..which is probably the only surviving foodstuff from Roman Britain) in my kitchen but with disastrous and very smelly consequences. Since the Romans used it on everything, even apricot desserts, I assume it was made in different varieties and did not always taste like liquid garbage like much of the Thai and Viet sauces do and I really want to reproduce some Roman dishes.

Next time you sit next to him please ask him if he has any workable recipes.
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Re: Any Flaggers in Kurdistan?

Postby ktrout » Mon Jan 28, 2013 2:42 am

Kurt wrote:You mean you sat next to an expert on Pompeian Garum Factories? That is my idea of heaven.

That means he can write papers but would never be able to produce the stuff. Interesting that such a commonly used good would become a lost art. Can't you just use MSG?
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Re: Any Flaggers in Kurdistan?

Postby Kurt » Mon Jan 28, 2013 4:28 am

ktrout wrote:
Kurt wrote:You mean you sat next to an expert on Pompeian Garum Factories? That is my idea of heaven.

That means he can write papers but would never be able to produce the stuff. Interesting that such a commonly used good would become a lost art. Can't you just use MSG?


Heston Blumthal supposedly recreated it using a pressure cooker so I supposed I will have to get one of those some day. Also there is a Jamaican food store where they salt their own mackeral and I am tempted to just ask them if they could sell me some brine.

The thing is that the art probably was not really lost, it just ceased being a form of mass production. The Roman Empire could have a centralized trade in mackeral guts (the guts were put in salt on the boat right after gutting) but when Barbarian Europe took over they had better things to do than devote whole areas of towns to fermenting fish guts and plus they needed water piped in and water piped out...something we barbarians did not really figure out and use regularly until the last century.

The other ingredient missing from traditional western cooking is Silphium. It was the main product of Cyrene but went extinct when goats roamed onto the last patch in about 60AD. Asifoetida from the giant fennel is supposed to be the closest relative and it was supposed to also be birth control and an aphrodisiac (its seeds are where we get our shape to mean "heart" or "love"). Personally I think it is not extinct, but just a weed someplace else and the Cyrenes were like Humbolt County dope growers and just grew the best stuff.

The old Roman recipes had garum, must and silphium in everything, then when Silphium was gone they used asifoetida. The only dish I have been able to recreate using a mixture of viet fish sauce and fish stock (1 part fish sauce to 4 parts reduced fish stock) is a roman frittata made with eggs mixed with the sauce, sour orange juice and honey and seasoned with coriander, cumin, asifoetida. You bake it in a ceramic dish covered until the eggs are fluffy (olive oil in the dish of course) and it comes out as this more sweet than sour dish but more awesome. My friends liked it so much they wanted to make a tape for me to submit to the food network but I thought a show about one Roman dish that does not taste like cat food would be quite dull.
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Re: Any Flaggers in Kurdistan?

Postby Dr. V » Mon Jan 28, 2013 7:46 am

Kurt wrote:You mean you sat next to an expert on Pompeian Garum Factories? That is my idea of heaven.
Next time you sit next to him please ask him if he has any workable recipes.


Try here for more information on the vats:

http://classics.uc.edu/pompeii/index.php

http://www.umass.edu/classics/PQP.htm

Someone in the audience of the lecture (which preceded the dinner) asked if Garum was still made and apparently it is - although I've 'temporarily' forgotten where. Apparently the interesting thing is /was that around that time it wasn't mass produced but each household had a vat in which they made their own garum and some left over to sell. At some point - within a short time frame - garum production moved to outside of the city, almost as if the garum mafia took over production and it no longer became economically or socially acceptable to produce garum in your own house (maybe cos of the smell!) - the garum vats were then turned into other things and the lay out of houses were rejigged (because of the smell the garum pit had to be near the front door but with the demise of the garum pit it was possible to move the front door).

You could try this: http://pompeii-food-and-drink.org/garum.htm

He was also talking about a military diploma which they had found in the ruins (which I thought was more interesting but which didn't get as much air time as the garum vats) - this diploma was given to soldiers upon their retirement to prove their soldiering heritage and the one that they had found had been in some really interesting places / battles and came from a nearby village. It was found in the blacksmiths and so the question was what was soldier X who had a nice business in the nearby village (I seem to remember they got given land etc on retirement) and very good soldier heritage doing in the blacksmiths in Pompeii.
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Re: Any Flaggers in Kurdistan?

Postby vagabond » Tue Jan 29, 2013 6:13 pm

nerds.

random question for v: did you ever release your BFC thesis ("A Cohort of Psychos" is the title right?) as a pdf or something somewhere interested folks could read it (mostly out of vanity) ?

Also, is the Kurdistan and other trips part of your studies on dark tourism or are you going there with other topics in mind?

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Re: Any Flaggers in Kurdistan?

Postby nowonmai » Wed Jan 30, 2013 12:06 am

vagabond wrote:nerds.

random question for v: did you ever release your BFC thesis ("A Cohort of Psychos" is the title right?) as a pdf or something somewhere interested folks could read it (mostly out of vanity) ?

Also, is the Kurdistan and other trips part of your studies on dark tourism or are you going there with other topics in mind?

-V


No it can't be released as it was edited by Penta, there was some massive sex and drink fuelled drama following this and the universe nearly imploded. The document is now stored in the Ark of the Covenant and protected by loyal Flaggots. You can read it once the Guf is empty.

She is now a self appointed expert on nebulous bullshit and academia is too polite ever to point out that someone is talking shit from a position of no knowledge other than something they once heard in a lecture theatre.

And I like the girl.
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Re: Any Flaggers in Kurdistan?

Postby Dr. V » Wed Jan 30, 2013 8:19 am

vagabond wrote:nerds.

random question for v: did you ever release your BFC thesis ("A Cohort of Psychos" is the title right?) as a pdf or something somewhere interested folks could read it (mostly out of vanity) ?

Also, is the Kurdistan and other trips part of your studies on dark tourism or are you going there with other topics in mind?

-V


nowonmai wrote:
The document is now stored in the Ark of the Covenant and protected by loyal Flaggots.


Nothing so glamorous - my copy is currently somewhere in the room which used to be (before Handy Andy and his botchjob builders got involved) the outside toilet.

I have several journal articles which I'm waiting to submit for publication and they would be out in the public domain - I was going to do this at Christmas but I got flu and spent 2 weeks in bed watching the Big Bang theory instead. The full text isn't available although RYP has a copy which I assume he is using as a door stop somewhere. It was eventually called: A virtual ethnography of the Black Flag Cafe: A forum for people who travel to dangerous places.

Kurdistan is a invitation to speak at a conference - I'm talking about the security of exam papers, assessments and producing exam board documentation (lists of students and their grades). If I ever got the urge to revist people who go to DP's I would probably do a bit of research about academics who go to DP's but before I do that I need to publish the thesis articles so that's a long way off.
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