There it is.
Zabi, who was killed in Afghanistan on Sunday along with NPR photojournalist David Gilkey, was far more than just a “translator-fixer” for NPR. He was one of a group of Afghan journalists who carry on their crucial work despite great and constant personal risk. They have extraordinary courage.
I first met Zabi early last year, on the recommendation of an Afghan colleague. I was looking to hire a journalist to help me report the continuing tragedy in Afghanistan during my occasional visits there. He’d earned a reputation as an excellent freelancer who’d worked for some years with China’s Xinhua News Agency.
He was a tall man with a warm smile, who somehow managed to couple a casual manner with a quiet sense of authority. It soon became clear that he had a great eye for a story, and that people from every level of society simply liked and trusted him, an essential quality in the journalism business.
Zabi seemed at ease with everyone; he persuaded senior politicians, young male migrants heading to Europe, female victims of war, and many, many more to speak into NPR’s microphone — and, by doing so, to shine a light on their nation’s unending conflict.
I joined a new company last month and I’m pretty bemused at the company/team culture. The company is big on “culture” in general, which is great, but my individual team (~20 people) is VERY spiritual and believes strongly in the power of positive thinking and that Law of Attraction/The Secret thing that was so trendy a few of years ago.
For example, we have a weekly Law of Attraction tarot card ritual, where someone goes around and makes us draw two cards from a couple of Law of Attraction decks at random. Then we have to read the statements on them aloud to the person who is distributing the cards, and then display them at our desks so people know what we’re working on a personal level for the week.
There are also “unofficial” team-building activities every month where we all go to someone’s house, silently meditate for half an hour, and then discuss our personal “visions.” These events are not strictly mandatory, but it’s heavily implied that not participating = not being a team player.
well, it’s good to have a plan:
At one point during the 1985 Geneva Summit, President Ronald Reagan and Soviet Premier Mikhail Gorbachev took a break from negotiations to take a walk. Only their private interpreters were present and for years, the details of what they talked about were kept secret from both the Russian and American public. But during a 2009 interview with Charlie Rose and Reagan’s Secretary of State George Shultz, Gorbachev revealed that Reagan asked him point-blank if they could set aside their differences in case the world was invaded by aliens.
Sad news for Veep, AWESOME news for Brooklyn Nine-Nine:
Will you be writing for Veep next season, and does that mean you’ll break down and buy a car instead of relying on ridesharing, which you’ve been doing for the past year?
No and no [laughs]. I am going to Brooklyn Nine-Nine. I’m nervous but excited. The opportunity presented itself. I’m a big believer in growing and changing. And I think this will be such a good chance for me to do something different with more responsibilities. It’s 22 episodes not ten, and my name will be on an episode at some point. So the schedule’s different, and the people are, for the most part, also a little younger, so it will be socially different, and also a little more competitive, which I think will be interesting. I love that show: Andy Samberg is a national treasure.
The glorious Omar Holmon of Black Nerd Problems on his love for Lip Sync Battle:
LSB got celebs out here doing choreography, paying homage in themes, and most importantly, straight up cosplaying as singers, divas, rappers… basically as other celebs. This shit is all in fun… but it gets so real. Randy Coture “The Natural” went against Comedian Gabriel “Fluffy” Iglesias. Randy was an MMA fight, his job was clockin’ cats out of this dimension and he out here in short shorts doing a rendition of let’s get physical. Shit just got real. you can’t come into this arena with any Male Fragility or preconceived notions of male masculinity ’cause that shit will have you taking home an L.
There’s levels to this shit too; there’s fun like the Queen Latifah and Marlon Wayans match up. It’s just fun to see this side of your fave celebs living their best lives being themselves, unapologetically. Watching Salt and Peppa, two pioneers in hip-hop get to express their love of pop music for the world to see. Anthony Anderson and Tracy Ellis Ross, the co-leads of Black-ish and two of the funniest people on TV going head to head with their outlandishness? I am here for ALL of that shit man. Especially LL Cool J’s enthusiasm watching everyone perform because you can tell just how badly someone is getting bodied off of LL’s reactions.
Nicole is an Editor of The Toast.