Happy holidays (and an excellent surfer speak video)

Mis amigos: May this holiday season make you as stoked as this surfer in Huntington Beach, California. Killer, bra. (RSS readers may need to, like, totally click through to see the vid on YouTube.) (Via BoingBoing.)

New T+L SEA story: driving along Thailand’s side of the Mekong river

I have a story in the January 2009 issue of Travel + Leisure Southeast Asia about a car trip I took along Thailand’s side of the Mekong river, in the country’s rural northeast. The journey was exceptional in every way: The views were striking, the people were generous and fun-loving, and — this being Thailand […]

Newley.com traffic stats for 2008

A quick look at my Google Analytics traffic stats for 2008 reveals the following: Visitors and Page Views — 31,480 people visited Newley.com this year (an average of 2623 per month) for a total of 50,901 page views — Visitors from 162 different countries came to Newley.com during 2008. The top ten countries were the […]

Official: Morales assassination plot foiled

CNN has this brief item: “Official: Plot to kill Bolivian president foiled” A top Bolivian government official said Monday that the country’s intelligence services had uncovered a plot to assassinate President Evo Morales.. “A few weeks ago, the state organizations of intelligence received information about plans in relation to an assassination, and that those plans […]

“India is to frugality as Bethlehem is to Jesus”

That’s a line from Anand Giridharadas’s Letter from India in today’s IHT: “For tips on frugality, look to India” VERLA, India: Watching Americans try to make themselves frugal is like watching Mongolians try to make Bordeaux wine. Thrift does not come naturally to a country that turned layaway, zero-interest home loans and pre-approved credit cards […]

Map of Premier League Teams

Speaking of soccer (football), if you enjoy the English Premier League but wonder where some of the more obscure teams are located, check out this helpful map. While most non-British fans know which teams are in London and which are in Liverpool and Manchester, fewer are familiar with the locations of teams like Stoke City, […]

“Goalkeeper Science” in the NYT’s 2008 Year in Ideas

As I may have mentioned in the past, I’ve been a soccer (football) goalkeeper since the age of 7. I can’t get enough of the game, and I absolutely love goalkeeping. (I still play regularly today.) ((A few of my favorite goalkeeper-related Web sites include The Glove Bag — an exceptional online community of goalkeepers […]

More on Thailand’s political future

WSJ: “New Thai Prime Minister Faces Immediate Hurdles” Ousted premier Thaksin Shinawatra’s grip on Thai politics — and the instability it provoked — eased on Monday with parliament’s election of a new prime minister from a rival party. The rise of 44-year-old Abhisit Vejjajiva, the Oxford-educated leader of the Democrat Party, could bring some calm […]

Thailand has a new prime minister

AP: “Thai opposition leader becomes prime minister” Lawmakers chose an opposition leader as Thailand’s prime minister Monday in a bid to end months of political chaos, as supporters of the previous government unsuccessfully tried to halt the result by blockading Parliament. The articulate, Oxford-educated Abhisit Vejjajiva, who heads the Democrat Party, gathered 235 votes against […]