Items 1-25 · Items 26-50 · Items 51-75 · Items
76-100 · Items 101-125 · Items 126-150 ·
Items 151-175 · Items 176- 200 · Items 200-225 · Items 226-250 · Items 251-275 ·
Items 276-300 · Current Items · Index
Artistic Henna Painting in FezMorocco
We quickly became addicted to the rose water lavishly sprinkled around La Maison Bleue and
to the intoxicating fragrances of cumin and cinnamon wafting through the spice souk.
At the modest Herboriste Ibn SINA, we indulged in tiny bottles of Moroccan rose oil,
as well as dark powdered kohl to line the eyes, chunks of musk and amber to
scent the linen closet, and spicy cardamom pods for cooking. (We skipped the herbs
for black and white magic.) In the meantime, Khalid was deftly painting mystical
Berber henna patterns on the back of our daughter's hand. "Henna is from
heaven," he murmured, leaving the price for this service to our discretion. Was
it our imagination, or did the swirling crowds in the street part magically, whispering
Henna! as we passed by? Contact: Herboriste Ibn SINA, 6 Fondouk
Lihoudi, Derb Zaouia, Fez, Morocco. Telephone: 212/55-63-74-17.
Antique Shops in FezMorocco
Here are three we liked:
The sales pitch was brash, and it was no surprise to learn that L'Art Islamique
sends a caravan to New York and Santa Fe each year. But owner Ben Jelloun has
filled the shop with handsome Berber silver
and coral jewelry, magnificent painted doors and architectural pieces, old bowls, and
antique bronze lanterns, one of which found its way to our door, safely, just three
and a half weeks after we bought it.
Contact: L'Art Islamique, 36 Derb Touil, Fez, Morocco. Telephone/fax:
212/55-74-12-04. Website: www.artislamique.co.ma.
We were eager to find black-and-white calligraphic tiles similar to those that traverse
the walls of the Attarine medersa. Our guide discovered a lovely group of 18th
century tiles with flourishes and stylized flowers at Antiquite Nejjarine,
a tiny shop stuffed floor to ceiling with alluring treasures.
Bargaining took place in English, French and Arabic, an intensely amusing and
satisfying process for the three gentlemen involved. Even as we were leaving, they
were draping us with beautiful old Moroccan wedding belts and explaining how we could more
easily find our way with the aid of some well-priced bronze navigational instruments.
Contact: Antiquite Nejjarine, 3 Place Nejjarine, V. A., Fez, Morocco.
With three floors of very desirable objets, Art et Antiquites de Fes
(a.k.a. Aux Merveilles de Fes) can be daunting. As the lights flick on in darkened
rooms, old bronze lanterns with colored glass, geometrically patterned bowls, painted
doors and cupboards, Berber jewelry, and curved scimitars are revealed. We also
admired dark Syrian chairs and tables intricately inlaid with mother of pearl.
Contact: Art et Antiquites de Fez, 11 Rue Rahabt el Kaiss, Fez Morocco.
Telephone: 212/ 55-63-35-32. Fax: 212/ 55-63-76-44.
148. Best Small, Elegant
Hotel in FezMorocco
To arrive at La Maison Bleue, bleary-eyed after a ten-hour trip from New York, is to feel
as though one has stumbled into a seductive Arabian Nights dream. Outside there is
the heat, the exhaust fumes, and the cacophony of Fez. Inside, there is coolness and
serenity. A massive carved cedar door opens: You enter an intricately tiled,
glass-roofed atrium and sink into sumptuous brocade cushions. As Andalusian music
watts from a velvet-curtained alcove and a fountain burbles, you are offered a steaming
glass of fragrant mint tea. You are grateful--and very, very happy. For more
on La Maison Bleue, please click here.
Contact: La Maison Bleue, 2 Place de L'Istiqlal, Batha 30000, Fez, Morocco.
Telephone: 212-55-63-60-52. Tel/Fax: 212-74-18-43 or 55-74-06-86. Website: www.maisonbleue.com.
147. Best Large Luxury Hotel
Built in 1879 by the Grand Vizir to Sultan Moulay Hassan I, the famed Palais Jamais has
been favored by discerning travelers since it became a hotel in the 1930s. The
Moorish-style palace and its lovely Andalusian gardens were the setting for Paul Bowles'
Spider's House, which chronicled the fall of the French Protectorate in Fez in
the 1950s. A recent, rather slick renovation by Sofitel, the French hotel chain, has
left intact much of the beautiful green and blue zellij, carved plaster and
painted beams, although one suspects that the glitzy lobby, populated by American and
British tour groups, might be a recent addition.
What we enjoyed: a quiet, late-afternoon meal on the
terrace overlooking the tranquil swimming pool. It's hard to find a light lunch in
Fez, so we were pleasantly surprised to discover a menu offering club sandwiches and
orange sorbet. Rose petals floated in a nearby fountain, and beyond we could see the
rooftops of the medina. It was completely tranquil, a world away from the clamor and
hustle of Fez. What we did not enjoy: service that was ineffective. The
management was incapable of engaging a taxi one afternoon, and after waiting 45 minutes we
finally walked out of the front door and snagged one that was disgorging passengers in the
front of the hotel. Standard rooms are attractive; the best have small balconies
with views of the medina. Contact: Palais Jamais, Bab Guissa, 30000, Fez, Morocco.
Telephone: 212-55-63-43-31. Fax: 212-55-63-50-96. Website: www.casanet.net.ma/users/palais.
146. Best Lunch in the Fez
We loved Restaurant Asmae. As we collapsed into soft brocade cushions in a tented
alcove and gazed up at the beautifully painted ceiling hung with antique lanterns, our
waiter arranged before us sixteen plates of delicious Moroccan salads, a virtual lexicon
of these room temperature appetizers, including zucchini with honey and a superb harissa
(hot sauce). These were followed by a savory vegetable cous-cous, and our favorite
Moroccan dessert, oranges macerated in sugar with cinnamon and mint. By now we were
reeling, but were still able to enjoy a post prandial conversation with the sleepy-eyed
owner: "America. Everybody works, everybody is busy.
Busy...busy...busy...." Contact: Restaurant Asmae, 4 Derb Jeniara, Fez
Medina. Telephone: 55-741-210. Fax: 55-633-624.
145. Best Pizza Restaurant
One evening we hopped into a petit taxi and went to the popular Chez Vittorio
where we discovered a less traditional side of Fez. Here the small tables were
packed with well-to-do Fassi families who live in the villas and apartments of the Ville
Nouvelle. Unlike the medina where many, if not most, men and women wear traditional
djellabas on the street, the men were attired in business suits, the women in chic slacks
and jackets, with lots of gold jewelry and usually with two or three adorable children in
tow. The tasty, thin-crusted pizzas Margarita, slightly charred around the edges,
are the big sellers here, as is the chocolate mousse. Contact: Chez Vittorio, 21 Rue
Brahim-Redani, Fez. Telephone: 55-62-47-30.
144. Best Morrocan Travel
Sarah Tours, which specializes in travel to Morocco and Spain, planned our trip. The
owner, Hamid Mernissi, is from Fez, and it was his excellent suggestion that we stay at La
Maison Bleue. Although some of the details seemed a little iffy before we left, he
promised, "You will be just like princesses in Morocco." And, in fact, he
was right. We had a superb guide in Fez, reliable and courteous drivers with
Mercedes for trips to the surrounding countryside, and great flexibility when we changed
parts of our itinerary at the last minute. The agency, which has an office in Fez,
also offers group tours to the World Sacred Music Festival and such events as the Imilchil
Betrothal Festival. Contact: Sarah Tours, 1803 Belle View Boulevard, Suite 1-A,
Alexandria, VA 22307. Telephone: 800-267-0036. Fax: 703-765-7809.
143. Best High-Wire Act
No longer, unfortunately. Harold Davis--a.k.a. the Great Alzana--died on February 16
in Sarasota. But at least this daredevil, whom we never knew about, died of old age.
His "tricks were so dangerous that New York State passed a law to keep him
from working without a net...." He "broke arms, legs, ribs, head and
ankles, as well as his back twice." Once a coal miner, he thought he was safer
way above ground. "John Ringling North ... called him the greatest and most
foolhardy, high-wire artist who ever lived." See The New York Times, March 18, 2001, p. 29.
142.Best Baby Danish
We've almost missed the plane from New York City once or twice. That's because we
just have to stop at William Greenberg Jr.'s place to pick up baby danish, which outshine
their larger rivals just as calves' liver puts beef liver to shame. Naturally, you
won't get out of the shop without a pound of mixed cookies and a brownie or two for the
trip home. 110 Madison Avenue, New York, New York. Telephone: 212-744-0304 or
212-861-1340. Website: www.wmgreenbergdesserts.com/about.htm.
141. Best English Muffin
We try them all, but the old guy is the best. It can even be had cheaply at Sam's
Club. Thomas' English Muffin dates back to the 19th century, when Samuel Bath Thomas
of Plymouth, England opened up a shop on New York City's 9th Avenue, a street that still
harbors great fruit and vegetable stands and which is, of course, the home of the six-foot
hero. All good things came to an end in 1970 when S.D. Thomas was acquired by Corn
Products, later called Bestfoods, which has done all sorts of bad line extensions
that don't measure up to the muffin. And now another whale--Unilever--has swallowed
Bestfoods. Mascohists, we have tried all the regional muffins in such places as
Kansas City and new-cuisine, overblown ones in San Francisco. Needless to say,
they're no darn good. See www.bestfoods.com/profile_history_thomas.shtml.
140. J. Richard Harris' Wine Vintage Chart (Update of entry #9)
Most wine charts don't work, especially the ones in major publications which
have simplistic 1-10 grading scales. Who would have thought that a
charming Canadian oil consultant would have the right stuff, but he does.
In fact, we've used Mr. J. Richard Harris' chart for at least 10 years.
He's at #820, 717 7th Avenue S.W., Calgary, Alberta, Canada, T2P OZ3.
139. Best Old-Economy
Seafood in the Financial District of San Francisco
Neither the food nor the atmosphere at Sam's Grill is Nuevo California, but Sam's does
boast the old hearty fare you used to find around town. Probably, if you haven't
been before, you should have the sand dabs and a martini. According to the menu,the
establishment dates back to 1867, which is pretty old for California. The patrons
are still proud of their guts and their boisterous laughs. Better for lunch than
dinner. Sam's Grill. 374 Bush St. GA-1-0594. www.samsgrill.com. Email: email@example.com.
door opens: You enter an intricately tiled, glass-roofed atrium
and sink into sumptuous brocade cushions. As Andalusian music watts from a
velvet-curtained alcove and
138. Best Flack Job 2001
We don't know who did the publicity work, but they deserve high honors. Seabiscuit: An
American Legend, by Lauren Hillenbrand has gotten every review that matters,
including high marks from Michiko Kakutani, surely one of the better critics at the Times. Of course, Seabiscuit was one of the
most successful race horses in history and got more coverage in his racing days than
several world figures of the late 1930s. We promise to take a look at the book and
will be waiting for a remake of the Seabiscuit story without Shirley Temple.
137. Best Mexican Restaurant
with a Party Atmosphere in San Antonio
fiesta time all the time at Pico de Gallo. You can get better food at half a dozen
other spots, but for fun, nothing beats the atmosphere at this popular West Side
restaurant. Strolling mariachis (musicians) with guitars and horns wail
"Guantanmera," the walls vibrate with color (pink, yellow, lavender) and even
the gaily painted ceiling fans flash with sparkly "jewels." Don't miss the
carved wood bar as you enter: adorned with roosters and tequila maidens emerging from
agave plants, it's quintessential Tex Mex kitsch. The crowd is lively, the
margaritas are cold, and the service is friendly and efficient. But think twice
about coming on Saturday night, when the parking lot can get rowdy. Contact: Pico de
Gallo, 111 S. Leone, San Antonio, Texas. Telephone: 210-225-6060.
136. Best Latin American Art
Collection in San Antonio
Nelson Rockefeller first visited Mexico in 1933. He fell in love with the
country's whimsical folk art and, over the next 40 years, amassed a stunning collection of
2,500 pieces. In 1984, his family gave his holdings to the San Antonio Museum of Art, where today it forms the
core of an 8,000-piece permanent exhibit of Latin American art housed in its own 30,000
The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Latin American Art spans many
centuries, from the pre-Columbian period to the Spanish Colonial and contemporary eras.
Its treasures are so rich and so varied that only a fraction is on view at
any time. Highlights include a beautiful Mexican tile arch that was once the
entrance gate to a San Antonio estate, a magnificent 16th-century Mixtec mask inlaid with
turquoise and mother-of-pearl, and paintings by Diego Rivera, Frieda Khalo and Rufino
Tamayo. But the pieces that tug at the heart are those created by folk artists for
ordinary people to use in their daily and ceremonial lives: a toy airplane, an earthenware
platter depicting a young girl and a rose, dancing skeletons from a Day of the Dead scene.
Rockefeller and others whose works make up this collection had it right, finding
beauty and joy in quotidian objects. Contact: Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Latin
American Art, The San Antonio Museum of Art, 200 W. Jones Street, San Antonio, Texas,
78215. Telephone: 210-978-8100. Website: www.sa-museum.org.
135. Best San Antonio Visionary Garden
you wander through native plantings and traditional rose and herb gardens at the San Antonio Botanical Garden, you reach a grassy lawn
bordered with colorful annuals. Then the surprise: across the lawn rise the
futuristic glass and steel pyramids of the Lucille Halsell Conservatories. Designed
by Argentinean architect Emilio Ambasz, these striking glass houses were built to hold
different plant species from around the world, each in its own self-contained
microclimate. To escape the scorching South Texas sun, each "room" is at
least partly buried in the earth; light streams in from the glass overhead, and windows
open and close hydraulically to let air in. In the Epiphyte Display, fog enshrouds
bromeliads and orchids clinging to mossy rocks and the trunks of fallen trees, while in
the Desert Pavilion, warm, dry air creates the right environment for golden barrel cactus
and other hot-climate succulents. The soaring Palm House features a dramatic stroll
past prehistoric cycads and then, by way of a catwalk, through the tops of two-story
palms. What a shame that city politics have curtailed funding for this visionary
garden. Contact: San Antonio Botanical Gardens, 555 Funston Place, San Antonio,
Texas 78209. Telephone: 210-207-3250. Website: www.sabot.org.
(To see pictures of the plants, though not the conservatory itself, click on
"Take me to..." at the top of the home page and then select Lucille Halsell
134. Best History Books for
forces of political correctness, along with the dumbing down of education in America, have
contrived to make history (a.k.a. social studies) one of the least appealing subjects for
elementary and middle-school children. Parents can counter the eye-glazing,
yawn-making textbooks that most schools use by introducing their youngsters to the very
funny, wildly irreverent Horrible Histories by British author Terry Deary.
The twenty or so books--from The Groovy
Greeks to The Blitzed Brits--are jampacked with the kind of grisly
details, obnoxious cartoons and strange-but-true facts that other history books for kids
leave out. In the publisher's words, "this is history with all the nasty bits
series (which has sold 2.5 million copies in the UK) has turned one 12-year-old we know
into a late-night reader who regularly promises (and fails) to turn his light out in
"just a few more minutes." He says, "Terry Deary proves to you that
there were a lot of grim and gruesome things that went on, and he tells you all about
them." Dates and major events are clearly presented, but you also learn, in The
Frightful First World War, that troublesome German recruits were made "to scrub
out the corporals' room with a toothbrush" and that the way to survive a poison gas
attack was to breath through urine-soaked handkerchief. Lots of fun quizzes and
silly cartoons by illustrator Martin Brown round out the offerings in each book. A
few Horrible Histories can be found at Amazon.com and
at www.amazon.co.uk; the best selection can be found
at bookstores in the UK, including those at Heathrow. For more on Terry Deary and
Martin Brown, click here.
133. Best New (Esoteric)
Book About Tea
rare exceptions, most books about tea are really about the scones, the clotted cream and a
nostalgic longing for a leisurely afternoon ritual that no longer pertains to modern life,
even in England. (James Norwood Pratts A Tea Lover's
Treasury is a notable exception.) This is one reason why discovering The Time of Tea
was such a pleasure. First published in Paris, the book is actually a pair of
volumes: one of photographs of the tea ritual in Japan, China, Sikkim, France,
amongst the Tuaregs in the Sahara, and yes, in England; and the other of short,
provocative thoughts about the true nature of tea and the places it comes
authors Bruno Suet and Dominique Pasqualini see it, the story of tea in the West is
inextricably bound up with colonialism and the exploitation of the East. (The black
China teas we drink are said to have been invented by a merchant who smoked rotting leaves
to sell to foreigners.) This political interpretation may not go down well with your
Earl Grey, but the book can be read simply for its wealth of information about this
ancient beverage. For instance, there is the tale of the legendary Wulong tea,
'Red Robe'," the product of a few centenarian tea plants
grown in a secret mountain location in China. In 1998 in Fujian province, one kilo
was auctioned for $900,000. We always knew we werent getting the best.
To order the book, contact www.inpursuitoftea.com,
which also sells superb teas. (See Best of Class #58.)
132. Best Red Rose Courtier
The British actor Michael Williams, husband of the British actress Dame Judi Dench, died
of lung cancer on January 11. Married fondly for some thirty years, he sought her
hand for a decade until she agreed to tie the knot. "We were walking down the
road in Battersea and it happened to be raining, so I asked her again, and this time she
agreed." He "so adored her that he had a single red rose delivered to her
every Friday, no matter where in the world she was." See New York Times,
January 20, 2001, p. A35.
131. Best 2000 Greeting Card
The Houston designer Jerry Herring does the best promotion pieces in the graphic design
business, because he never promotes much. He just tells good stories about wine, or
episodes in his career, or other charming interludes. This year he does "Home
Cook'n," a holiday season story. "Every Christmas we share short pieces of
fiction with our clients and friends. Although I did lose my mother this past year,
this piece is based on my recollections of every mom I've ever sat down to eat with."
See Herring at www.herringdesign.com.
130. Best 50th Anniversary
Ann gave it to Dr. Ed. A trip to the Ice Palace, known as the Ice Hotel. He reports:
"It is really a tour-de-force, and altogether another world. The bar
is a dead ringer for the Star Wars Bar -- strangely dressed people doing strange things
but all having a grand time. ... The clientele is very
international--Japanese, Swedish, British, and U.S., of course." There's a
knock-off of this in Quebec, if you can't get yourself to Sweden. See www.icehotel.com. Make sure you bring home an ice
glass "of the purest River Torne ice." Dr. Ed, incidentally, is Dr. Ed
David, former executive director of Bell Labs and one-time Presidential Science Advisor."
129. Best Experimental Roofing Material
A grass and wildflower meadow on your rooftop? Frank Lloyd Wright would have
approved. David Beattie, Associate Professor of Ornamental Horticulture at Penn
State University, has teamed up with business executive David Maravich to develop green
rooftops with living plants. As reported by Tom Gibbin the Pittsburgh
Post-Gazette, the growing medium is expanded polypropylene, an "impact
absorbent" used by automobile manufacturers to cushion a vehicle's bumpers.
This version, which is intended to replace standard roofing material, is lightweight,
durable and highly porous, with plenty of holes that will allow water to percolate and
also hold planting material in place. Alas, being environmentally friendly doesn't
come cheap: one roofer estimates that a green roof will cost $8-12 per square foot, as
compared with $3-6 for a more conventional approach.
Moreover, the concept will only work on flat
roofs. And what about mowing and replacing dead plants? Beattie plans to
investigate these issues when he creates a green roof for a Penn State root cellar next
year. Already, though, there are converts: The Gap headquarters in San Bernadino,
California has a vegetative rooftop, as does the city hall in Chicago--20,000 square feet
to be exact. Green rooftops may still be experimental, but if they do take off, we
foresee a whole new market niche for landscapers: rooftop blow and go.
128. Lowe Bow Full of
Christine and Tracy Blake of Chagrin Falls, Ohio, have taken over Lowe Bow. So, for
you bow tie aficionados, lo and behold, the address is P.O. Box 728, Chagrin Falls, Ohio,
44022. Telephone: 440-247-6348. See entry #1 to learn more
about the Lowe Bow tradition.
127. Most Useful Libraries
See "Singapore Turns a New Leaf on Libraries," Wall Street Journal,
January 3, 2001, p.B5B. It has spent $577.5 million hot-wiring its libraries in
useful ways for its citizens. "Singapore's libraries lend out more books (27.4
million in l999, more than double the number than in 1994) than any other city in the
world." The libraries are viewed broadly as community centers, not book
and Biggest Lists
We're coming across more best and biggest lists, some of which even promise to be helpful.
As you know, there has been a lot of emphasis on finding the best prices for things
on the Internet, rather than attending to quality. We hope that, in time, the
quality gap will be closed so that we can begin to find, on a worldwide basis, the mostus
for the leastus. For now we think these rankings will help. We expect
eventually there will be a worthwhile Michelin for everything--not just restaurants in
p. Turner's Bests.
Turner, a programmer for Yahoo, has put up these book, movie, and music
best lists. In each of the 3 areas, he has put up 20 or so best
lists—Random House on books, the Grammies, etc. Some lists are even
valuable: the Newberry Awards tell you pretty good books to get your
youngsters. Probably the film list can help you if you are off to the
video store and you are not sure what you want to watch tonight. These
lists are not refined, but you may pick up a few ideas when you are
trying to break out of a rut. See
NationMaster.com is moving to become the champion of the country
rankers, looking at a wide number of variables and also allowing one to
group countries in all sorts of ways for comparison.
n. How Countries Stack Up. Professor
Suzuki at the European Institute of Japanese Studies, Stockholm School of
Economics, has patched together these rankings of all the major European
and Asian countries, but including a few small countries at the margin.
He ranges over education, health, economics, etc., with subcategories on a
host of factors. You will find much of what you expect—the United States
ranks high in terms of the percentage of the population that has completed
secondary education, but low on scientific, reading, and mathematical
literacy, from which we might infer that our schools may not be too
effective. But there are surprises—who knew that Luxembourg had such a
high density of mobile phones? See
m. Ranking Economic Freedom.
The Fraser Institute, up in Vancouver (www.fraserinstitute.ca)
ranks the nations of the world every year through the prism of laissez-faire market
orthodoxy. It's not clear that more freedom, thus defined, buys you a better
economy, but this exercise does tell you a few things. City states (Hong Kong is #1
and Singapore #2) have a large stake in free markets, without which they cannot
exist. You want to watch out for nations where freedom has plummeted over the last
thirty years, such as Germany, Belgium, and Central American countries such as Costa Rica,
Panama, and Nicaragua. Spectacular improvements in some -- Chile, Bolivia, the
United Kingdom, Ireland, and a few others -- merit attention by investors.
l. Ranking the States and
Fiscal Performance Index 2001. This is how you learn whether your state (or
province) is fiscally responsible--or not. Massachusetts, Nevada, Ontario, and Texas
get high marks for controlling spending and taxes. Oregon and California are at the
bottom of the totem pole. We were surprised that North Carolina came in at number 38
out of 54, all contributing to its current fiscal jam and slowing economy.
k. Root Beers Taste-Off.
Matt Bergstrom--don't know the man--offers here the Great American Root
Beer Showdown. Boylan's, of ginger ale fame, has a lot of winners, including
this site's top-rated root beer at 4.50 points. IBC, our favorite thirteen years
ago, is damned with faint praise, but still gets a high 3.46 rating. In general, the
Midwest seems to produce the most winners. We need a sociologist to tell us why the
cornbelt is so rooted.
j. The Hundred Funniest
Movies. This list proves that rankings should never be calculated by
self-interested insiders. Asking 1500 Hollywood types to rate movies is like having
financial analysts rate stocks. The list may be starry-eyed but it is not stellar. Airplane
and Young Frankenstein had their many moments, but they are simply not all-time
funnies. From our biased point of view, The Thin Man movies and Raising
Arizona should have been much closer to the top. But whatdya gonna do?
Not the Consumer Price Index, but rather the Corruptions Perceptions Index of Transparency
International. Finland is the best and Nigeria is the worst--not too many surprises
there. Nevertheless, there are a few surprises elsewhere, with Mexico, China, and
Argentina one-half to two-thirds of the way down the list, behind some magnificently
corrupt countries. Go to www.gwdg.de/~uwvw
and click on 2000 Index. (Update: The 2001CPI is now available at http://www.transparency.org/documents/cpi/2001/cpi2001.html#cpi.)
h. Top 100 Books in Libraries.
There are too many management-genre books here, which makes us fear for our
librarians. Naisbitt makes it twice. Peters is all over the place, and so is
Bob Woodward. Conclusion: libraries, like our intellectuals, are largely prisoners
of the present. See www.oclc.org/oclc/press/19991005a.htm.
Thirty Artists. Artcyclopedia,
which tracks 7,000 artists, tells us who is hot now by seeing which artist gets the most
visits on its website. You can also see which posters are selling well, which may be
more important. For the popularity stats, see www.artcyclopedia.com/mostpopular.html.
f. Ranking the Presidents. 78
imaginative academics were polled for this survey of the Federalist Society and the Wall Street Journal. Washington is #1, Lincoln
#2, and FDR #3. See www.opinionjournal.com/hail/math/math5.html.
e. Ranking Marketing Journals.
But by academics, so don't necessarily rush to look at this site.
d. Supercomputers. Go to www.top500.org. This rates computers by GFlops and
shows you who owns them.
c. Looking at websites. Be
careful of www.gomez.com, since Gomez is a website
consultant. If the truth be known, there are probably only fifty good websites
around, but these fellows would have you believe they are breaking out all over.
While this guide will not really help you find quality sites, it will help you build a
better site by showing you what's judged to be acceptable now.
b. Decorators and such in New York City.
See The Franklin Report (www.franklinreport.com),
which has already created waves among interior decorators and home craftsmen in Manhattan.
Like the Zagats (lawyers in their other lives), whose guides on restaurants now
cover the nation, Ms. Franklin is an emigre from investing banking, I believe, who also
uses a consumer-report approach to weed out shoddy craftsmanship and overcharging in the
home trades. If students at some universities can rate their professors, why can't
we rate every profession and trade, since licensing bodies have proved totally derelict in
carrying out this kind of task?
a. Decent toilets. See besttoilets.com, which now covers twelve major U.S.
cities as compiled by David Vogue from New York City. How vital this is! In
New York, many of the great bathrooms of the past have disappeared. Philip Morris
has displaced the old East Side Air Terminal--always a good stop in an emergency.
The showers of Grand Central, where New Yorkers could primp for job interviews,
have gone the way of all good things. Incidentally, we recommend the Crescent
(Hotel) in Dallas.
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