EGYPTIAN TROUBLES LOOM?
It's been a turbulent couple years in the tourism business, with government problems in Thailand, the attacks in Mumbai and other problems. Now comes the weekend bombing at a market in Cairo, which killed a 17-year-old French girl and injured at least 21 others.
Egypt has been emerging as a great spot for tourists looking for cheap alternatives to places like Italy or Spain. But bombing a spot so close to a popular tourist bazaar is undoubtedly going to make folks think twice about an Egyptian holiday.
Reuters reports the bomb was planted under a bench near the Khan el-Khalili market and that was "the first such attack on tourists in the city since April, 2005 and the first in Egypt since the Sinai resort of Dahab was bombed in April, 2006. That's less than three years ago.
Reuters says tourism accounts for about seven per cent of Egypt's gross domestic product but that "previous bombings had only a short-term impact" on tourist visits.
Seems diners at a tavern in Mesana, Cyprus weren't very happy with their bill and took it to an extreme - opening fire with a shotgun, then dousing the place in gasoline and threatening to set it on fire. Apparently the man weren't happy (we guess not) over a 93 euro bill for food and drinks at the restaurant on Sunday night. They offered to pay only 50 euros, which seemingly didn't sit well with the owner.
CALLING MR. BLACKWELL
Reuters (thanks, guys) also reports today that public servants "in the gritty central Chinese city of Zhengzhou" have been not to wear "unnatural hair styles" or wear clothes that are too wild. The report says that from now on, Zhengzhou city officials "should make sure their clothing matches and (should) stay away from bright colour schemes."
It's not clear what set the government off. But you'd have to wonder what they thought of what Goldie Hawn was wearing at the Oscars Sunday night? Yikes - act your age, sweetheart. We can forgive Miley Cyrus her Disney World silliness as she's just a kid. But Goldie oughta know better.
Speaking of the Academy Awards, have you ever seen such inane fawning and bowing and scraping over alleged "celebrities?" It's embarrassing. I covered sports for 15 years and I've interviewed Michael Jordan and Roger Clemens and Wayne Gretzky and Mike Weir and I never felt obliged to gush, "Gee, you're so wonderful and it's such a pleasure to have you come by and deign to talk to little old, undeserving me - and might I add that you look particularly ravishing today." Yes, it's Oscar night and they all dress well. But skip the obvious and ask them an actual question.
Your job is to TALK to these people, not be their public relations agents.