leisure 08.14.06

Brain Food

Diplomacy and World War — This course looks at how World Wars and peace agreements have shaped the world, using diplomatic documents, diaries, and film. Monday, 6:45-8:25pm, 9/25-12/4. $480

New York City — Fifteen classes devoted to the literary and cultural history of the city, moving through neighborhoods, and considering various factions that are part of them. Readings run from Whitman to Jay McInerney as well as the ways in which NY is portrayed in movies and on TV. Wednesdays starting September 6th, 8-9:50pm, $510.

Preserving Our Legacy: Collecting Family Recipes is a one-session class, Wednesday, Oct 25th, 7-9pm, at the 92nd St. Y. It's taught by Lorraine Bodger, an award-winning cookbook writer, who knows that those recipes written on scrap paper, index cards, (and whatever else) often come with valuable family stories and lore. She'll help you discover ways to collect them so that they can be handed down to future generations. $25

Frances Fox Piven of CUNY, Todd Gitlin of Columbia, and Michael Walzer of the Institute for Advanced Study discuss The Vanishing American Left at CUNY Graduate Center, 365 5th [34th] 212.817.7570, September 19th, 6pm, free. They'll ask where the Left stands on such key issues of the days as the Bush administration's war on terror and globalization. It'll be interesting to see if the title of this talk seems prescient or off-base after the midterm elections.

Get a few-day jump on the crowds when the JCC, 334 Amst [76th] 646.505.5708, screens the new mock documentary from Christopher Guest ("Best in Show," "Waiting for Guffman") called "For Your Consideration." This one is about an indie film called "Home for Purim," set in the 1940s American South, that unexpectedly starts earning buzz for the performances. Guest draws a comedy dream cast from his stable of regulars: Eugene Levy, Catherine O'Hara, Parker Posey, Jennifer Coolidge, and Michael McKean, but also throws Ricky Gervais into the mix. Monday, Nov 13th, 7:30pm, $10.

DNA: it's not just for individuals any more. Scientists have been learning of late that DNA has also has been keeping a detailed record of the three billion or so years of our evolutionary past. Learn more when Sean Carroll, author of Endless Forms Most Beautiful: The New Science of Evo Devo, gives a talk called Making of the Fittest, October 5th, 7pm, at the Museum of Natural History's Kaufmann Theater, $15.
Free Routers
Andrew Rasiej, former Public Advocate candidate, technology visionary, and one of the advisors to the Fon company writes: "I've started to give away free Fon routers in the East Village with a goal of making the entire East Village the first neighborhood in NYC to be one big hotspot. Check out www.wifi4ny.com. The goal is to give routers to people with broadband connections with a preference for those people with apartments facing the street. 3-4 routers per block will cover the entire street if they are relatively evenly distributed. Once a block is covered, other people with broadband connections who want to connect to the Fon network can do so for free if they get a router from Fon directly and install it. They then will be given a user name and password that will let them connect to any FON signal anywhere in the world. Non broadband subscribers could also connect to the Fon signals but would pay a $3 a day fee. (A lot less than T-Mobile in Starbucks)."


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