Chickpea Farmers Wanted in America for Hummus Invasion: Move Over Tobacco!

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As hummus, a staple of Middle Eastern cuisine, gains popularity among Americans seeking healthful snacks, tobacco farmers open their fields to chick peas and Pepsico undertakes to develop new hummus food science with an Israeli company, Strauss. Both businesses see massive potential in developing American chick pea strains for a number of good reasons, some perhaps less good. […]

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Bernard Pras: Spot the Upcycled Objects in this Art

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Using only upcycled objects, French artist Bernard Pras reinterprets iconic images through the art of anamorphosis. Relying on old trash gathered near his installation sites, Bernard Pras from France assembles clothes and rags, wood, old record albums, dishes, broken toys (and anything else he can grab) to re-interpret pop-culture images. It’s far from ad hoc: […]

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Jordan Talks Plastic Waste: Action Wanted!

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Random dumping and burning of plastic garbage, which constitutes a fifth of the Kingdom’s solid waste, are negatively affecting the environment and public health, said a Jordanian official. Good morning, Jordan! Glad to see you waking up to your plastic addiction and outrageously dirty dumping disorder. Plastics, widely introduced to world markets in the 1960’s, have […]

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Lost In Translation Middle East Style

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As America hunts for clues on the Boston Bomber suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, Laurie goes on with life and looks to the follies of communication in the Middle East.  Communication is key to everything. Every driver knows that intersections are risky, but the crossroad of language and culture is especially prone to accidents.  Need proof? I pick […]

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Amazing Pavegen Tiles Harvest Energy From Footsteps

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Paris marathon organizers plan on ripping off its runners!  Energy-harvesting tiles placed along an 80 foot section of the Champs Elysee will capture energy from the pounding feet of 40,000 racers.  The technology developed by Pavegen offers a tangible way for people to engage with renewable energy generation. The flexible tiles made from recycled truck tires […]

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Bling for Books: Angelina Jolie Opens School in Afghanistan

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Angelina Jolie funds girls’ schools in Afghanistan with the proceeds of her luxury jewelry line. Hollywood actress and goodwill ambassador for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNCHR), Angelina Jolie is building girls-only primary schools throughout the country. One particular school, which opened last November, educates about 300 girls and is located outside Kabul in […]

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David Thomas Smith “Google Maps” Your City As a Persian Rug

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Irish artist David Thomas Smith weaves thousands of Google Maps screen grabs into intricate designs mimicking Persian rugs.  Look closer, and these symmetrical compositions reveal global landscapes transformed by mankind. Imagine a carpet made up of aerial satellite images of modern infrastructure: concrete roads and rooftops replacing fiber weft and warp.  See this artist’s “rug” […]

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Hussein Chalayan’s Transformer Runway Clothes

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Want to go from one high fashion look to a completely different one without getting undressed? Hussein Chalayan is a high-end transformer clothing designer.  Turkish Cypriot Hussein Chalayan’s double-duty dresses are sensual and slightly sustainable: two-in-one haute couture arrives in a single shipment. London-based designer Chalayan unveiled a line of tranformative clothing in the runways of […]

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Gabriele Galimberti Shows Middle East Kids and Their Toys

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Gabriele Galimberti’s“Toy Stories” documents the world’s children posed with their favorite toys. Everyone remembers their most prized possessions.  Mine were an Etch-a-Sketch, some wads of Silly Putty, and an endless supply of Crayola crayons: surely you can rattle off yours? Galimberti, an Italian photographer who specializes in serials, all variations on a single theme, said […]

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Iranian Snipers Take Aim at Tehran’s Giant Mutant Rats

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Super-sized rats infesting Tehran are so huge that a special team of sharpshooters using night-vision-equipped rifles have been tasked with extermination. It sounds like a sci-fi B movie, but the problem is real. Rats have long plagued Iran, and the problem worsens when springtime arrives: melting mountain snows flood the critters’ nests, and millions are […]

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Springtime in Paris Means Khamsin Sandstorms in Amman

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Springtime in Jordan brings ferocious sandstorms and a nose-clogging meteorological phenom called “khamsin”. Grab your Michael Jackson face masks and the decongestant of your choice, close the windows tight and stockpile tissues.  The dry, dusty winds of khamsin are blowing across the Arabian Peninsula and North Africa and right into your sinus canals. That image […]

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