Jun 20, 2012

My Worldview - 3, Phở Fed

Lest the corn fed dish smells of narrow worldview, I'll loop the big blue outer ring today to spread the gap. 

I shop local when possible, but a person would be a punk not to try a sloppy vat of Vietnamese rare-beef Phở.   

Uncompassionate to be indifferent to the genocide going down in North Sudan.   

Evaluation incomplete if not test driving cars assembled in Japan when picking a ride.
Head in the sand if you shout "Chinese products are garbage!"  The iPhone is born in Shenzhen factories that are a world standard for manufacturing prowess and responsiveness:

"A foreman immediately roused 8,000 workers inside the company’s dormitories. Each employee was given a biscuit and a cup of tea, guided to a workstation and within half an hour started a 12-hour shift fitting glass screens into beveled frames. Within 96 hours, the plant was producing over 10,000 iPhones a day."  "The speed and flexibility is breathtaking,” the executive said. “There’s no American plant that can match that.”

My preferred place to grab goods is a local farmers' market.  Teleporting layers on the Rings of Influence, my second favorite stop is World Market.  WM imports wine, coffee, tea, candy, toys, tables, paintings, adirondacks and jewelry from Malaysia, India, China, Singapore, Italy, France, Germany, Mexico, Kazakhstan and Canada (not sure that last one counts).  

Sheesham consoles steel-chiseled by hand in India.
Recycled glass tumblers mouth-blown in Mexico.
Chinese paper dragon kites and Australian windup tin toys.
Japanese tea and Belgian dark chocolates
Euro wine, yes please.

I source most birthday and wedding gifts from WM.  Recipients smile when opening something they've never seen before and not available on Blue Light Special at Kmart.

The kitchen reboot ate IKEA cabinets from Sweden and a table pieced together of local timber from a felled barn.  Slate floor tiles cut from India and Rada knives cast in Waverly, Iowa. Windows made in America and a fridge bolted together in New Zealand.  The combo pack of mixing local with world results in a complex 'n tasty dish.

Pork Phở and Iowa sweet corn, pot of hot China jasmine green with a sweet Czech koláč finish.

There's a good chance I'll be taking a bird to Pune, India on business.  We're also doing Disney soon.  Guess which one I yearn for most.


  1. As someone who works with 6 global offices including India and China. I see both the good and bad sides of our new global economy and what it means for both our children's generation as well as the local business down the street. But as a mom and a global citizen, I would be interested to hear your opinions of Pune after you visit. My frustration is that with all of the western corporations investing in India, life is not getting better for the poor in that country. There is grinding poverty the likes that most midwestern Americans have a hard time envisioning. Children and women are still suffering from poverty related diseases, lack of education, and lack of nutrition. I know that you will find India intoxicating, as it is! The people are warm and hospitable, the country is beautiful. But, be sure to keep your eyes open to what is really happening and what can we as global citizens be doing to make this a better place for everyone, not just the privileged. I really enjoy your blog and truly look forward to your insights. Enjoy your trip and safe journey!

    1. I'm prepared to see a deep chasm between the poor and privileged in India. Pune is a ruthless mix of absolute poverty squatting directly next to high-tech engineering and IT universities and billion dollar corporations. I'll take an honest look at the city and report back, bit-by-bit on the blog.

      The global market is here to stay. Sure, there will be a small number of companies reversing course and insourcing rather than outsourcing, but not many. I say rather than fight it, look for ways to work with it. When my kid is looking for colleges in a few years, I'll encourage her to consider degrees and classes that'll keep her relevant in a world market.

      Thanks for reading the blog and commenting, makes me want to continue writing.

  2. Anonymous6/22/2012

    Yayyy...so glad you are visiting my country and my state (I am from the capital) you will be overwhelmed for sure, it would be interesting to read your views about India.
    Yours truly,
    Saturated fat champion (aka anon arguer in a born to eat 1)
    PS: Since you are an endurance athlete I still insist that you check out Mark Sisson's (marksdailyapple.com) philosophy since he was an endurance athlete too at one point!

    1. Chandra, is that you? Looking forward to seeing your country and state, it will be a privilege and experience of a life.

      Laughed when I read "saturated fat champion", my kid asked what's so funny. I do a range of workouts (hike, bike, run, swim, ski, heaving lifting, sleeping), although definitely more time spent on cardio and less as a gym rat on the weights. There will be plenty of time as I get older to lessen the cardio and ramp up lifting as Mark S. recommends. For now, I prefer to make hay and milk the running/biking fitness while I (mostly) still have my youth.

    2. Anonymous6/25/2012

      Pune is a historic city and considered the seat of education, its kinda like Boston, many universities and an environment of learning, try visiting the old part of city! (I assume you may be visiting the IT parks which are on outskirts)Have a great time, it would be even great if pigtails is going too!!
      By asking you to visit MDA I meant to check out his health/nutrition philosophy, you exercise regimen is great!


Thanks for the note, check back for my response!