Smart. Very Smart

It looks like Smart cars, which I saw for the first time on my trip to Paris in 1999, will finally be making their way to the US market. At least, that’s what rumors and unnamed sources say in such prominent places as the Wall Street Journal and Der Spiegel. Think that’s a lot of fuss for unverifiable rumors? You probably haven’t filled up recently. The nifty two seater Smart is poised to enter the market at a banner time for small vehicles thanks to soaring post-Katrina fuel prices; fuel economy is reported to range from 46 MPG city to 70 MPG highway. Of course, they crumple like an aluminum can if you breathe on them wrong, but honestly—after my most recent $40 tank of gas, I’m thinking that sounds like a reasonable trade-off for a lower fuel bill.

If nothing else, the Smart should set a bar for other automakers as the subcompact market heats up. Maybe now we’ll finally see the Volkswagen Polo in the US.

God bless the tellers of truth II: Museum of Bad Art

When an article about the famed Museum of Bad Art in Dedham opens with the line, “When I heard the Hockney show was closing [at the MFA], we thought we’d pick up some of the slack,” you know the gloves are off. This is apparently my morning to try to piss people off, but I wasn’t really drawn to the David Hockney show at the MFA, and the MOBA’s take on it, “Hackneyed Portraits,” is just brilliantly funny.

I like the new works, but they still can’t hold a candle to Lucy in the Field With Flowers or Sunday On The Pot With George.

God bless the tellers of truth

I thought his book Kitchen Confidential was nasty, brutish, and not short enough, but at least Anthony Bourdain has the cojones to tell it like it is:

[Emeril] looks like [legendary chef Georges Auguste] Escoffier now compared to some of the bobble-heads who are on that network… [For example,] Rachael Ray. She’s paid more and is more popular [than Emeril], and I see a day when the executives say, we don’t need Emeril anymore, even though he built their network. They’ll replace him with some industry-created freakozoid who’s been grown from a seedling into a recognized brand. When you look at Sandra Lee or Rachael Ray or some of the new shows like “Calorie Commando” that are just vomit-inducing — at least Emeril worked his way up and has a real restaurant empire.

Heck yeah. Apologies to her fans, but we really need to have a Beat Up on Rachael Ray week. It’s still not clear to me why she’s become such a Persona when her main talent appears to be talking endlessly and purveying mediocre food.