In Yann Martel's novel Life of Pi the protagonist is at sea, marooned on a raft with an untamed tiger as a companion. The people of Ireland know how that feels. The Celtic Tiger was what the world called Ireland's economic boom. Now we see how dangerous it is to hitch your life-raft to a tiger.
Ireland is paying the price for low interest rates, unfettered borrowing and deregulated banks. The tiger has vanished and no one knows how long Ireland's economy will be lost at sea. But our guest says the Irish goverment's financial incompetence was monumental and there's evidence of enough criminal activity for years of trials.
Don Cherry didn't get to be popular by pleasing everyone. He loves controversy and he courts it when he goes after his favourite targets.
The 76 year old hockey icon waded into political waters this week, lending his voice to a robocall in support of a high-profile Conservative candidate in one of next week's federal by-elections. We wondered what other causes Grapes will take on. North Korea? Canada Reads?
It was during those years he produced his first book for children, Haroun and the Sea of Stories, written for his young son. Now he's written another kid's book Luka and the Fire of Life, and like the best of children's lit, it's a great read for adults too. It's challenging and deep and multihued. And it's very funny. A feature interview with Salman Rushdie on Day 6.
Christian Lander came up with the idea for Stuff White People Like, a website that gently lampoons the tastes and tendencies of the white middle class and then he spun it off into a best-selling book. He just released his second book in the series and he joins us to talk about why it's funny to tweak caucasians. And if they're offended, they're just being white.
Actor Portia de Rossi has produced a memoir that takes the reader deep into her insecurities, her eating disorder, the challenge of coming out in Hollywood. The star of Ally McBeal and Arrested Development is a performer with lots of wit and intellegence. Does it translate into her prose? Her book is called Unbearable Lightness, Kathryn Borel answers our question: Should I Read It?
The Vatican has opened the door to condoms, not as a means of birth control, but as a way to fight disease. This seems to contradict the Pope's statement last year when he condemned condoms as a tool for fighting AIDS in Africa. And the pro-condom message came out in an unusal way: a remark Pope Benedict made in an interview clarified later by a statement. It's still a significant shift, but it's far from official doctrine. Our guest tells us who will benefit.
And with Angela Merkel musing about the Euro's exceptionally serious situation I've been wondering if the currency will even make it through another decade. Will 2020 once again see a Europe with Deutsche marks and French francs? Will the Euro become... intangible?
UNESCO is trying to protect what it's calling intangible cultural heritages.
Mike Balazo calls baloney. We got him to tell us about it. And we paid him in Euros.
Enjoy the show, but don't forget to go on our Big 6 site and vote for the top stories of 2010. Or nominate your own. New nominations might win a copy of Salman Rushdie's latest book, Luka and the Fire of Life. Maybe even a signed copy.
There's nothing like free stuff in a time of restraint.
Have a great weekend. And Sláinte!
Brent Bambury @CBCDay6