On my last visit to Europe (I was marooned on a remote Croatian island) I found the International Herald-Tribune in somewhat sorry shape—small, strange, poorly designed. But I still love getting the thing, because it makes me feel so…cosmopolitan. The paper’s corporate masters at the New York Times may be injecting some life into IHT; for one thing, the paper’s World Cup blogger, Roger Cohen, is doing a pretty good job. His blog is also attracting intelligent commentary, with few of the usual Soccer is Gay or You Dumb Yanks cretins turning up.
Speaking of remote Croatian islands, the jewel of the Adriatic plays in the most enticing game of the tournament so far. I’m planning to watch with me mate Tom, who has the distinction of being a “double foreigner”—a Canadian with Croatian parents. This, by rights, should be an epic match-up—a chance for Ronaldhino to fall flat or electrify the world, a chance for the Croats to pull a shock. Can’t think of a better antidote to yesterday’s Ugliness, can ya?