Sunday, April 25, 2010

NY Times contributions, Oct. 1, 2009, to Dec. 31, 2009

Below are microblog posts I sent to the New York Times' Cuba Page from Oct. 1, 2009, to Dec. 31, 2009. I am taking part in a Times experiment that enlists outside experts to help keep readers up to date with events in Cuba. Click here for 2010 contributions.

Cubans who can afford it often eat roast pig to celebrate the New Year.

Dec. 31, 2009 2:39 PM EST: New Year's Day is the 51st anniversary of the triumph of the Cuban revolution. Castro loyalists in Havana will mark the occasion with music, dance and 21 blasts from a cannon.

Dec. 28, 2009 4:23 PM EST: Cuba has a rich variety of potholes, thanks in part to heat and torrential rain. The country would need 19 million tons of asphalt to fill the holes and repair its battered roads, but produces only a million tons of the sticky black stuff every year.

Parrandas de Remedios. Photo credit: Getty Images

DEC. 22, 2009 1:39 PM EST: In the 1820s, a young priest in a sleepy Cuban town ordered children to use whistles, horns and other noise-makers to wake lazy parishioners for Christmas Eve mass. The practice blossomed into one of the country's most colorful and unusual celebrations, las Parrandas de Remedios.

Las Parrandas de Remedios. Photo credit: Getty Images

DEC. 21, 2009 12:59 PM EST: A Colorado scientist accused of spreading dengue fever in Cuba as part of a biological warfare attack in the 1970s denied the accusation in his first in-depth account of the episode.

DEC. 4, 2009 1:05 AM EST: and some other travel Web sites don't book private B&Bs in Cuba to avoid breaking U.S. law. That steers foreign tourists to state-owned hotels, exactly the opposite of what American economic sanctions intend.

NOV. 25, 2009: An unusual sea slug that gives off light when bothered has been found in Cuba, touted as a "hotspot for marine diversity."

NOV. 23, 2009: Cuba's socialist government approved free sex-change operations in June 2008. Now comes another perk of universal health care: Free penis implants.

Photo credit: Zoriah

NOV. 18, 2009: A famed photojournalist finds condoms scattered across the streets of Havana and wonders: "Is sex is the national sport of Cuba?"

A Cuban baseball fan roots for her favorite team

NOV. 12, 2009: A Web site asked readers to submit names of baseball players who have deserted Cuban teams. The number quickly hit 200 and continues to climb.

Photo credit: YouTube

NOV. 3, 2009: Pro-democracy activists, including the son of a revolutionary hero, are in Week 4 of a sit-in. A sign at their improvised Havana headquarters reads, "House of Freedom." Government supporters stop by regularly to yell insults.

OCT. 30, 2009: Children dubbed "The Little Bilinguals" will celebrate Halloween in Havana. But most Cubans won't. Pumpkins are scarce and cost more than $2 each - three days' wages for most workers.

Juanita Castro. Photo credit: UPI

OCT. 26, 2009: Retired Miami pharmacist Juanita Castro, 76, told a Spanish-language TV station on Sunday that she worked with the CIA in the 1960s even as the agency plotted to assassinate her brother, Fidel. Her new book hits the stands today.

OCT. 20, 2009: Fame-seeking Florida snake collector made dubious claims about mysterious 1959 disappearance of Cuban revolutionary Camilo Cienfuegos, historian now says.

OCT. 20, 2009: Old-school boxing gym in Havana has "mystical appeal" and "almost ancient equipment." Trainer calls it "Mecca of Cuban boxing."

Yoani Sanchez hitches a ride

OCT. 14, 2009: Havana blogger Yoani Sanchez said Cuban authorities this week denied her permission to travel to New York. Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism plans to honor her today for pursuing her craft with “an enormous amount of guts.”

Orlando Luis Pardo. Photo credit: Boring Home Utopics

OCT. 13, 2009: Havana photographer Orlando Luis Pardo is suddenly popular in Miami. Cuban exiles ask him to take pictures of sights they miss: the old family home, a street corner, a landmark. Pardo does it for free and posts the photos on his blog.

OCT. 6, 2009: An accused CIA operative built bombs for anti-Castro exiles - and volunteered to spy on them, too, newly declassified documents say. Luis Posada Carriles was not your typical "boom and bang" individual.

Man with "bazooka" fumigates home in Tarara, east of Havana

OCT. 5, 2009: A New Yorker living in Havana curses slow-flying mosquitoes and the strangers who enter her home with the dreaded "bazooka," aimed at killing the skeeters with a noxious cloud.

Fidel Castro marches past the U.S. Interests Section in Havana.

OCT. 1, 2009: Fidel Castro's primary home is thought to be located near the 14th hole of the former Havana Biltmore golf course.

From Tracey Eaton, freelance journalist

Background on NY Times microblogs


gabby said...

very interesting post, i gain knowledge about cubans. =)

gennie, Las Vegas,NV.
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Unknown said...

great post, it really helped me alot…gives me alot of information… thanks…. nice job…
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