The subject of my chat with host Jian Ghomeshi: travel. Specifically: why I like the beaten path, why I take not-so-flattering photos, and other topics you might have heard once or twice on this here blog. And I defended tourists. Yes, you. All of you. You're welcome.
Click here to listen to the podcast. (Look for the Q podcast listing for Shirin Neshat, the more famous person who was also on today. My segment starts around the 41-minute mark.)
In other news, Lee suggested that I start posting some of my reading list as I do background research for the book. The man's full of good ideas. (For those just joining the fun, such as anyone who came here after hearing me on the CBC [hello], click here for an introduction to Lee and to judge for yourself the truth of the preceding sentence.)
So, I will. Before I get to the books I've read, or plan to read, here are some good, pertinent articles that I've read lately. (I'm skipping ones that I've already linked in other posts.)
Twilight of the Travel Guidebook? by David Page on Travelers Notebook (via World Hum)
Page, a guidebook writer himself, notes that smartphones, combined with web sites like TripAdvisor and Yelp, have begun to make guidebooks obsolete. I see his point, although I do think that that most people still appreciate the curated-by-an-expert aspect of guidebooks, not to mention the fact that we're still a ways from being able to get reliable cell phone service everywhere (to which I say: thank goodness).
Tourist Traps Worth a Visit by Peter Jon Lindberg in Travel + Leisure
Lindberg is up for a National Magazine Award this year, and this was one of the nominated columns. The headline kind of says it all, and Lindberg takes what in lesser hands could be a contrarian-but-not-insightful rant and makes it pretty darn convincing, layering on one astute (and often amusing) anecdote after another to build his case.