The Monocle Minute

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The week ahead, opportunities and observations
Saturday 24 March 2018

Gun control

Image: Shutterstock

Enough is enough

Today’s rally seeking stricter gun laws in the US is a shot across the bow for Trump: some of those marching will soon be eligible to vote.

Today the streets of Washington and more than 800 other cities within the US and beyond will swarm with supporters of stricter gun-control laws at the March For Our Lives rally. Its message is simple yet powerful: “not one more”. Twelve weeks into the year there have already been 17 different school shootings in the US; that’s 1.5 shootings a week. Since the attack at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, that killed 17 people on Valentine’s Day, demonstrations have gained momentum. Even corporations such as Citigroup and Walmart have been inspired to take action but the US gun lobby is powerful and, so far, lawmakers have been slow to react (president Donald Trump seems to believe that arming teachers is the solution). A major moment of truth will come in this year’s US midterm elections when some of these students will be eligible to vote.

Food

Sound bite

East London restaurant Jidori has shuffled west and its new space in tourist-packed Covent Garden serves a supper worth singing for.

Restaurateurs Natalie Lee-Joe and Brett Redman, the fine folk behind Dalston yakatori joint Jidori, have done a remarkable thing by opening a second outpost in Covent Garden. Far from stiffening up service for the oldsters, turning down the tunes or flogging an early-bird special to the theatre crowd, their three-storey space on Catherine Street brings a pleasing Hackney hum to the West End. The menu’s crowd-pleasers, such as tsukune yakitori (a minced-chicken skewer with egg yolk) and a rather fetching katsu curry Scotch egg, are joined by changing specials from chef Shunta Matsubara: think mussel tamago don (a fancy omelette of the Asian persuasion) and green-tea noodles with yuba and kikarage (tofu and mushrooms to you and me). The addition of a basement karaoke room, it seems, is just one of many reasons to sing Jidori’s praises.

Archaeology

Image: Getty Images

Dig up the dirt

A Moscow official wants to scrap pre-construction archaeological surveys meaning that the city’s buried treasure could be lost forever.

Archaeological mapping of land before any construction project has been a legal norm in Europe since the 1990s. Russia joined the protocol late in 2002 but Andrei Vorobyev, the governor of the Moscow oblast, is already demanding the law be scrapped as a hindrance to infrastructure projects and investors. Experts, including Aleksei Kovalev, the man who helped draft the law in Russia, are warning that this would result in archaeological finds being crushed under the bulldozer. In fact, large swathes of the Moscow region have never been surveyed at all – strange, considering that one of the treasures of the capital is the underground remains of ancient Moscow.

Film

Hair of the dog

A London arts space is hosting an exhibition about Wes Anderson’s latest film that’s sure to get your tail wagging.

London’s best space with the best taste is 180 The Strand, a decommissioned office block that’s since played host to Lisson Gallery’s 50th birthday show, the Hayward’s off-site video extravaganza ‘The Infinite Mix’ and various fashion shows. Now it’s showcasing an exhibition of the sets, models and puppets that star in Wes Anderson’s wonderful new stop-motion animation Isle of Dogs. The yarn is set in a near-future Japan and stars a lot of scrappy dogs fighting for survival on Trash Island. The set, graphic design, typography and bewitching depth of detail will charm your cotton tabi (that’s socks, to you) off: every newspaper, label, sign, book cover and discarded tin of sardines has been lovingly styled, made, aged and shot. It’s beautiful. Best of all, though, there’s a saké-centric cocktail bar and ramen joint styled as a full-size set for you to get your teeth into.

From Monocle Films

Zurich: The Monocle Quality of Life Conference

This year we’re in Zürich and discovering all the city has to offer from dips in the lakeside pools to post-event escapes in the mountains. Prepare to be challenged and inspired by a host of thinkers who will be reimagining urban living and exploring our key theme: ‘made in the city’. Book your ticket here.

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