Robert Winters, co-owner, Tapa Bakehouse & Coffeehouse, GlasgowYou’re from New Zealand originally, so how did you end up running an organic bakery and coffee shop in Glasgow?It’s a complicated story. Back in New Zealand, I was a trade union official and my wife, Virginia Webb, was a policy advisor. We decided to take a career break to do some travelling, and ended up in Scotland. We liked the place so much, we decided to stay. I’ve always been an enthusiastic home baker and we are both really into coffee – New Zealand coffee shops are way ahead of those in Britain in terms of quality – so we decided to set up a bakery and a café. Tapa Bakehouse launched in 2003, selling organic bread such as sourdough, focaccia and rye bread.We then developed a wholesale business to delis, food halls and restaurants, and started attending farmers’ markets. We opened the 60-seater Tapa Coffeehouse three months ago and employ 24 people.What formal bakery training have you had to date?I did a year-long National Certificate in Baking at the local college, which taught me the fundamentals, and I’ve learned a lot from books and the internet. I’ve also had some great advice from Andrew Whitley at Bread Matters and the team at the Lighthouse Bakery. Most of what I’ve learned has come from trying out different recipes at home and learning on the job. I’m passionate about using organic ingredients and I’ve developed recipes without additives, improvers, fat and sugar. We employ six bakers now and I’ve helped train them all, passing on the knowledge I’ve built up.What’s your role in the company?We’ve employed a master baker from Hungary, who has brought some fantastic skills to the business, so I’m less hands-on than before. I’ve taken on more of a general manager role, helping with training, new product development and the overall direction of the business. I’m keen for staff to take ownership of their roles. For example, one of our bakers is being trained to look after new products and another is responsible for wholesale. It’s a similar story with the coffee shop staff. We are looking at ways of developing this further, with staff able to buy equity in the company so that, if it performs well, they will benefit.What’s the secret of your success?We have an eye for detail and are never happy with what we have achieved. Our products are great and people love them, but it’s impossible to produce the perfect loaf. There’s always something you can improve on.
Come next weekend, the psychedelically inspired LEVITATION Festival will take over Austin, TX for three full days, April 29-May 1st, bringing artists like Brian Wilson, Flying Lotus, The Arcs, Ween and more! The festival has made an intriguing announcement today, sharing that the entire event will be live streamed using 360-degree technology for a virtual reality experience.The festival has partnered with a company called VRLIVE, allowing fans worldwide to enjoy the festival in a truly immersive technology. While the stream will be available for any device, a VR headset will create the most engaging experience, as you can literally watch the festival in all directions.Virtual reality is quickly rising to the forefront of music streaming technology. With the recent announcement that the Grateful Dead’s “Fare Thee Well” shows in Santa Clara were captured in VR, and a recent Umphrey’s McGee show as well, it’s clear that these cutting-edge groups are on to something. If you try a VR headset, you’ll quickly understand why.Tickets for the 360-degree stream run only $20 and can be found here.
For nearly 2,000 miles, it runs alongside California, Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas. It begins in the east in Brownsville, Texas, and marches west along the Rio Grande, halting at the Pacific, in the town of Tijuana, notorious for its drug violence and reputation as a party spot for frat boys.Whatever the cause, the mythic U.S.-Mexico border draws millions of people to it each year. It’s the most frequently crossed international border in the world, and is one of the most intriguing unseen lines in history.Just ask Rachel St. John. In her new book, “Line in the Sand: A History of the Western U.S.-Mexico Border,” the Harvard associate professor of history traces the border’s origins to its modern-day consequences.The eastern U.S.-Mexico border was easy to establish: the Rio Grande forms a natural divide. But after the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo ended the Mexican-American War in 1848, diplomats gathered with maps to configure the western border. According to St. John’s research, they drew arbitrary lines, following no existing geographical feature, but connecting a few known spots like El Paso, the Gila and Colorado rivers, and San Diego Bay.Armed with maps and equipment, a U.S.-Mexico boundary commission next set out into the barren and inhospitable desert with the task of formally surveying and demarcating that part of the border.“There’s this idea that you can draw a boundary line on paper,” mused St. John, “but that’s much harder to put into effect when you get on the ground.”Some of the men’s maps proved incorrect, which spurred on-the-spot compromises — just another added stress in addition to contending with everything from heat and rough terrain to getting lost, Apache attacks, and sometimes death.“The one part of the boundary line that corresponded to a natural geographic feature, the Gila River, was made obsolete by the renegotiation of the border in the Gadsden Treaty of 1953,” wrote St. John. “From that point on, with the exception of a small stretch of the boundary line that runs along the Colorado River, the western border was made up of a series of imaginary lines.” Finalized in 1854, “the boundary line as it exists today was in place,” she said.But what St. John finds remarkable is the shift in the border’s meaning over time.“When the border was first drawn, the government thought, ‘No one’s ever going to come out here. This is the middle of the desert — who cares what happens,’” she said. “But there’s a massive change in economics that begins in the U.S. and spreads into Mexico in the late 19th-century. And as you have the development of this capitalist economy, the border takes on different meanings.”Cattle ranching and mining became big industries, and a railroad was built on the U.S. side. The exchange of goods prompted the U.S. government to send customs agents to the border, and, said St. John, “It’s really the change in the economy that causes the government to care about maintaining the border.”According to St. John, most people assume today that the border is there to regulate the movement of people, “but the sense from both the U.S. and Mexican governments that they needed to regulate the movement of people is a 20th-century phenomenon.”The first people who the U.S. government wanted to control weren’t Mexicans, but Chinese immigrants, St. John discovered. “I find it really interesting that during the first decade of the 20th century, you have Chinese immigrants disguising themselves as Mexicans so they can cross the border.”St. John grew up in Southern California, and as a teenager sometimes trekked to Tijuana herself. “I remember one day thinking, ‘It’s really interesting how the border is one way on this side, and on the other side it’s totally different,’” she recalled.The border now is political, policed, and unpredictable. “All the attention on the border, in some ways, is not a very effective way of dealing with larger problems of managing immigration and other smuggling. Many people in the U.S. without proper documentation entered legally and overstayed their visas. This emphasis on building a wall doesn’t necessarily match up with the issues people are trying to address,” said St. John.“But one thing studying the border has taught me is that it hasn’t always meant the same thing, and so it’s very possible that in the future it won’t mean the same thing,” she noted. “At no time that I’ve seen does anyone want a totally closed or open border. It’s all about creating a border that’s a force field — it lets in the things you want and lets out the things you don’t.”
Saints coach Sean Payton believes NFL teams that target young, offensive-minded coaches are making a mistake by ruling out other qualified candidates without giving them a chance to prove themselves.During an interview with NFL Network, Payton explained this year’s hiring process left out worthy candidates simply because teams were searching for the “next Sean McVay.” Based on the eight teams that hired new head coaches this season, there’s a notable trend as six of those coaches led the offense. I asked @Saints Coach Sean Payton about the trend of teams hiring young, offensive-minded head coaches. He delivered a strong, honest response, capped by him saying some teams are making mistakes and the Saints can’t wait to play them. This is damn good. 🔥🔥🔥@nflnetwork pic.twitter.com/AOiAsLCXeO— Steve Wyche (@wyche89) March 28, 2019Payton pointed to Patriots coach Bill Belichick and Tony Dungy as examples that came from the defensive side before seeing success as head coach. NFL Network notes only two of those six hires (Buccaneers’ Bruce Arians and Jets’ Adam Gase) have had previous head coaching experience. Denver’s Vic Fangio and Miami’s Brian Flores were the only two hired during the latest coaching cycle from the defensive side, with Flores being the only non-white male.”I think we’ve got a diversity problem, like this season, what took place, that’s hitting us square in the face. I think that not a lot was written or discussed about it,” Payton explained. “There are a handful of coaches that I know that if I was a GM who I would be interested in hiring.” Related News Greg Schiano abruptly steps down as Patriots defensive coordinator “The thing that can be disappointing though is when you talk to someone and they give you the profile (of their desired new coach) and then I’ll say ‘well you’re not interested in a young Bill Belichick or a young Tony Dungy?'” Payton said.”They get so pigeonholed into — cause this is cyclical, right, this goes — and ultimately you would say if we did a little history, successful head coaches probably come from the east and the west and north and south. They probably come of both color and they probably come on defense and on offense. And they’re good leaders. They’re great leaders. And, so, if you say ‘well I just want the one that coaches quarterbacks and they’re on offense,’ well, then, you’re going to end up with a smaller pool and you’ll probably have less of a chance to be right, because already of eight hired there’s going to be three that survive three years.”Payton, 55, added he’s excited to play those teams that hired a new head coach because he “see(s) a lot of mistakes made in that process.”