June 2007


i’m not sure if this is flickr or yahoo, but there are very serious problems with censorship going on. apparently, if you you live in germany, singapore, and some other countries you can’t access any images unless they are marked as safe. this you tube video gives a good overview of the problems and why people are angry:

there’s also a group on flickr devoted to the censorship issue. from what i’ve read the staff have been pretty unsupportive. when they do come forward i’m not sure how much they can be believed. are they sincere or just trying to keep their jobs? i’m still on flickr, and still uploading pictures, but if these issues don’t get resolved i may jump ship whether my pro account has expired or not. i know a lot of people have left for ipernity.

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this is pretty interesting. the development of the polaroid design from the designer. i’d love to have some of the things in this sx-70 accessory kit. moominstuff has a companion post about some of his polaroid packaging. via filmwasters.com.

something for the andy warhol wannabe. in polaroid circles this is considered one of the worst polaroid cameras, but i suspect there is someone out there with too much money on their hands that’ll buy it just so they can say they own warhol’s camera. crazy. via filmwasters.com.

edward ka-spel joins the dresden dolls on stage for a number:

hmm, maybe i need to pick up some dresden dolls. speaking of edward ka-spel, i’ve been out of the loop a bit but it looks like he has three new releases out: dream logic part one(a collection of rare and/or previously vinyl only tracks), melancholics anonymous, and happy new year which i guess isn’t really that new, but i somehow didn’t know about it. those first two links have sound samples you can play. i listened to some of melancholics anonymous last night and it sounds to be just the kind of electronics i’ve been craving. i’ve been trying not to use my credit card, but i suspect i may have to splurge and pick up those first two. happy new year is just a little too rich for my blood i’m afraid.

8 craziest cults. one of the taiwanese cults even made the cut(no. 3). i use that as an example when i’m trying to explain what a cult is to my students. i’m a little surprised scientology didn’t make the cut, but i guess they haven’t been involved in any mass suicides. no. 6 inspired a song by the legendary pink dots:

The Order of the Solar Temple was a secret society based upon the new age myth of the continuing existence of the Knights Templar. According to historians, OTS was started by Joseph Di Mambro and Luc Jouret in 1984 in Geneva. The two convinced their followers that they were members of the 14th Century Christian Order of the Knights Templar during a previous life, and that Di Mambro’s daughter Emanuelle was “the cosmic child”, and that she was the result of a virgin birth. She would lead them after death to a planet which was said to orbit around the star Sirius, but in order to do so they would have to die in a fire, as was prophesied for the end of the world.

…mass suicides and murders were conducted at two villages in Switzerland, and at Morin Heights — 15 inner circle members committed suicide with poison, 30 were killed by bullets or smothering, and 8 others were killed by other causes. Many of the bodies when found were drugged, possibly to prevent the members from objecting. The buildings were then set on fire by timer devices, purportedly as one last symbol of the group’s purification. In western Switzerland, 48 members of a sect died in another apparent mass murder-suicide. Many of the victims were found in a secret underground chapel lined with mirrors and other items of Templar symbolism. The bodies were dressed in the order’s ceremonial robes and were in a circle, feet together, heads outward, most with plastic bags tied over their heads; they had each been shot in the head. It is believed that the plastic bags were a symbol of the ecological disaster that would befall the human race after the OTS members moved on to Sirius.

excerpt from the legendary pink dots lyrics:

Take a seat son. There’s something I really must tell you. Now me and
your Ma, we’ve always been positive people, haven’t we son? But for the
last year or so, it’s all been a facade. We’ve been putting on a brave
face. It’s a sick world we live in. This is a sick neighborhood we live
in. And there comes a time when you just have to stand up, take your
life into your own hands, decide for change. That’s why me and your Ma,
have decided to go to a new place. It’s a place called Sirius. Now you
can’t drive to Sirius, son. Can’t walk there, can’t get an aeroplane
there. Only one way to Sirius son, and think of it a bit like closing
your eyes on all the sickness and the degradation, and when you open
them up again, you’re in this garden! Where everybody there loves you,
where everybody supports everybody else. It’s that kind of place! So now
I’ve come to the point of this little talk. Are you coming along?
Think about it. I don’t want to force you into anything. I’m not that
kind of father, am I? I’ve never forced you into anything in your entire
life. I’ve only ever been there for you. Making sacrifices for you. When
you were down, when you needed someone, who was there with a shoulder to
cry on? Me, always me! Always there for you, always listening. And now,
just once, I’m asking you to listen to me. What’s it gonna be? Don’t
look at me like that, son! You can trust me!

i’d heard that the song had been based roughly on a real event, but didn’t really know the details until now. via obiter dictum.

today is the final day of the dragon boat holiday. instead of taking in some dragon boat races we drove up to lugang. on the way there peter’s sister called and asked what we were doing. since we were all heading to the same basic area, we decided to meet up in lugang. in total there were six of us. before we reached lugang, we stopped by a reststop. reststops in taiwan tend to be a bit different from the ones in the states. they often have a gas station attached, bathrooms, and some sort of food court. at this one we found this funky little train that contains famous crackers from chiayi. it was only 150 nt which is quite cheap so i couldn’t pass on it.

in lugang we wandered around taking in temples and checking out what the various vendors were selling. one vendor had these sort of voodoo doll keyrings for sale. i ended up coming away with two:

i nicknamed the one with all the hair lily after peter’s sister that was with us today.

after the vendor we came upon a ringtoss game. i usually don’t pay much attention to these, but this one gave you a decent size bucket of rings to toss for 50 nt. the six of us split two buckets. i of course suck at the ring toss and didn’t win anything, but nearly everyone else did, and they gave me the toys they didn’t want:

on sunday evening peter and decided on a whim to drive up to chiayi to have a look around. while there we stumbled upon a nifty toy store. it wasn’t the greatest toy store, but what i liked about it was there were some things that were priced on the cheapside. this of course lead to me buying some things. sorry for the poor quality pictures, just snapped them real quick on my cell phone. the peanuts keyrings were a bit strange. no sally or linus, but a bunch of incarnations of snoopy or distant relatives. but who’s that fat dog between charlie brown and lucy?

i always forget what this character’s name is, but it’s a famous japanese comic and cartoon. in this toy he is cleaning the floor. you can make him move so he’ll scoot along the floor.

and finally i picked up this little green alien. i’m sure he must be from something, but to me he’s just a cool green alien.

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