Saturday, September 30, 2023

Sculpting history

Bamiyan Buddha, before and after its destruction
(click image to enlarge)

History will be kind to me for I intend to write it.
- Winston Churchill -

With pencil, you can always erase.
- Sue Monk Kidd -

If you wish to forget anything on the spot,
make a note that this thing is to be remembered.
- Edgar Allan Poe -


Friday, September 29, 2023

Wednesday, September 27, 2023

Street food in Italy

As you might image, Italy appears to have some very good street food offerings. Above we have sausages, beef, pork and other substantial dishes. Below we have sweeter treats. Naturally, while wandering around and munching on your food you'll want some entertainment, so we end with a video of a rather unique busker drumming on some pipes.


Sunday, September 24, 2023

Jules-Descartes Férat's etchings

Click any image to enlarge

Jules-Descartes Férat was a 19th Century French artist known for his etchings of factories and workers. He also illustrated numerous books, noticeably for Jules Verne, Edgar Allen Poe and Victor Hugo. I found his factory illustrations to be the most interesting, although a lot of critics think his work illustrating Verne's Mysterious Island to be his best work.

Friday, September 22, 2023

Wednesday, September 20, 2023

Sunday, September 17, 2023

Myles Sullivan's canvas art prints

Click any image to enlarge

The visual arts are divided into two broad categories: fine art and commercial art. Fine art is what we generally consider art to be, an artist sitting in front of an easel slapping paint onto a canvas, while commercial art is understood to be advertising type of work. This distinction is blurred somewhat by artists using the canvas print technique to mass produce their artwork. 

Myles Sullivan is a painter/illustrator who sells a lot of work via canvas prints. If you search his name  you'll see many retailers selling his pieces. These examples are from a series of mid-20th century retro works he's known for. They're a sort of film noir style mixed with the feel of James Bond audition tapes. I picture them adorning the walls of hipster bachelor pads, but I might be misreading the demographics of his audience.

Friday, September 15, 2023

Barrio Calavera

Get ready for a reversed weekend with the Kumbiamerikan Rockers
featuring 'El Macha' Chico Trujillo.


Wednesday, September 13, 2023

Walking in Ushuaia, Tierra del Fuego

Previously we've strolled around Nuuk, Greenland. Today we head to the opposite side of the Americas to tour Ushuaia, the capital of Tierra del Fuego. It claims to be the southernmost city on Earth. It was originally founded by British missionaries in the 19th century and later absorbed by Argentina. In the early 20th century it mainly served as a penal colony. Today it is a tourist destination, and its port handles a number of cruise ships.

The walk, which takes place in light snow flurries (which, as Florida boy, give me the heebie-jeebies), starts on a commercial street, wends down to the water's edge, and then back up into the town. It is a pleasant looking little city.


Monday, September 11, 2023

September 11, 2001

Firefighters responding to the aftermath of the 9-11 attack
(click image to enlarge)

Adrienne Walsh, a fireman, on his experiences on 9-11 

You could see Manhattan and then not see Manhattan, and all of a sudden I looked up and there was just this explosion of confetti in the air. And I thought that was the strangest sight I had ever seen because, you know, confetti—certainly if there was a parade or something that you would have known of, but there was nothing I knew of. I thought, "That's bizarre." It was a tremendous amount of paper. And I couldn't see anything else because at this point, I had inched behind a loft building again, and of course, the radio came on and interrupted and said that there had been reports of a plane going into the Trade Center. And as we inched along again, I could see then three floors of fire in the Trade Center. And I thought to myself, "That's really bad." Because it's a self-contained building and fire—it should be fire on one floor, not fire on many floors. If you have fire on many floors, that's a serious, serious, serious problem.

When you got to City Hall, I was riding on the outside of the rig. 

And I remember when you got to City Hall, the—it's almost as if you entered—it's almost as if it was a curtain, and you walked into a curtain. The sky disappeared. There was air and bright light on this side, and there was just gray dust that you could barely see on this side. It was just like walking through a theatrical curtain. There's these six inches of dust on the ground. We parked right across from the plaza. And I remember getting out, I had no mask, because our rig was already down there, our guys were already down there. So I went to the back of the rig to try to see if there was another mask, another air-pak for me. And I remember going around to the rig, around the backside of the rig, and as I got to the backside of the rig, I looked up, and I don't know why I looked up, because I didn't hear anything.

But I saw what I can only describe as almost like a tornado hurtling at me. Just this cloud of dust that had to be over 100 feet in the air, and it was literally circling, and it was just bearing down. I mean, I'd never seen anything like that and anything move as fast as that, and I turned around and I yelled, "Run, run Cap, run!" 'Cause the captain was behind me. And he looked up—we all took off down the block, and I thought—I honestly thought in the midst of all that, "If this is going to come down and it's going to fall all at once as a building—if I beat the cloud, I'll beat the building." And I said to myself as I turned and started to run, "I'm not gonna beat this cloud. It's just moving too fast."

I remember making it through the cloud, and I remember walking, trying to walk through this—the amount of debris—it's unfathomable. And I remember drawing a line in the middle of my brain and putting those that I thought were dead on one side and those that I thought had a chance on the other. 


Friday, September 08, 2023

Allí donde tu sabes

Get ready for a languid weekend with Juanin Navarro, Felipe Huenuñir,
Jorge Lobos, Dante Escorza, and Elías Zamora


Wednesday, September 06, 2023

Rainy days in Nepal

These are a few videos of a village in a valley in Nepal on rainy days. The people seem to be primarily herders, although some cultivation also takes place. The scenery is frequently spectacular. That much rain would drive me crazy, but the villagers seem quite cheerful and unbothered by it all.

They are all from the YouTube channel VillageLifeNepal. If you're interested, there are longer and less rainy videos there.

Sunday, September 03, 2023

Labor Day and traumatized actresses

Rachel Zegler on the picket line
(click image to enlarge)

If I’m going to stand there 18 hours in a dress of an iconic Disney princess, I deserve to be paid for every hour that it is streamed online. - Rachel Zegler 


Labor Day is an odd holiday. For most people today it is just a long weekend that marks the end of summer. However, it had its birth in the late 19th century labor movement. In fact, the first Labor Day observances were actually strikes. It wasn't until 1894 that President Grover Cleveland, in an act of political pandering, signed into law the federalizing of the holiday.

The original labor movement, which fought for better working conditions, lower hours, and better pay, had a lot of support. That support has dwindled due to their goals being met and ever-increasing corruption in the unions. 

This Labor Day there are two prominent strikes happening: the Screen Writers Guild of America and the Screen Actors Guild. I doubt anybody, aside from the picketer's mothers, really care about these two strikes. The studios finances are sketchy enough that the walk-out may have a point, but still, this is far from downtrodden blue-collar workers looking for a fairer labor deal. These are people in a highly sought after field -- supply and demand and all that.

Which brings us to Rachel Zegler, the actress pictured above. As one expects of a Hollywood actress, she's an insufferable bubblehead. Instead of standing in solidarity with the underpaid writers and other peons in the studios, she dragged out a molecule-sized violin and made it all about herself. Horror of horrors, she had to stand around in a dress for hours as they filmed her. Sounds to me like she wants to get replaced by an AI version of herself and just cash the checks. She such a babbling idiot that she's unintentionally entertaining in a 'Plan 9 from Outer Space' sort of a way. 

The reputation of Labor Unions has dropped so low that their holiday, Labor Day, isn't even about them anymore. At any rate, enjoy your Labor Day. As you grill your hotdogs and swill your beer, try to remember all the poor actresses forced to stand around wearing dresses and count your blessings. 

Friday, September 01, 2023