Friday, September 15, 2006

Oompa Loompa Pygmy Hippies

When I was a young child I was told three things about hippies by my rather conservavtive grandfather: 1) they had long hair, 2) they said "peace" a lot while waving their fingers in the peace sign formation, 3) they wanted to steal your money and make you one of them.

This was enough to make me fear hippies. In my 4 year old mind, I was convinced for some reason that hippies could seep up through the corner between the floor and the wall. With the iron clad logic of that age, I determined my best course of action was to make my older sister sleep on that side of the bed. Me, I wanted to be able to run right into my mom's rooms to escape the evil hippies.

Roald Dahl didn't seem to have a fixation on hippies. His original oompa loompas were African pygmies. These were changed to hippies by his publisher seeking to avoid controversy:

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Japanese Hooters and Toilets

My good friend, Tree Cat, tells me the Japanese know their toilets. They've gone beyond the bidet to include massage seats and a bunch of other stuff. Now they've added MP3 players.

The Japanese also know how to do Hooters with style:

I'd like the melons, the coconuts and a cup of tea, please.


This is what I live with...

Andre Cypriano

Amazing photographs of Brazil. Black and white, etherial, haunting, editorial, heart rending, breath taking.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Ghost Stations

I went to Europe a long time ago, right before the fall of the Wall. Got to go through Checkpoint Charlie and have a bunch of my hard earned money turned into valueless East German dollars. The Berlin underground was built before the wall went up with some of the stations ending up on the wrong side. These became ghost stations. Unused and cobwebby with a single armed guard stationed at the information booth. Trains didn't stop. Since the Wall came down, these stations are being used again. Eventually I'll go back to Berlin and get off at one just because it's possible again.

The London Underground is a marvel. It's a world unto itself. If you ever go to London buy an A-Z (pronounced "A to Zed") and a day pass. There are ghost stations here too, but for other reasons. Here's a site about those: