“Kon-Tiki” is a fictionalized account of the Norwegian experimental ethnographer Thor Heyerdahl’s 4300 mile journey in a balsa raft over 65 years ago.
Academy Award Best Foreign Language Film nominee “Kon-Tiki” is a fictionalized account of the Norwegian experimental ethnographer (and subsequent Oscar Award winner) Thor Heyerdahl’s trans-Pacific journey in a balsa raft over 65 years ago. It’s also a Scandinavian box office sensation and the first Norwegian film to nab nominations from both Oscar and the Golden Globes. I spoke with the film’s co-directors, slated to helm a major Hollywood movie next, about their own trip from Norway to L.A.’s wild west.
Austria’s annual body painting festival in Portschach am Worthersee is a unique festival for an art that is distinctly under-appreciated.
Body painting has such an artistic romantic and dreamy ring to it that when I was invited to sing at the world body painting festival, I couldn’t say no. One of the world’s most unusual festivals, the event is held at a beautiful town called Portschach am Worthersee in southern Austria, where Austria, Italy and Slovenia come together. The surrounding area is absolutely stunning, a picturesque town on a beautiful lake, with beautiful cycle paths and the weather is unbelievable at 30 degrees.
The anarchist ideology invoked as justification for Culatto’s treatment is a common whipping boy for the left and right alike.
There was once a bargain offered to the more privileged inhabitants of the world’s more privileged nation states. It went something like this: We will treat people with brown skin and funny clothes who talk funny and follow a funny religion as if they were criminals. We will at worst lock them up without actually following the normal procedure for dealing with suspected criminal activity, and at best just make their lives more inconvenient and demeaning on a fairly regular basis. Freedoms that are promised to you, the white-skinned, clean-cut, affluent men and women who speak English fluently and are nationals of the right countries, will not be afforded to them. You can travel with ease around most parts of the world; they will be faced with constant restrictions and obstacles.
The perfect ambassador for all things Sweden is famous for, Ace of Base’s Ulf Elkberg takes us on a tour of Stockholm and shares us some of his secrets about the town.
Famous for its music, design and enviable social democracy, Sweden is an idyllic-yet-modern country to spend some time in. I caught up with Ulf Ekberg, best known for being co-founder of Ace Of Base. One of Sweden’s greatest international successes, they are in the Guinness book of World Records for having the best-selling debut. He’s also famous for having girls scream over his good looks, and while he knows how to party, he also happens to be a great businessman—he’s been Volvo’s and Ericsson’s ambassador. In a way he’s the perfect ambassador for all things Sweden is famous for. Ulf takes us on a tour of Stockholm and shares us some of his secrets about the town. The way Ulf describes Sweden with such an eye and detail; it could only be an artist talking.
After so many years of hearing Palin speak about “Real America,” it’s undeniably exciting to see her actually try to define the damn thing.
There is, perhaps, no politician more poetic than Sarah Palin. Yes, yes, I know: Contain your rage. What I mean by this is that Sarah Palin simply does not think in prose. Not for her, the worked-out, comprehensible statement; not for her, the careful chain of verifiable logic; not for her, the facts. She thinks in big, startling images and portentous phrases; she is capable of transforming nearly anything she touches, no matter how mundane, into a near-mythic entity, charged with emotion and significance. America becomes “Real America.” The media becomes “The Gotcha Media.” Blame for something she does not wish to be blamed for becomes “Blood Libel.” Although that last one… well, the Palin approach to language can backfire.
Still, after so many years of hearing Palin speak about “Real America,” it’s undeniably exciting to see her actually try to define the damn thing. Her current bus tour — devoted to “the fundamental restoration of America!” With Palin as pagan Earth Goddess, spreading fertility unto the wasteland with each blessed visitation — has the aim of visiting American landmarks and historical sites. So that Palin might pay homage to them, sure. But also, so that she might let us know what she perceives those essential American landmarks and historical sites to be.
So, for once and all, we have a chance to know exactly what Sarah Palin means when she speaks about “America.” And now, with the tour just begun, it is time for us to figure out what “Sarah Palin’s America” really is.
I like the idea of Bowie the man but what I wanted from London was the glam-rock god (or ghost).
Somewhere in London it stopped seeming like a coincidence anymore and started to feel like something I should pay attention to.
“China Girl” haunted my steps from my arrival. It showed up on shuffle on my iPod and as background music in coffee shops and bars and one lovely little left-wing bookstore, reminding me of a boy who pressed his finger to my lips (and nothing else) as he argued with me that no, really, it’s an ANTI-racist song. Because the girl tells Bowie “oh baby, just you shut your mouth.”
(And in the version on the Reality Tour record he sneers in her voice “oh baby, just shut the f*ck up.”)
I was in London to see friends, to escape the day job, to lose myself in a city I didn’t know and yes, to write. Because that’s always part of my plan, wherever I go. I didn’t go there looking for the ghost of David Bowie or some long-lost god of Glam Rock. But they were there waiting for me, regardless. And each replay of “China Girl” made me, the American abroad, laugh at myself until I finally embraced it, told the story of the old crush and in doing so let it go, and went exploring by myself to the tune of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars. (more…)
Every element of sight and sound works in harmony to cast thousands into personal raves at the earliest of hours.
What is it that Jarvis Cocker sang in that Pulp song? Oh yeah. Tugging on strands of blissed-out escapism, Cocker links rave’s field-trip culture to hanging around aimlessly on grass, neatly summing up every major (and minor) English festival as he does so. For some the summer music season feels like a passage into an untold future, while for many many more it’s just about hanging around on former farmland, watching some bands.
I’d had the Primavera festival’s merits rammed down my throat for a long year, but besides the quality of bands the one thing that kept reappearing was the twisted scale and space it sits inside. Between all of the talk of concrete and structure it seemed the strangeness of being Not In A Field had been overwhelming for some. But could it really have changed the music/audience/experience as much as they claimed? (more…)
I suspect that the next series of airline attacks may be carried out by white Westerners.
The location is any international airport in 2010. The scene is one of controlled chaos. People are pushed, prodded, searched, questioned and scanned. Row upon row of irritated passengers interact sullenly with overworked security personnel.
You straighten your shoulders, hoist your backpack and walk straight through. After all, this isn’t meant for you. Airport security is searching for Edward Said’s ‘other’ – the stranger, the foreigner, the potential terrorist. Your fast moving queue whisks you out of the claustrophobic security zone in minutes. (more…)
There was a very intense checkpoint that we had to cross.
“A sunny place for shady people.” Somerset Maugham’s famous remark about Monaco can easily be applied to Northern Cyprus. Yet it looks as though it’s all about to change.
The Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus is not known as a famous holiday destination these days. It’s a well-kept secret, and there are not many tourists. Northern Cyprus has a reputation as a destination for criminals on the run, and it’s unrecognized by most countries worldwide. The country cannot export anything and there are no direct flights – you have to stop over in Turkey to get there. The most important thing is, flights are still cheap to Ercan International Airport, it’s a beautiful, unspoilt place and an extra stop on a plane might be worth it. If you want to avoid the stop over, just fly to the south of the island and drive to the north.
Soon, there will be a referendum on whether or not Cyprus will become one whole country. Regardless of the outcome, I think it’s fair to say that the north of the island will gain recognition worldwide. Until that day comes, it’s possible to buy a 3-bedroom villa with a pool for 50,000 pounds. Prices would triple after unification. You heard it here first.
If you’re going to visit the towers, bring a book – the wait to get up there can last for hours.
Flying into Kuala Lumpur, the capital of Malaysia, I saw a concrete concrete jungle surrounded by a green belt down below. Upon landing, the weather was warm and tropical. The express train from the airport to the center of town was thankfully air-conditioned. As it whizzed through palm tree plantations, I realized I could have easily taken a taxi, as the traffic looked perfect.
I staggered to my hotel exhausted and ready to collapse. It was the longest flight I had ever taken (12 hours non-stop from London). The hotel staff gushed over me, noticing how exhausted I looked. Their sweet manner really made an impression, as you don’t encounter that sort of treatment everywhere.
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