Friday, August 31, 2007

commute photo essay - riverside bikeways

Just off the Jingmei Bridge is the entrance to riverside bikeway system north. Northward, it's pretty impressive. There are still some spotty patches where there is construction, but otherwise it's arguably contiguous all the way to Danshui and to east Taipei along the Keelung River. "Arguably" because staying on the bikeways means going a way long distance, but some surface street cut-offs make it bearable.

Southward, it continues, but there's a break. Behind me there is nothing, but if you follow the river on the surface road, eventually you'll hit the continuation, but key sections are still under construction, so it's off-road-on-road. When it's done, it will go all the way out to the Taipei Zoo in Muzha.

That's the Roosevelt St./Beixing Rd. bridge in the background, from where the earlier lomo was shot.

And this is going under that bridge. The big mural and the elaborate entrance is supposed to indicate Taipei's pride in their bikeway system. The main flaw in the system is still access. In fact, I read an article not long ago indicating that the planners are aware of accessibility complaints and are scratching their heads about it.

Actually, for me, there's something distinctly Taiwanese about the ridiculous accessibility.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Land of Confusion (Genesis)
2. A Night Like This (Smashing Pumpkins)
3. Oh! Darling (live) (Bela Fleck & the Flecktones)
4. Side A - Live at Bourbon House (Gyoza Daioh)
5. On Earth (The Sundays)
6. Really Big Nothing (Elvis Costello & the Attractions)
7. Glass Onion (The Beatles)
8. Kataritsugu Koto (Hajime Chitose)
9. Angel Eyes (Sakura)
10. Tick Tock (The Vaughan Brothers)

Thursday, August 30, 2007

commute photo essay - out the door II

The alley takes me from the point right to the point left. Have to watch out for kids running out doors. This is their equivalent to a front lawn. OK, not really.

Then just a few feet from the alley is the Jingmei Bridge which takes me into Taipei.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Strange Loop (Liz Phair)
2. Russian Cowboy (Tokyo Ska Paradise Orchestra)
3. King Without A Crown (Matisyahu)
4. Shadow Waltz ("42nd Street")
5. Valley Girl (Frank Zappa)
6. Liberty (Steve Vai)
7. Being For the Benefit of Mr. Kite (take 7) (The Beatles - Anthology)
8. Vibrations (Helium)
9. Pennies (Smashing Pumpkins)
10. The Employment Pages (Death Cab for Cutie)

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

commute photo essay - out the door

Out my door, I usually take this alley next to my building to the Jingmei Bridge. Taking the road, I would be going against traffic, and the motor-scooter drivers in Taipei are reincarnations of the evil flying monkeys from "The Wizard of Oz". It's only a short way, but the evil flying monkeys on wheels makes it pretty much impossible.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Muqin ("Thoroughly Modern Millie")
2. Shoot a 45 (764-HERO)
3. Ain't Nothing Like the Real Thing (Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell)
4. What Am I Here For? (Duke Ellington)
5. Knead (Versus - Patrick)
6. Yes, My Heart ("Carnival")
7. Shock the Monkey (Peter Gabriel)
8. Sweet Thing (live) (David Bowie)
9. Kid Fears (Indigo Girls)
10. Butter (A Tribe Called Quest)

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Jingmei River

July 1, 2007 - Jingmei River, shooting east from the Beixin Road bridge. I usually walk on this bridge to get to a bus stop. That bridge seen is the Jingmei Bridge and is the one I take when I ride my bike or to run errands. I live on the right side in Xindian. The Jingmei night market is on the left a bit down.

OK, tomorrow starts a project.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Fashion Bleeds (Archers of Loaf)
2. Crowded Room (XTC)
3. Manteca (Dizzie Gillespie & His Orchestra)
4. Sekai Ni Ichitsu Dake No Hana (Makihara Noriyuki)
5. Jets (Blur)
6. #1 Must Have (Sleater-Kinney)
7. Funny How Time Flies (When You're Having Fun) (Stanley Clarke)
8. Mankind (Pearl Jam)
9. Gravel (live) (Ani DiFranco)
10. Title Track (Death Cab for Cutie)

Monday, August 27, 2007

Three (3) blurry indoor lomos

July 13, 2007 - Taiwan Storyland, a concept museum in Taipei, next door to the Shin Mitsukoshi department store near the Main Station. It's a museum of a period of time, depicting Taipei in the 60's, so the entire space is a recreation of streets and stores and merchandise of the time.

I was with classmates who are fantastic photographers, and there I was with my toy Fisheye 2.

There are more people in this lomo, but they were moving too fast to be captured in long exposure.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Within You, Without You (Instrumental) (The Beatles - Anthology)
2. Rest Of My Life (Rilo Kiley)
3. Where Is My Mind? (The Pixies)
4. Intuition (Leslie Feist)
5. Be My Girl - Sally (The Police)
6. Blind Love (Tom Waits)
7. Nihon Ichi Iikina Love Song (Bakufu Slump)
8. Hey! TAX (The Bubble Gum Brothers)
9. Soul Soldier (Throwing Muses)
10. Mandolinita (Sukay - Andean pan flute)

Sunday, August 26, 2007

My Room

July 11, 2007 - Hey, I know this place. It's my room! This is pretty much all there is to it, and all the space I need, really.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Love Buzz (Nirvana)
2. Mustt Mustt (Massive Attack Remix) (Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan)
3. Car Thief (The Beastie Boys)
4. Say It Isn't So (Hall & Oates)
5. Junk (The Beatles - Anthology)
6. Papa Legba (Talking Heads)
7. Little Amsterdam (Tori Amos)
8. Seven Day Weekend (Elvis Costello & the Attractions)
9. [Untitled] (Smashing Pumpkins)
10. Another Hundred People ("Company" - Sondheim)

Friday, August 24, 2007

Taida Main Library

July 10, 2007 - Taida Main Library central atrium, although doesn't an atrium require natural light? Anyway, not to be too critical about the architecture, this is a fantastic waste of prime indoor space. What's the point of this huge space right smack dab in the middle of the library main floor with nothing in it except people walking through? Sofas for a lounge area? Display cases? Piano bar? I vote piano bar.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Boating on Azure Waves (Gong Yi, Luo Shou-Cheng)
2. Till the End of the Day (live) (The Kinks)
3. Dig a Pony (The Beatles)
4. Richard III (Supergrass)
5. Manoir Des Mes Reves (Django Reinhardt)
6. Once I Had a Love (Blondie)
7. Miracles Out of Nowhere (Kansas)
8. Black Little Stray (Shannon Wright)
9. Underground (live) (Tom Waits)
10. Getsumen Butou (Tokyo Ska Paradise Orchestra)

Thursday, August 23, 2007

recent classmates

July 2, 2007 - Well, the last day of the semester is tomorrow, but here are the classmates I've hung out occasionally with this semester. This is in front of the main library with the sun setting behind palm trees. Santi, from Thailand, is on the left. We might stay in contact. On the left is Yumi, from Japan. I wouldn't mind, but my sense is probably not.

July 4, 2007 - At a Dante's coffeehouse on the Taida campus. I took two shots of this scene. The multiple exposure shot didn't come out. This is the long exposure shot with me holding the 2 pretty still and Yumi not moving at all. I think she's good at that. I have other low light shots of her in perfect focus because she wasn't moving. Danila, from Russia, already went back to his country earlier this week. He had to go finish college. Oy!

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Strings of Love (Edie Brickell & New Bohemians)
2. Romance in New York (Takeshi Yamaguchi)
3. White Pepper Ice Cream (Cibo Matto)
4. Strangled By the Stereo Wire (live) (Archers of Loaf)
5. Electioneering (Radiohead)
6. If I Could Talk I'd Tell You (The Lemonheads)
7. Three Hopeful Thoughts (Rilo Kiley)
8. Gold Rush Brides (10,000 Maniacs)
9. Cantata: Iphigenia in Brooklyn (P.D.Q. Bach)
10. Meeting Across the River (Bruce Springsteen)

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

reverse shots

June 24, 2007 - Standing on the Roosevelt Road overpass (actually Beixin Road, since it's in Xindian). Fuxing Road is going under. That's my building off-center left, with the mostly brown fascade. That top power line, where it meets the building (not the building behind), is my window, from where the below lomo was shot the next day on a new roll. I don't think I planned it that way.

June 25, 2007 - Fuxing Road below, Beixin Road overpass. The next day, on a new roll. Sunny morning, as opposed to a cloudy afternoon, which is how it's been almost every day this Summer. Works for me with afternoon classes and morning rides.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Penelope (Pinback)
2. The Queen of Detroit (+/-)
3. Omoide no Stardust (Southern All-Stars)
4. Rimbaud (Yuko Hara)
5. Return of the Tres (Delinquent Habits)
6. Cello Suite No. 4, VI. Gigue (J.S. Bach)
7. Am I Going Insane (Radio) (Black Sabbath)
8. Toriaezu Nan ka Tabeyou (Makihara Noriyuki)
9. Guiltiness (Bob Marley & the Wailers)
10. Angels Rush In (Versus)

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

新北投 II

June 30, 2007 - Xin Beitou Branch Public Library. It's brand new, opened this year. Very woodsy with a log cabin feel. In case you need to study after soaking in the hot springs.

The branch library even has an outdoor balcony. So if you want to steal books, you can just toss them from the balcony and go down to retrieve them. Just make sure to miss the brook. I read a chapter from a Harry Potter book while I was there. Good writing, but no different from many good books I read when I was a kid. She's no modern day Shakespeare, folks!

iTunes soundtrack:
1. 三天三夜 (A-Mei)
2. Anticipation (Blonde Redhead)
3. In Praise of Women ("A Little Night Music" - Sondheim)
4. Nindaran (Rinken Band)
5. If You Were Gay ("Avenue Q")
6. No Parachutes (Throwing Muses)
7. Rocks in My Bed (Duke Ellington)
8. Tell Me Why (Echobelly)
9. Cheap Day Return (Jethro Tull)
10. The Smartest Monkeys (XTC)

Monday, August 20, 2007

新北投 I

June 23, 2007 - Shuttle MRT to Xin Beitou in northern Taipei. Xin Beitou caters to Japanese tourists wanting to go to the hot springs that the area is famous for. Apparently they are well-known to Japanese tourists because during the Japanese occupation of Taiwan (1895-1945), government administrators developed the area and frequented the hot springs because it reminded them of hot springs in Japan. Or something.

Anyway, now the Japanese tourists are so valuable to the area, they built a shuttle MRT branch line from Beitou station to Xin Beitou station, which is less than a mile long. If the shuttle MRT isn't at the platform at Beitou, I'll usually just leave the station at Beitou station and walk, and I'll often save time.

June 30, 2007 - Xin Beitou, Taipei, Taiwan. I thought the MRT lomo was going to be a one-off odd post, but on the next roll, I found I also went to Xin Beitou the next week. I think this is now a museum in the park there. And I think it has something to do with water, but I've never been inside. I think there's something notable about this red brick architecture and that maybe the Japanese built it. So it may have been some government administration building. *yawn*

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Cosmic Sunshine Baby (French Dub Mix) (Nokko)
2. Breakthru (Queen)
3. Walking On the Moon (The Police)
4. Lowest Common Denominator (Unwound)
5. Mind Power (A Tribe Called Quest)
6. I'm Not Down (The Clash)
7. Euphoria (Delerium)
8. I'm Not a Saint (Echobelly)
9. Thela Hun Ginjeet (King Crimson)
10. Room for the Life (Kate Bush)

Saturday, August 18, 2007

烏來 II

June 17, 2007 - I know, this is like an exact repeat of the previous Wulai post. Although upon close inspection, this lomo is from a different bridge. I don't recall the layout of the road clearly since I was only there once and it started pouring rain, although not nearly as bad as it is now. Riding out a typhoon now, although I'm tempted to head out in a raincoat and play.

And, of course, the waterfall *presentation hands*:

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Mali (Charlie Hunter Quintet)
2. One for the Vine (Genesis)
3. Douda, DJ (Rankin' Taxi)
4. Saresta (Bela Fleck & the Flecktones)
5. Teddy Boy (The Beatles - Anthology)
6. Summertime Blues (live) (The Who)
7. Morning Glory (Versus)
8. Lonely Far (Anzen Chitai)
9. El Cuarto de Tula (Eliades Ochoa - "Buena Vista Social Club")
10. Shadow Dancing (Andy Gibb)

Thursday, August 16, 2007

new bike

Hee, so here's the new bike, this lomo taken just because I mentioned it in my last post and I was near the end of the roll in the 2.

It's a Giant OCR2 entry level road bike that I got for the equivalent for less than US$500. It's about the equivalent of my Peugeot in the U.S. that I bought for, I think, $700, and I think the OCR2 sells for $7-800 in the U.S.

I've already replaced the brake pads, which almost all user reviews agree feel "mushy" (I agree), and I'll probably replace the rear tire to natural rubber which has better grip. I already experienced riding down a mountain on a wet road, and faced with uphill car traffic, I jammed on the brakes and felt the rear wheel slide some indeterminate distance. It felt like six inches, but whatever it was, rear wheel lateral slide doesn't instill confidence!

iTunes soundtrack:
1. School (live) (Nirvana)
2. Get A Hold (A Tribe Called Quest)
3. Addison's City ("Bounce" - Sondheim)
4. Fishing Blues (Taj Mahal)
5. In the Neighborhood (Tom Waits)
6. Red Rain (live) (Peter Gabriel)
7. Phenomena (Yeah Yeah Yeahs)
8. Headlong (Queen)
9. Yesterday (The Beatles - Anthology)
10. Width of a Circle (live) (David Bowie)

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

烏來 I

June 18, 2007 - Wu Lai, Taiwan. South of Hsindian (where I live), south of Taipei. I took the bus there since it seemed so convenient. The bus stop is right near my house and the bus is the 烏來 bus, so I had fairly high confidence it would take me there. I almost got there on my beater bike once. I reached the border sign before turning back. I can make it there easily on my new bike, which I suppose I'll do soon. I estimate it will take 45-60 minutes to get there. Hm, I haven't mentioned the new bike, have I?

Anyway, Wu Lai may not even be in Taipei County. It's right on the bottom border of my Taipei County map. Maps. They don't love you like I love you. Wu Lai is tiny former aboriginal village popular for its hot springs and waterfall, *presentation hands*:

...the waterfall. Several second exposure because it was getting dark with rain clouds, bringing rains that poured down in torrents.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Over The Mountain (Ozzy Osbourne)
2. To Whom It May Concern (Black Sheep)
3. Nobody Home (live) (Pink Floyd)
4. Floating Dogs (Peter Gabriel - "Birdy")
5. The Body Electric (Rush)
6. Close My Eyes (Matisyahu)
7. Heart of Lothian (live) (Marillion)
8. C'mon Billy (PJ Harvey)
9. Might (live) (Archers of Loaf)
10. Variations on a Theme (Science vs. Romance) (Rilo Kiley)

Monday, August 13, 2007

法鼓山 III

June 17, 2007 - Dharma Drum Mountain Monastery main bell. The entire text of the Lotus Sutra is cast on the surface of the bell. The Lotus Sutra is a central text to the Mahayana branch of Buddhism, attributed as the Buddha's last sermon, but more likely it was, after centuries of being passed down by oral tradition, compiled to reflect the trend of that branch of Buddhism which was leaning towards a wider ministry.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Gun Street Girl (Tom Waits)
2. Old Medley (live) (Genesis)
3. Flavor of the Month (Black Sheep)
4. Sweet Talkin' Woman (Electric Light Orchestra)
5. Anoranzas (Sukay - Andean pan flute)
6. Sabbath Prayer ("Fiddler on the Roof")
7. The Boxer (live) (Simon & Garfunkel)
8. I Don't Wanna Die Anymore (New Radicals)
9. Something Was Missing ("Annie")
10. The Burrow (Throwing Muses)

Friday, August 10, 2007

法鼓山 II

June 17, 2007 - Jinshan, Taiwan. Leave it to me to visit a monastery and be impressed by the gigantic air-conditioners. They presumably cool the structures in the background, which are only the top floors of the main visitation buildings. On the left is the main Buddha hall, I think.

I have a thing about bells. It must mean something, yo. This is the main temple bell.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. David Watts (The Kinks)
2. Symphony No. 39, II. Andante Con Moto (Mozart)
3. You Rascal You (Django Reinhardt)
4. Waking the Witch (Kate Bush)
5. Stoicism (Shiina Ringo)
6. Might (Modest Mouse)
7. Street Fighting Man (The Rolling Stones)
8. Shadowtime (Siouxsie & the Banshees)
9. Out Like a Light (764-HERO)
10. Fly Me to the Moon (B-22A Type TV Version - "Neon Genesis Evangelion")

Thursday, August 09, 2007

法鼓山 I

June 17, 2007 - Jinshan, Taiwan. Taoist temple on the side road leading towards Dharma Drum Mountain Monastery.

Dharma Drum Mountain logo. This actually came before the Taoist temple above. It's on the main road to indicate the side road to get to the road that goes to the monastery.

I went to visit this monastery on a whim. Sort of, I decided I'd try to go the night before. From Taipei main station, the bus ride took like an hour and a half or more. I don't think it's that far, it's just that the bus stops a lot of times. I also didn't know the bus goes all the way to the monastery and only got a ticket to Jinshan city, and then walked, not knowing how to get there. With the help of bus maps and finally this big stone piece, I was able to find it no problem.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Rosie (Tom Waits)
2. Take Me To the River (live) (Talking Heads)
3. Hole In My Life (live) (The Police)
4. I Would Love To (Steve Vai)
5. Hold Me Now (Elastica)
6. Tokyo No Onna (Shiina Ringo)
7. Cousin Kevin (The Who)
8. Lime House (The Breeders)
9. Cherry Tree (10,000 Maniacs)
10. Crying Like a Church On Monday (New Radicals)

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Under the Fuhe Bridge

June 15, 2007 - Underneath the Fuhe Bridge. I stopped there along the riverside bikeway as the rain started. As the rain continued, I ended up locking my bike there and walking the rest of the way. Of course, I had an umbrella. In Taipei, always carry an umbrella.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Can't Keep It In (Cat Stevens)
2. Stand Up (Throwing Muses)
3. Free Bird ("Haibane Renmei")
4. 我要錢 (張震嶽)
5. Macilumah (David Darling & the Wulu Bunun)
6. Re-Enact the Crime (Spitz)
7. The Trial (live) (Pink Floyd)
8. The Heathen (Bob Marley & the Wailers)
9. Autumn Leaves (Chick Corea Akoustic Band)
10. He Is, She Is (live) (Mission of Burma)

Monday, August 06, 2007

(From) My Room

June 8, 2007- During morning rush hour, that strip of road often gets choked with motor scooters, which is what I was trying to capture. But the long exposure because it was raining and dark, and the changing of the light at the intersection got me this interesting result.

June 7, 2007 - Lying on my bed with nothing else to shoot.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Picture Book (The Kinks)
2. One (Sakura)
3. Quinn Beast (Archers of Loaf)
4. This Is The Day (The The)
5. The Miracle (Queen)
6. Humming ("Carnival")
7. Aubade (MC Solaar)
8. Symphony for Strings in Ab Minor (Shostakovich)
9. Asking For It (Hole)
10. Ava Adore (Smashing Pumpkins)

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Graduation Day

June 2, 2007 - I got to campus and surmised it was graduation day by the number of people in robes getting their pictures taken. Looks pretty sparse in this lomo, but behind me, Royal Palm Boulevard was jam packed with people. I didn't see any actual ceremonies, but knowing me, I got there late in the afternoon and they were all done.

Graduation ceremonies. Another year done. Another flock of chippies pushed out of the nest. And the flip side, in just a few months, fresh-faced snot-nosed high school grads will be starting it all. Damn, am I old! You see other students on campus and you think of them as your peers, but on graduation day you find the oldest of them are mere kids. Although admittedly there are quite a few of grad students on the Taida campus.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Anti-Pleasure Dissertation (Bikini Kill)
2. Wave of Mutilation (The Pixies)
3. Not Now John (Pink Floyd)
4. Hoarding It for Home (Mates of State)
5. Gun Shy (10,000 Maniacs)
6. Moonflower (The Maupin/Williams Project)
7. I Never (Rilo Kiley)
8. Magnum Opus (Kansas)
9. Turn Back, O Man ("Godspell")
10. Asylum (live) (Supertramp)

Saturday, August 04, 2007

Finishing up Kaohsiung May 2007

May 29, 2007 - I actually have a couple more from Kaohsiung, but I think I can tie them up with other lomos in the future. These are from the pagoda at Cheng Ching Lake in Kaohsiung. My cousin took me there. Neither of us had been there in a long, long time. This shot is looking southwest-ish towards Kaohsiung proper.

And there's the lake. The whole area is a park, requiring admission since we were on a motor-scooter. I brought back some paper photographs from my recent visit to the U.S. of when I was here when I was little. I thought my relatives might get a kick out of it. One is a group picture taken by the lake with this pagoda in the background. I was 11. Helluv cute, too, I should say so, since I've grown up to look all troll-like.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. The Gunner's Dream (Pink Floyd)
2. Sweet Sixteen (B.B. King)
3. Whip-Smart (Liz Phair)
4. Thank You (Dreams Come True)
5. The Spell You're Under (Versus)
6. Workin' on Leavin' the Livin' (Modest Mouse)
7. Wash of Water (Edith Frost)
8. With This Love (Peter Gabriel - "The Last Temptation of Christ")
9. Who Is It? (live) (Talking Heads)
10. (Meet) The Flintstones (Dirty Dozen Brass Band)

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Kaohsiung fotoroll continued

May 27, 2007 - The glassy water of Kaohsiung Harbor, later that day in the steaming hot afternoon. Actually, the water doesn't look like that, this just came out particularly well. Oh, and there's the Kaohsiung robot building in the background.

May 28, 2007 - This is the Confucius Temple at Kaohsiung, in case you forget what city you're in. Man, that English signage is tacky. I'm sure Confucius would be proud. It's by Lotus Lake in the northwestern section of the city. I got caught in the rain that day and ended up in a bubble tea shop to wait for the pouring rain to stop.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Kaze (Shoukichi Kina)
2. Gone B4 Yr Home (Le Tigre)
3. Maps (Yeah Yeah Yeahs)
4. Lately (Skunk Anansie)
5. Crosseyed and Painless (live) (Talking Heads)
6. Me and Sarah Jane (Genesis)
7. She's the One (Bruce Springsteen)
8. Mayonnaise (Smashing Pumpkins)
9. Eat the Menu (The Sugarcubes)
10. Affirmation (George Benson)