Sunday, December 28, 2008

July 7, 2007 - Overtaking someone on the Xindian riverside bikeway close to Wanhua.

And here is definitely by Wanhua. This is right by a major entrance gate, and there's sort of a plaza, so a lot of people congregate around there. Meaning cyclists should slow down and watch out for people trying to get kites in the air.

As I've mentioned, I think Taipei has a world class riverside bikeway system, which may or may not make up for the bike-unfriendliness of Taipei streets. And greater Taipei continues to extend and develop their riverside parks and bikeways.

In these lomos, I was riding by the Xindian River to my left. Across the river, outside of Taipei in Taipei County, a different entity than Taipei City, there's also another great bikeway, but when I last rode on it a year and a half ago, it only went to the end of the Xindian River, where it flows into the Danshui River, along with the Dahan River, which comes from a different direction.

Today, I found that I can continue on the other side beyond the end of the Xindian River, where it turns left and goes along the Dahan River. It was really excellent finding this new bikeway, parts of which are still being developed, and that it almost goes as far as I've been down the Dahan River on the opposite bank to Ying Ge. Ying Ge is the last town in Taipei County in that direction, more than 20 miles from where I live, making it a 40+ mile ride.

Once I got to the end of the bikeway in Tucheng, I was able to get on the roads and find my way to Ying Ge, and rode back north along the west bank of the Dahan River. It's not perfect, there are some things that greater Taipei can do better, but it's definitely impressive and probably a lot better than what many cities offer in terms of recreational cycling.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. A Little Buzz (Victor Wooten)
2. Intergalactic (The Beastie Boys)
3. Poor Napoleon (Elvis Costello & the Attractions)
4. Warrior (Yeah Yeah Yeahs)
5. The Long and Winding Road (The Beatles - Anthology)
6. Harbor Wind (Keiko Matsui)
7. Torikoshikurou (Shiina Ringo)
8. Try Not to Breath (R.E.M.)
9. Joyful Girl (live) (Ani DiFranco)
10. Whipping (live) (Pearl Jam)

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

July 7, 2008 - My shadow along the riverside bikeways.

Outhouses along the riverside bikeway.

It's odd how everything is politicized in Taiwan. There was a fire in the National Taiwan University Hospital last week and a patient died in it. The daughter of the victim held a press conference blaming the hospital and had a member of one of the main political parties with her, as if blaming the other party for the fire.

I thought the U.S. was bad about shameless politicization. It seems that sort of thing happens more here than other places. It could be politicians are particularly opportunistic and swoop down on personal tragedies to push forward some political agenda.

I also read that it's the same with public TV here. It's not independent like it relatively is in the U.S., U.K., Japan and other places. Public TV which is supposed to be public interest for the betterment of society and not corporate profit, is apparently used as a mouthpiece for whatever political party is in power here.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. The Infamous Date Rape (A Tribe Called Quest)
2. The Giddybug Gallop (Duke Ellington)
3. Walk On (U2)
4. Digging in the Dirt (live) (Peter Gabriel)
5. Double Suicide (Mercy Killing) (Versus)
6. 4th of July (Aimee Mann)
7. Not a Day Goes By ("Merrily We Roll Along" - Sondheim)
8. Cowtown (They Might Be Giants)
9. Surf (Sakura)
10. Looking for Someone (Genesis)

Saturday, December 20, 2008

July 7, 2008 - Over the shoulder shot along the Xindian Riverside bikeway.

The bikeways can get crowded on weekends with families and groups of friends, making them not the ideal place to, you know, "ride". You have to remember they're for recreation, people are recreating. En masse. If a cyclist wants to "ride", they should stay off the bikeways on weekends. A measure of patience and tolerance is required, safety should always come first, especially when children are involved.

There was a picture in the newspaper in a local English-language newspaper this past Friday of a college friend of mine at Oberlin, Bi-khim Hsiao. She was in the news because she used to be in the legislature and she's still involved with the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), and she was trying to convince a judge against the continued detention of another DPP member who is under arrest and investigation for corruption. The article was only partly about that, the headline was that her bike was stolen. Anyway, the funny thing for me was that she was wearing a pink Oberlin College sweatshirt!

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Yes, My Heart ("Carnival")
2. Secret World (Peter Gabriel)
3. Man Overboard (Blondie)
4. Sway (Shriekback)
5. Scratch-N-Sniff (Stevie Ray Vaughan & Double Trouble)
6. It Takes All Kinds (Aimee Mann)
7. Providence (Sonic Youth)
8. Addison's Trip ("Bounce" - Sondheim)
9. Mind Power (A Tribe Called Quest)
10. 我要快樂 (A-Mei)

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

June 29, 2008 - Street shooting at the corner of Civic Boulevard and Keelung Road. The structure just visible on the left is the elevated freeway over parts of Keelung Road.

Keelung Road just south of Zhongxiao East Road with Taipei 101 behind the street signs. I remember being frustrated at not shooting very much, so that day I made a point of taking whatever random shot occurred to me while riding along. But only these two.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Picture Book (live) (The Kinks)
2. Real Love (Smashing Pumpkins)
3. UFO TOFU (Bela Fleck & the Flecktones)
4. What People Are Made of (Modest Mouse)
5. Back in N.Y.C. (live) (Genesis)
6. Sensation (The Who)
7. The Only Way (Hymn) (Emerson, Lake & Palmer)
8. Leave It (Yes)
9. Home (Kristin Hersh)
10. Symphony No. 2, II. Larghetto (Beethoven)

Saturday, December 13, 2008

June 25, 2008 - Couple of sneaked shots inside the Fine Arts Museum. Pretty institutional. I should've sneaked shots in the galleries. I mean, if you're going to sneak shots where photography is prohibited, then go all-out, you know? None of this trying-to-be-respectful crap!

I'm not doing well with getting a fourth roll shot before the end of the year. Even though I'm only working weekends, I'm still having trouble switching my sleeping hours back to something resembling "normal". I'm also still sleeping a lot more than I'm used to - some lingering cold maybe. I'm not getting out nearly enough or early enough to shoot.

The band suggested taking a break in January and just concentrating on learning new songs. I'm going to come out against the idea. A month of just rehearsal with no gigs/pay sounds excruciating to me. I also don't know when I'll be moving to Kaohsiung, but I'm thinking I definitely will be moving there next year. So it would be better for all parties concerned that they take the break at the same time they find a new drummer. It just makes sense.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. No. 13 Baby (The Pixies)
2. Sanya (Kohachiro Miyata - shakuhachi)
3. 讚仰三寶之歌 (郭孟雍)
4. 真夜中は純潔 (Mayonaka wa Junketsu) (Shiina Ringo)
5. Private Idaho (B-52s)
6. Everything's Just Wonderful (Lily Allen)
7. Too Drunk to Fuck (Dead Kennedys)
8. The King of the Mosh Pit (Tokyo Ska Paradise Orchestra)
9. Scissor Man (Primus)
10. Symphony No. 4, III. Allegro vivace (Beethoven)

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

June 25, 2008 - Taipei's Fine Arts Museum in Yuanshan district, although Yuanshan is not officially a district. It's the area that straddles the Keelung River along Zhongshan North Road.

Plane about to land at Taipei's Songshan Airport. Shot through the MRT tracks near Yuanshan MRT station.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Down On the Corner (Creedence Clearwater Revival)
2. Sweet Black Angel (The Rolling Stones)
3. (Wish I Could Fly Like) Superman (The Kinks)
4. Silverfish (Belly)
5. There Shall Be No Night (Duke Ellington)
6. Caffeine (Kristin Hersh)
7. You Know My Name (Look Up the Number) (The Beatles - Anthology)
8. More Sweet Soul (Pretty Girls Make Graves)
9. Love Struck Baby (Stevie Ray Vaughan & Double Trouble)
10. The Moon (Cat Power)

Saturday, December 06, 2008

June 23, 2008 - Waiting on my bike at the intersection at Minquan East Road and Fuxing North Road, looking south, on my way to work.

September 3, 2008 - Waiting on my bike at the intersection at Minquan East Road and Fuxing North Road, looking north, on my way to work.

This partly explains why I've shot so little this year. Work and routine makes me a creature of habit, doing the same basic thing day in and day out. Actually, it's not that bad, I do vary, but once I've found a template, I can easily find and fall back in it. I think law school did that to me.

Like I've mentioned, there is a route to work where I know all the lights, and therefore how to ride on any section of road to beat a light, or to not waste my energy. I know never to rush to get to this light because I'll never beat it, and I even have time to pull out the fisheye.

These are probably even just about at the same time of late afternoon, the first one just after the solstice, the second a few weeks before the equinox.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Portions for Foxes (Rilo Kiley)
2. Cash Car Star (Smashing Pumpkins)
3. Stokfel Jive (Mahlathini & the Mahotella Queens)
4. Karn Evil 9 - 1st Impression, part 2 (Emerson, Lake & Palmer)
5. Technopolis (Yellow Magic Orchestra)
6. Dirty Fingernails (Modest Mouse)
7. Starman (David Bowie)
8. Kiss Off (Violent Femmes)
9. Baby's Got a Brand New Hairdo (Elvis Costello & the Attractions)
10. Well-Tempered Clavier, Book 1, Prelude #16 (J.S. Bach)

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

May 18, 2008 - Minzu East Road, shooting north at the Fine Arts Museum park.

Wow, this year's almost over and I'm still posting lomos from the first roll I completed this year. I just finished shooting the third, and I'm making it a goal to shoot a full roll over the month of December. For the past 2 years I've been shooting 11 rolls per year!

At least I did quit my job for most part. I'll still go in on weekends, but I'm hoping to phase that out soon, too. And I'm just getting over a nasty cold, so I'm feeling this sense of renewal. I just spent 3 solid days in bed watching TV. Yay! Well, plus movies and DVDs.

I'm probably also gonna quit the band next year, too. Which means I'll have nothing to do in Taipei, so I'll probably move to Kaohsiung soon after that happens.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Given to Fly (live) (Pearl Jam)
2. Penelope (live) (Pinback)
3. Absentee (Shannon Wright)
4. Groovin' High (Dizzy Gillespie & His Orchestra)
5. One of the Few (Pink Floyd)
6. Public Enemy No. 1 (Public Enemy)
7. Shigatsu no Ame (Dreams Come True)
8. Who's the Thief? ("Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat")
9. Tapestry (Carole King)
10. On the Other Side of Paradise (The Neville Brothers)

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Lomo shooting had become so sparse that I couldn't even keep track of when I was shooting the same subject matter. These two are a month apart, but only two frames apart on the roll. Riding to work, I often passed in front of Taipei's old airport - Songshan Airport, which now covers shorter haul flights. Most international flights now fly in and out of Taoyuan International Airport in Taoyuan County, about 40 minutes away from Taipei.

view 1

May 18, 2008

view 2

June 22, 2008

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Hana (花) (A Flower in Every Heart) (Shoukichi Kina & Champloose)
2. Seven Spanish Angels (Ray Charles w/Willie Nelson)
3. Down (Suede)
4. Mary Anne With the Shaky Hands (The Who)
5. Tu Eres Mentirosa (Sukay - Andean pan flute)
6. The Girls Want to Be With the Girls (live) (Talking Heads)
7. I Heard It Through The Grapevine (Marvin Gaye)
8. Yatara-chan's Annoying Noise (Katra Turana - Japanese underground)
9. Blow Wind Blow (Tom Waits)
10. For Crying Out Loud (Meat Loaf)

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

August 5, 2008 - And here's a close up of where I live, taken several months later. Yes, I've devoted my life to the service of God. Jesus is my Master and I am His slave. Actually, I live in the green building on the left, and I chose the room that doesn't look out over the church (it was the smaller room).

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Mean Mr. Mustard (The Beatles - Anthology)
2. Complicated Life (The Kinks)
3. Someday We'll Know (New Radicals) (the drummer in this video is playing blueberry Yamaha Beech Customs, the exact same drums I have!)
4. Shrug (live) (Ani DiFranco)
5. All That Jazz ("Chicago")
6. Your Mother Should Know (The Beatles)
7. Tension Living With Muscle (Rebecca)
8. London Boy (Rebecca)
9. Fly Me to the Moon ("Neon Genesis Evangelion")
10. Sunday in the Park With George ("Sunday in the Park With George" - Sondheim)

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

May 18, 2008 - Taipei, Taiwan. Songshan District. The lane where I live. It's a nice neighborhood, lots of stray cats, which is a lot nicer than the rampant stray dog problem in most other parts of Taipei.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Eastern Wave (Three Mile Pilot)
2. O My God (live) (The Police)
3. Lately (live) (Tegan & Sara)
4. Opening Theme (Camper Van Beethoven)
5. In the Cage (Genesis)
6. If You Cross (Three Mile Pilot)
7. Sodomy ("Hair")
8. The Days of Old (Paris)
9. Your Eyes (The Sundays)
10. Your Arse My Place (Elastica)

Sunday, November 09, 2008

May 16, 2008 - Intersection of Xinyi and Keelung roads, looking east at Taipei 101, the 2nd highest building in the world. Somehow that doesn't have the same impressiveness as saying "the tallest building in the world". Oh well.

It's been raining for more than 24 hours straight. It may have let up for short periods of less than an hour, but I think it's been pretty much constant since yesterday morning. I think it's from a typhoon to the southwest that isn't predicted to come near us, but the rain is dumping down on us.

So I couldn't do any riding yesterday, on my rare day off with no work and no rehearsal/gig, but I'm quitting my job next week, going in for weekends for maybe a month longer, so I'll have a lot more time soon. Although I'm supposed to be using the time to really try to nail down the language before I leave.

I was hoping to ride out to Taiwan's east coast. I'm doing more day riding now that the Summer heat is gone. It's still hotter than San Francisco ever gets, except during their laughable "heat waves", which to me is just comfortable, but it's all relative.

The other day, I found a road from Xizhi (汐止), just east of Taipei, that goes south to Pingxi (平溪), that I did during the daytime. Day riding still sucks because of the traffic and pollution, and Route 5 out of Taipei wasn't exactly pleasant, but once I got off that main road onto 北31 to Pingxi, it turned out to be a great ride. The climb went up to 655 meters (over 2000') before descending down to Pingxi.

And strangely, I was worried when I started out before noon that it would be uncomfortably hot, since the sun was shining and it was already probably in the low 80s. But as I got out of Taipei and headed up the mountain, it clouded over and the temperature came down, and it was a pleasant climb. I was even worried about rain.

But as soon as I started descending, the clouds disappeared and the rest of the ride was all in sunlight. As good as it gets.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Ai Suru Hito Yo (Sakura)
2. Samurai Showdown (RZA - "Ghost Dog")
3. Cracked Actor (live) (David Bowie)
4. Yume no Tamago (Ichiko Hashimoto - "RahXephon")
5. Chan Chan (Eliades Ochoa - "Buena Vista Social Club")
6. Wonder (Natalie Merchant)
7. Walking in Space ("Hair")
8. Giant Steps (John Coltrane)
9. I'll Be Back (The Beatles)
10. Got To Get You Into My Life (The Beatles - Anthology)

Friday, October 31, 2008

May 12, 2008 - An update pic along the riverside bikeway where the Keelung meets the Danshui River.

Continuing on the same part of the bikeway. They reminded me of when the Simpsons used the opening theme of The Sopranos. I call this section of bikeway the "5 mile extension" because there is a shortcut from the Danshui to the Keelung rivers, but taking this route adds 5 miles.

I tried quitting my job yesterday, but apparently something got lost in translation. That, or people in journalism hear what they want to hear, and don't hear what they don't want to hear. So I have to go in tomorrow with a more forceful declaration that I'm going to quit.

Working at that newspaper is an interesting study on brainwashing. It's a blue newspaper, and I consider myself center-leaning-green. Now I find myself reading green oriented news and it seems incredibly biased and practically fringe. They make Taiwan's president look like a cross between George W. Bush and Stalin. So now I'm hopelessly delusioned by Taiwan politics, and probably better off that way.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Bones of Her Hands (Archers of Loaf)
2. Vamos (The Pixies)
3. Poisoned Rose (The Costello Show featuring the Attractions)
4. East New York Stamp (Jeru & Afu Ra - "Ghost Dog")
5. Lugu Lugu Kan Ibi (David Darling & the Wulu Bunun)
6. Five Years (live) (David Bowie)
7. Mr. Blue Sky (Electric Light Orchestra)
8. Omedetou (Judy And Mary)
9. Dust in the Wind/Acoustic Guitar Solo (live) (Kansas)
10. Sea and Sand (The Who)

Friday, October 24, 2008

May 12, 2008 - Taipei, Taiwan. Keelung left bank-Danshui right bank bikeway.

This was shot in May before I discovered the benefits of night riding, which I've been doing most of the Summer. Now, in October, the days are cooling down enough that day rides are possible, i.e., more potential for ride lomos. I guess with the Fisheye 2, it's possible to take night lomos with long exposure, but I think night shots would mostly be a bunch of indistinct flecks of light.

This week I've ridden a total of 95 miles. 54 of those were on a day ride to Jinshan on Taiwan's northeast coast. Day rides being possible doesn't make them more enjoyable than night rides, though. True, I can enjoy scenery; true, I can shoot some lomos; but the choking on motorscooter exhaust fumes on major roads is something that is avoided by night riding. When I ride Route 2 from Danshui to Keelung, it's going to be a night ride.

I went exploring the bike paths along the Dahan River last night. They're not as seamless as Taipei, and they're not paved for smooth riding. They basically laid down concrete for multi-purpose recreational use and pat themselves on the back for supporting cycling, even though they're not really clear on the concept. But the further south I went, the more interesting they got, and they're worth more exploring. I went down as far as Yingge, which is as far as Taipei County goes, then returned on Route 3, getting home at a little after 5 in the morning.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Revenge (live) (Archers of Loaf)
2. She Loves You (The Beatles - Anthology)
3. Wandering Star (Portishead)
4. Holiday Gone Well (The Aislers Set)
5. Hamse Hai Sara Jahan ("Jo Jeeta Woh Sikandar" - Bollywood)
6. Oom-Pah-Pah ("Oliver!")
7. Does He Love You? (Rilo Kiley)
8. Flowers (New Radicals)
9. Vanity (Smashing Pumpkins)
10. Lost Ones (Lauryn Hill)

Thursday, October 16, 2008

May 12, 2008 - Taipei, Taiwan. Riverside bikeway along the Keelung River with, I think, Mt. Guanyin across the Danshui River ahead.

The left bank of the Keelung River ends here at the confluence with the Danshui River. They've developed it into a little park, which is nice.

You know, when I first started riding around Taipei after I arrived two and a half years ago, there was room for improvement in the riverside bikeway system. I can't be too critical about it, because such recreational facilities and urban beautification projects are a luxury in many urban settings. But there were problems with access, maintenance, and passage as construction was ongoing.

Two years on, now I want to know where else in the world is there a recreation bikeway system that tops Taipei's. I haven't gone around the world looking for them, I don't know what other cities have them aside from San Francisco and New York, but in my ignorance, I'm going to go out on a limb and say that Taipei has one of the world's best recreational bikeways.

Some ridiculously high percentage of Taipei's riversides are now dedicated to recreational use, thanks to the rivers not being commercially viable, of course. The bikeways are extensive, and I do want to measure them one day. Along both banks of all the rivers - some of which I haven't even been on yet, particularly along the Dahan River, I think the mileage may come close to 100 miles.

As development and construction is completed, they are becoming increasingly seamless. Just the other night, at 2 in the morning, I realized I could "time trial" 27 miles from where I live by the Keelung River to where I used to live by my old apartment in Xindian on the Jingmei River. I couldn't time trial it (I just mean prolonged riding at a relatively high pace; over 20 mph is a high cruising speed for me) during the day because there's too many people, but at night, it's more or less a straight shot, albeit with places requiring slowing down.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Don't Let Me Down (The Beatles)
2. Give Peace a Chance (John Lennon)
3. Tonight, Tonight, Tonight (live) (Genesis)
4. Underdogs of Nipomo (Archers of Loaf)
5. In My Body (Smashing Pumpkins)
6. There Goes a Tenner (Kate Bush)
7. Pressure (live) (The Kinks)
8. The Fly (U2)
9. Will You Love Me Tomorrow? (Carole King)
10. La La Love You (The Pixies)

Monday, October 13, 2008

September 7, 2008 - Bad tattoo self-portrait. Makes it clear how hard it is to aim the fisheye. Most of the time it's just random pointing at whereever.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. 40 (live) (U2)
2. Sora Yori Umi Yori (Puri Puri Samba '91) (Princess Princess)
3. Blackout (David Bowie)
4. Who the Cap Fit (Bob Marley & the Wailers)
5. Down Upbeat (Casiopea)
6. Love's Recovery (Indigo Girls)
7. War/No More Trouble (live) (Bob Marley & the Wailers)
8. Hashih ("Hair")
9. If You Had Lived (Sweet Honey in the Rock)
10. More Than This (10,000 Maniacs)

Friday, October 10, 2008

May 11, 2008 - La Mer, back porch, just before we started playing. Those are our "peeps" at the table in front. That's the guitarist on the left, bassist on the right, Andy crouching in front. I don't miss the trek going up to Sanzhi to play, even though it was nice getting out of Taipei and basking in the beach culture that surrounds Taiwan all along its coasts. Really chill vibe. I wouldn't mind living out on the coast somewhere in Taiwan.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Symphony No. 2 "Romantic", III. Allegro con brio (Howard Hanson)
2. Lie Detector (Sleeper)
3. Namida ga Kirari (Spitz)
4. Big Spender ("Sweet Charity" - 1986 revival)
5. Marching Bands of Manhattan (Death Cab for Cutie)
6. King of the Kerb (live) (Echobelly)
7. Fascination (David Bowie)
8. Spirits Having Flown (The Bee Gees)
9. Hard As Love (Marillion)
10. Mr. Zebra (live) (Tori Amos)

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

July 5, 2008 - This should round up that night, which was in fact just beginning. I won't say anything else about this lomo or that night lest the wrong information is found out about the wrong people who misinterpret or are unable to interpret things in the proper light, regarding any number of possible topics.

Which is, I suppose, an odd thing to be concerned about considering the intentional misleading nature of the previous posts.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Union Square (Tom Waits)
2. Flute Concerto in G Major (Vivaldi)
3. I Me Mine (The Beatles - Anthology)
4. I Would Hurt A Fly (live) (Built to Spill)
5. Walking Through the Darkness (Tekitha - "Ghost Dog")
6. Not for the Life of Me (reprise) ("Thoroughly Modern Millie")
7. Reviewing the Situation ("Oliver!")
8. Future Legend/Diamond Dogs (David Bowie)
9. New York State of Mind (Billy Joel)
10. Baby I Love Your Way (Big Mountain)

Sunday, October 05, 2008

July 5, 2008 - OK, so Alex was friendly with everyone that night. Here, she has a thing with Nina. My god, Nina has a better chance than I do! (this is all a joke, mind you, just seeing if Andy comes here, but I think he doesn't. he didn't punch my lights out at our gig last night).

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Kimi to Iru Jikan no Naka de (Ayaka Hirahara)
2. Raise the Roof (Public Enemy)
3. Soul Daiji (Bubble Gum Brothers)
4. Maggie's Farm (Bob Dylan)
5. It's a Hard-Knock Life ("Annie")
6. Faithful (Pearl Jam)
7. Toast (Archers of Loaf)
8. Natural Animal (Echobelly)
9. Fifty Ways to Leave Your Lover (live) (Simon & Garfunkel)
10. You Took the Words Right Out of My Mouth (Hot Summer Night) (Meat Loaf)

Friday, October 03, 2008

July 5, 2008 - I'm gonna steal his girlfriend! Let's see if Andy, the band's singer, is really coming to this blog. See? His girlfriend's all over me at this birthday celebration of hers' near the peak of my insomnia days. Note the look on my face, though: "Git yer hands offa me, woman, ya tryn'a get me lynched?"

Besides (that's Andy standing), look at all the fly ladies he's always surrounded with! Well, maybe not the ugly guy in the middle, but look how adoringly the woman on the right is gazing at him.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Long As I'm Here With You ("Thoroughly Modern Millie")
2. Tres (Pinback)
3. Sunday (Helium)
4. Passing Strangers (Marillion)
5. My Life (Billy Joel)
6. By the Way (Red Hot Chili Peppers)
7. Ghost World (acoustic) (Aimee Mann)
8. Papillon (Rilo Kiley)
9. Army Dreamers (Kate Bush)
10. Magic Bus (live) (The Who)

Sunday, September 28, 2008

May 11, 2008 - Sanzhi, Taiwan north coast. With time before playing, we could walk out on the beach and relax. That's Alex and Nikki walking back along the jetty. Or is it a quay? Or a breakwater? Who knows. Alex is the band's singer's girlfriend. He recently found this blog, so now he knows that I'm out to steal his girlfriend. They're also moving next month to a place with extra rooms, so they asked me if I wanted to move in with them. Naturally, that'll make it much easier for me to put my moves on, little does he know.

As they walked back, I continued walking out. It's farther than it looks.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Walk Through the Fire (Peter Gabriel)
2. I'm Looking Through You (The Beatles)
3. Below the Salt (Unwound)
4. Wandering in the Street (Blackhand Nakasi Workers Band)
5. Babe (Styx)
6. Two Is Enough (Seam)
7. Yassassin (David Bowie)
8. The Goldberg Variations, #26 (J.S. Bach)
9. Toki ga Bousou Suru (Shiina Ringo)
10. When I'm Sixty-Four (The Beatles)

Thursday, September 25, 2008

May 11, 2008 - Sanzhi, on the north coast of Taiwan. The band used to play up there couple times a month at a restaurant/cafe called La Mer. We played on the back porch, just steps away from the beach. Not bad, eh? It was just far from Taipei and a pain to get to. We stopped playing up there after we got our own place to play in Taipei. And since the person who booked us was . . . well, murdered.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. OSCA (Tokyo Jihen)
2. Ein Deutsches Requiem, V. Ihr habt nun Traurigkeit (Brahms)
3. Rude Mood (live) (Stevie Ray Vaughan & Double Trouble)
4. Deep Wilson (Kristin Hersh)
5. Israel (Siouxsie & the Banshees)
6. We Know Better (Echobelly)
7. Egypt (Kate Bush)
8. Kougousei (Shiina Ringo)
9. The Way Things Go (The Octopus Project)
10. Go Fun Burn Man (live) (Mission of Burma)

Saturday, September 20, 2008

May 9, 2008 - Bend in the Keelung River, Songshan District, Taipei, Taiwan. This is about half a mile from where I live. It's a pretty nice riverside area. We just had a typhoon blow through, and they closed all the floodgates, but the river is quite large and although the river level noticeably rose, there was no sign of damage, like on the Xindian or Jingmei rivers in last year's big typhoon.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Falling Down (Tom Waits)
2. Neon Lights (Sahara Hotnights)
3. Perfect Time (Archers of Loaf)
4. Fool In the Rain (Led Zeppelin)
5. Melody (Sakura)
6. Coming Up (Paul McCartney)
7. Without Fire (764-HERO)
8. Far East Medley (live) (Bela Fleck & the Flecktones)
9. Growing Up (Peter Gabriel)
10. Gut Pageant (Kristin Hersh)

Monday, September 15, 2008

May 9, 2008 - Nanjing East Road, Section 5; one of the major east-west boulevards going across Taipei. They're building an MRT line under it, which is that construction going on in the middle of the road. I'm not making any predictions, but I can't imagine still living here by the time they complete it. Which is like. . . 5 years from now.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Grasshoppers (Ryuichi Sakamoto)
2. Pull Up the Roots (Talking Heads)
3. Who Do You Dance For? (Sahara Hotnights)
4. Try to Remember (reprise) ("The Fantasticks")
5. December (Unwound)
6. A Sword and a Rose and a Cape ("Carnival")
7. Home (Kristin Hersh)
8. Black Country Woman (Led Zeppelin)
9. Five O'Clock Whistle (Duke Ellington)
10. Whatever (Ani DiFranco)

Saturday, September 13, 2008

April 18, 2008 - Bike parking next to the Taida library. Bike parking is never an issue on campus, unless you try to park close to where you want to go. That's a general rule. Then you're either jamming someone else's bike in, or they're jamming in yours, and good luck trying to get your bike out. I think I avoided going to the library when I knew it would be crowded, so I never had a problem. Also because the library doesn't have enough seating, and it's hard to find a seat during peak hours. This is Taiwan's best university, mind you.

I had started working in April, but I still had a valid Taida ID until the end of June (the person stamping my ID a semester earlier made a mistake), so I still went down there on occasion.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. I'm Only Sleeping (take 1) (The Beatles - Anthology)
2. Yeah! Nen Matsu (Bakufu Slump)
3. Mystic Rhythms (live) (Rush)
4. Don't You Worry 'Bout a Thing (Stevie Wonder)
5. Itoshi no Happy Days (Dreams Come True)
6. Do You Think It's Alright? (The Who)
7. Black and White ("Barnum")
8. Knuckle Down (XTC)
9. Goodbye Caroline (Aimee Mann)
10. Art of Fugue, Contrapunctus 10 (J.S. Bach)

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

April 12, 2008 - Taipei, Taiwan. Songshan District. Above ground trains run out of eastern Taipei from Songshan train station, serving eastern Taiwan. West of Taipei, they emerge from underground in Taipei County.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Brandenburg Concerto No. 2, I. Allegro (J.S. Bach)
2. What Am I Here For? (Duke Ellington)
3. People (King Crimson)
4. Syeeda's Flute Song (John Coltrane)
5. Argument (Fugazi)
6. Whatall Is Nice (Ani DiFranco)
7. Hi Fu Mi Hachi Kaeshi (Katsuya Yokoyama - shakuhachi)
8. Sledgehammer (Peter Gabriel)
9. One (Sakura)
10. The Bed ("Hair")

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

April 12, 2008 - Wow, this is the next consecutive frame from the previous post. A whole month between shots. That's so sad. And I didn't even start work until the beginning of April. What was I even doing then? I'm still working on the second roll of this year. That's even sadder. I didn't even stop sleeping until the end of May.

East side of the Raohe Night Market street in Songshan District, where there's an apparently popular Taoist temple.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Drain You (Nevermind)
2. La Guerre Est Finie (Pizzicato Five)
3. The Goldberg Variations, #17 (J.S. Bach)
4. Democratic Circus (Talking Heads)
5. Being for the Benefit of Mr. Kite! (Take 7) (The Beatles - Anthology)
6. Panama (Van Halen)
7. Morning Sprite (Chick Corea Akoustic Band)
8. Caught A Lite Sneeze (Tori Amos)
9. Harbor Wind (Keiko Matsui)
10. Woman (John Lennon)

Saturday, August 30, 2008

March 12, 2008 - Taipei, Taiwan. Aiguo West Road near Xiaonanmen. "Nanmen" meaning "south gate", this was probably originally part of the south wall fortification surrounding the original Taipei City, which was no more than the current western part of Zhongzheng District and a little north of Taipei Main Station. It's hard to imagine Taipei a hundred years ago.

This shot didn't work. I was trying to get that busted up motor scooter that get left by the gate. The gate is on an island in the middle of the road, with a roundabout going around it.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. You're My Best Friend (Queen)
2. Anata Dake o - Summer Heartbreak - (Southern All-Stars)
3. Paquita (Tabu Ley & Africando)
4. Mothership Connection (Star Child) (Parliament Funkadelic)
5. Long Painting (50 Foot Wave)
6. Stop Your Sobbing (The Pretenders)
7. Five O'Clock Drag (Duke Ellington)
8. Stone the Crows ("Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat")
9. Pencil Rain (They Might Be Giants)
10. Ugly (Smashing Pumpkins)

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

March 9, 2008 - Taipei, Taiwan. Nanjing East Road near the Guangfu North Road intersection. This is my new neighborhood after I moved in the beginning of March. I had been in this area before, albeit rarely, on rides. Needless to say, I never thought I would one day live here.

I had also been here once before to a music venue called "The Living Room", which is across the street directly to the left off this shot. I heard that it was closing soon after I moved here, which peeved me (just my luck), but I think the place has been picked up by new management and will continue having live music.

They're building an MRT (subway) line under Nanjing East Road, and this is a fenced off construciton area. The fencing and traffic lanes are constantly changing to accomodate construction. It makes for hairy riding, so I avoid riding my bike on this road. The line is scheduled for completion in, like, 2013, by which time I certainly hope to be back in the U.S.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Shoot Him (The Sugarcubes)
2. Home Sweet Home (Peter Gabriel)
3. New Jersey (100 Watt Smile)
4. Bitter Memories (Bakufu Slump)
5. Schizophrenia's Weighted Me Down (Cat Power)
6. Beneath, Between and Behind (live) (Rush)
7. The Roof is Leaking (Phil Collins)
8. Every Ghetto Every City (Lauryn Hill)
9. Shulaba La Bamba (Southern All-Stars)
10. No One Has Ever Loved Me ("Passion" - Sondheim)

Saturday, August 23, 2008

February 10, 2008 - This is so long ago, it's distant in my memory. It was a Lunar New Year family outing, but it was distant family to me, so it's all appropriate - my cousin's wife's family, and I got invited along because I happened to run into my cousin's wife on the street the day before.

That mound is a stone oven we built. This is a family activity that's more for kids, so it was dirty and interesting. It developed from a real kids' activity in Taiwan a long time ago. Some in the older generation remember making these ovens in the neighborhood and barbecuing food. Now it's organized in these special parks that provide the oven base, there are rocks that need to be collected to build the oven, and the park provides the food, too, as part of the fee.

I forget exactly where the park was, about a 25 minute drive out of Kaohsiung, towards Tainan, I think. These are my cousin's wife's family members, they were very nice and I had fun there.

Later in the day after the fires died down and the food got eaten - not very good cooked that way, but the point of the activity was to have fun with the kids, not to feast on good food necessarily, so it was still successful. And with kids, playing in the dirt becomes primo.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Here We Go! (J-Walk)
2. Loved Despite Great Faults (Blonde Redhead)
3. Give a Little Love (Rilo Kiley)
4. Clones (We're All) (Smashing Pumpkins)
5. Uptight (Everything's Alright) (Stevie Wonder)
6. Message to Prez (The Maupin/Williams Project)
7. Offline PK (live-ish) (Pinback)
8. One Flower (Guo Brothers & Shung Tian)
9. Colored Spade ("Hair")
10. Not A Day Goes By ("Merrily We Roll Along" - Sondheim)

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Visit down south

February 6, 2008 - Kaohsiung, Taiwan. Grandparents' gravesite. I know I've shot this many times already, but just documenting going there again. I asked my cousin what it said, and he wasn't really sure. Apparently what gets written on gravesites is a complicated matter.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Sickfile (Archers of Loaf)
2. Chikai (Ayaka Hirahara)
3. The Other Way of Stopping (The Police)
4. It's a Hit (Rilo Kiley)
5. Pink India (Stephen Malkmus)
6. Into the Heart (U2)
7. Rumpofsteelskin (Parliament Funkadelic)
8. I Can't Escape From You (The The)
9. I Gotta Move (The Kinks)
10. 查某人 (林強)

Saturday, August 09, 2008

February 4, 2008 - Starbucks, across Roosevelt Road from the Taida campus in Gongguan. Long exposure as the light was fading. So long ago. Back then I had already decided to move from Xindian City to Songshan District. I probably had decided at that point that I wasn't going to enroll for another semester of language classes, and would dedicate myself to self-study, which is what I was probably doing at Starbucks.

Back then, I could still drink coffee. Insomnia has killed my coffee drinking. Back then rehearsals had probably just started with the band. We didn't know half a year later we'd have a weekly gig at the bass player's new live bar/restaurant. Back then I had no idea I'd be working. I wonder what I'd do different back then if I knew where I'd be now. Not sleeping, that is. So much for the Zen adage: "When hungry, eat; when tired, sleep". But what if you have insomnia? Shut up, kid.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Natsu no Utage (Chitose Hajime)
2. Untouchable Face (Ani DiFranco)
3. It Ain't Easy (David Bowie)
4. In Every Corner (Julie Plug)
5. On Mercury (Red Hot Chili Peppers)
6. Jhumra (Himalayan instrumental music)
7. Sweet Thing (live) (David Bowie)
8. (You Made Me) (The Thief of Your Heart) (Sinead O'Connor)
9. That's All (live) (Genesis)
10. Mexican Seafood (Nirvana)

Saturday, August 02, 2008

January 17, 2008 - Xindian, Taiwan. So long ago, opening frame on this roll, which is why it's cut off. Although I'm not sure why it's cut off on the right. Shouldn't the opening frame be cut off on the left? Maybe my film is messing with my mind.

That's where I used to live. I think at that time, I had just told my landlord I would probably stay there indefinitely, but then my current apartment came to my attention through family members, and a month and a half later I moved. My current landlord is my cousin's uncle. Which could mean my father, which would suck since he'd be charging me rent (bastard), but no, it's an uncle on her mother's side. I don't have enough good things to say about her mother's side of the family, all of them wonderful people. My cousin perhaps being the least among them, having blood mingled with my side of the family, haha!

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Hateful (The Clash)
2. Hate My Way (Throwing Muses)
3. Symphony No. 41, I. Allegro vivace (Mozart)
4. The Nuttycracker Suite ("Thoroughly Modern Millie")
5. Power to the People (John Lennon)
6. Little Amsterdam (Tori Amos)
7. Song of Complaint (Askarian & Khatchaturian - "Passion" sources)
8. Oliver! ("Oliver!")
9. Admiral Perry (David Byrne - Music for "The Knee Plays")
10. Worse Than Detroit (Robert Plant)

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Boring nothing shot

June 25, 2008 - Taipei, Taiwan, Minzu E. Road and Xinsheng N. Road, Sec. 3, with the Xinsheng Expressway overhead, and I wouldn't be surprised if this was the Xinsheng canal. Canals aren't anything in Taipei, unlike Bangkok where they are extensive and used for transportation. Here they're dank and smelly, basically uncovered sewage lines leading to the rivers.

So now I'm on a new roll, a roll that took almost half a year to shoot. Uninspired, unmotivated, insomnial, and working. To emphasize it all, this kind of shot is what I fear is the best I can do. Boring shot of basically nothing. It's not without merit, but lord it ain't a good shot. Fortunately, it's among the worst on the roll. Meaning others are better. Maybe. I hope.

iTunes soundtrack:
1. War Pigs (Black Sabbath)
2. Gone (U2)
3. Hear My Heart (Edith Frost)
4. Adam and Eve (live) (Ani DiFranco)
5. The Lamia (live) (Genesis)
6. I Will Catch U (Nokko)
7. Symphony No. 41, III. Menuetto (Allegretto) (Mozart)
8. The Angels Hung Around (Rilo Kiley)
9. Oh! Darling (The Beatles)
10. Here Come the Bastards (Primus)

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

just some random shots

January 2, 2008 - Hackensack, NJ. Red-nosed VW in the parking lot of Target. I'm sure I could have found a better composition for this subject. You can barely see the antlers. Man, do people go nuts for Christmas.

January 4, 2008 - 175th Street station of the New York Subway system. This far north, I think only the "A" train comes to this station. It's where I go to/get off because it's where the George Washington Bridge is. I take a bus to cross the bridge, or sometimes walk. Why am I talking in the present tense?

iTunes soundtrack:
1. Trimmed and Burning (Built to Spill)
2. Vigil (Fish)
3. Pale (Kristin Hersh)
4. Creatures of Love (Talking Heads)
5. Eleanor Rigby (The Beatles)
6. Imamura Jane (Southern All-Stars)
7. Welcome to the Jungle (Guns 'N Roses)
8. Cracked Actor (David Bowie)
9. Dead End Job (The Police)
10. Trees (live) (Rush)