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Showing posts from August, 2021

Mirror (1975)

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  Haunting and challenging, Andrei Tarkovsky's Mirror isn't an easy film. It's intriguing, beautiful and poetic as it depicts the dreams and memories of a dying poet. We rarely see the narrator of the film. We see his memories of life before and during WWII as well as conversations in the 1960s and 1970s.  Rather than a linear plot, the film consists of dreams, images (plenty of mirrors are shown). The most compelling scenes for me focussed on his ex-wife and their conversations about custody of their teenage son. The film drew me in and mystified me. I felt that I need to do some research to make more sense of Mirror  so that I can better understand it. I understand that a lot of movie lovers don't have the time or patience to invest in decoding a movie so it's not for everyone, but if you're curious and willing to be perplexed as well as mystified, watch Mirror . Your library probably has it or can get it.  Below is a 17 minute video explaining Mirror . 

Monday Mural Challenge

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  Pilsen, Chicago Hosted on Colourful World, Monday Murals challenges bloggers to share photos of murals. Mine's from an artist's home in Pilsen. You might not be able to see it, but the man is bounded by barbed wire and he represents an immigrant. I'm not sure of all the symbolism, but the man is inspired by Gulliver's Travels.  To see more murals from around the world, click here . 

Pull Up a Seat

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  For this weekly challenge Xingfu Mama will make a post every Friday morning. To play along: Create a post with a photo of places one sits or might sit, or art about sitting, and maybe a little background or story about the spot or a picture of the view. Add a tag “Pull up a seat”. Add a link to your post in the Pull up a Seat comment section, either by writing a comment with your URL or by creating a pingback. Old World Wisconsin 

Silent Sunday

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Flowers of Shanghai

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Set in the Qing dynasty,  The Flowers of Shanghai  offers a look at life amongst courtesans who cater to elite men who gather in brothels to eat, drink, gamble and . . . we never see what else. The camera stays in the main rooms. So use your imagination. The film’s strength was its costumes and set. The languid ladies squabbles about getting money from their biggest customers left me cold. I understand that  was the tradition within this subculture but it wasn’t clear that the patron was obligated to give his flower as much as she wanted. As girls these women were sold to the flower houses, yet they can marry their way out of this life. These characters didn’t win me over.   The arguments were repeated throughout the film. If there were some change in direction, a revelation or action, my interest would have grown. Sumptuous silk costumes can only do so much to help a movie.

Sepia Saturday

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  This week Sepia Saturday has challenged bloggers to post based on the image of a post-earthquake tsunami.  What I found in the Library of Congress are photos of destruction after an earthquake. They had nothing but a few recent undownloadable photos of the effects of a tsunami.  American Colony . Photo Department, photographer.  Earthquake Damage . , 1927. [July] Photograph. https://www.loc.gov/item/2019700839/. Genthe, Arnold, photographer.  San Francisco earthquake . San Francisco California, 1906. [, Printed Later] Photograph. https://www.loc.gov/item/2015650751/. The principal square of Arequipa, after the earthquake . Arequipa Peru, 1868. Photograph. https://www.loc.gov/item/2006676649/. To see more Sepia Saturday photos, click here to get to the hub.

Sculpture Saturday

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  Saturday Sculpture encourages bloggers to share photos of any and all kinds of sculptures. To join, you need to: 1. Share a photo of a sculpture on your blog. 2. Link here to No Fixed Plans, the new hub for the challenge. It's a fun challenge. Give it a try. Here's some posts from this week: Salsa World Traveler

Weekend Coffee Share

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  What a week. Here we go ~ Weekend Coffee Share is a time for us to take a break out of our lives and enjoy some timely catching up with friends (old and new)! If we were having coffee, I'd tell you I'm shindoi , which is Kansai dialect (i.e. Japanese dialect) for tired, body and soul.  Trouble worsens in Afghanistan. It looks like few if any of the girls and women in the AIWR program will get out any time soon. It did occur to me on my morning walk that perhaps the university where I taught in Indonesia might grant some of them international student visas. I've emailed my contacts. I pray this works out. I'm hopeful because Indonesia is affordable for other developing countries. I bet Nahid and Homira's sisters and mother would be happy to go to study Indonesian and then whatever subject afterwards.  Life goes on and we must juggle our tasks. That's how we help rather than wallow. So I've kept up my walking, mainly around the neighborhood and at a mall wh

Cee's Black and White Challenge

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 Fences & Gates Each week Cee challenges bloggers to share black and white photos based on a theme. This week we're challenged to share photos of fences and gates. Mine are from the Pomeranian house at Old World Wisconsin.   What will you share? To see more wonderful pictures, click here .

Thursday Door Challenge: On the Prairie

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  Pomeranian house, Old World Wisconsin Thursday Doors is a weekly blogging challenge allowing door lovers to come together to admire and share their favorite door photos from around the world. Feel free to join in on the fun by creating your own Thursday Doors post each week and then sharing it, between Thursday morning and Saturday noon (North American Eastern Time). To get to the hub where you'll find links to dozens of doors, click here .

Cee's Midweek Madness Challenge

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 Must have 2 M's Graceland Cemetery, Mausoleum Row Cee’s inspiring bloggers to post based on a prompt then share the post by linking to her blog or creating a pingback. This week she’s inspiring us to share a photo of a subject that has 2 m’s in its name. I'm  sharing  photos of various memorials . Memorial to a fireman WWI Memorial

Poem of the Week

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  To a Poet a Thousand Years Hence I who am dead a thousand years, And wrote this sweet archaic song, Send you my words for messengers The way I shall not pass along. I care not if you bridge the seas, Or ride secure the cruel sky, Or build consummate palaces Of metal or of masonry. But have you wine and music still, And statues and a bright-eyed love, And foolish thoughts of good and ill, And prayers to them who sit above? How shall we conquer? Like a wind That falls at eve our fancies blow, And old M├Žonides the blind Said it three thousand years ago. O friend unseen, unborn, unknown, Student of our sweet English tongue, Read out my words at night, alone: I was a poet, I was young. Since I can never see your face, And never shake you by the hand, I send my soul through time and space To greet you. You will understand.

Monday Mural

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  Abstract mural in Uptown, Chicago Each week bloggers are invited to post a Monday Mural photo of any mural you've seen anywhere.   This one's from Uptown's Art Week, which concluded earlier this month. I'm not sure what I think of this work by Dave Watkins. Click here to see more murals from around the world. 

Pick of the Litter

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  Who doesn’t like dogs, puppies? Yeah, there are a few. Some have bad experiences, but that’s rare. Dogs can do so much for us. It’s hard not to love them. The documentary Pick of the Litter shows how wonderful dogs can be, how lucky we are to have them. Pick of the Litter f ollows the puppies of the P litter: Patriot, Phil, Primrose, Poppet, Potomac as they go through the training and testing to become a guide dog. Few puppies ever make the cut.  We meet these pups as their born and see how the staff at Guide Dogs for the Blind names each one. Then after 8 weeks the puppies are place with families that will begin training them so that they’re comfortable out on the street, in stores, at the airport, that they aren’t easily distracted and that they can heel. Some families are veteran trainers; others are first timers. Some will fail and the dog will be moved to another home. The guide dog center frequently observes these dogs and when a dog shows the wrong characteristics will “career

Silent Sunday

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Sepia Saturday

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  Each week Sepia Saturday challenges bloggers with a visual prompt. This week we're going to the movies. I went through the Library of Congress' archives and found an array of photos of theaters and illustrations of people watching movies. Mayer, Henry, Artist.  In the movies / Hy Mayer ; by Hy Mayer . , 1914. New York: Published by Puck Publishing Corporation, 295-309 Lafayette Street. Photograph. https://www.loc.gov/item/2011649843/. Edison's greatest marvel--The Vitascope . , ca. 1896. New York: Metropolitan Print Company. Photograph. https://www.loc.gov/item/2003689462/ Lee, Russell, photographer.  Movie theater. Southside, Chicago, Illinois , 1941. Apr. Photograph. https://www.loc.gov/item/2017788750/. Trikosko, Marion S, photographer.  Man working with a projector in a movie theater / MST . , 1958. Feb. 9. Photograph. https://www.loc.gov/item/2003654377/. Vachon, John, photographer.  Movie theater. Romney, West Virginia . United States Hampshire County Romney West Vi

Which Way Challenge

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Old World Wisconsin, Eagle, WI Hosted by Alive and Trekking, the weekly Which Way Challenge inspires bloggers to share photos of ways including:   Roads:  gravel, asphalt, cobbled, dirt, freeway, expressway, highway, bridges Indoor walkways:  hallways, aisles, people movers Outdoor walks:  sidewalks, paths, trails Stairs, elevators, escalators, or steps Railway tracks, monorails, ski lifts Runways and tarmacs Ferries, canals and locks Parking lots, private driveways Tunnels Signs of any kind:  directional, informational, store signs, wind vanes Maps that are posted as signs You can see more wonderful ways by clicking here . 

Word of the Week

Cotard's Syndrome (n.) -  People with Cotard's syndrome (also called walking corpse syndrome or Cotard's  delusion ) believe that parts of their body are missing, or that they are dying, dead, or don’t exist. They may think nothing exists. I learned this week that a friend's mother has Cotard's Syndrome. She believes she's dead, though she's perfectly alive. It's a rare condition with only about 200 people around the world having it. Still it's troubling. My friend will get calls from his mother and she'll chastise him for not calling him since she'd died. She's gotten upset with lots of people in her circle for neglecting her since she died. Most people are cured with treatment so I hope my friend's mother falls into that category. Reference "Cotard's Syndrome." (2020.) WebMD.com. Retrieved from  https://www.webmd.com/schizophrenia/cotards-syndrome on August 21, 2021.

Sculpture Saturday

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  Begging for alms, Kyoto, Japan Saturday Sculpture encourages bloggers to share photos of any and all kinds of sculptures. To join, you need to: 1. Share a photo of a sculpture on your blog. 2. Link here to No Fixed Plans, the new hub for the challenge. It's a fun challenge. Give it a try. You are invited to the Inlinkz link party! Click here to enter

PPAC

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  Uptown, Chicago Hosted by Cee and Marsha, Photographing Public Art Challenge encourages blotters to share photos of art they see around town. I'm sharing a mural of a profile that I saw in Chicago's Uptown neighborhood. To see more public art, click here and you'll get to the hub. 

Weekend Coffee Share

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  Weekend Coffee Share is a time for us to take a break out of our lives and enjoy some timely catching up with friends (old and new)! If we were having coffee, I'd say though I had a terrific week, all I can think about is the situation in Afghanistan . I've written before that I have tutored girls and young women in Afghanistan over Skype for a Canadian NGO for 10 years.  Now these young women are fearing for their lives or for their families. Currently I tutor Nahid on Sunday nights and Homira on Tuesday evenings. Nahid's a dentist in Kabul. As expected, I didn't hear from her this Sunday.  Tuesday I got an email from The Alliance for International Women's Rights (AIWR) for whom I volunteer. They said they knew of a private evacuation effort by a security outfit called Raven Advisory, LLC.  The urged mentors to get their mentees to send their personal data to AIWR for a chance, albeit a slim one, to get on an evacuation flight. I notified Nahid and she got her i

The Truth about Afghanistan

Cee's Black & White Challenge: Bridge

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  Chicago Each week Cee challenges bloggers to share black and white photos based on a theme. This week we're challenged to share photos of bridges. What will you share? To see more wonderful pictures, click here .

Thursday Doors: Old World Wisconsin

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  Norwegian farm door My contribution to the Thursday Door Challenge comes from Old World Wisconsin, which I just discovered last weekend. It's a wonderful historical site where they've gathered 19th century buildings from across the state. I love learning about history by seeing places like this.  To see more doors, click here .  To the summer kitchen - Norwegian farm