Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Peking Punk

Holiday time and a strange mix of being far too busy and at a loose end depending on the number of people around at any given time.

Unfortunately no photos from a very enjoyable Monday, wondering around the hutongs, eating in lots of strange food outlets (from heart and stomach to a tasty Chinese cheese curd). We've been granted a week of good weather, presumably by those on high, which made for a balmy evening spent at Houhai lake with the garish lights somehow toned down by the increasing warmth. Dinner in a Yunan restaurant included my first taste of smelly fish grass which is a little like very small bamboo shoots and has an extremely strange but not unpleasant flavour. Getting used to this is a little like getting used to coriander leaves which at first can taste somewhat overpowering. A tasty dish and nice to have a new flavour added to the palette.

Back in the UK I was becoming increasingly frustrated going to restaurants, being served such similar things every time. I feel like I need my tastebuds activated by some unexptected combination of flavours which roasted field mushrooms in a herb crust or deep fried Camembert could never manage. It's great to be constantly bombarded with genuinely new taste experiences here which make eating so much more pleasurable. This isn't to say that I'm not satisfied by a fine juicy steak, the likes of which I haven't seen for many months now.

Monday evening I also rewatched Happy Together which was transformed on a second viewing. First time round I hadn't noticed the use of so many cliched styles which are stolen to impressive effect. It's actually a quite stunning film on second watch with so many techniques taken from French New Wave amongst other styles.

Tuesday was a bit of a write off, though I did spend many hours reading. I stumbled across this blog which has enthralled and shocked me in equal measure. A British guy named Shaun was arrested in Arizona on charges of being the mastermind of a huge drug ring and put in Joe Arpaio's legendary jail before his trial. He stayed there for two years in conditions of quite unimaginable horror. With temperatures above 100 F, air conditioning was turned off. Cockroaches infested every cell, people were fed potato peelings and murder and suicide were common... and this was a jail to house people who hadn't been convicted of anything. He started writing the blog by sending his parents letters written with the stubs of pencils, which they posted on his site. I shan't comment in great detail about my views about his case because I only know his side of the story plus that from a newspaper article which he claims is fabricated. Having spent many hours reading his blog my reaction is strongly to side with him.

(I should add, his blog contains a lot of graphic descriptions of all manner of unpleasentness)

I've still got a few months worth of his posts to read but having been convicted he's currently in a prison in Arizona in far better conditions but still with many stories to tell. It's fascinating to see how he changes over the months (mostly spent devouring a huge number of books on all subjects) and his writing about prison and criminal justice as well as his views on possible solutions to prison overcrowding and the huge tax burden which is placed on the public are very interesting. I would advise starting from the beginning of the blog if you're going to read it as the story grows and is based on past events. It's also the first two years which are the most shocking in terms of suffering placed on those who should be presumed innocent.

Finally, today I went to the Midi Festival in Haidian park. Another very warm day has left me a little frazzled from sitting in the sun too long. This is a four day music festival with four or five stages, a very relaxed atmosphere and a wonderfully diverse crowd. I took lots of snaps of the various people who come out of the woodwork at these events. I leave these without subtitle for now.

Anyway, a lot of fun though I had to leave early to have a Chinese lesson. The party's on again tomorrow so we may return for the evening's session which is a bit more dancy. Should be fun...


Anonymous said...

hi ya jon, that midi festival looked good...reckon i would of liked that....any good bands?

Unknown said...

Hi Kim,

Good to hear from you.

Unfortunately just as a really energetic metal band came on, complete with moshing long haired Chinese groupies, I had to head home for a lesson. Before that the bands were mediocre though relaxing sunny afternoon fare. One of my favourite Beijing bands, AK47, were on the previous night but I missed them. It sounded like the DJs in the evening were a lot of fun too.

Next year I shall have to schedule my lessons more sensibly.

Chat soon,


nduriri said...

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nduriri said...

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See light dynamics.PDF

nduriri said...

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nduriri said...

Thanks for your comments. In a two-body problem system, the angular momentum is not constant as stated by the Newton law. The rate of change of momentum (torque) is alternating but due to gravitational waves radiation energy loss, the torque is not symetrical with respect to the perihelion and aphelion line of axis. This explains the mercury perihelion advance. For more details see topic gravitational waves radiation.PDF in

nduriri said...

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Since the quasi stationary orthodox gravity shield theories do not offer a global and coherent explanation concerning gravity perturbations, can there be a physical science work of more importance than obtaining an understanding of these perturbations and seeking interaction with the remote forces of gravity?
The facts are there, the facts remain the keystone in which the stability of a theory must be tested.
Joseph Nduriri, Paris, FRANCE