Just Another Manic Monday of Miscellany

The coolest doorway in Paris is at number 29 Avenue Rapp .

Mondrian’s mysticism: Evolution (1910–1911)


Ada Limón

The truth is, I’ve never cared for the National
Anthem. If you think about it, it’s not a good
song. Too high for most of us with “the rockets
red glare” and then there are the bombs.
(Always, always, there is war and bombs.)
Once, I sang it at homecoming and threw
even the tenacious high school band off key.
But the song didn’t mean anything, just a call
to the field, something to get through before
the pummeling of youth. And what of the stanzas
we never sing, the third that mentions “no refuge
could save the hireling and the slave”? Perhaps,
the truth is, every song of this country
has an unsung third stanza, something brutal
snaking underneath us as we blindly sing
the high notes with a beer sloshing in the stands
hoping our team wins. Don’t get me wrong, I do
like the flag, how it undulates in the wind
like water, elemental, and best when it’s humbled,
brought to its knees, clung to by someone who
has lost everything, when it’s not a weapon,
when it flickers, when it folds up so perfectly
you can keep it until it’s needed, until you can
love it again, until the song in your mouth feels
like sustenance, a song where the notes are sung
by even the ageless woods, the short-grass plains,
the Red River Gorge, the fistful of land left
unpoisoned, that song that’s our birthright,
that’s sung in silence when it’s too hard to go on,
that sounds like someone’s rough fingers weaving
into another’s, that sounds like a match being lit
in an endless cave, the song that says my bones
are your bones, and your bones are my bones,
and isn’t that enough?

Inspired by the  Japanese word tsundoku (積読), which refers to the books we buy that accumulate without being read, “neon signs of tsundoku city” are a series of seven miniature capsule toys that replicate the ubiquitous shop signs of Tokyo. They include a coffee shop, hotel, bar, hospital, and a multi-tenant sign that reads “tsundoku bldg,” each with their own battery so as to illuminate a dark room.

They were designed by Ekoda Works, known for their sometimes-ridiculous but always humorous product design, and distributed by Bushiroad Media, who operates capsule toy vending machines across Japan.

Don’t Hesitate

If you suddenly and unexpectedly feel joy,
don’t hesitate. Give in to it. There are plenty
of lives and whole towns destroyed or about
to be. We are not wise, and not very often
kind. And much can never be redeemed.
Still, life has some possibility left. Perhaps this
is its way of fighting back, that sometimes
something happens better than all the riches
or power in the world. It could be anything,
but very likely you notice it in the instant
when love begins. Anyway, that’s often the case.
Anyway, whatever it is, don’t be afraid
of its plenty. Joy is not made to be a crumb.
– Mary Oliver

Photographer Kien Lam quit his job and over the next 343 days he visited 17 countries, taking 6237 photographs from which he created the wonderful timelapse below. NB: If the video does not launch in your email, please click on the link for TBTP homepage.



This entry was posted in Art, Asia, Books, Photography and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Just Another Manic Monday of Miscellany

  1. knitina says:

    Yaaas, and all the pharmaceutical companies flogging every kind of medicine for the most rare conditions, never refer to said ailment except by first initials: erectile dysfunction disorder: EDD, female whosits syndrome: FWS, usw. More than two syllables, too much effort. So overworked they are. >

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