October, 2008 Archives

The struggle within

October 22nd, 2008 Permalink

I have a bit over four months left on my visa for China. I have been here for nearly 8 months. On October 29th it will be the eight month mark. I look back and think of what I have done and accomplished and I am a little disappointed. I only recently hit my stride […]



I have a bit over four months left on my visa for China. I have been here for nearly 8 months. On October 29th it will be the eight month mark. I look back and think of what I have done and accomplished and I am a little disappointed. I only recently hit my stride with my photos. The downside is that I can’t show them off yet because they are all on film.

I think of what I will be doing in one years time. This is something that I have been going over lots lately. My plans and ambitions have changed so much over the past two years. I never thought I’d be in China (that’s a bit of a lie – I had the plan, i just didn’t think I’d follow through).

I have been tossing around the idea of being unemployed for the summer and spend it in Canada, locked away in a darkroom, making prints and trying to get a gallery spot. After that it is really up in the air. Hong Kong can be heard calling my name. It’s calling pretty loud.

Reasons not to travel on National Day

October 12th, 2008 Permalink

People’s Square Fountain. ———————————– Street Meat guy.————————————- Choose your own adventure…———————————— Leaving the metro in Shanghai…Many people chose the same adventure it seems.——————————————– Keeping the peace.————————— There are days that Linping feels like a carnival. It is hard to describe, but think of twilight zone meets big fish. Today was a prime example of that. […]

People’s Square Fountain.
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Street Meat guy.
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Choose your own adventure…
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Leaving the metro in Shanghai…Many people chose the same adventure it seems.
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Keeping the peace.
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There are days that Linping feels like a carnival. It is hard to describe, but think of twilight zone meets big fish. Today was a prime example of that.

I was walking around with my ipod as usual. I was just about at the night market when I notice that there is a large gathering of people near the side of the road. I assume that it was an accident. People like to gather at accidents here, even a simple fender bender. I get closer and see that the commotion is on the sidewalk. I am able to see through a gap in the crowd.

A man with three trained monkeys is putting on a show. He is on the ground, tattered, dirty clothes smelling of wildness cover him and his belongings. Three monkeys are tied up with common cotton rope. The show consists of the monkeys punching him in the face and then running around screaming. He then gets up and yells at the monkeys. They pause, think, and then proceed to give him a kiss before socking him in the chops again.

The crowd loves it.

Not long after I approach, the second part of the act happens. An acquaintance of the monkey boxer comes over to me for my “donation”. This is done in a less than polite fashion. He literally grabs me and demands money. I shrug as I truly do not have any coins on me. He gets more forceful so I walk away.

I continue down the street. I pass one of the millions of China Mobile stores. As I look inside a scene from a Stephen King novels greets me. Three lone female employees in a store that could host a football game. All three with the same blank stare piercing me. Their eyes are locked onto me the entire time I walk past the windows and then the doors. It was as if their heads were all welded to a bar forcing them to move as one siamese triplet. My creep factor is maxed out.

I walk through the out door mall. Once again, a crowd has formed. This time it is a balance board – flip cup lady and her family. The mother stands on a balance board, all while using it to skillfully flip cups on to her head. For a finale, she flips a coin into the final cup on her head. Then she sends her daughter out. The young offspring is a master of contortion. She bends and rolls and puts body parts where they should not go. Before I can see her finish, I see the sons eyes lock on me from across the crowd. That is when I learn his skill. Spotting the person that most likely has money and finding a path through a sea of people to harass that person until they either give him money or walk away.

It is 7:50 PM and I am scared to go out for fear of finding the bearded lady or the getting recruited as the freak show, even though I know that I already am…