Gardening in the Tropics, you never know
what you'll turn up. Quite often, bones.
In some places they say when volcanoes
erupt, they spew out dense and monumental
as stones the skulls of desaparecidos
-- the disappeared ones. Mine is only
a kitchen garden so I unearth just
occasional skeletons. The latest
was of a young man from the country who
lost his way and crossed the invisible
boundary into rival political territory.
I buried him again so he can carry on
growing. Our cemeteries are thriving too.
The newest addition was the drug baron
wiped out in territorial competition
who had this stunning funeral
complete with twenty-one-gun salute
and attended by everyone, especially
the young girls famed for the vivacity
of their dress, their short skirts and
even briefer lives.
--From Olive Senior's book of poems, Gardening in the Tropics (2005).
Grace Jones photo by Jean-Paul Goude
Just a look at a few pages inside of Island, a history of the famed record label out of Jamaica.
Florence and the Machine by Tom Beard
"I have been working on a new project for sometime now, it's all coming along pretty fine...One great moment was while working one night at my Dad's workshop, he came outside to see how things were going. He realized I needed his help to get the angle on a component right, which was really hard for me to do alone on the metal bender... And that was the first time we, should I say... made something together, funny, I never imagined that moment."
CHECK the preview on Marlon's blog here.
Jesse Eisenberg and Justin Timberlake
in David Fincher's The Social Network
I first heard about Facebook at university, around 2004/2005. At the time, I was studying at King's College, London. Everybody at King's was on Facebook. Like for most universities, there was a special category for us on the website: our own network. But one day in class there was a heated debate going on about this new rival to Hi5 (you remember that other social networking site that was so hot before Facebook?)
In the middle of a class on moral philosophy, fellow student Rob passionately argued that the whole idea of Facebook was premised around elitism and exclusivity. At the time, I remember thinking, "gee what's Rob going on and on about? It's just a website! Relax bro! Sheesh." Rob then segued into further arguments about capitalistic society and Weber's iron cage.
When I then spent a year in Belgium at one of the oldest universities in Europe, Facebook became an invaluable tool to stay in touch with my friends. Once more, the website's designers had created a special network for the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven (believe it or not). This was a good way for me to stay in touch with old pals in London and to form new links with people I met in Belgium and elsewhere. Surely this Facebook thing was wonderful! How democratic!
Andrew Garfield and Jesse Eisenberg in David Fincher's The Social Network
Well low and behold, the new David Fincher film about Facebook, The Social Network, kinda makes it clear that the initial strategy of Facebook was, indeed, an appeal to the elitism of prestigious universities. It is now obvious that that original stroke of marketing genius, so crucial in getting word of mouth going in Facebook's first few months, was crucial to Facebook's success and is why a site like Hi5 has not done as well.
Facebook is no longer tied to that idea of exclusivity. But the feeling is still unsavory given how this film dramatises the life of Facebook's founder Mark Whatshisname.
The Fincher film is excellent, if a bit verbose (what do you expect from something written by Aaron Sorkin, writer of the ridiculously eloquent TV show The West Wing?). At its heart is a deeply observed character study that raises universal questions about friendship and dishonesty. It will also make you reconsider your Facebook profile.Well, at least for a while.
I await the 'Twitter' movie...
Rated: ***** FIVE STARS.
Dave Williams performs 'Roasted Swan'. Photo courtesy Rodell Warner.
When Dave Williams performed 'Roasted Swan' at a retrospective of the Noble Douglas Dance Company last month, the piece was not new. Yet, something about it was timely, given the current raves surrounding the new film, Black Swan, by Darren Aronofsky.
'Roasted Swan' was danced to music from Carl Orff's kicksy (yet powerful) Carmina Buriana (Olim Lacus Colueram). LISTEN BELOW:
A crucial part of this piece for me was William's all-black costume which had a slight sheen: oil like, yet also ashen. I made the following notes after watching this piece:
Here is the text from the music which accompanied the piece:
Once the lakes I swam upon,once in beauty sailed along,while I was yet a swan.Woe’s me! Woe’s me!
Black misery,now roasting fiercely!
Than the snow was, whiter,than every bird was, finer;now the crow is brighter.Woe’s me! Woe’s me!
The fire burns me fiercely,the cook’s boy turns and turns me,now the steward toasts me.Woe’s me! Woe’s me!
I’d rather sail the water,the wide sky, forever,than be a peppered diver.Woe’s me! Woe’s me!
Now in the dish I liewithout the power to fly,bared teeth before my eye –Woe’s me! Woe’s me!
Black misery,now roasting fiercely!
Well what do you know? It's been one year since I've been blogging at PLEASURE already! What a year it has been. Among the things I've posted on in this fairly batty space are:
* Stuff at Alice Yard, an "image interview" with graphic designer Marlon Darbeau, my thoughts on Boscoe Holder's male nudes, the relationship between art and politics and even reviews of the last general election manifestos!
* Interviews with Trinidadian/Irish novelists AMANDA SMYTH and MONIQUE ROFFEY, Trinidadian painter EMBAH and many others in our artist interview series;
* Original poetry by British-based Trinidadian poet VAHNI CAPILDEO and prose by Commonwealth award-winning Trinidadian writer BARBARA JENKINS;
* An in-depth analysis of the enduring problem of a lack of proper arts facilities in Trinidad and Tobago (this remains the most widely read post on the blog to date--overall, there have been 33,729 page views and 17,701 original clicks);
* And many, many photographs sometimes of slightly weird andbeautiful things.
Thanks to all my readers, followers, well wishers and everyone who's been tempted to look at the blog!
See you soon,