Thursday, April 28, 2011

Nice illustration of Zhang Qian (张骞) reporting to the Han court after escaping Xiongnu captivity

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Extended Pun List

  1. A backward poet writes inverse.
  2. A bicycle can't stand on its own because it is two tired.
  3. A boiled egg in the morning is hard to beat.
  4. A chicken crossing the road is poultry in motion.
  5. A dentist and a manicurist fought tooth and nail.
  6. A grenade thrown into a kitchen in France would result in Linoleum Blownapart.
  7. A hangover is the wrath of grapes.
  8. A lot of money is tainted - It taint yours and it taint mine.
  9. A man needs a mistress just to break the monogamy.
  10. A midget fortune-teller who escapes from prison is a small medium at large.
  11. A plateau is a high form of flattery.
  12. Acupuncture is a jab well done.
  13. Bakers trade bread recipes on a knead to know basis.
  14. Condoms should be used on every conceivable occasion.
  15. Dancing cheek-to-cheek is really a form of floor play.
  16. Did you hear about the guy whose whole left side was cut off? He's all right now.
  17. Does the name Pavlov ring a bell?
  18. Every calendar's days are numbered.
  19. He had a photographic memory that was never developed.
  20. He often broke into song because he couldn't find the key.
  21. I wondered why the baseball was getting bigger. Then it hit me.
  22. If you don't pay your exorcist, you get repossessed.
  23. In democracy it's your vote that counts; in feudalism it's your count that votes.
  24. Local Area Network in Australia: the LAN down under.
  25. Marathon runners with bad footwear suffer the agony of defeat.
  26. Police were called to a day care where a three-year-old was resisting a rest.
  27. Practice safe eating - always use condiments.
  28. Reading while sunbathing makes you well red.
  29. Santa's helpers are subordinate Clauses.
  30. She was engaged to a boyfriend with a wooden leg but broke it off.
  31. Shotgun wedding: A case of wife or death.
  32. Show me a piano falling down a mineshaft and I'll show you A-flat minor.
  33. The dead batteries were given out free of charge.
  34. The man who fell into an upholstery machine is fully recovered.
  35. The math professor went crazy with the blackboard. He did a number on it.
  36. The professor discovered that her theory of earthquakes was on shaky ground.
  37. The short fortune teller who escaped from prison was a small medium at large.
  38. Those who get too big for their britches will be exposed in the end.
  39. Those who jump off a Paris bridge are in Seine.
  40. Time flies like an arrow. Fruit flies like a banana.
  41. To write with a broken pencil is pointless.
  42. What's the definition of a will? (It's a dead giveaway.)
  43. When a clock is hungry, it goes back four seconds.
  44. When an actress saw her first strands of gray hair she thought she'd dye.
  45. When the smog lifts in Los Angeles, U.C.L.A.
  46. When two egotists meet, it's an I for an I.
  47. When you've seen one shopping center you've seen a mall.
  48. With her marriage, she got a new name and a dress.
  49. You feel stuck with your debt if you can't budge it.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Art Dubai 2011

Apart from the grand exhibit at Madinat Jumeirah, Art Dubai also sees many of Dubai's standing galleries get in the spirit with special exhibits. Taking the Art in the City's "ArtBus" this year (on both routes), I was able to see much more of the latter than I did last year. And of course, I could not miss the Bastakiya fringe art special (re-branded this year as the Sikka Art Fair). Select scenes and moments follow ...

My Art Dubai "artist tour guide" in his "cantordust" alter ego (note the cardboard box "costume"(note also the facepalm)). Last year, it was the Scifi Wahhabi - I seem to always get the cryptic ones. Not that I'm complaining.

Arabic calligraphy in red soap

Metal cast bike and rider

The proposed Abu Dhabi mastaba ... I remember this from IIT

Charcoal drawing, I think, but great effect with the lines

Acrylic stool thingy

I like the style in this one

Zero gravity termite mound

Happy happy, joy joy (the artist, Yue Minjun, is well-known)

Sharp pop art lines at Opera Gallery, DIFC

Restroom symbols at Pavilion, Downtown Dubai

There's a whole room full of these

Banana Surfer (we're out of silver)

I'm a Piscean, by the way

Alleyway sign on the way to the Sikka Art Fair

Panel discusses social media art promotion

Bronze fish mobiles at Bastakiya

Excellent choice of subject

Thermostat cosy

XVA's iconic doll

Nabil Amarshi's People Playing Music performs in the Bastakiya square

Letter to an Honorable Woman

Dear Jane Roe,

Upon reading about your terrible ordeal in Ghaziabad, I was, like many others, saddened and outraged. I cannot say that the circumstances are unprecedented, unfortunately. I am reminded of the similar case in nearby Noida almost exactly two years before, and of one in Navi Mumbai in 2007. Yes, for a woman to pursue her own happiness is seen by some as a sin. Retribution has to be threatened. And occasionally, dealt.

While you should have filed a report and gotten a rape kit done immediately, we can forgive that oversight thanks to the phenomenal stupidity of your assailants, who decided to rob you and your friend as well, thereby directly establishing a link between them and the scene of the crime. Your friend eventually gave in and reported the incident to the police. From all I have read, he, the police and your father are all behind the case against those men.

Your response? "The police cannot restore my honor"

Your honor?! Woman, who gives a flying fsck about your honor? First of all, we don't prosecute murderers to bring the murdered back to life. Secondly, if you were such a devoted subscriber to the honor/shame model of traditional society, you would be sitting at home waiting to get married off, instead of getting an education, getting a job and meeting internet lovers in the fields. While I fully support your right to do so, others clearly don't. "Tony" and his boys sure as heck didn't - as in the other cases I mentioned, these backward patriarchalists decided that "loose women" like you were outside the social Laxman-Rekha that supposedly protects "good girls" from the depredations of people like them.

Sorry, but you can't cross that line and suddenly decide to hop back when you get cold feet. Tony boasted that he was counting on your cowardice, and you know what? You proved him right. In the meantime, a woman call center worker from the Northeast was subjected to another horrific experience not too long before, and despite being a "visible minority," she cooperated with the authorities to bring those responsible to justice.

But you had a winning case practically dropped in your lap, and there you were wringing your hands and threatening suicide over matters of "honor." I wrote "had" because while you were playing the tragic Lucretia, the charges were dropped. Congratulations.

You know, Tony & Co. are unlikely to stop with you. Thanks to your hasty retreat, they and their ilk will be further encouraged to target "loose women" for the crime of being out on a date, or working late, or just being an independent outgoing person. Their victims' suffering will be in no small measure on your head. I hope you can live with that.

Yours Honorifically,