daily life

Other news

In other news… yes, I am still in California – but I have plane tickets to Indonesia – I’m leaving in just under two weeks! Things have been… very… family. Holidays involved eleven people sleeping at our house on Christmas Eve. What else?

  • A crazy part-time money-earning-thing: I have been ghostwriting a screenplay, which makes for a great-can-only-be-told-in-person story – ie, the ghost part of the ghost writing – but suffice it to say, it has been a most amusing and educational experience – not to mention also, I think, by representing my official involvement with the film industry, unequivocally makes me a Los Angelino.
  • Crashing a car: I was responsible for the unfortunate introduction of a cement pole and a car in a parking structure – other than ripping off a side mirror, there was minimal damage – but it’s still, you know, a damaged car – and it wasn’t mine to begin with, either – and I think I am, from this point on, retiring myself from urban driving.
  • And, as of last week, preparing to leave for Borneo… for sometime between an entire year or maybe I’ll be coming back in March…
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    daily life

    An attic full of bones…

    I’ve been playing with bones!

    I’ve collecting data for my thesis project, that is. Measuring bones. Doing fieldwork. Very official. Very much hard work.

    … and spent all of last week in the coolest skeleton-filled attic ever. There were “my” chimps, of course, plus others that I won’t even pretend to be able to identify (especially not things with horns).

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    daily life personal essay

    The town on top of the hill. (In the flattest party of the country.)

    The snow has finally melted.

    I hated the snow. I was complaining about it constantly for the last two weeks, moaning and making every possible excuse to stay indoors. But now that it’s melted, I already miss it. I should have gotten a photograph. It was beautiful.

    Not that Cambridge isn’t always beautiful.

    My close-lipped brother – who speaks half a dozen languages but never uses more than half a dozen words to describe an experience (no matter how marvelous or harrowing), who says “fine” and can mean anything by it from horrendous to incredible, from whom getting a story is like pulling teeth, who has lived in Paris for nearly two years now but can’t be compelled to say anything more than that it’s “very French”, who studies at the Sorbonne itself and who himself is no stranger to some ornate facades carved from stone  – he said that Cambridge was a fairy-tale land.

    He said that there I was in Cambridge living a fairy-tale life in a fairy-tale land. Actually, I’m sure he must have said academic. He said academic fairy-tale.

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    daily life

    I graduated!

    This would be everyone. At my graduation!

    This is what it looks like when (almost all of) your entire family comes to your graduation. From halfway across the world. (Because they’re just that amazing.)
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    activism daily life

    Stokes Croft Riot: As we tweeted it…

    We tried - the few of us that remained seated - to restore some peace... (Photograph taken by Nicole Llyod. Borrowed because I'm in it.)

    Assembling these for an essay (twitter hashtag as piece of material culture, mediating personal experience, archiving the ephemeral) and thought they might be worth sharing. Tweets of a friend and myself during the second Stokes Croft Riot. There were many others tweeting, as well, although the main use of #StokesCroft has been post-riot, as we've been sharing updates, news,  follow-up discussion and analysis

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    activism daily life

    Rioting in Stokes Croft, Bristol

    The people are rioting in the streets. And it's not about the Royal Wedding.*

    Yes, I did say "riot", its not hyperbolic, and it's in my backyard. (Technically, my front street.)

    I got home at 5am this morning. After having sat in the middle of a street full of broken glass, surrounded by police dogs, riot vans, and mounted horseback police.

    I watched the police charge a crowd, watched a man go down under a horse. I watched the police march in, watched the neighbourhood transform into a post-apocalyptic re-imagining of the Haight Ashbury.

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    daily life travel

    Give the Pacific my love.

    What’s it like, being from Los Angeles? It isn’t. You’ve always wanted to go? Of course you have.

    Los Angeles exists only as rivers of head-lights and veins of brake-lights. Not a proper city, no center at all, nothing but a sprawl of strip-mall liquor stores and beach-front property twisted around freeway interchanges, highway overpasses, and motorway numerals. LA is movement, jerky traffic. Los Angeles is inhabited by cars driven by an enternally late, under-caffeinated, “Nearly-out-of-gas, lost-the-phone-number, forgot-the-directions, can-I-call-you-back?” simulacrum of a being that has been consumed by his or her vehicle’s need to be in constant motion. Snail-paced motion.

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