Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Teaism is Taoism in Disguise

The following is an excerpt from the book Liquid Jade: The Story of Tea from East to West by Beatrice Hohenegger:

The concept of the immortal soul was a natural extension of Taoist views. Finding anything that could help reach immortality was a central pursuit of Taoist alchemy. And because Taoists believed that it was impossible for a soul to reach immortality if the body was not healthy, physical well-being became an essential element of spirituality. The ancient Taoist notion of integrating mind, body, and spirit for good health is one of the main foundations of Chinese medicine to this day. When the first healers discovered tea they marveled at the multitude of benefits this magical plant appeared to offer. It kept them alert, it healed their wounds, it was an invaluable food complement, and it was a beverage safer than water. Tea was so universally good, for the body’s energy and vitality and also for the spirit, that Taoist alchemists believed they had found the answer to their search. Tea became their ingredient for eternal life…

…According to an old Taoist story, even Lao-tzu, the father of Taoism and alleged author of the widely read Tao-te ching, is seen with a cup if tea in his hand before departing this world. When Lao-tzu was a very old man, he saw that his wisdom was ignored by the people and started walking away toward the West. When he arrived at the Han Pass, he found one of his disciples, Yin Hsi, waiting for him. Yin Hsi told Lao-tzu that he had been waiting for a long time. He offered his master a cup of tea and persuaded him to stop for awhile and write down his teachings, which became the Tao-te ching.

In addition to the profound insight imparted by this sacred book, the meeting at the Han Pass is also credited as the origin of one of the friendliest and most common gestures in Chinese households: the offering of a cup of tea to a guest as a sign of hospitality. This is a Taoist act, complete in its simplicity.


David Denby: Snark @ Vroman's Bookstore

Vroman's Bookstore (695 E Colorado Blvd)
Thursday Feb 5 (7pm)

New York Times bestselling author and The New Yorker writer David Denby takes on the snarkers. He traces snark’s history all the way to ancient Athens, identifies the nine principles of snark, and presents his argument against it and the way it's used (really overused) today.


Porno & I'll Be There With You (Film)

Downtown Independent Theatre (251 S Main St)
$5 / $8 double feature

Jan 23–29
Daily (schedule)
It’s a standard B-movie horror setup: A group of young, attractive friends take a road trip to an isolated setting for a vacation filled with sex and booze. Toss in a demented groundskeeper and a trio of escaped convicts, and let the fun begin. Writer-director Akihiro Kitamura stirs the formula with hard-turn plot twists, animated demons that haunt characters’ dreams (but also make blink-of-an-eye appearances during waking hours), a stylish burlesque show, and — most importantly — off-kilter humor that’s at once frat-boy silly and David Lynch–absurd. At the center of the madness are Aki (Kitamura) and his girlfriend, Annie (Adarsha Benjamin), whose relationship flux is fueled by Aki’s commitment phobia. Along for the ride is Aki’s best friend, Yabu (Daisuke Yabuci), a guy of dubious sexuality whose subtitled Japanese conversations with Aki prove to be a major plot device. As the film unfolds along genre tropes, intermingling sex and violence, repeating but then upending the obligatory depiction of female victimization, it becomes darker and knowingly sillier. Low-budget but slickly crafted, and decently acted by its multiracial ensemble, I’ll Be There with You hums with wittily orchestrated ideas, including its own contribution to the reams of academic sociopolitical readings of horror flicks: the radical positioning of the Asian male as a vibrantly sexual being. (Downtown Independent) (Ernest Hardy)

Monday, January 26, 2009

The Integratron

George Van Tassel, creator of the Integratron, was a legendary figure, an aeronautical engineer and test pilot who worked for Lockheed, Douglas Aircraft and alongside Howard Hughes at Hughes Aviation . He was also one of the leaders in the UFO movement who held annual "Spacecraft Conventions" at Giant Rock for 25 years. Van Tassel said UFO channelings and ideas from scientists such as Nikola Tesla led to the unique architecture of the Integratron. He spent 18 years constructing the building.

In 1947, after an exemplary career in aviation, Van Tassel moved his family to Giant Rock in the Mojave Desert near Landers, California and opened Giant Rock Airport and a cafe called The Come On Inn. He leased four square miles of land from the government, including Giant Rock, a 7-story high, freestanding boulder formerly sacred to the Native Americans who lived in the area.

Van Tassel learned of Giant Rock from Frank Critzer, a prospector and desert dweller, who had excavated under the massive boulder to construct a dwelling of several small rooms protected from the fierce sun. Critzer had been killed in a explosion of the dynamite he kept stored in his rooms, the circumstances of which are still a mystery. The gutted rooms became storage for the Van Tassel family, but they slept outside the Rock and during the day tended the airport and their small cafe.

George Van Tassel began conducting weekly meditation sessions in 1953 in the rooms underneath Giant Rock which, he claimed, led to UFO contacts and finally to an actual encounter with extra-terrestrials when, in August of that year, a saucer landed from the plant Venus, woke Van Tassel up and invited him onto the ship. There the aliens gave him the technique for rejuvenating living cell tissues. In 1954 he and his family began building a structure they called The Integratron to perform the rejuvenation. George described his creation this way, "The Integratron is a machine, a high-voltage electrostatic generator that would supply a broad range of frequencies to recharge the cell structure."

His annual Spacecraft Conventions were attended by tens of thousands across two decades, featuring speakers that included high profile UFO contactees and pioneers in the fields of antigravity, primary energy research and electromagnetics. Van Tassel led weekly meditations in the rooms under the rock from the 1950's to the 1970's, which he claimed led to UFO contacts.

The family hosted their UFO conventions at Giant Rock for almost 20 years to raise money for the Integratron project and asked supporters for donations. In 1959, 11,000 people attended the spacecraft convention, and Van Tassel continued to work on the Integratron while writing a number of books on time travel and rejuvenation. Van Tassel died suddenly in 1978, after which the buildings at Giant Rock were vacated and gradually vandalized until the Bureau of Land Management found it necesary to bulldoze the remains.

Today, the Integratron, with its amazing architecture, sound chamber and high energy, still stands and is maintained by a group that offers public tours, special events, "Sound Baths," and rentals of the property to a variety of groups spanning many interests. Many visitors experience the Integratron as a very powerful vortex for physical and spiritual healing. Scientists who study the building call it "a mass battery" and a "magnetic room."


Paul Shambroom: Picturing Power

January 22 – April 5, 2009 [closed March 17-24 for private event]

Jan 29 Members Preview 5-6 PM: Gallery talk with Paul Shambroom and curators Christopher Scoates + Diane Mullin, Associate Curator, Weisman Art Museum, University of Minnesota

Public Reception 6-8 PM

Feb 10 UAM@noon 12:15 - 1 PM
Gallery talk with Christopher Scoates

Paul Shambroom: Picturing Power is the first exhibition to bring together selections from all five of Shambroom’s most important–and highly acclaimed–series to date: Factories (1986-1988), Offices (1989-1990), Nuclear Weapons (1992-2001), Meetings (1999-2003), and Security (2004-current). Shambroom, who lives and works in Minneapolis, has made an indelible mark on the landscapes of photography and political discourse. His series-based color photographs reveal both local and global manifestations of power, depicting scenes in industrial, business, community, and military environments. The exhibition is accompanied by a publication produced by the Weisman Art Museum, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis; with essays by Stuart Horodner, Diane Mullin, Christopher Scoates, Helena Reckitt, and Dick Hebdige.

Tuesday - Sunday 12-5 PM, Thursday 12-8 PM. Closed Monday.
Paul Shambroom Picturing Power will be closed March 17-24, 2009 for a private event in the museum.
UAM is closed for all University holidays - please check the web site for updated information.
Entrance fee $4.00; Free to UAM members and CSULB students, faculty and staff.

University Art Museum, College of the Arts California State University Long Beach
1250 Bellflower Boulevard
Long Beach, CA 90840
Telephone: 562.985.5761


Thursday, January 22, 2009


Some women make me wish that I had a penis and their phone number, Lou Doillon is one of them. And not just when she's naked.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Christian Jankowski @ Regen Projects (Art)

Regen Projects
633 N. Almont Drive
Los Angeles, CA 90069
Tel. (310) 276-5424
Fax. (310) 276-7430

Above All I'm an Art Lover
January 31, 2009 - February 28, 2009

Regen Projects II
9016 Santa Monica Boulevard (at Almont Drive)
Gallery Hours: Tuesday-Saturday, 10 am - 6 pm
Opening Reception: Saturday, January 31, 6 - 8 pm

Regen Projects is pleased to present Above All I'm an Art Lover, an exhibition of work by German artist Christian Jankowski. Conceptually based, his projects blur the boundaries between fiction and reality, often involving a dialogue with a specific social environment. Defying conventional notions of media and performance, Jankowski's past collaborators include magicians, fortunetellers and Customs guards. Exploring the position of the artist, he welcomes what is often a spontaneous or unexpected development as a result of his collaborations. Consequently, participants take on an active role in the work becoming contributors as opposed to subjects, and their association ultimately dictates the development of the work. Combining fictional situations with social interactions, Jankowski is able to create surprising and humorous intersections between popular culture, theatricality and the question of authorship. Employing the media of film and television, he is able to explore the art world and its discourse.

Jankowski's earnest engagement of his medium enables him to recapture art's mystery. His use of a circular mode of production presents a critique of the contemporary relationship between artist and viewer and attempts to break down the speeded-up forms of communication which have worsened our contemporary alienation. In addition, he embeds a strong sense of a human presence in his work through a transformative use of collaboration, humor, the subjective voice and the somewhat naïve manner in which he approaches technology.

An opening reception will take place at the gallery on Saturday, January 31, from 6-8pm. For further information please contact Jennifer Loh, Heather Harmon or Stacy Bengtson at 310-276-5424

Martin Luther King Jr

We have known humiliation, we have known abusive language, we have been plunged into the abyss of oppression. And we decided to raise up only with the weapon of protest. It is one of the greatest glories of America that we have the right to protest.

If we are arrested every day, if we are exploited every day, don't ever let anyone pull you so low as to hate them. We must use the weapon of love. We must have compassion and understanding for those who hate us. We must realize so many people are taught to hate us that they are not totally responsible for their hate. But we stand in life at midnight, we are always on the threshold of a new dawn.


Saturday, January 17, 2009

Mimosa Pale: Giant Vagina on Wheels (Art)

Artist Mimosa Pale's protest against the innate chauvinism of vehicles...

Shinichi Osawa (Music)


William F. Gibbs (Music)



The TerraCycle Story...

...is a tale of ultimate Eco-Capitalism. The company's flagship product, TerraCycle Plant Food™, is an all-natural, all-organic, 'goof-proof' liquid plant food made from waste (worm poop) and packaged in waste (reused soda bottles)!

It all started in 2001 when two Princeton University students set out to change the way people do business. Inspired by a box of worms, these students had a dream: a company could be financially successful while being ecologically and socially responsible.

Co-founders Tom Szaky and Jon Beyer were determined to turn the worm box concept into a real-life, commercially viable process. That summer, they developed prototype equipment and proved their concept was feasible by reprocessing solid waste from dining halls at Princeton University.

[the] story is a reminder about following your dreams. The pot of gold may require dealing with a ton of crap." -- CBS Evening News


Friday, January 16, 2009

Madre: Demanding Rights, Resources & Results for Women World Wide

January 2009

Join MADRE's live-bloggers on Inauguration Day, Tuesday, January 20th!

We'll be hosting a lively discussion about our expectations and demands for the future of women's human rights in the Obama administration. Visit our blog during the ceremony, and let us know what you think. What do you want to see from President Obama? How can we work together to advance women's human rights under the new & improved US administration?

Drop by our blog on Tuesday between 11am to 2pm EST and join the discussion!


Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Ron English (Art)

POPAGANDA: The Art & Crimes of Ron English is a film about the culture-jamming and billboard-liberation antics of Ron English. The modern day Robin Hood of Madison Avenue, Ron paints, perverts, infiltrates, reinvents and satirizes modern culture on canvas, in songs, and directly on hundreds of pirated billboards. Shot entirely guerilla-style, the film chronicles the evolution of an artist who offers an alternative universe where nothing is sacred, everything is subverted and there's always room for a little good-natured fun.


Monday, January 12, 2009

E Man Groovin' (Music)

I have to dedicate this to the smartest, sexiest, most scintillating man without a plan, my husband, E Man.

Fol Chen (Music)


P.O.S. (Music)


Center for Constitutional Rights (Politics)

Attorneys Release Detailed Report, Closing Guantánamo Easy as 1-2-3

Analysis on 7th Guantánamo Anniversary Shows Status of Detainees Largely Based on Nationality

Government and Commentators Overstate Difficulty in Closing Prison Camp

CONTACT: press@ccrjustice.org

January 12, 2009, New York, NY – Today, attorneys for Guantánamo detainees held a conference call to discuss their report on closing Guantánamo, including the newest and most comprehensive numbers and lists of detainee status by nationality. The three simple steps are: 1) send those who can go home home, 2) secure safe haven for those who cannot, and 3) charge those who can be charged and try them in ordinary federal criminal court.

Said Vincent Warren, Executive Director of the Center for Constitutional Rights, “On the seventh anniversary of the arrival of the first detainees it turns out the single most important factor in determining who still remains at Guantánamo is nationality— whether we're talking about the approximately 60 men who cannot be returned home and need other countries to take them in or about which countries have had the clout to get their people home. Closing the place down is not the great challenge it’s being made out to be. Let us close Guantánamo without delay and close this shameful chapter in our nation’s history. Let’s do it and be done with it.”

Yesterday on “This Week with George Stephanopoulos,” President-elect Obama called closing the infamous prison camp “more difficult than a lot of people realize,” yet the attorneys who filed the first cases on behalf of the detainees and are more knowledgeable about the issue than most disagree.

“One of the most important things President Obama can do is shut down the fatally flawed military commissions on Day 1,” said Lieutenant Commander William Kuebler, U.S. military defense counsel for Canadian juvenile Omar Khadr. “If he does not act in the first six days of his administration, he will be the first president in U.S. history to preside over the trial of a child soldier for war crimes.”

Discussed during the call were three simple steps to closing the prison camp and an overview of the landscape the next president will inherit next Tuesday. Attorneys described the ways President Obama will need to resolve issues related to:

The approximately 200 men who are in indefinite detention due to stalled negotiations with their home countries and the government’s refusal to embrace a charge or release policy;
The 17 Uighurs ordered by a federal judge to be released into the US;
The more than 40 other men who cannot be released to their home countries for fear of torture or persecution;
The pending military commission processes, such as the imminent military commission trial of an alleged child soldier;
The status of the habeas and appeals court litigation; and,
The debilitating conditions for the hundreds of men still detained at Guantánamo.

For a copy of the report, click here or download the attachment below.

CCR has led the legal battle over Guantánamo for the last six years – sending the first ever habeas attorney to the base and sending the first attorney to meet with a former CIA “ghost detainee.” CCR has been responsible for organizing and coordinating more than 500 pro bono lawyers across the country in order to represent the men at Guantánamo, ensuring that nearly all have the option of legal representation. CCR represented the detainees with co-counsel in the most recent argument before the Supreme Court in 2007.

Attached Files
12.01.09_CCR Report_Closing Guantanamo.pdf

Uproot Andy (Music)


Friday, January 9, 2009

The Long Lost (Music)


The Long Lost is playing January 15 @ The Dakota Lounge 8PM Santa Monica, Ca

Delorean (Music)


The Big Pink (Music)


Circlesquare (Music)


The Damned (Music)


The Matthew Herbert Big Band (Music)


Calmer (Music)


J*DaVeY (Music)


Shark Slayer (Music)


Telepathe (Music)


Metermaids (Music)


The Whitsundays (Music)


Crystal Stilts (Music)


Black Lips (Music)


Little Jinder (Music)


Black Holes (Music)


Old Money (Music)

ZZZ (Music)

Breakbot (Music)

Breakbot's remix of ZZZ's track 'Lion' is really good...

Sebastien Grainger (Music)

It really is a Flying V...

Land of Talk (Music)


Tokyo Police Club (Music)