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LONDON  NEW YORK  LOS ANGELES  HONG KONG

RECOLLECTION

tepping into the Lima ight, Vivian and I were ost in the confusion of houting cabbies and did he the exact opposite of what we had planned. ccording to a State Department advisory, idnappings and armed obberies are common ccurrences near Benito uarez International. ersonal belongings are est stored out of plain ght to dissuade woulde thieves, and cabs hould not be hailed om the street, but ather from cab services. imagined our being eld at gunpoint by a wayward cab driver who uddenly turned on us fter driving deep into l Centro where he had ften preyed on silly ringos. By the time we had remembered he potential danger we were already speeding o our hostel, our hands raced against the car oors that seemed eebly constructed and ncapable of sustaining ny type of collision. The erceived danger was welcome and lended an lement of exhilaration. Our fears were amplified y naivete born out f privilege; our joys, owever earnest, were oys only a tourist could

[JULY 2011]

05


LONDON  NEW YORK  LOS ANGELES  HONG KONG

[JULY 2011]

05


CONTRIBUTORS HANNAH ROSS

JAMES WANG

GMT+1 [LONDON, UK]

GMT - 4 [BROOKLYN, NY]

Received her BFA from New York University, and her Fine Art PgD from Central Saint Martins. Currently is working in commercial fashion photography.

Received his Pharm D. from Rutgers University and is currently working as a pharmacist at NYU Medical Center.

Executive Editor.

PEN & IMAGE

Permanent Contributor.

05 [MAY 2011]


S

[MAY 2011]

05

BEN CARO

EMILIE PAVEY

COURTNEY ROACH

GMT - 8 [LOS ANGELES, CA]

GMT + 8 [HONG KONG]

GMT - 8 [LOS ANGELES]

Received his BS from Boston University in Film & TV and is currently working as a video editor for America’s Most Wanted.

Received her BA from the U. of Exeter in French & Spanish; and her MA in Translation Studies from the U. of Warwick. She is working as an editor in publishing.

Received her BA in Journalism from the U. of Oklahoma, while also studying at Cavilam language arts school in Vichy, France. She is currently working as an editor & writer.

Permanent Contributor.

CONTENT.

May Contributor.

[01] Jerk. [02] Tidying. [03] Large. [04] Follower. [05] Permit. [06] Perfection. [07] Tutor. [08] Loophole. [09] Continuity. [10] Downstairs.

Managing Editor.

[11] Smell. [12] Multiplication. [13] Amusement. [14] Screen. [15] Enough. [16] Overlook. [17] Justice. [18] Odd. [19] Danger. [20] Substitution.

[21] Recall. [22] Brass. [23] Innovation. [24] Fallacy. [25] Spy. [26] Interrupt. [27] Language. [28] Pattern. [29] Misfortune. [30] Divorce. [31] Overhead.

3


HOW WE DO GMT+8 [HONG KONG]

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


W O

1

A random word generator determines the daily word.

2

2) London [GMT+1] interprets using text or imagery, followed by New York [GMT-4], Los Angeles [GMT-8], and finally the Hong Kong [GMT +8], all within a 24-hour time frame.

3

Sleep & Repeat.

GMT+1 [LONDON]

GMT-4 [NEW YORK] GMT-8 [LOS ANGELES]

5


GMT

+1

[LONDON]

JERK. FICTION

HOW DO DANCE “THE ESSEX JERK”* The dance is called “The Essex Jerk,” whether you’re a boy or girl. But in describing a boy who jerks it’s: “Jerkin’” and for a girl, it’s not discussed. The Jerk was created in Essex**, a county in East England, northeast of Greater London in 2008 by kids born into trust funds that commonly rap about such themes as teeth whitening, wheat gluten, and branding yourself for synergized markets. We’ll start you off with the basics, then you can go faster and longer with more hardcore tricks, and you’ll be jerkin’ in no time! Slide to the front, now slide to the back, take it all the way back now, name drop this time, two times this time, left side let’s slide, left side let’s slide, Jerk real smooth. Now it’s time to get tofurky-jerky. Take it back to the back, skip of the hip, dip of the tip, right side let’s slide, right side let’s slide, how-low-can-you-go, down past your flan-nol all the way to the warehouse dance-flow, drop your glassless frames to the ground, punch the floor just like a hound—stooth button up jumper, big pumper, pump that stump til the beat don’t bump! * = For visual reference, please search YouTube for: “Essex Jerks it” ** = Essex is England’s New Jersey.

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

-4

[NEW YORK]

JERK. PHOTOGRAPH

7


GMT

-8

[LOS ANGELES]

JERK. COMIC

PEN & IMAGE

05 [JULY [MAY 2011]


GMT

+8

[HONG KONG]

JERK. NON-FICTION

‘Jerk’ is an obsolete term for a short, sharp burst of birdsong. I’m officially reviving it, corpora beware: That was quite a jerk for such a small bird! In Hong Kong, you may hear jerks from the following birds:

Red-Whiskered Bulbul Unmistakeable songbird with brown back, black crest and red and white cheek patch. Jerk: bulbi-bulbit bulbi-bulbit

Blue Magpie Distinctive magpie with sky blue back and black head. Jerk: pink pink pink currah

Great Tit Grey tit with black head. Jerk: brisk churr, loud siu-siu-tze, siusiu-tze

Japanese White-eye Discreet, greenish little fellow with distinctive eye ring. Jerk: tsee, tsee, trilling sounds

Hill Mynah Popular cagebird, glossy black plumage with bright yellow lappets on each side of the head. Jerk: Hello, Kung Hei Fat Choi, Puk Gai!

9


GMT

+1

[LONDON]

TIDYING. PHOTOGRAPH

Separate, but equal.

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

-4

[NEW YORK]

TIDYING. LIST

PLEASE MIX AND MATCH ON A WHIM: Contraptions/products that‌ 1. suck up dust and detritus, allowing for a hypo-allergenic environment 2. heat and straighten articles of clothing in a bespoke manner 3. rinse and purge feminine genitalia 4. extract bits of nutriment from oral cavity 5. are dragged across fabrics to render free of clothing fibers A. douche; B. vacuum; C. lint brush; D. iron; E. floss ___________________________________________________ if you score‌ 0 out of 5: Calmly relocate to nearest leper colony. 1 out of 5: Meditate upon puritanical maxims of cleanliness. 2 out of 5: Join comrades of Victorian era. 3 out of 5: Move to Williamsburg, New York. 4 out of 5: Promote proprietary facial-cleansing blend on public access television. 5 out of 5: Assume paradoxical lifestyle that advocates asceticism in spite of global inability to process waste.

11


GMT

-8

[LOS ANGELES]

TIDYING. MOBILE PHOTO

W Sunset Blvd. & Sanborn Ave. / Silverlake PEN & IMAGE

05 [JULY [MAY 2011]


GMT

+8

[HONG KONG]

TIDYING. VISUAL ART

Cardboard collectors outside Times Square in Causeway Bay.

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GMT

+1

[LONDON]

LARGE. LIST

THE BIGGEST FACTS ON THE UNITED KINGDOM Most Popular Tourist Attraction: Tower of London Most Popular Beer: Fuggles and Goldings Ale Biggest Debt (Current): £875.8 billion, 58% of National GDP, Net debt £2,252.1 billion or 149.1% Largest Protests: Anti-Iraq War w/ 750,000 (2003), Social Spending Cuts w/ 500,000 (2010). Longest Running TV Show: Strictly Come Dancing (1949-Present) Biggest Pop Star: Robbie Williams Most Famous Comedian: Stephen Fry Most Popular Underage Page-3 Girl: Samantha Fox Most Prescribed Medicine: Simvastatin, 37.3 (mio items sold) Largest Native Animal: Red Deer Largest Mythical Animal: Lock Ness Monster Current Top Billboard Song: “The Flood” by Take That Biggest Natural Disasters: London Tornado of 1091, Great Storm of 1703, and the 1884 Colchester Earthquake.

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

-4

[NEW YORK]

LARGE. MOBILE PHOTO

This woman sat next to me in the station and asked me how to get to Columbus Circle. I shrugged, and then was taken aback by her hair; a massive poof teased and hairsprayed to perfection, her balding scalp sheltered by a crown of cotton-like fuzz, her red, veiled scalp peeked through at the world around her.

15


GMT

-8

[LOS ANGELES]

LARGE. FICTION

FADE IN:

PEACE DUDE holding a clipboard.

Somber traditional JAPANESE MUSIC plays. The sun rises over the Pacific ocean.

GREEN PEACE DUDE: We’re worried about the increasing radiation levels from the nucleur reactors in Japan, which could effect the world’s fish population--

“WISE” JAPANESE MONK: There can only be so much death… NEWS REPORTER: The death toll from the quake in Japan has risen yet again… News images of the tsunami disaster. Buried cities. People displaced, sick and hungry. “WISE” JAPANESE MONK: Until life begins, once again, to prevail. Images of emergency radiation rescue workers in full suits and masks. Other people rebuilding houses. NEWS REPORTERS: …Rebuilding the city. …Stopping that radiation. A helicopter flying over the ocean’s surface. A ship. Cool water pours out of DECORATIVE POTS over a body. The music becomes traditional MIDDLE EASTERN and CREEPY. NEWS REPORTER #4: We’re coming to you live where the President has made a special announcement… The body is carefully wrapped in three pieces of cloth. It lies on automated table, which begins rotating with a ROBOTIC NOISE. A holographic bright-green compass floats over the table, the degrees changing as the body rotates. The rotating stops as the head points toward 79 degrees. The word MECCA flashes at the top of the body’s head. NEWS REPORTER #4: He has just stated that Osama Bin Laden is dead. Yes, we have confirmed, Osama Bin Laden is DECEASED. The body is lowered into the ocean via one of those hammock things. You know, like in Jurassik Park when they lowered that cow into the raptor enclosure. You know, one of those things. Helicopters fly overhead. NARRATOR: AFTER TRIBULATIONS…

A

SERIES

OF

TRIALS

AND

The water engulfs the body, bubbling over the cloth as if boiling it as it enters. NARRATOR: THEY THOUGHT THEY WERE SAFE… The peaceful ocean. Americans (fat, white) smiling, waving American flags. Crowds of college-kids rejoicing outside the White House and in Times Square.

COLLEGE GUY: Who cares dude? Osama’s dead! Nothing matters anymore! The college kid grabs the good-looking GIRL next to him and passionately kisses her. Everybody around them goes, “Woooo!” COLLEGE GUY #2: Dude, that’s your sister! COLLEGE GUY: Who cares! College guy and girl high five. EXTREME CLOSE UP and FREEZE ON THE HIGH FIVE. BLACK AND WHITE. FADE TO BLACK. NARRATOR: BUT PREDICTED…

THEY

NEVER

COULD

HAVE

The Atlantic ocean…. NEWS REPORTER: Increasing radiation levels… A fishing boat rocks gently somewhere in the Atlantic. A FISHERMAN sits down on the deck, and bites into a fast food cheeseburger, the to-go bag lying next to him. NARRATOR: THAT THE LARGEST SECURITY THREAT TO THE UNITED STATES… HAD JUST… He bites into the burger, and some KETCHUP squirts into his LEFT EYE. As he wipes it off with his hand, the boat begins to shake and he hears a rumble. He turns around slowly to see something huge RISING out of the water. NARRATOR: GOTTEN…. He looks up. NARRATOR: LARGER. It’s a gigantic Osama Bin Laden soaring above the boat. Lasers shoot out of his red eyes, his turban robotically spinning on his head. OSAMA 2.0 Beef is not HALAL!!! Osama leans into the boat, and the fisherman SCREAMS as he is engulfed by Osama’s massive beard, a hopeless abyss of hair which swallows up the boat. FADE TO BLACK.

EXT. LAFAYETTE SQUARE -- NIGHT Some COLLEGE GUY walks with a few friends next to a GREEN

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

+8

[HONG KONG]

LARGE. PHOTOGRAPH

King size 17


GMT

+1

[LONDON]

FOLLOWER. MOBILE PHOTO

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

-4

[NEW YORK]

FOLLOWER. VISUAL ART

19


GMT

-8

[LOS ANGELES]

FOLLOWER. POETRY

Finally a power I felt shoulders through lungs We stood barking hoping to call you wishing Come from where it is you’d come from The night wore blacker and blacker All us small Robes cut grandfathers’ bedsheets, and stinking, at first nothing, then stench Dug my toes in the brown dirt not going to miss this for any thing. Then he came And a roar out his chest reverberated. I dropped my watch I think but I couldn’t move my eyes “You seem to have dropped this, Kid.” His hands gruff stone statues like I expected them to be But in my late bedroom light I examined that watch Wasn’t broken But seemed to tell time differently. “I like your watch” said at school this black boy Tom. Thanks But I didn’t the same so I let him keep it Didn’t like carrying it around.

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

+8

[HONG KONG]

FOLLOWER. LIST

CHINESE WORDS RELATING TO ‘FOLLOWER’ (with unofficial Cantonese transliterations) 追 (jeui): to follow or pursue 1. 追隨 (jeui tsui): to follow (i.e. Mao Zedong, Jesus) 2. 追查 (jeui cha): to follow and investigate 3. 追究 (jeui gao): to hold someone responsible for something they have done Extra: ancient Chinese proverb with 追: 一言既出, 駟馬難追 (yat yin gei cheut, si ma nan jeui): what has been said cannot be taken back (literally: if you have said something, not even the speed of four horses can take it back) [Language consultants: Nicole and Mr Yim]

21


GMT

+1

[LONDON]

PERMIT. FICTION

ANOTHER USELESS DAY, TOWARDS A USELESS DEGREE. PART II. The prior night Evelyn was exhausted mercilessly by 9PM, but due to the basement’s dodgy washer/dryer appliances, she found herself well into her third-wind working away until 9AM. Whenever she would relax and coax herself into bed another nagging idea would hit her, which was probably due in part to the lull of Oracle Lab’s Psychology of Attractiveness Podcasts, featuring such topics as: 1. How our hormones influence perceptions of art. 2. How being watched by an attractive person can make you more trustworthy. 3. How a higher pitched voice can make you sound more attractive, AND suspicious. This state of being overly-productive is exactly how she learned CSS programming.

PEN & IMAGE

By 5:30AM. After a month-long hiatus for “Spring Break,” including an onslaught of nonsense Bank Holidays: 22 April (Good Friday), 25 April (Easter Monday), 29 April (Royal Wedding), 2 May (May Day / Wedding Hangover); the university course has finally reconvened to discuss upcoming final show. The Course Director opens the meeting with a call for invigilators for a public performance event by Kit Poulson, called “Rolling,” which is permitted by the Archway city council and will pay participants with “experience and a pint.” The two keys of professionalism. Evelyn zones out, imagining a synchronized dance of male pigeons twirling circles and misses out on the actual point, purpose, and execution of the performance. Probably budget cuts? Mocking NHS? Pork Barrel Legislation? No, no, that’s too American. Pigeons would be sweet.

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

-4

[NEW YORK]

PERMIT. POETRY

Before, I withered at life’s recoil. Left alone to foil those secret desires dreamt, the foolish visions. Grand visions, mad ones. Veils in the sun revealed as so much smoke drifting across my mind’s eye. Veils that cling fast, put a wind in the mast of a ghost ship on a voyage.

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GMT

-8

[LOS ANGELES]

PERMIT. FICTION

THINGS I PERMIT WHILE I’M AWAY ROOMMATE: Eat my milk or eggs [x], eat my “good” food [ ], use my computer [x], make out [x], use my bed [ ], make out in my bed [ ], use my toothbrush [ ]. GIRLFRIEND: Eat my milk or eggs [x], eat my “good” food [x], use my computer [x], make out [ ], use my bed [x], make out in my bed [ ], use my toothbrush [ ]. CLOSE FRIEND: Eat my milk or eggs [x], eat my “good” food [x], use my computer [x], make out [x], use my bed [x], make out in my bed [x], use my toothbrush [ ]. PARENTS: Eat my milk or eggs [x], eat my “good” food [x], use my computer [ ], make out [ ], use my bed [x], make out in my bed [ ], use my toothbrush [ ]. DENTIST: Eat my milk or eggs [ ], eat my “good” food [ ], use my computer [ ], make out [ ], use my bed [ ], make out in my bed [ ], use my toothbrush [x]. It’s only fair.

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

+8

[HONG KONG]

PERMIT. LIST

No fun 25


GMT

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[LONDON]

PERFECTION. PHOTOGRAPH

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


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[NEW YORK]

PERFECTION. COMIC

27


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[LOS ANGELES]

PERFECTION. MOBILE PHOTO

Sterile laboratory. Labcoats, lavaliers. Some warehouse in Long Beach, CA.

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


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[HONG KONG]

PERFECTION. PHOTOGRAPH

Every time. (Ice-cream van music: The Blue Danube)

29


GMT

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[LONDON]

TUTOR. PHOTOGRAPH

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

-4

[NEW YORK]

TUTOR. NONFICTION

A RECOLLECTION, A RAMBLING From the seventh grade to my senior year in highschool, I went to Mr. Hodges’ apartment every Wednesday evening for saxophone lessons. Mr. Hodges was kind and calm, but had a confidence suited to his stature; he was six-feet-four-inches tall, and his fingers were thick and looked as though they should not fit well on the keys. Perhaps his fingers did not fit well, but the fact that he progressed to a level of competence that enabled him to become a private tutor speaks to this issue of finger-girth as related to musicianship. After years under his tutelage, I have only a few memories of him. He was originally from Mississippi, cared for a cat named Hayduke, and kept Southern Living (or some other lifestyle magazine) in a wicker basket by his coffee table. I always thought it surprisingly fastidious of a man who seemed to embrace, at least what I thought was, a traditional masculinity. On a related note, I remember overhearing Amir in Band telling his buddies how he was completely convinced that Mr. Hodges was a homosexual. Amir’s sexuality was not in doubt, as he somehow convinced my friend at the time, Natasha, to fellate him under the stairwell, during school hours, right next to the art room. It turns out Mr. Hodges was not a homosexual; I saw him at a dinner party with a female companion who, I was told by a source of undeniable credibility, was his girlfriend. Not that any of this matters. But given that stereotypes, as offensive as they may be, also contain a kernel of truth, I can look back at that time he lent his copy of T.S. Eliot’s CATS to me, after I expressed interest in the Broadway adaptation, with a view of things as they are, and not as I wish them to be. Im looking at the Wikipedia description of “Hayduke”, and it appears that this character is from The Monkey Wrench Gang, by Edward Abbey, and has been appropriated by environmental activists to represent a hardline approach to activism, i.e., mischiefmaking. I remember Mr. Hodges explaining the Hayduke reference to me once, but I’m sure I was completely not interested. There was one Wednesday night I smoked pot with my then girlfriend (now, some girl’s girlfriend), and arrived later at my saxophone lesson. I would play one measure, and drift off so deeply into my thoughts that I could not find my place on the score. Mr. Hodges looked at me incredulousy, but calmly with those kind eyes. I explained how I was really tired with school work, and how I was sorry I couldn’t focus. I was embarassed at the time, but now I’m sure he knew what was going on.

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GMT

-8

[LOS ANGELES]

TUTOR. FICTION

The Sun finally hits “print.” She revels in each page that slides out from the printer, satisfyingly scraping against one another as they stack up. Her title sits perfectly at top: “Benefits of the Causal Efficacy and Imitation of Visual Representations in Other-Directed Society.” drops the manuscript in the envelope, the pages hitting the bottom of the envelope with a thud. The glue sweetly melts in her mouth after she licks the envelope. She writes “National Anthropology Review” and drops it in the mailbox. The next day, her students turn in their papers. One by one, the Sun watches these faces pass by her desk: some still dizzy from the late night of writing prior, some giddy from being done with it, some no different. She takes these papers home with her and begins to grade them in her grading chair by the window. The husband asks if she wants anything to eat, but she wants to get done with some work. Flip, flip, flip through the pages shoddily stapled, reading first sentences, deciding which she’d like to go through first. “Benefits of the Causal Efficacy and Imitation of Visual Representations in Other-Directed Society.” She read it again. One of her students, the Moon, had copied her article, word for word. I don’t understand, she thought. I just finished it last night. How could he have known? The Moon seemed to pay extra attention in class. He seemed to write down every word she uttered, important or not. The Sun wouldn’t be surprised to find him following her in the hall, eagerly looking like he had a question. But this was too much. There must be consequences. A month later the Moon was happy to hear the Sun had gotten her article published. The school had a few copies sitting in the lounge area in the College of Arts and Science, so he picked up a copy on his way to the Campus Café. He sat down heartily and sniffed in his overindulgent cappuccino as he opened the magazine. He saw her name in the contents, flipped to the article, then nearly burned his tongue. She had copied his thesis paper, word for word. He could see her scanning it into her computer, highlighting his name, writing hers in. These were his ideas, though it was validating to know that the Sun was following him. But this was too much. There must be consequences.

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

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[HONG KONG]

TUTOR. PHOTOGRAPH

33


GMT

+1

[LONDON]

LOOPHOLE. MOBILE PHOTO

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

-4

[NEW YORK]

LOOPHOLE. VISUAL ART

Unexploited loophole = plagiarize an artist 35


GMT

-8

[LOS ANGELES]

LOOPHOLE. POETRY

wind of Mt. Fuji too strong for even Bashō’s use of just seventeen

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

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[HONG KONG]

LOOPHOLE. COMIC

Merci à Noëlle Breham pour l’idée. 37


GMT

+1

[LONDON]

CONTINUITY. FICTION

Craig wiped the smudges from his metal-rimmed glasses on his navy shirt and squinted out the double-pane window onto the street below. Each day the parking regulations change which side of the street is permitted, so illuminated by the morning sunshine and echoed by birds chirping, his squint relaxes into annoyance with a sigh as he sees his car has been towed. Again. “Great way to start my day,” he thinks as he grabs his copy of the curious incident of the dog in the night-time, keys, and heads out the door into the pouring rain. The sky has been spitting out buckets upon buckets of water, soaking him to his core. He knew he shouldn’t have worn a white shirt today. Fiddling for his keys, he beeps his car twice to unlock and slides in. He always found the Morrison Minis attractive, and despite being a man of 6’1”, he never minded the graceless entry and exit. Driving it reminded him of a grown up’s go-cart. Looking over the rim of his Ray-Ban sunglasses, “Shit,” he checks his watch, “How is it already 1830?!” As summer approaches, the days are getting longer, and the sun stays out well past 1900. He remembers how unproductive he was when he would leave the studio at 1500 to darkness and go straight to watching serial television.

“What?” Craig looks around, and sees the street is clear. “Euhm, what car did you say you drive?” “You know this Todd.” “Today… You’re only allowed to park on the north side of the street. I think you’ve been towed.” Craig’s shoulders drop in exhaustion. “Gotta read the signs darling. Why don’t you pop in for lunch and I’ll bring you round the impound after.” Wearing only his gym clothes, Craig agrees, and steps inside the cottage for a quick breakfast bite.

Arriving an hour and a half late, Craig’s door is opened by the valet who is shaking his head. “What?” “You can’t park this here, man.” “Why not?” “Don’t got no space for an Escalade. Too big.” The attendant points to the lot where cars are double parked haphazardly. No love for an SUV. Craig gets back in the car. Dome Epais is playing on the radio. Picking up his Nokia phone, he dials his colleague Trent, who he had planned on meeting. “Where have you been?!” She demands in an accusatory tone. “Jeez ma, I just spent the last hour driving around trying to find this address. You know how it is for an F-150.” “Yeah yeah. Did you remember to pickup that purple ottoman?” “Of course, my vision is perfect, it’s in the back.” He arrives at his mother’s boutique off Hilltop Crescent, brimming with sweat. He wipes his brow as the sun beats down on him relentlessly. Reaching into the back of the sedan, he pulls out an antique Tiffany lamp, which depicts some kind of amphibian. “Looks lovely, thank you sweetheart.” His gay best friend Todd has been trying to find one like this for ages, and Craig just happened upon it in a thrift store for 30 quid. “Oh, no.” Todd’s face turns squinched as if he had eaten a sour candy.

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


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[NEW YORK]

CONTINUITY. MOBILE PHOTO

Doraemon x 10

39


GMT

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[LOS ANGELES]

CONTINUITY. COMIC

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

+8

[HONG KONG]

CONTINUITY. PHOTOGRAPH

A certain lack of continuity on this flyover in Lantau… 41


GMT

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[LONDON]

DOWNSTAIRS. PHOTOGRAPH

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


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[NEW YORK]

DOWNSTAIRS. LIST

SOUNDS DOWNSTAIRS, REAL OR IMAGINED: 1. stupid creaky third step on the second floor 2. Linda Blair 3. hippie drum circle

43


GMT

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[LOS ANGELES]

DOWNSTAIRS. NONFICTION

HOW TO DECEIVE MOM AND DAD: A RETROACTIVE GUIDE FOR ADULTS Staying Up Past Your Bedtime Hearing this phrase might initially cause you to conjure up images of cruising up into the driveway at 3am with your lights off, praying that the garage door is somehow open so you don‘t have to risk the dog going haywire as you desperately wrestle your keys into the main door. But no. No, no, no. I’m talking about it being perhaps 11pm on a school night and you’ve been in your basement the whole time talking on the phone with your “boyfriend,” or conversely, on the fifth consecutive hour of Final Fantasy. You know what I’m talking about. “No staying up this late playing games, Jack. You‘ll ruin your sleep schedule.” To be fair, the biologically natural waking schedule for young adults is staying up late, then sleeping later, but of course this is beyond the conventional wisdom of adults and your county school board. In any case, to make it out of this one, you’ll need to follow some specific steps. 1. Turn off the TV. If you’re smart, you’ll have turned off most of the lights in the house during the time you were supposed to go to bed, so you don’t have to worry about that now. Just make sure you’ve cleared a path to the stiars. 2. You’ve climbed from the basement no problem and walked the short hall to the staircase leading upstairs. Careful now. Cautiously walk on your tiptoes up the stairs, only stepping on the outermost edges of the stairs, where they are least likely to be used and therefore least likely to make any noise. 3. At the top of the stairs, it’s tricky. You’ll need to use the method of stepping on the outer-edges, but try to map out any structural sore spots during daytime hours, such as metal vents built too close to the floor. Use the walls as leverage — if done correctly, you should look like someone from the scene of a heist movie, acrobatically flipping over lasers and giving your future self arthritis. 4. The fourth step is the sneakiest. Instead of heading to your bedroom, hit the bathroom instead, strip down, and turn on the lights. If you’ve messed up and woken one of your parents, you can simply say you’ve gotten up to use the bathroom.

your breath, so if you soak that baby up, you’ll smell like you‘ve been scrubbing those teeth down all day. Of course, in the time it takes you to do that, you could actually be brushing your teeth, but that would mean that you‘d have to actually be brushing your teeth, which we all know is gross.

Getting Out of Brushing Your Teeth I don’t know what it is about brushing your teeth when you’re young that makes it seem so incomprehensibly unmanageable. Looking at it objectively, it’s hygienic, refreshing, and increases your chances of getting laid, or whatever it is kids get when they’re eight. Kids are developing at a faster rate than ever before, right? A kiss on the lips then. So despite the advantages, it’s totally uncomfortable and annoying. I get it. You don’t have to tell me. And if you lie to mom and dad, what will they do? “Let me smell your breath.” Then bam, the jig’s up. Your mouth smells like the Cheetos you had at 9pm and you’re screwed. So while you’re in the bathroom pretending to brush your teeth, you’re going to want to run the water for a little while, wetting the toothbrush just in case your mom decides to test it out like a freak. Second, squeeze a little toothpaste on your finger and wipe it along your tongue. The tongue is what directly affects

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

+8

[HONG KONG]

DOWNSTAIRS. PHOTOGRAPH

Abandoned home on Yim Tin Tsai island, Sai Kung. One of many… 45


GMT

+1

[LONDON]

SMELL. LIST

THINGS YOU PROBABLY SHOULDN’T BE SMELLING 1. Liquid Polycarbonate Epoxy Resin 2. Medium-Density Fibreboard (MDF) Trimmings 3. Tarn-X, Thiourea Metal Cleaner 4. Burning Polyvinyl Chlorides (PVC / Dioxins) 5. James’ Bedroom

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

-4

[NEW YORK]

SMELL. PHOTOGRAPH

Acetylcysteine (Mucomyst) smells like crap. Literally, it smells like a nasty rotten egg fart because of a sulphurcontaining functional group in the molecular structure. It is used for tylenol overdoses, breaking up mucus, and protecting the kidneys prior to receiving contrast dyes as part of an x-ray procedure. If it must be administered orally, nurses mix it with coke in a 1:3 dilution with coke. BEWARE.

47


GMT

-8

[LOS ANGELES]

SMELL. FICTION

HOPELESS MULTIPLE CHOICE SMELL TEST Inside each of the vials in front of you is a different scent. Please uncork each bottle, bring it to your nose, and inhale. Choose from the following answers which you think is correct. Take a breath from VIAL #1. What is the scent? a) lemon b) lawn grass c) basil d) oregano Take a breath from VIAL #2. What is the scent? a) mud b) paint c) pollen d) crayon This is a tough one. Take a breath from VIAL #3. What is the scent? a) mint b) burned rubber c) garlic d) honey Take a breath from VIAL #4. What is the scent? a) cola b) licorice c) chlorine d) turpentine

ANSWERS: 1) c, 2) a, 3) a, 4) d.

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

+8

[HONG KONG]

SMELL. PHOTOGRAPH

Tai On Building, Sai Wan Ho. All natural fresh fried noodles without health, safety or extractor fan. 49


GMT

+1

[LONDON]

MULTIPLICATION. MOBILE PHOTO

x6 Packages. x6 for me.

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

-4

[NEW YORK]

MULTIPLICATION. FICTION

“I’m not saying that you could be a professor at MIT or anything, but anyone can get a handle on some basic math, i.e., multiplication, lifeskills, etcetera.” Nate and Kathryn are sitting underneath an umbrella, each goggleeyed in black framed sunglasses. Their daily lunch-hour retreat takes place at any number of coffee shops and bakeries that exist in the venn diagram intersection of respective five-minute-from-work walks. When available, outdoor seating is always preferred. “Oh, so now I don’t have lifeskills?” asks Kathryn, who flashes a pupil from behind her shades. “Excuse me, while I crawl back into my mathless dank hole.” At this point, Nate grins wide and throws up his hands. “That’s exactly my point. It’s precisely because you are intelligent that I am thrown off by willful ignorance. Who is a ‘math person’ anyway? That’s like saying someone isn’t a ‘washing dishes person.’ ’Oh sorry, my wrists are preternaturally weak, better leave that dirty ladle for trained professionals. Boys, come on in…’” “You don’t have to condescend,” snarls Kathryn. “If I’m going to use a calculator for tip, then I’ll do just that. It’s normal; plenty of people do it. I don’t have to prove my mental math skills. Nothing to prove.” “Just move the decimal point to the left one and multiply it by two! It’s not that hard,” explains Nate, in a forced chuckle. “If you aren’t a ‘math person,’ then what exactly are you? You’re just trying to make this a thing. ’Look at me, I’m so creative. I don’t do tips.’ Stupidity is not an idiosyncracy!” Kathryn pushes back her chair with a wrenching scrape. She throws up her hands and chuckles to indicate that the matter has gotten too hot to handle. “I owe twelve including tip, or don’t you know that already?”

51


GMT

-8

[LOS ANGELES]

MULTIPLICATION. PHOTOGRAPH

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

+8

[HONG KONG]

MULTIPLICATION. LIST

The following are multiplying at an uncanny rate in Hong Kong’s older districts (hungrily gobbling up all scraps of local character): 1. Gong Cha taiwanese-style bubble tea takeways. 2. ‘3’ shops. 3. Loan sharks e.g. Promise, Public Finance, Credit Gain.* 4. The red banners of 田生地產 (Richmond Realty, an acquisition company) in windows (like a plague). *A TV ad for the latter featured members of the public and staff shaking their asses and singing show me the money…

53


GMT

+1

[LONDON]

AMUSEMENT. VISUAL ART

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

-4

[NEW YORK]

AMUSEMENT. POETRY

A girl—call her Hannah—was tired, in nonsense, daily, was she mired. So to work, she came nude, apparently, no prude, ‘twasn’t long ‘fore she found herself fired.

55


GMT

-8

[LOS ANGELES]

AMUSEMENT. LIST

THINGS I DO FOR AMUSEMENT/THINGS I DO TO WORK Age 4 Going outside and exercising/Reading a book Age 18 Editing videos at my friend’s house/Making sandwiches at Potbelly Age 22 Eating sandwiches from Potbelly/Editing videos at the office Age 24 Reading a book/Going outside to exercise

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

+8

[HONG KONG]

AMUSEMENT. PHOTOGRAPH

2/3

57


GMT

+1

[LONDON]

SCREEN. PHOTOGRAPH

The Royal Opera House presents “Live Fire Exercise,” featuring a Realtime 3D Projection.

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

-4

[NEW YORK]

SCREEN. LIST

people who look at/through screens: 1. peeping Toms 2. computer programmers 3. cinephiles 4. couch potatoes 5. coy geishas

59


GMT

-8

[LOS ANGELES]

SCREEN. FICTION

THROUGH A MIRROR DARKLY Saul was getting fed up with looking at her through the damn glass. He hated to fight with his girlfriend, but having to battle it out through two semi-translucent panes only made it worse. “I don’t remember it that way.” Her intonation was flat; was she being consoling or scathing? He tried looking at her eyes for any clues. He could made out just blurry splotches of white. Her eyebrows, too, just slightly darker scratches hidden behind the dirty wall of glass strapped to her face. “I’m sorry Sarah.” He left her then. The park was no better. On the way there he passed my scores of people on the side of the street. Suddenly he was worried about crashing into them, or merely having his pane of glass scrape across the side of theirs. Either way, the image of their faces colliding into each other, diamond-like shrapnel reflecting sunlight, exploding shards cutting across skin, through clear air, drummed in his mind. He felt uncomfortable lying on the grass now, his neck crooked from the window mounted to his head lifting it awkwardly off the ground. So he drove out of the city, out of the city to Joshua Tree. He kneeled on the coarse yellow dirt and looked at the sun, dark, dingy, a menace creature stalking prey behind brambles. “Get this off of me.” He felt a burning sensation on his forehead as the sun grew hotter and hotter. The mirror melted away, and his eyes were painful with brightness. Blue was blue. His skin seared in light, but he saw.

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

+8

[HONG KONG]

SCREEN. PHOTOGRAPH

In Chinese temples, wooden doors act as a screen between the front entrance and the altar. This is a public safety measure to prevent all the qi from gushing out onto the pavement at once.

61


GMT

+1

[LONDON]

ENOUGH. LIST

POLITE WAYS TO SAY YOU’VE HAD ENOUGH, ON A DINNER DATE AND/OR IN BED. 1. Indicate that you’re stuffed. 2. Change the topic. 3. Mention that you have to be up early. 4. Take a phone call and step out of the room. 5. Say the safe-word.

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

-4

[NEW YORK]

ENOUGH. NON-FICTION

Thinking out loud: Though it is necessary to presume free will in daily decision making, it may be that people have less control over how they behave than they would like to think. Our physical appearances, moods, general health, and even interests have been shown to be determined or at least heavily influenced by genetics. To what extent our actions are prescribed by our genes may be an unnerving thought. Consider the following: someone offers a second helping of mashed potatoes at Thanksgiving dinner; you decline the offer, politely, as you cradle your bloated belly. “I’m stuffed,” you say, “I’ve had enough”. This deliberate choice is a feeling that is governed by inheritable, biological factors that differ from person to person. From animal studies, we now know that feelings of satiety are controlled by an area of the hypothalamus, and defects in its structure make it less responsive to hunger-suppressing hormones. If feelings can be affected by inheritable differences in the brain, does it then follow that future potential actions are predetermined? What leads us to believe that actions are not as immutable as hair or eye color? Oh, you feel full, do you? Yeah, you would.

63


GMT

-8

[LOS ANGELES]

ENOUGH. VISUAL ART

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

+8

[HONG KONG]

ENOUGH. PHOTOGRAPH

The opening bars of Es ist genug by Sven-David Sandstrรถm, 1986. Text from a Buxtehude cantata.

65


GMT

+1

[LONDON]

OVERLOOK. NON-FICTION

HIS RECOGNIZABLE LIMBIC MECHANISMS ARE SO HOT. We will overlook a “nice” relationship if our limbic brain (reptilian) doesn’t detect their attachment mechanisms. Therefore, we always will choose a recognizable prototype, even if it causes misery. This odd occurrence can be explained as such: In being a social creature straying from ones prototype is limbically equal to isolation, coupled with the fact that loneliness outweighs most pain… We will continue to be drawn to what we recognize above what’s best for us.

HOW ATTACHMENTS ARE FORMED: Buried deep within the cerebrum are several large clusters of limbic neurons. Their determinations are based on social, emotional, and cognitive stimulation during the first few months and years of a child’s life. These are preeminent in the adult’s mediation and expression of emotional, motivational, sexual, and social behavior.

STEP ONE: ACCEPTING THAT YOU HAVE A PROBLEM: Alice Miller suggests that you can override your limbic intuitions: “No one has a natural propensity to feed on poisonous plants, but some of us do that all the same because we know of no alternative, because we cling to what is familiar to us, those things we have developed strategies to deal with, and hence survive. If someone is present to help us recognize the behavior patterns of our parents in the context of our own childhoods, then we will no longer be forced to perpetuate those patterns blindly.”

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

-4

[NEW YORK]

OVERLOOK. FICTION

Tom is pleased with finding an empty row of seats. He scans the row for vomit and sits down. Before he sees him, he smells him. Across the way, a man sits with his chin tucked deep into his chest. The man is thirty-two years old, but looks more like fifty. His feet are swollen and red, stuffed into tattered cross-trainers wrapped in black plastic bag. Tom scans the man from head to toe, reflexively shaking his head. The man awakens from his stupor and catches Tom’s eye. Tom shifts his gaze to the subway map behind the man. The announcer calls Atlantic Avenue-Pacific Street; both men rise in anticipation. The train jolts suddenly upon arrival and the man falls to the ground, his bags scuffling across the floor searching for a grip. Tom moves his arm in close for the man to grab hold of; his fists are balled up. Commuters pile in carelessly; a stroller bridges the gap, and rambunctious teens come in cursing, flailing book bags from one arm. Tom loses his footing in the sudden rush and crashes into the man. His face presses against the grizzled visage, his body nearly slips into the fold of a greasy trench coat. The man’s sweatpants are damp. Tom pushes himself up from the man’s body. “Sorry,” he says.

67


GMT

-8

[LOS ANGELES]

OVERLOOK. PHOTOGRAPH

Runyon Canyon. Los Angeles, CA.

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

+8

[HONG KONG]

OVERLOOK. LIST

HK PROPERTIES OVERLOOKING THE SEA (A SELECTION) Address: Block 7 Residence Oasis, Hang Hau, Tseung Kwan O, New Territories. Description: 3 bedrooms, southwest facing so you’ll be spending a lot on air conditioning, clubhouse with pool, above an MTR mall built on a patch of reclaimed land with no sense of place. Conveniently located a few stops from Hong Kong’s largest landfill site. But, sea view. Buy: HK$8.5 million Address: The Grand Waterfront, To Kwa Wan, Kowloon. Description: 4 bedrooms, on Victoria Harbour, Velazquez imitations in the lobby, chandeliers in the lifts and a clubhouse with massage chairs to make up for the fact that you and your kids live in a box on the 53rd floor. Next door to China Gasworks. But, sea view (if you crane your neck a bit). Buy: HK$16.8 million Address: The Grand Promenade, Sai Wan Ho, Hong Kong. Description: Renovated apartment on extremely high floor, spacious living and dining areas, balconies, fully-fitted kitchen and bathrooms. Full club facilites. Building is above a bus terminus. Faint odour of sewage wafting up from Aldrich Bay typhoon shelter. But, jacuzzi with 180-degree sea view. Buy: HK$24.5 million Address: The Lily, Repluse Bay, Hong Kong. Description: Brand new apartments (various units available) with ultra-stylish interiors courtesy of Nina Wang. The building may look like a gigantic urinal from the outside, but with those ultra-stylish interiors filled with happy rich western families in the brochure, who cares. And of course, stunning panoramic sea view. Rental only: from HK$195,000/month

69


GMT

+1

[LONDON]

JUSTICE. VISUAL ART

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

-4

[NEW YORK]

JUSTICE. MOBILE PHOTO

§30.12 Almond Packaging. a. when depicted to show details of aforementioned food product, the words “Enlarged to Show Texture” must be printed at a size no smaller than twenty-five percent of almond size, so as not to suggest to consumers that they are buying genetically enhanced almonds of a pleasing texture, generously dusted with salt.

71


GMT

-8

[LOS ANGELES]

JUSTICE. LIST

EVERY TIME THE WORD “JUSTICE” IS SPOKEN IN BATMAN BEGINS: 00:04:42

…and wishes to serve true justice.

00:18:24

Justice. Crime cannot be tolerated.

00:26:16

My parents deserve justice.

00:26:18

You’re not talking about justice. You’re talking about revenge.

00:26:24

Justice is about harmony. Revenge is about making yourself feel better.

00:26:39

You care about justice? Look beyond your own pain, Bruce.

00:36:12

But first, you must demonstrate your commitment to justice.

01:48:16

If someone stands in the way of true justice…

01:28:35

Justice is balance.

02:06:38

…and justice is more than revenge, so thank you.

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

+8

[HONG KONG]

JUSTICE. PHOTOGRAPH

Life is unfair.

73


GMT

+1

[LONDON]

ODD. PHOTOGRAPH

Newsstand by day, cabin retreat also by day.

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

-4

[NEW YORK]

ODD. LIST

ODD STORE NAMES SEEN FROM MY APARTMENT 1. Skazzy Cafe 2. God Is…Restaurant 3. Natty Garden 4. Diva Desires.Com

75


GMT

-8

[LOS ANGELES]

ODD. MOBILE PHOTO

Guard Dog.

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

+8

[HONG KONG]

ODD. VISUAL ART

The bubble-eye goldfish variety, native to China and Japan, is characterised by upward-facing eyes surrounded by large, fluid-filled sacs. These sacs jiggle as the bubble-eye swims. They can easily be punctured by sharp aquarium ornaments (terracotta pagodas, decorative amphoras) so care must be taken in selecting the decor for the tank. The bubble-eye can’t compete for food with more agile and fast-moving goldfish due to its poor eyesight. Poor bubble-eye!

77


GMT

+1

[LONDON]

DANGER. LIST

Things that are Dangerous : What they Destroy 1. Fortnum & Mason : my wallet 2. Sedaris Anthology : my time 3. Local Pubs : my abs 4. Chronology Protection Conjecture : my relativity 5. Adorable Kittens : my ruthlessness

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

-4

[NEW YORK]

DANGER. NON-FICTION

A RECOLLECTION Stepping into the Lima night, Vivian and I were lost in the confusion of shouting cabbies and did the the exact opposite of what we had planned. According to a State Department advisory, kidnappings and armed robberies are common occurrences near Benito Juarez International. Personal belongings are best stored out of plain sight to dissuade would-be thieves, and cabs should not be hailed from the street, but rather from cab services. I imagined our being held at gunpoint by a wayward cab driver who suddenly turned on us after driving deep into El Centro where he had often preyed on silly gringos. By the time we had remembered the potential danger we were already speeding to our hostel, our hands braced against the car doors that seemed feebly constructed and incapable of sustaining any type of collision. The perceived danger was welcome and lended an element of exhilaration. Our fears were amplified by naivete born out of privilege; our joys, however earnest, were joys only a tourist could feel.

79


GMT

-8

[LOS ANGELES]

DANGER. FICTION

Compose mail: Jesse, unable to start work on 407 due to the J drive being offline. I don’t know how or if I should mount the drive, so I’ll run the package to 1806 Century Park. Their office doesn’t open until at least 7 a.m. though, so I’ll have to wait in the lobby with security. I’ll keep you updated. Thanks! He presses send and Inbox (18). “I lie awake in your briefcase, and haven’t moved since last Sunday when you took me to Valley Park. I’m vacant. You’ve barely written your name in me yet. These spaces ache, bone dry without ink. The longer you wait, the harder I fear it’ll be for you to write. I fear you won’t come back.” Timecode 00:01:46:20 entered into the first column of Line 45, P.5 in the second. Tab then Enter, and he’s online 46. Timecode 00:02:02:25 into the first column, P.6 in the second. Tab. Enter. “Hey Paul, haven’t seen you in awhile. I’m going to some show in Los Feliz and probably grabbing drinks after with Jake. Seriously, haven’t seen you in weeks. You should come! All right. See you.” He looks at the dashboard of his car, lined with dust, wondering is this taking a toll on you? Mileage counter reads 42.2 from last return time 5:14 p.m. He presses the hard plastic knob and the ticker satisfyingly snatches back to 0. He steps on the pedal and thrusts himself into a wall of slowly moving cars, which he rides all the way to his apartment, sun setting on him. “You don’t have me as much anymore because you don’t get enough sleep, but tonight you’re not where you were when you first closed your eyes. It’s damp, and you’re having trouble moving your legs to walk. Before you take three steps you run into a tree, although the bark simply smothers you, hugging your shoulders. Trees shoot out of the ground in all directions so that the forest gets smaller but the trees get more. You see a large oak with a gaping hole in its trunk, and green light emanates from its center. You’re drawn to it. The particles of light form your name, and you want to touch it, but the gap starts to shut and shut and the glow of the dust gets faint and cramped. Soon it’s swallowed by the trunk. Everything is dark except for the seared memory of your name, and you simply sleep without me.”

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

+8

[HONG KONG]

DANGER. PHOTOGRAPH

81


GMT

+1

[LONDON]

SUBSTITUTION. MOBILE PHOTO

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

-4

[NEW YORK]

SUBSTITUTION. FICTION

“Mr. Hendrikson is out for today. I’m your substitute, Mr. Molarin. Please take out all writing utensils you may have in your possession and place them on your desk,” says a thin, tall man in a tweed suit with a white mustache and a gaunt face that looks as if he is purposely sucking in his cheeks. And perhaps he is, or had in the past, though instead of lending him a silly or vain air, as a male model may convey, Mr. Molarin’s face had seemed to cave in on itself after years of maintaining a concerned pucker of the lips. “What is your name, son? Marvin? Please, Marvin, if you would collect the pens for me?” He brusquely sweeps Larissa’s seven utensils into a wicker tray as an example. The pencil that Larissa uses most often has, perched on top of the eraser, a chunky white unicorn with pink hair. The class twitters with excitement and takes this sudden lapse in tension to shoot each other looks of disbelief. Larissa looks up from her desk quizzically and then turns away from Mr. Molarin’s gaze. Though not an unkind man, he commands attention and has a seriousness about him that makes others want to please him, or else stay at a distance for fear of rejection. “I am collecting your writing utensils and do not intend to return them. I mean for you to listen in this class, with care and precision. There will be no time to refer to notes; tests of your intellect and vitality will require a good memory.” Billy in the third row croaks a concern: “But what can you teach in two class periods? Also, we’re in the eighth grade.” Marvin returns to his seat, having left the wicker tray on Mr. Molarin’s desk. Mr. Molarin creeps over to the tray and dumps all the pens and pencils into a scuffed-up black leather attache. To close the case, Mr. Molarin lays the attache on the desk and presses down with his weight so that his feet are suspended with each thrust. The sound of snapping pencils ring out eerily in the quiet room as if the very foundations of the class were giving way to something at the same time fantastic and dangerous.

83


GMT

-8

[LOS ANGELES]

SUBSTITUTION. POETRY

Drifting from word to word, lovely black ink on book’s glowing tarmac, I read at home. But when the light bulb flickers overhead, the page flat darkening for a moment I am distracted. Some plane has passed overhead flickering past sunlight, and I’m out, breeze patting my forehead gently, gently reminding. I reach into the earth, and as a bookmark tear out a soiled leaf.

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

+8

[HONG KONG]

SUBSTITUTION. LIST

DISHES AS PRINTED ON THE FIRST PAGE OF THE MENU OF GOLDEN VEGETARIAN FOOD LTD (Chinese Buddhist restaurant, Shau Kei Wan, Hong Kong) “Vegetarian food is the Priceless Treasure to your health.” 1. Vege. Pork Hock 2. Vege. Smoked Goose 3. Vege. Roasted Duck 4. Vege. Duck Kidney 5. Vege. Chicken 6. Vege. Roasted Duck (again, but appears to be a different colour) 7. Curry Gluten 8. Sweet & Sour Gluten 9. Soya Gluten Below: No. 3

85


GMT

+1

[LONDON]

RECALL. MOBILE PHOTO

Replacement facade.

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

-4

[NEW YORK]

RECALL. POETRY

These thoughts and actions are reconsidered, put out of circulation

87


GMT

-8

[LOS ANGELES]

RECALL. LIST

OTHER VERSES FROM THE BIBLE PEOPLE HAVE HAD TO RECALL: 1. Corinthians 14:32-35: Women should keep silent in church and are commanded to be under obedience. If they have any questions they can ask their husbands. 2. Leviticus 25:44: God condones slavery. 3. Genesis 3:16: Women should submit to their husbands. 4. Luke 19:7: Have enemies? Kill them. 5. Leviticus 21:9: If a priest’s daughter loses her virginity before she is married, she can receive the death penalty by incineration.

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

+8

[HONG KONG]

RECALL. PHOTOGRAPH

Memories of King Kowloon Exhibition at ArtisTree, Taikoo Place

89


GMT

+1

[LONDON]

BRASS. PHOTOGRAPH

There once was a man from Wellingbourough, Who selected a home- now in escrow, He viewed the patina under glass, Found the copper really was brass, So he settled for a home in Market Harbourough.

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

-4

[NEW YORK]

BRASS. LIST

WAYS TO DETERMINE WHETHER MY ROOMMATE IS MADE OF BRASS OR GOLD: 1. See if he is attracted by a magnet: brass is an alloy of zinc and copper, and will be attracted by a magnet, whereas gold will not be. 2. Dip in muriatic acid: Gold will not react, but brass will turn dark brown. 3. Conduct density test: Fill bathtub to the brim with water and place roommate in the tub. Catch whatever water spills out and weigh it. Weigh roommate separately. The weight ratio of roommate to water will be 8.5. Conclusion: roommate is made of neither brass nor gold

91


GMT

-8

[LOS ANGELES]

BRASS. NON-FICTION

In 2004 a young woman was standing at the Food Store on St. Philip & North Robertson, a pretty busy corner in the neighborhood of Treme. She watched as police pulled up behind the truck of Joe Williams, then the 22-year-old trombonist for the Hot 8 Brass Band, and shoot him nine times. In the NOPD police report, cops say Williams was pulled over for driving an allegedly stolen vehicle when he suddenly reversed into the police cruiser. This made cops fear for their safety and fire on him. Not what she saw, the young woman said, recalling the blood running down a long streak along the street. With police around, neighbors expected the paramedics to drop by shortly. “But I didn’t see one ambulance, other people didn’t see any ambulance,” said Raymond Williams, another member of the band. “That became a question in the crowd:’Why no ambulance?’” Something the top brass have yet to answer.

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

+8

[HONG KONG]

BRASS. FICTION

My hobby My name is Thomas Siu. I am eleven years old. I am a Primary 6 student at St. Joseph’s Primary School. My father is a banker and my mother is a lawyer. We live in the Mid-levels. Tonight I have piano lesson. My helper is taking me. I do not like piano. I want to play the trumpet. My mother says piano is important. I am working towards grade 8. I practise for an hour and a half every evening, before my mother comes home. I am very good. My helper sits with me. She turns the pages. At the moment I am learning Nocturne in B by Chopin. My helper says it sounds like a piano concert. My helper has never been to a piano concert. She is from Indonesia. She likes to listen to me play, but I don’t like to play. I want to play the trumpet. My father has not heard Nocturne in B by Chopin yet. He didn’t hear me play my grade 7 pieces either. He was pleased that I got a ‘distinction’ though, because he said ‘make sure you get a distinction for grade 8’. He gave me 200 dollars. He said I will get 500 dollars for my grade 8. I don’t want 500 dollars. I want a trumpet. My helper is saying that it is time to go to piano lesson. We will take a taxi there. My piano teacher is Mr Lai. Mr Lai also teaches trumpet. I always hear the student before me finishing her trumpet lesson. She is not very good. Her mother or her father waits for her outside Mr Lai’s music room. When she comes out, her mother hugs her, or her father says ‘well done’. Sometimes, the girl looks at me and smiles, carrying her trumpet.

93


GMT

+1

[LONDON]

INNOVATION. LIST

Things that need no innovation: 1. The Roaming Marches / Day X 2. Members of the Royal Family on the Civil List 3. Andrew Lansley’s Privatization of the NHS 4. DPM Nick Clegg’s Fiscal Stance With ‘Yellow Bastards’ 5. Downing Street

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

-4

[NEW YORK]

INNOVATION. FICTION

SECULAR FAIRY TALES: According to David Attenborough’s Life in the Undergrowth, scorpions are related to euryptids, or sea-scorpions, which are among the first terrestrial organisms trailing behind the horseshoe crab. Despite the distinction in name, both creatures were aquatic at one point, though scorpions crawled ashore later to sire the modern equivalent, or true-scorpions. The transition to land requires dramatic changes in biology, some minor and others more dramatic; scorpions survived by developing a different breathing and feeding apparatus. Instead of open membranes underneath the abdomen that flapped around in the water to extract oxygen, as in aquatic scorpions, land species have membranes secured by chitinous plates which are perforated to allow passage of oxygen. Another anatomical difference in terrestrial scorpions is the presence of an outer structure over the mouth in which food is deposited, digested by gastric acids and then sucked up like a soup. This would have been impossible underwater. To this day, some scorpions can survive up to two days underwater, a useful remnant of their watery dealings in the past.

95


GMT

-8

[LOS ANGELES]

INNOVATION. FICTION

GOOGLE SUN ROB: Hey can you check the weather for me? BEN: Sure thing. Ben turns around and looks at the window. It’s sunny and warm looking outside. BEN: Looks like it’s partly sunny. High of 70. ROB: Thanks. BEN: How did they ever check the weather before Google decided to merge with the Sun? ROB: I have no idea because Google Sun is freaking amazing. BEN: Yeah, like, when it’s hot outside, Google Sun’s like, “Now you can step outside, and the heat of the sun will let you know how hot it is, based on how you feel.” ROB: The weather plugin is pretty sweet. You download it, and if it’s raining outside, the sun will have this cute little cloudy theme that really provides like a gloomy atmosphere to match up with the weather. BEN: I use it for infinity. ROB: I use it for more than that. Like I use it not only for aesthetics, but as an informational tool. When it gets to be nighttime, Google Sun like completely goes away, telling me approximately what time of day it is, and whether or not it’s nighttime. BEN: Wow. I just thought that was for decoration. ROB: No. You can like use that information to tell whether you should go to work or to go to sleep. BEN: That’s really good.

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

+8

[HONG KONG]

INNOVATION. PHOTOGRAPHY

INNOVATIVE USES OF THE COATHANGER

Fig. A. to dry duck

Fig. B. to dry fish

97


GMT

+1

[LONDON]

FALLACY. MOBILE PHOTO

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

-4

[NEW YORK]

FALLACY. NON-FICTION

An affirmative conclusion from a negative premise argues two universal premises and a particular conclusion which elicits major undistributed middles from affirmative premises. Structural flaws over content appeal to law, ignorance, repetition, and begs the question: the consequence of the phenomenon is its root logical disjunction?

99


GMT

-8

[LOS ANGELES]

FALLACY. POETRY

A rt C annot R easonably O ffer S ignificant T ruths If C reated O ver R igid C onstructs, R egarding A crostic P oems. ?

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

+8

[HONG KONG]

FALLACY. COMIC

Pathetic fallacy = anthropomorphism

101


GMT

+1

[LONDON]

SPY. PHOTOGRAPH

Bad spy. PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

-4

[NEW YORK]

SPY. POETRY

rustles overheard hidden eyes all around me secret lives of others

103


GMT

-8

[LOS ANGELES]

SPY. LIST

CONTENTS OF MY BRIEFCASE 1. a laptop computer 2. a laptop computer powercord 3. a travel-sized roll-on deoderant 4. One-A-Day Energy vitamins 5. an Ocean nasal spray 6. two checkbooks 7. five membership cards 8. a gun

CONTENTS OF MY NIGHTSTAND 1. earplugs 2. a razor blade 3. vitamin C tablets 4. a Men’s Fitness magazine 5. a $1 bill 6. a small photo album 7. an iTunes gift card 8. a gun

CONTENTS OF MY HEART 1. an aorta 2. a superior vena cava 3. a right atrium 4. a left atrium 5. a cardiac muscle 6. a pulmonary artery 7. an inferior vena cava 8. a gun

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

+8

[HONG KONG]

SPY. PHOTOGRAPH

Just checking my neighbour isn’t up to any counter-revolutionary shenanigans.

105


GMT

+1

[LONDON]

INTERRUPT. PHOTOGRAPH

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

-4

[NEW YORK]

INTERRUPT. LIST

INTERRUPTIONS AND WAYS BY WHICH WE BENEFIT 1. Coitus interruptus: potential means of birth control. 2. Someone cutting into conversation: saved from another’s egotistical blather. 3. Unmanageable precipitation: snow day. 4. Office Assistant Paperclip in Microsoft Office ‘98: develop saintlike tolerance.

107


GMT

-8

[LOS ANGELES]

INTERRUPT. MOBILE PHOTO

Excuse me, gorgeous butterfly. I’m trying to enjoy myself. Please disengage from my shoe.

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

+8

[HONG KONG]

INTERRUPT. PHOTOGRAPH

Not a good time.

109


GMT

+1

[LONDON]

LANGUAGE. LIST

UNNECESSARY USES OF LANGUAGE 1. Emoticons. 2. Suggestions to other drivers, behind closed windows. 3. Constructive criticism on others’ tattoos. 4. Scientific name for Western Lowland Gorilla (Gorilla Gorilla Gorilla). 5. Esperanto.

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

-4

[NEW YORK]

LANGUAGE. NON-FICTION

SOME THOUGHTS: In the “Origins of Language� Renee Magritte displays a single promontory jutting out of a body of water under a bright sky scattered with nimbus clouds. Focusing on the promontory, one notices the isolation of the platform in what may be an endless expanse of water. The image appears to be a sort of logical puzzle in which one is forced to fill in the gaps. The positioning of the elements themselves poses questions, and encourages a narrative to be developed to explain what is presented. From what vantage point is the viewer seeing this platform? One feels an urge to inject humanity into the scene, to see themselves, perhaps, staring out from the frame, perched on a rock in utter solitude. As much as the painting seems to accomodate a fictitious narrative, or emotionally parallel our own isolation as individuals, to be so eager to draw symbols is literally seeing what is not there. The very awareness of yourself, the painting, the lonely image, answers in part the question of language and the ability to philosophize, emote, and ponder the strange and fantastic. Whether you know the title of the piece upon seeing it is irrelevant insofar as your innate capabilities of language. The painting engages your senses and produces language whether internal or external. In this way Magritte makes one use language as opposed to merely explaining its origins, though some have tried that too: The Biblical account of the Tower of Babel seems a feeble attempt in comparison.

111


GMT

-8

[LOS ANGELES]

LANGUAGE. FICTION

VARIOUS LANGUAGES’ INTERNET DATING PROFILES Name: Spanish Sex: Female Interested in: All of the men About me: Hey, guys. ;) If you want to be with me, you better be able to handle me. I’m fiery and I don’t like slang, but if you give me a call, you’ll have a good time. I will take you to the back of the bar and drag you into the dirty, graffiti-ridden bathroom. I’ll push you up against the tiles, lit green in fluorescent light, and you’ll fall in love. Name: French Sex: Female Interested in: Mostly women About me: Hello, everyone. I enjoy working out, usually pilates, yoga. I swim. And I’m very flexible. I twist in ways you wouldn’t believe. We can hang out anytime, if you don’t mind my slightly smokey smell. My parents used to smoke a lot, so my clothes are covered in it. If you ask me to dinner, I’ll bring wine. Name: German Sex: Male Interested in: Business About me: Most people say I look like shit, but I get the job done! Don’t message me unless you ABSOLUTELY HAVE INTEREST. I hate when I get messaged, otherwise. Like most things it makes me angry! I’m so angry! Name: English Sex: Female Interested in: A lot of friends About me: Hi, I’m English! I love hanging out with all sorts of people. I’m not really interested in anything serious (Unless you’re British! I love accents!), but I love having lots and lots of friends. Even if someone’s dating somebody else, they’ll call me just to have me along. I don’t know why people even like me I’m basically normal lol! I’m hard to get along with, but I come in handy I guess. I come from a rich family, so I guess I ppl just want to look good! :P Name: Chinese Sex: Male Interested in: No one About me: More interested in style than content. Thank you.

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

+8

[HONG KONG]

LANGUAGE. PHOTOGRAPH

The official languages of Hong Kong are Chinese and English. All signs, official forms, and so on are bilingual. This sign, however, remembers a time when English, not Chinese, came first ‌

113


GMT

+1

[LONDON]

PATTERN. MOBILE PHOTO

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

-4

[NEW YORK]

PATTERN. FICTION

WHAT YOUR FAVORITE PATTERN SAYS ABOUT YOU: COMMENTS FROM A CANDIED NUT VENDOR/FASHIONISTA What you wear is how you express yourself to the world. Here are some ways to enhance your sexual desirability, as well as communicate your sense of self. Plaid: You were an ugly duckling who wore your older sister’s Siouxsie and the Banshees t-shirt to bed. You enjoy wearing greasy sweatpants in your leisure time and feel an affinity for the outdoors. Wear plaid to make known your folksy mid-western origins, buffalo plaid if you are a hipster from 2008. Paisley: You are one of two things: a hopeless romantic or a shlub who has rifled in your papa’s wardrobe. If the former is true, work those two-tone wingtips sockless and tie that paisley ascot tight because making your superiority known is not a cake walk—don’t forget to cuff your chinos so as to avoid the filth black-splash of the common man. If the latter is true, chest hair is best hidden from the light of day, so button up your top buttons and un-pop your collar, please. You look like the nostalgic disco-king cashier from Bangalore I saw at the Hudson News in Penn Station, and I am not taking any of your guff today, mister. Houndstooth: You see yourself as down-to-earth and are usually disinterested in fashion, perhaps even disdainful. Your houndstooth scarf is the one article of clothing you have deemed “arty” and feel compelled to wear on a day trip to NYC to blend in with the locals. Please wear this print in neon colors and on hoodies if at all possible. Wearing a neon houndstooth hoodie would be best for those trying to avoid you. Floral: You are thrilled this print is back in vogue, as once again you have the opportunity to emulate your favorite tv sitcom actresses, that girl in Blossom and Julia Louis-Dreyfus. Drop that spade and brush the vermiculite out of your hair—the terrarium-planting can wait. You are carefree and should take some time to bathe in the sun and down a pitcher of Crystal Light as you thumb through your vintage copy of Mrs. Dalloway

115


GMT

-8

[LOS ANGELES]

PATTERN. POETRY

Monday get up Tuesday stay awake Wednesday eating lunch Thursday head home Friday visiting friends Saturday read in bed Sunday fall asleep. Monday awake Tuesday plan your day Wednesday take a break Thursday rush hour Friday cook some dinner Saturday TV shows Sunday go to bed. Monday alarm clock Tuesday start work Wednesday bring in food Thursday commute back Friday takeout Saturday make love Sunday kiss goodnight.

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

+8

[HONG KONG]

PATTERN. LIST

1. Man-made pebbles, Finnie Street sitting-out area

2. Natural pebbles? Tung Ping Chau

117


GMT

+1

[LONDON]

MISFORTUNE. VISUAL ART

Finale show of the Fringe Brighton Festival. Trapeze artists clinging to the top of the former floor.

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

-4

[NEW YORK]

MISFORTUNE. POETRY

a brisk wind sweeps in leaves fall to the ground and brown downy white snow fall

119


GMT

-8

[LOS ANGELES]

MISFORTUNE. LIST

VARIOUS TYPES OF COOKIES

Fortune

Misfortune

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

+8

[HONG KONG]

MISFORTUNE. PHOTOGRAPH

121


GMT

+1

[LONDON]

DIVORCE. POETRY

What’s mine is yours and yours is mine seems meaningless most of the time. Processions between the possessive tactile goods tacitly imply I’m yours and you’re mine. But before the need for things, thoughts, emotions intertwine take a step back assess the true worth of Me Mine I’m. You want what you cannot have to have what you do not want the lapse that brings together ultimately divides. No one knows the future or can inevitably go back in time. Einmal ist keinmal Eein mal ist kein mal I’m taking back what’s mine.

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

-4

[NEW YORK]

DIVORCE. LIST

WHEN YOU SHOULD DIVORCE YOURSELF FROM EMOTIONS: 1. Your roommates have finished the last ice cream sandwich at your expense. 2. You get horrible gastrointestinal afflictions as a result of consuming spoiled food at a party. 3. You are stuck in traffic behind a poor driver. 4. You are engaged in conversation with someone who is convinced you care deeply about his occupation. 5. Your mother keeps sending chain emails and/or slideshows of flowers, kittens, etc.

123


GMT

-8

[LOS ANGELES]

DIVORCE. MOBILE PHOTO

My parents’ cars post-divorce, father’s on left, mother’s on right, bought separately without the others’ knowledge.

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

+8

[HONG KONG]

DIVORCE. PHOTOGRAPH

離 婚 (lei fan): divorce Lady lawyer Hui Lai Yan on the side of a minibus for all your divorce law needs.

125


GMT

+1

[LONDON]

OVERHEAD. PHOTOGRAPH

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

-4

[NEW YORK]

OVERHEAD. MOBILE PHOTO

self-portrait with my stuff

127


GMT

-8

[LOS ANGELES]

OVERHEAD. VISUAL ART

PEN & IMAGE

05 [MAY 2011]


GMT

+8

[HONG KONG]

OVERHEAD. PHOTOGRAPH

Kite vs. Kite.

129


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