Outdoors, Random and Weird Phone Shots

Random and Weird Phone Shots -Statements in the City

Today I want to share with you two phone camera shots I took the other day in Manchester City Centre. Both make a clear statement.

fuck trump fuck brexit

This is on the wall on Oldham Street, Manchester. Oldham Street is part of Northern Quarter, a centre of alternative culture, independent shops and suchlike. (Come to think of it, this blogs needs some pics of that area!)

Brexit and Trump seem to get mentioned together a lot. Imagine one day in the future someone who is a baby now, or not born yet, asking you: “What were they, some comedy duo?”

I wish. The difference is, The Donald won’t be in charge for more than 8 years but Brexit is final.

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Window of a Diesel shop on Deansgate says Make Love Not Walls.

This politics thing is getting a bit tiring, isn’t it.

Miscellaneous

We Are Grounders

Not long ago a I made a post citing dialogue from one of my favourite TV shows, Vikings, and how it related to real life stuff. I never expected to do something like that again–and on the same topic!

So, I’ve been watching The 100.

Set 97 years after a nuclear war has destroyed civilization, when a spaceship housing humanity’s lone survivors sends 100 juvenile delinquents back to Earth in hopes of possibly re-populating the planet. –IMDb

I admit, after the first couple of episodes, I had a feeling as if I was in one of those YA dystopian series that are in vogue now, but this is not a bad thing. (In fact, the TV show is actually based on books by Kass Morgan.) I loved Divergent. And well, why not? YA has always been a good age group to write for and dystopia–have you read the news lately? Though The 100 is post-apocalyptic rather than dystopian. What I like about this series is how the characters find themselves in situation where they have to make very difficult decisions. Do we kill 100 people to save 1000? Someone like Captain Picard would refuse to even answer that but here, it’s sure, let’s pull a trigger. And while the hundred from whom the show’s title is derived are all in their teens, there are plenty of older characters to root for.

Now to my quote. As it happens, the humans on the spaceship, The Ark, were not the only survivors of the nuclear war; there are people living on the ground, who are soon referred to as Grounders. The Grounders nickname those from the Ark the Sky People. Naturally, tensions rise between the two groups, culminating in a big battle. This is said by one of the main characters, Bellamy (played by Bob Morley), in Season 1, Episode 12 – We Are The Grounders Part 1.

Twilight’s Last Gleaming

Bellamy’s full speech:

This is our home now. We built this from nothing with our bare hands! Our dead are buried behind that wall, in this ground. Our ground! The Grounders think they can take that away? They think that because we came from the sky we don’t belong here! But they have yet to realize one very important fact. We are on the ground now. And that means WE are Grounders!

I’m speaking as an EU citizen living in UK in this crazy post-Brexit time. The government have refused to guarantee us any rights, instead they are using us as bargaining chips in the Brexit negotiations. We will give you rights, as long as the other EU countries give rights to UK citizens living there. Because that’s how it works. UK decides to leave EU and then demands rights for their citizens that live in there. Have your cake and eat it, anyone? I am aware that some nations think themselves superior to others but surely there is a limit. But I digress.

Of course, probably not many of us have built anything here with our bare hands, but we have built our lives. You know, got married, had kids, bought houses, got university degrees, got promotions at work. And yes, buried some dear ones too. We are here now, we are the residents! (Gosh, how I hate the word immigrant.) At least the House of Lords is arguing for our rights, let’s see whether it’ll do anything good.

 

Indoors

A Good Match

In this week’s photo challenge post, Ben posts a photograph of a donut, a cup of coffee and a glass of sparkling water, but tells us not to limit ourselves to edible stuff–but this is exactly what I’m going to do, even though I don’t normally blog about food or post pictures of food.

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The colours are a good match too

Let me introduce you to my favourite breakfast. Bacon sandwich + a cup of black coffee = heaven. For me bacon sandwich is the second best thing in the world (the first is pizza). But there is more to this shot.

We hear of things typically British and we hear of things typically Continental European. Nothing more essentially British than a bacon sandwich, I’m sure you agree. On the other hand, coffee is continental, whereas the Brits like their tea.

Best of both worlds then. Imagine if referendums never existed, we could have breakfast instead of Brexit. Sigh.

Speaking of which…

poirot-hastings

A very Belgian private detective with his very British sidekick.

A Good Match

Miscellaneous

Spaniards in UK, post Brexit feels (Edge of Humanity Magazine)

via Spaniards Living In UK – Their Accomplishments, Experiences & Hope After Brexit | Edge of Humanity Magazine

In the aftermath of the EU referendum, many UK-based Europeans have been left with feelings of insecurity and anxiety about what the future might hold for them and their families.

This project offers a snapshot of their experiences, capturing their thoughts and emotions following this momentous and potentially life-changing political decision.

“On the day of the referendum, I [Simon] was working at a theatre workshop in London with people from all over the world. We were all devastated. Then out came the stories in the press about people telling European waiters to go home. It was disgraceful.

Some people say that the Leave vote was a vote of punishment against Cameron and the Tories, but I think the voters are only punishing themselves. I see no positives at all in this situation. Things seem to have calmed down but you can already see some repercussions.”

“I [Maria] experienced a lot of sadness and anxiety at the beginning. It [Brexit] made me question whether this was really the place for me in the long term. I felt left out at a time when I was working hard to fit in and adapt to British culture.

However, I have had a lot of support from some sectors of society, like work colleagues and my own students. This has made me feel a bit better. I am not sure where I will end up, I’m young and there’s a whole world out there to explore.”

“It was sad to see how most of the Leave campaign was focused on immigration, blaming people like us for some of the biggest problems of this country.
After the referendum we experienced a mixture of emotions – fear, frustration, anger, a strong feeling of being unwanted.
We felt it was very irresponsible of politicians to pit one section of the population against another for their own interests, not valuing foreign workers like us for the contribution we make to the development of this country.
We are worried that this could greatly affect the peaceful coexistence between nationalities in this diverse and multicultural country. ”

“I believe in a world without borders and think this [Brexit] is a step backwards from that.
I am not concerned about my situation as a EU National in the UK, perhaps because I have been here for longer than the London Eye and I am both practical and resourceful, or it could be that I am still a bit in denial, I wouldn’t know.
As Murakami says in one of my favorite books, sometimes “You have to wait until tomorrow to find out what tomorrow will bring.”

Me: At least I’m not on my own. Even though I haven’t got a PhD, Master’s degree, nor do I run my own business.

eu-til-i-die

Miscellaneous

Us

One of the TV shows I have enjoyed lately is Vikings. It was a bit of dialogue in  season 4.02, episode 7 that inspired me to write this blog post. The episode title is The Great Army.

The dialogue is between Rollo, a brother of Ragnar (the main character) and Floki, a boat builder and Ragnar’s close friend. To give a bit of a background if you haven’t seen it: Rollo betrayed Ragnar and sided against his own people in a battle between the Vikings and the Franks. The Franks offered him a deal: help us defeat Ragnar and we give you some lands and the hand of our princess in marriage. Having always been a bit jealous of Ragnar, he accepted. However, years later, still feeling like a Viking, he joined Ragnar’s son Bjorn on his voyage to raid in the West Mediterranean sea.

The exchange happened on their way back north, as Rollo parted ways with them upon reaching Frankia.

vikings-rollo-speech

What is “us” is changing.

 

I thought it was strangely relevant, you know, with all this talk of immigration on both sides of the Atlantic.

Floki on the left, Rollo on the right.

Have a great week.

 

Outdoors

New Horizon

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I love the title of this challenge. It’s full of positivity. New Horizons is also a name of the NASA probe to Pluto. I’ve not managed to get a shot of any space probe yet, but I did manage to get a shot of a hot air balloon (sort of)–it’s that tiny red dot on the above photo. Speaking of hot air balloons, once I watched some movie with a hot air balloon when I was a kid and I liked it so much that when it crashed at the end, I started crying and my mum, who wasn’t watching it, ran to the living room, worried, asking what happened, why was I crying and when I told her, she said, don’t worry, they will fix the balloon and it will fly again! I remember she then went to the kitchen, where, I imagine, burst into massive laughter, though this couldn’t be confirmed; she has no recollection of this incident. (I don’t remember how the movie ended.)

I don’t know what’s on the horizon. On one hand, I can’t wait for 2017, on the other, I’m scared that after 13 (well, 14 by then) years of living in UK, some politicians will decide that I have to go. These guys have expressed it much better than me. But it also proves that you must not under any circumstances take anything for granted. My favourite saying is shit happens and now that shit happened, let’s see how we can deal with it. (Like, google “moving to Germany” for starters.)

The picture was taken in Arnside, Cumbria.

New Horizon

Miscellaneous

In The Style Of

Snippets from current events (with a dash of pop culture)

Brexit conversation

UK: We want to leave the EU!

EU: Bye.

You say Brexit, I say going full retard.

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The presidential candidates as characters on Game of Thrones/A Song of Ice and Fire

Hillary Clinton: And now it begins.

Donald Trump: No, now it ends.

A frantic attempt at sub-space communication

starfleet-message

An advert in national paper

paper-advert-larger

Draco Malfoy and Pansy Parkinson waiting for the results on election night

dracopansy-copy
From Time magazine issue November 21, photograph by Dina Litovsky

So nice of him to lend her his jacket so that she’s not cold. He’s a good boy at heart.

A horror story I sent to my brother on Halloween night

horror-is-real

But hey, don’t despair, humanity. In times like these, always remember

dont-panic

And keep a towel ready. Just in case.

Like Hagrid said at the end of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

It had ter happen. Well, now it has, an’ we’ll jus’ have ter get on with it. We’ll fight.

Here’s one of my November pictures

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And a quote from the peerless Tyrion Lannister which may or may not be relevant

tyrion-wall

 

In The Style Of

Outdoors

Local

Manchester Old Cheetham Hill police station

I was standing on the street next to mine, photographing this, when a woman approached me and asked me what it was that I was taking a picture of.

“Old Cheetham Hill police station,” I said. Cheetham Hill is this area of Manchester.

The woman was pleasantly surprised and told me she was interested in local old buildings and had been trying to find out for years what this gateway was part of. There was no information on it anywhere.

I told her the truth, that I found it only thanks to Pokemon Go.

In fact, I never even noticed the gateway before, even though I have passed by it regularly for at least a decade. It was when I was catching Pokemon in the summer that I looked at it for the first time–it was a Pokestop. So we chatted a bit, I explained to her how the game worked and then we parted.

I haven’t been able to find out almost anything on the net about this old police station and now I really have to give it to those folks at Nintendo.

This obviously refers to “local” as in where I live, not where I’m from. My home town (if that is the right word, as in the place I was born and bred) is Bratislava. But this makes me think, what is local?

Some Tory politician or other (I’m not making the effort into looking up her name) said at a recent party conference, that firms should be hiring British people instead of immigrants. Because immigrants… well, immigrants. You know, immigrants. I’ve seen a comment on Facebook post that linked to that news article, which agreed with this politician and that it yes, the firms should be recruiting local people in the first place. What is “local people”?

I have been living in Manchester for 13 years, in the same area for  almost 12, have been renting from the same estate agency for 11 years and been living in the same flat for 6. But immigrants.

It will take me a very long time to get over being bitter about Brexit.

 

Local