These Silent T.V’s Make it Hard to Listen to Music

I would love to go to a bar with no TV or one that maybe turns it off when other events are happening. Even though they are on silent and have no subtitles, I cannot look away from the TV. Sitting at the bar there are five right in your face. No matter what way you turn your head it’s right there in your face. Do we need to see these programs 24-7 even when our friends are playing music five feet away. Gun shows, fox news, 1,000 ways to die. Great bar tv, right?


Tap Taps

I love tap taps, one of my favorite parts of Haitian art and expression. I have a post from when I went to the tap tap restaurant in Miami and pics from the tap tap they have in the back

Ayiti P'ap Peri

Tap tap – meaning “quick quick” in Creole – is the name given to privately owned vehicles that have been converted into public transport caravans. The buses run along set routes throughout the day, and though it is not necessary to pay, riders generally fork over five to ten gourdes for their services. Since most Haitians do not own a car Tap taps are the most frequent form of transportation for the population when one is travelling further than walking distance. They increase in physical size according to the length of their route to be more efficient and lucrative. Smaller editions are generally pickup tucks fitted with a cabin over the external bed, and the bigger, longer travelling vehicles are either school buses or oversized U-haul types.

What makes the buses special is their intricate and psychedelic deco. The paintings adorning each blend religious symbolism with personal interest and result…

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Moroccan Jews

These are great. My boyfriends dad is a originally a jew from Morocco and left because his family was basically forced to. He has never been back.

Africa is a Country (Old Site)

Aaron Elkaim is a documentary photographer based in Toronto. He studied Film and Cultural anthropology before deciding to pursue photography. With four other Canadian photographers, he founded the Boreal Collective. His photo-essay “Exodus,” which won second prize in the 2010 Viewbook Photostory documentary competition, explores the remains of the Jewish communities in Morocco. He documents personal and familial narratives, archival and architectural remains of Jewish communities in modern-day Morocco. The accompanying notes mention that the Jewish community was founded over two thousand years ago, prospered for centuries, and grew to occupy a proud place within Moroccan national identity.

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Caribbean plans regional approach to abolish gay laws

Repeating Islands

 Caribbean countries, faced with potential political and religious fall-out, plan to take a regional approach in scrapping laws against buggery and prostitution by 2015, according to a senior United Nations (UN) official, Denis Scott Chabrol reports in this article for The Demerara Waves.

Most of the former British colonies that are Caricom member-nations have been coming under increasing international pressure to abolish those laws that also include prohibiting cross-dressing.

Politicians remain wary of losing votes from, among others, the religious communities and other people who argue against erasing those laws for moral and ethical reasons.

UN Special Envoy on HIV/AIDS to the Caribbean, Dr. Edward Greene, however, notes that at least 20 percent of some Caribbean countries are gays, a cultural shift that must be considered.

Experts like Greene say those laws force vulnerable communities like commercial sex workers and Men who have Sex with Men (MSM) to…

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On eve of carnival, political crisis looms in Haiti

I feel revolution in the air. It’s been the year for getting up in arms about your government and the treatment of the people. Even though Martelly hasnt done anything like past presidents in Haiti, but there have been nbo changes in the post-earthquake situation since he has been president and there should be.

Repeating Islands

As Haiti’s carnival drums prepare to kick off in this weekend’s pre-Lenten celebrations, a different kind of rumbling has attracted the attention of the international community, Jacqueline Charles writes in The Bellingham Herald.

So concerned are Haiti’s foreign friends about looming political tensions that the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, Susan Rice, ended a four-day visit to the earthquake-ravaged nation by calling on its political leaders to stop the fighting.

“Haiti’s executive and legislative branches,” Rice said, “need to rise above their interests and work together in the spirit of compromise to overcome their common challenges.”

Rice led a 15-member delegation of the U.N. Security Council on a visit to Haiti this week. They left on Thursday after field trips to the police academy, a tent city, cholera treatment facility and new industrial park in the north. They also met with President Michel Martelly, Prime Minister Garry Conille…

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Obeah Opera: Witchcraft opera wields frightening power

I would love to see this.

Repeating Islands

Trish Crawford reviews a new opera for Toronto.com.
Obeah is an ancient witchcraft practised in the Caribbean, which has the power to frighten even today.

When director ahdri zhina mandiela handed out promotional flyers for Obeah Opera on the streets of Toronto, there were people who shrank back in fear and refused to take the material.

“The content, the subject, is still taboo,” she says. “For centuries it has been, ‘don’t talk about it.’ Some people will be afraid to come.”

The fear is rooted in history — a history exposed by Obeah Opera, which is about black slaves being caught up in the Salem witch trials due to their association with the practice of Obeah.

Mandiela praised creator Nicole Brook for challenging audiences — and the other actors and theatre staff — saying the subject matter involved people looking into their past “and their baggage.”

Multi-tasker Brook wrote the…

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