Joup’s Friday Album – Fourth Edition – Manic Street Preachers ‘The Holy Bible’

manix460I feel I’d be remiss in my responsibilities as Cultural Correspondent for the Divided Queendom if I didn’t represent some of the misunderstood (or externally ignored) classics this country has produced. I’m at a loss to think of too many that aren’t globally renowned on at least a cult level, but there is one that’s never far from my mind as deserving of greater recognition across the Atlantic.

Technology: Create your Own Style Online with help from Chicago Stores: Do You Reppio?

Lisa Sikorski chats up Annie Dean of Reppio (Joe Grez)

Lisa Sikorski chats up Annie Dean of Reppio (Joe Grez)

I will admit that just the word “vintage” conjures up memories of poorly organized antique shops and mysterious pungent odors. I love the thought of vintage, but most shops I have ventured into leave me wanting to run for the hills. However, a new website called Reppio.com is out to help guide true lovers of  all styles to the best and brightest privately owned shops in Chicago neighborhoods. “It’s all about helping small businesses,” states Reppio Rep Annie Dean. “A lot of people who come to the city don’t know where to begin and might end up dismissing the charm of a neighborhood like Wicker Park just because they wandered into a store that’s wrong for them and their style.” Reppio is online and ready to help you find the designers, shops, and items that will suit your style whether you’re shabby chic or trendy urban.

Capturing a Traditional Lanna Buddhist Wedding in Thailand

Doa, the bride of our traditional Lanna Buddhist wedding. (Joe Grez/Sesame)

Doa, the bride of our traditional Lanna Buddhist wedding. (Joe Grez/Sesame)

Why Coachella 2013 and YouTube got it Right

Coachella and YouTube team up to bring music to the world. (Courtesy of Coachella Music + Arts Festival)

Coachella and YouTube team up to bring music to the world. (Courtesy of Coachella Music + Arts Festival)

“Wow, just Wow.” I keep telling myself as I watch the French band Phoenix performing live at the Coachella Music Festival on a channel created specific to stream the entire weekend. As a matter of fact, Coachella worked with YouTube creating THREE channels! Streaming live performance of nearly 75 artist through 3 days. Such acts include the aforementioned Phoenix, Blur, Teagan and Sara, Ginderman, Spiritulaized, Vampire Weekend, Franz Ferdinand, Red Hot Chilli Peppers and the first performance in some years of The Postal Service.

Relationships Matter – Introspection

Self introspection has a gradient area. (Joe Grez/Joup)

Self introspection has a gradient area (Joe Grez/Joup)

Introspection used to be a word that only referred to people. It is now used in software development to describe a capability of some object-oriented programming languages to determine the type of an object at runtime; this ability is called ‘type introspection’. As I am writing about people I have used ‘self-introspection’ to describe our examination of our own behaviour, drivers and motivations and ‘other-introspection’ to describe the same examination of other people which is more commonly known as a form of empathy.

Self-introspection is something we should all do regularly. Unfortunately only the emotionally, intellectually and morally courageous amongst us actually do. Most of us are intellectual, emotional and moral cowards. Having said that all of us are capable of developing intellectual, emotional and moral courage; it just takes a desire to do so and a willingness to bear the discomfort of bad feelings in order to acknowledge and accept them as opposed to ignoring and suppressing them.

Relationships Matter – Transition

 

Like a sunrise, all relationships transitions are unique. (Joe Grez/Sesame)

Like a sunrise, all relationships transitions are unique. (Joe Grez/Sesame)

1. Ending

Transition begins with letting go of something. William Bridges believes that too often we forget this axiom, believing that the transition begins with the third stage—New Beginnings. What may be most disconcerting is that endings are being thrust upon us as a result of circumstances beyond our control such as a crisis. Many of us find ourselves increasingly anxious because of our apparent lack of control over circumstances. Acknowledging reality, even if it seems harsh, is the only way to gain control over the circumstances. During the Ending stage, we must consciously identify what is ending and then choose to let go.

Why Such a Fascination for Sky Lanterns (Khom Loi)?

Thais releasing a Khom Loi

Thais releasing a Khom Loi (Joe Grez/Sesame)

Pai, Thailand – I have a dilemma. It has to do with the Chinese and Thai traditions of releasing hot air rice paper lanterns (Kongming [Chinese], Khom Loi [Thai]) into the night sky. Happens quite often in the north of the country now, with numerous lanterns coloring the black, faint white polka doted sky with moving golden orange pixels of various sizes. The first site of it is rather striking and as more people release lanterns into the sky, the night becomes that much more entrancing. So what’s my problem with this?

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