“In many people’s minds, the relationship between tattoos and gangsters is the same as the relationship between graffiti and vandalism. This is unbearable to creative graffiti artists!” said graffiti artist Jimmy, as he pointed out the difficulties this stereotype poses to graffiti artists trying to gain social recognition.
Graffiti artists used to use Taipei’s Ximending as a base for their creativity, but over the past two years, the trend has been to move to the city’s East District. Their impromptu creations can be seen everywhere from the walls of buildings and metal rolling shutters along the fourth and fifth sections of Zhongxiao E Rd to the fences of the Songshan Tobacco Factory and Taiwan Railways Administration’s Taipei Railway Workshop. The Taipei City Government has pledged to punish them heavily, but that has not stopped their ambition to express themselves.
Seven years ago, BOBO formed a graffiti group named 4CREW together with foreign graffiti artists. He is not even 30 years old and is already a master in this field in Taipei. “Every graffiti artist’s work and style are unique. The general public may not understand the elements in an artist’s work, like script, totems, and symbols, but we instantly know whose work it is when we see it.”
Apart from Ximending, the landmark of their creativity, the spread of graffiti artists is an attempt to gain recognition. This spread of their creativity has also added greater vitality to the cold concrete jungle.
“We are neither vandals nor anti-social,” according to BOBO, who claims that they would not touch clean and neat buildings or MRT stations. However, there are many abandoned apartments and dull riverbanks and power transformers. Such space without a soul “is where we paint freely.”
BOBO admits that most of the graffiti in Taipei has been left by graffiti artists wandering the world. “Many creators place their focus on action. They even pick highly-challenging locations so they can experience the original anti-establishment spirit of graffiti making.”
For professional graffiti artists, a 3m by 6m to 7m metal rolling shutter of a shop is a standard canvas. From abstract characters to brilliant totems, “the work can quickly be done in about an hour or two.” Some artists who prefer the technique of “bombing” love to climb up to a roof top to place their creations in high places beyond the general public’s reach. “Just like a guerrilla war, you spray paint in two colors in 10 or 20 minutes and then walk away. Since it is difficult to cover or clean such graffiti, you have a greater sense of achievement.”
In recent years, many stores around Ximending’s “movie street” have expressed their fondness for graffiti art, taking the initiative to pay graffiti artists to create freely on the walls of their stores. The creation in the stores and around the community has turned such graffiti art streets into urban artificial scenery. Since the area is now a walking district on holidays, it has become a popular scenic spot that attracts people who go there to take photos.(LIBERTY TIMES, TRANSLATED BY EDDY CHANG)
Pets are an inseparable part of people’s lives in the modern world. About 65 percent of US households have at least one pet. On a psychological level, pet companionship can bring better psychological wellbeing; on a biological level, our furry friends can boost human immunity. According to a report in Psychology Today, a review carried out by researchers from the UK’s University of Manchester found that the companionship of pets can result in better psychological wellbeing for people with mental health conditions. The diabetes research center of the University of Toronto’s Mount Sinai Hospital analyzed data from over 3 million people,
A: Hello, I’d like to book a table for two please. For 7 o’clock, if possible. B: Certainly, sir. Let me see if I can fit you in. I’m afraid we’re fully booked at that time, but we do have a space at 8pm. A: No problem, 8pm will be fine. B: Thank you. I‘ve reserved you a table for two for 8pm. Just to let you know, we operate a “bring your own” policy for wine, and corkage is NT$50 per bottle. A: OK. See you later on. A: 你好，我想要訂位，兩個人，方便的話晚上七點。 B: 好的，先生。讓我看看能不能幫您安排座位。不好意思，我們那段時間的訂位滿了，不過晚上八點還有空位。 A: 沒問題，晚上八點可以。 B: 謝謝您。我幫您預約晚上八點，兩個人的座位。另外，提醒您本餐廳關於「自行帶酒」的規定，每瓶酒酌收新台幣五十元開瓶費。 A: 好的。我們晚點見。 （Edward Jones,
Let’s dine out tonight (3/5) 今晚我們去餐廳吃飯吧（三） A: Hmm. . . I can’t decide what to order. I’m hesitating between a lamb rogan josh or a beef vindaloo. B: Well, let’s order both and share the dishes. We can also order the tandoori king prawns that I was just eyeing up. A: The prawn dish will perfectly complement the bottle of Australian Chardonnay that I’ve brought along. It’s a great wine, with notes of peaches and lemongrass. B: Cool! Let’s also order some butter naan bread and pilau rice for two. A: 嗯……我無法決定要點哪一道菜。我正在猶豫要點喀什米爾羊肉咖哩，還是辛辣香料牛肉咖哩。 B: 啊，那我們兩個都點，然後分著吃吧。我們還可以點一份坦都里香料烤明蝦，我剛剛一直在看這道菜。 A: 這道明蝦應該能完美搭配我帶來的這瓶澳洲夏多內白葡萄酒。這瓶酒真的很棒哦，帶有桃子和檸檬草的香氣。 B: 酷！那我們也點一些奶油烤餅，和兩人份的香料米飯吧。 （Edward Jones, Taipei Times／台北時報章厚明譯） WARNING: Excessive consumption of alcohol can damage
Literary circles have been celebrating the legacy of late writer Eileen Chang, who would have turned 100 on Wednesday next week. Born in Shanghai, the legendary writer shot to fame in her 20s, and continued to write after moving to Hong Kong, and then the US, in the 1950s. Chang is one of the greatest female Chinese writers, and her classic works include Love in a Fallen City, The Golden Cangue, and The Red Rose and the White Rose. Many of her novels, such as Lust, Caution, were adapted into films and TV drama series. Based on Chang’s novel Aloeswood Incense