I'm Kristen and I'm living in Crawley, Sussex (hoping to return to my beloved Brighton 'n' Hove when my ME/CFS allows). I drink a lot of tea, ride a lot of buses, go in a lot of charity shops, draw, sew and knit (and attempt to crochet), take a lot of photos, spend a lot of time sleeping, read a lot of history books and follow Jesus Christ. <3
Email: busstopgirl (at) googlemail (dot) com
Bath Boy, aka Berlin-based David O'Mer, performs with aerial silks/straps in and over a bath full of water, splashing the front rows as he does. He's a fine figure of a man - a fine figure of a man dripping wet - and it's VERY sexy. Well, it does it for me anyway - and it's all more sexy because he keeps his jeans on throughout. So it's OK for a single, straight, red-blooded, Christian gal to get all flustered about, I reckon. ;)
"A group of 12 Christians who have spent the week making tea for activists at the Camp for Climate Action today prayed outside the Kingsnorth power plant as part of the "Orange Action"... Praying for forgiveness for all the damage the plant has created during its life-time, and singing simple chants, they were determined to show that Christians are waking up to the need for action to prevent Catastrophic Climate Change."
"E.ON’s replica of the Kingsnorth coal-fired power station has been occupied by one inch tall climate change campaigners. The drama unfolded at the Legoland park in Windsor – sponsored by E.ON – where the Lego Kingsnorth is given pride of place next to Big Ben and Canary Wharf... Lego police are in attendance at the foot of the tower, along with a Lego police helicopter. Neither the campaigners nor the police would comment, because they’re made of Lego and therefore can’t talk."
If you're at home all day, as I am, it's easy to get sucked into the black hole of daytime telly. Most of it is dire, but you do stumble across surprise gems. KNTV Philosophy is a schools programme shown on Channel Four - I imagine it's aimed at GCSE students, but it's perfect for anyone who needs a basic introduction to the best-known philosophers. And it's a hoot.
"KNTV is presented by virtual hosts Kierky and Nietzsche, two teenage science-obsessed rock thrash musicians from the fictitious communist country of Slabovia. They have built a TV studio in an abandoned secret government research facility, and from here they broadcast their own pirate show of science trivia to the world."
Each episode they examine the life and work of a famous philosopher, demonstrating their theories via clips from the Slabovian version of You've Been Framed. The best bit is when K and N perform the song they have written to help you remember the facts. Take a look at these videos for their songs about Plato, Adam Smith, Marx, Einstein and Freud, and check out the Slabovia TV channel on YouTube ("Watch. Enjoy. Or Be Punished!").
I can't get enough, so I've gone the whole hog and changed nationality. I am now a full citizen of The People's Republic of Slabovia. In the presence of the mighty Slabovian emblem – The Sickle and Pickle – I have sworn allegiance to General Schmerdiakov and adopted a new name - Ellena Fyodorova - and an intense fascination with the potato.
Oxfam are calling on knitters everywhere to turn their knitting needles into poverty fighting needles by creating a 9-inch square for their giant baby blanket - a 'visual petition' they're handing in to world leaders in September 2008, demanding that they honour their promises to make sure mums in poor countries get the maternal health care they need. They're aiming for 250,000 patches - one for every mum who should have survived pregnancy in the last six months.
"For every mum, the day her child is born should be the happiest of her life. Yet, in the world's poorest countries, many mums don't survive to look after their babies. In the next minute, lack of access to health care will claim the life of another mum. In a year, half a million mums die because of poorly equipped hospitals, or because they can't afford to pay health care fees. World leaders have promised to end this travesty by providing enough aid to deliver the medical services needed, but as things stand they're falling well short."
Enter your details on Oxfam's website, and they'll email you a copy of their foolproof knitting guide, which you can download to find out how to take part. After the giant blanket has been presented, it will be dismantled into smaller blankets and sold in Oxfam shops and at festivals. All money raised will go towards Oxfam's work to fight poverty, such as urgently needed midwife training in Yemen.
Get your squares to Oxfam's Leeds office by 31 August 2008. Check out the squares they've received so far on Flickr.
What's going on in China away from the fireworks, dancing and flag-waving? Please take a minute or two to watch this video, where the BBC's John Simpson examines how China is handling dissent, and whether the country's attitude to personal freedom is changing.
July/August 2008 issue of Crafts magazine (c) The Crafts Council
The latest issue of Crafts magazine has a lovely piece of Su Blackwell artwork (Wild Flowers, 2007) on the cover. I first saw her work in the V&A Museum Shop. It's gorgeous stuff - delicate "book-cut sculptures" of mindboggling intricacy. She takes a scalpel to a secondhand book and creates other worlds within its pages.
Alice - A Mad Tea Party (c) Su Blackwell, 2006
As with Rob Ryan's papercuts, you have to wonder - what happens if you sneeze while you're cutting a tricky bit? There's a great interview with Su, with lots of great images of her work, on the My Love For You blog. She has an exhibition at Long and Ryle in London from November 26th - December 20th, 2008.