Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Sunset over the Golden Horn

Sunset with, fittingly, a mosque minaret and a modern light fixture (unless you chose to see the resemblance to the monsters in War of The Worlds) with the seagulls massing overhead (or The Birds, if you prefer to see that movie)
Taken from the North side of the bridge linking the two sides of the Golden Horn, the river that divides the European side of Istanbul in two *(Istanbul is further divided into Europe and Asia by the Bosporus)
(Dedicated to Mutlu, that gentlest of geniuses)

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Yın Yang Converted

A unique pattern on a Ming (or was it earlier?) dynasty pottery at Topkapi Palace, Istanbul

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Istanbul, Crossroads between east and west

This Turkish girl is wearing a half-length jean jacket, cut with a high midriff. Since I often proofread for people involved with Korean traditional clothing, I couldn't help but notice the striking similarity of this style with Koreas 'hanbok' jackets, which are also cut with a high midriff.

Stuffed Bell Pepper (Paprika)

A Turkish chef greets customers at a 'See Your Food' type cafeteria establishment on Istiklal Street, in the Manhattanesque Taxmin Square district of Istanbul. These bell peppers are stuffed with meat and rice, and topped with cheese and tomato....they taste as good as they look; but eating in a cafeteria is by no means cheap....a typical meal here costs about 7 euros, or about 10 dollars.

Monday, July 14, 2008

an angel, not sure which one, from the left side of the altar inside of the Greek Ortho church, which was full of images of St. Theodisius

the gate of a Greek Orthodox church near my apartment in Istanbul - loaded with symbols (does anyone know what the triangle is?)- I believe the swastika is the doing of 'turkmen aryan' skinheads - that is, not aryans per se, but turkish borrowing from Hitler's pure race ideology. They may have chosen this church to deface because the Greeks, their hated enemies historically, are actually the same bunch of people, give or take a few empires...probably causes their skin-tight heads to ache a little bit.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Baba Joe, AKA Banana Joe

This Classic Trash Film poster decorates the room I now rent in Istanbul. Someday I will have to obtain this film just to see what sort of Neocolonial Exploits Banana Joe gets up to (by the way, those of you who have seen the way bananas grow on a 'branch', and who have attempted to lift one of these branches, probably realize that the load of bananas depicted is not only too heavy (about 100 kilos) but would never balance (three stems in evidence) on one shoulder, no matter how wide.

Friday, July 11, 2008

I'm not the only one.....

Yes, its a bottle of fermented carrot juice. And you thought I was strange.....

parade of the Ottomans

A random parade on Istiklal street in Istanbul, is headed up by some local 'boys' dressed in some of the traditional Cashew-fruit hat, and carrying the curvy scimitar that we always associate with arabs, but which actually belong more to the period after the middle ages...

This guy has got a bit of a beer belly but is a great example of the helmet with the neck covered by chain mail *(as is the rest of the corpulescense)
From the rear a good example of the tiny tiny shield and bow, which apparently was an adaptation of the powerful mongol bows, but just before gunpowder made the whole outfit rather redundant. So in between the period that knights roamed the earth and the appearance of armorless musketmen, these guys were wreaking havoc in the east (and they stopped at the gates of Vienna, thus changing the history of the West forever). This was also about the time of the French Rout in Agincourt, where the supremacy of the English longbow and of guerilla strategy over the might of the horseman was proved once and for all- that is, until the Nazi tanks cut down the Polish cavalry in 1939.