americans*

K-HOLE

I have, for some time, believed that the chefs doing the most interesting work in America — chefs who are, in fact, redefining what “American food” means — are Korean. When I go out for dinner with non-Korean chef friends, all they want these days, is Korean food. They get excited by the deep, tangy, spicy funk of kimchee, thrilled by the little plates of pickles and snacks that accompany the main courses, intrigued by what is to them, often a whole new spectrum of flavors. Date night with my wife? Korean Barbecue. And God help me, among a very small circle of friends — all of them sworn to secrecy — and on all of whom I possess horrifying and incriminating photographic evidence that ensures their eternal silence — I have, after much soju, actually gone to Korean karaoke.

ONLY Korean, by the way. What makes it so special — other than the guaranteed anonymity, are the accompanying videos. The Sex Pistols’ “ANARCHY IN THE UK” (my wife’s regular show stopper), plays along with images of two honeymooning Koreans in a rowboat on Lake Geneva. Iggy and the Stooges’ “I WANNA BE YOUR DOG” (my big finisher), doesn’t even have a dog in its video: two teenagers, holding hands at the mall.

So it was a no-brainer that as soon as I could, I’d go back to South Korea and do what Koreans do so well: eat lots of great food, drink lots and lots of beer and soju and other alcoholic beverages — and then do silly shit that you would never do if you weren’t with Koreans.

This premier episode is distinguished by two aspects, one technical and one stylistic.

We had, been looking for years, for an excuse to tell a story backwards — in reverse chronological order. To start at the end — and work back relentlessly, to the beginning. The original cut even opened with end credits — but this was deemed suicidal. People would, of course, tune in and think they’d already missed the damn thing. But we did, indeed tell the thing in exact reverse chronological order, the film “MEMENTO” being an inspiration in this regard. And also cause we just like doing stuff like this. We begin with me, hideously hung over,trying to recreate the wreckage of the last night from memory — and continue through an epic bar crawl — and onwards. Unlike my usual shows, I grow progressively more sober as the show goes on.

The other interesting feature is the camera equipment. I’ve never seen anything like what DP’s Todd Liebler and Zach Zamboni showed up with this time around: they didn’t even look like cameras! Two garden hose looking thingies, the two of them tethered to some unfortunate camera assistant’s monitor festooned backpack rig — all of that hard wired into house current. On one hand, the cameras themselves could move like striking cobras — under, over and around like never before. On the other, the two shooters looked like they were dancing with Dr. Octopus.

A MAJOR, MAJOR source of inspiration — who we referenced (ripped off directly) was the video for QUEENS OF THE STONE AGE’s “Smooth Sailing”. As if we haven’t benefited enough from the good works of Mr. Josh Homme and his merry band, we first, used the video as inspiration — and then, while figuring out how to get some music that sounded like “Smooth Sailing” we just said “Screw It, lets call Josh and see if we can use the song.”
Once again, he delivered for us. Josh? I hope you like the show. Consider it an “homage”.

And those of you who find anything to love in this seriously bent episode, please be sure to check out the original video (it’s truly great — and much more disturbing) and buy the record!

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HALSEY VIDEO MASTERLIST

Here is an easy to use masterlist of all of Halsey’s videos so far. All videos are on youtube, and most, if not all, are HD. This masterlist includes:
Music Videos (e.g. Ghost, Hurricane)
Live Performances (e.g. American Youth Tour - each link will send you to a playlist of every video from each show)
Acoustic Performances (e.g. 1 Mic 1 Take version of Ghost, Cover of Katy Perry’s Birthday)
Fan Encounters
Interviews (e.g. VEVO DSCVR and VEVO Ask:Reply)
Will be updated frequently.
Can also be split into subsections if you click on whatever heading you want!

Enjoy!

Judge whose family survived Armenian genocide: ‘They never smiled’

Pope Francis set off a diplomatic furor recently when he said what historians and most diplomats have been saying for almost a century now:

That Turkey participated in the first genocide of the 20th century by slaughtering 1.5 million Armenians in 1915.

Americans forget too easily. We allow our memories to be washed, from generation to generation, in the interests of commerce. Yet the dead can’t be coerced by capitalism.

Der-Yeghiayan’s grandfather, who had been living in the U.S. working in a steel plant, went back in 1919 to find those who were left.

“He never smiled,” said the judge. “As a boy, late at night, I would hear him from the other room, on his knees, praying for all their souls. But I never saw him smile once. My grandmother never smiled. All the Armenian people of the time, they lived, they survived, they raised families.

"But they never smiled. Ever.”

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The 1 Inch Buck and Ball Gatling Gun,

Although the US Army used the Gatling gun sparingly during the American Civil War, it was after the Civil War that officers began to warm up to the new “proto” machine gun.  The later half of the 1860′s saw the first large scale purchases of gatling guns and similar devices by the military.  One of the more interesting designs was the 1 inch gatling gun designed by Cooper Firearms Company of Philadelphia.  More like a cannon, the gun fired a 1 inch caliber bullet at a rate of 80-100 rounds per minute.  While having a large caliber gun with such firepower may seem deadly, it was the buck and ball cartridge that most impressed ordnance officials.  The buck and ball cartridge came in three variants.  The first had a regular 1 inch caliber bullet with six .57 caliber balls loaded behind it.  The second was a canister round consisting of 21 lead balls of .41 caliber each.  The third was loaded with 18 cylindrical slugs.

Essentially what Cooper Firearms Company had created was a hand cranked rapid fire shotgun.  In fact when the weapon was first tested in 1866, it was compared to the 24 pounder howitzer firing canister shot.  The gun was also demonstrated to President Grant himself, who believed the weapon would be excellent for close up defense against enemy assaults involving large masses of men.  The US Army adopted the 1 Inch Gatling in 1867, with 50 being produced by Colt in that year.  Despite the advantages the Gatling had to offer, few saw any combat with American forces until the Spanish American War.  

american movie filming in arab/muslim country: *Athan literally being called at all times of the day, nonstop*

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Strange Fruit: Uncelebrated Narratives from Black History (2015) 

Strange Fruit, Volume I is a collection of stories from African American history that exemplifies success in the face of great adversity. This unique graphic anthology offers historical and cultural commentary on nine uncelebrated heroes whose stories are not often found in history books. 

Among the stories included are: Henry “Box” Brown, who escaped from slavery by mailing himself to Philadelphia; Alexander Crummel and the Noyes Academy, the first integrated school in America, established in the 1830s; Marshall “Major” Taylor, a.k.a. the Black Cyclone, the first black champion in any sport; and Bass Reeves, the most successful lawman in the Old West. 

Written and illustrated by Joel Christian Gill, the diverse art beautifully captures the spirit of each remarkable individual and opens a window into an important part of American history.

North American Starbucks are closing for the night because their systems are down but if you happen to catch one that’s still open the drinks are free 😎