Wednesday, October 08, 2008

THIS JUST IN! Re: Tuesday Challenge

When we awoke we found this tied to a rock and thrown through our window!

Hello folks

Firstly an Apology - I'm sorry that Tuesday Challenge has been off the radar for a while!Now an explanation - There has been an admin issue which popped up between myself and the server hosting company. Sadly, instead of talking to me about it and trying to sort out the problem, they just deleted the site from the server instead! This has made it a little harder to bring back to life and I've also been away on business which hasn't helped.BUT, We do hope to have Tuesday Challenge back up and running, maybe with a change to the theme system what I'd been considering for a while and possibly with a new look ( although don't hold me to that).But it WILL BE BACK, soon, ish!

Meanwhile, thank you to those that visit regularly and I hope you'll rejoin us again!

Chris / Bambography(50% of the Tuesday Challenge team)

All of this can only mean one thing. They've been drinking, were arrested in Malibu California for operating a motor vehicle whilst intoxicated, cell phone video recorded and making racist and anti-Semitic rants, and are now in Rehab but look forward to restarting Tuesday Challenge once they've dried out!

How do we know this? It is what happens to us when WE disappear for a while. Now we have to try to rehire 2 lap dancers for the Bretton Woods Photo Meme Summit and Yard Sale.

Monday, October 06, 2008

Mr. Steve Barru: Our Man in China!

We have always enjoyed Steve Barru's photos of China when submitted to the Photo Memes but we knew nothing about him. He doesn't do self portraits, doesn't talk about himself much on his photoblog, it's nearly wordless (As so many SHOULD be).

When we inquired about a possible visit and tour of the Orients he pulled the oldest trick in the book AND USED OUR SECRET CODE INDICATING THE HE KNEW OUR REAL IDENTITIES AS THE HEADS OF THE BILL AND MELINDA GATES CHARITABLE FOUNDATION! Sneaky bugger. He maintains it was coincidence.

So, without further ado...

Who are you and why are you doing this to us?

I'm a guy. Not a boy or a woman or a man or a pit bull. I don't wear lipstick, except maybe at Halloween. I came to China in 1987 to study Chinese and have been here ever since. People often ask me why anyone in his right mind would stay in a place like this for so many years. It's a good question, the answer to which is embedded within the question (hint: in his right mind).

First, I studied Chinese, then I became a part time English teacher in order to have time to study some more. These days I am back to being an English teacher again. In between, I started and ran a consulting company which tried to help non-Chinese figure out things about China, ran an international chamber of commerce, was on the board of an international school, worked for some architects.

While I have lived comfortably here, it is safe to say none of these endeavors has made me well off or even close to it. I am teflon coated when it comes to money. Well, what is one with such a resume to do? In my case, I have set my sights on being a professional interviewee when I grow up (which is going to be no time soon). And, thus, here I am.

Do you know Kerrin? (Don't tell us who else you know, if you catch our drift)

I most certainly do not know Kerrin. Should I? Do you? I don't know Jon Stewart either, but I still think he is very funny.

What are you wearing?

Almost nothing. Sort of puke green boxers and a big black tee shirt (no text, pictures or message of any kind), which does a less than successful job of concealing my even bigger mid section.

Where else can we see your photos? Do you have any side projects?

You can see my photos on my website ( and that's about it. Please visit. Please. Did I remind you to please visit my website...?

What other hobbies do you enjoy or enjoy inflicting upon others?

I like building plastic models of WWII weapons and equipment. A Chinese friend of mine recently expressed dismay that a going on 60 year old adult would enjoy doing such a thing. If you share his dismay, all I can do is refer you back to my remark about growing up in the first section of this interview.

After many years in China, laughing and/or weeping at the Commies and their despicable Party has also become something of a pastime. Given a chance, I will hold forth on almost any topic, whether I know anything or not. I'm not sure people who know me would refer to this as a hobby.

What equipment do or have you used? Are there any manufacturers you'd like to praise or bad mouth here?

I've been using Nikon cameras since day one. In fact I still have my first real camera, a Nikon F which I bought in 1968. I'm using a Nikon D200 these days with a Sigma 18-200mm lens, no stabilization. The Sigma was less than half the price of the Nikon 18-200 and I have no regrets that I saved the money. It's a terrific lens attached to a great camera.

Right now I'm waiting for Nikon to bring a mid range full sensor camera to market and go head to head with the Canon 5D. The D3 is too expensive and too heavy for an old fart like me.

What is the best photo that you missed?

When I first came to China I took thousands of photos, on film in those days. And then several years went by during which I took next to no pictures. Hard to say which of the missed shots would have been the best one, but I certainly regret my stupidity for putting the camera down.

Tell us your worst habit.

Never do today what can be put off until tomorrow. Need I say more?

Have you ever done anything heroic? (i.e. solved crimes, saved someone from a burning building or untied them from railroad tracks, fought injustice, donated organs) If not, why not? If so, please include press clippings.

I campaigned for Eugene McCarthy in Wisconsin in 1968. Later I was tear gassed during Viet Nam demonstrations in Washington DC. Does any of this count?

If you weren't doing what you do now, what else WOULD you be doing? Photographer doesn't count.

These days I am an English teacher. As gigs go, this is not a bad one - low stress, a reasonable amount of free time and some money on top of that. What would I do if I could? Travel to all of the places I want to go but have never had the time or money to visit. The list is very long. Although it doesn't count, I would take pictures in all of these places.

Do you wear glasses? If so, describe them, if not, why not? Don't you like glasses?

Anything less than 6 feet away is nothing but a blur, so you'd better believe I wear glasses. I'm not one of those people who has something against glasses. What I want to know is what all of those people wearing contacts have against glasses.

What, you want a description too? Well, they're cheap, my glasses that is. The kind of reading glasses you buy off the shelf in Target (I don't know about you, but I haven't set foot in a Walmart in years, the evil slime bags. Can I count this as heroic?)

What did you have for breakfast?

A bowl of warm tofu covered with a sort of pork gravy and pickled cabbage. I'm serious.

Tell us something else!

Not only are the Olympics over. Yes! Finally! But on September 20 all restrictions on driving in Beijing ended. So thousands of Chinese yuppies can once again hop in their cars at will and sit in traffic polluting the already abysmally polluted Beijing air. Hurrah!

Now FLEE Hall of Shamers and Agents of Change and bask in all that is Mr Steve Barru and his outsider/insider guide to all things China and Photobloggish. But don't forget to always use your Photo Meme Hall of Shame ISP Anonymizer and Juicer so that when he sees no addtional traffic, HE'LL KNOW IT'S YOU!


We, your noisy upstairs neighbors, found ourselves one day with an exceedingly large amount of time which we were using for monitor the financial markets, the US Elections, learn new languages, clean the Loft of Love, do up our Christmas Cards, ring up old chums, volunteer to help dullards read, raise chickens, March for Tibet and we wondered why we had not been doing this all along.

Then in panic, it occured to us.


We were recently in the Orient for the Olympics being shown around China and Outer Mongolia with your noisy upstairs neighbor's good friend Mr Steve Barru.

Then we turned up like bad pennies at Black Rock City for Burning Man and thought we'd try shaming 'art' installations.

Setting up a trampoline for every gold spray painted, dust covered topless tart to bounce around on in the desert wiond is not what we'd call 'art' though we do enjoy it tremoundously (sic).

Just as we were about the be chased out for trying to set the Burning Man on fire early so we could leave, we ran into your noisy upstairs neighbor's OTHER good friend, Mr Iron Flatline.

The World, She eez so big and so leetle at the same time.

So we've given up all the rest and show you you, this we found tied to a rock and thrown through our window...

Photo Friday- Extraordinary
Maile Lani (Man with finger in air)

CharlesFuller (Man drinking orange juice in front of corn)

Blursurfing (girl with purse)

No Hitter! (group hug)

Balloon Clown (err...Balloon clown)

That's all for the moment. Hey. Has Tuesday Challenge died again? - Agent T

Upon checking it does appear that Tuesday Challenge is on the fritz which means we'll have 2 fewer members at the upcoming Annual Bretton Woods Photomeme Moderator Summit. What does that mean to you? Nothing! To us? Two unclaimed lap dancers!

There is something difficult about Tuesdays. Maybe it's Monday. PhotoFrank from Photoschau and all points German used to own the day until he gave it up for other pursuits like a life and handed it off to a couple of Brits where it has sat until, seemingly, they gave up running a photomeme for a life, also. We hope this trend doesn't continue. Or maybe they are copying PhotoSharks who takes unexplained weeks off at a time only to come back like they weren't caught with their knickers down.

Much like us.

Well...except for the life part.