Archive | December, 2010
December 31, 2010

POTD: Human mosaic at the Arirang Mass Games

mass games

mass games

These “human mosaics” at the Arirang Festival Mass Games are composed of 20,000 North Korean schoolchildren sitting at one end of the stadium, each one of them holding a flip-book that contains 170 different colored panels. An instructor notifies them when to flip pages in the book, thus changing the background scene.

pin it button POTD: Human mosaic at the Arirang Mass Games
December 30, 2010

POTD: Eiffel Tower

eiffel tower

eiffel tower

Well, everyone’s heard of this place, so there isn’t much more to say. Built in 1889, the Eiffel Tower is now the prominent symbol of both Paris and France.

pin it button POTD: Eiffel Tower
December 29, 2010

POTD: More socialist realism in Pyongyang

tower of juche idea

tower of juche idea

This is a statue of a worker, peasant, and intellectual in front of the Tower of Juche Idea in Pyongyang, North Korea. I found this statue to be quite similar to Vera Mukhina’s “Worker and Kolkhoz Woman” statue in Moscow.

pin it button POTD: More socialist realism in Pyongyang
December 28, 2010

POTD: Socialist Realism in Pyongyang

north korean socialist realism

north korean socialist realism

A sculpture of DPRK soldiers in the style of socialist realism, located near the Mansudae Grand Monument to Kim Il-Sung in Pyongyang, North Korea.

pin it button POTD: Socialist Realism in Pyongyang
December 27, 2010

POTD: Atlas statue in front of Rockefeller Center in NYC

atlas statue in NYC

atlas statue in NYC

This is the Atlas statue outside Rockefeller Center in New York City. It was sculpted by Lee Lawrie and Rene Paul Chambellan and installed in its present location in 1937. The statue is 45 feet tall, and includes a 15-foot figure of the Ancient Greek Titan Atlas holding the heavens.

One of the great things about living in DC is that it is so close to some of the major cities on the East Coast, including New York. Short trips to New York from DC are quite easy. Flights to New York leave DC every hour, or you can catch some of the cheap Chinatown buses or take Amtrak (I personally prefer BoltBus). It’s a great place to spend a weekend when you just have to get out of DC.

pin it button POTD: Atlas statue in front of Rockefeller Center in NYC
December 26, 2010

POTD: Pink’s Hot Dogs in Hollywood

pink

pink's hot dogs

Forget Ben’s Chili Bowl, Pink’s Hot Dogs is where it’s at. Founded in 1939, Pink’s has been serving hot dogs to hungry Angelenos since. The line is always long, which is fine, because that gives you plenty of time to peruse their extensive menu. This photo was taken during my first trip to Pink’s back in 2005. I opted for the “Ozzy Osbourne” dog (Spicy Polish dog, nacho cheese, American cheese, grilled onions, guacamole & chopped tomatoes) and onion rings, while my friend Ryan chose the Ozzy dog and “Guadalajara” dog (relish, onions, tomatoes, topped with sour cream). The onion rings are pretty damn good, too. Start looking for some Los Angeles flights so you can try this place for yourself.

pin it button POTD: Pinks Hot Dogs in Hollywood
December 25, 2010

POTD: Christmas tree in Prague’s Old Town Square

I’ve never been good at night time photography, but this will have to do. This is Prague’s Old Town Square, shortly after Christmas. Last year we spent Christmas week in Berlin, Prague, and Vienna. This year I’m back home in sunny Palm Desert, California. Merry Christmas, everyone!

pin it button POTD: Christmas tree in Pragues Old Town Square
December 24, 2010

POTD: Big brother is watching in Beijing

cameras in Tiananmen Square

cameras in Tiananmen Square

You can find large lampposts with these cameras all over Tiananmen Square (these particular cameras are situated near the Chairman Mao Memorial Hall) along with numerous uniformed and plainclothes police officers. Since Tiananmen Square has been the site of important demonstrations, the authorities continue to keep a watchful eye on any activities taking place there (exhibit any political activity and you will be quickly whisked away). Despite the government, China is a fascinating country to visit. Cheap flights to Beijing are often available during the winter and there are plenty of different-priced accommodations to choose from.

pin it button POTD: Big brother is watching in Beijing
December 23, 2010

POTD: The Enola Gay

enola gay

enola gay

Located at the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center (the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum annex near Dulles Airport), this Boeing B-29 Superfortress was the first aircraft to drop an atomic bomb as a weapon of war. On August 6, 1945, the Enola Gay dropped an atomic bomb code-named “Little Boy” over the Japanese city of Hiroshima, causing extreme damage and immediately killing 70,000 people.

pin it button POTD: The Enola Gay
December 22, 2010

POTD: Taekwondo at the Arirang Mass Games

arirang mass games

arirang mass games

Taekwondo athletes perform at the Arirang Mass Games in Pyongyang, North Korea. What exactly are the mass games? Well, take 100,000 North Koreans, place them in the largest stadium in the world, add some perfectly choreographed gymnastics, dancing, singing, and a heavy dose of propaganda, and the end result is a massive show glorifying the achievements of North Korea and its eternal President, Kim Il-Sung.

pin it button POTD: Taekwondo at the Arirang Mass Games