Just News [en]

Everything fine, India is less adventurous, more photos and videos online.

India is clearly less adventurous than it was for me, and there is therefore less to tell. I guess I’m adapting to the place too well! I’m having a very nice quiet time here, between walking the Shinde dogs and going out to eat in various places.

I went to see The Last Samurai last night. My mid-day meal was the occasion of using up a roll of digital film (understand: a memory stick) shooting pictures of Madhav’s friends. The Crab&Beer photographs are now online for your viewing in the Dumps section. I’ve also made more videos you can go and see.

Obviously, I’m not getting a lot of access to the Internet. Nisha and Shinde do live pretty far off, so if I get to check my mail once every two or three days I consider myself lucky. Please don’t hesitate to use the marvels of modern technology (understand: SMS) if you need to get in touch — as I said, my phone number is in the comments to the entry before last.

Enjoy the photos and the videos!

Update: just a note (for Mark, particularly) concerning the camera. I left my fancy phone behind in Switzerland, and a collegue of mine lent me a pretty sexy Sony Handycam — that’s what I’m using for the photographs and videos. I’m doing many more videos on tape, but those will have to wait until my return to Switzerland to see the light of the web.

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1,2,3 Soleils et Kali Nagin Ke Jaisi [fr]

1,2,3 Soleils et Kali Nagin Ke Jaisi ont la même musique. Qui est coupable de pompage?

Chers lecteurs, je me permets de solliciter votre culture pour tenter de répondre à  une question qui me turlupine. J’ai demandé à  mon copain Google, mais il n’a pas été capable de m’aider.

Connaissez-vous la chanson 1,2,3 Soleils, chantée en 1998 par Khaled, Taha et Faudel?

Cet été, j’ai eu la surprise de l’entendre un soir dans un restaurant. Je l’ai reconnue tout de suite, bien sûr, car elle m’avait accompagnée durant tout mon séjour à  Calcutta. Passé l’étonnement d’entendre un tube Bollywood dans un restaurant tunisien, j’ai brutalement réalisé que ce n’était pas tout à  fait la même chanson…

La question est la suivante: qui a pompé qui? Les dates semblent jouer en défaveur des indiens (ce qui n’est pas une grande surprise): 1,2,3 Soleils a été enregistré en 1998, alors que le film Mann date de 1999.

Je semble donc avoir répondu à  ma question. Comme quoi, s’adresser à  son lectorat semble bien la meilleur manière de résoudre ses problèmes! Un doute subsiste, cependant: et si la musique 1,2,3 Soleils et Kali Nagin Ke Jaisi provenait d’une source traditionnelle? (On peut toujours rêver…)

Si vous savez quoi que ce soit concernant cette histoire, ou bien qui a écrit 1,2,3 Soleils… les commentaires sont à  vous!

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Movie Evening [en]

Back from seeing Elephant with a knot in my stomach and a sick feeling inside.

The cat is asleep in my clean laundry. I pick him up and hold him close. He presses his head against my neck and purrs right through my chest.

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Drained Ramble [en]

Zürich-Lausanne train, 5:30 p.m.

Back in the fridge. Luckily, the carriage is packed with warm bodies and I actually did buy myself a jacket in Zürich station on arriving this morning. Quite a nice black jacket too; I’d been wanting one for some time now.

My brain has melted. Trips to Zürich are always nice, but intense. I had a crash course in forecasting and scheduling. I’ll probably be needing more once I get over this first bit.

Back to the “lifelog”? I went to see Hero last night at the Open Air cinema. Beautiful visuals, heroic story, choregraphed fighting scenes. I’ve been to the Open Air a lot this year. I’ll be going again on Wednesday.

The laptop is nice and warm on my knees now, just how I would have liked it this morning. I had to take my jacket off a few minutes ago — body heat seems efficient for countering A/C. Or maybe it’s because this is another type of carriage, which at least doesn’t spout cold air just next to the seats.

This being possibly one of the most boring things I’ve ever written, I think I’ll stop right here and avoid inflicting upon you the rest of the journey to Lausanne. I’d rather advise you to take a peek at what my brother has to say about Argentina, which he will be visiting for the next six weeks.

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Projectionniste à  Lausanne [fr]

Quelques vidéos de Virginie, qui travaille comme projectionniste.

[en] Here are some videos of my friend Virginie, who works in a local cinema.

Outre les vidéos stupides que vous avez sans doute déjà  vues, nous avons également profité du week-end dernier pour tourner quelques séquences sur le métier de projectionniste et le Ciné Qua Non à  Lausanne où travaille Virginie (ma salle préférée, soit dit en passant).

Bien entendu, il faudrait pouvoir faire un joli montage de tout ça, mais nos moyens techniques sont pour le moment limités. Il vous faudra donc subir (!) les séquences telles quelles, sans édition ni censure aucune.

Tout d’abord, nous allons nous rendre dans les coulisses [1.6 Mb] du cinéma, où nous allons avoir droit à  une visite guidée de la cabine de projection [6.6 Mb]. Après un premier interview de Virginie [7.9 Mb], un deuxième interview de Virginie [7.5 Mb] et… encore un interview [4.1 Mb], c’est une visite guidée [8.0 Mb] en règle [7.9 Mb] (et en deux parties!) du cinéma qui nous attend…

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Mutants, Anyone? [en]

Right. So I’ve just come back from seeing X-Men 2, and I absolutely loved it. OK, I’ll admit to crappy cinematographic taste every now and again; but all these mutant stories must hit right on a soft spot of mine.

Has anybody else spent a fair amount of teenage years devouring Perry Rhodan books?

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Dans l'angle mort – la secretaire d'Hitler [en]

Un documentaire qui ne se promène malheureusement déjà  plus sur les écrans mais qu’il faudrait voir absolument : Dans l’angle mort. Un témoignage, celui de la femme qui fut durant la guerre la secrétaire personnelle d’Hitler.

Véritablement « dans l’angle mort », trop proche du coeur de cette terre pour en mesurer l’enfer, elle passa sa vie à  ne pouvoir se pardonner de n’avoir rien vu, alors qu’elle était là .

Une leçon d’histoire (les derniers jours dans le bunker avant le suicide d’Hitler) et une leçon de vie également, parcours de cette femme qui avait toujours refusé jusqu’ici de raconter son histoire.

56 ans après la fin de la guerre, un témoin oculaire et auditif prend la parole. La propre expérience de Traudl Junge la détermina à  devenir une farouche adversaire du national-socialisme, qui semble en même temps souffrir au plus haut point de son incapacité à  jamais pardonner à  la jeune fille qu’elle était, sa naïveté et son ignorance d’alors.

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The Lord of the Rings [en]

I have just finished reading The Lord of the Rings. If I remember correctly, this must be my fourth or fifth attempt to read the books. The furthest I have reached seems to be the very first pages of the third book, if my bookmark does not lie. My memory of those pages read many years ago has dimmed to near to nothingness.

I am one of the many people for whom the film saved the books. I had given up on reading them.

I am coming to the conclusion that The Lord of the Rings is not a book most enjoyed when first read. On the first reading, one is swamped with strange names and places, riddles and comments on the unfamiliar lore and history of Middle-earth. (Information overload, anyone?) The story unfolds slowly, too slowly, and one loses track of the complex plot and dozes off to sleep amidst poetic descriptions of beautiful land or fair deeds.

The Lord of the Rings seems written for those already familiar with a marvellously complex world Tolkien created. In any case, some familiarity with the world in question seems required to thoroughly enjoy the epic.

The film did not put me to sleep. They gave me a reasonably clear view of the plot, allowing me to dive into the books and enjoy the tale being told without feeling too lost. I am looking forward to reading the books again. But counting my previous attempts, it really took me hundreds of pages to learn to enjoy Tolkien.

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Death of Richard Harris [en]

Crop Circles [en]

Have you seen the movie Signs? Do, it’s a good one. A bit more scary than expected, though.

Actually, I’m not here to tell you about the movie, but to throw you some tidbits on crop circles. Crop circles are strange geometrical designs which appear overnight in fields.

Various theories try to explain their origin. As far as I’m concerned, Occam’s Razor rules in this case, and I vote for a perfectly human (albeit maybe somewhat mischievious) origin.

The Scientific American has published a very interesting article in which a crop circle maker tells us how he goes about the job.

For more insight from the makers, visit circlemakers – a comprehensive website devoted to the art and craft of crop circle making. Visit the beautiful photo gallery. Read Trickster, a long but interesting article on the history of crop circles and an analysis of the various beliefs surrounding them. I recommend printing it out.

[Thanks to Martine for pointing out the Scientific American article some time back.]

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