Modern Times and The Telephone or (Don’t) Answer Your F#%^&ing Phone!

(Don’t) Answer Your F#%^&ing Phone!

In the early 1900s the use of telephones became popular with post offices, railway stations, important governmental centers, a few nationally distributed newspapers, large international corporations, and of course the wealthy – and used mostly for business.

Once telephones were set up and quasi-affordable, they became all the Rage.

Instead of hopping into your Ford, Studebaker, Packard, or perhaps your horse & buggy or probably more frequently – a nice long walk – to call on a friend, you could just pick up your telephone receiver and get connected to the person you wanted to reach.

Telephones back in the old days generally were used for just a few reasons, setting up appointments (business or lunch date for example) or getting in touch with someone who lived far away (back then a few miles – if you had to walk – WAS far away!)

I remember as a young’un, our telephone had its special area on a small table with the white pages (for residence) and the yellow pages (for businesses) just under it. There was a cup with a few pencils, pens and paper for writing notes. It was a shrine of sorts.

Most of us had memorized all the numbers (it was possible for one to know a hundred numbers!) for family, friends, small businesses we frequented and of course the emergency numbers.

We had a rotary dial and I remember hating to dial numbers that had too many nines in it.

When the phone rang, we stopped what we were doing and rushed over to it. Mom would pick up the phone with a cordial ‘hello?’ sometimes adding ‘Davies Residence’.  My brother, sister and I would jump up and down and ask, ‘who is it?  Gramma? Granpa?’  Then mother would sit down in her telephone chair and chat and my siblings and I were left to our own devices.

Soon we – as we got older – were getting calls ourselves from classmates, cousins and such. Who remembers the dreaded busy signal? Back then, you would know that the line was ‘busy’ by that irritating Buzz in 4/4 time.  Since there was no ‘call waiting’ back then, we had to wait patiently for them to end their call. Of course the only way we knew this was to keep trying until we finally got through. Oh, and there was no REDIAL.  You had to put your finger into the circle slot on your phone and actually DIAL the number (and hate all the more those numbers with a lot of NINES in number!).

Times have changed of course. We don’t have to memorize anyone’s number anymore (I think presently, I know three numbers including my own) …and ‘dialing?’ It is funny how we still use the words dialing and hang-up the phone – though now we do neither.

We can turn our device on (which is technically not even a telephone anymore, but better described as a tele-communication device) and just say the name of the person we want to reach. There is no more busy signal, we can leave a voice message. We can choose not to call but to text, and we don’t even have to write that text! Technology certainly has brought us a long way… and I must admit, it is awesome and convenient. BUT…..

One thing that hasn’t really changed since the days of the early telephone, but has become much more commonplace – and much more irritating –  is the constant (and some might feel ‘pleasant’) interruptions the tele-communication device bestows upon us.

If you and I were sitting on a comfortable bench in a beautiful quiet park and having a very nice conversation, or perhaps a private business meeting, and then someone – out of the blue – yelled out your name and ran over to us and immediately commandeered our one-on-one time, most civilized people would consider that interruption quite rude – unless of course it was an emergency. 

The modern tele-communication device has no moral obligation, no ethics and indeed, no shame. Most don’t think twice about stopping someone in mid F@#$%^&* sentence to answer a call…

…and from what I have observed it is usually a frivolous call. 

These interruptions disrupt the meter, the thought process and continuity of our conversation that we just got – I dare say – shanghaied from.

How can one go back to the original good feeling after a proverbial slap in the face?

I will grant that some phone calls are chalked up as ‘saved by the bell’ – indeed, I’ve been saved quite a few times by that ominous bell.

But in an age where one-on-one contact, conversation and intimate interactions (where one can experience chemistry with another real live person, pick up nuances from a gesture, feel the warmth of a smile, a touch on the arm) are getting less and less frequent with every generation compounded with the advancement of technology, I say, don’t let this modern tele-communication device hamper our meetinginteractions with real people.

… and indeed! Don’t let it hamper our alone time when –in the words of a buddy recently posting on a social media site wrote – “I just wanna read my memes in peace without you interrupting and stressing me out with your demands for instant attention”

That sentence right there prompted me to write this Blog Post.

Thanks JLR!

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You can follow the Militant Hippi/Boston Paul on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/BostonPaul
or

Twitter: https://twitter.com/MilitantHippi

1995

 

 

Published in: on September 8, 2017 at 1:35 PM  Leave a Comment  
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Why Taiwanese Make Certain English Mistakes

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Greetings!  In this essay, I am going to tackle:

Why Taiwanese English students make some of the mistakes they do when speaking English.

I have lived in Taiwan for a long time… almost half my life. I’ve been teaching here (among many other things) for most of that time. In the years I’ve been teaching English (and speaking Chinese) in Taiwan, I’ve figured a few things out…

One: How F#$%^&N’ CRAZY English is! 
And how it often makes no sense if you’re not a native speaker (a lot of it doesn’t make sense to me sometimes and I AM a native speaker!).

Two: Why Taiwanese make some of the mistakes they do when speaking English.  This is what I will focus on here.

This information might also be helpful for English teachers here in Taiwan – as you will now know – if you didn’t already – why your English students make certain pronunciation mistakes.

For the Taiwanese English students reading this, you can now be more aware of your pronunciation and will also understand why- when speaking English– you may make certain mistakes. If you understand why you are making mistakes when speaking, you will be that much more vigilant. Then practice saying those words until you get it right.

Best to practice with a native speaker as most Taiwanese English teachers are the ones perpetuating these pronunciation mistakes.

For the record, back in the days when I was studying Chinese I realized there are certain sounds in Chinese we do not have in English. For example, 出去Chūqù (go out) for a lot of western speakers is a real pain in the butt! I would say Choo Choo or ChooChee!  Grrrr).

I understand your frustration when trying to learn new sounds.

So anyway here it is! Taiwanese English mistakes (a few of them anyway) explained!

While there are 44 sounds in English – (19 vowel sounds including 5 long vowels, 5 short vowels, 3 diphthongs, 2 ‘oo’ sounds, 4 ‘r’ controlled vowel sounds and 25 consonant sounds – I will write an essay about this in the future) –  there are 37 sounds in Chinese AND all Chinese words have only 3 kinds of endings.

Yes, that’s right.

THREE ENDINGS ONLY. 

I realized this whilst learning pinyin 拼音 (pinyin is Romanized Chinese) and changing Chinese characters into pinyin when I was studying Chinese back in the early 1990s. I also noticed this when speaking with locals who wanted to practice their English.

My local Taiwanese friends would call me PaulO.  I would say… no just Paul, thank you.  But they HAD to add that vowel sound.  I always wondered why.
I would listen to Taiwanese children sing the alphabet. When they got to HIJK…the following LMNOP turned into…  LOLOP!

What happened to M and N??

Anyway, Taiwanese make mistakes speaking English just like westerners make mistakes speaking Chinese.
(I mean 水餃[Shuǐjiǎo] dumplings and 睡覺 [shuìjiào] sleep Come on! REALLY! GAH!)

The three Chinese endings are:

 

1. an N sound as in 飯 fan (rice) 玩 wán (play), 笨 bèn (stupid).

 

2. an NG sound as in 王 Wang (king), 放fàng (put) and等děng (wait)

 

3. a vowel sound (a couple of these sounds we do not have in English. For example 熱 rè which means hot)

I will write a Chinese sentence about a person who sees a girl, thinks she is beautiful and wants to have tea with her. I want you to pay attention to the 拼音Hànyǔ Pīnyīn and the endings (in red).

小姐,你很漂亮 Xiǎo j, nǐn piào liang (Miss, you are beautiful).

你要不要 Nǐ yào bù yào (Do you want)

跟我一起喝茶 gēn wǒ yī qǐ hē chá (drink tea with me?)

See how it is precisely what I described above?

Endings are all N/NG/Vowel sounds.

Take ANY sentence in Chinese and change it to pinyin and you will be able to see (and hear!) only the N/NG/VOWEL SOUND.

This is why of the 26 letters in the alphabet, many Taiwanese often mispronounce the following:

F (ef) as efoo.

H (aich) as aichu

L (el) as ello (My name is Paul, but in Taiwan many call me Paulo or Pau)

S (es) as esih (yes sounds like yessih)

X (ex) as eckasih

Taiwanese also often mispronounce G, J, N, R, V, W, Z.

(G is my pet peeve… they use a sound we do not have in English.. the French u which sounds a bit like the ew in pew. The crazy thing is that Chinese does have a G sound 雞 jī (chicken)!

Words ending in M are mispronounced and N or NG are substituted. So handsome would be pronounced hansun. Some would be pronounced sun.

Which makes phrases like some flowers (many Taiwanese say sun flowers) confusing.

I will come back and edit this at a future date and add other bits.

For now, I hope you enjoyed this little read and I hope it helps!

Happy Learning!

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You can follow the Militant Hippi/Boston Paul on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/BostonPaul
or

Twitter: https://twitter.com/MilitantHippi

1995

 

My U.S. Journal: Going ‘Home’ – Last Time I visited The USA…

…Bush Jr. was president. I had a Nokia Cell phone (smart phones weren’t invented yet), Facebook wasn’t a ‘thing’ and my eleven year old son was eleven months old.

It was August 2006 when I went back to the States to go to my brother’s wedding and show off our brand new son to the family. It was great to be back.  Though I didn’t get to see as many people as I had hoped, it was still awesome to see family including all my new cousins born from my old cousins, new nephews & nieces and a slew of family members I had not met yet. It was very cool seeing old friends again and re-connecting.

When we were preparing to go back to Taiwan, we promised friends and family that we’d be back as soon as possible though I had a gut feeling that I would not see them for a while. I did not realize it would be over a decade, however.

As things go, going back to the States for another visit, though alluring, proved a lot more difficult than I imagined.  When I had the money, I didn’t have the time… when I finally got some time, finances was a factor.. there was also the political climate, the new regulations at airports where they all but cavity search you – which doesn’t necessarily prevent terrorism, but does give some perverted agent a Power Over You hard on.

So we lived our exciting lives here on our Island Paradise.  Our son was growing up and doing his thing (art, music and inventing stuff), I immersed myself in the Taiwan music and art culture scene, we took care of our animals, ran a bar and live music venue. I played in bands, went to music festivals, helped build and strengthen a community of artists and musicians. It was a whirlwind of hard work and good times.

Two years went by, then five and the next thing I know 2017 slapped me in the face and woke me up.

I saw pictures of the family children now attending university. The new cousins born from old cousins were now getting old –  grown up, getting married and having kids of their own. Family members and family friends began to die, including a couple of loved uncles, my aunt, a beloved cousin and alas the Family Matriarch my Mother’s mother Grandma Ellie.  When would it end?  I realized it wouldn’t.

My son would see a picture of someone in my family, my mother, father, an aunt or cousin, and ask, who is that?  I knew that I had to get back for a visit.

Though my home is here in Taiwan, and I’ll most likely live out the rest of my days here, I still owed it to my son to meet and know the other half of his family.  I also owe it to my family – and myself – to go back and be with them.  I could not bear to be away from my son for a few days never mind a decade. It took me being a father to understand how my absence must have made my parents feel… especially my mother. My family – through all the ups and downs (and for some – all the religious and political differences) – are still part of who I am.

I remember the cookouts, the holiday dinners, the late night games, the laughs. As we got older and began our own life, I remember visiting at holidays for the reminiscing, the confessing of the naughty things we did as teenagers – to my mother, aunts and uncles’ amused chagrin.

I remember the jams in my friend’s basement as a teenager, the drinking sessions near a lake in Hanover, getting stoned in a quiet area of Norwell High School, the drives on roller coaster road in Hingham.

I relive the times after I got out of the army, got a job in law enforcement and enrolled in University. The Cheese & Wine Gatherings in Dorchester for example with my Uni friends meeting my Colleagues in Law Enforcement, my biker friends meeting some of my friends from church (that I had long not been a part of) at my place on Friday nights… boy those were some interesting conversations.

Now, as I sit here writing in my studio in Taiwan, pondering this Journey across the World I’m giddy as a child at a birthday party. I’m looking forward to seeing old friends and acquaintances from high school, meet my nephews and cousins, meet my friends’ families and see my Mum who still has no idea we’re coming back.

I’m looking forward to capturing at least a little part of my Life Before Taiwan when we go back again this time… bring this History to the forefront.

 One final note:

We are leaving in February and I’m trying to explain to my son how #$%^&* cold it is in Massachusetts.

I know my Bostonian Buddies, My Masshole Mates, My Brothers from other Mothers and Sisters from other Misters are going to hate me for this one BUT while we’re there….

….I hope it snows!

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This is Part One of Boston Paul’s Going Home Blogumentary.

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Paul at 17 years old Hanover Mass

Seventeen Years Old Going on 40

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Thank you for reading!

1995

You can Follow the Militant Hippi/Boston Paul on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/BostonPaul
or
Twitter: https://twitter.com/MilitantHippi

You might also enjoy this essay about FRIENDS:

https://bostonpaul.wordpress.com/2012/08/13/who-what-is-a-friend-really/

and

https://bostonpaul.wordpress.com/2016/12/31/hippy-new-year-thoughts-pinballing-inside-my-skull/

Published in: on January 27, 2017 at 1:43 PM  Comments (2)  
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Hippy New Year – Thoughts PinBalling Inside My Skull

Hippy New Year – Thoughts Pin-Balling Inside My Skull

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As 2016 comes to a grinding halt and we set our eyes on 2017, there are many thoughts pin-balling inside my skull.

Thought I’d try to make sense of those thoughts here.
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I’m getting older.  I still feel like I’m in my 30s, act like I’m in my 20s but am starting to think like I’m in my 80s.  It’s that latter thought that reminds me I’m getting older.

What will I regret or be proud of when I’m in my 80s sitting in a rocking chair (or a tatami mat or bean bag chair) and pondering (lamenting) on all the things that filled my life?

Things I didn’t do but wanted to; things I’ve done and didn’t want to do; and of course the things I’ve pursued and accomplished.

How will I feel about the life I’ve lived from day to day?  From the Exciting to the Mundane, the Happiness to the Insane, the love filled days – to days of bitter sadness that seemed impossible to shake (fortunately those have been few and far between)?

That Day to Day life that has not only shaped who I am today but will – I presume –  have made me the person I will be in my 80s (and 90s! And if all goes well when I’m a Centurion… er… Centenarian!) sitting on a tatami mat (or beanbag chair!) sipping green tea, or a fine red wine or the juice of some fruit I’ve just blended.

When I’m in my 80s or 90s, I’m sure that I will appreciate how the Past me took care of the Future me.

And if you think about it, both the Past me and the Future me are living in the Now.

But we don’t walk our Journey Paths alone. So…

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On this last day of the year, I think about the friends and family who have passed into the great Unknown.

I think about all the musicians who died this past year. Musicians whose music helped raise me in areas of my life where my mother and father couldn’t.

I watch my son, getting older, trying new things, loving animals (as he takes care of two roosters, two hens, two turtles, a fish, a cat, a dog, and cockroach from Madagascar), pursuing art, practicing judo and taking on life armed with curiosity and gusto.
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I think fondly of my wife who has been there through it all. My ups and downs. Our ups and downs. The topsy-turvy curve balls life has thrown at us. I can’t believe we have been together almost two decades.

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I regularly meet with special friends a few times a week to make music, drink wine, laugh, talk about love and life, stare at a fire.  I don’t know where I would be – or who I would be – without them.

All these special people I’ve mentioned above are my Family.

I miss my friends and family back in the ‘old’ country – a place I left in my 20s to see the world.

I think about them often and always wonder – in an alternate universe – What If?

What if I never left my country of birth? What would I be doing now? What would they be doing now?

Pebbles. Lakes. Ripples.

With about half my life under my belt and – The Universe willing – another half to go, I seek to continue to try to make myself a better person, to help make the world a better place – anyway I can – by being nice to people, giving what I can, sharing my art and ideas, helping others with their art and helping them make their ideas a reality.

Pebbles. Lakes. Ripples.

As I think about the past year and look forward to this next one and as the pinball stops ricocheting in my brain, this clichéd mantra comes to mind – and for some reason it is really hitting home right now as I sit and write:

We’re all in this together.

In other words, we only have us, so let’s treat each other well.

May 2017 bring you Happiness, Peace, Love & Adventure!

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1995

You can Follow the Militant Hippi/Boston Paul on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/BostonPaul
or
Twitter: https://twitter.com/MilitantHippi

You might also enjoy this essay about FRIENDS:

https://bostonpaul.wordpress.com/2012/08/13/who-what-is-a-friend-really/

 

Published in: on December 31, 2016 at 2:55 PM  Comments (5)  
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LUVstock & The LUV2016 Festival

%e5%b8%83%e6%99%af600x300cmLUVstock!

Part One: The LUVhistory

Part Two: The Mission

Part Three: LUVstock 2016 AKA LUV2016

Part Four: Pictures from LUV2016!

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Part One: The LUVhistory

History of LUV

    LUVstock has been around for a while.  It started out as a musician’s birthday party (we’ll call him “P”) in an empty residential neighborhood way back in 2000. As the years roared on, the party got bigger and the impromptu, improvisational jams turned into actual shows with bands asking or being asked if they wanted to play at the party.
    Two bands turned to five, then five bands to nine.  The initial birthday party had thirty or so guests that turned into a gathering with fifty or sixty guests that eventually became a mini fest with over 100 guests attending… and it kept growing!

P’s Birthday Party turned into P-Stock (as a bit of a joke when the party was written about in a local magazine) and once it became a thing (in 2006) it became a two day mini-fest and was renamed LUVstock. 

Vendors replaced potluck. A LUVcrew and voLUVteers were needed to take care of logistics and bits. 

LUVstock subsequently had to move out of the neighborhood into a bigger venue (2009) and grew from 10 bands to about fifty bands (with a few DJs) on three stages over two days.

LUVstock was held in an old unused amusement park. It was special. Old rides from yesteryear with peeling paint, old machinery, overgrown shrubbery, screams of delight from children still echoing in the wind – all added to the charm of the venue.

At the LUVmeetings it was often brought up if there should be a cover charge.  P always said no.  He paid out of pocket. Donations were then suggested and P thought that might be a good idea as costs – for what was becoming a big festival – were increasing. Rent for the venue, three stages, sound & sound crew, vending tents, T-shirts, crew, staff, bar stock…. and everything else.

Guest Attendance for LUVstock doubled at this new venue and by the time 2012 rolled around LUVstock saw roughly a couple thousand people over two days.  It had grown into a huge production and was done with no budget and supported only through donations.

LUVstock became a social experiment.  Could The People all pull together and pay for a big festival?  It came close, but was always short.

In 2013 it was projected to grow even more. A couple days prior however, it was reported that a Huge Typhoon was going to hit the Island.  Taichung, where LUVstock was held, almost never got hit hard, so LUV wasn’t called off.

The winds and rain started the Friday night before and people began arriving.

Most of the vendors pulled out, stage/sound crew had to pull out, a few out-of-town bands pulled out. Was the LUV called off? Perhaps it should have been, but they decided to go for it! The Festival was moved inside The Refuge (which could hold about 300 people) and while the Music was ROCKING inside, the Typhoon was ROCKING outside!  LUVstockers braved The Winds and Rain from Mother Nature who happened to not be in a nurturing mood that weekend.

LUV2013 was a magical one… it also happened to be the last one at that old amusement park as the land was sold a couple of months later.

The organizers then looked for a new location. Everyone searched high and low, far and wide. The organizers even thought to bring LUV to another city. Venues were either too expensive, too far away, too many neighbors (thus sound complaints) or not compatible with the LUV vibe.

Summer 2014 saw no suitable venue.  So LUVstock – after five years of being held on a vast piece of land – was brought back to its original location in the now not-so-empty residential neighborhood.  It was called MiniLUV and had a few bands, a vendor, and some very awesome attendees.  Another MiniLUV was held in 2015.  The LUV was kept alive. The organizers refusing to let that flame blow out.

Then in March of 2016, P was asked to help organize another unrelated event – a going away party for a friend. The venue they found happened to be a farm in the jungle of a mountain. A venue that P had been to a few times before – many years ago – for a few trance parties.

The party happened. It was awesome. P and the landlords (a couple of farmers) drank tea together and bonded. They asked if P wanted to do another event there one day (they didn’t want any trance parties, but they loved the Live Music!). The LUVseed began to grow.

The LUVstock Music Festival now has a new venue, a new time of year (changing from a summer event to an autumn one) and reasonably priced tickets.

This past November 12 had hundreds of people come from all over the island to get a little bit of LUV.

To all the LUVstockers past and present who have waited patiently for us to put on our magical Festival again….  THANK YOU!

….LUVstock is back!

(If you want to be involved with LUVstock please drop us an Email: LUVstock@live.com and share your ideas!  If you are a Band, DJ, Vendor, Sponsor, want to voLUVteer or have any questions… drop us a line!)

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Part Two: The Mission

LUVstock means so many things to so many people over the last decade.  In this day and age, the world needs a little bit more love… if people are shown love they wil spread love. It’s contagious.  For years LUVstock was a donations only event.  In 2016, the organizers decided to sell tickets to pay for everything needed.  The LUVorganizers kept the tickets as cheap as possible for a trial One Day Event.  The Event went off without a hitch, got all the bills paid and invoked good feelings all around.

The LUVstock mission will to be to continue that Groovy LUV Vibe. In 2017, LUVstock will be a two day event with 3 stages, will include events within the event.  There will be more paid staff on hand to make things go that much more smoother; there will be more trained voLUVteers on hand to hep with the event. The landlords have promised the LUVstock organizers more land to use on there farm and planning for the LUV will begin much earlier. So stay tuned!

(We will write more about the LUV Mission soon!)

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Part Three: LUVstock 2016 AKA LUV2016

The Organizers for LUVstock 2016 (the 11-ish one!) did not have the usual five months to get ready for LUVstock. They barely had two!  A lot of hustling, bustling and quick thinking was needed.  The right people at the right time came on board and they pulled it off.  There were many things the organizers wanted to do for LUV2016, but time and budget would not allow.  Still, what an awesome time!

Below is a list of Awesome Earthlings that helped in someway with the LUV.

(If you are interested in being part of LUVstock2017… Drop us an email here):

LUVstock @ live . com (no spaces)  SUBJECT:  Vendor? VoLUVteer? Sponsor?

It takes a lot of people to put on a festival and make it awesome so…. A GREAT BIG THANK YOU TO ALL THESE FINE EARTHLINGS THAT WERE PART OF THE LUV!


The LUVcrew & Staff

1. Rita Blunck (Bar/Vendors)
2. Craig Itx (Photographer/VideoGrapher)
3. Baubay Hu(Gate/Merch)
4. Miky Lai (Gate/Merch)
5. Sandra Huang (Bar/Translation/Logistics)
6. The Timmy (Security/Gate/Parking)
7. Daniel White (Vendors/General BS)
8. Rock Starkey (Security/Bands/Stage Manager)
9. Donovan (Everything Man)
10. Jonathan Taylor (Gate/Parking/ETC)
11. Adam Hoole (Bar)
12. Wing Wan-meng Chen (Bar)
13. Boston Paul (Bands/Stage/Problem Solver/Security/Scape Goat)

voLUVteers
1. Candice Cheng
2. Yujie L. Ferguson
3. Eric Ferguson
4. Michelle Li
5
. Arlan Bonwick

6. Blair Hairgreaves
7. Julianne Huang
8. Jason Grenier
9. Lincle Lin

Vendors:

1. Chinglish Café
2. SiKaKa
3. Ongoro
4. P-Joes
5. The Refuge Bar
6. Yummy Cakes
7. The Artists (Praneeta, Jade, Stephen)

Sponsors:

Chinglish Café
GuanXi Magazine
The Refuge Community
Compass Magazine


SHOUT OUTS OF APPRECIATION for helping to sell tickets:

1. Salut Pizza
2. Chinglish Café
3. 談祖翼 & Tiffany Lo (AKA Joey the Sound Guy) – 雲豹音樂事業有限公司
4. Kaya Wiltshire
5. Most of The Bands

Sound & Stage

談祖翼 from 雲豹音樂事業有限公司

The Musicians, Bands and DJs

1. The Bootleg Boots (Taichung)
2 Point 22 (.22) 點二二 (Taichung)
3. Wandering Singer Lama””修道” (Taichung)
4. The So-So’s (Taichung)
5. OCD – Hsinchu
6. Paul S Lawrence (Hualien)
7. Ghost Money All-stars (Gaoxiong)
8. DA META4/大METⒶ4 (Taichung)
9. HoDala (Taichung)
10. ManManlai with Jimi Ma (Taichung)
11. Aurora 極光樂團 (Taichung)
12. PhiloSophia (Dajia)
13. The Dark (Taichung)
14. The ShapeMaster (Taichung)
15. Jack Boyd Solo (Hsinchu)
16. The Cuervos (Hsinchu)
17. SHA DRA & Entheosid (Taipei)
18. Dave Stanley (Taichung)
19. Koyote.
20. The UkulAlien
21. Mr. Green
22. DJ Mikey J (Taichung)
23. SHA DRA (w/Kneesha) & DJ Entheosid
24. DJ K.O.K (Hsinchu)
25. DJ RoBeat

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Part Four: Pictures from LUV2016!da-meta4-for-mag

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Published in: on November 20, 2016 at 11:03 PM  Comments (3)  
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Art, Music, Taiwan & The Refuge Community for GuanXi Magazine

“Music is the universal language of mankind.”  – Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

                       Art, Music, Taiwan & The Refuge Community

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(This article was originally written for Guanxi Magazine Spring Issue/2016)

It was the year 2000 and spring was swaddling Taiwan as we moved into our new house on a dead-end street. Little did we know how that move – over the next sixteen years – would affect people’s lives – and moreover how much our own lives would change in that time.

We had worked out a pretty good deal on rent as it had only been a few months after the big devastating earthquake in the autumn of 1999. The house was a bit farther away from the city, and had a good sized yard. Perfect.

Friends began visiting from the city. They would lay in the grass, look up at a sunny sky while birds were chirping and exclaim… what a refuge!

Hearing this so many times and from so many different people we all started referring to our home as The Refuge. People brought their art, art supplies, instruments, food and ideas on the weekends. Together we would make art, music and share food and ideas. 

A Community was being built without us realizing it at first and it grew exponentially. There was no other place like it that we knew of in Taichung and at the time, no one was doing what we were doing. It was revolutionary.

Because of my love for music and art – and the whole birds of a feather concept – Our ‘refuge’ attracted artists, musicians, thinkers and supporters from all walks. Many Taiwanese frequented our place of course but there were also people coming from all around our beautiful island paradise – and the world. Then we started doing small events… some that grew into big events.

The Refuge has gone through many changes since the early 2000s and will keep changing with the times and the environment.  But one things is certain: The Refuge is all about the Art and Music Community.

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In the spring of 2011, the mayor of Taichung shutdown all the bars and music venues after a popular bar (that featured live music) burned down in Taichung, The Refuge Community defiantly stayed open. We felt it was worth the constant risk of being raided and fined just to keep the music scene alive. We had just relocated The Refuge to an old amusement park and because of the fire and subsequent shutdown of venues, we were the only venue (opened past 10PM) in Taichung where bands could play… and play they did!

Unfortunately, the land where that Refuge was for three years has since been sold to a big corporation and we have moved back to our original location. But we still have events and we still support aspiring musicians and artists.  We still have an eye out for another awesome venue, but to date, we haven’t found anything as special as when we were at that old amusement park. We’ll keep looking though!

Speaking of aspiring musicians and artists… after spending some time going to The Refuge events, and meeting the movers & shakers and supporters of The Refuge Community, many have discovered the artist within themselves. Surrounded by experienced and talented artisans from around the world, aspiring artists and musicians get the encouragement they need to go for it. The Refuge has seen thousands come through its doors.  And what a high it is to see people discover their talent or develop skills they never knew they had. What a high it is to see someone with skills and finally getting the opportunity to see those skills manifest. The Refuge Community gives people that necessary encouragement to grow. And that is beautiful.

And it’s that high and that beauty that keeps us doing what we do.

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The Refuge acts as a nerve center for charitable and cultural activities and puts on a variety of large and small events. Some of these events include: LUVstock (Music/Art Festival), Basic Aid (Fundraising/Charitable Organization), Hobo Happiness (Folk Fest featuring Scott Cook and other Local Musicians), Luna-C (Full Moon Events with Bands & DJs) as well as helping and promoting others and their events around the Island. LUVstock for example grew from a house party with one stage, a few bands and fifty or sixty guests –  to moving to a bigger location with three stages, fifty bands, twelve DJs, vendors, camping and over 2000 guests getting their groove on for the weekend… and without ever selling out to The Man.

There is so much more The Refuge does or is part of, but this article has a word limit, so be sure to find us by looking at the links at the end of this piece.


The Refuge has an eclectic collection of art, music, doodads, trinkets, musical instruments. The Refuge boasts over a terabyte of music from around the world and over two terabytes of local music and shows that we have recorded over the years. And we have a pretty damn good sound system to listen to it all on, too! The Refuge is a friendly inviting place that is always – as many of you know – morphing into something different, new and interesting. People come from all over the Island with their ideas, and artistic know-how.

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This is what keeps The Refuge relevant, growing and fun.

Come be part of a Refuge Jam, a drum circle… come to an event (we usually have events at least once a month – look below for links!).  The Refuge is still one of very few places in Taichung that continues to have Live Music in a very chill environment.

Look at the links below to see how you can be part of The Refuge Community and be up to date for Refuge Happenings!

Come be part of what we do.

 
The Refuge is an icon in Taichung as it continues to provide Creative Outlets for Artists, Musicians, Bohemians & Truth Seekers. Come explore, create & make new connections with others.

                                           A Strong Community Makes a World of Change.

If you would like to get in touch and find out more about Boston Paul & The Refuge Community, check out the links below:

*https://www.facebook.com/BostonPaul
*https://twitter.com/MilitantHippi
*https://www.facebook.com/groups/TheRefugeCommunity
*https://www.facebook.com/TheRefugeCommunity
*https://bostonpaul.wordpress.com

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You can Follow the Militant Hippi/Boston Paul on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/BostonPaul
or
Twitter: https://twitter.com/MilitantHippi

You Might also like to read some other short stories by Boston Paul AKA The Militant Hippi:

  1. About a Great Grandfather and his Great Grandson:My Great Grandfather: When Cultures Clash. Ass kicking, long hair and Hard Knocks

2.  This is my weapon and this is my Gun, based on real life events, a young man finds himself in Central America:

https://bostonpaul.wordpress.com/2016/01/12/this-is-my-weapon-and-this-is-my-gun/

3. Hate waiting in line?  This is for you:

https://bostonpaul.wordpress.com/2011/02/11/the-express-lane-10-items-or-less/

4. The Would Be Patriot:

https://bostonpaul.wordpress.com/2010/10/05/a-good-young-man-or-lockes-socks-the-would-be-patriot/

5. A bit of Horror and suspense… never blow this guy’s candle out!

https://bostonpaul.wordpress.com/2010/07/24/short-story-the-flame-that-softly-danced/

6. Getting Stoned at The Fair

https://bostonpaul.wordpress.com/2010/01/17/short-story-stoned-at-the-fair/

 

The New Gods.

humans

I wrote this piece thirteen years ago… still valid me thinks.

                                  Who are The New Gods?

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WE The People have been slowly prepared by the Powers That Be to revere the said powers that be and the powers that were to become our gods.

Once upon a time, God – all knowing and omniscient – helped those who needed Her/Him/It. God (the higher power) ‘gave’ us Mother Earth (Nature) who in turn provided us with the Fruits of the Earth in order to maintain physical/spiritual health.

 If one looks at various Holy Books from around the world and time periods, God did not condemn the use of ‘magic’ mushrooms,  cannabis and other plants as they were the keys to unlock our minds, our souls, and see the world in different ways. These plants were not the forbidden fruit as man has suggested in the Judeo/Christian context, but power plants – power organisms – that created a ladder to the proverbial heavens, the universe, in order that we might serve God/Fellow Humans/Mother Earth and learn.

 But some men – not yet fully evolved humans (who know how to use their minds, who do not need to be greedy or selfish… yes our species has not fully evolved.. we are still – it seems – mere mammals) – and in positions of authority – used this power to dupe the ignorant.

Man made their own omniscient beings through culture, indoctrinated beliefs, superstitions, ignorance and yes hopes. Emerging from the culture and traditions were stories of god-like entities with the likes of Santa Claus, Leprechauns, the Easter Bunny and the Tooth Fairy all of whom kept an eye on you. These god-like entities knew who was naughty or nice (thus taking some of the burden away from the parents to be sure), and instilled in children that ‘someone’ was always watching.

Big Brother did not emerge with the book 1984 by George Orwell. Big Brother was already there, hidden in our traditions, hidden in the shadows of our various cultures, lurking under various guises and disguises, just waiting for someday when technology afforded the Powers That Be – AKA governments & large corporations –  to be Big Brother or better – that omniscient god (who was always watching) to see who they deemed naughty or nice.

Now there are cameras are everywhere, Orwell’s worst nightmare.

A satellite or drone may see you smoking a joint in the ‘privacy’ of your own backyard.

The only victims in victim-less crimes are those being busted for victim-less crimes.

The Powers That Be have consolidated their Power and there are no more secrets.

WE The People were warned and we heeded not that warning.

The various governments around the world and the Corporate entities that control them, or work with them, ARE that god, that big brother.  They are now that omniscient being…  they can now know your every move, your every click of the mouse. They can know what you eat, where you go, what programs and porn you watch.  And they record it all – so someone will see it someday.

The People of the World did not read the small print. We voted the politicians in who had their strings pulled by corporate banks… and in essence… we fucked ourselves.

We are now used to the idea of being “watched” as we are conditioned from childhood. Santa Claus – looking into his magic snowball – is the secret police, the NsA, the cIa… and all the other entities with dangerous initials.  

We could say that we live in a world of paranoia, but the only ones who are paranoid are the ones that are glued to the mass media spewing mass hysteria AND the ones who actually pay attention and understand just how powerful Santa Clause has become. They understand how the world is being shaped by the few who have the power to shape it.

Has our world run away?  Are we now trapped in a vicious circle from which there is no escape?

People of the world, you need to vote and play the game on the surface but pay attention! Teach the younger generation to Question Authority. Teach them how to think critically… and in order to teach them, you must practice this yourself.

Imagine there’s no country. Just us. Alone on this Earthy Spaceship floating through the universe.

Let the seeds of love, peaceful anarchy, empathy and understanding germinate.

Rise up and fight for your freedoms.

The pursuit of happiness is not just financial success, but Freedom.   Freedoms that are eroding, are being taken away as you smile and think, I feel safe! My benevolent government is watching out for me! It is protecting me from evil forces outside our borders

You have bought the lie they sold you thus securing (y)our demise….

The Powers That Be want total control… they make Mother Nature’s Gifts illegal, they punish instead of educating The People. 

Because of our ignorance, We The People will suffer – and it is just the beginning.

What will we do about it?

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You can Follow the Militant Hippi/Boston Paul on Facebook: 

https://www.facebook.com/BostonPaul
or
Twitter: https://twitter.com/MilitantHippi

 

Gypsi AKA The Militant Hippi

Written: September 27, 2003

Saturday 1:35 PM

Edited October 27, 2004

Wednesday, 3:44PM

Edited again March 11, 2016

 

Published in: on March 11, 2016 at 1:44 PM  Comments (1)  
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The Music of Birds, Humans & Spring.

Birds Outside my window

As Spring slowly wafts into Taiwan and the various Bird Choirs begin to join each other in concert… that dawn chorus, that symphony of titillating random melodies,  I bask in the hodgepodge of tones and pitches that bathe me in random keys (perhaps not so random) and in wavering octaves that fluctuate between different time signatures like a roller coaster in the clouds. 

Here Synchronized…. There Random.

A Symphonic Cascade, a Creative Cacophony of notes that perhaps only a Jazz or Trained Classical Musician could fathom…. and of which I am trying to fathom now.

It is beautiful.

As a musician listening to the Birds singing, I ponder why our species seems to have this innate desire to make music.

In nature, many male species of birds sing to let potential mates know that they have a piece of real estate all their own.

One strikes up another tune to attract a female who should surely be impressed with his song where then – ideally – they will start a Family.

Our male bird friend then sings to tell all other male birds of his kind to keep out.

Birds also sing to warn others of Dangers below.

Do Birds ever sing, just to hear the music?

Do they know that their cheeps, chirps and musical chatter are pleasant and pleasing to the ears?
HHhmmm.

Kind of makes me re-think what it is that motivates… (inspires!) our Species to want to  create music.

Is it not difficult to suppress that Energy we feel bubbling inside of us in the form of Creativity…  what is it that bubbles inside of us?  Where does this energy come from? And why do many of us feel this Energy constantly on the brink of bursting out and flooding our every waking moment?

Is it not our emotions –  the feelings – (that may or may not be narcissistic) that somehow need to be released through creative chaos, arranged harmonies and expressive lyrics?   Why this want – this need – to convey these emotions and feelings? Where does this desire come from?

Why do we have this desire we have to spread joy, awareness and stories about what we’ve learned on our Journey Path to others through this creative chaos, arranged harmonies, expressive lyrics?

Is it not to represent the era in which we reside… to tell a story of our world which becomes a History to future generations… a Legacy?

What is it?

The Chinese practice Ancestor Worship. That is not to say they have made their Ancestors into’gods’ in the Religious sense. This worship is considered a remembrance of where they came from. They carry on their ancestor’s Legacy in hopes that someday their Legacy will also be carried on.

That is the Human in us and it shows itself in many Guises:

The Chinese light incense in front of their great, great, great grandparents’ little shrine in their living room;  a political leader gets his face printed on a coin; the writer writes a book; the artists paints, sculpts, sketches, and pushes the limits; the Musician writes on paper or records electronically the music (& words that may accompany the music)…

…and we all take pictures with our cameras.

Indeed, we need to live forever… we need to become immortal. We need to spread our seed. We need to have Legacy through our creations whether it is a song we compose, a poem we write, a picture we take… a child we have.

Perhaps we are not that much different from the Birds singing outside my window…

Peace and Love to you all!

Published in: on January 23, 2016 at 2:25 PM  Comments (2)  
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The Problem is not Guns! It’s…

Came across this gem:

The problem is not guns

I see it more this way:

It is….

*Minds without Logic & Reason

*Homes without Love & Involvement

*Schools without Creativity & Freedom…

The last one I agree with… we don’t have Justice in the courts because the government answers to a Higher Power (Corporate Banks).

The government (Republicans or Democrats it doesn’t matter) keeps the People ignorant to maintain complete power…

…and Religion poisons everything…

Discipline in the home? Presumably discipline as in don’t spare the rod (as the plate on this vehicle is owned by someone religious)?

Recently on the news, there was a story about a couple bringing up their children with ‘strict biblical values’ and they ended up killing one of their children because they did not spare the rod... they had been reading that book by a married religious couple called The Pearls called ‘To Train up a Child’…. really??

We have never hit our son. Not once… and he’s the most genuine, politest, caring boy I know.

Our hearts should be without any number of the gods out there.

We don’t need gods to do the right thing. We need Logic Reason & Empathy. Something we all have as humans – who haven’t been poisoned by dogma.

Keep all religion out of public schools unless it is a class about religion. You want your religion to be a part of your education? Go to a religious school and knock yourself out.  Public school? Uhm no. I don’t want my tax dollars going to the religious and the myths they believe.

There should be no flags, no pledge of allegiance, no prayer or any of the other BS.

We go to school to learn skills that will help us in life. That’s it.

We are too diverse a culture to be pushing religious beliefs and political ideals on others.

Nix the prayer in school (though meditation and self reflecting could take its place) and push creativity and freedom to learn, explore, ask questions and not worry about test scores.

We should be learning for the sake of learning.

Guns aren’t the problem, Humans – and their gods are!


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You can Follow the Militant Hippi/Boston Paul on Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/BostonPaul
or
Twitter: https://twitter.com/MilitantHippi

You also might like to read:

What is a Friend?  https://bostonpaul.wordpress.com/2012/08/13/who-what-is-a-friend-really/

https://bostonpaul.wordpress.com/2015/12/04/your-prayers-aint-helping/

https://bostonpaul.wordpress.com/2015/11/18/i-was-talking-about-the-existence-of-god-creation-with-a-christian-recently/

https://bostonpaul.wordpress.com/2015/09/03/99-of-the-christians-i-know-are-hypocrites-heres-why/

Taiwanniversary Twenty One!

January 7, 2016.

Wow. Another year has just flown by.  So much life packed into 365 days…. and with this year being a leap year, with its 366 days, I’ll be setting out to accomplish much more – especially with that extra day!

This post started out as a New Year Blog Entry, but I was quite busy performing and before I knew it, today knocked and I realized it was the anniversary of the day I came to this Island – so I’ve blended my New Year Post with my Taiwanniversary Post.

I’ve jotted down my thoughts, hopes and yes, even a few fears for this year 2016.

I have also thought a lot about 2015 and the past in general. I thought about my family specifically my brothers and mother whom I have not seen in over 10 years (I haven’t left the Island for 10 years!), the birthdays, holidays and other special occasions I’ve missed.

I have thought about Friends who died this year..

https://bostonpaul.wordpress.com/2015/08/17/a-friend-a-legacy-your-life-matters/

But it has been a wonderful Journey with all the bumps and beauty that go with a Journey.

I pondered my 20 year Taiwanniversary and what’s been happening since last year on this day (you can pop over and read a nice light piece on how I ended up on this awesome island as I do not want to repeat myself):

https://bostonpaul.wordpress.com/2015/01/07/twenty-year-taiwanniversary-and-how-it-happened/

I am grateful for so many things.

So here I am and it is right around lunch time and the sun is out here in Taichung, Taiwan. The birds are chirping, my cat is playing with a small imaginary animal.  My banana trees are swaying in the soft breeze, my dog is sunning himself in the yard. I just washed all my socks and they are hanging on the line.

Life is indeed good.

As I was bopping around getting little tidbits done before I performed with my band at a New Year Celebration in the city, I pondered upon this past year. All of the new people I’ve met, the many musicians I’ve been working with, how I’ve pushed myself to be more creative, how I have challenged and continue to challenge myself and expand my horizons.  It’s been pretty awesome. I am satisfied with my life, have made wonderful relationships with awesome people from around the world…

Speaking of around the world…

I’ve grown dismayed at what I see happening around our planet. The melting of the polar ice caps; the polarization of the masses making an Us against Them environment; corporate welfare; money in politics; hypocrisy in government; climate change (and the idiots that deny it); the dumbing down of the Citizenry; a bias media owned only by a handful of corporations…  is Freedom going the way of Orwell’s 1984?

What can we do about it?

On a more personal level. I am watching closely both Taiwan and the USA as both countries are entering election years. This should be interesting.

The differences between Taiwan and the USA when it comes to voting are quite different.  Taiwan’s leaders win by popular vote while in the US they do not. In both countries there is money in politics… but it is much worse and exploited in the US.

Both countries are a bit volatile.

The US looks like it could have another Civil War in the coming years. It is so divided. Not the Land of The Free anymore.

Taiwan has an occupying party called the KMT. They fled to the Island in the late 40s after losing a civil war in China with the Communists. Though, the first elected president was Lee Denghui in 1996, he eventually left the KMT. The KMT then lost the election to the DPP 民主進步黨 (Democratic Progressive Party)
in 2000.

After what looked like a dubious coup that ousted their elected president Chen Shui Bien on charges the KMT has also been guilty of (bribery charges), the KMT was again voted in.

The current President Ma  馬英九 who was born in HongKong is a wishy-washy suck up to China. China ridiculously claims sovereignty over Taiwan and Ma has tried to negotiate deals with China that would hurt Taiwan.  The Taiwanese People are fed up and the KMT is most likely going to collapse which will put the DPP – who acknowledge Independence for Taiwan –  in power.

Get the popcorn out..this could get quite interesting on both sides of the world.
So here I am, enjoying a good life in Taiwan –  Twenty One Years of Awesome, while watching from afar the Fish Bowl that is the USA and wondering where this year will take us all.

My Mantra for this year…

*Help Build Strong Informed Communities as We The People can govern ourselves.
*Make Music… even if it’s just singing in the shower.
*Do something Artsy.
*Write down your Thoughts as stories, Poems, Reports and Essays.

*Eat Healthy.
*Exercise.
*Smile.
*DREAM!

Peace & Love Y’all

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Boston Paul in 1995

 
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You can Follow the Militant Hippi/Boston Paul on Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/BostonPaul
or
Twitter: https://twitter.com/MilitantHippi

You Might also like to read:

A few more Guidelines I’ve picked up as I forge through Life: https://bostonpaul.wordpress.com/2015/01/07/lifes-guidelines-2/

What is a Friend?  https://bostonpaul.wordpress.com/2012/08/13/who-what-is-a-friend-really/

Published in: on January 7, 2016 at 2:08 PM  Comments (1)  
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