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Pope Francis I – Relax

Is it just me, or did everyone else think this when they heard the announcement of Pope Francis I [^] this morning?

Pope Frankie Says Relax T-Shirt

Pope Frankie Says Relax T-Shirt

Onset of Christmas Delayed?

A guerrilla campaign to delay the early outbreak of Christmas [^] has started in Leeds, England.

Oxfam Christmas Card

Four shops have been warned that they face having their locks superglued if they display Christmas card before 1st November. One charity shop in the area, mental health group “Mind”, has already had it’s locks glued [^]. The evocatively named “Campaign for the Containment of Xmas” have claimed responsibility.

There is no mention of whether Contain Christmas campaign is likely to go national or even international.

CannibalRabbit appreciates that someone is willing to provoke some discussion about the selling of Christmas merchandise so early in the year. We do not, however,  condone the threat of criminal damage. We also have to point out that the campaign could be construed as being counterproductive; we now have the national newspapers publishing “Christmas” stories in August.

The simplest answer to this problem is: Just say “No” to Christmas before late November.

Whacked-Out Wallabies

The BBC has a story about wallabies causing crop circles [^] in Tasmania’s opium poppy fields. Apparently the wallabies get into the fields and sample the produce. Under the influence they then bounce around in circles until they crash – result, natural crop circles.

Tasmania Poppy Field - Scottsdale Jan 1998

Northern Tasmania is one of the few places in world that poppies are legally-grown, with Australia producing around half of the world’s total output. The highly regulated opium poppies are used in the commercial production of codeine and morphine [^].

The above photo is a poppy field waiting to be harvested, taken near Scottsdale [^] during the CannibalRabbits Tour of Tasmania in January 1998. Yes, there is just a a normal farm fence, about waist-high, separating the field from the road – and a scary “Keep Out” sign!

Tiananmen Square

This week marked the 20th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square uprising over democratic reforms in Beijing on 5th June, 1989.

NYT-Tiananmen Front Page

So effective has been the suppression of the events in Tiananmen Square even 20 years on this image is still not widely recognised by young people in China. Indeed China has cracked down to ensure that the anniversary is not commemorated, banning foreign reporters from the Square, and searching locals entering in (The Age – US urges inquiry [^]) to prevent any demonstrations.

The Lens, the photojournalism blog of the New York Times, has posted “Behind the Scenes: Tank Man of Tiananmen [^]”. It shows four photos from different viewpoints of a lone man facing a column of tanks. The post also gives the photographers the opportunity to report the event leading up to this moment, and the risks that they took to get the images out of China to the rest of the world in the pre-Internet age.

Interestingly, a photographer, Terril Jones, has come forward with “A New Angle on History [^]”. This a previously unseen view of the Tank Man, the only image taken from street level. Mr Jones did not realise until he had returned to Japan what he had managed to capture, and missed the opportunity to have the photo published. Thankfully, an appropriate moment has now arrived.

In “Classic Photo Redux” we posted a copy of Mike Stimpson’s Lego recreation of the NY Times front page photo. Anything that keeps the atrocities of two decades ago in everyone’s minds needs to be commended. Democratic reform in the world’s third largest economy still hasn’t happened.

Toilet Paper Canned

This is one of those story’s that you wouldn’t believe unless it came from a good source. The ABC, Australia’s national broadcaster, has run a story about a school that has pulled the toilet paper [^] out of the toilet blocks.

Magda Sorbent Fast Forward

The school in question is Glossop High School’s middle campus, in South Australia’s Riverland. Apparently the decision is a temporary response to a spate of vandalism. “Dunny dockets” are still available on request from members of staff, but who would want to ask?.

This reminds me of the series of skits on the comedy show Fast Forward (click on photo above for the skit on youtube) by Magda Szubanski that parodied a Sorbent Toilet Paper ad. The parodies were so successful that the comedienne ended-up starring in her own TV ad for Sorbent [^].