O noble and generous Cetacean, have you ever tasted Man?


most entries friendzonly, if you wanna read just holla. اهلا وسهلا

New zine! "All my friends are mountains"
It's been said that the Kurds have no friends but the mountains.

There may or mayn't be much in that, but any friend of the mountains is a friend of mine. (you know, if they're okay with it)

So I chased curiosity and solidarity over the plains of Turkey and in to the Zagros Mountains of Iraq, the one Dubya saw fit to pull from the burning wreckage for his own ends. The zine talks about animal rights, wildlife trade and hunting in Iraq; antispeciesism; the environmental destruction of the war; the aftermath of Saddam; the aid industry; the Antideutsche's crusades in the Middle East; sex work and the female prison system in Iraq and Kurdistan; the Kurdish Spring; underground media in Kurdistan, and why not to carry Kurdish bullet shells through Turkish airport security. It also includes an awesome interview with the folks of the Kurdish Anarchist Forum.

And there is a lot of gushing about mountains. Mesopotamia ho!

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48 A5 pages. You can buy it for three bucks plus the cost of stamps on Etsy here. If three bucks is too much, write me and we can figure something out. If you're feeling well generous, you're welcome to send whatever amount works to projectbridget@hotmail.com with pay-friend Thing. As you might've noticed I often like using my zines to raise ca$h for various orgs, but in this case (as I expand on in the zine!) there's a lot of head-pounding deliberation over where would be a good place to send money raised... so if I arrive at a good answer I'll let you know – otherwise it'll go towards mine and Sebastian's impending Aotearoa mountain adventures :)

(no subject)
in cairo we went to a village of copts. there is this Thing that was afoot there for a long time, where the garbage collectors, many of whom are copts, were recycling 80% of all cairo's material - through old-fashioned sifting. when mubarak privatised the waste disposal services egypt's recycling rate got a lot less impressive. anyway, some of them still do it, as a means of income. when we drove in i was overcome with self-loathing for being there - it looked like the most hardcore poverty i'd ever seen. people were literally living in garbage. encased in the middle of the shit is a huge church complex, with two churches carved into mountains - one open-air, the other in a giant cave. beautiful & intricate, enormous statues are carved into the rock face. a pristine oasis amongst the shit.

anyway, after we'd walked outside into the shit, we looked up & began to realise that the apartments were actually nice enough - not posh, but comfortable. the children were clean, & that people were smiling at us.

(no subject)
When I want to cheer myself up, I head for Ferdousi Street, where Mr. Ferdousi sells Persian carpets.

Mr. Ferdousi, who has passed all his life in the familiar intercourse of art and beauty, looks upon the surrounding reality as if it were a B-film in a cheap, unswept cinema. It is all a question of taste, he tells me: The most important thing, sir, is to have taste. The world would look far different if a few more people had a drop more taste. In all horrors (for he does call them horrors), like lying, treachery, theft, and informing, he distinguishes a common denominator - such things are done by people with no taste. He believes that the nation will survive everything and that beauty is indestructible.

You must remember, he tells me as he unfolds another carpet (he knows I am not going to buy it, but he would like me to enjoy the sight of it), that what has made it possible for the Persians to remain themselves over two and a half millennia, what has made it possible for us to remain ourselves in spite of so many wars, invasions, and occupations, is our spiritual, not our meterial, strength - our poetry, and not our technology; our religion, and not our factories. What have we given the world? We have given poetry, the minature, and carpets. As you can see, these are all useless things from the productive viewpoint. But is is through such things that we have expressed our true selves. We have given the world this miraculous, unique uselessness. What we have given the world has not made life any easier, only adorned it - if such a distinction makes any sense.

To us a carpet, for example, is a vital necessity. You spread a carpet on a wretched, parched desert, lie down on it, and feel you are lying in a green meadow. Yes, our carpets remind us of meadows in flower. You see before you flowers, you see a garden, a pool, a fountain. Peacocks are sauntering among the shrubs. And carpets are things that last - a good carpet will retain its colour for centuries. In this way, living in a bare, monotonous desert, you seem to be living in an eternal garden from which neither colour nor freshness ever fades. Then you can continue imagining the frangrence of the garden, you can listen to the murmur of the stream and the song of the birds. And then you feel whole, you feel eminent, you are near paradise, you are a poet.

Veganistan: the zine
Veganistan is a zine of Middle East & Maghrebi vegan recipes. It's also an attempt to smash popular misconceptions that you can’t be a healthy, happy, belly-rubbin vegan in the Mid East. Follow a kaleidescopic 40 page journey through soups, dips, breads, spice blends, salads, falafels, pastries, grains, stuffed stuff & sweet things & feast til ya can't stands no more.

All the ca$h raised from the zine goes to Vafa Animal Shelter in Hashtgerd, Iran. "Vafa" means "loyalty" in Farsi. The shelter was founded in 2003 by Fatemeh Motamedi, who donated her own land and funds to see the shelter’s creation. Today Vafa’s volunteers care for over 400 dogs & depend on donations to keep the project running. You can find out more about it here, & keep an eye out for the soon to exist non-recipe zine All My Friends Are Mountains, where I interview them :)

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I'm putting the suggested price for the zine at two bucks fifty ($2.50). But if you feel super keen on Vafa & the work they are doing, you are welcome to pay however much you feel good about paying for the zine, because ALL money raised, aside from printing costs, from it goes to the organisation. I copy the zine at a local printing collective, so each zine costs approximately 0.20c to make - so whether you want to pay more, or can only afford 2.50, the vast majority goes to Vafa. If 2.50 is too expensive for you too, that's OK! If fifty cents is what you can afford, of course that's fine too.

If you're in Europe, postage is $2.50, & if you're in the Americas, Oceania, Asia-Pacific, the Mid East, or anywhere else, postage is $4.50. Sorry that there is no global mailing collective to keep costs lower on that. :)
Edit: I had to bump the postage costs up 'cause I went to the post office to mail the first batch & realised I undercharged everyone. Now it's correct. Sorry! :)

My Paypal thing is projectbridget@hotmail.com. If you don't have one, message me (projectbridget@gmail.com) & we can figure something else out.

Cheers! Happy eating.

(no subject)
not that anyone's liable to contact me through here ever, but in case of ¡¡eljay emergency!! you can find me at:

1. not the internet
2. the arctic circle

for the next couple of weeks

(no subject)
Study the drawings below. Devise an economical set of binary semantic components that would allow us to distinguish each object from all the others. Give the componential analysis for each object, according to your system. There are several possible solutions.

(no subject)
sneakers aren't punk
it's almost a year to the day since i crossed the border from israel into egypt. it was maybe today, last year, that i got the call from my ray ban-clad lawyer that the supreme court had passed the decision we all knew was coming since my clandestine journeys back to the west bank became less so (thanks ha'aretz). one week to get out.

i never lived a week like that one. how do you say goodbye to a place like that forever?

i remember every second of the five-hour bus ride from jerusalem to eilat. i could have hitched, but i was too afraid of my last hours in the country spent stuck in a car with a kahanist or something. the last days simply fell through my hands like water, evaporating in the rapidly-approaching summer heat.

there were no seats on the bus; i sat in the stairwell. i had seen the negev only near gaza, where soft dunes were now blanketed in grass, & jewish national fund tree-planting initiatives. out east, the moonscape clawed its way out of the sand on either side of the long, black road. the mountains glowed an impossible red. more than anything, i wanted to get out of the bus & follow the line of date palms up in to the crags.

the bus stopped sometimes at random junctures in the road, where soldiers would climb out of the sand & hop onto the bus, sinking into the empty seat that appeared for them. a bronzed woman climbed off at a kibbutz & disappeared into the shimmering heat.

people say eilat is the weirdest place in israel. blood pounding, i fixed my eyes on the road to the border. i can't explain what i felt.

some days the longing is all but acute.

(no subject)


my linguistics textbook tells me that:

Some languages have no native words to mean 'sexual intercourse' but do borrow such words from neighbouring people. Other languages have many words for this common and universal act, most of which are taboo.

i'm deadly curious, what languages are we talking about here that have no native word for sex?

(no subject)


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