Archive for June, 2005

Istan-Rock

rockistanbul.jpgThe first one of a lot of summer-music festivals awaiting us – Rock Istanbul – ended yesterday. Well, the name is not very creative, just like the other ones we have before us: Rock the nations, rock republic, rock’n coke etc. Although all have the word “Rock” in the name, musicians and bands from various genres join these festivals.

Back to Rock Istanbul. I guess the target audience was especially those who had the big OSS exam on Sunday ( OSS is the university entrance test, which is a Turkish peculiarity). The festival was in Kilyos, app. 1.5 hours ride from Istanbul. The festival area was by the sea, with a moderate beach. Many preferred to take the shuttle buses which, by the way, really did not meet the needs and all buses were full. The bus I took yesterday was no exception and had an extra bonus: a couple started to fight during the journey; the guy’s t-shirt was all torn and the gal fainted and even that did not keep the bus driver from driving on.

What awaited us was a real rock concert. Megadeth came on stage after an hour of sound-check. Dave Mustaine seemed a bit depressed and distanced; but, all in all, the performance was great. Then, after about one and a half hours, Garbage was there. Shirley looked gorgeous with her mini skirt.

The festival was ideal for getting away from the chaos of the city; in between the concerts masses rushed to the beach to listen to the sweet melody of the waves. Now we have Rock Republic before us, which will take place in the woods, with birds singing all around the place. We all will have many chances to get away from the city and have some fresh air, thanks to the festivals.

World Tribunal on Iraq: Final Session in Istanbul…

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The final session of the World Tribunal on Iraq will be held at the Darphane-i Amire building of the Topkapi Palace in Istanbul between the 24th and the 27th of June…

Taking its cue from the Russell Tribunal of the late 1960s, the Tribunal is aimed at challenging the silence around the aggression against Iraq and seeking the truth about the war and occupation in Iraq, the legality of the war, the role of the United Nations, war crimes and the role of the media, as well as the destruction of the cultural sites and the environment…
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Renowned author and activist Arundhati Roy from India, will be the Spokesperson of the Jury of Conscience of the World Tribunal on Iraq…

“That from a long way off look like flies”…

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Garanti Platform Art Gallery in Beyoglu hosts an exhibition entitled “That from a long way off look like flies” until June 9th… The exhibition includes works by seven artists who will also participate in the 9th Istanbul Biennial…

Bulgarian artist Daniel Bozhkov’s work, “Darth Vader tries to clean the Black Sea with Brita Filter”, actually performed in the town of Burgas in 2000, was the one that especially attracted my attention…

The idea behind the exhibition, as I read in the documentation, seems to be “a statement of hope even in the knowledge of inevitable failure, with an environmental and psychological approach referencing systems of urban and rural ecology, rejuvenation, cleansing and redemption”…

Nargile Ceremony

nargile_arts.jpgThe recent boom of the waterpipe cafes in istanbul has made addicts of us all. Sooner or later, one is urged to visit one and choose from a variety of types.

A few years back, waterpipe used to be served at old, traditional coffee houses to the elderly people with tombeki, the genuine tobacco type. Now, it is served it with apple, strawberry, mocca etc. flavor in new fashioned coffeehouses, with hype music playing in the background. The only thing that remains is the importance of chatting with friends during the 1-2 hours of smoking ceremony. The duration of the nargile ceremony depends on the service of the house; the embers has to be refreshed every 30 minutes; when the coffee house is full, you have to wait for the service-guy to come along and feed your nargile with a new embers. I would recommend the Mat Rock Cafe at Taksim.

As for the flavors, my favorite is the one with apple flavor, which is milder in comparison to the others. Those who would like to experiment a bit could mix the cappucino and caramel flavored tobacco and have the bottle filled with milk instead of water. But as I mentioned, chatting is more important than flavor, when you have good company, you can forget about the flavor.

And, one last thing. A new album with songs for the nargile ceremony came out: Hava Narghile. Do not mind the funny cover, it goes well with the ceremony.

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