The sheer photographic quality of Mike Clarke’s photo-blog makes me sick to my stomach with a special brand of envy usually reserved for those children on hot summer days, who can only watch as the other kids that have an allowance get to buy something when the ice cream man comes around. His photos make me feel like I’m insulting the institution of photography whenever I touch a camera, they’re that good.

It’s possible that I’m just jealous of his penchant for photographing people, which is something I’m not that great at, simply because I kind of find people boring. I tend to focus more on scenery and environs since my personal view is that that usually says more about the nature of people than looking at the people themselves. That having been said though, this dude makes me want to try and develop that area cause he’s finding some very interesting stuff there! Anyway, check it out, you’ll be glad you did.

I also came across this essay about the Japanese preoccupation with wrapping things. You may recall a while back I was bitching about the blatant waste of packaging in Japan. The essay at least slightly addressed the issue in suggesting that the act of unwrapping an object helps to complete the sense of ‘transfer of ownership’ and by unwrapping said object you are making it yours. I’m down with that as far as gifts and things are concerned, but why it matters with a box of fucking mini-donuts, I’ve yet to figure out.

The essay is a little dry and I haven’t had time to do more than browse through it yet, but it seems to be pretty interesting if you’re into the finer points of Japanese culture.

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