Instead of resorting to Silly Season Stories, this Lamma-zine will be
taking a break. We'll be flying off to Switzerland from July 29 till Aug 9
for my mum's funeral.
This site will continue to run normally and the moderators will manage the
forums. I might have a look at my own emails occasionally, or not...
I definitely won't
miss the heat and humidity of our HK summer this year...
Suzie Wonton - Lamma Newbie
(Photos chosen by Suzie from earlier Lamma-zine stories,
except Munch's "The Scream", courtesy of Yahoo Images)
I got off the ferry, dragging my
ten-ton suitcase behind me. Its shitty plastic wheels
protested the load. I tried to look nonchalant, like I knew
what I was doing, where I was going, even though I
inadvertently kept pulling my suitcase up onto the back of
my flip flop and nearly tripping myself. By the time I got
as far as the Island Bar, my acute self-consciousness had
reached a deafening pitch. It was Friday night and the crowd
of jolly and inebriated expats was spilling out into the
Suddenly I was 13 again, and not in a
good way. I was the new kid in school, the geek, acutely
aware that I had arrived on someone else's turf. They were
the cool, popular kids who had all the fun; me, the dork on
the outside of life, awkwardly stumbling my way past, always
excluded from the hip and the happenin'. As I slinked
through the revelers, Anne Lamott's Radio K-FUCK played loud
and clear in my head:
"Lookie here, at the latest loser to
come to Lamma."
"What a wannabe."
"Don't even think about stopping for a
drink here. You'll never fit in."
"Keep walkin', sister!"
Such was the gauntlet of imaginary
tormentors broadcasting their menacing messages in my head.
I allowed myself to exhale once I made
it as far as the public toilets. My relief was short-lived.
The gauntlet resumed, along with my anxiety, at the next
seafood place, and lasted all the way down Main Street, past
the Banyan Café, reaching particular crescendo by the
Fountainhead and then again in front of Spicy Island --
something to do, I suppose, with what I perceived as
mocking, drunken stares.
all of a sudden was I experiencing life as if I were the
wretched character in Munch's painting 'The Scream'? Fresh
out of Xanax, I purchased a six-pack of beer as a sorry
substitute and proceeded to navigate the ratty maze that
would lead to my home for the next six weeks.
The next day I emerged from my cocoon
to find life beautiful and sunny and shiny like a new toy. I
wandered into the village and was soon disabused of my
intimidating notions from the night before. Were my
delusions acting up again, or was there indeed a dark side
to Lammatopia, a raw, Rabelaisian underbelly that peered out
from time to time from beneath Lamma's flirtatious skirts?
No mind, it was
a beautiful day. The village of Yung Shue Wan exuded
loveliness and warmth and character. It struck me as a
unique, almost surreal combination of elements I'm quite
sure doesn't exist anywhere else on the planet - a
backstreet, Chinatown version of a Katmandu - Santa Monica
3rd Street hybrid, French Riviera-esque in the way its cafes
cater to canines along with their owners.
island's dogs are far more appealing than their Cote d'Azur
counterparts. Instead of purebred poodles, each one is a
'roll 'o the dice' genetic crapshoot; think "Lobert" (see
left). Juxtaposed against their gritty and rough appearance,
I observed a striking civility and tenderness between the
noble canines as they passed each other on the street,
greeting one another with a delicate sniff and an elegant
wag. I suspected (and hoped) Lammatopian quadrupeds were representative of
the island's bipeds, a gritty yet gracious breed.
I took my seat in a Main
Street café, ordered a drink, and stared at the crop of
passers-by freshly arrived off the ferry. It had been less
than 24 hours, and already I had adopted at least one of the
local tribal customs: I was already a full-fledged member of
the Yung Shue Wan welcome gauntlet.
Tune in again for the next
installment of "Escape to Lammatopia".
Anonymous_Guy - Master Wildlife Photographer:
a message in the
Bee/wasp nest forum to leave your good wishes after
reading this story
D200 w/Nikkor VR 70-200mm F/2.8 G;
Exposure Mode: Aperture Priority
Metering Mode: Spot
1/60 sec - F/2.8
Exposure Comp.: -0.3 EV
Sensitivity: ISO 200
Optimize Image: Custom
White Balance: Auto
AF Mode: AF-C
Flash Sync Mode: Front Curtain
Auto Flash Mode: Built-in TTL
Auto Flash Comp: -2.3 EV
Was clearing some under-growth in the garden
& came across this Killer Wasp Nest... except I didn't know
Before I realised what had happened, at
least half a dozen had attacked the top of my head....... as
I turned and ran headlong downhill, pulling them out of my
hair, I stumbled on a root and plummeted into the base of a
tree, twisting my ankle for good measure. Gathering myself I
ran for the house still tugging my attackers away from my
scalp. I reached the house & plunged my heads under the
shower to get the last of them out.
I'm sitting here now with what seem like a
hundred inter-connecting golf ball size lumps on my head,
although in reality is probably only half a dozen or so. My
head is throbbing , my neck has stiffened up from the
poison, and my ankle is the size of a beach ball.
Anyway, went back & found the nest, but
couldn't get a clear shot...... so needed to do a bit of
gardening to get a better shot.
Found that every time I cleared a little foliage, the wasps
would all troop out to check for intruders. Sending out
occasional sorties in my direction.
I was a little squeamish by this time..... so this is about
the best shot I could get, given the circumstances.... but I
think portrays a little of their menace.
Moral of the
story... nature photographers should wear tin hats.
Nick the Bookman - Official Court Music Reviewer
(Photos by Mediahore)
Saturday evening (July 21, '07) and I've got to admit
I'm a wee bit knackered after some 36 hours of
relentless musical appreciation with a side order of
work. However, Red Star Rising are back at the Wanch (on
a double bill with Helter Skelter) and Steve has
promised new songs and experimentation. I semi-snore my
way to Central, amble into The Wanch and find about 18
people awaiting tonight's musical menu. Zoe's there.
So is Liz, a former Lammaite, who works at the SCiMPy with
Steve. Maybe hordes of salivating RSR-connoisseurs will
trample down the doors at an(zzzz...)y moment, but
somehow I doubt it.
The previous gig was something special
and hopefully this will be as well as RSR have a
possible pending regional tour. The set list appears to
be more or less the same as last time. John Palmer
wanders in. He's not filming tonight but takes time to
introduce "the hottest band in HK - no Asia. Red Star
Rising!" The eponymous opening track is augmented with a
bass-synth drone that sort of reminds me of "Tom Sawyer"
by Rush. Steve does his "fretwanking" bits over the top.
Hugh is nicely minimal on drums, but Alex appears to
have some trouble with his bass.
I've missed "When Worlds Collide" and Slow Blues" and
Steve is moaning about " a nasty bit of work, don't meet
him" as a prelude to "The Man From Ma On Shan" which is
handled with splenetic glee. Jagged riffs punctuate "$
Arcade" which is "a cross between Disney and Wanchai".
The band are hitting their groove, humming along
nice(zzzz...)ly. I'm zoning in and out (just checking my
eyelids for holes) and (zzzz...
...zzzz) Oops, I've missed the end of
the first set which comprised "Fade To Black", a new
number "See Your Face" (which I can still look forward
to hearing!) and "Finishing Line". I think I've got
enough gas in the tank to get through the rest of the
show. The audience has grown to about 25 people who are
about to experience something special.
The opening tune is new. It's called
"Shuffle" and Steve freaks everyone out (including his
bandmates) by playing a sort of doo-wop barbershop
quartet voice sample through his Roland synthesiser.
He's playing guitar and voices are coming out! People
shaking their heads as if to hear better and looking to
see where the Munchkins are stashed.
second tune is also new. "Red Claw" is heavy grunge
bombast with a 5-bar repeating cycle. It's based on "a
true story" which no one seems to get. Perhaps next
time. The 3rd number is called "Megaphone Man" (without
the megaphone) and is rough-n-ready rock-n-roll.
Definitely some early Ted Nugent/Amboy Dukes in the
riffing. Koya, and the rest of Helter Skelter, have
arrived and are listening with approval on the pavement.
(There was room inside guys, and the bar is closer -
though the nearby 7-11 is cheaper!) The major hits
unfold in quick succession.
"Last Ferry To Lamma" keeps getting
better with age (unlike the last ferry to Lamma which
always has wet floors and the crap plastic bucket seats
that no one can sleep comfortably on. Perhaps that's the
idea. No Slumberland Sealeyrite service at night. No one
would go home) The band are going from strength to
strength and "Escalator Girls" is a whirling, stomping
rush and a fine companion piece to my favourite song
Alas, this version doesn't scale the
Olympian heights of the previous Wanch gig. Steve says
later he was absorbed in watching the drum-n-bass
interplay between Hugh and Alex to really concentrate on
his backward guitar solo. The final track is a fiery
"Walking With The Devil" a romperstomper ripsnorting
rampage with Steve hollering "Don't ever walk with the
devil" at the climax. I'm awake now, yes Sirree Bob!
Chatting afterwards, Steve hints he may
start dropping some of the blues numbers in future sets
as the band are concentrating on writing and recording
original material. That first CD is starting to sound
like it will be something special when it's done.
Speaking of which, I'm do(zzzz...)ne now too. See ya
at The Next Gig!
Graham Marsh - Tony's son (see also the
RIP, Tony Marsh forum)
(Photos by Graham Marsh)
Tony Marsh on his
I would like to thank everyone who has called, or sent
emails and cards expressing their condolences and support.
If I have not yet replied to you, I will try to do so in due
The funeral arrangements
are as follows:
402, Universal Funeral Parlour (in Cantonese: "Sai Gai"), 10
Cheong Hang Rd, Hung Hom, Kowloon Tel. 23624331.
to get there: (maps)
building is North of the KCR station in Hung Hom near PolyU.
See the attached ufp map below - on foot, follow the green
line. When looking towards the building from KCR station or
cross-harbour tunnel bus area, there is a huge Nikon sign,
just head in that direction. As you enter the main entrance
of the funeral parlour, turn left and take the lifts to 4/F.
Sunday 29th July, from 4:30pm onwards. We intend to do a
eulogy at around 5pm so please try to arrive before then.
refreshments will be provided.
grandchildren Anton (11) and Nathan (7) will be there; if
you wish to bring children you are welcome to do so.
expect to stay until around 6:30pm at the latest.
Important: Please would you let us know if you are coming
(and how many).
Also, some close friends and colleagues may wish to say a
few words, please also let us know if you would like to do
believe an announcement of Tony's passing is already posted
in the Spicy Island Indian restaurant.
After the funeral:
The cremation will be
held at Cape Collinson Crematorium on Monday 30th July
See this CCC map - it should be a short ride
from Chai Wan MTR station (upper right) to the
crematorium (lower left). You are welcome to attend.
The following weekend:
We intend to have a
gathering/ wake/party(!) on Sunday 5th August at Tony's
family's house in Pak Kok Village, Lamma Island -
more information on that
Tel: 9450 1504 (mobile);
2982 2899 (home); 9836 8584 (Julie)
One way or another, we've had two
depressing death notices in as many weeks. The first was the
venerable media figure, David Kerr, followed soon afterwards by
retired HKU academic and longtime Lammaite, Tony Marsh. Each in
his own way was a respected pillar of the island community,
espousing and championing populist concerns and causes like
ferry fare/timetables, clinic facilities and excesses of
The good news is that Tony, who
opted to return to Hong Kong after fleeing to Britain shortly
before the 1997 handover, will be survived by two generations of
his clan, represented by his son Graham, and two grandsons who
can be counted upon to keep the Marsh family flag flying in
A big hurrah to that and our
collective thanks for the fond memories we associate with the
incomparable Tony M.
Graham Marsh - Tony's son (see also the
RIP, Tony Marsh forum):
I'd like to thank
Lamma-Gung for posting the above information, and the kind
messages. If Lamma-Gung could link to this thread from the main
page I would be most grateful. And thanks also to my mum Cherry
for helping with the obituary below:
My father was born in
Burnley, Lancashire, UK, in 1936, the son of a chemical engineer
and a tailoress. His schooldays were not particularly happy ones
and although he obtained a place in a reputable Grammar School,
he spectacularly underachieved, leaving with only two O-level
passes. I mention this because, ironically, he was later to
enter the field of education, spending a great deal of time in
schools and higher learning establishments.
National Service still
being compulsory, he served in the Royal Air Force as a Radar
Operator. It was during this time that he decided to study in
earnest and managed to pass three A-level exams in one year
rather than the normal two.
As a young boy, he had
attended elocution lessons, leading to an enduring love of
literature, especially poetry. That, together with a natural
acting ability, led to an application for a place at RADA, the
Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. Although he passed the audition,
he did not take up the place as he felt uncomfortable in the
So it was that he instead
took an honours degree course in Botany at Leicester University,
followed by a Post Graduate Cert. in Education course. His
teaching career spanned some 30 years, the longest period of
which was as a lecturer in Biology Education at the University
of Hong Kong. This post brought him into contact with local
teachers and the HK Examination Authority as well as providing
opportunities for consultancy assignments in mainland China. In
addition he was the author of several books and papers.
Outside his work
commitments, he contributed to the work of the HK Family
Planning Association (FPA), the HK Youth Hostels Association (YHA),
and the HK Red Cross, among others. With regard to the YHA, he
was instrumental in securing the first youth hostel at Ngong
Ping on Lantau Island. For the Red Cross, he organised blood
donation sessions at the family's apartment in Pokfulam, where
he lived in University quarters since arriving in HK in 1972
until moving to Lamma Island in 1977.
Tony and his family lived
in Po Wah Yuen from 1977 until his return to UK in 1986. In the
early years, there was no mains water supply. Water was pumped
to the houses from local supplies and was prone to running out
in dry weather. He kept a large number of water barrels at the
back of the house to cover for these occasions, and he was known
to rig up various contraptions in an attempt to catch rainwater!
The last ferry from Central was 10:30pm and it took 45 minutes.
HYF, noodle soup, beer was available, no air-con.
After returning to the UK
in 1986, Tony could not resist an assignment or two back in Hong
Kong until finally retirement beckoned and he returned to the UK
to focus on a lengthy restoration project of a listed property.
Recently, he completed the text of a booklet about the history
of this building which he has submitted for publication.
He was an avid collector
of many things, especially early scientific texts and
instruments. Many of these items were obtained in the Hollywood
Road area of HK. He had an eye for items which were being sold
cheaply but, with some loving care and repair work, turned out
beautifully and were actually quite valuable. He was very
skilled in the area of home decoration and repairs, taking a
perfectionist approach to most jobs. This meant that tasks took
a long time to finish but looked great and lasted longer once
the job was done.
He had travelled
extensively around the world in the 70's and 80's with his
family. In his spare time he enjoyed walking, music, and
It is just over two years
that he returned to HK to live again on Lamma, in the top-floor
flat of his son's home in Pak Kok Tsuen. He immediately settled
back in to Lamma life, involving himself with local people and
in local activities, and procuring a property with renovation
prospects in Tai Ping Tsuen.
He is survived by former wife Cherry, son
Graham, daughter-in-law Julie, and grandchildren Anton (11) and
Nathan (7). We will miss him very much.
Rest In Peace, Granddad!
Lamma's master bird-o-grapher,
HarryLi, has gone one better with his bird photos, animating them!
See below and click here for more of his still photos in the
Lamma's top 10 birds forum.
Pond Heron (not shot on Lamma) - Immature White-breasted Waterhen (Lamma)
The anniversary yesterday created almost no feedback at all, as is usual
with most stories on this website. Like in print, people like to read but
not to become active and respond to anything they read, except when they're
upset about something and would like to rant about it, firing off a
Letter/Email to the Editor.
I mentioned this in a simple, short message in the
5th Anniversary forum, that I was frustrated about the
usual, almost total lack of any feedback, good or bad. My message created
quite a bit of feedback, finally!
toddy - Lamma Newbie (see her forum avatar below):
HAVE UPSET THE GUNG!!!!
Lamma dwellers, we have upset Lamma-Gung
with our sloth and apathy (see the Lamma-zine thread). Let
us take some time to write in to celebrate the 5th
anniversary of Lamma.com.hk, and to show some appreciation
for his five years of ass-busting labour.
I'm not recommending that you do this, Herr Gung, but I bet
you if you took the website down for 48 hours, you would
hear so much whining about it, that you'd be assured of the
centrality of the über-blog to the life of the Lammanese.
As depraved humans suffering from a
collective entitlement complex, we have come to take the
website for granted, and tend only to show signs of life
when it is taken from us. Please forgive us for our
Now c'mon you schlepps, write in, or face
the Dark Side of the Gung!
Nancy - The Frog Lady
Looking through Lamma.com.hk before moving
to Hong Kong was the thing that convinced us that we should
live on Lamma Island. I am so thankful to be living here in
this community rather than trying to scrape together friends
in a high-rise somewhere.
L-G, this is a great resource and "place" to
come together and many of us appreciate it. Thanks.
Steady on L-G dear chap, I only just saw the
You do a great job of running this forum and
magazine, and most folk on our fair isle have little idea
what a grim and thankless task such a job can be. But some
of us do know, (and I count myself among that number) - and
5 years is a real achievement.
The trick now is to pass your wisdom on to
an apprentice so that you can put your feet up and
contemplate the next adventure. I'll be a Lamma freelancer
again soon, and will look forward to discussing the oddities
of island life when we meet after my summer hols...
Official Court Poet of Lamma.com.hk (newly appointed)
to Lamma the Gung
(To the tune, again, of Bonny Dundee)
For five weary years he's managed the queers
Who post to this network after too many beers
He's put up with Spam, he takes it with jam
And this is an ode to Lamma the Gung.
Come fill up my cup
Come fill up my can
Come fill up his servers with your Nigerian spam
He works night and day so our song we can sung
Three cheers and a tiger for Lamma the Gung!
We have sexy cool avatars from grannies in Blighty
We have Tjungaryi and Nobby almighty
We can read our Spinoza and ask, "says he wot"
"I can't understand bugger all this Yank matelot!"
Come fill up my cup
Come fill up my can
Come clog all his servers with pictures of bugs
He works night and day so the unseen is sun
Three cheers and a tiger for Lamma the Gung!
And if it ever goes permanently down
And you type www.lamma dot com
And get a DNS error or blue screen of death
You will miss the hard work of Lamma the Gung!
O, come fill up my cup
Come fill up my can
Come blast out his servers with Nigerian spam
He'll just keep on working to keep us *au fait*
With what the hell happens when we shite where we ate!
Wonderer - Lamma Newbie:
for one greatly appreciate your efforts.
You deserve to make, and I hope
you are making, a decent living for you and your wife from this
site [Not yet at all, but who's counting - Editor L-G].
Your impassioned commitment to
showing sentient beings across the universe that civilized life
forms can exist in relative harmony with nature on a small
island off a concrete jungle is exemplary, and convinced me to
try out life in your little slice of paradise next month.
Having been fully informed thanks
to this mountain of information, almost all of which I've
already read with interest, I feel confident that Lamma is a
place where life will taste good for me, and I expect that will
apply to many other readers from across the cosmos.
Given that it wouldn't be a bad
thing to see your population swell by a few thousand new souls,
to boost the vibrancy and diversity of your community, the fact
that this site has this enticing effect towards outsiders must
be deemed the ultimate accolade for your tireless efforts.
Here's to the next 5 years, and I
for one have no doubt that, come 2012, this community will be
thriving both online and off as more enlightened beings,
empowered by the Internet, dare to deviate from the mainstream
and discover that human beings can only find true happiness when
they merge with and cherish the natural world, not when they
isolate themselves from it and despoil it.
Thank you for opening up a
(1024x768-pixel) window onto a better world.
Click above for the forum. Let us know your thoughts about this
major, momentous, monumental milestone in Lamma's history! Or not?
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This might happen to you or has happened to you already:
A thunderstorm surprising you at night and a power surge taking out your PC,
TV, home theatre system. Fuses inside good power bars might protect your
electrical equipment from some of the rare power surges. But what about your
Broadband line where a power surge could literally fry your modem, router,
LAN card, even your motherboard.
happened to me a few weeks ago for the very first time in 6 years on Lamma,
during an unexpected nightly
thunderstorm, when I hadn't unplugged my Broadband modem (because of a
backup download of a client's entire photo galleries website in Europe that
took half the night). After a
quick modem replacement by PCCW, we still couldn't connect to the Internet. As I
need to be online for most of my work and business, not just this website,
downtime literally means lost income.
A visit from my computer guy after the Internet-less weekend revealed
that I had to get a new LAN router and a new LAN card as well,
see former story.
Three devices damaged with one single power surge through the Broadband
line. Fortunately, the very expensive motherboard survived even though the
fried LAN card was a part of it.
I looked for options to prevent this in the future and got this nifty,
high-tech power bar below, the
Belkin SurgeMaster Surge Protector. It's not just protecting from power surges, but
also electrical surges, spikes and "harmful electrical imbalances" (sounds
nasty!!) through your phone and Broadband lines, your LAN
cables and even your TV antennae, an infrequent but expensive problem during
thunderstorms. It's kind of luxurious at several hundred bucks but who else
has got a power bar, eh, SurgeMaster Surge Protector with:
Differential Toroidal Coils and High-Frequency Capacitors
300V Oversized Metal Oxide Varistors (MOVs)
Gold-Plated Aerial Cable Connections
Sidactors, Ceramic Arresters and an Impact-Resistant ABS Case
Able to resist 3,240 Joules and a Maximum Spike Current of 90,000 AMPS
Yes, I admit to being a nerd sometimes, and proud of it! Old habits die hard
and as a former "Regional IT/Telecom Manager - Asia" I still get seduced by
Click on the illustration below for more details. $560 from
Andy the "All-round IT consultant on Lamma", cheaper than another
unprotected lightning strike...
And if it fails anyway, they promise a
"Connected Equipment Warranty - Lifetime Product Warranty" of HK$50,000 in
cash! Who could resist such an offer? Not me!
While we were upgrading my home office setup, I got this monster copper
contraption below. Andy glued it on top of my Intel Core 2 Duo CPU, after
gutting my quite new PC. It's basically a heat sink, removing excess
heat from the PC's brain, replacing two of the very strong and noisy fans
that made my PC sound like an aircon before. All quiet now, aaaaah! My PC's
got a cool brain now and so do I. I can think freely now, coming up with
more silly, irreverent and inconsequential stories like this one...
Spinoza1112 - His reaction to the recent infestation of Yung
Shue Wan by a swarm of NOW
is also the first-ever Lamma-zine story with ten annotations.
Click on the (number) to read them. Click here for the
forum about this topic.
confirmed that the NOW broadband offer does not include BBC
or Cartoon channel, only lame-ass CNN, Star World, HBO, an
expense of spirit in a waste of shame
(1) unredeemed by The
Sopranos and a few other decent shows which I can buy later
on DVD. It also includes two Chinese channels, one of which
is apparently nothing but Jackie Chan boom boom kung fu
fighting and the other probably for the old folks, with Guan
Yin weeping under the sea. That's cool, but not enough.
"You know, I don't think there's any such
thing as TV" - Laurie Anderson
"'See if there's anything good on...'. 'Why
bother?'" - Robert Crumb, "Plunge into the Depths of
Despair!", circa 1970
Seriously...I have been ruminating of late
of the temporal and spatial phenomenology of television but
not being able, yet, to make it through Husserl's Logical
Investigations (hi Robert!) I may yet do naught more than
reinvent a wheel.
The spatial phenomenology of TV was noted by
me when TV entered my world as a lad. Yes, there are people
amongst us who remember a time before TV. Sure, Britain had
TV as early as 1939, but "the Telly" came as a sociocultural
institution to Britain after it came to my land in 1954, and
my South African chums tell me that they had no TV as late
as 1975, the *apartheid* government not wanting the homeys
to Get Ideas from American TV shows such as The Jeffersons,
where egregious Yank blackfellows might talk back to whites.
In TV, we learn to bracket out an ovoid and
reduce it to a rectangle. No clever-devil Yankee has
successfully created a TV with an eye-shaped ovoid such that
this could fill our eye and become the reality, meaning that
our dismissal of our lifeworld (*Lebenswelt*
(2) and a tip of the
hat to my German friends) is something we rehearse
If as I think Husserl saw, emotional and
cognitive cannot be disambiguated, then in watching TV we
are continually practicing the act of tuning out and
dismissal of part of lived reality.
(Do I reinvent the wheel? Did American
anti-TV pundit Jerry Mander say this in the 1970s?)
Certainly, Modern Life is replete with what
may be isomorphs of the act of tuning out. "Son, I would
like to talk to you about the Playboy magazine I found in
your room, and to give you advice about the peoplehood of
the women therein, and also borrow it too". "Aw gee Dad I'm
"Honey, me Bunny, I need to talk about Us."
"Why certainly, Darling Dora, my Mouse...wait a
minute...wait a minute...pass it, pass it to Beckham you
bloody handless git...aw haw hey we're the wee boys!"
"Ah'm not interested in the Blix team's
investigation. Just tell me if we can put this turkey over
and go to war against Iraq. Cut to da chase."
These are isomorphs of the spatial act. The
temporal tuning occurs when we learn (cf Foucault so I don't
have to) to structure our time into work and leisure
We find the leisure segment further
subdivided insofar as we retain an interest in High culture,
whether by High culture you mean *Alles schön und gut*
(4) e.g. that which is
Improving, or getting High.
Thus, culture "vultures" of my acquaintance
find that after watching BBC Shakespeare they want madder
music and stronger wine, and switch over to the latest
Reality show, even as a Russian count of the 19th century
might start his evening at the ballet, fall to studying
thighs and glimpses of Bolshoi buttocks, and end his evening
for this reason amongst Cossacks and Gypsies who steal his
Count Tolstoy may have seen how "the
evolution of productive relations" in Tsarist Russia, in
increasing the smorgasbord of Choices available to the
aristocratic man about town or *haute* bourgeois, had
unstructured the leisure of his class so as to create a
spiritual crisis (5).
The ceremony of innocence is drowned
(6): we're "distracted
from distraction by distraction"
(7). 32, 64, 128, 256,
512 and 1,024 cable channels and we're basically in the same
boat as the American couple of 1970, who could find "nothing
good on" in Chicago of that year, even though they had
American Choice of ABC, NBC, CBS, WGN (the local station
with the Cubs) and Channel Eleven educational programming,
the precursor of Public Television...yet to be debased by
fund raising and only partially redeemed by The Teletubbies
"'gain, 'gain, want watch 'gain" - The
This is warmed over, but I think nourishing,
McLuhan. The REAL Marshall McLuhan was a critic of media and
not its fan, and in The Mechanical Bride, he saw that the
media (primarily film) of his day objectified people
starting with the gals. But unlike most Anglo, American,
Canadian philosophers, Marshall acknowledged the power and
necessity of media: if we simply get rid of it we are not
saved, but become instead Unabombers.
And our tranquil moment of disembarkation
right here on this Isle of Cythera
(8) is marred, I say.
It is marred by desperate "students", Taliban who are made
to wear yellow and black golf shirts in the heat and
bully-ragged into wasting my time promising me BBC and
Cartoon Network to make their numbers, a promise they could
Of course, my Pater also railed in this way.
"I think I see my father." "Where, my lord?"
"In my mind's eye, Horatio".
And my Grandfather also railed (and railed
down Wall, and the Staten Island ferry also railed).
railed against our constant watching, our grim and unsmiling
childish suveillance, of The Three Stooges, because
Grandfather had hired men like Moe, Larry and Curley,
desperate men of the Depression when it wasn't funny to not
have money to pay for a baby, poor little parisher aye that
The PCCW infestation was a beachhead.
Normally the scene at the ferry is curiously absent of the
heraldry of corporations, the green and white of Starbucks
and the red and white of Circle K, in their own way as
frightening, as hegemonic, as double headed eagles in the
forests of Bosnia. The black and yellow of the week just
past was bad news.
I am most relieved that it will not take
much will power to resist NOW cable since it doesn't have
BBC or Cartoon Network.
Shakespeare, Sonnet 129: "An expense of spirit in a waste of
shame/Is lust in action..."
As far as I can tell, "Lebenswelt" is used in Phenomenology
to refer to life as lived, not as partitioned for academic
convenience by the professors and schoolmen, nor as
commodified by the men of the market.
Just kidding about Foucault. He is most readable and tres
amusing. He teaches us that we have been schooled (nice work
if you can get it, remedial education) to use our leisure to
improve ourselves in ways that are socially useful, but that
we cannot easily "stop the world". That is, I LIKE to run,
AND it socializes me so that I can go to work and not leap
overboard from that grim Ferry which carries across the
waters of Lethe, to work.
"Alles schön und gut" was used by German philosopher and
public intellectual Theodore Wiesengrund Adorno to refer to
what we are taught in school: about Higher things: that then
must be remedied, whether by Sergeant Major or at Work, so
that we don't expect more than our share.
I was thinking of War and Peace, in which Pierre, disordered
by his bastardy and the openness to him of aristocratic
Russian society, finds his social life devolved and debased.
This was Tolstoy's biography and it is continuous with life
Most readers will know that "the ceremony of innocence is
drowned" is good old Yeats in the Second Coming: "mere
anarchy is unleashed upon the world."
Slightly rarer, T. S. Eliot's 1930s Londoners are, in his
Four Quartets, "driven from distraction to distraction by
distraction" in a "twittering world" which he describes,
using onomatopoeia, using the names of London suburbs:
"Hampden, Clerkenwell and Putney": he foreshadows Malvina
Reynolds, the American folksinger who in 1960 beheld Daly
City as "little boxes, on the hill". Time has been kind to
neither for the homes in my own Rolling Meadows were
well-maintained and are excellent value today. Nonetheless,
the idea of borrowing money to be suburban still fills me
The Isle of Cythera was a French theme of the 18th century,
as painted by Watteau, a pastoral in which the high-born
lovers could return to Arcadia and, I'd hazard, get lucky.
We are in a sense pastoral on Lamma, trying by means of the
ferry to keep the world at bay: but as in Poussin, "et ego
in Arcadia": for as the shepherds of Arcadia discover Death
in the painting, we get cable.
"I think I see my father." "Where, my lord?" "In my mind's
eye, Horatio". Hamlet, of course.
"And wailed down Wall, and the Staten Island ferry also
wailed". Allen Ginsberg was dead by September 11 yet in Howl
he saw as in a prophetic vision "trees, clocks, radios,
tons!" when "they [my relatives in New Jersey! Dead now!
Lung cancer! Stress!] broke their backs lifting Moloch to
- Updating us on all things Brazilian on Lamma!
I read with interest your
post about Lamma's attraction to Brazilian babe cyber
searchers. I think Lamma has other links with Brazil,
babes and otherwise, as I'll explain below.
There is a small
community of Brazilians here in Lamma, such as George
and Leandro the football coaches and Barbara who teaches
Brazilian Portuguese and does Portuguese-English
translations. Barbara is cultural promoter who is hoping to
organize a Brazilian film festival in Hong Kong. Between the
three of them they have produced three offspring - or should
I say Brazilian babes. There is a also a Brazilian
capoeira teacher who visits Lamma on Saturdays to teach
this beautiful martial art/dance/acrobatics to us gringos.
It is an art which only the fittest of the fit - babes or
otherwise - can ever truly master.
I lived in Brazil for
four years and had a Brazilian baby there (see below). So, like Ronnie
Biggs, I can now not be extradited, should I go back.) I
blog about it at
…not much reference in
it on Brazilian babes, but lots about Brazilian culture,
Brazilian bureaucracy, Brazilian economy, Brazilian
politics, Brazilian education system, Brazilian tourism,
Brazilian computing. My latest posting is all about how my
laptop was pinched at Shenzhen railway station last week. On
my laptop was a series of writings about Brazil.
I used to run a Brazilian
restaurant in Brazil, and now I am looking for a partner to
open a Brazilian restaurant/bar/cafe here in Hong Kong,
Here's an idea to further
boost Lamma-Brazil links: Let's persuade the Hong Kong SAR
Government to twin Lamma with a small island community in
Brazil, then we can all go on government junkets to
Brazil, develop harmonious cross-cultural understanding with
Brazilian, babes and otherwise, and further stimulate web
My suggestion would be
the idyllic seaside town of Paraty, where I spend
many happy weekends in 2001-2005, while living in Sao Paulo.
I think this small seaside town has affinities with Lamma
Island as I will explain.
Brazil has many pleasant
seaside towns, but Paraty is something special; it is a
perfectly preserved 18th century city centre, which like
Lamma fully is pedestrianised. Like Lamma it also has some
interesting history; Brazilian gold was once embarked and
slaves disembarked on their way to their mines in the
interior. These days, Paraty lives on its tourism, location
is ideal, set in a bay with plenty of islands, many
privately owned by rich Brazilians such as Amir Klink the
explorer, and a few miles inland the steep hills are full of
perfect waterfalls set in forests filled with fruit and
hummingbirds - perfect for cooling off after a morning on
There are plenty of nice
cheap hotels there with secluded swimming pools, and hearty
breakfast buffets. Like Lamma, Paraty is popular with
artists, photographers and writers - it hosts various
cultural events such as an annual literary festival in July.
In short, it is one of the very few places in the world
where the quality of life can be compared to Lamma.
Are you one of those people who prefers to watch the
commercials on TV instead of the programming? With the quality of most of
the programming... that's not a big surprise. It seems to apply to websites
as well, even this one. What do you think why people visit Lamma.com.hk?
Certainly not to read my fluff & guff!
This website is showing up first, as the #1 for all Google
searches on "Lamma" and "Lamma Island", but we're also popular for Brazilian
bikini lovers, it seems. These are the top search terms - according to our detailed
website statistics - that web users search for and then find this website
via their search engine:
Top 100 of 1,243 Total Search
Strings on Lamma.com.hk
Band "nude" or just plain nude?
brazilian beach babes
life cafe hong kong
What's a "Brazil Butt"?
3rd-to-next Top Model was the former top search term, because
she's got a hugely successful blog and the Lamma-zine published
2 stories on her.
HK mag, founded by a Lammaite
not #1 in this list?
Internet users are keenly interested in butts...
brazil beach babes
brazilian butt lift
Available at Jax? Ask them!
why is this website so popular with aficionados of Brazilian bikinis? I
Jax! You know, the cute shop on Back Street,
G/F, 55 Tai Yuen Village, on the way to the beach? They've started advertising
their bikinis and Havaianas sandals recently, causing an influx of fans of
"Brazilian Beach Babes"! I made them a little animated ad banner
(see right) and it seems to generate a lot of wide interest in their fine
is a really amazingly quick advertiser. Within the space of a single
afternoon, she asked about an ad on this home page, I quoted her and created
the ad banner from photos she sent over and she paid by instant bank
transfer! I just adore clients like her!
By the way, this bikini photo does NOT show Jax herself! Jax definitely
looks much better than this!
For being such a quick and repeat client, I promised her a little free advertorial,
which is usually reserved
for top-of-the-home-page, long-term advertisers. And here it is, this story
is her freebie, promoting her shop and its great beach-related products.
Check it out on your next trip to the beach, click on the ad for directions
and a catalogue!
If you also might be interested in our summer special
advertising offers (till July 31 only!), check out our
advertising rate card. Your low-cost ad could be online the same day, like Jax's!
I'm leaning back now, awaiting even more hits from Brazilian
bikini lovers, caused by this story which will make this site even more
prominent in bikini-related search terms on the search engines like Google. We might need to publish some more
bikini-related stories for this new, additional readership and target demographic. Any
ideas, dear readers?
What has Lamma-Gung been doing tonight in Victoria Harbour on
a sampan, the most unstable and constantly moving type of boat in HK's
waters? Have I been:-
performing research on marine
traffic flow in HK's ever-shrinking harbour?
preparing another ever-popular shipspotting photo
testing how much it takes to become seriously seasick,
bobbing up and down, back and forth, left and right in a sampan?
checking water and wave conditions for another Lamma
doing a photo shoot of a champagne and buffet
sunset/night junk harbour cruise of Audemars Piguet, the Swiss luxury
I used to get extremely motion-sick as a child/teenager
within minutes in anything moving, even a cable car. After years on the
Lamma ferry I seem to have become immune to seasickness. This has been
proven beyond any doubt after spending 1.5 hours nonstop on a sampan in
Victoria Harbour during marine rush hour tonight. All these huge waves
rolling our tiny, round-bottomed sampan wildly in all directions, the
erratic movements never stopping, not even for a split second.
This makes picture-taking almost impossible, even with my
dSLR camera. And it was night during most of the shoot... and the junk I was
following and taking pictures off had no lights at all on deck or on the
sail, so it turned into an all-black silhouette... and I don't have one of
this very expensive image-stabilised ultra-zoom lenses yet...
So, what did I accomplish, besides filling a 4GB SD memory
card with often dark and blurry photos? Well, not much, as this was probably
the worst professional photo shoot I've endured so far. I hardly dare to
show any of the resulting photos, but let's see if there are a handful of OK
ones among the gigabytes of crap shots.
This might maybe seriously
damage my new, burgeoning career as a professional photographer, denting
my so far pretty good reputation for difficult, short-notice, low-cost photo
shoots. Here they are, the worst of the worst of this photo shoot,
straight from the camera, with only minor Photoshopping. My paying client is
only getting the very best photos, of course, and he's never going to see
any of these terrible, terrible shots below (except if he's having a look at
Please pardon me now, I feel
like an old man now after this ordeal on the high seas of HK. I need to lie
down now and wait for the world to stop moving up and down, back and forth,
left and right...
P.S. Yes, that's the Duk Ling Chinese junk above, available for
rental and great fun harbour cruises. Check out their website at
swarm of summer students in PCCW's yellow/black polo shirts have
descended on Lamma for a full ten days! Over 50 of them were spotted this
evening, from the Central and YSW ferry piers, along Main Street and
swarming through YSW in small groups of around 8 people, stopping passersby
and knocking on doors.
Yes, it's a real-life invasion of salespeople
covering most of the village trying hard to sell NOW Broadband TV to every
single household with an existing telephone land line and/or Broadband. "NOW TV has landed
on Lamma Island with a wide variety of world-class TV channels", shout
Here are some fine quotes from our lively discussion forum, called
Gisela: "I think they swarmed the island today, I just want to get
a handout to study but there were none. We're offered different prices as
I talked to different people. There is even a phone call from them as I
walked into my house, creepy."
Marc Antony: "Swarmed indeed! We came under attack at 8pm... the
dog saw them off."
Nobby: "There were about twenty of them loitering on the
power station road yesterday, but everyone was whizzing past on bikes.
Wouldn't surprise me if PCCW issues spike strips in the next few days so they can
catch the cyclists as well."
Spinoza1112: "TV is a distraction from more important Lamma
activities such as photographing frogs, attending Wild Teenage Beatnik
Parties, midnight butt-naked swimming, chowing down at Bookworm, rolling
into the sea in an old tyre, and creative forms of self abuse."
Toddy: "Like, OMG, Spinoza dude! FOX is like so the only reason
for getting NOW TV."
Alan: "We had another two salesmen come knocking (separately) on
our door after 9:30 PM.
My wife gave them an earful.
I can hardly imagine the profit on a few dozen contracts would be worth a
couple of salesmen spending days here, let alone the swarm we've been
afflicted with. They must all be on zero salary, all commission rate, which
explains their desperation and lack of scruples."
Lamma-Gung: I'm fed up, frustrated and angry after doing some
research with several salespeople and their supervisors today, on the phone
and in person. Their stupidity and incompetence is staggering and each one
is telling you a different story, contradicting each other on even the most
simple and basic facts. Their sales stories change from day to day, getting
conflicting news and instructions from their headquarter, it seems.
The amazing lack of internal co-ordination in the swarm is interesting to
watch, spreading out seemingly at random and visiting the same households
repeatedly, missing many others. Swarming locusts do a better job...
If you're interested to learn more, here's my very
detailed review about the NOW TV offer, or check out our
NOW TV forum, with 28 posted messages so far.
As the editor of the Lamma-zine, I rarely get negative feedback, even though
I'd appreciate it to help me to improve it and tailor and adapt it more to
the preferences of the readers. But somebody found the "Angel David"
illustration on July 13 "inappropriate", because David was not a religious
man. This made me think and write a lengthy reply, outlining the editorial
policy of the Lamma-zine which is quite different from a print newspaper.
Actually, I publish many stories and stuff that I personally
do not agree with. The Lamma-zine intentionally does NOT have a uniform
voice or editorial policy, as it's not the editor's personal soapbox but
hopefully reflecting the views and opinions of as many people as are willing
to express them and send them to me. Even submissions that I do not agree
with will be published, reflecting the multitude of views and personalities
on our island home. My opinion is just one of many, everyone has one and
mine is not any better or more relevant than anybody else's. We Lammaites
disagree (often passionately) on many topics and this should be reflected on
a public community platform like the Lamma-zine.
I'll merely clean up the submissions, fix the typos, grammar
and punctuation, maybe shorten it a bit, add an editorial explanation if
necessary and format it to look nice and readable on the home page, adding
pictures if available. That's about it. I do NOT make any content changes at
all. It makes my job easier and sometime I might go for an entire seven days
of articles without having to write anything myself - if I'm lucky and get
enough usable submissions.
There's also very little censorship (swear words are fine if
used for effect and not gratuitously). "Crazy", "inappropriate" or
unintentionally funny submissions (I love those and love to add
gently-teasing comments!) are most welcome. This is a "Placeblog", not a
print newspaper, so the usual journalistic rules and deadlines are relaxed a
bit. But I try hard to follow Western journalistic ethics, rules and
fact-checking. But opinions are opinions and can be voiced freely here,
especially if they're controversial!
But candid photos of a passed-out, top/bottom-less guy (pubic
hair showing prominently) in drag sleeping in plain view in a public place
at 8am - which made the rounds in the village recently - didn't get
published. No point in embarrassing and shaming the guy even more, he's
probably hiding off-island for a while now?
In general, the Lamma-zine has definitely a strong preference
for positive stories, encouraging my writers and photographers to focus on
the positive news and stories - except for negative stories that need to be
told, for example political and environmental issues. But a good rant about
the ferry service, local construction projects or your fellow Lammaites is
Send me one,
or send a few paragraphs about any Lamma- or Lammaite-related topic!
For more info and background about the Lamma-zine, read the
FAQuestions About This Website.
P.S. Just to prove that I'm not easily distracted by criticism,
here's another artwork from Sara:
Angel in Disguise.
After a few somber stories recently, let's continue the
"Cycle of Life" on Lamma by featuring a few new arrivals, beloved by many
Lammaites: new-born puppies!
Introducing two new animal companions, all-white Jack
and all-black Kiwi, photographed by master pet photographer
Both of them - and many more - are all up for adoption at the LAWC Center in
Sha Po Old Village (www.LammaAnimals.org).
Click on any photo below to see more of Leggova's amazing
from HK Magazine, July 13, click to read:
See our ironical forum about this "enlightening" in-depth interview:
Bobsy = God?
This pictorial tribute has just been submitted by
Lamma Artist Sara Sene.
It's probably the only piece of religious artwork ever published
exclusively on this website in its almost 5 years (July 23) of earthly
existence. Well, any suitable artwork is welcome for publication in this
community magazine. Click to zoom in on the painting of David's face, based
on the photo published yesterday.
P.S. At least one reader objected to this artwork above, finding it
David was not a religious man and he might have objected? But David's
sister in the US thought he'd probably be amused at being portrayed as an
As this artwork was a heart-felt, sincere tribute by a close friend and a
very religious artist, I accepted and published this artwork and stand by my
(Ian Watson's favourite photo of David. They go back 40 years, to '67-'68,
when they both worked for the Toronto Globe & Mail.)
Eulogy for David
Kerr from Christy McCormick
Delivered Hong Kong Funeral Home, North Point,
Hong Kong July 10, 2007
I would like to say a few words about our
friend David Kerr before our lives resume without him. I am
not sports fan, but I know what hockey meant to David. And
just as some of us are born to parents of celebrity, so was
David Kerr. He was the son of the legendary Dave Kerr, the
goalie of the New York Rangers whose shutouts won his team
the Stanley Cup in 1940 and won for himself the cover of
"Goalie Dave Kerr"
March 14, 1938 - Fifteen Cents
David was a sub editor much of his working
life. And when you think of it, sub editors and goalies are
in much the same business. Both work to ensure against
negative outcomes. Both must be nimble and quick in the fast
flowing play on the rink or when facing a daily newspaper
While David greatly loved the game of
hockey, and something of a partisan when it came to his
father's reputation, he was essentially a man of the
counterculture. He loved jazz, and reveled in the history
and antics of the fabled Beat Generation of the 1950s and
was something of a hippie in his younger years in the '60s
Above all, our David Kerr wanted to set his
own agenda and did the exciting thing for a boy growing up
in strait-laced Toronto in wonder years of the 1960s. He
came to bohemian Montreal. That's where I met him, but we
could never set a date. Looking back, we were laughably
provincial even in Montreal, and hardly the credible
representatives of Left Bank Paris we fancied ourselves to
be. Yet we aspired to that intellectual style, that air of
the 1920s Montparnasse literary, of the artistic and
literary scene, tempered, of course, with the downbeat hip
and cool rhythms of the Beat Generation. He loved to talk
with people -- our late friends in Montreal -- who actually
knew Jack Kerouac of On the Road fame Jack Kerouac
and that crazy New York poet, Allen Ginsburg.
And much of this activity focused on a bar
called the bistro of which David and his friends was so much
a part, and can take credit in contributing to a style that
took over much of the world -- even here in Hong Kong. Bars
in Canada, even in French-speaking Quebec, unless a part of
a hotel, or all-male taverns in Quebec or
entertainment-providing nightclubs or sexually-segregated
beer parlours in the rest of Canada, ruled what roost there
was rule. But the bistro brought the first North American
sidewalk cafe, which dominate the scene today, but were then
largely confined to continental Europe.
And in a small way at first, but to a
considerable degree, this Left Bank spirit was manifested in
Montreal as the city approached Expo '67. And it was this
world in which David Kerr played an important role, often as
a court photographer, shooting pictures not only in the
bistro itself but also at its many outside social occasions.
And it is curious that this stylistic
triumph, the North American sidewalk cafe, started first on
Mountain Street, then spread to the neighboring streets,
becoming what is still known as the "Crescent Street Scene",
and then spreading throughout the world. It looked much like
a roomier Lan Kwai Fong. And it is fair to speculate that
Hong Kong's Allan Zeman, father of Lan Kwai Fong, who grew
up in Montreal in the 1970s, came to Hong Kong and modelled
his creation on his home town's success story, which started
with that one place, the bistro.
The pub was called the bistro had something
of the ambience of Club 64. It had something of the same
ambience. I say it was "called" because the bistro was not
its real name. But even its most loyal denizens could not
remember its real name if they ever knew it. The place,
known to its owner and to Revenue Canada as Chez Lou Lou des
Bacchantes, was such an exact copy of a French bistro, with
a narrow standup zinc bar, marble tables mirrored walls and
columns, that the bistro name stuck.
David gravitated to this life of the
boulevardier, and he was central to that development at its
very beginning, one of perhaps 50 people who made the bistro
what it was, made it a place to emulate, across Canada and
around the world. As Montreal began to deny opportunities to
those who did not speak French, he came to Hong Kong and
immediately loved it. And he hoped others would love it too,
always encouraging them to visit. Perhaps for a few days,
perhaps a few years, perhaps for a lifetime.
David was always generous with his time and
with his concern for others. He was always willing to take
them on walks along the trails and beaches of Lamma Island
-- though few were up to the task of climbing to heights of
Mount Stenhouse with him. He had, as one old Montreal friend
said, "hockey genes".
From Mr DickStock,
showing David at the Press Club Ball at the now closed
Hotel, ca. 1995)
Most of us will also remember him as a
devotee of The International Herald Tribune, I think partly
because it too, was a beloved civilised remnant of the old
Paris of yesteryear. One of our enduring memories of David
is finding him sheltering behind its pages at the Spicy
Island sidewalk cafe observing the outpouring of the Lamma
Ferry or intensely reading it during his daily ocean voyages
to and from work.
David Kerr was above all a friend you could
rely on. Whatever was asked, you could depend on him to see
that it was supplied. He always did his very best to make
people's problems go away.
And now we come to say goodbye.
May I ask for a minute's silence to reflect
on the life and death of David Kerr, our friend.
Vancouver BC, Canada
My best pal is in the Kingdom of Love
I live in
Vancouver Canada and my very best friend in this world,
"David Kerr" who has lived on Lamma Island for the past 20
years or more went to The Kingdom of Love and Peace on
Wednesday of this week. You may not know him, but many of
the residents of your lovely island do. It would be a
wonderful way to show Lamma's respect for one of its own if
you could put a few words of honor in memoriam to an
outstanding citizen who always gave more than he took from
His name is
David Kerr and he lived at 2/F, 98C Tai Peng Tsuen, Lamma,
Hong Kong. We were the best of friends since 1968 in
Montreal, Quebec, and after moving to Lamma he spent 20
years working for the HK SCM Post in their editorial
department. He ate regularly at one of the waterside
restaurants, so those in that area knew him well. I would be
glad to supply you with more detailed information that is
yours for the asking.
only recent photo I have is one of "Hippo" his house
. He is a resident and I am sure he misses Davey,
too. Dave and I have been very close friends since 1968
in Montreal and especially over the past few years our
soul bond became closer. We have been in touch via Skype
2 or 3 times weekly for the past 2 years plus and I am
really going to miss that since medical problems keep me
close to the pad I have on Jericho Beach, Vancouver.
There are many people who should be thankful for Dave's
kind help over the years in Montreal. He was a quiet guy
who did what he could to lift his friends up when they
were down and out, never expecting anything in return.
Nick Bradley - New Delhi
We only Knew David for few short years, but cannot begin to
think of counting the ways this gentle soul touched our lives.
In a world of complications, David offered a constant reminder
of the importance of life's simple pleasures.
The look on his face as he slathered ketchup on a hot-dog
revealed more gusto than a line of gourmets eating foie-gras;
his expression as he downed a cold beer or shared a simple glass
of wine with friends betrayed more relish than a sommelier in a
fine old cave. But that's not to say that he wasn't a
sophisticate, because he was.
He could bounce from Oscar Wilde to Tom Waits without a
pause, but never used his wit to wound, he never stooped so low
as to use his quickness to offend.
Generous to a fault, "Mi casa es tu casa" [My house is your
house - Editor] wasn't just a chic sounding phrase in a
foreign tongue for David, but a creed to live by.
I guess we must all now count the ways we miss him.
A gentle man, a noble soul. A noble man, a gentle soul.
So long David,
Nick, Dharmi and Krishna
John and Caroline - Ex-Lammaites living in Slovenia
It appears that David has cracked his last
joke, and isn't around to hear all this, which is a shame
because he'd have really enjoyed it. Friends, a gathering,
conversation and conviviality… "What more could you ask for?"
he'd have said. That's where he excelled and it's in such
circumstances that we'll always remember him… surrounded by his
friends and having a good time.
Mind you, it's hard to suppress a bit of a
sniffle when you think that this must be the first time he's
ever checked out of a party before the end!
We'll miss him
Alan Hustak - The Gazette, Montreal
Newspaperman cut his teeth as
man about town
Tuesday, July 10, 2007
David Kerr, the genial newspaperman who cut his
teeth as a man about town in Montreal before he went to work as
an editor for the South China Morning Post in Hong Kong, was
cremated this morning.
Kerr was 62 when he died Wednesday of lung and
liver failure in Hong Kong. He was the son of Dave Kerr, the
1940 Stanley Cup-winning New York Rangers goalie.
Although born in Toronto in January 1945 and
educated there, Kerr spent much of his early adult life in
Montreal, where he worked for the Midnight Globe newspaper. He
was a familiar figure with an impish sense of humour who
frequented the Bistro bar on Mountain St., one of the happening
bohemian nightspots in the Montreal of the 1960s and '70s.
Kerr moved to Hong Kong 20 years ago. He held a
number of editing positions there with several publications and
was the centre of the island's Montreal social colony.
"David was a sub-editor much of his working
life," said former Suburban editor Christy McCormick, who
delivered the funeral eulogy in Hong Kong.
"And like his father, goalies and sub-editors are in something
of the same
business: Both do their best to ensure against bad outcomes.
Both must be nimble and quick in the fast-flowing play on the
rink or facing a daily newspaper deadline.
"Most of us will also remember David as a
devotee of the International Herald Tribune, I think partly
because it, too, was a beloved civilized remnant of the old
Paris of yesteryear.
"He was above all a friend you could rely on.
Whatever was asked, you could depend on him to see that it was
supplied. He always did his very best to make people's problems
go away," McCormick said.
Known for his wit, Kerr had a reputation for
writing breezy headlines that captured the mood and meaning of a
story. He once said of the craft:
"Headlines are the easiest things to write - once written,"
meaning that they appear simple once finished, but very hard to
compose if the story is complex and has to be summed up in three
Kerr loved jazz, was a talented amateur
photographer, a naturalist and lover of the outdoors. He was
especially fond of Lamma Island, the southern-most island of the
territory on the South China Sea, where he lived most of the
time since he arrived there in the early 1980s.
He loved to walk its trails, climb its hills and
mountains and was widely thought to know more about its
geography than almost anyone else.
Kerr is survived by an elder sister, Barbara, in
© The Gazette (Montreal) 2007
Names entered so far for the Little
Grey Newsreader Guy:
roswell, liddle dan
Dim Blather - Dan Rather's cousin nobody in the family likes to talk
Rudyard Dimberly - another distant relation to a great news icon, the
public school nickname of this dyed-in-the-wool imperialist unpatriotic
running dog that was Ruddy Dim.
Halter Kronkite (HK to his mates)
Helium Knispel - well, that would explain the voice.
Iffly, Tom, Grey, Henry, Bruce
Ned the News
Cardinal K Lee, Carnal Kid Lee
"Anal" Dirk C Lee
Add your own name
here! Prize to be won! Deadline this
Carolyn Lau - "Email to the Editor" from a concerned Lamma
the past few months, I have been attempting to organise a new
bi-lingual kindergarten on Lamma. The idea is to make it a
Montessori kindergarten, because this opportunity presented
itself and because this type of kindergarten seems well-suited
to our Lamma community. We, the organisers, have had an
excellent response from parents of more than 20 children. This
includes many queries from Lamma's local Cantonese-speakers.
On the flipside, however,
we've had comments from people saying that they disagree with
the Montessori philosophy. Other comments have been that this
Lamma kindergarten will not be a 'real' Montessori kindergarten
because it will not be registered with Montessori. We've also
had critical difficulties securing premises for the kindergarten
because some residents are scared that children in their
neighbourhood will disturb them.
But, you know what? This
kindergarten is not about any of these issues. It is about
working together to provide a much-needed resource for this
wonderful community of which we are all a part. I feel that this
resource will be invaluable in improving our community's way of
life. It will not compete with what we have, only increase our
choices. And, at the moment, this window of opportunity is
So this letter is an appeal
to the community to keep this idea alive, to ask people to take
an interest in this project and play any part they can to turn
the potential into a reality. It is not important what form the
kindergarten finally takes. It is just important that it
Elizabeth Briel - Lamma Artist,
I'm just rushing off to finish the mural
today, but wanted to give you a hearty "THANK YOU" for the
fantastic story on Sara, and thanks also for the generous
"virtual column inches" on the studio/my work, as well!
The layout, the photos, everything looks
great. We were glad you two came to this party, a pair of
Several people have come up to me saying,
"Hey, I saw you in the Lamma website!"
It's been a great opportunity to be featured
there, and I really appreciate it.
Gotta run to Shek Kip Mei and paint!
Submitted by Sara, using my photo below: "See the Banana Republic
from left to right: 2 friends of Sara, a
freelance journalist, Sara Sene himself in the center (of course!), Roy
(Elizabeth's hubby), Marjaleena (first-ever Lamma Artist of the Month,
Finnish wife of Nick the Bookman), Elizabeth Briel (The Cyan Studio).
Most of these people would make great
caricatures, don't you think?
Today, there was an exhibition of Sara Sene's artworks in
The Cyan Studio
which has just opened last month. They're showcasing a different Lamma-based
artist every month. Elizabeth Briel is also using her studio to create her
sunlight-developed Cyanotypes on paper and cloth.
Sri-Lankan multimedia artist, political
cartoonist and caricaturist extraordinaire Sara was showing off his
caricatures and sculptures. A journalist did an impromptu interview and
quite a number of Sara's many friends showed up as well, supporting him and
uttering words of encouragement and even praise, making the not-shy-at-all
artist blush (I think so).
Elizabeth Briel - Lamma Artist working and exhibiting in The
(The "Wear it" story below right comes from a recent BC Magazine)
Artists & Aficionados,
Tomorrow The Cyan Studio will feature Sri Lankan
artist/political cartoonist, Sara Sene. Stop by the studio from
2-6pm to check out striking sculptures and caricatures, sample
traditional Sri Lankan food, and meet the man himself. Many
of the subjects he portrays are larger-than-life personalities,
rather like the artist, who has led a life that's nearly as
fascinating as his work.
See a selection of his cartoons and
Hope to see you then!
PS: on the following Sunday afternoon - July
15th - The Cyan Studio will have a Portrait Party from 4-6pm.
For just HK$250 you can relax with a glass of wine (or tea) and
learn the basics for expressive portraits of yourself and
others. All levels of artists welcome, from beginners
The Cyan Studio, 6252 6839.
2/F, 21C Back Street,
Yung Shue Wan, Lamma Island,
Hong Kong S.A.R.
Marjaleena and Elizabeth relax on the sunset-view rooftop
of The Cyan Studio
If you're interested in getting a fantastic full-colour
caricature of yourself, your family or a friend, contact him. He's very
friendly, pretty fast (several decades of cartooning experience) and offers
professional but affordable fees.
He can make you look really impressive,
like a hero or like a villain, a specialty of his. It would be a great and
unique birthday or corporate gift! View some celebrity
samples below, click to enlarge.
Contact Sara or
Christy McCormick - press release
(First photo by Angela Leary, 2. and 3. photo by Christy; last one by Mr DickStock,
showing David at the Press Club Ball at the now closed Furama
Hotel, ca. 1995)
easy-going David Kerr
dies suddenly at 62.
Funeral services will be held
Tuesday, July 10, at the Hong Kong Funeral Home, 679 King's
Road, North point for David John Kerr, a long-time journalist,
who died suddenly Thursday July 5, after coping with illness for
several years. He was 62.
A short service will be held at
10.45am at the funeral home next door to Harbour Plaza Hotel.
Cremation will follow at 12.45 at Cape Collinson Crematorium.
Friends are invited to gather at the Deli Lamma Lan Kwai Fong
after the funeral.
and educated in Toronto, Canada, he spent much of his early
adult life in Montreal, where he worked for the Globe weekly
series, Mr Kerr was widely known as a keen amateur photographer,
a naturalist and a lover of the outdoors.
He has held many editing
positions in Hong Kong and was employed at The South China
Morning Post when he died.
Visitation will be at the North
Point Funeral Home from 5-10pm Monday and again from 9-11 am
Tuesday. Cremation will take place immediately after the service
at Cape Collison.
A jazz enthusiast, Mr Kerr was
especially fond of Lamma Island, the southern-most island of the
territory on the South China Sea. It was here he lived most of
his Hong Kong life since he arrived in the early 1980s.
Known for his quick headline wit,
that so perfectly caught the mood and meaning of a story in the
limited space allowed, he once famously said:
"Headlines are the easiest things to write - once written,"
meaning that they appear obviously simple once finished, but
very hard to compose if the story is complex and must be summed
up in three short words.
Mr Kerr worked for the both The
Standard, before and after its Hong Kong iMail incarnation, and
the South China Morning Post where he served with the Young Post
While a valuable man on any desk,
Mr. Kerr will be mostly remembered as being the centre of a
Montreal social colony in Yung Shue Wan on Lamma Island, which
took in a great many who had never been to Montreal and many
Above all, Mr Kerr loved to walk
the trails and climb the hills and mountains of his Lamma Island
home, and was widely thought to know more about its physical
geography than most anyone else, having walked its trails and
beaches for more than 20 years.
Mr. Kerr certainly had the legs
for it, a legacy of his famous hockey player father,
Davey Kerr, the New York Ranger goalie, whose
contribution to the 1940 playoffs won the team the Stanley Cup
in 1940, and himself the Time magazine cover picture.
many his age had given up long walks, Mr Kerr continued to trek
from one end of Lamma Island to the other, climbing its
mountains and fording its streams.
But his robust activities were
deceptive. While his legs could carry him, his liver and kidneys
had been deteriorating since 2000, when doctors said he might
not have long to live.
Last week, Mr Kerr awoke with
flu-like symptoms and did not go into work. Not feeling better
after a few hours of fitful sleep, he was persuaded to be taken
by ambulance to the Pamela Youde Nethersole Eastern Hospital
where he survived in the intensive care unit little more than 24
hours, losing consciousness shortly after arrival and never
Mr. Kerr is survived by an elder
sister, Barbara, who lives in Arizona.
P.S. David was a dear friend and a contributor to the Lamma-zine.
There'll be a follow-up story with personal memories, tributes and photos in
1-2 weeks. If YOU have something, anything, to contribute, please
I've also started a new
discussion forum topic
in David's honour.
Leggova - (Cheer)leader of the Hong Kong Photography Club:
Iman*, serial photo below right by
24th of June was the Hong Kong Photography Club's 14th outing.
The Hong Kong Photography Club
was starting in April 2006 by 3 photography lovers who were
searching for an English speaking photography club. None was
found, so we decided to start one for ourselves. Armed with a
new website and a free ad in HK magazine, the enquiries started
to roll in. 14 months later and we now have over 150 people on
the mailing list and a regular core group of around 20 people
who come to most outings.
It is a very multicultural group
with a mix of photographic abilities. On the last Sunday of
every month, we travel to somewhere in Hong Kong. This month it
was LAMMA ISLAND.
We first started off in Pak Kok
and walked through the village and up Heart Attack Hill until we
reached Tai Peng. After buying a drink at the shop to try and
rehydrate, we continued through Tai Peng village to the Cable
Path and up until we reached the hill above the windmill
overlooking the beach, the power station, the ferry pier, with a
view all the way to Lantau Island and beyond.
From there we waited until sunset
and were rewarded with a stunning view! If you are interested in
the club, we welcome all people, of all ages, of all
nationalities and of all photographic abilities. For more
information, please go to
For more photos,
Flickr pool of the HK Photography Club.
"HKPC Goes to Lamma #2" by
Iman* – "Sunset Paparazzi" by
"A Window and its History" by
La Princi –
"Window Silhouette" by
"HKPC Goes to Lamma #5" by
"Crooked Lock" by
La Princi" – "HKPC Goes to Lamma
"Great Clouds Leapt Forth Out of Her
Cloud-Machine to Battle the Sun" by
SARAsene - Multimedia Artist, Political Cartoonist and Lammaite:
professional multimedia artist living and working for the past 36
years in 16 major international cities around the world, finally
settled down in Hong Kong for the past 22 years and is having a solo exhibition of his recently done multimedia work including
controversial caricatures, illustrations and sculpture work.
He will display some of his printed
and published editorial political cartoons which helped him to win
the Amnesty International Press Awards in 1996, 1997 and 1998 in HK.
He had over 16 solo exhibitions all
over the world, including famous galleries in USA, Queen's Theatre
in the Park in New York, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Rome, Singapore,
Hong Kong, Nepal, Teheran and Colombo.
He is a controversial political
cartoonist whose works were commended by Queen Elizabeth II, former
US President Bill Clinton, ex-British Prime Minister Tony Blair and
last Governor of Hong Kong, Lord Chris Patten. He is still in exile
from his native country of Sri Lanka as he has toppled many corrupt
government officials through his published political
cartoons and caricatures.
Visiting his website at
www.SARAsene.com will help
you to gather more information and see his work.
Map of The Cyan Studio
His solo exhibition at
Studio, Lamma Island, Hong Kong will be on the 8th July
2007 and open to the general public. Drinks and Sri Lankan snacks
will be available.
Studio is located at 2/F, 21C Back Street, opposite Best
Kebab Rest. It's open every 2nd Sunday afternoon for visitors,
displaying artworks by Lamma artists.
Contact gallery owner Elizabeth to attend and/or exhibit
Your humble correspondent/editor/publisher has become the
victim of a vile, unprovoked, savage attack by the most infamous pests on
Lamma (no, not property agents)! After almost 6 years of avoiding these
creepy, crawly critters, one of them finally got me! AIEEEEYAH!
I was sitting innocently and peacefully outside the Green Cottage Rest.
yesterday afternoon, doing a Lamma-zine interview with Lamma newbie Dr
Marcus about his valiant and successful fight against excessive noise during
the construction of the new Tai Peng footbridge-harbour drainage channel.
Sipping my favourite XXL-sized coffee, suddenly I felt a sharp pain at the
top of my right foot. Looking down, an orange-black, 2-inch-long centipede
had crawled on top of my sandal-wearing foot and attacked me without any
obvious reason or provocation, savagely biting my foot! I sweeped it off
immediately with my bare hand, made my apologies to Dr Marcus and rushed to
the Lamma Clinic right away, no time for a photo.
Having read all kind of horror stories about
severe centipede bites in our Lamma forums (Centipedes,
Centipede, Cockroach, Freak of Nature?,
Centipedes), I didn't want to take any chances and get the painful
bite treated professionally right away. Would I lose my toe, foot, leg or
even my life? I've rarely traversed the village at such speed...
The doctor just had a quick look, smiled and said "Very common on Lamma!"
Checking me for any allergic reactions (none), he gave me their standard
drug cocktail (skin cream, pain killer and antihistamine tablets). See his
Consultation Summary below, backing up my story. The note is composed in
that mysterious language called Doctor's English:
C/O RT FOOT
P/E RT FOOT MILD SWELL,LOCAL TENDER,SMALL BITE HOLE
endured this very first bite of the Lamma Initiation Ritual - albeit
involuntarily - I can finally consider myself a true Lammaite now, after
almost 6 years of living here. Many other Lammaites didn't have to wait for
so long, getting "initiated" early on in their residence, the (un)lucky
guys, sometimes within mere weeks of moving here. It's the one thing many
Lammaites have in common, the Bite Mark of The Beast (see disgusting
photo of my foot below).
Today, the morning afterwards, I feel fine,
no more pain or swelling. I've survived, narrowly escaping my untimely and
painful demise! Woe and death to all Lamma centipedes! Lamma-Gung the
Stomper is out to get you from now on!
Check out our forums above for some sound and
detailed advice on how to keep these vile beasts out of your home! For a
really graphic account of an attack by another
"wicked ugly disciple of the devil",
tjungarayi's bedtime story.
(Photo by Anonymous_Guy)
Another pretty sunset tonight! Let me
try what can be done to "improve" this quite ordinary photo. Here are the
results of two hours of playing around in Photoshop with this single image,
generating a sequence of image manipulations.
Click on any image to zoom in:
Yes, I realise that I've probably failed to "improve" the sunset. Well, it's
almost impossible to "improve" the beauty of a sunset... but it was fun to
Lammaite Dr Andy Cornish, Conservation Director of the
World Wildlife Fund HK, has emailed me about a story on Lamma's Green
Turtles he's published on the WWF website. South Lamma's Sham Wan beach is
the ONLY remaining site in HK where this officially endangered species (Chelonia
mydas) has been nesting regularly in recent decades. The restricted-access
period lasts from June to September.
But since 2003, no Green Turtles have been nesting anymore at
this secluded, protected beach. Are they going extinct in HK and why? Read
Dr Andy's article to learn a lot more:
Green Turtles Face the End of Line in HK
Dr Andy has agreed to answer questions from Lamma-zine readers about this
topic. Email your questions and comments to me, I'll be happy to forward
them. Best Q&As will be published.
...said the man passing the tenth floor while falling off
(Photo courtesy of HK Air Cadets.
Click above for a photo gallery by
That's how Lamma-Por and I felt in the first few days, weeks,
months after the Handover ten years ago. We thought our remaining time in HK
would be limited and we were getting ready to get out as soon as it would
change so much for the worse that we wouldn't like it here anymore. We gave
it a maximum of two years before the heavy hand of our new masters would
transform the HK we loved so much into a place where we wouldn't want to
Ten years later, we're still here, and have no more plans to
ever leave this place where Lamma-Por was born and has grown up in and which
I also call home by now, after almost 20 years in HK. To our astonishment,
our new masters let us common people alone, to continue our lives
uninterrupted and unchanged. HK is still a great place to live and work and
have fun. Nothing really major has changed dramatically in the daily lives
of HK people. Evolution, not revolution, thankfully. Some things improved,
others have become worse, c'est la vie.
We're still free to fight for our dreams of democracy,
cleaner air, a better society and a better future for ourselves and our
families. The major upheavals of the last ten years were not triggered by
our new masters but mostly by external forces and influences. Many of them
have been handled or overcome by now. HK still stands, even stronger than
before and is still THE best place to live in Asia, in my humble opinion.
And that's a real reason to celebrate this anniversary!
So far, so good...
Read last month's stories...