Archive | November, 2012

Zine Scene Queen

30 Nov

The Central Bus Station – well known in the city for being:

a) the place you’re most likely to get lost in

b) a haven for cheap, tacky and actually quite tempting buys

and c) somewhere to stay away from late at night.

Last night though, the preconceptions and prejudices surrounding the Techana Mercazit (Central Bus Station) were cast aside, as Tel Aviv’s most arty descended on the hub of buses for the 3rd Annual Fanzine Festival. After getting slightly disorientated (okay lost) within the maze of floors, we followed our ears to the strains of electric guitar, and found the treasure – stall after stall of lovingly created independently published magazines, known as zines. In fact, stalls were available to any visiting passerby who had arrived early enough – had Nish Nush been a zine, it may possibly had made for a fine neighbour. Although this blog is nowhere near as raunchy. The scene seems to have a penchant for humour of the naked – and of course in the name of improving my Hebrew I felt bound to take a few examples home with me.

My swag – plus some mango juice – it’s thirsty work!

Zines for sale, read all about it!

And it wasn’t all about the zine – Art exhibit rooms lined the walls – freaky toy animals swayed menacingly on strings, while next door insane images were projected on to a wall. The TLV Derby Girls – Tel Aviv’s own roller derby squad were also in attendance with their own stall, selling their uber-cool new bags and T-Shirts. I’ll be trying out the most rock’n’roll of sports very soon. Balancing skills aren’t my biggest talent, so it should be an interesting occasion. And as if to convince me that I was surely dreaming this all up in my head, a man rode through the crowd in a shopping trolley, shouting out his own political agenda (thanks for the translation Dana)!  A great alternative to Hyde Park’s speaker’s corner, Sainsbury’s should be quaking in their boots and ensuring their trolleys are firmly tied in place.


Crazy Times in The Bubble

16 Nov

Tel Aviv – otherwise known as The Bubble. People don’t Keep Calm and Carry On here – they’re not calm to begin with – they just Keep Shouting and Carry On Partying. We were talking about ‘The Bubble’ last night, discussing how in Tel Aviv the party continues, we’re all hungover, chilling out outside. Thinking it’ll never happpen – Tel Aviv is untouchable. We go inside. Gin. I steer clear but have some beer instead. Then – an air raid siren. Like something out of the Imperial War Museum. We freeze, life on Pause for one split second before everyone lurches forward, grabs for their phone and makes a slightly unsteady dash towards the door. The bombshelter is in the music school next door. Right and then right. Down we go, followed by various good looking members of the music school – despite the seriousness of the situation , a mental note (C major) is made. We stay in the wierdly modern bombshelter until the sirens stop. Nothing’s hit home although of course it has – a hazy siege has fallen over the city. Nish Nush has temporarily relocated to Jerusalem – being with a group the decision was made to move us from the city, as least for a few days. But Jerusalem feels so calm in comparison. Pale stone walls, shimmering in their goodness – welcoming us. But I miss their graffiti  clad bad cousins back in Tel Aviv already – hanging out in the city.

UPDATE – Siren sounds in Jerusalem, pegged it down to the shelter. Crazy times.


‘Rocket Fire’ by the brilliant Elliott Leigh Tucker

The First Few Steps Down The Runway… (Day 1 TLV Fashion Week)

12 Nov

A few quick words from TLV fashion week. Day 1 was the Press Conference at Tel Aviv’s Ha’Tachana – the swankily revamped old train station. Last night a collection of Israeli and international journalists gathered for a few words from the organisers, including Ofir Lev. It wouldn’t be Fashion Week without a drink of course. During London’s version I like to celeb spot outside Somerset House and then have an Expresso Martini in 1 Aldwych (okay, not JUST during fashion week…). The equivalent here turned out to be a few glasses of wine (and possibly some Arak…) in Florentine’s newest bar – Rani’s. Any bar which declares it Happy Hour the moment I walk in the door is a friend of mine, so I’ll definitely be back the for rest of the bottle.

Organiser Ofir Lev:  “Thanks for changing the brand of Israel and the coverage of Israel. We are not just some place in the Middle East with camels and an M16.”

How Long Is Now?

5 Nov

Today we were launched, suddenly, into the future. No standing on ceremony, just a big slap in the face in the form of a spiel from our Ulpan (Hebrew class) teacher on why we need start learning (um…I thought we already were??) and just get with it. And thus began the lesson on the future tense.

Drifting through it on a boat made of diet coke, I emerged into the Tel Aviv night and promptly forgot most of it, shoved straight back down again in the present, rush rush rushing off to a dance class.

The gist remains though – and it looks suspiciously like the past. Place the letters around the root to create new words – put the correct ones in and it will all look just fine. Make it up if you don’t know, fill in the memory gaps with guesses. The future’s fine and dandy. Repeat the method, this time with confidence and people won’t look at you strangely when you stride forward, knowingly into tomorrow, and tomorrow and tomorrow.

What if you completely mess up, mixing your alephs with your yuds, fucking up all over the place in the present and watching your future, like a film hurtle along with it?  Everyone’s guilty of placing the wrong letters around the root – laying shifty foundations around the future. But you can’t know until you start writing, experimenting, practicing. Then when the future comes, again, like today, you can be well and truly proud to put it in your past.

Art work in East Berlin. First seen some years ago. It’s still Now right now.
(Obviously, Josie me lav, this one’s for you! xxxxxx)

What’s Cookin’?

2 Nov

So this is just a little post – a nish nush if you will. I was going to make a post the other day called Language Crumble. Rather than getting elbow deep in flour, the thought behind it is – we are all here, in this glorious city where anything goes, a sprinkle of Russian and Ethiopian, a swift sweep past of Sudan, an avalanche of Ivrit…Ma Nishma….Cag e de la. Horosho? Besada. You get the idea. But what’s your story? What’s your problem – Ma ha B’ya shel Cha (of course shel Cha  – the man is always in the wrong (ish…) What ingredient are you stirring, pouring into a bowl and then…losing within the batter? Sometimes it can be so overwhelming – this delicious mixture, that you suddenly wake up, halfway down the mixing bowel and you realise that you’ve been completely stirred in.

It’s delicious, this mixture that’s more of a mirror  – we’re all been here before anyway, or so they tell us – this is the land you’ll return to – why not come a little early. Punctuality has never been my middle name. But somehow I’m here, on the list (of course), making trainer marks and stiletto scratches on the red carpet. No barrier to the VIP zone. Kol Ha Kavod, you made it. Now get back in the kitchen.