Sunday, March 23, 2014

Dreamflash, Anime Boston festival, Tea versus Chay, Mint Donut and Secret Photography

Dreamflash 2014
IMPORTANT: It is now known that Moscow's iconic event, popular tourist attraction and the most wonderful day of the Spring will be held this year on Sunday, May 18th at the Exhibition of Achievements of the National Economy. The event will start at 14:30, as scheduled before. Please be aware that a lot of people will also be there and the place will be overcrowded and stuffed with a great concentration of love and joy.
NOTE: It was announced before that 2014's Dreamflash will be held at Maxim Gorkiy's Culture and Recreational Park, however for some reasons the place was recently changed to Exhibition of Achievements of the National Economy. Due to the fact that this caused some criticism, the place, date and time of the feast can be changed; however from the other sources it was evident that all the necessary arrangements with the local government have already been made by the organizers and is not a subject to change. Thence, it is recommended for you to schedule your third Sunday of May in advance and inform those who are still do not know that the event will take place at a stated time and place, but be au fait that it can be changed, which is not likely but still slightly possible.
For those who hear about the Dreamflash for the first time, here is a brief description of what it is. The Dreamflash, also commonly spelled as :Dreamflash, is a holiday outdoor event in a form of flashmob which is held once a year in Spring in different cities of the World, with the biggest and brightest one in Moscow, which recently became city's iconic and tourist attraction. Dreamflash is the biggest festival of  happy, free and joyful people and is perceived by them as a chance to release and share the excess of positive energy and attitude to life without claiming any slogans or pursuing any goals. Each year since 2006 when it was introduced, this holiday left the unforgettable imprint on those who were fortunate to attend it. Actively promoted and recommended by a lot, it is also good for people who suffer depression or negative attitude to life. The festival is famous for extraordinary costumes and bubble blowers. When attending it, you should wear anything bright and unusual. While choosing the clothes, never let your imagination stop soaring: your pajamas with dogface slippers, hair dyed in pink and green, costumes of different cartoon characters, crown, magic spell and golden shining nimbus over your head will be a great idea. Another distinctive feature of the participants are bubble blowers: while the costume is appreciated but optional, bubble blowers is a thing you must have. Please be aware to purchase them in advance: in the day they are usually too demanded to be easily got.
Anime Boston Festival
This weekend the largest anime festival in New England took place in its capital. All the main events were held in Hynes Convention Center. Here are some words on how it looked like.
Actually I started seeing the dressed-up a couple days before, around Wednesday. Those people in extraordinary costumes first appeared in Prudential center and then began crowding it. In general everything looked similar to Dreamflash, but indoors. I had no idea on what was going on.
A lot of people came, and it's not the word. I like watching people cosplaying somebody, and was about to look it up in the Internet what kind of fest were they having there, but did not due to extreme lack of time. I often go threw Prudential's shop galleries to make my way to Broad street campus shorter.
This event can be confidently called Boston's Dreamflash analogue. The only three disadvantages are - outside weather, which is cold and makes it hard to wear slight costumes; indoor atmosphere, which probably causes participants to be not-so-open-minded as they are on Dreamflash, forming groups and not willing to talk to, a fortiori not hugging each other; and the entrance payment, which varies from $50 to $65.
Yesterday I found out everything about the event from the people who were there. Of course I did not paid such a great price. I'm not sure if I did a right or wrong thing, maybe the price was worth it, but at least I could feel myself among the participants, the majority of which were chilling out in food court and on the first three floors of Sheraton hotel. Some of the costumes were great. Probably any characters you could find in anime and other cartoons were there. Kings and queens, victims and killers, creatures and breathers, fairies and princesses, beautiful and ugly, all came to Prudential center. Here is an example of not really beautiful ones:

But the very best costume I saw there had a person who was cosplaying a lighthouse. Imagine a two meters tall lighthouse which is just walking on its own and not disturbing anybody.
The common impression was great. Even though I did not attended any basic events because of the entrance cost, the organization was great. My highest recommendations. Regardless of the three negative parts of the event, the absence of which could have improved everything on much higher level, my grade is - excellent.
Can I have a cup of tea? Or, chay?
This afternoon I was standing in the line in local Dunkin' Donuts to buy something delicious. Afore me a woman in chador, possibly Arabic, was waiting for her turn. Finally the cashier screamed, "Next!". The woman slightly moved in the cashier's direction and in a shy but certain voice asked: "May I have a cup of chay?" The assistant misunderstood and after several woman's attempts to explain her what a chay was, the situation did not changed. I was in a rush and to speed the process I had to intervene. "She wants a cup of tea." - I clarified.
Here's some logical linguistic. That moment due to lack of time I could not realize everything, but afterwards I asked myself a question, how did I know that "chay" an Arabic woman asked the shop assistant was English "tea"? This is interesting, and since many of us could have probably came up with the same idea being on my place, how are these two words connected?
Feeling a great interest, after several researches I found out that chay, derived from Mandarin Chinese "cha", is Arabic, Azerbaijani, Bengali, Bangla, Bulgarian, both Cantonese and Mandarin Chinese, Croatian, Czech, Filipino, Georgian, Greek, Hindi, Irish, Japanese, Korean, Macedonian, Persian, Portuguese, Romanian, Russian, Serbian, Sinhalese, Slovak, Slovenian, Somali, Swahili, Thai, Tibetan, Turkish, Ukrainian, Urdu and Vietnamese for "tea". In other languages this interesting word sounds similarly to "tea" with various differences which slightly lead us to "chay". How else can the wort travel from one language to another, and how interesting and almost impossible that travel can be? To illustrate, If I'll pronounce a sentence, "I suppose that after the latest events some bigger cataclysm will happen in the World.", do I have a positive or negative attitude about our Planet's future? If you are not phobic of long French words you'll understand what I mean, or do your own research. But if you are, calm down and have a cup of chay with a mint donut, or cataclysm will happen to your brain.
Mint Donut
From the story above you learnt that I visited Dunkin' Donuts today. Now let me tell you what exactly delicious did I purchase there. They recently introduced for our criticism something new. It is - oh wow - a new Oreo Mint Donut! Please feel free to take a closer look with the help of description below.
When I came closer to register and was asked what I was going to buy, I still did not made my choice and asked for a couple more minutes to thing, letting people behind me in the line to move forward. The showcase was not stuffed with bakery, as usual. And the big green donut which, however, was different from other products by its color and size, did not grabbed my attention at once. It was a price tag of the same color announcing a newly introduced product which pushed me to make a decision to buy it and taste. Originally I love mint and anything what contains it. The donut is not an exception. The cost for this particular one was $1.06 including all taxes and things like that - that was the price I paid. For a donut, I would say, not a bad one. It was wrapped carefully in a paper bag (not plastic!) with some napkins providently put inside. After placing myself on a chair at a table nearby, I had a chance to examine what I bought.
Only the upper part tastes as mint. In the inside the donut was hollow (I mean, there was no flavor - only the dough) and some chocolate strew.
All in all, I'm recommending it. Especially donut lovers and local police would love it. My grade - 5 of 5 for price, service, appearance, taste and impression made at first, which did not betrayed the following expectations.
P H O T O - F I N I S H
A new word in secret photography
To capture the moment - this is what a motto and inmost wish of every photographer is. Thanks to Joseph Nicephore Niepse, it is possible since 1826. I am personally super exited from the idea that I can easily catch the moment and not let it disappear in forgotten past, as all the times before. And I think that the majority will agree with me, except for those who still believe that while being photographed their soul is being stolen. However everybody have a completely different attitude about secret photography, which gives birth to many new arguments and disputes. I am taking a positive side.
Let me not start another endless discussion on moral issue of such a topic. I, and personally I suppose that since I am not going to blackmail those who are on the photo, and in the mostly all cases I have absolutely no idea who am I photographing, I am finishing it. I'd rather tell you a couple secrets about the technique of this wonderful opportunity of modern times.
Hiding camera in a bag, putting it in pockets, making its size smaller is great and gives good results, that's out of doubt. But there is one problem - you feel yourself uncomfortable. Any moment somebody from around can notice how strangely you hold your bag, how unusual you turn to a particular object with only one of your sides (obviously, the side where you hid your camera) and so on. But there is such a thing as smartphone. Yes, invented just recently (well, from historical point of view recently) this wonderful thing is a dream of any secret photographer. Frankly speaking, this was a reason number one for me to buy one (after the opportunity to replace an .mp3 player and listen to music while walking somewhere outside and GPS). Its camera gives a great panoramic image with fantastically high definition. To illustrate, imagine yourself walking on the sidewalk. You see a beautiful house and you want to take its picture. If you have a usual camera, you will have to cross the road, because only from its opposite side you'll be able to take a picture of the whole building, not only the front door. But the smartphone expands the boundaries of the possible and lets the imagination soar. Only imagine what can it be when you are photographing something secretly! First of all nobody can tell if you are doing that or just working with your smartphone. And secondly, even if they will know, let them think that you are taking picture of, say, that building I was talking about, while you are really interested in the person who is standing near the next one. So, on the photo the object of your interest will be in the lower angle. But remember that you can always magnify, and the quality of magnified image will outdo your expectations. I'll try to explain what I mean on the example of the image above. The magnification is crazy. While I was photographing a spacious hall with some not very beautiful girls (or guys) wearing costumes of fairytale princesses, who were grabbing all the attention, those two on the sofa were left far aside. Yes, it is exactly the same image from the article about Anime Boston Festival, but cropped and magnified differently.In addition to that, I was holding the smartphone in the direction of the floor, so the exposition was in the upper half of the picture I got, so I bet everybody around were thinking that I was just texting with somebody or doing some stupid staff like that.
The last thing I would like to add is - make several attempts. You don't know which moment will be the best, so you'd better choose it on your own afterwards. The best option here could be filming a video and then choosing a frame from it, but the problem is that it takes a lot of memory of the camera, and one particular frame of the film usually has a lower quality than a photo.
There are a lot of tricks with secret photography, but the basics are easy to understand and use. Experiment. Imagine. Give it a try.

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