Saturday, 19 June 2010

Flags at half-mast

This evening, it was my sad duty was to lower the fort flag.

Jose Saramago, Nobel laureate - and for us here at BmL - the greatest author of the last thirty years, has died.
Vale Saramago - para nós, o maior escritor dos ultimos 30 anos. 
Nós voce saúdam.  

Return to us in dreams, companheiro

Thursday, 17 June 2010

New Fort Design poll!

Seems Lt Amilcar got on the beetle-nut while was I was out briefly (shoring up allegiances among the Topasses, and looking for Sandlewood). He's redesigned the entire fort.

Check the starboard bow, Marineiros, its a new poll!

Wednesday, 16 June 2010


"Any advertisement in public space that gives you no choice whether you see it or not is yours. It belongs to you. It's yours to take, re-arrange and re-use. Asking for permission is like asking to keep the rock someone just threw at your head" - Banksy

Check out more of Banksy's online catalogue here.

West Bank Barrier, Palestine.

Monday, 14 June 2010

Ned Kelly: 'Nobody knows anything about my case except myself'

Sidney Nolan (1945). In my ill-informed opinion, the most evocative of the Ned Kelly series.

Sunday, 6 June 2010

A Mãe de todas as Fortalezas - Torre de Belem

As far as we here at BmL are concerned, this is a goddamn holy site. The mother ship. The mother lode.

The mother of all fortalezas.

All BmListas verdadeiras must - at least once - make the pilgrimage.

This is Torre de Belem.

In the pre-dawn gloom, Os Capitãos take early service in the Capella near Mosteiro dos Jerónimos - the final resting place of da Gama and Camões. They then pray to the Virgin of Safe Homecoming on the Torre that these are not their last steps on Portuguese soil, and board the thousand caravels of the great Age of Discovery.

From 1515 on, they will all hoist sail here, by the Torre, on the Tagus, in Lisbon. This Manueline masterpiece was first fort, then prison under the Espanhois *spits*  (who call it "belem", when every true son knows its pronounced "blengggg") - customs house, barracks - but always, always a symbol of Os Navegados.

Built 1515-1521, UNESCO listed in 1983. Take off your tricorn, Lt Amilcar, where do you think you're at?

Saturday, 5 June 2010

Welcome to the Jungle (2007)

Well, I don't know about you, but I'd just about watch any film set in Fiji, PNG and West Papua. The fact that this proved to be an absolute cracker was just a bonus. Loosely inspired by the mystery surrounding the disappearance in PNG of Michael Rockefeller in 1961, this 2007 horror-thriller follows two US and two Australian backpackers through the wilds of New Guinea. In a Blair Witch project meets Deliverance style, they film their own progress as things get increasingly remote and freaky.

I won't spoil the ending, though I will note that the encounter with Indonesian guards at the West Papuan border provided a few thrills in itself. I also found the dialogue between the characters - as their own relationships deteriorate - well above average quality, and genuinely amusing. Nice to see the South-West Pacific feature in commercial film at any rate - even if it is through the 'undiscovered tribe' trope. Know any others?