by Stan Hayward
I am in my 80s. To be this age is largely luck. To be this age and reasonably healthy with peace of mind is even luckier. To be this age, be healthy, and not lonely makes one feel so lucky that you want to gulp the moments down like a drowning man reaching air. I have been in five car crashes without being hurt (none were my fault). During the war as a child, I experienced several bombs falling within close range and where people within yards of myself were killed or injured. Numerous other such incidents sometimes gives one a sense of invulnerability, and other times that the next incident won’t be so lucky.
I regret much but also realize that having regrets meant that I had opportunities to regret; I was lucky to have those opportunities. There is a desire to leave one’s mark; graffiti on the wall of time; an apt engraving on a tombstone or small plaque on a park bench. The gifts of inheritance that will be gratefully accepted, and carry the essence of one’s past. The slogan ‘I was here’ seems as important as always, but much more in the sense of ‘I hope I deserve it’ rather than ‘And now you know.’
Much thought is sometimes given to organ donations, with an underlying feeling of ‘Please God keep me healthy and I will give my body to science in return.’ Though living on as a kidney transplant is more of an altruistic gesture than a religious one.
When friends pass away, it is not just their presence that is lost, it is also the memories they have of you. The “Do you remember when…?” conversations that pepper the elderly reminiscences. Fear of death is actually rare and is commonly a joke. On the other hand, fear of losing one’s memories, faculties, or independence is real. We put a great value on having people who we can trust — especially to carry out wishes when we are gone. Making final decisions can be upsetting, particularly if they relate to young people who are distant in age and lifestyle yet close in relationship.
How/when did you get out?
I fleed from North Korea when I was 17, in 2006, by crossing the North Korean-China border with my mom and younger sister, with the help and under the arrangement of middlemen.
How easy was it to travel from Pyongyang to the border of China? Is it difficult? It seems like a fair amount of distance to travel when you are not in favor of the regime.
Not very difficult. No road block and no tracing, simply not exciting as you might think so. The distance is not very fair away and the travel only take 2 days.
Would you say most people in North Korea have an idea of what life outside of the country is? Were you able to pick up South Korean radio signals or use uncensored internet?
No, I never able to pick up South Korean radio signals or use uncensored internet. For common North Korean we nearly had no access to the information of what life outside of the country is life, save as those taught in school and in the media controlled by the party.
What does the population get taught about the outside world growing up?
We had little contact with the outside world in North Korea. We were taught that other countries are full of bad things such as oppression and crimes and pollution. We were taught that the imperialist United States and the South Korea were seeking all the chance to attack and occupy North Korea.
Are people in N. Korea really as brainwashed as they seem or do they just act like that to avoid problems?
We are taught to follow and not to question the official doctrines since kindergarten. I would say brainwashed may be not the most appropriate adjective and there was nothing to wash in the very beginning when we were growing up. However, I think just like in all other societies, there were someone who have rebellious mentallity whilst there were also a lot just follow the social norm. The only difference may be that for those who have rebellious mentallity, they might be forced to act in accordance with social norms just like that to avoid problems and for the majority others we were indoctrinated to act as the others.
Do you hold the belief that as a sentient being you are entitled to certain inalienable rights, such as: freedom of the press, freedom of speech, freedom of religion, and freedom of assembly? I would assume most of those would threaten the North Korean regime and would not be allowed. Also, do you believe that the North Korean people are being oppressed and mislead by their government?
I believe a person should have absolute freedom and no restrictions should be imposed unless he or she is doing harm to other person. I don’t believe in those doctrine that you have to give up a part of the freedom for the good of the country or the society.
To be fair, every governments are misleading and oppressing its people, just North Korea is far more serious in doing that. I believe that all governments are bad.
Have you read George Orwell’s 1984, from what I have seen in the media N. Korea seem scarily similar to the world in that book.
Vada Pav, India
vada pav starts with balls of spiced mashed potato dipped in a chickpea flour batter and deep-fried until golden. Next, thinly sliced green chili peppers are battered and tossed into the roiling oil. Meanwhile, soft chewy rolls are smeared with various chutneys like tamarind, mint-coriander or peanut-garlic. The roll is stuffed with one or two potato fritters, a clutch of golden chili strips and the whole beautiful mess is squished together
Chicken Rice, Singapore
The dish is nothing more than poached chicken served over rice. The chicken is poached on a low simmer in a gingery broth until perfectly cooked, still moist and juicy. The same broth is also used to simmer the jasmine rice, after it’s been sautéed in ginger and garlic. Slices of chicken are served over rice with a side of broth, sliced cucumber and hot sauce
A Texan walks into an Irish pub...
and clears his voice to the crowd of drinkers. He says, "I hear you Irish are a bunch of hard drinkers. I'll give $500 American dollars to anybody in here who can drink 10 pints of Guinness back-to-back."
The room is quiet and no one takes up the Texan's offer. One man even leaves. Ten minutes later the same gentleman who left shows back up and taps the Texan on the shoulder. "Is your bet still good?", asks the Irishman.
The Texan says yes and asks the bartender to line up 10 pints of Guinness. Immediately the Irishman tears into all 10 of the pint glasses drinking them all back-to-back. The other pub patrons cheer as the Texan sits in amazement.
The Texan gives the Irishman the $500 and says, "If ya don't mind me askin', where did you go for that 10 minutes you were gone?"
The Irishman replies, "Oh...I had to go to the pub down the street to see if I could do it first".
Donald Trump’s penthouse is seriously ugly! I guess money can’t buy you taste! – Ned Hardy
The Most Ridiculous Girls In Yoga Pants – Crowd Ignite
Lindsay Hancock is a seriously hot blonde! – Guyism
Irina Shayk And Emily Ratajkowski Battle On Instagram – Celebrity Ninja
Lauren Hanley, Girl next door…smoking hawt! – Leenks
10 Facts You Might Not Know About Death Row – Linkiest
Why You Can’t Get Rich Working For Someone Else – Business Insider
Selena Gomez and Dat Look! – Drunken Ninja
Jessica Alba Hot in a Tight Yellow Mini Skirt – G-Celeb
This is what Game of Thrones would look like if it were a Disney movie – Gizmodo
Sit back and enjoy some underboobage – Bro My God
Smoking hot latina…nuff said – Double Viking
20 Movie Titles That Make Absolutely No Sense – World Wide Intereweb
The 50 Best Documentaries Of All Time – Hi-Consumption
Leonardo DiCaprio spittin’ game at a club in Cannes – Celeb Slam
12 Rituals Happy, Successful People Practice Every Day – Marc And Angel
Belle Knox Making Her Stripping Debut In NYC – The Blemish
‘Casting couch’ porn actress commits suicide after facing online harassment – The Daily Dot
Face Down A** Up (20 Pics) – Regretful Morning
Happy Hump Day! (45 Pics) – Radass
An Inside Look At Richard Branson’s Private Necker Island – Classy Bro
How To Survive and Thrive In a Street Fight in 8 Simple Steps – The Art Of Manliness
Kennedy Summers: 2014 Playmate of the year (50 Photos) – Bad Sentinel
College girls and Keg Stands (30 Photos) – Big 10 Tens
The Card Players – Paul Cézanne – $273 Million
Seller: George Embiricos | Buyer: State of Qatar
No. 5, 1948 – Jackson Pollock – $164.7 Million
Seller: David Geffen | Buyer: David Martinez
Heather Dewey-Hagborg, a doctoral student at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute has created 3D software that produces images of people’s faces from DNA samples. Then she takes it a step further and uses a 3D printer to create a sculpture of what that person probably looks like.
In her fascinating series entitled Stranger Visions, Heather collects DNA samples from discarded objects found on the street such as hair, nails, cigarette butts and chewing gum.
She then takes the samples to a DIY biology lab where she extracts the DNA and sequences the results. The sequence is then fed into a custom-built computer program that spits out a 3D model of a face which she then prints.
Dewey-Hagborg came up with the idea during a therapy session. She was staring at the art around the room when she noticed a single hair trapped within a piece of cracked glass.
"I just became obsessed with thinking about whose hair that was and what they might look like, and what they might be like," she says.
The thought stayed with her on the subway ride home. She noticed cigarette butts, discarded chewing gum and other DNA laden objects strewn around.