Image Via AwkwardSilenceGames
One Chance is a game quite unlike any you have ever played online. It is about a scientist who created a pathogen that is inadvertantly wiping out all mankind on Earth. You then have six in-game days to decided how you will spend the rest of your life. Will you stay at the office and do all you can to find a cure? Will you finally step away from the office and spend some time with the family you have been neglecting? Or will the madness and impending doom jusr cause you to lose your mind?
What really sets One Chance apart is that you really only have One Chance to play it. The game picks up on your I.P and unless you have multiple computers with multiple I.P's, you really only do get one chance in One Chance, which is part of what makes it so spectacular.
Quick warning, though. It is also quite bleak, so make those choices carefully. Games like this prove why you don't need sixty dollar video games and next-gen machines to be blown away by the medium.
The NFL’s bungling of the Ray Rice situation has been spectacular. From the original, insufficient two-game suspension, to the “Oh, wow, you guys were pretty mad, I guess I have to take this seriously now” introduction of the new domestic abuse policy, to this week’s “Who saw what when and who’s lying about it?” security footage farce. It couldn’t have been handled much worse if someone actually tried. And the man at the center of it all, Roger Goodell, hasn’t exactly instilled confidence in anyone that he knows how to correct it. The disciplinary policy has been his baby all along, and it gave him total control, and now it’s become his undoing.
I think we should replace him with a pineapple in a top hat.
Now, I hear you. You’re saying “Roger Goodell’s job is to make the owners money, and as long as he continues to do so, his job will be safe.” But I think you’re overlooking two things: First of all, the public relations hit of this actually runs the risk of costing the league money and/or continuing to tarnish its image after the mishandling of labor issues (referees) and player safety (concussions), and the owners might be happy to wipe their hands of as much of it as possible to get a fresh(ish) start. Second, and more importantly, I don’t think you’re factoring in how easy it is for the NFL to make money in 2014. Just because Goodell is turning a profit doesn’t mean some other candidate — say, a well-dressed, spiky tropical fruit — couldn’t earn at least as much, if not more. Just think of its negotiating power:
NETWORK EXEC: Dang it, look. You got us in the last deal, but we’re not doing $8 billion per year. Just can’t happen. Highest I’ll go is five.
PINEAPPLE COMMISSIONER: [says nothing, is a pineapple in a top hat]
NETWORK EXEC: Oh, you wanna play hardball, you fancy son of a bitch? I see how it is. $6 billion a year, final offer.
PINEAPPLE COMMISSIONER: [continues saying nothing, is still a pineapple in a top hat]
NETWORK EXEC: God dammit, fine. $8 billion it is. You shrewd bastard. You got me again. We’ll see how high and mighty you are next time around.
PINEAPPLE COMMISSIONER: [tips over, rolls off conference table]
As far as discipline and player safety issues go, I mean, could a pineapple in a top hat really do much worse? Even if we started determining player suspensions by dropping him down a soft, padded Plinko board — into slots labeled 1, 2, 4, 8, ENTIRE SEASON, 8, 4, 2, 1 — at least then there would be an actual justification based in reason for some of the punishments. If nothing else, it would be fair. We could let the players facing punishment drop him themselves to provide complete transparency. And we could show it live on NFL Network every Tuesday morning after that week’s round of games. Boom, another revenue stream.
And I’ve got to believe a pineapple commissioner — one who has a hard exterior people are always trying to crack to get to its sweet innards — would be sensitive to issues of head trauma. It would understand the importance of protecting your skull, that’s for sure. So that’s already three points so far in favor of a pineapple commissioner: money, new punishment system, empathy for concussed players. It could work. It could really work.
The only downside here, I suppose, is that a pineapple in a top hat probably won’t do a great job of relating to fans. You know, because pineapples can’t talk. Press conferences would be a disaster. “Mr. Commissioner, are you concerned Ndamukong Suh has gotten too good at Punishment Plinko and is gaming the system? WHY WON’T YOU ANSWER THE QUESTION?” So that could be an issue. Maybe we could just stick a little iPod mini inside him and have the lawyers record dodgy answers that can be cued up via wireless remote from across the room. That’s basically what Goodell’s doing now anyway. We’d just be removing the element of human error. And the top hat would give it more authority. I don’t know. I’m just spitballing here, but it’s a start.
The point is this: I’m not saying a pineapple in a top hat WILL be a better commissioner than Roger Goodell. I’m just saying we won’t know for sure until we let one try.
Banner via @ScottHiga
Nick Acosta of Cargo Collective converted scenes from Star Trek: The Original Series into cinematic widescreen images, as if it were shown in Cinerama. How’d he do that?
I was able to create these shots by waiting for the camera to pan and then I stitched the separate shots together. The result is pretty epic. It reminds me of the classic science fiction movies of the 50’s and 60’s. Suddenly the show has a “Forbidden Planet” vibe. Other shots remind me of how director Robert Wise would use a camera technique to keep the foreground and background elements in focus.
These are totally new concepts for me. Until David Cragin told me about them, I had never heard of reader-responsible language and writer-responsible language.
Dave works for Merck in the Safety & Environment group, knows Mandarin, has been to China 12 times since 2005, and teaches a short course on risk assessment and critical thinking at Peking University every year. He was recently appointed to the Executive Committee of the US-based Sino-American Pharmaceuticals Professional Association (SAPA), so he has a professional and personal interest in cross-cultural communication.
In an earlier post, we discussed another, related issue that interests Dave: "Critical thinking".
Let us begin our inquiry by considering this post from the CAL Learning (Culture and Language Training for a Multicultural Workplace) Blog by Lauren Supraner: "Who Is Responsible for the Message?"
Here are a couple of key excerpts:
English is a writer-responsible language. That means it is the responsibility of the writer to make sure the message is understood. Writing is clear, direct and unambiguous. Schools teach from early on the importance of structure, thesis statement and topic sentences when writing in English. A good writer assumes no or little background knowledge on the part of the reader.
Korean, Chinese, and Japanese are reader-responsible languages. That means the reader is responsible for deciphering the message, which is often not stated explicitly. For an American who is expecting direct and explicit information, this style can be very confusing.
Dave says that he agrees with the description of English writing. However, he acknowledges that he lacks sufficient basis to make a judgment on the writing of Asian languages.
The post cited above also pertains to speaking because it can fit a similar model. Good speakers in the West see it as their responsibility for the audience to understand them. In contrast, Dave says that when he has heard a regulatory official in China give a less-than-captivating talk (i.e., reading from a script), Chinese colleagues have explained, “he’s important, we need to listen and understand what he says.” Naturally, there are exceptions to these patterns in both the US and China.
Dave thinks that a good example of the English model is the Wall Street Journal, because they always assume the reader has no knowledge and, as a result, almost anyone can read the paper and understand it.
For example, when the WSJ talks about a company, it always explains the company’s business. This headline gives a simple example:
McDonald's Expects Further Challenges
Fast-Food Company Takes Steps to Repair Its Business Fundamentals
While everyone in the US should know McDonald’s is a fast-food company, the WSJ still states it (and will restate it almost any time they mention McDonald’s in an article).
Wal-Mart Looks to Grow by Embracing Smaller Stores
Retailer Tries New Business Models as Its Superstores Fall Out of Favor
Everyone knows Walmart is a retailer, but the WSJ still makes this point. If they didn’t do this, they’d have to decide which companies are known and which aren’t known. By assuming no reader knowledge, they are always consistent. If they don’t do it in the headline, they do it in the text.
Another look at the concept under discussion may be found in this article, "Reader-Writer Responsible", from the "Valuing Written Accents: International Voices in the U.S. Academy" program of the Writing Center at George Mason University, from which I take this excerpt:
Many of our informants were confused about why their teachers in the U.S. placed so much emphasis on structuring a paper, including having an explicit thesis and topic sentences. For many, this confusion stems from their experiences writing within “reader-responsible” cultures. In “reader-responsible” languages, according to John Hinds’ influential “typology” across languages, the burden is on readers for extracting the meaning from the text. In Asian cultures in particular (e.g. Japanese, Korean, Chinese, Thai), readers expect ambiguity and imprecise writing as they work their way inductively through the text. In contrast, in our writer-responsible culture, English-speaking readers expect writers to be explicit and direct. Because of these differing expectations, Hinds says, English-speaking writers typically compose across multiple drafts whereas Japanese writers, for example, may compose only one draft, which is the final product. Even in highly structured genres like the scientific research report, according to many scholars of contrastive rhetoric, reader-responsible conventions are still apparent1.
A scholarly paper focusing on Chinese may be had in Xiukun Qi and Lida Liu (Harbin Institute of Technology, China), "Differences between Reader/Writer Responsible Languages Reflected in EFL Learners’ Writing", Intercultural Communication Studies, 16.3 (2007), 148-159.
(pdf from this link)
This paper reveals the common occurrence in many Chinese EFL student learners’ English writings of a large number of sayings and parallel structures, and of diffusely organized rhetorical structures. Following the theory that the reader-responsible language differs in some way from the writer-responsible language, this study finds that the above mentioned phenomena in students’ writing do reflect some differences between the two languages, in that Chinese written discourse is likely to require readers’ background knowledge for understanding, while English written discourse tends to elaborate major propositions; Chinese rhetorical structures are often intuitively organized, while English structures are logically organized; and Chinese discourse appears to be expressive while English tends to informative. From the view of cognitive linguistics, these differences are attributed to the choice of different cognitive patterns such as imagery, metaphor, perspective, salience, selection, and encyclopedic knowledge. It is the choice of cognitive patterns that opens up a new way for Chinese EFL learners to gain clarity about the pattern of the written discourse of the target language.
Dave asked a Japanese friend who is a professor at the University of Tokyo about the article by Supraner cited near the beginning of this post and whether she agreed that Japanese is a reader-responsible language. She said “yes", and elaborated (forgive her English):
It's very interesting and I agree with the statement though not sure about Chinese or Korean but as far as Japanese is considered, I think it is true. In the lecture of Japanese language since elementary school to high school, we learn how to read between lines and actually, even government administrative documents or even constitution, ambiguous expression is used.
Therefore, for example article 9 of Japanese constitution, which is about pacifism, war renunciation and abandon war potential, we discuss about the possibility and to what extent our self defense force can act in the world crisis.
In his daily work, Dave says that he often gets involved in discussions with colleagues from Europe and elsewhere about how to interpret Chinese regulations and how to deal with confusion about the law’s requirements. There is an issue with ambiguity in how Chinese regulations are written and this can make compliance difficult. The China Daily recently discussed this as regards employment law. In particular, see the last panel on "Ambiguities in Chinese laws that may lead to discrimination disputes", which contrasts Chinese laws with US laws.
While this pertains to employment law, it’s true in other legal arenas as well.
Recently, I received this message from a Chinese colleague who was planning to come to Penn for a visit (I had told him that I had a conflict and wouldn't be able to see him, but that my colleagues were eager to meet with him):
It is a pity but it is fine if I do not meet you this time. I would like to see the Asian Week too at the NY but I am not sure if I would have chance this time.
The quality of the English is by no means poor, but when I showed these sentences to the three of my colleagues who were planning to meet with this visiting Chinese scholar when he came to Penn, none of them was able to say with assurance whether he was still intending to come or not. Consequently, since he was writing in English, I am tempted to say that, rather than there being reader-responsible languages and writer-responsible languages, there are reader-responsible cultures and writer-responsible cultures. Of course, one of the chief manifestations of culture is language, so a reader-responsible culture would be prone to manifest itself in reader-responsible language and writer-responsible culture would be prone to manifest itself in writer-responsible language. Naturally, however, if someone with a background in reader-responsible language / culture is determined to write in a clear and unambiguous manner, that is possible, and if a person with a background in writer-responsible language / culture wishes to be vague and ambiguous, that too is possible.
‘You find out these people are the same as other people,’ said Detective Joseph Cunningham.
Jan. 23, 1975: A program to calm tensions in the Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood of Brooklyn involved block-by-block visits to residents’ homes by police officers for “a few minutes of friendly talk.” The project seemed to bode well for the neighborhood, which roiled with racial tension: “Most of the policemen are white,” The Times reported, “and most of the residents black and they say the visits have brought some startling revelations. ‘You find out these people are the same as other people,’ said Detective Joseph Cunningham.” Photo: Barton Silverman/The New York Times
anyone who dislikes Morrissey for the same reason they dislike themselves is basically the gothest ever
As summer officially ends and we begin yet another inexorable slide into the black, frozen heart of winter, it’s as good a time as any for a new song from Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds.
Called “Give Us A Kiss,” the new tune is a previously unreleased song from the new documentary on the band, “20,000 Days On Earth.” While Cave does sound enthusiastic about the new film he sounds somewhat less effusive when it comes to its subject matter. Bashing Morrissey to Shortlist, he also managed to bash himself:
“He’s a great lyricist, but there’s a tone in his voice I find unlistenable. That kind of lugubrious tone. There’s the same tone in my voice actually and I find it equally unlistenable.”
If you’re a fan take a listen to “Give Us A Kiss” and see if you find it any more listenable than Cave. It’s actually quite beautiful and cinematic, if on the noirish side.
UPDATE: My Cintiq montior has died in the night. Comics are on hold until I can replace it. If you’d like to help contribute to the purchase of a new one, click here. Thanks guys! You did it! A new Cintiq is on its way (I was even able to get the 4 year warranty). Thank you so much for your help!
You thought the birds and the bees was a difficult subject? Try explaining anything from the news cycle of the last two weeks to a child. They’ll call social services on you.
Don’t forget to check out my comic at The Nib! Tell your friends about it. Set you mother’s homepage to it.
Are you going to be at SPX? It’s coming up!
Dir. Ana Lily Amirpour’s A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night is gearing up for a European film festivals. The latest Farsi-language French-subtitled trailer is above. In case you too are beautifully lost, here’s its campy description from Sundance:
Strange things are afoot in Bad City. The Iranian ghost town, home to prostitutes, junkies, pimps and other sordid souls, is a bastion of depravity and hopelessness where a lonely vampire stalks its most unsavory inhabitants. But when boy meets girl, an unusual love story begins to blossom… blood red.
An imaginary Iranian underworld in crisp noir seems like a great setting for a vampire genre update. The film opens on September 6th at the Deauville Film Festival in France, then heads to L’Etrange Film Festival and the Strasbourg Fantastic Festival.
The post A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night, An Iranian Vampire Western Noir appeared first on ANIMAL.
You’ve had this late night conversation with a friend. At least, you’ve seen Back To The Future. And you’ve wondered, “What would happen if I went back in time and killed my grandfather?” Scientific American reports that according to recent studies, you would probably be ok.
Basically, scientists figure that you could theoretically travel to the future, because you’re always moving forward in time, and if you had somehow accelerated and traveled fast enough, you would blow past all those people experiencing boring regular time and end up in the future. Scientists also figure that it’s theoretically possible to bend time back in on itself through a powerful gravitational field like that of a black hole.
Then, there are the paradoxes of time travel. Paradoxes like that whole if-you-killed-your-grandfather-you-would-have-never-existed thing. And when scientists crunch the numbers for theoretical models of these paradoxes, the numbers come out like 1+1=refrigerator. Shit doesn’t compute.
For a long time, some scientists have believed that if time travel was possible, you simply wouldn’t be able to kill your grandfather. Some Final Destination stuff would happen and you’d get hit by a truck, or you’d have a heart attack before you did it. But a new study theoretically deduces that you actually could kill your grandfather. New mathematical models (that actually compute) suggest that if you entered a wormhole to go “back in time,” you would, more or less, come out in an alternate past universe on the other side.
“That is, a time traveler who emerges from a Deutschian CTC enters a universe that has nothing to do with the one she exited in the future.”
So you could go kill your grandfather. But it wouldn’t be your grandfather. It would be an alternate universe grandfather, in what amounts to a clone of the past. So you would never be born in that universe, but you would still continue existing.
The post If You Go Back In Time And Kill Your Grandfather, You’ll Be Fine appeared first on ANIMAL.
is that a trans pride flag?
Brandy Allen: shoplifting and disorderly conduct
Fayetteville police said they have arrested a woman after she allegedly stole $144 worth of eye shadow from Ulta.
Police said they received a shoplifting call Monday afternoon at Ulta Beauty Store.
The caller told 911 dispatchers 31-year-old Brandy Allen was grabbing handfuls of make-up and shoving it in her purse.
The manager told police she approached Allen about stealing makeup from the display. When confronted by the store manager, Allen started cursing and yelling inside the store, police said.
The store manager said Allen then took out each eyeshadow and rubbed her fingers over the surface to make them looked used.
Police booked Allen into the Washington County Detention Center on shoplifting and disorderly conduct charges.
something something gay cowboys
“Playboy Bunnies“, une série du photographe freelance américain Robyn Twomey, basé à New York, qui a cherché à savoir ce que sont devenues les célèbres Bunnies de Playboy, ces pin-ups iconiques, serveuses dans les bars “Club Playboy” entre 1960 et 1988 (wikipedia). Des portraits simples et sans artifice, comme une réflexion sur les notions d’âge et de beauté…
A voir aussi : “Le manuel des Bunny Girls en 1968“.
A time-honored tradition of excluding gay groups from the New York St. Patrick’s Day parade crumbles this week. The New York Times reminds that for decades, “gays could march but were not allowed to carry anything identifying them as a group.” As first reported by the Irish Voice, OUT@NBCUniversal will be the first LGBT group to participate in the parade on March 17th, 2015 and will be “accompanied by other participants who would also like to identify as gay.” Other groups may apply in the future.
Mayor Bill de Blasio became the first mayor in twenty years not to march in the parade last year, unlike Giuliani and Bloomberg who participated annually. The landmark decision was announced today, following de Blasio’s threat to boycott the parade once more, and due to various pressures and pull-outs from sponsors and public disapproval of ye olde discriminatory policies. The other time-honored decision of getting shitfaced will continue as scheduled. (Photo: @hansziel)
But are you paying attention to what’s going on??? My heart is so heavy….. so heavy…
An attorney for the family of John Crawford III, the man fatally shot by police in an Ohio Walmart store, says surveillance video contradicts the police department’s version of events. Officers say Crawford refused to drop the pellet gun he was holding, but the video allegedly shows them gunning him down “on sight.”
Crawford, 22, was shopping at the Beavercreek, Ohio store on Aug. 5 whenpolice responded to another customer’s report that Crawford was carrying an AR-15 rifle. He was actually holding a pellet air rifle he had just picked up from a shelf in the store’s toy department.
Attorney Michael Wright says he viewed surveillance video that shows Crawford was facing away from the cops and talking to his girlfriend on the phone when police spotted him, and didn’t have the toy gun raised. Hetold WDTN Crawford probably didn’t see or hear the officers before he was shot.
"John was doing nothing wrong in Walmart, nothing more, nothing less than shopping,"Wright said, according to Reuters.
#johncrawford #rip #justice #dontshoot
Another selfie drawing of random people!
This time a BEAUTIFUL girl with an AWESOME style heroineheroine hope you like it.
it was very fun to draw her.
Yo yo yo yooooooooooooo cmon, I have a weak heart, can’t be all fine and what not…dammn
When enterprising skateboarding enthusiasts decide to build an indoor skate park they usually build it inside a similar pre-existing structure, like a warehouse or roller skating rink, but the House of Vans didn’t want to build just any old skate park.
They wanted something that looked crazy cool, had plenty of surfaces to ride and grind, and wasn't in danger of being sold out from underneath them, so when they found a space underneath London Waterloo station it was clearly meant to be.
House of Vans-London is a "free creative space" and London's only indoor skatepark, and the 3,000 square foot venue is home to more than some sick skating sessions- it also houses a decent sized music venue, art gallery, cafe, movie theater, and a few bars so guests can wet their whistle after the sesh.
The last page of a medieval book is usually a protective flyleaf, which is positioned between the actual text and the bookbinding. It was usually left blank and it therefore often filled up with pen trials, notes, doodles, or drawings. This addition I encountered today and it is not what you’d expect: a full-on drawing of a maiden playing the lute, which she holds just like a guitar. A peaceful smile shines on her face. I love this rockstar lady, so unexpectedly positioned at the end of the book, trying to catch the reader’s attention as he is closing it.
Pic: London, British Library, Sloane MS 554 (more here).
There’s something to be said for thinking outside the box and turning an idea on its head, and that’s exactly what photographer Trevor Christensen is doing with his hilarious and surprisingly thought-provoking series, Nude Portraits.
That’s because there aren’t actually any nude people in his portraits… the only person who’s naked during the photo shoot is Christensen himself, who is busy capturing his subjects’ reaction to his birthday suit.
Christensen launched the project on Monday, and since then it has exploded as this simple concept of turning the tables on the genre attracted thousands of up-votes and skyrocketed Nude Portraits onto the “Front Page of the Internet’s” front page.
Speaking with Utah Public Radio, Christensen revealed that his purpose all along has been to examine the photographer/subject relationship. “When I’m taking someone’s picture, often it puts them in a very vulnerable position,” he explained. “I think that power dynamic is really interesting, and I just want to give them the chance to also see me in a vulnerable state.”
This isn’t a surprise or trick either, he speaks to each of his subjects before hand to try and ease any potential discomfort and explain what is going to be going on. And yet, even knowing that it’s coming, the reactions are still well worth capturing on camera.
For now, the four photographs here are the only ones he’s taken, and they feature friends and girlfriends — in other words, people he’s familiar with. But his ultimate goal, as he tells UPR, is to shoot “a really broad demographic.”
As a 25-year-old, straight, white male, he wants to explore the reactions of people who fall into none of those categories. “I’m looking for [...] any amount of variation possible,” he says, mentioning ‘little old ladies’ as a possible subject, “because only my hipster friends isn’t really quite as interesting as a broader demographic.”
Image credits: Photographs by Trevor Christensen and used with permission
Fun Fact: You have several kinds of microscopic spider-relatives living on your face right now. These mites inhabit every mammal that scientists have ever attempted to find them on, with some mammals carrying up to four different species at once!
Scientists first began to understand how prevalent these mites are when they realized you can find mite DNA embedded in any sample of facial skin cells. And where there’s mite DNA, there are mites. As far as the two types of mites growing on our faces, it’s difficult to tell how they got there. They are not closely related, so it would make sense that they arrived on our skin in different ways. We may have even adopted one of them from domestic animals or pets.
These two mites could actually give us information about the history of humanity. Sequencing their genes, we could trace the path that humans took as we spread out over the Earth.
When looking at the DNA from one of our mite species, D. brevis, we found that mites from China are genetically distinct from mites from the Americas. East Asians and European populations diverged over 40,000 years ago and so far it looks like their mites did as well. On the other hand, D. folliculorum from China is indistinguishable from that of the Americas. Of the two Demodex species associated with humans, D. brevis lives deeper in your pores than folliculorum and is probably shared between people less readily, whereas D. folliculorum appears to enjoy global domination.
Geeta Pandey, "An 'English goddess' for India's down-trodden", BBC News 2/15/2011:
The Dalit (formerly untouchable) community is building a temple in Banka village in the northern Indian state of Uttar Pradesh to worship the Goddess of the English language, which they believe will help them climb up the social and economic ladder.
About two feet tall, the bronze statue of the goddess is modelled after the Statue of Liberty.
"She is the symbol of Dalit renaissance," says Chandra Bhan Prasad, a Dalit writer who came up with the idea of the Goddess of English.
"She holds a pen in her right hand which shows she is literate. She is dressed well and sports a huge hat – it's a symbol of defiance that she is rejecting the old traditional dress code.
"In her left hand, she holds a book which is the constitution of India which gave Dalits equal rights. She stands on top of a computer which means we will use English to rise up the ladder and become free for ever."
Chinki Sinha, "The English Goddess Who Went Away", Open 9/14/2013:
There could have been a black temple here. The entrance might have said ‘Paradise Lost’ after John Milton’s poem about man’s disobedience and ouster from the Garden of Eden. Milton intended the poem to justify the ways of God to men. There was no justification intended here. The temple was meant to celebrate the outcastes, the fallen—Paradise Lost would be a refuge. Within its walls, Dalits would chant ‘ABCD’ and solve mathematical equations. They would denounce other gods and goddesses who perpetuate caste barriers.
The goddess wore a hat, a gown, and had gold hair. She looked like a Statue of Liberty knock-off. Chandra Bhan Prasad, the man who created her, says there were modifications made to give the new goddess her own mythology. The Goddess of English held a keyboard and a pen. She was atop a computer on the screen of which was the chakra of the Buddhist faith. She also held the Constitution of India to cement her bond with the Dalit community because Dr BR Ambedkar, the Dalit scholar and leader, was its founding father.
Why was the temple to be black? Because people would have found it strange. It would provoke reaction and this goddess was all about reactions. Black is seen as evil. The goddess would redefine black, give it sanction, says Bhan. This was Paradise Lost. They would regain it. But nothing happened. The English goddess went as suddenly as she came.
The goddess came but only just. After the first day, she was stacked away in the office of the headmaster and for a few days, remained there in hiding. The district administration shut the temple down because, it was rumoured, Mayawati, then Chief Minister, had said there could only be one Dalit goddess in the state. Bhan wrote to the administration asking for a reason and was told there was a Supreme Court directive that no temple should be built on public land without permission from the administration.
“We said this was private land, and they still said you can’t build it,” says Bhan. “They kept sending police officials. When we started building the roof, they came and stopped us.”
The goddess was transported to the house of the school owner in a nearby town. There she remains, hidden away till she can be installed once again. The expensive black granite that was bought for construction of the temple lies around unused. Rain pours down, washing away the dirt, and the stones glisten again. A dog seeks shelter in the old office from the rain. This is where the goddess had been moved after the police came to Banka and ordered that construction be stopped.