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DC Flag Day in the Flesh
|| 6/15/2011 || 7:01 pm || + Render A Comment || ||

Back in mid-May, late at night after a few of our friends had gotten out of jail after being arrested outside of the U.S. Capitol demonstrating in favor of voting rights & statehood for DC, Ally B., Adam E., and myself were discussing ways we could do another action. I brought up the idea of using Flag Day as an upcoming day that people could mobilize around and everyone agreed that there was enough time to plan & execute an event. Inspired by Shana Glickfield’s collection of DC Flag tattoos, together we wrote the first press release and since Adam & I were busy working on other projects, Ally did the rest of the organizing for “DC Flag Day in the Flesh“. In all, this was one of the best events I’ve ever helped to organize because we had such a great turnout and very positive media coverage. I’m looking forward to helping organize the second annual DC Flag Day in the Flesh :-) I’d like to get the folks from Guinness Book of World Records to come and document “the most tattooed ‘state’ flags in one location.”


Inked and Non-Inked Gather in Dupont Circle

Celebrate Flag Day Tuesday, June 14, 6-8 pm

It is well known that thousands of District of Columbia residents past and present sport DC flag tattoos. In fact, George Washington, whose family crest is the source of the DC flag, would never have predicted that so many would passionately adorn themselves to show their civic pride. Over the years, the “Three Stars and Two Bars” has come to symbolize over 600,000 Americans who can not enact their own laws nor elect voting representatives to the House and Senate.

This Flag Day 2011 we encourage a large gathering of people with DC Flag tattoo’s and those that support them as a way to get under the skin of America and bring attention to DC’s lack of rights in Congress.

Come celebrate DC Flag Tattoos, paint large Give Me a Vote Hands, and find out what you can do to get DC equal representation in Congress.

WHO: Inked, non-Inked, and all who LOVE DC
WHAT: Flag Day DC Celebration, Speakers sponsored by DC Vote, Art sponsored by Give Me a Vote and Albus Cavus, and surprises!
WHEN: Tuesday, June 14, 2011, 6pm to 8pm
WHERE: Dupont Circle, Washington DC, USA
“Home of Taxation Without Representation”



A couple photographs of me from BYT by Dakota Fine

DC Flag Tattoo Day – June 14 by Brandon Bloch


Video by Mike Flugennock


Video by Edgar Elmore


Video by Matt Bevilacqua

Press:
+ D.C. faithful get inked, rally for representation – Washington Post
+ D.C. Flag Tattoo Day: Show off your city pride – AP via Washington Post
+ D.C. residents to celebrate flag tattoos – AP via WTOP
+ D.C. residents to celebrate flag tattoos – AP via Federal News Radio
+ Tattooed DC Residents Push for Representation – WMAL
+ Flag day is for… showing off tattoos? – Seattle Post-Intelligencer
+ D.C. Ink: Flag-Tatted to Gather at Dupont Tomorrow – DCist
+ Photo Booth: D.C. Flag Tattoo Day – DCist
+ DC Flag Tattoo Day: Does it Matter If You’re Not Punk? – Washingtonian
+ With flag tattoos, D.C. residents seek representation in Congress – Scripps Howard
+ D.C. Flag Tattoo Day mixes District flag with tattoos – TBD
+ D.C. Flag Day tattoos: The Polaroids – TBD
+ Got a DC Flag Tattoo? Celebrate Today – NBC Washington
+ Showing off some inked skin for D.C. – WJLA
+ D.C. Flag Tattoos We Don’t Endorse, Even for Voting Rights – Washington City Paper
+ Welcome to Our Strife, Tattoo – Washington City Paper
+ Norton Commends Youth Activism and Achievements Today at Two Separate Events, DC Flag Day Tattoo Rally and Ballou STAY High School Graduation – Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC)
+ DC Statehood advocates unveil DC flag tattoos for Flag Day – DC Direct Action News
+ Photos: DC Flag Tattoo Day! Go DC! #dcflagtattoo #dcvote – Vincent Gallegos
+ DC Flag Tattoo Day – Frank Turner
+ DC Flag Tattoo Day – Borderstan

From the Washington Post article:

When Allyson Behnke’s friend was arrested back in May for rallying in support of District representation in Congress, she and a few others started brainstorming ways to raise awareness for the cause in a more entertaining way. Somebody mentioned Flag Day, and an idea tattooed itself on her mind.



Preview Video of the 2010 Cartographic Calendar [Color Edition]
|| 12/7/2009 || 8:15 pm || + Render A Comment || ||


[Watch On YouTube]

Today I received the two calendars I ordered last week. I decided to make this short video to show prospective buyers what the calendar looks like when printed out. In the video above I simply hang the calendar on the wall and flipped through each month of the Color Edition of my 2010 Cartographic Calendar. Its a somewhat simple method of showing the maps in the calendar, but I think it helps to visualize what a 17″ x 11″ calendar would look like on your wall.



Found Propaganda Map From The Oromo Liberation Front
|| 11/28/2009 || 1:39 pm || 4 Comments Rendered || ||


“OROMIA GOVERNMENT / coming soon / oh yes”

I was looking on Google Maps to see what businesses had been listed on their newly updated maps. To my surprise, I found that at the end of my block is the Washington, DC office of the Oromo Liberation Front.

The Oromo Liberation Front, or OLF, is an organization established in 1973 by Oromo nationalists to promote self-determination for the Oromo people against what they call “Abyssinian colonial rule“. It has been designated a terrorist organization by the Ethiopian government, but I have been unable to find what the United States Department of State considers this organization. Aside from an office down the alley from me in Washington, D.C., they also operate an office in Berlin where their Amharic and Afan Oromo radio stations broadcast.

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The sign I posted outside of MTV’s Real World DC house is transcribed in today’s Washington Post
|| 8/16/2009 || 3:01 pm || 2 Comments Rendered || ||

Last month's photograph of the sign I wheatpasted outside of the Real World DC house in the Dupont Circle neighborhood of Washington, DC

Last month I posted the photograph above in my entry about adding some political commentary to the area around the Real World DC house in the Dupont Circle neighborhood of Washington, DC. This morning a friend of mine left a somewhat cryptic comment on my Facebook page telling me to check section E6 in today’s Washington Post. I ran downstairs, opened the paper up, and let out out a hearty laugh.

Transcribed near the end of Dan Zak’s article, Neighborhood Watch: MTV Is in the House, and Everyone Else Just Wants to Be, is the text of my sign:

Reality Bites

Sometime in July, a sign is posted on the base of the lamppost on the northeast corner of the intersection. In simple black lettering on a plain white background, it reads, one word per line:

IN
THE
REAL
WORLD
ALL
AMERICANS
DESERVE
FULL
REPRESENTATION
IN
CONGRESS.

In the next section of the article there is choice quote from some teenagers from Maryland:

“It’s been 23 years. . . . D.C. is a treasure. . . . They’ve been to New York, like, five times. . . . It’s the capital. . . . It’ll be a really good representation of the city. . . . I talked to the cast before and they’re really down to earth.”

(underline added for emphasis of the Congressional lack thereof)

While I was not identified as the creator of the sign, even though a simple Google Search would have brought the author to my website, and the author only mentioned that there was one sign (there are 8 still up last time I counted), I’m very pleased that my sign was mentioned in today’s article. In that respect, the ten dollars spent making those signs & purchasing the wheatpaste was completely validated— my message made it into the Washington Post. But the real question is if the message will make the cut and be mentioned in any of the episodes set to air on MTV in 2010?


Since the sign(s) has been up now for just about a month, I figure its time to remove them and put up something new. I already have the next flyer made, but I’m debating if I should put them up or not. The flyer is a bit over the top, but well, umm, so are most of the people mentioned in the article. But unlike the ones who actually give two shits about the show, my aim is not to get in the house or hang out with the cast (I really could care less about that), but to use their presence in Washington, DC as a vehicle to get out the larger message of DC residents being second class citizens denied representation in Congress.


Click on the screen grab below to read the last page of the article:

Screen grab from the Washington Post article about the Real World in DC where the text of my sign is transcribed

What’s interesting about the text on-line versus the text in the printed article is that there is extra space between lines of the poster in the on-line version captured above. These extra line breaks actually make the point of the poster appear more important on-line than it does in the print edition, which does not feature extra line breaks. But since the print edition of the Washington Post is not delivered outside of the Washington, DC area, this typographical difference carries significantly more weight on-line than in print. In that respect, I must thank the web editor at the Washington Post for giving the text of my sign a little bit more emphasis than it would otherwise have received if it were identical to the print edition.


UPDATE – After I posted this entry, I went back to the Washington Post website and found that the poster was briefly shown at the beginning of the video portion of the article:

Video still of the poster being shown on the video that accompanies the article


Changing Channels – Al Jazeera English begins broadcasting in Washington, DC
|| 7/2/2009 || 11:52 pm || 2 Comments Rendered || ||

A couple weeks ago on June 25th, I attended the taping of Al Jazeera English’s town hall forum titled “Changing Channels” at the Newseum. The aim of the Q & A styled show was to give people in the Washington, DC area the opportunity to ask pointed questions to some of Al Jazeera’s main movers and shakers. Starting yesterday Al Jazeera English began broadcasting in the Washington, DC area on Comcast Channel 275, RCN Channel 34, Cox Channel 474, and Verizon FiOS Channel 457. Its too bad none of those channels show up on the basic cable at my house.


I was able to spot myself in the crowd:


For more videos visit Al Jazeera’s YouTube Channel. If you don’t have access to Al Jazeera in your city, contact your cable provider here.



A Thank You Note to Muntazer al-Zaidi outside Busboys & Poets
|| 12/15/2008 || 3:17 pm || 2 Comments Rendered || ||

Yesterday President George W. Bush was nearly beaned by two shoes thrown at him by Iraqi journalist Muntazer al-Zaidi (his first name is also sometimes spelled Montaser, Muntada, Muntather, or Muthathi). Before throwing his second shoe at the president who oversaw the invasion of his country and subsequent deaths of over million Iraqis, he said “This is from the widows, the orphans and those who were killed in Iraq.” In case you missed it, here’s the video:


On a very cold morning in February of 2007 I coordinated the amplified soundsystem at Code Pink‘s “Walk In Their Shoes” press conference on the National Mall. The centerpiece of the press conference was the unveiling of The Empty Shoes of War by Alison Flensburg (right). It’s a large plexiglass box filled with donated shoes from Americans from all over the country. On each shoe contains the name of an Iraqi civilian who has been killed by George W. Bush’s illegal war & occupation of Iraq.

Not soon after the Walk In Their Shoes press conference, the memorial was placed on display outside of Busboys & Poets, an independent bookstore & restaurant located on the corner of V & 14th street in Northwest, Washington, DC (about 5 blocks from my house). The placement of the memorial is significant because the owner of Busboys & Poets, Andy Shallal, is an Iraqi-American from Baghdad and has been against the war before it started.

Last night I was reminded of the shoes in the memorial and conceived the idea of putting up a small guerrilla thank you note as a way to publicly thank al-Zaidi for doing something millions of people around the world would love to do if they were given the opportunity.


#UPDATE# – 15/15/08 – 4pm
After the photos below I’ve added the text of a press release related to a demonstration taking place at the White House on Wednesday.


Below are some of the photos I took before putting up the note:


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In today’s Washington Jewish Weekly newspaper
|| 2/28/2008 || 4:05 pm || Comments Off on In today’s Washington Jewish Weekly newspaper || ||

My piece at the JCC is mentioned in an article in today’s Washington Jewish Weekly:

The piece by D.C. resident Nikolas Schiller portrays the Palestinian refugees’ perspective and, he says, “dissent.” He is dissenting from the 1993 map of Israel and the Palestinian territories, upon which he based his kaleidoscope image, because he sees it as “biased” in showing the territories in stripes, he says.

He also has included an image of Handala, an iconic Palestinian cartoon that he found on the Internet, on the map. Handala, which means “bitterness” in Arabic, “represents the abused Palestinian refugees,” he says.

I don’t remember saying the word “abused” the entire time I spoke with the reporter, but I’ll let it slide.

Read the entire article:

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Syndicated in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution & ABC News
|| 1/8/2008 || 9:33 pm || Comments Off on Syndicated in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution & ABC News || ||

Screen grab from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Teresa Mendez article from the Christian Science Monitor was syndicated on Sunday, December 23rd, 2007 in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. According to wikipedia, Sunday’s circulation is a little over 500,000 papers and this article appeared right before Christmas (when there are a lot of house guests). Unlike David Montgomery’s article, Teresa’s was not edited very much upon syndication, but her’s is a shorter article in wordage.

A couple weeks ago I spotted the article syndicated on the ABC News website (screen grab below), but I still don’t know how the article was ultimately used. It was written for newspapers and ABC News is broadcast news, so did it appear on a TV segment? I doubt it. ABC News probably just paid to have the article syndicated on their website to get more advertising dollars.

For both ABC News and the Atlanta Journal-Constitution the editors included my URL in the story, but unlike the Christian Science Monitor article, neither hyper-linked the URL, so I don’t know how many direct visitors my website received because of the article’s syndication. This is very annoying and I wished the web editors of the respective news organizations would do a better job with their on-line articles.

Regardless, what I like best about this syndication is that while the Christian Science Monitor article contains a 90 second audio report by the author, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution has a robot that will read the entire article for you.



Holy See an Armillary Sphere?
|| 10/7/2007 || 1:00 pm || Comments Off on Holy See an Armillary Sphere? || ||

Screen grab from the website of the Vatican showing an Armillary Sphere in the background

Looks like there is an Armillary Sphere in the background. I find this interesting simply because an Armillary Sphere most likely has a pagan Zodiac on it. Two months ago I made those Astro-theological overlays (which included the Vatican) and today I stumbled on to a slightly hidden one on the Holy See’s News Services webpage.

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Nikolas Schiller is a second-class American citizen living in America's last colony, Washington, DC. This blog is my on-line repository of what I have created or found on-line since May of 2004. If you have any questions or comments, please contact:

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  • thank you,
    come again!