The Daily Render


A Digital Scrapbook for the Past, Present, and Future


Signs of the Time: The Healthcare Hipster [OBAMA BRING BACK ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT]
|| 8/13/2009 || 12:04 am || 1 Comment Rendered || ||

Photograph of a Hipster at a Healthcare Town Hall Meeting with a sign that says Obama Bring Back ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT from a somewhat anonymous Flickr user

Photograph from a first-time Flickr user named “granitepics”

The other day I was a asked by a friend who writes for a local DC blog called ReadySetDC to define the word “hipster.” There was recently light-hearted article in the Washington Post that used the term “quasi-hipster,” and few other blogs debated the merits of the story.

Before submitting my overtly wordy & somewhat absurd quote for his story, I sent him the link to Douglass Haddow’s Adbuster’s article that I had transcribed last summer. Basically I was implying that I’ve already offered my two cents on the topic, but I’ll still participate because I’m curious as to how other people will define the word in the entry. Visually, however….

Earlier today a friend posted this link on Facebook and after scrolling down to bottom, past the crazy signs, and the dude wearing a gun, I found the photo above and chuckled.

Oh how timely, there was a hipster…. Sporting tacky dark red sunglasses, a batman t-shirt, flip-flops, and an absurd sign: OBAMA BRING BACK ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT.

I immediately sent the photo to my high school friend Scott Thomas Towler because he used to work on the television show Arrested Development. I probably wouldn’t have even written this post had it not been for his work on the show—-

There has been such vitriol displayed at these dubiously titled “town hall” meetings by useful idiots, so seeing a hipster engaging in some type of contemporary culture jamming gave me some hope. The photograph shows that there is a societal buffer between for and against; evidence that people are not all left or right or wrong.

But then again, healthcare is a human right— something akin an inalienable right. Other countries know this very very well but there is far too much money to be made off of pain & suffering to transform health insurance corporations into non-profit entities. As such, it will continue to be a contentious issue that will be played out in the media for weeks to come.

Maybe we can begin to use a new term, like useful morons or useful morans, to describe the people being severely duped? Useful idiots needs to be modernized to describe the ignorance present in the American political landscape. Lucky for us, many of these useful morans will probably get distracted by a new television show come September. But unlike the show mentioned in sign the hipster is holding, the future health & well-being of Americans cannot be canceled.

Photograph of a Hipster at a Healthcare Town Hall Meeting with a sign that says Obama Bring Back ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT from Flickr user ccc photography

Photograph from Flickr user ccc photography

Photos from the Summer Harvest Celebration at Whipple Farms
|| 7/31/2009 || 2:52 pm || + Render A Comment || ||

Photograph by Liz Shen

Last Sunday I was invited by Aman Ayoubi, owner of numerous DC restaurants, to attend the Summer Harvest Celebration at Whipple Farms in Rixeyville, Virginia. The biodynamic farm provides his restaurant, Local 16, with most of it’s fresh fruits & vegetables. The excursion featured wines from wines Virginia-based Boxwood Winery, beers from Peroni and Leinenkugel, tons of grilled meat (which I don’t eat), skeet shooting (I shot 2 out of 4), DJs, and one of my favorite local bands, SEE-I. I hope to be invited back sometime in the near future! But more importantly, I look forward to eating the vegetables at Local 16 and the next restaurants that Aman opens because I know exactly where the food is coming from. When it comes to sustainable agriculture and urban restaurants, this method of delivering organic food directly from the farm is the way to go.

Photograph by Liz Shen

I wasn’t planning on posting the few photos that I took while at the farm, but today I noticed that the popular website Brightest Young Things had posted an entry with photos by Liz Shen that I am in (above), so I decided to upload my photos (below) for this entry:


Unique Maps of Iraq in the Iraqi Embassy in Washington, DC
|| 7/6/2009 || 12:30 pm || + Render A Comment || ||

Back in May I attended the Passport DC Open House event. 30 embassies opened their doors to the public and I chose to check out the Embassy of Iraq. While inside I came across these two unique maps.

Happy 4th of July, but remember…
|| 7/4/2009 || 7:00 pm || + Render A Comment || ||

The residents of Washington, DC are still second-class citizens who are denied the same representation in Congress that all other Americans enjoy. Today we celebrate the American independence from British tyranny, but there are still Americans struggling to overcome the tyranny of the 535 members of Congress…. I figured this photograph would ensure you are kept abreast of this continued human rights violation.

Photograph taken on Sunday May 31st, 2009 at the Coolout on the rooftop of the Beacon Hotel in Washington, DC

[Closing Today] Photocartographies: Tattered Fragments of the Map
|| 7/3/2009 || 9:38 am || 2 Comments Rendered || ||

Photograph of “10 & 110 Quilt” and “5, 10, 60 & 101 Quilt” by Noah Beil

For the last month I’ve had two maps on display in Los Angeles at the exhibition Photocartographies: Tattered Fragments of the Map and today the exhibition closes. I wish I would have budgeted some money to attend the opening in May, but thankfully photographer and participating artist Noah Beil attended the opening and took some photos that I have republished here. Click on any of them to be see the rest of the photos from the exhibition.

A big thank you goes to curators Adam Katz and Brian Rosa for organizing the exhibition and for Noah Beil for letting me republish his photos here. The commemorative artwork and the book of essays from the exhibition are still available.

Timelapse Photography of the Apotheosis of Saint Louis and the exterior of the Saint Louis Art Museum
|| 12/23/2008 || 6:00 pm || Comments Off on Timelapse Photography of the Apotheosis of Saint Louis and the exterior of the Saint Louis Art Museum || ||

After publishing the Saint Louis Art Museum Quilt earlier today, I was reminded of a series of photographs that I had taken when I had visited the museum last. It was New Years eve 2003 and Forest Park was open to highlight the start of the bicentennial anniversary of the Louisiana Purchase and the centennial anniversary of 1904 World’s Fair. While I didn’t know it at the time, the statue that I was taking photographs of was the Apotheosis of St. Louis.

According to the City of Saint Louis website:

Apotheosis of St. Louis,” the statue of Saint Louis, King Louis IX of France, was the original symbol of the City of St. Louis.

The original plaster model of this statue was cast in 1903 by Charles H.Niehaus and stood at the main entrance to the 1904 World’s Fair, where the History Museum now is located.

The Louisiana Purchase Exposition Company decided to have the sculpture cast in bronze and presented to the City of St. Louis as part of the restoration of Forest Park after the fair. They approached Niehaus, who offered to cast it in bronze for $90,000, a price so high that the project appeared to be over. A local firm, W. R. Hodges, proposed to complete the project for $37,500.

The commission accepted Hodge’s offer and the statue was replicated but Niehaus protested and sued for ownership rights. Seven months after the dedication of the gift, Niehaus was awarded $3,000 in payment and the stipulation that the pedestal be inscribed “designed by C. H. Niehaus.”

The statue was unveiled Oct. 4, 1906. It is inscribed on the north base, “Presented to the City of St. Louis by the Louisiana Purchase Exposition in commemoration of the Universal Exposition of 1904 held on this site.”

Below are the rest of the photographs I took on 12/31/03 using my old Canon S200 and a mini-tripod stand:


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:


Timelapse Astrophotography of Venus & Jupiter nearing their conjunction
|| 11/29/2008 || 11:48 am || + Render A Comment || ||

For the last month I’ve been watching the planets Venus and Jupiter inch closer and closer through the night sky. I was first tipped off about the conjunction by the Boston Globe and intend on taking some more photographs on Monday night when they’ll line up with the moon. In the photograph above you can see a plane taking off from Reagan National Airport below the the two planets.

Related Space Entries:


Bird’s Eye views of Big Diomede, Russia
|| 11/13/2008 || 6:39 pm || Comments Off on Bird’s Eye views of Big Diomede, Russia || ||

After I posted the photograph of Little Diomede, Alaska, I told my friend that I had used their photograph on my blog. Instead of being annoyed, the person sent me a couple more photographs that were taken on their Alaskan trip in the summer of 2007. Above & below are the unmodified versions of the photographs and below the fold I decided to include the two photographs after doing some color correction.

View the same photographs after color correction:


October Sunset
|| 10/13/2008 || 1:19 pm || Comments Off on October Sunset || ||

Capturing a beautiful sunset can be one of most difficult photographs to take using a point & shoot camera. Either the flash goes off and dilutes all the ambient light, or when the flash is turned off, you get an annoying blur due to the fact that you cannot stop your heart from beating in order to achieve perfect stillness. Of course its easier when you have a tripod and for this photograph I believe I simply placed the camera on the balcony of my back deck, adjusted the exposure levels, put on the timer, and the result is what you see above.

A long time ago a couple friends of mine & I devised a “Beautiful Sunset Alert System,” where subscribers would be notified if by txt of a beautiful sunset. Upon viewing a beautiful sunset, the administrators would rate the sunset’s colors & ambiance and then send out the txt with their ratings. While this system never came into reality, I would have sent out an alert.

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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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