Employees of the Month
Patrick Tsai has never taken a picture that hasn’t made us go “Awwwwwwwwww.” We first came across his work back when he was one half of My Little Dead Dick—our all-time favorite pair of photographic lovers. After going to school in New York, Patrick moved to his ancestral homeland of Taiwan, making his living writing for a local English-language kids’ show about a mad scientist. Ummm, what else? He told us the best thing about Taiwan is all the delicious fruit, but to watch out for the purple dragon fruit because it makes your poop purple, which is sound advice. For this issue, Patrick shot his friends having a picnic on the last day of hanami, the Japanese cherry blossom festival.
See HAPPY HANAMI!
Tao Lin is that author you’ve got an opinion about that we don’t want to hear. Tao’s written three novels, a short-story collection, and two books of poetry. He also runs a small press called Muumuu House, is working on some sort of film project with Megan Boyle, and maintains a consistent online presence, which we’ve come to realize is the most grueling, thankless work of all. When we asked him who he saw playing the characters Haley Joel Osment and Dakota Fanning in the film version of his last novel, Richard Yates, he said, “Jesse Eisenberg and Nicolas Cage.” When we asked who would play him, he said, “Sasha Grey.” Tao lives in [bum bum bahhhh] Brooklyn.
See RELATIONSHIP STORY
Martin Parr is one of Britain’s best-known photographers and one of the longest-standing members of Magnum Photos, probably the best photo agency in the galaxy. But that’s not why we love him. Well, it’s largely why we love him, but we really, really love him because he is one of Old Blighty’s most celebrated collectors of random cultural ephemera. To see his flat full of garbage from the last 30 years of humans making garbage would bring a tear to any pack rat’s eye, but his pièce de résistance is his collection of memorabilia featuring and inspired by Al Qaeda mastermind Osama bin Laden (RIP). When we heard the news that the old goat had been shot in the face, Martin was the first man we called.
See TRINKETS OF TERROR
Kara grew up in Windsor, Ontario, which is right across the river from Detroit. Not only is Windsor economically tied to that sinking brick of the American car industry, but it’s also upwind, so it lives under a semipermanent brown fog from Michigan’s refineries. We don’t know what kind of effect it has on the average human, but it has made Kara’s brain work in a way that makes us think she is either a full-bore genius or a potential serial killer. Great example: When we started work on this issue she told us she wanted to determine whether or not cervical mucus could be cooked and eaten like eggs. After dry-heaving for several minutes, we asked her how the question had come up. She said, “Well, it kinda looks like eggs.”
See OVUM EASY, PLEASE
Tim Freccia got his start in the 1980s taking pictures for Karl Lagerfeld, but it wasn’t long before he shifted gears from fashion houses to conflict zones. Since then he’s been extracting beautiful, haunting images from some of the world’s most chaotic places. We went with him to survey the extremely dodgy technological-minerals trade in the wilds of eastern Congo, where we’ve heard the locals sincerely believe that Tim is a ghost. We don’t know if playing into that belief is ethically sound, but there’s something comforting about trekking through the jungle in the dead of night with a guy who has not only repeatedly escaped death, but who has also produced go-go records and played guitar with D.O.A.
See THE HEART OF BLEAKNESS