Against the outside drinking ban in London’s Soho

It’s come to our attention that Westminster Council is planning to enforce a ban on all outside drinking (and socialising, from one version of the legalise we read online. How would one go about restricting ‘outside socialising’? And what does outside socialising mean? It makes one reminisce of the Criminal Justice Bill, which aimed, amongst other things, to shut down raves by saying groups of twelve or more people couldn’t get together and dance to repetitive beats).

Anyone in living in a mostly commercial area that’s busy at night will know that, yes, sound pollution can seriously detriment your lifestyle. But Soho has long been accepted and welcomed as a liberal, vibrant part of London. And the drinkers there outweigh the number of pubs. Seeing fifty drinkers cluster outside a pub on a friday night in Soho is not unusual. Anyone moving to Soho surely knows what kind of environment they’re moving into. If someone buys a flat in New York’s Time Square, do they complain to the council about the distracting neon and the traffic? One hopes not.

Anyway. While petitions may arguably not do much, they do, at least, provide someone with the ability to feel like they are doing something to stand up and be counted.

Here is a little petition to try and prevent Westminster Council from proceeding with the ban:

“This petition has been created by the licensees of Soho. If you live, work or just visit Soho, and you are familiar with The Endurance Pub and want to support us against Westminster Councils objective for a complete ban on outside drinking and socializing then please sign our petition. It is the council’s intention to enforce a complete ban on outside drinking in all licensed premises.”

If you do sign it don’t forget to respond to the verification …

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Win funky electro / punk jewelry from Zlanarama

indie and punk jewelryElectro queens, kawaii kittens & punky mommas take note…

Zlanarama is an online alternative jewelry store with a beautiful mission: to restore color and whimsy to a drab and sometimes scary world. Zlanarama wants remind women of the value of many of the things considered childish in our culture. There is nothing wrong with a splash of color – or even a lot of color.

If you haven’t already entered our Mookychick competition to win online vouchers for indie and punk jewelry from Zlanarama, now’s your chance.

Enter Zlanarama punk jewelry competition on Mookychick

Competition ends 7 June 2008.

Go straight to Mookychick homepage

Please sign a petition to support belly dancers with swords…

tribal belly dance with swordsIf you’re not a bellydancer, please take time to sign a petition to support those who are.

Tribal bellydance is an art form that can use swords, but swords in bellydancing are no longer legally allowed. Here’s more information.

This just in from a bellydancer who’s been looking into the situation:

Hello all.

Sad news I’m afraid. I have just spoken to the home office and they have confirmed that belly and tribal dancers in the UK are included in the VCR (Violent Crimes Reduction Bill).

As Belly dancers, we are not covered in the exemptions of being classed as a ‘sporting activity’ or a historical reenactment. While we can perform with our existing swords, if you have public liability insurance. You can no longer purchase a new blade.

This is scary thought, as if we are not included in the exclusions to the ban, the art form of sword dancing will ultimately die out in the UK! My sword was broken recently In a workshop when it was dropped. I now can’t get a new one….

The only way we can get this changed for all belly dancers is to voice our concern and request that as a dance form that we are allowed to continue to be allowed to purchase swords, so that we can continue with a beautiful art form.

Please, please take the time to sign the <a href=””>e-petition</a&gt; to request that the government make bellydancers and tribal dancers exempt from the VCR Bill.

It will take a huge volume of dancers and people who support dance to sign the petition to make a difference, so please take the time to sign the petition and support us dancers.


Why do colours affect us?

April 27, 2008 Leave a comment

colour symbolismWe at Mookychick Towers were wondering why colour has any symbolic properties at all. This idea that black is moody, chic, evil… or that pink is fun and vibrant… WHY?

We did a bit of knocking around on the internet and this is what we found:

Color conveys meanings in two primary ways – natural associations and psychological symbolism. No, it’s not mind control. The truth of the matter is that people are comfortable when colors remind them of similar things. For example, a soft shade of blue triggers associations with the sky and a psychological sense of calm.

Successful design requires an awareness of how and why colors communicate meaning. The source of these meanings can be quite conspicuous, such as those found in nature — red is the color of blazing fire and blood, blue the color of cooling waters and the sky. Other meanings may be more complex and not universal.

As a starting point, the communicative properties of a color can be defined by two categories: natural associations and psychological (or cultural) associations.

Occurrences of colors in nature are universal and timeless. For example, the fact that green is the color of vegetation can be considered a universal and timeless association.

Color may generate another level of meaning in the mind. This symbolism arises from cultural and contemporary contexts. As such, it is not universal and may be unrelated to its natural associations. For example, green’s associations with nature communicate growth, fruitfulness, freshness and ecology. On the other hand, green may also be symbolic of good luck, seasickness, money and greed — all of which have nothing to do with green plants. These associations arise from a complex assortment of sources.

Furthermore, color may have both positive and negative symbolism. For example, although blue is the beautiful color of the sky on a sunny day, it can be symbolic of sadness or stability. Idiomatic American English reflects these traits in phrases such as “singing the blues” and “blue chip stocks.” Red is another example of dual symbolism. On one hand, as the color of fire and blood, it is an energizing, aggressive and bold color. In direct contrast, red is used for “STOP” signs throughout the world today. Psychological or Cultural Associations

Although there are no absolutes, there are logical sources for the range of complex and sometimes contradictory psychological/cultural meanings of colors. These may arise from any of the following:

1. Cultural associations: the color of currency, traditions, celebrations, geography, etc. (For example, green is associated with heaven (Muslims) and luck (U.S. and Ireland)

2. Political and historical associations: the color of flags, political parties, royalty, etc. (For example, green is the color of Libya’s flag; it’s the favorite color of Emperor Hirohito and the source of “Green Day” in Japan, and in the U.S., the Green Party.)

3. Religious and mythical associations: the colors associated with spiritual or magical beliefs (For example, the green man was the God of fertility in Celtic myths, a symbolism that carries over into today’s associations of Green M&M candies with sexuality in the U.S. Also, in contemporary Western culture, green is associated with extraterrestrial beings.)

4. Linguistic associations: color terminology within individual languages (For example, South Pacific languages refer to shades of green by comparison to plants in various stages of growth. In Scottish Gaelic the word for blue (‘gorm’) is also the word used for the color of grass.)

5. Contemporary usage and fads: current color applications to objects, sports, and associations generated by modern conventions and trends. (For example, green is used world wide for traffic lights signifying “go.” In Scandinavia, green has been a popular color for many decades. In the U.S., “avocado green” was a popular color for appliances in the 1960s. Today, lime green has been a hip and trendy color in fashion and advertising in the US since the late 1990s.)

And artists and psychologists and imagineers take note, there’s more info here:

Buy Doy Bags and support Phillipine women’s co-operatives!

April 10, 2008 Leave a comment

doy bags

Remember our article about how to make your own juice bag? A mookychick reader wrote in and told us that if you can’t be bothered to make your own but still have a concscience, you can buy cute juice bags from Doy Bags, a women’s co-operative in the Phillipines that makes these bags to get a respectable wage and stop thousands of juice bags from being burnt or buried. They even do banana ketchup bags!

Doy Bags! Fun chums! Yes indeed!

Starving dogs in the name of art…

April 10, 2008 3 comments

artist starving dogAn artist named Guillermo Vargas Habacu took a stray dog and brought it to a gallery where he tied it up with a chain to a wall and left it to die or thirst and hunger as an “artistic expression”.

And now this so called artist with this gallery are thinking of doing the same in other cities and countries.

The images may disturb you, but here is a blog featuring an online petition against Habacu starving any more dogs for art.

If you read the blog, you’ll see the artist seems to be doing this for caring reasons: he wants to highlight the plight of thousands of dogs who die in Costa Rica every year.

Starving another dog is not the way to make a stand.

Visit the blog and sign the petition.

World of modern art draws female buyers…

April 10, 2008 1 comment

feminist artThe art world is being driven by a new generation of female collectors who are dominating the market and buying work by both established and up-and-coming artists. Figures from the Arts Council in England show 56 per cent of all contemporary art in the UK is now purchased by women.

Their interest has been galvanised by the high profile of young British artists such as Tracey Emin and Rachel Whiteread, while women’s magazines are giving more space to profiling some of the rising female stars of the art world.

The large number of women who run and own the nation’s art galleries, both public and private, has also been a factor.

There are up to a dozen wealthy female art collectors in the UK who have the means to spend hundreds of thousands of pounds on a piece of contemporary art from galleries or fairs.

Patrick Elliott, the chief curator at the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art in Edinburgh, said contemporary female artists had made a huge impact on the public consciousness in recent years.

“Twenty years ago, you would have been hard-pressed to find many people on the street who could name a female contemporary artist. But people like Tracey Emin, with My Bed, which won the Turner Prize in 1999, or her rape video story of her teenage years, have really broadened the appeal, especially for adult women.

“We’re also moving away from the rather masculine environment of the Seventies when an art gallery would have an attractive girl at the front desk to catch the male client, after which the man in the back room would appear to clinch the deal.”

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