Sunday, 29 November 2009

1. advent

Here is some of the festoonery. There is still stuff squirreled away in the basement somewhere that I plan to drag out before it's too late again. When we moved, I didn't think that I would be rummaging for decorations this soon, and alternately, I didn't think I would have already forgotten which random spots I tucked things in.

gratitude, don't give me no attitude

H and I spent the Thanksgiving day holiday with my parents and it was a wonderful kick off to the season. My mother had decked up the place with the santa claus clone army--usually there have been the turkey place-setting minders but there were too many of them, tucked away in a basket and it looked like a turkey massacree. It was really a fun time and inspired us to decorate our place in earnest.

Monday, 23 November 2009


Mostly I leave my handy on silent mode because I feel there's enough pervasive tinnynest for the universe to give back, but my ears lift up and listen whenever I hear some of the horrible ASCII chimes and ring-tones from ghosts of telephones past. It's a strange sort of recognition of familiarity, like seeing one has the same R2 unit. Incidentally, I believe the next hyped-up plague will be the droid-flu, H2D2.

Sunday, 22 November 2009


I could not drink wassailing wine all around but I think the only thing good about the annual increasing precedence of the Christmas season, making it a movable feast that comes earlier every year, is that one can find such drinks. The latest one is a spicy concoction called Glogg from Sweden, by the purveyors of all things Swedish and flat-pack.

Thursday, 19 November 2009

let's play global thermo-nuclear war

Watch this turn out to be an advertising ploy for the new disaster movie 2012--but a top bank is urging its clientele to prepare for total and sustained economic collapse. I wonder what sorts of contingency plans they have formulated and whether they are anything better that pushed the economy down that staircase in the first place. Or how about a nice game of tic-tac-toe?

Monday, 16 November 2009

the word gullible

I had always guessed that Americans were the only ones with national obsessions and tolerances for hoaxes and general strangeness: like Groundhog Day, overwhelming bureaucracy, toothfairies and hand-sanitizers. It seems however, Germany has quite a few of its own. There is an old elm tree in the northwest of the country that has its own zip code and people send postcards to the tree. I love it--that's so much better than mumbling to the Lincoln Memorial for advice. Now, I found that the SPD has had a non-existent member of the Bundestag since 1973. He's even counted in the officially partlimentary rolls.

Sunday, 15 November 2009

some people call me Maurice

H and I took a short trip on a lazy Sunday to nearby Coburg. Usually, I have to hunt through the city center to find a unique manhole cover to take a picture of, but in Coburg, every one had a depiction of the crest, an image of St. Moritz the city's patron. It had been years since I had been in Coburg and had never managed to see the town itself, only the fortress on the hill where Martin Luther was kept under house-arrest and finished translating the New Testament into German. Queen Victoria and Prince Albert cohabitated there for a time as well, and the whole city is drenched with seated and dethrowned royalty. There's row upon row of fantastic art deco buildings and a sackful of little castes knocking about--including one that looks like a transplanted Buckingham Palace. Albeit, there were some notorious things that went along with that hertitage as well, but it seems that sometimes city's forget and maybe appreciate the reminder that they are not some historical backwater. Even our fair village was founded by Holy Roman Emperor Charlemagne as a gift to wife, and who's ever heard of Wickedawesomestadt?

Wednesday, 11 November 2009

neuen reifen

We are now a two Volkswagon family, but I was sort of blindsided by a feeling of disappointment when I drove off into the sunset. The new car is fancy and everything I expected it to be, however, it's haunted by the ghost of the miracle car, the old Iron Lady. Never having bought a new car before, I was not quite certain about the entire process and paperwork--complicated by the fact that I bought it through an agent allied with the Candian foreign forces, Europe. I paid $100 in the form of a money order that I know must amount to a bribe for the customs Mounties. A new car just seems like a lot of responsibility, like some wealthy neighbour's invitation to house-sit and care for her pedigreed show-cat. I liked the miracle car because though one wasn't guaranteed it would endure through the day, one could start it up and not worry about obstacles, dirty foot mats, trash tossed in the back or smoking inside. Everyone was very excited that I was finally able to retrieve my new car--it was held up in a model United Nations style customs limbo, and taunted me on a daily basis when I rode into work with my boss and we could see it parked at the dealership. Few could relate to my misgivings, though some people understood and made it sound like recovery after a break-up. I had more fun with the new car driving it home last night. The engine is obscenely robust, but it is a standard in an automatic's body. I'll still need an adjustment period, however.

Friday, 6 November 2009

tumbleweed desktop validator

So, access denied:

Wednesday, 4 November 2009


from a senior citizen test:

5. Without using a calculator - You are driving a bus from London to
Milford Haven in Wales.

In London , 17 people get on the bus.
In Reading , 6 people get off the bus and 9 people get on.
In Swanson , 2 people get off and 4 get on.
In Cardiff , 11 people get off and 16 people get on.
In Swansea , 3 people get off and 5 people get on.
In Carma then, 6 people get off and 3 get on.
You then arrive at Milford Haven...

Without scrolling back to review, how old is the bus driver?

Answer: Oh, for crying out loud!

Don't you remember your own age? It was YOU driving the bus!!

If you pass this along to your friends, pray they do better than you.

PS: 95% of people fail most of the questions!
I've a lazy tendency to round my age upwards. In brief, my old miracle car has expired, using up all its nine lives--just short of the 200 000 mile benchmark I was holding as cue for new car-shopping. Meanwhile, I am still hurdling red-tape with customs and the car dealer over the delayed delivery of my brand new car. I am quite excited, though still unconsolable over getting rid of my old one, and raring to drive my new Golf 2010--my car from the future.