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Die Sterne standen nicht gut, die Omen waren nicht vielversprechend und als es dann tatsächlich schief lief, konnte ich von Hippie kein Mitleid erwarten. Zu recht.
Das Risiko, eine komplett leere Location vorzufinden, war ja schon beachtlich, zumal zur selben Zeit im Urban Spree wieder eine Ceremony ihren Lauf nahm. Aber ich war in mich gegangen und hatte beschlossen, daß ich erstmal genug vom Urban Spree und den Leuten, denen man an der Warschauer Straße in den frühen Morgenstunden begegnet, hatte und so machte ich mich auf den Weg in die nostalgische Vergangenheit des U5s.
Kaum war ich aus der Tür setzte der Regen schon wieder ein und bis zum Erreichen der Hauptverkehrsader kämpfte ich tatsächlich mit dem Gedanken, umzukehren und es mir in der eigenen Stube gemütlich zu machen. Aber nein, ein Hund muss auch regelmäßig ausgeführt werden und es schadet diesem inneren Schweinehund gar nicht, wenn er ein wenig feucht wird. Auf dem Weg zur U-Bahn fiel mir mal wieder der absolute Mangel an Imbissbuden und Spätis in meinem Kiez auf und ich vertrieb mir die Zeit mit dem mentalen Ablaufen des Weges von den Wohnstätten diverser Freunde zur nächsten ÖPNV-Station und dem Zählen der verfügbaren Spätis. Sind doch weniger als ich dachte.
In der Stadtbahn begegneten mir dann auch schon die ersten Berlinbesucher und Feierwilligen. Insbesondere stachen ins Auge die Borussia-Dortmund-Fans, die sich in den Warnmustern einer Hornisse kleideten und denen daher leicht auszuweichen war. Schwieriger gestaltete sich die Sache mit der Kleingruppe, die sich zu mir auf den Vierer setzte. Zwar ließen sie verlauten, daß ihr Ziel die Warschauer Straße war und sie große Freunde des Yaams (Friede seiner Asche) sind, aber olfaktorisch hätte ihr Ziel auch eine "Motz"-Soliparty sein können. Gut, wenigstens waren es nette Exemplare der feierwütigen Rasse.
Am Alex dann gleich das nächste Ärgernis, da ich die U5 gerade noch davonruckeln sehen konnte, als ich die Rolltreppe runterkam. Sicherlich würde ich auch darauf achten, nicht zu lange an einem Ort stehenzubleiben, wenn mein Abend noch da Verlassen des Ringes auf östlicher Seite beinhalten würde, aber 20 Sekunden Geduld hätte ich dann doch zu schätzen gewusst. So hatte ich dann ausreichend Zeit, mir Gedanken darüber zu machen, ob die Omen nicht doch eine Rückkehr nahelegen würden und ob man vielleicht doch die Zeit zum Vorglühen an einer ortsnahen Alkoholvertriebsstätte nutzen sollte. Aber nichts da. Geduld und Mäßigung regierten und irgendwann konnte man dann auch die Treppe am Frankfurter Tor erklimmen, sich an der Tourigruppe mit eigenem Fass vorbeischlängeln und das Tor zum U5-Club aufstoßen.
Der Rausschmeißer nimmt das Opfer von EUR 3 entgegen, gibt einem nicht nur einen Stempel, sondern auch einen Pappbon ("Falls Du mal rauswillst." und man hört schon, wie Kate Bush über das Wunder des Wolkenkaputtmachens singt und schiebt seinen Enthusiasmus in.....



....die Leere.
Keine Sau auf der Tanzfläche und rundherum nur ein paar dunkle Gestalten in Einser- oder Zweiergrüppchen. Der Regen und der Ruf des Urban Spree waren dann wohl doch zuviel gewesen.
Aber was will man machen?
Mich erinnerte das Ganze doch sehr an die Schuldiscos meiner jüngeren Tage, was ja an sich zum Programm passte, also holte ich mir ein Snakebite von der Bar, ein Getränk, welches mich immer an die letzte Phase meiner Prägruftizeit erinnert, weil ich schon damals nicht doof genug war, es zu trinken. Aber es galt zügig einen Pegel zu erreichen und dafür ist Snakebite ideal. Kann mir eigentlich jemand erklären, warum ein Getränk, welches aus Bier (3.50 EUR/0.5l) und Cider (EUR 4/0.5l) besteht, dann EUR4.50 pro halben Liter kostet? Beide Zutaten kommen vom Fass und der Arbeitsmehraufwand ist jetzt auch keine 50 Cent, sondern bestenfalls einen festen Händedruck und zwei Erdnüsse wert. Aber gut, ich bin sehenden Auges hierher und ich habe sehenden Auges bestellt, da muss Strafe sein.
Ich eroberte mir also einen Barstuhl mit klarer Sicht auf die Tanzfläche und wartete, ob vielleicht noch jemand, den ich kenne, vorbeikommt. (An dieser Stelle bitte nochmal das Video von eben abspielen.) Hexx blinkte mich nach kurzer Zeit von der DJ-Kanzel aus an und ich setze mich in Bewegung, ihn zu begrüßen, nur um vom Barmann aufgehalten zuw werden, was ich denn bitte da oben suchen würde. Es brauchte etwas gutes Zureden seitens des Mannes, den er da so heldenhaft beschützte, bevor der Zerberus die Leiter des DJ-Olymps erklimmen ließ.
Eine Begrüßung und die Hälfte meines Drinks später wagte ich mich dann auf die Tanzfläche, beäugt von den Seiten und den Pärchen, die sich in ihnen zum Nesten zurückgezogen hatten.
Song folgte auf Song und der Abend folgte weiter dem Schema der alternativen Discos meiner jüngeren Tage bis hin zu den Alt.Rock-Hits, über die wir uns zur Jahrtausendwende so gefruet hatten. Von mir würde man da keine Klagen hören. Zwei weitere Biere sollten folgen und auch wenn ich den zweiten Auftritt des Faith Healers danken ausließ, fühlte ich wohl die Grundfeste eines gelungenen Abends. Leider schafften es die kläglichen Reste des Publikums dann irgendwann doch, entweder im Suff umzukippen oder sich auf den Weg in andere Gefilde zu machen und so nutze auch ich gegen 3 Uhr den kurzen Weg zur U-Bahn, um den Abstand zwischen mir und meinem Bett zu verringern.

Dafür, daß es nur drei Drinks waren, hatte ich am nächsten Morgen ein beachtliches Ziepen im Schädel.

Motive

Apr. 23rd, 2013 10:31 pm
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Whenever I read the phrase "Police are still looking for a motive", I have to slightly chuckle to myself, because what are they going to do with it when they find it? It's not going to help the people hurt by the crime and in most cases the perpetrator is already caught, so a motive won't help much there, either. Admittedly, it might make a difference to the incarcerated, possibly a difference between execution and lifelong imprisonment but on the whole a motive really is not good for much except to signal to the public that you are actually doing something.
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Hm, Rolf Harris has now fallen afoul of the Yew Tree. There seems to be no end. One wonders how many former idols will fall and who will be next? Has the british showbiz elite done nothing but entertain the nation and abuse the nation's youth all those decades?
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In other news: I have now been at the stroller-haters-café and.... it's okay. Certainly, the coffee isn't cheap at 3,50 EUR a cup but then you get the absolutely lovely staff tellng you how to get the most enjoyment out of your brew, not unlike the way they would at a wine tasting night. Which is undoubtedly the way they see themselves and the way the other patrons looked. It's not cheap and it may be utterly pretentious but I would be lying if I said that the coffee wasn't very, very good.
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In case you are wondering what is a hot topic in Berlin at the moment:

Berlin Café bans strollers (amongst other things)

Und dit janze nochma auf Deutsch

Of course this is turned into a huge discussion at the moment with the panicked mothers in one corner and those that never run out of people to hate in Prenzlauer Berg in the other.
I suspect that this may be nothing but a publicity stunt or more to the point an attempt to give the cafe a clear identity in an area that is brimming with cafes anyway. Admittedly it is a good one, effectively banning everything that is associated with those people that spend a gret deal of time in the area's cafes (iPads, children, sugar). The way to go would possibly be to also hire some people to chainsmoke Gaulloises inside for the proper french elite feeling, but alas, German law would not have that.
It ties in nicely with the current anti-mother/anti-tourist/anti-hipster-sentiment that can be found in many long term residents of the area but it certainly is no example of a growing intolerance against mothers/children etc. It is just one café that will not allow you to do what you are free to do in the other ten cafes to be found within a minute's walk.
And why not?
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http://unwinona.tumblr.com/post/30861660109/i-debated-whether-or-not-to-share-this-story


I actually blame RomComs and their predecessors to a certain degree, too. There still seems to be this ancient idea present in some guys' heads that in order to "win a woman's heart", you have to "conquer it". The metaphor alone tells you all about what is wrong about this idea and why, besides harrassment of the above kind, it also gave rise to the oft-discussed "nice guy fallacy".
You do not "win" or "conquer" a woman's heart by being forward, by "getting into her good books" through favours, much less through supposed "chilvalry" or "wooing". A "heart" (or more to the point, a woman. This is always about possession and control, isn't it?) is not something which you can "win" or "conquer", much less by wiles or strength.

Of course you will tell me (and yourself) that you are only doing the woman a favour by praising her beauty but this is not what this is really about.
You don't want her to notice that she is beautiful, you want her to notice what a swell guy you are for saying these things to you, in effect not validating her but your own self-worth. Sorry that it makes you angry when your ego is not stroked in this way but don't take it out on somebody who only has something to do with all of this in your head.
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Why did I stop blogging? I have stopped blogging, haven't I? You only have to look back at the archive or even *shudder* the second wave of Facebook-posts to see that there used to be far more creativity going on in my output than there has been recently. At the same time, the local forum I used to be a moderately active part of seems to have died a quiet and seemingly terminal death.
Is this all due to Facebook and Twitter, the sort of supposed social media that seem to foster connecting pre-existing material and essence ticking a box saying "I like this" over and over until there is an increasingly high-resolution image of the user's tastes?
What happened to the original content? Have I become too lazy or has my internal censor become too harsh? Is it a matter of age or a lack of reflection? Or are these just shallow times we live in?

There are of course reasons why I don't get the chance to communicate as much and as elaborately as I used to in real life but surely in the virtual realm, things should be different.
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There is now a special pink Kinder Suprise, "just for girls".
What has the responsible office been smoking to come up with this fantastic idea?
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Sigh!
I understand the enthusiasm a young mother must feel when it comes to keeping all of her friends informed about literally every shit that the youngling does but I don't have to like it, do I?
Particularly if I have just figured out who the youngling resembles.
Not the mother, not the father, no: Michael Berryman.
Hopefully this will get better with age.
von_geisterhand: Monika küsst Jörg. Sie liebt ihn. (kiss)
Absolutely shite weather out there. This is not the way I imagined this summer, but then this is not the way I imagined a fair few things.
I feel motivated to listen to Sol Invictus' "An english garden", even though this charming if creepy ghost story has changed in associations for me. Yes, I can still see the english garden in the rain in front of me but now I also see the staircase leading upstairs in the house, the terrifying calm having descended upon it, every last creature in the house under the fog of expecting the screaming to start again.

There was a time when I still had the paradise lost in front of my inner eye, knowing where and what it was I wanted to return to. These days, all that has faded and I seem to not even have the words to describe it anymore.
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I don't know, is ist me or is there something in the air affecting peoples' eyes and brains? Just days after the run-in with Conservative Girl, the SO decided to buy a new pair of trousers, a quest I accompanied her on. The sales lady was possibly slightly egocentric, possibly a little pushy, but definitely very verbal. Cheerful, too. She sold the SO a pair of trousers whic definitely looked good and attempted to also sell her one which nobody but the sales-lady liked. She probably would have tried to sell me one, as well, had it not been for the SO's fast thinking. So far, so good. Then she asked us whether we were heading for the CSD later one. After I told her that no we weren't, as we were having a friend come over later, it finally dawned on her that we were not in fact a lesbian couple. Apparently it was once more the hair that did it.

Yesterday then, as I was taking the tube across town I then found myself at the receiving end of some interesting lewd gestures from some young bloke of migratory background. At least I think he meant me. Possibly his energetic tongue was directed at the female half of the couple next to me, who were a little more embarrassed by the experience than I was.
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Ich geh so die Straße runter, vollgefressen mit asiatischen Köstlichkeiten, da rollert an der nächsten Straßenecke ein kleines Mädchen (persönliche Einschätzung auf Grundlage der äußeren Erscheinung und traditionellen Kleidungsnormen) und starrt mich eine ganze Weile an, bis sie dann fragt:
"Bist Du'n Mann oder Mädchen?"
Ich halte an, frage: "Hm?" und gehe etwas auf sie zu.
"Bist Du'n Junge oder Mädchen?"
Ich hatte mich zwar darauf eingestellt, daß ich diese Unterhaltung noch gelegentlich führen würde, aber eigentlich nicht hier und mit jemand so jungem.
"Na, siehste doch: 'n großer Junge."
"Hu...., siehst aber aus wie'n Mädchen."
Vielleicht hatte ich bislang die falsche Einstellung. Vielleicht war es falsch, bei kleinen Kindern den Welpenschutzinstinkt zu haben. Schließlich war sie nicht mehr so jung und überhaupt, wenn sie ihre formenden Jahre seit Anfang des Jahrtausends hatte, hatte sie erst recht keinen Grund, solche veralteten Ansichten zu haben. Nichtsdestotrotz und obwohl der Zorn langsam in mir hochstieg, beschloss ich das Ganze ruhig anzugehen.
"Das ist aber eine sehr konservative Einschätzung."
Pause.
"Das sieht komisch aus. So lang."
Die richtige Antwort darauf wäre natürlich gewesen: "Na, mir gefällt das Kleid, was Du da trägst, auch nicht.". Aber versuche ich es nochmal mit einer klaren Demonstration ihres Denkfehlers. Also streiche ich die Haare, die auf die falsche Seite gefallen sind, rüber.
"Nee, guck mal. Auf der Seite lang, wie'n Mädchen und auf der Seite kurz, wie'n Junge. Das ist dualistisch."
"Sieht komisch aus."
Ich wollte ihr dann erklären, daß ich das seinerzeit mal aus Liebesgründen gemacht habe, dachte mir dann, aber, daß das vielleicht doch nicht angebracht ist (und ja auch nicht gut geendet ist) und ging so meiner Wege.
Zur gleichen Zeit rollerte dann ihre Schwester (wahrscheinlich) an mir vorbei und sagt zu Mädchen #1, daß ihre Mutter sie suchen würde. Das hieß, daß die beiden hinter mir her rollern mussten, weil die Mutter etwas die Straße, die ich lang musste, stand.
Aus der Entfernung hörte ich dann noch "Guck mal, Mama, der Mann sieht aus wie ein Mädchen.", worauf ich mich kurz umdrehte und rief: "Das ist sehr konservativ."
Weil ich aber keinen Ausdruck des Verstehens auf dem Gesicht der Mutter sah, beschloss ich die Diskussion nicht weiterzuführen.

Und sowas war mal ein Stadtteil für Künstler. Sind wir im Jahre 2012 nicht schon etwas weiter? Was wird Kindern eigentlich heutzutage noch beigebracht?
von_geisterhand: Monika küsst Jörg. Sie liebt ihn. (kiss)
We went to an alternative culture place yesterday to listen to a lecture about Neofolk and its supposed inherent right-wing tendencies. In fact, let's just quote the entire text advertising the event here:

Thursday 07 June
EAG-Tresen Diesmal mit Infoveranstaltung ab 20.00 Uhr. Die „Schwarze Szene“, wie sich das Milieu der Gothics und „Gruftis“ selbst bezeichnet, wird wegen rechter Tendenzen immer wieder von Antifaschist_innen kritisiert – meistens völlig zu Recht. Besonders unangenehm fällt in diesem Zusammenhang die Stilrichtung „Neofolk“ auf, der unter anderem die bekannten rechten Musikprojekte „Death in June“ und „Von Thronstahl“ zuzurechnen sind. Der mit ein paar Bildern und Hörbeispielen garnierte Vortrag wird darüber informieren, was Neofolk eigentlich ist, woher die rechten Einflüsse kommen und was das Ganze überhaupt soll.
Danach noch ein bisschen düstere Musik und gruslige Cocktails wie „Zombie“, „Suicide“ und „Bloody Mary“ (angefragt).


For a start, the mentioned cocktails were not served and those that were, were lacking in quality. But that's besides the point now and in any case, beer was cheap.
Even if I had no particular feelings about Neofolk, I think I might have been enticed to attend on the strength of the first sentence. Allow me to translate: "The 'Black Scene', as the subculture of the goths calls itself, has repeatedly been criticised by anti-fascists due to its right-wing tendencies - mostly absolutely justifiedly."
That is quite an accusation to make, isn't it?

The lecture that followed did not live up to this level of vitriol, was rather half-arsed, not terribly well researched and preferred to suggest and insinutate rather than analyze any band or song in detail. In fairness, I have heard worse discourse on the subject but remain convinced that I could have made a better case accusing the bands of using images and ideas questionably while defending them than the speaker did just accusing them.
Where said speaker really let himself down, though, was when we corrected him on certain details and disagreed (politely*) with some of his suggestions. As he later told us, he had not expected to have somebody who already knew about the subject present and would have much preferred if we had not been there. Of course he would, it's much easier to "teach" people if they just unquestioningly accept all you tell them.
Will I have to write the final word on neofolk myself?

To cap it all off: You will have noticed that the lecture was held in the context of the "EAG"-group. That's short for "Emanzipative und Antifaschistische Gruppe", in other words: anti-fascist and anti-sexist. And ye verily, out beloved speaker did say at several points that he really wasn't all that interested in what artist said what when and why (after doing just that making his case) but that he was rather interested in equal rights and lack of prejudice.
At the same time, his girlfriend was spreading flyers advertising her events all over the place, which sported the picture of a woman cutting the throat of another, deep-clevaged female on the front. Lesbians as psychos, psycho females, the male gaze on the suffering female, the murder of the confident female, you take your pick.

*Okay, slightly less politely when he suggested that Current 93 are actually a Nazi band. Why? Because they have a song and an EP ("a whole album", in his words) called "Hitler as Kalki". What is that song about? He could not tell us.
You do not insult David Tibet lightly in my presence.

WGT 2012

Jun. 1st, 2012 02:18 pm
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So, that's my first Wave Gotik Treffen over and done with. And on the whole, it was fab. We were lucky with the weather and there was rarely a concert or event where I did not know at least one person there. On the other hand, looking at the pictures and videos that other people shot, I occasionally get the feeling that they were at a different festival. But then, I tended to visit the more leftfield and less showy concerts.
There was shitloads that one could do and see and trying to do it all would probably be a rather futile effort. Personally, I was mainly there for the concerts although the Heidnische Dorf (Pagan Village) was visited on two occasions and used for perambulation and pigging out on fruit wine and roast pig (Mmmmh, Mutzbraten!). In hindsight, more could have been done in terms of socialising but on the other hand I was there with a group of friends who I saw a fair bit of anyway.

There will be another post on the issue of tolerance at the WGT soon but for the moment, I'll just give you a quick overview of the bands/concerts:

Les Jumeaux Discordant: Neo-classical, ambient industrial, ritual: Quite decent, I thought. Good enough to buy their CD, in any case.
Gallerie Schallschutz: Industrial. Okay, but nothing special.
Cut Hands: A side project of Whitehouse, only far less noisy and with a strong african beat. I've seen them before and was quite keen on seeing them again in a different setting. This is an act that IMHO really works far better live with background projection than on record. Are they trying to say something about the way that Africa and its inhabitants have been treated over the years or the way they are seen in Europe? Maybe, but if there was a message, I did not get it either time. This time round there was also a gogo-dancer on stage for two songs. I assume that she was supposed to look cheap, crass and uncoordinated, possibly to say something about popular culture in Africa. Maybe not.
In Slaughter Natives: On CD they may sound different, but live they were like a death metal band with the guitars substituted with ambient drones and noises. Quite good.

The Kuppelhalle of the Volkspalast is an ace venue, by the way, even though it really wasn't used to full effect this time round. The speakers should be directed into the dome or there should be a band without acoustic sound-sources taking advantage of the natural reverb. Where is Test Dept. when you need them? Or Apoptose with the Fanfarenzug Leipzig?

Minamata: frantic industrial noise with hints of breakcore and a well utilised back-projection. Definitely worth checking out.
Ex.Order: Much calmer industrial, a bit like power electronics without the aggression. Didn't really win me over.
Cent Ans de Solitude: This did. It was already a joy to watch that man set up with amplified metal things but it was even more of a joy to watch him elicit all kinds of sound from it. Back projection of industrial ruins and a performer who took the applause in an almost embarassed manner, as if he was surprised that people really enjoyed his music.
He had no sense of time-keeping though and had to be reminded by the stage manager that his time was up, something he ignored for a while until they started setting up the next band while he was still playing.
Which was a bit of a shame, as the next band was Thorofon, who except for one or two "hits" I found relatively forgettable and almost poppy. For my money, CADS should have just carried on.
And then came Brighter Death Now. What he produced in terms of sound was noisy and atonal but never really took off IMHO. What was far more of a problem, though, was that he was completely off his face, stumbling around the stage and taking occasional naps at the back of it. The stage manager had her hands full with him. She had also found it necessary to fill the orchestra pit with all the security personnel they had at their disposal staring at the audience. Presumably this was in order to prevent anybody from taking a shot at Mr. BDN (an idea which must have occured to a few people) but it also added wonderfully to the aggressive atmosphere. Possibly all of this was just an act to antagonize the audience, and if it was, it worked. All in all, a memorable but unsatisfying experience.

Solblot (Swedish Folk): This one I did not watch but only listen to from the hall. There is nothing wrong with it, it's very pleasant and ticks all the boxes but at the same time it's nothing special.
Vurgart (German Neofolk) Do you like Sonne Hagal? Then you might like this. It's essentially a side-project of some SH-people, slightly more rock-orientated. Meh!
Ain Soph (Italian Rock): They were okay but I was always hoping for them to become more industrial/noisy/ritual, which they never did, hence I felt disappointed. Maybe I should give them a second chance on CD. This was rock, plain and simple.
Gnomoclast and Luftwaffe were essentially the same band in terms of people involved, both playing more or less neofolk. I slightly preferred Luftwaffe, as they had a bit more power towards the end. And noisy elements.
Derniere Volonte (french military pop): More than decent, especially in light of the less-than-ideal show I saw at New Year but they are becoming more and more of a synth-pop band with each release, which sadly also means they are becoming more generic and less satisfying.

At this point I started to suspect that I just wasn't in a neofolk mood and would probably not enjoy Of the wand and the moon, so I relocated to the big Agra Hall and watched Diary of Dreams. Which was pretty good, a rock concert putting me in mind of my teens, slightly cheesy but very well done. And there were pyros! :-D I rocked my little socks off and had a bloody good time doing it.


Subheim and Legion I didn't really see. I was too late for the first and too bored by the latter. This is not to say that they weren't good, just that I really wasn't in a mood for electronic drone industrial then.
Bad Sector did something similar but with more of a noise/glitch slant and an interesting back projection.
Tzolk'in did something similar to Cut Hands but used live tribal drums and a more melodic basis. I think there was something about the Mayan Apocalypse that they tried to communicate but the music would have been good without it, too. Think a chill-out version of Winterkälte.

Download/Dead Voices on Air: Techno/IDM with some abstract elements and distorted vocals once DVOA entered (after about an hour). I like DVOA and I like Skinny Puppy but this left me mostly cold.

Näo: Best new discovery of the festival in my book. Beat-orientated electronic music with krautrock/shoegazer influences. Had me and the Kuppelhalle bouncing in no time and left us literally screaming for more.
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Right,
as the "what did you blog about X years ago?"-meme seems all the rage at the moment and as I love a good meme, here is my take on it.

Here we go:
18/5/2011: Looking at/celebrating the fact that I had been a member of Dreamswidth for two years then. Hey, that means that there is another anniversary coming up soon. :-)
The post of the day on another platform celebrated the fact that there was a quite nice picture of me wearing impossibly tight silver trousers while being nibbled at by a woman my teen self would certainly approve of.

14/5/2010: A mini-rant about I discussion I had had some time before and aggravation about it not having gone to my liking in the slightest. Or rather about the feeling that the other person had simply decided to consider my opinions invalid for reasons I can only speculate on. I love a good discussion but I really hate disrespectful people.
Something that really hasn't changed.


11/5/2009: Oh, hang on, so I have been doing this for more than three years now, haven't I? Apparently I have. This was the first post here and oh, how enthusiastic and naive was I back then.
Other platforms describe film trailers I had seen the day before. "Terminator Salvation" turned out to be alrightish but nothing to write home about.

May 2008: Thoughts about what horror films might have inspired and influenced my younger self and the start of a new job (and the non-start of another). Also, annoyance about my social life, which unbeknown to me was about to be shaken up something rotten in the near future. People lost, people gained, friendships tested, scars being left.
15/5/2007: Two posts addressing the BBC Panorama special on Scientology broadcast the night before. Scientology were a major topic in Berlin in those days having opened their new German Org half a year earlier. My views have not changed since then.
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Dieser Vortrag sieht nicht uninteressant aus:

Frauenbibliothek MONAliesA e.V.

Haus der Demokratie (4. OG)
Bernhard-Göring-Straße 152
Straßenbahnlinien 9, 10, 11 / Buslinien 70, 89, 100, 107
Haltestelle „Connewitzer Kreuz”

Sonnabend, 26. Mai 2012, 16.00 Uhr

Vortrag:Brothers of Metal? - Gender, Ästhetik und Performance im Heavy Metal
Referentin: Imke von Helden (M.A.), Institut für Skandinavistik, Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg


ION: Der Plan für dieses Jahr ist jetzt online und SO und ich haben schon grob ausgearbeitet, wann wir wo sein werden. Einige Konzerte besuchen wir sogar zusammen. ;-)
Aufregend, alles so aufregend. :-)
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I'm not really one for zoos. For a while, I justified this to myself with ethical concerns but truth be told I am probably just not all that interested in walking round a park looking at animals suffering from cabin fever. Or be surrounded by hordes of children screaming for attention.
Still, people change, don't they? The SO is very keen on zoos and animals (less so on children) and so it happened that in the past month we visited both of Berlin's zoos. I also made a day of visiting two of Stralsund's marine museums while the SO was out clothes-shopping with mother. In other words, I have done more animal-related activities in the last month than I did in the decade preceding it. And you know what? It was actually quite nice.

The Tierpark of East Berlin, true to its name, is more of a park with the animals at times almost hidden between the bushes, while West Berlin's Zoologischer Garten architectually looks very 70s but has a few more special areas like a huge Aquarium and a section for nocturnal animals.
Not sure if it is really possible to say which one I preferred, except maybe that I really wanted to see Gorillas, which could only be found in the Zoologischer Garten. It was a very bored looking gorilla, which was more than made up for by the frantic excitement of the visitors. Insert your own "You really couldn't tell which side of the glass the true cage was."-joke here.
There also was an orang-utan who had clearly resisted having its fur cut for quite a while now, making it look like a cross between Cousin Itt and a particularly extreme Greebo. Indeed, the SO remarked that it that was really lacking were the dreadlocks.
Sloths can go quite fast when they want to, by the way. Normally they just don't bother. And a laughing hippo is a most imposing, not to say frightening, sound. True story.

The Ozeaneum Stralsund also kicked some major arse on account of hosting not one but two giant aquariums, the larger of which contains around nine million litres of water as well as a shark, several giant turtles and fucking entire shoals of fish. So you stand there and stare up at an aquarium the size of a building and hope that this will not be the moment for the glass to break. Needless to say that I do not recommend being on any sort of psychoactive substance while visiting this museum, unless you really want to know why H.P. Lovecraft felt so iffy about marine life.

Other things I learned that day:
The Basking Shark is the second largest fish in the world reaching a length of about 12 meters (ca. 40 ft.). During sex the male ejaculates 16 litres of semen.
In the Ozeaneum they show you how much that is. And add a visual aid showing the average human ejaculation, just for comparison. I'm certain that it intimidates the average man.

Male octopi also have a special tentacle with which they implant what was described as a "sperm bullet" into the female.
Second dates must be fun.

Also: Grey seals. They sit there and they look cute, fluffy and big-eyed. After seeing half a dozen of these, you feel this overwhelming urge of wanting to cuddle something ASAP, preferably one of these cute, fluffy things.

Then you reach the exhibit showing these fast and sharp-toothed predators hunting and you're instantly happy that you are not a fish. :-S

Horseshoe crabs aren't crabs, btw, they are spiders. Huge, armoured spiders.

After watching the starfish for a while, their mouths sucking at the glass and finding out that sometimes severed limbs can even regenerate a new central section, while sea cumcumber have a way of evading predators by ejecting their internal organs at said predator (yes, these, too, can be regenerated), you start to understand Lovecraft so much better.

Don't get me started on the fish that did a wonderful impression of the campest mincing queen imaginable while harboring poison-spikes of untold agonies and the fish whose bite is more dangerous than a cobra's and who looks like a motherfucking stone! I knew that there was supposed to be a fish there! I was looking for it! It still took me five minutes to find it! And it kills!

What was more entertaining was the fact that the signs describing the creatures inside the tanks often also made mention of how good their flesh tastes.
"This world is full of wonderful, varied creatures. Many of them absolutely delicious."
This motivated the SO to ask several times throughout our Tierpark-visit whether we had eaten the animal we were currently looking at yet. The wonders of living in a city where you can get african cuisine.
von_geisterhand: (Default)
Andererseits kann man wahrscheinlich auch davon ausgehen, daß weder das Schlossparktheater noch Dieter Hallervorden sonderlich an den weniger naturalistischen und doppelbödigeren Theateransätzen interessiert sind und die ganze Sache wohl doch eher aus Faulheit entstanden ist. Es ist schon erstaunlich, wie klar man eine Sache manchmal sieht, wenn sie erst auf der Titelseite eines Springerkäseblatts steht.
Ein angemalter Mann ist ein Zeichen, nur was will es uns hier sagen?

Hasi 2

Jan. 5th, 2012 06:20 pm
von_geisterhand: (Default)
Jemand hört mir offenbar zu. Oder hat ähnliche Gedanken. Auf jeden Fall wurde das kürzlich erwähnte Plakat gegen Tiermast mit den "Playboy"-Bunnies in der Zwischenzeit ausführlich kommentiert (mit zusätzlichen "Gefällt mir" von diversen weitere Leuten). Allerdings hätte es mich auch gewundert, wenn dem nicht so gewesen wäre. Schließlich ist ganz in der Nähe eine Plakatwand, die schon solange wie ich die Gegend frequentiere von einer Reizwäschemarke besetzt wird. Und genau solange dauert es auch meist nur wenige Tage bis jemand die Plakate mit Slogans, die sich über den empfundenen Sexismus auslassen, dekoriert. Keine der Parteien macht Anstalten aufzugeben.

Andererseits, wo sonst sind Bilder von Frauen in Reizwäsche so angebracht wie auf Werbeplakaten für letztere? Da stelle ich mir schon eher die Frage, was der ursprüngliche Gedankengang dahinter mit halbnackten Frauen für Tierschutz zu werben, war? Bei PETAs Anti-Pelz-Kampagne stand ja mal eine klare Logik dahinter, aber hier? Ist das nur der Wortwitz mit den Bunnies oder was? Tierschutz und Vegetarismus kann man damit bewerben, daß man an das Mitgefühl der Betrachter appelliert oder darüber, daß sich die Betrachter besser/edler/elitärer fühlen wollen, aber geiler? Soll das so funktionieren, wie wenn man in einem Club einer Frau, die man total heiß findet, anspricht und sie erwähnt, daß sie Vegetarierin ist, worauf man dann natürlich gleich sagt, daß man ja eigentlich auch nur Gemüse isst, aber natürlich nur aus rein fleischlichen Motiven. Soll das so funktionieren? Soll man sich denken: "Hey, wenn ich dieses Jahr keine Hasis esse, kommen die Bunnies dann auch zu mir und möchten sofort mit mir schlafen!"?
Das klappt nicht!

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