Nerd Meetup

I’ve appointed a personal independent counsel to observe hairline security. I suspect there is serious receding going on, but I’m reluctant to declare the onset of balding. Jimmy Carter and his team will be helicoptering in later to assess the situation.

For the first time ever, I met an online friend/a blogger I read – in person. Lilia Efimova aka Mathemagenic, rolled into Amsterdam from Pisa yesterday evening, and we immersed ourselves in Tibetan joy. They had the best tea of all time that I swear had dinosaur eggs in it. Rawr.

While sometimes you might meet an online friend in person and somehow you might not get on well, hardly the case with Lilia. Not only did we talk about bloggers and blogs that fascinate us, but we also let our nerdlyness hang out she shared the joy of her tablet pc with me. Tablet pc… that thing was sweet as sweet can be. I once thought they were some silly microsoft idea, the spruce-moose of computers, but NEE. This little puppy was sweet, portable, and downright sexy(if machines “do it” for you). I was initially worried that she would not want to talk about blogs because so much of her worktime is spent doing so, but no sir e, she was happy to shoot the shit about her adventures with Scandinavian bloggers in Sussex and her work related to knowledge management (km).

Overall, the dinner and blogwalk gave me a renewed sense of what I’m doing, why I do it, and that I’m not a complete freak. Well.. a partial one, but certainly not alone. Nevertheless, I know that I definitely want to pursue post grad studies in this realm, not to mention teach the people – spread the word.

Part of the conversation yesterday involved relationships between bloggers and readers, especially between individuals that are traditionally isolated from each other. As I read through Morgan Spurlock‘s blog this morning, I recognized that very situation. His documentary, Supersize Me, continues to float around the world, and has started appearing in schools across the US. But that’s not what gets me, what gets me is that Morgan is the director, not to mention the star, yet he blogs for all to read about how things are going with the film and his own daily life. He also includes his adventures, hopes, worries, trials and tribulations. Not everyone might see his blog the way I do, but you have to admit, its a far cry from a time where documentaries or any film is made and we as an audience have zero interaction with the director and understand nothing of who he/she is, besides the DVD extras which also changed film watching quite a bit. Anyway this idea of directors or authors or journalists blogging presents an interesting new arena connecting people, to some extent, who in the past would never have been connected. What do I sound like I’m preaching? In that case, pass the collection plate around.

And lest I forget= Happy Anniversary Soweto, place that gave us Mandela, Tutu, and countless others who fought and suffered for a better future. I might go out and buy Cry Freedom just to get more into the occasion.

Today’s Sounds: Iron & Wine – Our Endless Numbered Days

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Weep Kryptonians

Kal-El, son of Jor-El has died. This is not the first time either. But don’t worry, because the internet and wikipedia will ensure that Krypton and its sons are forever remembered.

Derrida on the other hand, only now am I trying to understand him more. And I do appreciate what I understand of his philosophy in terms of language and word use. The words I type have more than just the meaning I think they have, they are multilayered with a historical and cultural connections. I think people forget that when they’re so busy being angry about so called political-correctness. As I’ve always said, it shouldn’t be called p.c., it should just be called thinking and considering the layered meaning of your words, before you speak. Actually I’m a Derrida idiot, but this is what he always reminds me of…. where’s my philosophical love in the Berkshires to help me out? …Amsterdam has never been the same without her.

Toronto’s number one chef in exile cooked dinner for some old and new Amsterdam personalities last night. Never has this city seen such a creative and loving chef, the man suffers for his art. Lucky us that he decided to come set up shop in the Pijp for a spell. Naturally I thought to bring the Torontonienne along, I mean.. who could resist introducing Canadians in Amsterdam to each other. I tried my best to listen-in on their interactions, observing Canuks in the wild. She will be guestblogging this weekend, by the way. (I hope) Yes, I shall be in Brussels spending quality family time. But I digress, over dinner we discussed the uniqueness of New Zealand, Australian Accents, and Canadian accents, which I am unable to reproduce via a blog. FOR Now.

Oh and – spy report – – spy report – spoke to my insider at the EU, this Croatia thing is a definite go it seems. I thought it was only an idea, but no no, they’re definitely going ahead with plans for Croatia to join the EU in something like ’07 or ’15.

I’ve never been there, but I have many Croatian friends here in Amsterdam, like the laid-back and fun-lovin cook at Foodism. (Oude Leilestraat Plug Plug) From his stories and what I read in the news, I’ll be very glad to have Croatia join the fun. I was thinking about it the other day, technically now, I could travel to Hungary and I am effectively a pseudo-citizen, in that I am a European Citizen. Going to Hungary could be like, me as an American going to.. New Orleans or something. Ok not the same… but I had you going for a second there.

Today’s Sounds: RFI Musique – I think its Baba Maal right now

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Get Your Ball On

The fantasy basketball draft is in two-weeks. All day long I’ve been in on the bm ranch running laps, dribbling, and studying plays. That’s right, you heard correct, I’m participating in the Busblog Fantasy Basketball League. And while I don’t know much about who’s good in the NBA anymore, I know plenty about fantasizing, so I think I’m a contended this year. My strategy… I have none. But I’m from New Jersey, so I’ll favor any and all New Jersey players in the draft. Also, as a boy living abroad, I have a soft-spot for foreign players, so that tall Chinese Center guy… you’re welcome on my team. Same goes to you Serbian guy who plays for Sacramento. My team name you ask? The Stoned Tourists. That’s correct.. the ferocious beasts who invade Amsterdam on a daily basis… you wouldn’t believe their abilities while under the influence of the good herb. The whole league looks like fun, which is to be expected under the watchful eye of commissioner Tony Pierce. Two weeks from today, mark it down – the madness begins.

I really like this phone conversation between Jamie and Raymi. Makes me want to wander the streets of NYC like old times. And generally these are some of the hippest bloggers on the block, hence, I recommend them to all of you in readerland.

My review on Afghan elections will come tomorrow. But there won’t be much to say. Most of the parties have called the process null and void, while foreigners are saying it’s good as gold. Karzai is probably hiding in a bulletproof bathroom of a bombproof house, the a heavily guarded biodome where he has preserved all the necessary species to sustain life for 5 to 8 years.

Bitch PhD is rockin shiny new rss syndication. Because I am the Robin Hood of RSS, only I don’t rob the rich… and I don’t do much poor feeding either.

Today’s Sounds: Cursive – Domestica

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This ol park 1

Welcome blogfriends, to the first edition of my new friday segment, THIS OL PARK, where bicyclemark reviews an Amsterdam park for a good hour or so, depending on my workload.

Judging by the duck poop under my sauconys, today’s visit must have been to the recently renovated WESTERPARK. With the accompaniment of Kirsten Dunst’s twin sister, we rode figure eights all over that piece, and we visited the Westergasfabriek(awesome website), which was the gas plant of Amsterdam back in the day, now its a hip-cool café and live venue. The part we both liked best were the plentiful broken windows of so many buildings. After that we moved on to admire a zen garden, which looked completely out of place yet lovely. Then there was a bit of admiring of graffiti, children’s swings, flora and fauna, and protest posters.

We were unable to come to a conclusion about how female pine trees and male pine trees “get-it-on” to produce cones. I mean, what if they’re planted far from each other? Is there a pine tree singles bar to encourage a bit of pollenation?

The last segment of our wandering consisted of stopping at Big Ali’s Sportclub, a graffitied up shack blasting music from a small stereo, and with four potted, non-blooming new guinea impatients on a table. (what?… I worked in gardening.) Big A apparently has lots of sports equipment in his shack, and provides the good people of Westerpark with the goods they need to hit the green ball with the cat-gut woven racket. Looked like good fun.

Overall we made the following conclusions:

– Westerpark, with its modern design side featuring large open fields and zen gardens, mixed with the old-style European parkishness, is a microcosm of the struggle in Amsterdam and other cities worldwide. This struggle is between the old- do it yourself style, where people squat apartments and run sports clubs out of shacks, and the new if-you-got-money-you’re-welcome style, where fancy designed cafés cater to the wealthy and recreations of the hanging gardens of Babylon 3000 are commonplace. This doesn’t, however, answer the question of which of these will win. So far, at westerpark, they seem to live side-by-side together. That is, until a duck goes over and poops on the futuristic kiddypark.

(note: more park photos on the buzznet photoblog)


G.Love is the greatest, but he’s definitely too into his groupies.

– Yes, you need to develop nerves of steel to ride through the center of Amsterdam, then you will achieve cycling nirvana.

– And my own personal conclusion, Kirsten Dunst twin’s digi-cam is in fact the first primitive digital that cavepeople first developed.

I lost bigtime on my Nobel Prize prediction. Who knew that would actually pick an African Woman and an environmental activist as well. Guess the Nobel Committee sometimes does pick’em right. My favorite headline related to this was in the Guardian which says “Tree Planter Wins Peace Prize.” How flattering. I can imagine if I win it, the headline will read: “Slacker-Leftist Wins Award.”

On that note, let’s go do some town-hall debating- my place, 3am.

Today’s Sounds: Stephan Eicher – Taxi Europe (this Italian-Swiss song is addicting)

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