What a Difference a Day Makes

September 2, 2010 § Leave a comment

Towel with the words "Don't Panic" o...

Image via Wikipedia

With horror I learn that today apparently is Beverly Hills 90210 Day.

How can that be?

Don’t get me wrong, I’m really all for celebrating anniversaries, for rememberences in honour of memorable persons, things and events.

But Beverly Hills 90210? Of all things?

I can see the need to commemorate Bloomsday (June 16th), I carry my towel on every Towel Day (May 25th) and I tolerate the existence of a Hobbit Day (September 22nd), a Pi Day (March 14th), a System Administrators Appreciation Day (last Friday in July), a World UFO Day (July 2nd) and countless others.

But the news that there should actually be a Beverly Hills 90210 Day to me suggests the custom has left its best days behind.

A day to celebrate an American teenager TV series? Where is the Randall and Hopkirk Day? The EastEnders and the Coronation Street Day? And aren’t we entitled at least to a Doctor Who Day? No, make that a National Doctor Who Week!

And what about Discworld? James Bond? Duffy Duck? And all those other persons and events, films, works and series that deserve to be remembered? Is it too much to ask that these get their very own days? If 90210 already has one? Mind you, 90210!

This definitely asks for a parliamentary enquiry and immediate governmental action!


Puzzles and Crosswords

September 2, 2010 § Leave a comment

The first crossword puzzle, created by Arthur ...

Image via Wikipedia

From BBC news page:

People who do puzzles and crosswords may stave off dementia longer but experience a more rapid decline once the disease sets in, a study suggests.

What bothers is the part about the more rapid decline. So one can prolong one’s decline by puzzling but at the price of a deeper fall? Is that a good deal?

Basically, there would be two alternatives. No crosswords, no quarrels about puzzles and an early but steady receding of one’s cerebral abilities once the dreadful loss of personality sets in.

Or the other possibility, a life peppered with crosswords and with hours spent brooding over all versions of Brain Age. Long hours. Piling up to days, weeks and even months of heavy duty brainpower workout. All that to keep the big oblivion at bay. But when it finally hits it hits hard.

Not much of a choice, is it?

Still, the later the better. That’s the only logic answer to the question. After all, puzzling is also supposed to keep your wits generally in top gear. So the time spent on it is really an investment into old age, regardless if one happens to be susceptible to dementia.

So, where is that crossword from the Times? Or does doing one’s tax return have the same effects? I prefer the Times crossword to the SA100 any day.

Come to think of it, there should be a rapid decline of dementia in the UK.

Hell is other people

September 2, 2010 § Leave a comment


Image via Wikipedia

There is something very sad in the way the city is filling again with people after the summer holidays. For a few weeks we had the illusion of there being actually enough space in this town for its inahabitants. Enough parking space, enough roads and houses and flats and all.

Supermarkets weren’t crammed with people all doing their shopping in the same half hour of lunch break. The traffic receded to an extent where you actually made progress in your car.  One could walk through town centre and enjoy it. And even if the weather this year wasn’t anything to write home about, summer made up for it by getting some of the most insufferable fellow citizens out of town and out of our lives for a few precious weeks.

Of course there were the crowds of tourists cluttering up the streets too. But these at least were new faces, not the half-million of old ones you saw every day the year round. And they either fled town after their Europe-in-12-days tour entered their coaches again around five in the afternoon. Or they had the decency to remain in their tourist ghetto camps from Hilton or Holiday Inn and not disturb the natives more than necessarily.

Now the tourists are gone and the neighbours are back. The usual day-to-day madness has recaptured our lives and our hell, the others, keeps bugging us again.

Time for a holiday.

Fighting for Summer

September 1, 2010 § Leave a comment

Elisabethmarkt München im Herbst Biergarten - ...

Image by digital cat  via Flickr

There can’t be many more depressing sights of summer than one of these City Beaches lying deserted in the cold rain of a September day. The first leaves are already piling up on the wet grounds, the tables and deck chairs. A faux palm tree decoration is rotting away and the student bartender and the waitress are boredly chatting under the awning of the plywood shed while brazilectro muzak squeezes itself from the speakers of a cheap mini stereo.

The air is so cold that one can’t be sitting relaxed outdoors and the wind and the wet surface of the chair make the experience decidedly uncomfortable. The short menue featuring beverages and fast food is ennobled by the misleading presence of six or seven outragously costly “cocktails”, all mixed from the cheapest ingredients at what passes for a bar, right beside a hot pan of chips and a microwave. The Pina Colada coming from this den has an unhealthy touch of green to its pale appearence, the Tequila Sunrise looks like an atomic wasteground and the Caipirinha has quietly died of homesickness. I order a beer and am glad to see a closed bottle coming, which the waitress opens at my table.

I look at the people going by, most of them in a hurry to get out of the nasty weather. The beer is cold, but actually not much colder than the day itself. The passers-by look at me with a mixture of amazement and what I take at first for envy. Only after a while I realize it’s not admiration of me defying the end of summer, but pity.

That’s when I surrender. I put the money on the table, pull up the collar of my macintosh and walk home.

I’ll fight for summer in December.


September 1, 2010 § Leave a comment

Paris from Montmartre

Image by Madebycedric via Flickr

to Reflections in a Double Bourbon. Reflections coming in that blue hour, when the first, or second even, drink is waiting before us. When the light of day has dwindled away so far that its remains no longer illuminate any more and the world pauses for a short moment on the brink of darkness.

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