Monday, 13 December 2010

Ideas for next London trip

Stroll Portobello Market again

Join a guided tour of Wembley Stadium

Go to the theatre, possibly a fringe/off-West End one

…also, watch a play in Shakespeare’s Globe

Join a day trip to Stonehenge, Bath and maybe Windsor (plenty of providers, for example this one or:)

Monday, 22 November 2010

Clasen Coaching & Consulting — the final ad

Click on the photo to see the ad in a higher resolution

So this is how it will look, the advertisement in the programme for the play ‘Jane Eyre’, which opens in Luxembourg next week.

A huge thank you to each and everyone of you who gave frank, insightful and useful feedback.

The draft ad certainly was subject of debate, both on this blog and on Facebook (not so much on LinkedIn though). It made for a highly interesting and self-reflective process. And I'd like to share some of the conclusions.

The picture

The photo used for the ad turned out to be somewhat controversial. Most agreed that it has a relaxed feel. Whether this is good or bad depends — as everything else — on the viewer. Criticism included ‘it looks like a tourist brochure’. And that I look like a dreamy (one even said ‘sleepy’) New Age hippie. The most creative comment was that I ought to look more assertive.

Other people — and I'll invite those to a party later on :) — really liked that it is ‘so me’. Not in the sense that I am a sleepily dreamy New Age hippie but that the picture expresses genuineness and ‘what you see is what you get’. In other words, it is honest — one of the virtues that characterises a good coach.

The more technical perfectionists also pointed out that the picture of me looks inserted and blurred/in low resolution. Not untrue either, as I faded the background in order for the text to be readable, and enlarged ‘me’.

The text

Most people liked the catchphrase ‘Find your horizons. Then reach them.’ and felt it went well with the photo.

On the other hand, the quote from ‘Jane Eyre’ and especially the sentence following it: ‘Today, he would have called his coach.’ led to confusion. On Facebook I had not explained the context — basic mistake.

As the ad will appear only in the aforementioned theatre programme, those who see it will know what the quote means. If they pay attention to the play, that is :). Otherwise I would not have used that quote, or at least not the concluding sentence ‘Today, he would have called his coach.’

The very useful technical suggestions included: ‘clarify that you're a life coach’, ‘make the word 'coach' more visible’, ‘link the quote to the 'Today…' sentence by using the same font’, and ‘eliminate the full stops, 'cause that's German’…

There were also a few who did not think the text was sufficiently visible and suggested I change colours. Others loved the colour scheme.


So what did I choose to change? Well, first of all, I chose to keep the photo. It is true that the confusion argued by some was mainly due to the ‘Jane Eyre’ quote and the horizon thing coming from two different idea worlds, as a professionel Graphic Artist and former colleague pointed out.

As 1) my hair colour is different these days because of the play, 2) I am not photogenic on portraits especially (yes, I did try), and 3) I did not have instant access to a good camera, it turned out not to be an option to change the portrait within this short deadline.

Then I could have left out the photo altogether, skipped the horizon part (including catchphrase) and used just the ‘Jane Eyre’ reference. But a photo does catch people's attention much more than words, plus this particular photo provides a surprising contrast inside a theatre programme. So people will notice. Criterion number one — check.

Conclusion: I used the same photo but with me in the original size, meaning smaller than in the draft (thank you, Frederik!).

Textwise, I added ‘Life and Career Coach’ (thank you, Pierre-Yves) and also chose to centre my contact details. After a lot of moving around, deleting, re-inserting, re-moving around and changing and re-changing colours between my logo's green and blue and the nature-brown from the photo, I finally ended up keeping both the catchphrase, the quote (never thought of removing it for this particular ad) and the ‘Today…’ sentence. But —

— I emphasised the quote, making it more of the eyecatcher. In order to clarify and link it to ‘Today, he would have called his coach’, I also added the first name of the character who says the quote, and I changed ‘Today…’ to the same font. Except for the word ‘coach’, which I (thanks, Maruška) emphasised by leaving it in the same font as the (now former) catchphrase and my contact details.

This and the added ellipsis (‘…’) should link it directly to ‘Find your horizons. Then reach them.’, which I instead moved down right before my contact details as a kind of slogan (and therefore had to keep the full stops as it is now on one line). I could have left out this phrase but then — again — I should leave out the photo too, and most people did like the slogan. Which is why I will probably use it in future ads, maybe as a real catchphrase like in the draft, and might therefore as well use it in my first ad. So people will recognise. Criterion number two — check.

Like it or not. Bad ads are better than indifferent ones. And this one certainly did not leave anyone indifferent. Criterion number three — check.

So it won't be the last time I encourage you to contribute with your criticisms, your ideas …and your praise. I appreciated it, all of it. Thanks again! Spread the word!! And do come see ‘Jane Eyre’, so you will know when Edward Rochester says those famous words.

Bjørn Clasen
Clasen Coaching & Consulting

Friday, 19 November 2010

Clasen Coaching & Consulting — draft ad

Click on the picture for a better resolution.

Tell me what you think of the ad!
Post a comment below — choose one adjective that you think describes it, and one verb telling me how the ad could be better.

And just be honest — no ‘niceness’ just in order to be nice :)

I appreciate your feedback!!

©2010 Bjørn Clasen

Thursday, 2 September 2010

Mørkets manglende gråd

»Disse øjeblikke, der forbandt natten med daggryet, var lange og mørke. Hvis bare jeg havde kunnet græde, havde alt været meget nemmere. Men hvad skulle jeg græde over? Hvem skulle jeg græde over? Jeg var alt for selvoptaget til at græde over andre og for gammel til at græde over mig selv.«
Haruki Murakami
i »Sønden For Grænsen Og Vesten For Solen«
(Mette Holms oversættelse fra japansk)

Sunday, 15 August 2010

Great entrepreneurs are willing to be vulnerable

‘To embrace the misfit in oneself is to be vulnerable. It is to forsake the easy acceptance that comes with fitting in and to instead be fortified by a kind of love, really. A love of life, a love of wonder, and, ultimately, a sustaining love for oneself.’
Dan Pallotta
in his blogpost ‘Misfit Entrepreneurs’ on Harvard Business Review

Tuesday, 10 August 2010

The Trend Of Encouraging Overeducation

‘Even top-tier MBA degrees often say more about the desire to have an important credential
than about any greater capacity to be a good leader or manager.’

Michael Schrage
in ‘Higher Education Is Overrated; Skills Aren't’
on Harvard Business Review

Saturday, 7 August 2010

Explore Your Landscape Of Life

‘Life isn’t a project to be completed; it is an unknowable landscape to be explored. A 24-year-old can’t sit down and define the purpose of life in the manner of a school exercise because she is not yet deep enough into the landscape to know herself or her purpose. That young person — or any person — can’t see into the future to know what wars, loves, diseases and chances may loom. She may know concepts, like parenthood or old age, but she doesn’t really understand their meanings until she is engaged in them.’
David Brooks
from ‘The Summoned Self’ — opinion in The New York Times

Wednesday, 4 August 2010

Navnedigt I

Tilegnet mestervrøvleren Halfdan Rasmussen.

Peter hedder Anders
og Børge hedder Bent.
Ole hedder Benny
men mangler lidt talent.
Freddy hedder Arne
og Bjarne er et snøvl.
At digte kræver ofte
at sig’ en masse vrøvl.

© Bjørn Clasen 2010

Sunday, 4 July 2010

What Is Love?

It is about giving or at least wanting to give. Most can agree on that. And after that? Hoping to receive? Wanting to receive? Expecting to receive? Demanding to receive? This discussion is about just that.

It started when I posted a comment on the article ‘Neva A. Lockhart on why Unconditional Love is a Lie’. Ms Lockhart then wrote back to me:

‘To know what love looks and feel like one would have to have all or most of their expectations met. This gives a person the ability to identify for themselves what their true love is. It is unrealistic, and unreasonable to think that True Love has no expectations, when we love we expect to be loved in return, even our pets expect a loving pat on the head, should we as humans expect anything less?’

My thoughts on the matter are that I don't disagree with either of Ms Lockhart or Saint-Exupéry, or rather I don't fully agree with either of them.

I do not believe that, in loving, one expects something in return. One hopes for something in return. And one's readiness to love can be badly shaken if love is unrequited.

That, in turn, leads to shielding oneself against love without expectations …the question is then whether love with expectations, as opposed to love with 'just' the hope that is a part of the feeling of love almost by definition, is actually really love or more like admiration, affection, or perhaps affiliation.

Love is a feeling, it is not something you can create or destroy in yourself. As with all emotions, you either feel it or you don't. That is the purity of love. And in that respect, I believe that talking about 'unrealistic' and 'unreasonable' is imposing something on love that it cannot be fit into: sense (in the meaning of 'reason').

Love very often is not sensible, does not make any sense. Even when it does, it is not sense that has caused the feeling to be born or to persist. Likewise, it is not sense that makes the feeling of love disappear.

So when we love, we give. When we give, we hope for something to return. Some call it 'invest'. Unlike other kinds of investment, we do not expect anything in return. We hope, though it is not the hope that drives us, that drives the feeling. The feeling is just …there.

Bjørn Clasen

Monday, 14 June 2010

Nogle af det danske landsholds højdepunkter

For at varme lidt op til VM og troen på, at alt kan lade sig gøre, har jeg fundet nogle klip frem fra rød-hvide stjernestunder. Nyd dem. Og må vi få mere af den slags bold og grund til jubel i Sydafrika!

Vi blev for resten også europamestre engang…

Wednesday, 5 May 2010

Underholdende selv for uindviede:
Anmeldelse af Dansk-Græsk Ordbog

Dansk-Græsk Ordbog
af Rolf Hesse, Patakis Publications, 2008
(distribueres i Danmark af Museum Tusculanums Forlag)

Af Caspar Curdt-Christiansen

Tilbage i begyndelsen af 1990’erne studerede jeg græsk, altså nygræsk (det skal man altid præcisere for lige netop dette sprogs vedkommende), og ét blandt mange problemer, man som græskstuderende havde at kæmpe med på den tid, var manglen på dansk-græske/græsk-danske ordbøger. Der fandtes ganske vist nogle rejseparlører og ordlister, der vel lige netop var tilstrækkelige til, at man kunne bestille en ouzo på en bar, men for ethvert behov, der lå ud over det allermest prosaiske, måtte man ty til f.eks. engelsk-græske/græsk-engelske ordbøger. Stor var således min glæde – og overraskelse – da en af mine studiekammerater en dag kom forbi min studenterhybel i Thessaloniki og stolt fremviste en rigtig dansk-nygræsk ordbog: Rolf Hesses Dansk-Nygræsk Ordbog (Munksgaard, 1995); 28 000 opslagsord og 20 000 faste udtryk!

Sidenhen, i 1998, kom der også en nygræsk-dansk ordbog til (som jeg i parentes bemærket selv har medvirket til), udgivet på det græske forlag Patakis – og det er selvsamme forlag, der står for udgivelsen af denne nye gennemreviderede udgave af Dansk-Nygræsk Ordbog, der til lejligheden er blevet omdøbt til ”Dansk-Græsk Ordbog” uden det præciserende ”ny-” nævnt ovenfor. Lad os håbe, det ikke giver anledning til alt for mange fejlindkøb blandt landets klassiske filologer ...

Hvad er så det nye i den nye udgave? Ved første øjekast ser man, at forlaget Patakis’ valg af papirkvalitet, indbinding og typografi er bevaret, og det er faktisk ikke dårligt. Sammenlignet med førsteudgaven fra Munksgaard giver den nye udgave et solidt indtryk; hvordan den ser ud efter fem års intensiv brug, vil tiden vise, men det virker, som om den er beregnet på at blive brugt. Samtidig har den en luftig typografi med øget kontrast, der gør teksten behagelig at læse, men som naturligvis også koster plads. Således er sidetallet forøget med ca. 20 %, om end formatet sågar er lidt større. At ordbogen er blevet større, bekræftes af Museum Tusculanums pressemeddelelse, hvori følgende står at læse:

”Efter at have været udsolgt i nogle år er Rolf Hesses Dansk-Græsk Ordbog nu udkommet i en gennemrevideret, forøget og illustreret udgave. Ordbogen indeholder ca. 30 000 opslagsord med mange brugseksempler og idiomatiske udtryk; desuden en græsk grammatik med en udførlig liste over uregelmæssige verber, geografiske navne m.v. Bogen henvender sig både til danskere og grækere.”

Gennemrevideret, forøget og illustreret: Lad os indledningsvis se på disse tre i omvendt rækkefølge.


Allerede i forbindelse med udgivelsen af nygræsk-dansk ordbog fik Rolf Hesse den glimrende idé at lade en række svært oversættelige ord illustrere, f.eks. kunne den danske bruger se nydelige små tegninger af en bouzouki, en ikonostase eller andre særligt græske fænomener fra musikkens, den græsk-ortodokse kirkes eller gastronomiens verden. I den nye græsk-danske ordbog gentages succes’en, og den græske bruger kan således få forklaret ved hjælp af en tegning, hvad en pølsevogn, en nisse eller en lur (altså musikinstrumentet) er. En fremragende idé, synes jeg; det er egentlig besynderligt, at denne fremgangsmåde ikke er mere udbredt inden for leksikografien.


Ifølge forordet er der tilføjet over tusind nye opslagsord og mange nye udtryk (f.eks. inden for informationsteknologi og mobiltelefoni). Samtidig anføres det, at ”nogle forældede ord og indtryk er fjernet eller reduceret, f.eks. inden for telegrafi”.
Ord som mobiltelefon og modem var der i forvejen, mens sms, hjemmeside og harddisk er kommet til – i selskab med verberne downloade og uploade. Ordene cd og cd-rom er blevet tilføjet, men moderniseringen har ikke strakt sig til dvd og dvd-rom, hvilket ellers ville have været nærliggende. Man må også lede forgæves efter usb-nøgle, lydkort eller kortlæser. Til gengæld er de temmelig forældede diskettestation og fjernskriver bevaret.
Andre ord, som der ville være god mening i at have med i en ny og forøget ordbog, men som man må lede forgæves efter er andengenerationsindvandrer, miljøbevidst eller måske grønne afgifter.
En af de sværeste beslutninger, når man laver en ordbog, er som bekendt spørgsmålet om, hvilke ord der skal tages med. Muligvis har det anvendte korpus her ikke været det allermest moderne. På den anden side skal man selvfølgelig også passe på med at fylde en ordbog med alskens døgnfluer, der ryger ud af sproget, lige så hurtigt som de kom ind. Det kan måske forklare, at man skal lede længe efter deciderede slangudtryk i ordbogen. Dog er der en del moderne dagligsprog – hvis man skal udtrykke det diplomatisk – herunder en række af de ord, som angiveligt er de første, skoleelever slår op, når de får en ny ordbog i hånden. Jeg finder det udmærket, at man f.eks. også får den ”moderne” betydning af et ord som rimelig (betydning 3 herunder):

rimelig adj 1. λογικός (~e priser λογικές τιμές), εύλογος 2. (mild) επιεικής (‑ής ‑ές) (en ~ afgørelse μια επιεικής απόφαση) 3. (adv: temmelig) αρκετά· (meget) πολύ ...

Under opslaget fed får vi også at vide, at det i daglig tale kan betyde ”super” – oversat med φανταστικός – og slår man op under røv, får man fuldgode oversættelser af både rend mig i røven, de tog røven på mig og være på røven – så der er taget et vist hensyn til de allermest kurante udtryk af denne art.


Endelig får vi at vide, at ordbogen er gennemrevideret. ”Gennemrevideret” betyder vel, at der dels er blevet luget ud i gamle og forældede udtryk – som nævnt ovenfor – dels at egentlige fejl er blevet rettet. Jeg har med glæde kunnet konstatere, at en af de grimme fejl fra første udgave er blevet rettet: I første udgave kunne man læse sig til, at en billion på græsk ganske rigtigt hedder τρισεκατομμύριο, og at en trillion angiveligt også hedder τρισεκατομμύριο. Denne klassiske oversætterfejl (der formodentlig stammer fra, at der er blevet brugt engelsk-græske ordbøger som ”mellemled”) er i den nye udgave blevet fjernet – ganske enkelt ved at opslagsordet trillion er blevet fjernet, hvilket i øvrigt må siges at være en ganske fornuftig løsning, da man næppe nogensinde får brug for at kunne oversætte så høje tal.

Andre fejl er til gengæld blevet overset. Under opslaget højhed står udtrykket Deres kongelige højhed oversat med η αυτού Υψηλότης, hvilket strengt taget betyder hans kongelige højhed.

Endvidere er der blevet rettet igennem for at tage højde for diverse retskrivningsændringer siden 1995 (en ret omfattende opgave, da Dansk Sprognævn som bekendt ændrer retskrivningen ustandselig). Om end dette ikke er en retskrivningsordbog, så har brugeren en berettiget formodning om, at en nyudgivet ordbog er i overensstemmelse med gældende retskrivning (noget som visse ordbøger ikke gør sig særlig umage med). Således er alle ord indeholdende ”linie” blevet ændret til ”linje”, og ”AIDS” og ”TV” er nu skrevet med lille; til gengæld er ”VVS-installatør” ikke blevet ændret til ”vvs-installatør”.
Det samme gør sig gældende for slåfejlene: Nogle er blevet rettet (f.eks. ινκόγνκιτο til ινκόγκνιτο), mens andre er blevet overset (f.eks. står der under opslagsordet personregister stadig ”folkreregister”). Denne slags slåfejl må vel anses for at høre hjemme i småtingsafdelingen, om end det kan undre, at de ikke er blevet fanget i en stavekontrol. Mere beskæmmende er det, at min arbejdsplads er stavet forkert, og at oversættelsen til græsk heller ikke er anført korrekt: Europaparlamentet staves Europa-Parlamentet, hvis det skal være helt rigtigt, og mens det græske Ευρωκοινοβούλιο måske nok kan findes i avissprog, så er den korrekte titel altså Ευρωπαϊκό Κοινοβούλιο.

Positive/negative punkter

Ud over selve ordbogen (og dens forord) indeholder bogen også en kort gennemgang af både det danske og græske sprogs historie og en kortfattet grammatik for begge sprogs vedkommende. Det kan naturligvis ikke træde i stedet for en egentlig grammatik, men det er fint, at man får det mest basale med her. Endvidere er der en vejledning til ordbogen, hvor man bl.a. får at vide, at de græske substantivers og adjektivers bøjning ikke angives, når de følger de almindelige bøjninger (for substantivernes vedkommende: maskulinum med endelsen -ς, femininum med endelsen -α eller -η, neutrum med endelsen -ι eller -ο; for adjektivernes vedkommende, når endelsen i de tre køn er -ος -η -ο). Dette er en udmærket pladsbesparende foranstaltning, da selv den mest utrænede bruger må formodes at kende de mest almindelige bøjninger. Imidlertid får man ikke altid femininumsformen at vide, selv når endelsen ikke er en af ovennævnte; dette er navnlig problematisk, når det gælder personbetegnelser, der har forskellig endelse afhængig af køn. F.eks. opslagsordet livsnyder:

livsnyder -en -e γλεντζές

Her får vi altså blot én oversættelse med den usædvanlige maskulinumsendelse -ες, men man bliver ladt i stikken, hvis man gerne vil omtale en kvindelig livsnyder. Dette kan især undre med tanke på, at Nygræsk-dansk ordbog under γλεντζές tilføjer (f: γλεντζού). For taxachauffør får vi også kun maskulinumsformen ταξιτζής (jeg har trods alt set kvindelige taxachauffører i Grækenland, om end de næppe er så talrige som de kvindelige livsnydere ...). For ord som læge eller parlamentsmedlem får vi dog også femininumsformerne, hhv. ιατρίνα og βουλευτίνα.

Det er sjældent, at ordbøger er decideret belærende, men en gang imellem er det faktisk på sin plads, og jeg er ganske begejstret over følgende opslag:

(romerskkatolsk med græsk ritus) ελληνοκαθολικός
(fejlagtigt for: græskortodoks) ελληνορθόδοξος

Således hjælpes både den bruger, der rent faktisk er interesseret i den korrekte oversættelse af ”græskkatolsk” (religiøst mindretal, der hovedsageligt findes på de ioniske øer), og den bruger, der egentlig mener ”græskortodoks”.
En yderligere forbedring kunne eventuelt være at tilføje en betydning 3 med slangudtrykket ”græskkatolsk” i betydningen ”ligeglad” ...

På samme vis advares man om falske venner, sådan som det f.eks. ses i opslaget gymnasium:

gymnasi|um -et -er λύκειο (NB! γυμνάσιο betyder skolen fra 7.-9. skoleår)

Et punkt, der kunne forbedres ud fra et leksikografisk synpunkt, er den manglende skelnen mellem oversættelse og forklaring. F.eks. ser opslaget peberkage ud, som følger:

peberkage -n -r είδος μπισκότου (το)

Det kunne foranledige en til at tro, at en peberkage på græsk hedder είδος μπισκότου, men faktisk betyder det blot ”slags småkage” og er således en forklaring snarere end en oversættelse. Her ville det være at foretrække at anføre forklaringer tydeligt, f.eks. med kantede parenteser eller ved at bruge kursiv.
I tilfældet kolonihave derimod får man ikke blot en tegning (med vimpel og det hele), men også en forklaring angivet med ”(kan gengives)”:

kolonihave -n -r (kan gengives) περιβολάκι με σπιτάκι μέσα σε οργανωμένο πάρκο

Her er man ikke i tvivl om, at det er et kulturspecifikt fænomen, der bliver forklaret snarere end egentlig oversat.

Andre lande- eller kulturspecifikke fænomener er forklaret eller præciseret på fyldestgørende vis. Opslaget højesteret ser f.eks. således ud:

højesteret -ten -ter ανώτατο δικαστήριο, τριτοβάθμιο δικαστήριο· (i GR) Άρειος Πάγος

Brugeren får derved to anvendelige oversættelser for ordet højesteret, som kan anvendes til at betegne den danske (eller en hvilken som helst anden ikke-græsk) højesteret, men får samtidig at vide, at den græske højesteret har bevaret den klassiske benævnelse Areopagos. På samme måde kan man under parlament læse sig til, at et parlament hedder κοινοβούλιο, men det græske parlament hedder βουλή. Sådan skal det gøres!

Som sagt henvender ordbogen sig ifølge forordet og Museum Tusculanums pressemeddelelse både til danskere og grækere, og jeg synes, at forfatteren har gjort sig umage med at gøre denne ordbog lige anvendelig for både danskere og grækere, for så vidt angår udvalget af opslagsord, fraser og sætninger. Der er således blevet plads til en del ord, jeg ville opfatte som temmelig gammeldags, og som den danske bruger næppe ville slå op under, men som den græske bruger vil kunne få brug for, f.eks. hvis man læser ældre litteratur. Man kan f.eks. slå op under ikke blot påberåbe sig, men også beråbe sig på. Ligeledes finder man ikke kun det almindelige sæbeskum, men også sæbelud (begge oversættes med σαπουνάδα).
Dog er der ét punkt, hvor grækeren har brug for hjælp, men ikke får den: udtalen af danske ord (der som bekendt kan være temmelig uforudsigelig). Forfatteren gør selv opmærksom på denne mangel i forordet og henviser græske brugere til danske udtaleordbøger (en kort liste er vedlagt).

Derudover synes jeg, det er værd at bide mærke i, at cypriotisk græsk ikke nævnes med et ord. Man er vant til, at man i engelsksprogede ordbøger får oplysninger om sproglige forskelle mellem i hvert fald britisk og amerikansk engelsk. Noget tilsvarende gør sig ikke gældende med cypriotisk græsk her. Man kan naturligvis hævde, at cypriotisk græsk blot er en dialekt, og at der ikke er plads i en bilingval ordbog til dialektale ord, og under alle omstændigheder er det skrevne sprog i Cypern så godt som identisk med det græsk, der skrives i Grækenland. På den anden side er der tale om det sprog, der tales af befolkningen i et selvstændigt land, så det ville måske være på sin plads for visse glosers vedkommende at tilføje, at man i Cypern anvender et andet ord. Ellers kunne man i det mindste skrive et par ord om cypriotisk græsk i forordet.

Alt i alt synes jeg, at en i forvejen god ordbog er blevet endnu bedre. Uanset om man er oversætter, studerende eller blot bor i udlændighed, kan man kun være taknemmelig over, at der mellem to så relativt små sprog findes en så omfattende og vellavet ordbog.

Caspar Curdt-Christiansen
Oversætter, Europa-Parlamentet, Luxembourg

Ansvaret for denne artikel ligger hos forfatteren, og Europa-Parlamentet kan ikke på nogen måde gøres ansvarlig for de meninger, der kommer til udtryk heri.

Friday, 26 February 2010

Danmarks sang til VM i Sydafrika

…kommer Nephew til at stå for ifølge gruppens e-nyhedsbrev i dag.
Jeg forestiller mig, at det kommer til at se ud cirka sådan hér:

Pretoria ligger i Cape Town
Som en ugly duckling
Bli'r vi red and white on countdown
En wannabe Darth Vader
Morten O. er glad
Og vi' Superliiiiiga
Med et South African World Cup smile
I rød og white står dit navn
Da-dam-da-da-da-dam DAAANMARK…

af Bjørn Clasen, 26/2-10
inspireret af »Re-Sepp-Ten« og forskellige Nephew-sange

Tuesday, 23 February 2010

What an...

‘Some people do not know how to abbreviate 'assistant.' You really should not be abbreviating titles (or much else) on your résumé. To me, it indicates laziness in that you don't want to spend the time typing the extra letters.’
Abby Kohut, president and staffing consultant at Staffing Symphony, LLC
‘Weird things written on résumés’ by Kate Lorenz,

Thursday, 11 February 2010

The Sin City Brewing Comapany's great logo

This is an example of a great logo. It's fun, it's catchy — notice the devil's tail; the Sin City bar chairs have them too, incorporated in metal as part of the chairs' structure (unfortunately, I don't have any photos of one).

More about the brewery here. The stout tastes decent by the way.

Wednesday, 10 February 2010

Real-life Forrest Gump

Review of the book One In A Hundred Million by Marion Urichich

Marion Urichich has a story to tell. In fact he has a lot of them. No wonder, as he suffers from ADHD — which makes it even more impressive that he has actually taken on the task (and finished it!) to write his memoirs and publish them.

And that's pretty much what this book is. A mix of stories and thoughts, without any structure or obvious order whatsoever. Sometimes entertaining, and always with wit. You can somehow sense that eternal grin on his face lurking behind every story, every sentence. Marion Urichich just loves to share.

The question is with whom. Urichich does not care, as long as somebody reads it. Somebody. In the very (very!) best case, this kind of book finds an audience with those who love to read about the U.S.American Dream (including the political points of view, which unfortunately confirm some of the prejudice that Europeans may have on untravelled U.S.Americans). Fair enough. That was the very best case.

More likely though, the book's audience is a limited private circle (often too private, as it is doubtful whether anybody really wants to hear about Mr Urichich's body functions and malfunctions). A circle that includes family members, and people who have come across him maybe. These seem to be quite a few, fortunately mainly for good and only a handful for worse — 'cause he has experienced quite a bit in his lively life.

This makes him a bit of a real-life Forrest Gump, a label that is emphasized by his writing which is by all means not very professional. The 'style' and 'structure', or rather lack of both, add to the authenticity and the charm of Urichich's book though. And, like Forrest Gump, there is one thing one cannot take away from him: He had the courage to tell his story, or rather stories, not giving a rat's ass (those would be his words) about what others may think.

review by Bjørn Clasen, on the author’s own request

Tuesday, 9 February 2010

The Freedom To Be Free — La liberté d'être libre

‘Freedom has become a duty, not just a possibility.
But by becoming a constraint, it empties itself from its sense!’

Michela Marzano, philosopher
in Psychologies #292 (January 2010) — «Pourquoi nous hésitons?» (‘Why do we hesitate?’)
by Valérie Peronnet
quotation translated by Bjørn Clasen

« La liberté est devenue un devoir, pas seulement une possibilité.
Mais en devenant une contrainte, elle se vide de son sens! »

Michela Marzano, philosopher
in Psychologies Nº 292 (janvier) — «Pourquoi nous hésitons?» par Valérie Peronnet

Friday, 5 February 2010

We've Got M@il

In Bratislava you don't just get a mailbox.
You get a mailbox
and a sculpture!

© 2008 Bjørn Clasen. Use only with explicit permission.

Thursday, 4 February 2010

Animal Magic

In Luxembourg, pharmacies tend to be named after a lion. Which is already weird.
In Bratislava, it becomes surrealistic, as there is a pharmacy named after …a lobster!

Somewhere in between is probably the best choice. They say that dolphins provide the best cure one can imagine.

© 2008 Bjørn Clasen. Use only with explicit permission.

Wednesday, 3 February 2010

A buckle is not just a buckle

Isn't it fascinating how many aspects are considered when designing a buckle to securely fasten a backpack?
And even more so the effort Duraflex goes through to actually inform the buyer about these aspects. More buckle for the buck...

Tuesday, 2 February 2010

A Man with a Ball

I wonder what this sign means…

Maybe that men with hats playing football on the street will be injured and bandaged?


© 2008 Bjørn Clasen. Use only with explicit permission.

Monday, 1 February 2010

Am Skandalspiel in 1982 war die FIFA selbst Schuld

»Okay, da war das Spiel gegen Österreich. Aber daran war die FIFA selbst schuld. Algerien hatte am Vortag gespielt und so wussten beide Mannschaften, dass ihnen das Ergebnis genügt. Wenn sie dann noch die gleiche Sprache sprechen, kommt halt so was dabei heraus.«
Klaus Fischer

(beiden Teams genügte im abschließenden Gruppenspiel ein knapper Sieg des deutschen Teams, um in die Zwischenrunde zu kommen. Nach dem 1:0 von Horst Hrubesch in der elften Minute begnügten sich Deutschland und Österreich damit, den Ball im Mittelfeld hin und her zu spielen. Die Partie ging als Nichtangriffspakt von Gijon in die Annalen ein; d.-Red. NFV).

Sunday, 31 January 2010

Warning! Art!


© 2008 Bjørn Clasen. Use only with explicit permission.

Saturday, 30 January 2010

The Multicolouredness Of A Multilingual Blog

There is a bit of everything on this blog, and it contains posts in no less than 22 different languages. To give you an overview, and a quick access to all the subjects, click on the labels below.

There are of course some overlaps, and subjects like ‘philosophy’ and ‘sociology’ are interpreted broadly as they touch so many aspects of life. On the other hand ‘coaching’ and ‘communication’ are recently-added labels, and you will find posts on these subjects in other categories as well.

Happy reading! There's a lot of fun in here! And, oh, you might learn something new ;)

Thursday, 28 January 2010

My Wish List :)

Electronic stuff
Phone headset with mute (for example Plantronics S 12)
Small and practical webcam for a Mac laptop
Navigation system with TMC, 44 European countries (and maybe North America) and MP3 player (if possible including headphone jack) — for example Mio Moov Spirit Flat S 568 or Mio Moov Spirit Flat Full Europe (ask the dealer what the difference actually is) or something from Becker + holder kit for the car
…and of course a car for the navigation system :)

Dark Star
Der Lehrer — Die Komplette Serie
Heroes — Season 1 (or the whole series, i.e. Season 1 through 3)
Before The Devil Knows You're Dead
Monty Python: Almost The Truth — The Lawyer's Cut
What About Bob?
Kvinden Der Drømte Om En Mand

The Soundtrack Of Our Lives: Communion
Ian Brown: My Way
Kent: Röd
Steffen Brandt: Baby Blue
Meiko: Meiko
Githead: Landing
A Place To Bury Strangers: Exploding Head
Florence + The Machine: Lungs
Sandra: Reflections — The Reproduced Hits (Special Edition)
Institute: Distort Yourself
The Dodos: Time To Die
Au Revoir Simone: Still Night, Still Light
The Pains Of Being Pure At Heart: The Pains Of Being Pure At Heart

Girls: Album
Secret Machines: The Road Leads Where It's Led
Secret Machines: Secret Machines
Rivers Cuomo: Alone — The Home Recordings Of Rivers Cuomo
Rivers Cuomo: Alone II — The Home Recordings Of Rivers Cuomo
Jason Lytle: Yours Truly, The Commuter
Erasure: Nightbird
Reverend & The Makers: A French Kiss In The Chaos
Coconut Records: Davy
Madness: The Liberty Of Norton Folgate
Smith Westerns: Smith Westerns

Václav Havel: Leaving
Klaus Fischer: Fallrückzieher Und Mehr…
Dirk Unschuld: Als Der Geißbock Moped Fuhr
Aryanne Oade: Starting And Running A Coaching Business
Cora Besser-Siegmund: Erfolge Zum Wundern
Co-active Coaching — New Skills for Coaching People Toward Success in Work and Life
Live & Work In: New Zealand
Moon — Living Abroad In New Zealand
Shelagh Young: How To Be A Successful Life Coach
Ruth Pink: Denken — kreativ, professionell und systematisch
Hüther: Männer – Das schwache Geschlecht und sein Gehirn
Louise Purwin Zobel: The Travel Writer's Handbook

Practical small file or something, to sort business cards

Wednesday, 27 January 2010

A Midsummer Night's Dream (not) on Wikipedia

I added the below paragraph, which apparently is not considered relevant as it is just one of thousands of adaptations. Personally, I still believe it is of interest, as it shows how Shakespeare's work lives on in our post-industrialised and globalising society.

An argument was also that it is not mentioned in academic sources. Well, I must have misunderstood what Wikipedia is all about, as I thought that — as opposed to conventional encyclopædias — it was supposed to be for everyone, and by everyone. Pity. Wanted to share this interesting piece of information.

===Modern performances===
Numerous are the inventive and alternative performances of one of Shakespeare's most popular plays. One example is the multilingual ''Dream 2007'', which the [[New World Theatre Club]] set up under the direction of [[Tony Kingston]] as part of the [[European Capital of Culture]] festivities in [[Luxembourg_(city)|Luxembourg]]. Although set in a post-industrial environment, the original dialogue was kept for the fairies, and translated into German for the upper-class Athenians, Luxembourgish (the first known translation into this language) for the lower-class, whereas the songs were in French, thus depicting the multi-cultural nature of contemporary Luxembourg and Europe, and its conflicts and misunderstandings.[ New World Theatre Club: Dream 2007]; ''352'' issue #176 of 19 April 2007 p33 and #189 of 19 July 2007 p20; ''France News'' September 2007 issue

Tuesday, 26 January 2010

Das IST verdammt lustig! — Woollily funny!

English translation:

‘No, we did not notice. We do try to count if everybody's home, but usually we fall asleep.’

‘Just like that.’

(v)on Nichtlustig

Monday, 25 January 2010

Ny rejseform inden for EU

Hvad er det for et grænse-los, man får, hvis man rejser til flere lande?

fra siden EU i kontakt med borgerne

Sunday, 24 January 2010

‘There is nothing like real homegrown spaghetti’

Click on the picture below to watch a hilarious, short clip on spaghetti harvest:

And I used to make people believe that pasta actually grows like wheat on fields, macaroni being the shell and spaghetti the inside. One learns every day…

Background of the clip

Saturday, 23 January 2010

Kongelig privilegeret (eller privilegeret kongelig)

Også på det sproglige område har det danske kongehus i århundreder nyt særlige privilegier. Det viser nedenstående spørgsmål til og svar fra Udenrigsministeriet angående skrivemåden på ambassadeskilte (og øl).

Mit spørgsmål

For nylig var jeg i byen Gdańsk i det nordlige Polen, og lagde tilfældigvis mærke til, at Danmark har et konsulat i byens hovedgade. Hvad jeg også lagde mærke til, var stavemåden på det officielle skilt (det ovale, røde med rigsvåbnet, som man også ser det på ambassader) — her stod nemlig »KONGELIG DANSK KONSULAT«.

Er dette ikke en fejl? Da »konsulat« er et intetkønsord, ville jeg mene, der skulle stå »KONGELIGT DANSK KONSULAT« på sådanne officielle skilte. Jeg har diskuteret det med flere sprogkyndige bekendte, og samlet er der tvivl; måske der er en særlig regel for ordet »kongelig«, at det i dette tilfælde fx ikke er et egentligt tillægsord, men en slags sammensætning med ordet »dansk«?

Svar fra Udenrigsministeriet

I forbindelse med Udenrigsministeriets overvejelser af dit spørgsmål […], har vi konstateret, at der ikke er tale om en fejl, men om en ældre form, som også findes i fx ”Kongelig dansk Gesandtskab”. Som forklaring på fænomenet har bl.a. været peget på den udtalemæssige lighed mellem –t og d- i hhv. kongeligt og dansk, som udtales på samme sted i munden, hvorved der opstår en tilbøjelighed til at ”trække de to lyd sammen”, sådan at den ene, altså –t i ”kongeligt”, forsvinder. Vi har dog ikke villet svare uden at forhøre os hos Dansk Sprognævn, som [forklarer fænomenet] som en ældre form, hvor ”kongelig” optræder ubestemt, muligvis understøttet af en tryksvag udtale, jf. […] ”LEVERANDØR TIL DET KONGELIG DANSKE HOF”.

Friday, 22 January 2010

Ton intégrité est à toi — Your integrity is your own

»Je devrais me priver de faire ce dont j'ai envie, juste parce que ce n'est pas ce que l'on attend de moi? Me l'interdire serait aller à l'encontre de mes convictions.«
Sophie Cadalen — auteure, actrice et psychanalyste
dans Psychologies Nº292 — Janvier 2010
‘I should deny myself what I feel like doing, just because it is not what is expected of me? To forbid myself from it would be to go against my conviction.’
Sophie Cadalen — author, actress and psychoanalyst
in Psychologies #292 — January 2010

Thursday, 21 January 2010

James Cameron's Avatar is a stylish film marred by its racist subtext

This brilliant, thoughtful and only slightly satirical journalist does hit the nail on the head, writing exactly what I thought when I watched the for some reason so highly praised 'Avatar':

Avatar was a spectacle, I’ll grant you that. The film’s 230-million-dollar budget guaranteed extravagant and often beautiful 3D special effects. But as I left the cinema last night, I couldn’t help questioning the weird mind behind it all. Was it James Cameron’s intention to be so nauseatingly patronising? And how could the famously Left-wing director have failed to pick up on his film’s racist subtext?

I won’t spoil the plot, but here’s the basic set-up: a group of mercenary humans have colonised a faraway planet, called Pandora, in order to extract an enormously valuable mineral found there. Pandora’s “natives” – a race of tall, blue-skinned aliens called the Na’vi – live on an area of land which is set to be mined. They won’t relocate, so the humans attack.

But the Na’vi aren’t your average extra-terrestrials. Blue skin aside, they’re essentially a childish pastiche of the “ethnic”, with recognisably human features. They wear Maasai-style necklaces and beaded jewellery which Cameron has borrowed from tribal East Africa. Their long, dark hair is dreadlocked. Their clothes are apparently Amerindian. They are armed with bows and poisoned arrows, and wear facepaint into battle. The main Na’vi characters are voiced by four black actors: Zoë Saldaña, C. C. H. Pounder, Laz Alonso and Peter Mensah; as well as one Cherokee, Wes Studi. The evil humans, needless to say, are white, male and middle-aged.

James Cameron has been very open about the politics behind Avatar. It’s about how “greed and imperialism tend to destroy the environment,” he said in a recent interview. “It’s a way of looking back on ourselves from this other world.”

If we look at his version of our planet, however, the view is overwhelmingly repellent. Pandora is to Cameron what Africa was to Joseph Conrad – it’s another, fictional ‘Heart of Darkness’, a place where a cruel imperial power subjects what is (perhaps unwittingly) depicted as a lesser race. Chinua Achebe, Conrad’s fiercest critic, wrote that “Heart of Darkness projects the image of Africa as ‘the other world,’ the antithesis of Europe and therefore of civilization, a place where man’s vaunted intelligence and refinement are finally mocked by triumphant bestiality.” Almost the exact same could be said of Avatar.

Take, for example, the relationship between the ethnic Na’vi and the animals which inhabit Pandora. Every interaction between them involves an act of quasi-consummation. The “natives” attach a spindly appendage to whatever raging animal they are trying to tame, resulting in a short struggle followed by an almost post-coital quiet. In another scene, one of the Na’vi is warned not to play with the same appendage or, he is told, “you’ll go blind.” The hint is heavy enough – it’s the same “triumphant bestiality” which Achebe criticised in Heart of Darkness.

By far the most contemptible theme in Avatar involves the hero, a young disabled American called Jake Sully, played by Sam Worthington. Before the humans declare war on the Na’vi, Sully is sent to them (in the form of a blue-skinned avatar) in a last ditch attempt to find a diplomatic solution. But, lo and behold, he becomes one of them – sympathising so much with their plight that he decides to lead them into battle against the humans.

As Left-wing conceits go, this one surely tops all the others: the ethnic Na’vi, the film suggests, need the white man to save them because, as a less developed race, they lack the intelligence and fortitude to overcome their adversaries by themselves. The poor helpless natives, in other words, must rely on the principled white man to lead them out of danger.

Yuck. And there I was, thinking this sort of patronising world-view was dying out. But plainly it lives on in Hollywood. Avatar is artistic evidence of the ugly mindset which underlies so much of Left-wing thinking today: the belief that only the superior Western liberal is fit to lead the world into a better future. Other than a whole lot of style, this is all Cameron’s film has to offer – so I make that 230 million dollars wasted.

Will Heaven
in The Telegraph

Wednesday, 20 January 2010

Für Lakritzen-Lieber… — For Liquorice Lovers…

…gibt's ein kleines Geschäft in Köln, das dieses „schwarze Gold” aus aller Welt importiert:

(das Logo könnte ich übrigens gut für meine Coach-Praxis gebrauchen…)

änd nöw in English:
…there's a little shop in Cologne that imports this ‘black gold’ from all around the World.
(actually, I could use that logo for my coaching business…)

Tuesday, 19 January 2010

Tid ER vist penge — Time DOES seem to be money

fundet på

(The text reads:
Save 1h 5m!
3992 Danish kroner [some 535 €] in supplements’)

Monday, 18 January 2010

Just a precaution

An entrance ticket for the Eiffel Tower. The one in Las Vegas, that is. Notice what's marked in red.

Sunday, 17 January 2010

‘Learn Languages the Right Way

Language acquisition games and abstract communicative method are bullshit. The second-best way to learn a foreign language is alone in a room doing skull-numbing rote memorization of vocabulary, grammar, key phrases, and colloquialisms. The best way is in bed.’

Chuck Thompson
in ‘Smile When You’re Lying — Confessions Of A Rogue Travel Writer’ (p 219)

Review of the book

Saturday, 16 January 2010

Red pesto pasta sauce test

3 stars — Pesto Pomodoro (bio-verde)
The taste of olive (oil) shines through, giving this pesto a distinct, almost bitter taste, which is not very subtle. The consistency seems a little dry. bio-verde's Pesto Puttanesca will do in an emergency but is only recommended because it is bio.
Price: 3,99 € for 200 ml

4 stars — Pesto Puttanesca (bio-verde)
When you first put this sauce into your mouth, what meets you is a surprisingly delicious and fresh taste of olive. Soon, this gets monotonous though. The consistency is suitably greasy without going over the top. A decent pesto, especially for small portions.
Price: 3,99 € for 200 ml

Friday, 15 January 2010

Once again: It is as simple as this

‘The starting point for any communication campaign must be its message. Based on policy priorities, the message must be simple, honest and have an authentic human side. Target groups must be identified; attempting to communicate to everyone at the same time can backfire.’
Alexandra Culliford
‘The new media ecosystem — American lessons in communication’
in Commission en Direct #537

Thursday, 14 January 2010

De kedelige 80ere

»Hvis ikke vi var blevet reddet på stregen, var 80'erne blevet århundredets kedeligste årti. Men der skete mere i 80'ernes tre sidste måneder end i hele resten af årtiet.«
Steffen Brandt, 1990
ifølge Gaffas 25-års jubilæumsnummer (#9/2008)

Solicitud del empleo de Cantante de rock
en fiestas de pueblo

Desde los años 50 estoy melenudo, y entonces soy el pionero de esto peinado absolutamente necesario para ser un cantante creíble de rock.

En 1960 fundaba un grupo que se llamó «los Beatles». Fue un éxito mediocre, pero escribió unos canciones que Ustedes quizás conocen, como «Ayer», «¡Hola Jude!», «El Submarino Amarillo» o «El Grupo De Los Corazones Solos Del General Franco».

Pero después de unos años entre groupies y droga me sentía un poco aburrido, y decidí aprender a cantar. Mis trés primeros profesores ahora están en clinicas psiciatricas, y como yo pago sus tratamientos puedo decir que estoy contribuyendo mucho a la beneficiencia.

Sé que las fiestas de pueblo que Ustedes organizan sirven para recaudar dinero para la beneficiencia, y estoy seguro que mis experiencias en el rock y en la beneficiencia son exactamente lo que Ustedes están buscando.

© 2010 Bjørn Clasen
Ejercicio del curso de español — «Imagina que quieres conseguir [el trabajo de] cantante de rock en fiestas de pueblo. [...] Prepara una presentación [...] (exagera todo lo que quieras).»

Tuesday, 12 January 2010

Perfect Moments in real life and in fake non-fiction

‘The trouble with Perfect Moments is that they never come at the end of the trip. They come somewhere in the middle. Or the beginning. As a travel writer, you get to cheat. Rearrange chronology. Take your Day Two dinner with the college kids and turn it into the last paragraph, your final hurrah. It’s fake, of course, but so is a lot of travel writing, so what’s the difference?

Actual travelers don’t have this luxury. Actual travelers exist in real time and have to deal with the kinds of troubles that don’t end up as body copy between splashy photos of a beach at dawn and coconut-encrusted prawns in honey-melon-okra dipping sauce at cocktail hour. Actual travelers have to deal with actual travel. Often, this leads to the kind of trouble the travel industry would just as soon pretend doesn’t exist.’

Chuck Thompson
in ‘Smile When You’re Lying — Confessions Of A Rogue Travel Writer’ (p 23)

Review of the book

Monday, 11 January 2010

Women's Volleyball and Team Spirit

Over the weekend, Luxembourg hosted Novotel Cup featuring four women's and four men's teams. As Denmark played in the women's tournament, I went to watch the match (my country of residence vs my country of birth), to get some impressions, to shoot some photos ...and to learn something.

As you see, it is a bit of a challenge to take photos of such a fast-moving sport. That's why the ball is not actually on any of the pix...

Denmark won by 3 sets to 1 (27:25, 22:25, 25:22, 25:16) in an even match over two hours. The star players — to someone who does not know a great deal about volleyball — seem to be the continuously concentrated captain and motivator Mia Kloth-Jørgensen (who with her 1.69 m looks very small next to the generally very tall players), the straightforward smasher Lykke Degner (1.91 m of sporty beauty!), as well as athletic Hansen and elegant Kyhn. Those were the names on their jerseys; I am, however, not sure of their correctness as there are discrepancies between the official tournament programme and the Danish Volleyball Association's website.

The real star though is the team itself. Volleyball is a team game in its purest sense, and if you are used to for example soccer, it may seem confusing that the team members get together between every single ball, won or lost, to bond, congratulate, motivate, keep up team spirit no matter what. Given that most ball exchanges last around 5 seconds till one team scores a point, and rarely over 20 seconds, the bonding ritual is very frequent.

A lot of teams, not only in sports, can learn from this!

Sunday, 10 January 2010

Create an exhibition for Galería Studio Cerrillo!

Call for PROPOSALS PIC 2010

In 2010 Studio Cerrillo plans to offer a year of performance, conceptual and installation art.

We are seeking an original concept created for our gallery which is 4.6 x 4.6 x 3.2 meters, 15 linear meters of exhibition space, a small back patio, and the street which is easily closed for the day and night of the inauguration, thus allowing the connected spaces to serve as an excellent venue for the artist.

Projects submitted for this year of alternative art need to be performance, installation or conceptual to be considered. We are specifically seeking original works that are designed for specifically for our space. We want ideas that pushes the edge of each individual artist and the audience. Whether MODERN, SEXUAL, SATIRICAL, REACTIONARY, POLITICAL or PROHIBITED, we want each artist to explore the outer edge, to create a new work and to have fun.

More info here


Llamada para PROPUESTAS para PIC 2010

En 2010 Studio Cerrillo tiene planeado ofrecer un año dedicado al performance, la instalación y el arte conceptual.

Buscamos conceptos originales creados para nuestra galería la cual tiene las siguientes dimensiones: 4.6 x 4.6 x 3.2 metros, 15 metros lineales de espacio para exhibición, un pequeño patio trasero, y la calle que puede fácilmente ser clausurada para el día y la noche de la inauguración; estos espacios interconectados otorgan al artista excelentes posibilidades.

Los proyectos que se recibirán para este año dedicado al arte alternativo deben entrar en la categoría de performance, instalación o arte conceptual. Buscamos específicamente trabajos originales diseñados exclusivamente para nuestro espacio. Queremos ideas que lleven al límite al artista y su público. Ya sea arte MODERNO, SEXUAL, SATIRICO, REACCIONARIO, POLITICO o PROHIBIDO, buscamos que cada artista explore los extremos externos, que sea capaz de crear un trabajo nuevo y que se divierta.

Más información aquí

Saturday, 9 January 2010

How helpful

Screenshots and quotes from a normal day at the (Microsoft) Office...

‘Windows Media Player encountered an unknown error.’
and then, when clicking for Help...

Windows Media Player Error Message Help

You've encountered an error message while using Windows Media Player. Additional information is not currently available for this error.

Additional Assistance

For information about obtaining technical support from Microsoft, see the Troubleshooting Windows Media Player page.

For general information about using Windows Media Player and other Windows Media technologies, see the Windows Media Player FAQ page or the Windows Media Knowledge Center.’

Friday, 8 January 2010

An American view on Europe

‘Europe will probably have to burn itself to the ground once again before it completely gets over World War II.’

Chuck Thompson
in ‘Smile When You’re Lying — Confessions Of A Rogue Travel Writer’ (p 272)

Review of the book

Thursday, 7 January 2010

Was eine Mannschaft ist — What a team is

„Mannschaft bedeutet für mich einen Verbund von Personen, die in bestimmten Aktivitäten als Einheit auftreten und geschlossen gemeinsame Ziele verfolgen. Jeder muss seine individuellen Stärken der Mannschaft zur Verfügung stellen.”

„Eine Mannschaft sind Personen, die gemeinsam ein Ziel vor Augen haben und es gemeinsam erreichen und teilen wollen.”

im GeißbockEcho — das Clubmagazin des 1. FC Köln, Nr. 9 vom 20. Dezember 2009

‘To me, a Team means a co-operation of individuals who engage in certain activities as a unity, determined to follow common goals. Everyone must put his individual strengths at the team's disposal.’

‘A team is a group of persons who focus on a common goal and who want to reach it together and share it.’

Quotations from players
in GeißbockEcho1. FC Cologne's club magazine, #9 of 20 December 2009

Eine Frage der Werte — Questioning values

"Ich wollte Spaß und Freude vermitteln. [... I]ch war oben angekommen, und vor der Tür stand ein Mercedes. Aber das alles hat mich nicht glücklich gemacht. Ich habe mich gefragt, war’s das jetzt?"
Sebastian Deisler
zur Frage "Welche Dinge haben Sie gesucht?" — Interview in Der Tagesspiegel
'I wanted to promote fun and joy. [...] I had arrived on the top, and in front of my door I had a Mercedes. But all of this did not make me happy. I asked myself if this was it?'
Sebastian Deisler
on the question 'What did you look for?' — Interview in Der Tagesspiegel

Wednesday, 6 January 2010

Hey Mister Tangerine Man

Photo © 2009 Julie Clasen — Artwork © 2009 Bjørn Clasen

Saturday, 2 January 2010

Jennifer Aniston in her football outfit
— Jennifer Aniston i sit footballtøj

When the Danish newspaper Ekstra Bladet wrote about the movie ‘The Break-Up’, starring Jennifer Aniston and her then-boyfriend Vince Vaughn, they used this photo. The caption reads ‘Vince Vaughn opens his eyes wide as Jennifer Aniston shows her new 'look'. (Picture from the movie)’.

The choice of photo is somewhat a disappointment (except maybe for certain fetichists), as the article was titled ‘Aniston clean-shaven and naked in new movie’. Now, even if she is clean-shaven underneath that football gear …which one is Jennifer??

Da Ekstra Bladet i sin tid skrev om filmen ‘The Break-Up’ med Jennifer Aniston og hendes daværende kæreste Vince Vaughn, blev ovenstående billede brugt. Lidt af en skuffelse (undtagen måske for visse fetichister), idet rubrikken på artiklen var ‘Aniston glatbarberet og nøgen i ny film’. Hm. Selvom hun skulle være glatbarberet under det der footballudstyr …hvem af dem er så egentlig Jennifer??

Friday, 1 January 2010

When decision-makers keep forgetting the people

‘If on the way we have lost the hearts and minds of many Romanians, it is because the bureaucrats from both Bucharest and Brussels forgot how important public awareness and public education are. This mistake should not be repeated.’
Adrian Severin, Member of the European Parliament
on the question ‘Looking back now, how has joining the European Union changed Romania?’
from ‘Remembering the Romanian Revolution’ — interview in ‘Commission en direct’ #539, 11-17 December 2009

This goes for most political projects, and can thus be generalised into:
‘If on the way we have lost the hearts and minds of many individuals, it is because the bureaucrats and politicians forgot how important public awareness and public education are. This mistake should not be repeated.’