mago

Strange Daze

Sometimes time seems to crawl. This afternoon I felt very tired, lay down and nodded off. When I regained consciousness I thought that I’d have slept for an hour or so, but it was less than 15 minutes. I do not complain about this, it is only unusual, and a bit confusing. I had a terrible night, sleep did not want to come or to stay, and this morning I felt exhausted, not refreshed.
I had to see the doctor today, I will see him tomorrow, and then I have to wait for another four days, until, yeah … At least I have no urge to smoke or drink, I stuff frozen vegetables into the microwave, and all is well.
The only problem I have to solve is what to read in the days after the procedure. I have to stay in the hospital for three days afterwards, and I doubt that they will give me sleeping pills for all the time. As I understood this is for observation only, without any follow up “actions”. I do not want to buy things like the use of a tv or internet connection – I was handed a list of (rather expensive) options, all things I do not need & do not want. I just want to have my peace, preferably in silence. But it’s a hospital, not a Carthusian monastery, sadly. I will find a solution. It is not too long, after all I expect to come back home on Frayday next week.
In other news – some readers my remember that we once discussed here the topic of “slavery” in Europe. This became a subject of research (homepage), and a conference will be held at the end of this month (Amanda, where art thou ?) – if you have some time to spend, why not go to Bremen ?
And while you are in the region, visit Hamburg and try to find some traces of early rock’n roll in St.Pauli, its history is described in A Social History of Early Rock‘n’Roll in Germany. Hamburg from Burlesque to The Beatles 1956–69 by Julia SNEERINGER (about) (London 2018, German recension). Prof SNEERINGERs book is not a travel guide, but a learned and well received social history of this subculture. Hamburg was not very careful with this kind of heritage, they created a “Beatles Platz” (Ger., Eng.) in 2008 with figures of the musicians – I’d like to see the “hybrid of drummers Pete Best and Ringo Starr” (Bingo Barr ? Peto Stest ?) – but I think that was it.
As the reviewer of SNEERINGERs book mentioned (and I read about this somewhere else lately) the very large archive of the Hamburgian photographer Günter ZINT (Ger.), who documented “the scene” and St.Pauli since the early sixties, has found no public support in any way. I first saw photographs by ZINT in the early eighties, he documented the resistance against the Atomstaat in Brokdorf – now let me put my left fist down, sorry.
But this is “all history” of a state & a society that does not exist anymore. Today the former (green) “subversives” form coalitions with conservatives in stately parliaments, they usually are the second-strongest political party (behind the conservatives), followed by the new Fascists, while the Sozialdemokraten face political irrelevance & extinction – not only in Germany, but in nearly all European states. The Beatles are musealised, the Stones taxidermied themselves, and Dylan vanished in his own galaxy ages ago – Ms FAITHFULL made a new album, maybe its worth a try ; Joni MITCHELL turned 75, time’s a cruel master, darling. Let’s end this seminostalgic prattlebrabble.
Let’s listen to Pharao Tutankhamun’s trumpets (Eng.), as they were played in 1939, five months before the beginning of WWII. Excuse me, now I’ll crawl back into my bubble.

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mago

Something Technical

Venerated readers, most of You fellow bloggers use gargl’s Blogger.
It may have escaped Your attention that some weeks ago Blogger changed something in respect of the comments on Your blogs*. When I remember it correctly, from the time when I started with a Blogger blog, one could choose from a little menue if one allows comments from other blogging networks, like, for example, wordpress.
This made it easier for non-Blogger bloggers to comment : When I was logged into wordpress my avatar and identification would be automatically displayed on your blog’s comment formular – if you allowed it. If not, there was always the possibility to comment with the options “name / website”, or “anonymous” – if You had specified it.
Now it seems that the standard option activated is : “Allow only comments from other Blogger blogs”. After having commented I am asked to set up an account with gargle, what I – please accept my apologies – will not do.
But You still have the option to allow comments with identification in the fields “name / website”, and “anonymous”. You just need to activate, to allow this.
I already asked some of You, my venerated readers, to allow this, so that me – and of course other readers of your blogs – can still comment on Your blogs. And I am glad to say that You did allow me in.
But some of You do not display Your email address publicly, so I can not reach You, and ask for permission.
To make a long story short : I just want to gently ask, whether those of my venerated readers, who run a Blogger blog, and may have noticed that I did not comment on Your blog for some time – whether You could have a look on Your options for commenting, and maybe allow commenting with the option “name / website” ?
I do not know whether the downside is a lot of spam, but the upside of allowing a little leak to the outside of the gargle universe, may be more comments.

This is the official help by gargle that says under number 5, bullet two :

“In “Who Can Comment,” select User with Google Accounts to restrict anonymous commenting.”

Come on, live dangerously : Allow the dirty rest in !

* I am sorry, I do not know whether You already spoke about this Eroswings. If so, excuse me please. The reason for this Public Service Announcement is that I can not reach several Blogger bloggers via mail, and hence the contact is totally broken, or at least, one way only.

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Persons, Places

Should I …

… say something about the latest action of the fuehrer*, the firing of the foreign secretary, that is ?
I don’t think so. After all the question was not “if”, but only “when ?”
The form ? As shabby as possible, true to the fuehrer’s core. And do not disregard how proud the fuehrer is, he has to mention that it is his own decision.
The only thing I find interesting is the timetable. According to the fuehrer’s headquarter the now ex-secretary was informed / got a strong hint – or something – on last Friday.
A under-secretary of the administration for foreign affairs refuted this and said that the now ex-secretary learned about his kick-out today, like everybody else. Promptly the under-secretary was fired too.
So what was the last statement of the now ex-secretary ? He condemned the attempted murder of a Russian ex-spy on British soil and encouraged the British PM in her stance against Russia. Someone must have a list of the Russian ex-spies who had accidents of whatever nature over the last few years in Britain. GOd, it is simply what the Tcheka does to traitors, isn’t it ?
The fuehrer will say nothing about it, and will surely not join any program of sanctions or whatever. And if you want to stay on the fuehrer’s payment list (the state’s that is), you do not utter even the smallest critique against Russia. Or else.
(You can read about this “timeline” in the WPost, NYTimes, CNN, The Atlantic, Slate, Salon, with dates and all ; I do not have to repeat all this here.)
Do not forget that the seemingly most important thing for the fuehrer (besides his prick and dollars) is “loyalty”. I think it could also be called servile submissiveness – I’m not sure how to translate the German phrase hündische Unterwürfigkeit correctly : Whatever Vlad did for the fuehrer ten or fifteen years ago, it must have been – like great !
I can’t help : I think someone somewhere in a department for subversion read an old Asterix, volume 15, titled La Zizanie, Streit um Asterix or The Roman Agent, and then went to work.
If so, the result is impressive.

 * I will not call him “The American Leader” anymore. For me he is the fuehrer, with small “f”.

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mago, Places

Safety First

Pointless, boring story ahead.

The first man came in the late morning and marked the positions. The second one carried a box with devices and a laptop. He sat on the floor and busily scanned codes in, marked the devices, sorted them and left, remarking that they’d be “scharf” now, loaded. The third hauled a large power drill and fixed the devices, all three in less than seven minutes. He left with a grin and gave me a xerocopied instructional paper.
You may already guessed it, venerated reader, I am talking about smoke detectors that were installed in my rooms. All for safety.
What I do not understand is that these things must be so terribly ugly.

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They successfully searched for the ugliest smoke detector available in Europe.

They successfully searched for the ugliest smoke detector available in Europe.

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They look like anti-personal-mines.
I chatted with my neighbour who is living in a pretty large appartement. They had six of these things bolted to the ceiling. Also another neighbour some floors up found six of these design disasters decorating her flat. So I wondered when in a friend’s flat of the same design only five abominations were installed. I met laptop man in the lift when he carried a new box of devices and said something along the line that they surely fitted some hundreds in this large appartement house. He was a little upset and complained that he had been told to bring more than 300 of the things, but he only had 200 mounted, at the utmost. If it would have been better organised they’d be at home already.

Yesterday I walked past the janitor’s office, found the door open and him sitting at his desk. I looked, he waved me in, kicked a chair in front of the desk and asked “What’s up ?”
I expressed my astonishment about the not mounted safety device and the lack of coordination. He rolled his eyes and explained that laptop man & friends were clearly instructed to nail a smoke detector at the ceiling of every room that is possibly a sleeping room, and in the exits or hallways (“Fluchtwege”). Of course not in bathrooms and kitchens, obviously. Laptop man decided to install the things only in rooms that right now are used as sleeping rooms. The large room in my friend’s flat is actually used as a bureau – no bed, no smoke detector.
And while they were at it, they ignored the basement level completely (six appartements) and were busily searching for the “Dachgeschoss”, the attic, that is miraculously not built.
There will be another date to fix the mess. It is not clear whether laptop man & friends will do this.
While I sat there I asked him what would happen if I heard such an alarm ? “I mean : Thursday morning, 09:30, I’m back from my morning drive, ready to sleep an hour. All my neighbours are at work or at the university, usually I am alone on the floor. I hear an alarm two doors down. I knock at the door, no reaction. My janitor is not reachable, he has to take care for other objects too, some miles away. Even if you’d be here, you are not allowed to open the door.” “That would be burglary”, he chipped in.
“I call the firefighters. They go in, false alert. Do I pay the operation ?” “Nice question”, he said, “especially because it was not asked before.” “So what does my landlord say ?”
He thought for a minute and told me that if he would ask this in the centre office they’d kick him and tell him to mind his own business. Very nice shop morale.
As he knows his company, they would pass the question to the firefighters.
He pulled out a file card and called the village firefighters, 70something.
No one reachable, even after several tries.
He called the village administration and asked for the number of the force – 70something. And, after complaining that it is useless, he got the number of a portable.
Which is not working. We tried two times : Number not taken, not connected to a customer.
“Better not burn here” he said. “Commander’s out for lunch”, I agreed.
So he called the emergency number.
“Yes, relax, no alarm” – and he told his story and asked the question. Their answer was clear : They are the professional force. If someone calls them they need to know where the emergency is, then they alarm the local force. The local force deals with it and decides whether they need professional help. The cost is not their business, that is between the local force and the local administration. For this village, they call 70something.
“Thank you.”
Two middle-aged blokes with too much time to spare and a telephone.
All in the name of safety, of course.

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