Tags: sinterklaas


(no subject)

Tomorrow is Sinterklaas (St Nicholas' Eve). If you'd like to learn a bit more about this feast, or if you just want a good laugh, have a listen to David Sedaris' hilarious, if not altogether accurate*, take on the matter:

6 to 8 black men, part 1 (sendspace / rapidshare)

6 to 8 black men, part 2 (sendspace / rapidshare)

6 to 8 black men, part 3 (sendspace / rapidshare)

*for instance, Sinterklaas (the person) IS NOT Santa Claus, and Sinterklaas (the feast) IS NOT Dutch Christmas (we celebrate Christmas on the 25th). Confusion has mainly arisen because the Americans have taken the name Sinterklaas, corrupted it to Santa Claus, and given it to Father Christmas. :P

P.S. I hope to post a regular entry soon, and also to start commenting again. I miss you guys. (Melissa, I owe you a long-overdue e-mail. I'm sorry!)


(no subject)

The past week I've been busy with Sinterklaas preparations: buying presents, wrapping them, and making rhymes, last night we celebrated Sinterklaas, and today I've been busy with the aftermath of Sinterklaas: tidying up, and putting away the presents received.

The rhymes were below par this year but the rest was A-OK. :)

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lewis furey

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This morning I was up at 7, because the heating engineer would come round to check the system and for all I knew he might be at the door at 8. He arrived at 9:45 and was gone at 10:30 or so, leaving the rest of the day to me. It is really nice to have such a long day, I must admit.

I spent a successful afternoon shopping, both for Sinterklaas and myself. I bought the Angels in America DVD for myself (yay!), and also DVDs of The Big Lebowski (hey Jackie! :D ) and Barton Fink. A Dutch newspaper offers 2 Coen brothers films every week for a special price. Next week it will be The Hudsucker Proxy and O Brother Where Art Thou, which I also want. These 4 are my favourites, together with Fargo, but that one is in a set with a film I don't care for. I can always buy Fargo separately, but of course I do not have to own every film I like a lot.

Among other things I bought 2 books as presents and of course could not resist the temptation to buy a book for me, too. Windows on the World by Frédéric Beigbeder, definitely not a fun read, but gripping and compelling, to judge from the bits I read here and there. I would like to push all my current reading aside and start this book immediately, but it will have to wait until the holidays are over. Bleak January will be a perfect month for it.

A really good day, all in all. I'm afraid tomorrow will be less great. In the afternoon I'm having a talk with someone from Social Security to discuss my reintegration (i.e. into the working classes). I am so not looking forward to that. I have heard several first-hand accounts of the pointlessness of this so-called 'reintegration process'. Well, I refuse to think about it now and ruin my day.

lewis furey

If I could do it all over again, I'd do it all over you

After having been on good behaviour for several evenings I relapsed last night, going to bed only at 3:30. I was severely punished for it this morning, when I was woken up at 8:15 by my friends the "gardeners" (read: cretins) who had not brought their lawnmowers this time, but, much worse, their leaf blowers. (Or whatever the English name is for that piece of equipment that is about half as efficient as sweeping or raking, costs a lot of energy, and produces a hellish noise that drives everybody insane. In other words, the ultimate boys' toy.)

Last month the cretins managed to keep themselves busy for 3 consecutive days with blowing the leaves back and forth through our street. Once, when the racket became particularly loud, I looked out of my window, and right underneath, one of them was blowing the leaves from my garden path. Wtf??? Those leaves look a whole lot better lying on the garden path than hanging in the shrubs, you moron! The next day, again, a hellish racket: this time someone was busy blowing the leaves away from the garden next door. Where to? Yep, you guessed it: into my garden. So half an hour later, there they were again, repeating the whole process. When they finally left after those three days, my garden looked a disaster. The path was relatively leaf-free, but the lavender plants, the fuchsias and the shrubs that had looked green before, now all had a lot of dead leaves stuck between their branches.

And so this morning they were back again. I lay in bed, headache fast approaching, thinking up the most refined and some not so refined tortures for the "gardeners" and the inventor of this utterly useless piece of crap. A simple but effective one would be to submit them to this noise for 24 hours, all while they were trying to a) have a conversation, b) listen to music, c) watch TV, and d) sleep.

At one point I could tell from the racket that they were busy in my garden, but, surprisingly, after a little over an hour the noise stopped and didn't start up again. When I checked, I saw the leaves lying in great heaps along the street, but the cretins were nowhere to be seen. Unfortunately I couldn't sleep anymore, so I got up after trying for half an hour. The person doing my garden today was apparently a lot more thorough, there is hardly a dead leaf left. Two of the hydrangea's branches were snapped in the process, and some of the smaller plants have been blown down, but on the whole it does look better, I must say.

It is now evening and they have not come back to collect the leaves. Apparently they are hoping that the wind will disperse the leaves, so that they'll have an excuse to come and play with their toys all over again tomorrow. So it will have to be an early night for me, I'm afraid. All the more tragic since I learned that from 12 until 8 tomorrow morning there is a Nick Drake night on the radio (because of his death exactly 30 years ago). Boohoo!

This afternoon I went out to do some Sinterklaas shopping and to look for the Blackadder and Angels in America DVDs. V&D had the complete Blackadder set, but between Ally McBeal and Baantjer there was a large gap. Uh-oh. When I asked someone at the desk, it turned out that Angels in America was in the top-20 rack that I had completely overlooked. Hurrah! I couldn't believe my luck. I took them both, paid for them, and then it turned out that the disks of Angels were nowhere to be found. AAARGH! And the person who would no doubt know where they were, had just gone on a break. So after having done some more Sinterklaas shopping I returned 20 minutes later, but unfortunately the knowledgeable person had not been able to find them either, and in the end I had to get a refund. Ohhh. So near and yet so far! But I have held the box in my hand, it does exist, and it will be mine!

BTW, _m_h_n, you can tell Sinterklaas that it costs € 29. :)