A new aproach to acheiving popolarity!

•January 20, 2010 • Leave a Comment

Maybe I just need to change my Strategy to become a famous blogger?

(Via Glaserei)

The world wide web could eat my soul

•January 17, 2010 • 4 Comments

That’s it. I give up. I capitulate. The newest tactic of my plan to get bloggingly rich just failed epicly. The entire last fall, I was sitting in my room in my underwear, waiting for my big cheque from the internet responsibles, waiting and waiting, but it just never arrived. So I decided to show them how indispensable I am and just stop blogging. Let them see how dull their silly net would be without my rambling rants, astute analyses and witty wisdom. Well, damn it, it didn’t work, they didn’t react on it. No one came crawling and sent me money. I’m still not sure who’s supposed to pay me, but it’s probably Google, as they own most of the net anyway. Don’t be evil and pay me! Maybe they were just too busy fighting off chinese hacker attacks to deal with it?

Anyway, I’m running out of money and you can live only so long on old leather shoes and apartment plants, so I’m back to keep my end of the deal. Due to my hiatus some planned posts have never been written, like a retrospect of 2009. But I think we can safely say it’s been a year we could have done without, right? Oh, there’s one thing that was hilarious: The peace nobel price for that Obama dude. How brave was it for the nobel committee to award the most famous price on earth ironically! It’s their comment on all the advance praise for Barack Obama and how everyone acts like he’s some kind of pacifist messias even though he sends shitloads of bombs and armed soldiers to Afghanistan to wreck the shit out of the Taliban (and inevitably a fair share of civilists). Very subtle. Now that’s humour I can appreciate.

So if I haven’t been writing, what have I been doing the last months? The answer’s easy: nothing. I’ve been born lazy, but recently I’ve reached new heights of laziness. And I blame (at least partly) the internet. Procrastination has never been so easy, and it’s getting out of control. I don’t want to know how many hours I’ve spent watching videos of cute animals, reading random tweets and stalking “friends” on Facebook. And now I’m terribly out of shape – mentally. The internet is for your brain what salt is for your body. It’s a good thing and even important in reasonable amounts, but it dries you out and leaves a bad taste on your mouth if you get too much of it. When I was younger I was shocked by the reality portrayed in Fahrenheit 451: People burnt all books and spent their evenings consuming shallow and mindless entertainment. But damn, that’s where we’re headed. Twitter and Co. are great, but let’s face it, these things are a direct attack on our already endangered attention span. I have read eight books in the last whole year. A good friend of mine and me have a rule that you can only call ‘reading’ a hobby if you read at least 15 books a year. Holy crap, I lost my privilege to call myself a reader.

But I’m planning on getting it back. I love the net (and salty foods) but I’m going on a diet. I need to be creative in various parts of my life (work and spare time) and so it’s vital to feed my brain gourmet stuff. I’m going to start reading real books again, lots, and I’m looking forward to it. Jack Kerouac. Nick Hornby. Max Goldt. Goethe. Sebastian Horsley. Lonely Planet South America. Haruki Murakami. The pile is high, it’s gonna be great.

Being grown up isn’t half as fun as growing up

•November 5, 2009 • 1 Comment

I recently accidently demistified a part of my youth, and – while I learnt something about life – it wasn’t too pleasant. How did that happen? I went to see a show of a punkish band (Rise Against), someting I used to do quite often back in the days. And it wasn’t the same any more. *dramatic music*

First off, I wasn’t in “the Zone” at all. When I was a youngster, that’s basically all my friend Michael and I ever did. We went to a show, then a few days later to the next, and so on an on. Every one of these experiences was an episode of this great continuous story. Our story. But today? It has become just some form of entertainment, in between other random stuff you do. Get up, coffee, work, groceries, newspaper, eat, rock show, do laundry, read, go to bed. We were just so much more commited then.

And I noticed: the average age at these events has continually dropped over the last few years. The kids get younger and younger every time, seriously. Or wait, is it because I’m getting older? Help! Okay, let’s just say was a discrepancy in age between me and the average visitor at that show. And thus I felt I didn’t quite fit in there as well as I used to. And that was a very important thing: the feeling of being a little part of something big.

But it’s not just the gap in age, things are different. Kids really look different than we did, and they seem to have different values. While it was normal to have some sort of sloppy style in our times, today seems to be all about the looks. All these emos with their dyed and perfectly in-place-hair, I don’t get it. And the bands they listen to…

That’s when it hit me like a big wiking slapping a dead, cold fish in your face. What was going on when I was younger, and what I was a part of, that was a trend, limited in time (as they all are). It was the big wave of melodic punk rock, and I think we entered it around it’s peak. NOFX, Rancid, Reel Big Fish – there were so many concerts of our favourite bands, and so many people going. I genuinely believed that things were always, and would always stay, like this. But wasn’t, and it didn’t. Many of “our” bands still exist, but a lot of them don’t get to play as big shows as they did, this generation of rock is slowly fading away. So I believed to have found something great, as if made for me. Turns out it probably wasn’t a heavenly coincidence, I was just a mere child of my time.

And that brings me to another question: What if I was ten years younger today? Would I listen to all these pop-emo-bands? Would I dye my hair black/blonde and spend hours in front of the mirror every day? I’d say no assertively, but how can I tell? I just went with the underground flow back then – whitout even realising it – why wouldn’t I just go with the underground flow today? These two bands played at the warped tour, whose line-up used to be almost exactly in line with my taste seven years ago. And now this. Oh my Zeus. I really think that shit is worse than what we were/are into. In what possible universe could I listen to that ridiculous crap? Arrrgh, is my mind playing tricks on me now? I think I’m cracking up. Or am I just paranoiod?

Now I really start to understand my dad who keeps listening to music from the sixties and seventies. It makes perfect sense. You just stay with what you know and what you used to like – and it’s not so bad. And the people saying punk is dead, I get them too. Their punk is dead, like mine is dying.

Chances are that I’m not the first human in history who actually, objectively, listened to better music  in his youth (or did other things better, for that matter – I think this doesn’t apply to music) than a younger generation. I’m probably just an old fart not getting it. I can already hear my future kids making fun of me for liking the Foo Fighters. And for going to see 70 year old Dave Grohl act on stage like he’s still 35. Haha, imagine that.

We have to talk!

•October 21, 2009 • 1 Comment

What’s with all the frostiness lately? A bit more than a week ago we were walking around in shorts and Tee-Shirts. And now? Scarfs, gloves, beanies. I have various friends that are flying/have flown to other continents and hemispheres where it is warm and fuzzy and it’s making me kind of jealous. I should ignore it but thanks to world wide voyeurism that’s not so easy.

Yes, I did it. I just babbled about the weather. Babbling about the weather gets a lot of bad press. I’ve heard people say that’s how they picture hell: one big, endless babble about the weather. Why? What’s the problem? First of all: What’s going on in the sky affects our lives, pretty big time. If you grow up in hot and sunny Spain, you’ll likely have a different mentality than someone who was born in rather cold and rainy London – and the climate certainly has an influence on that. There’s more: What about holidays, nights on the beach, City-Trips? All these potentially great experiences can be pretty much ruined by water, wind and thunderstorms (like when Thor crushed the main stage at this rock festival and the Queens of The Stone Age and NIN couldn’t play – pretty bad). And what about that summer that had only three warm days? You don’t have a very fond memory of that, do you? It’s kind of a big deal, even if we don’t like do talk about it.

And another thing: Okay, maybe you are an awesome master of human interaction who knows exactly what to say to everybody all the time, even people you barely know. But guess what, many of us aren’t (I’m certainly not). A requirement of human communication are commonalities. And if we don’t know what we share with a certain person we draw on something everyone can relate to, because it’s part of everyones reality: you guessed it, the weather. It’s funny that people who aren’t exactly wizards of small talk seem to complain most about it. Embrace it, it’s our swiss army knife. Be glad to have something to talk about with this guy from the office on the second floor you see every other day at the snack machine.

We are social beings and we need to be in touch with conspecifics, sometimes even the ones we don’t have anything in common with. You can’t just keep quiet. You can’t get out of the game, not communicating is communicating too – and sends a very clear message. Small talk doesn’t need any substance, it’s just a way of saying “I recognize and accept you as a fellow human being”.  Too much substance can even be counterproductive. Try saying this to your elevator-aquaintance: “Have you ever thought about that this day is the closest one to our deaths, like, ever?” Of course you could look for other commonalities that everyone shares, but they are rare and often not very suited for light conversation. “So how’s your bovel movement been lately?”

Not really. So stick to the weather talk, and do it proudly. It’s cool.

I almost called this post “dance like noboy’s watching”

•September 1, 2009 • 3 Comments

Hey fellas, it’s time for another update. Or this blog is going to be a joke, and I won’t let that happen. I’m just having a hard time being consistent in these things. I’m kind of like a match. At first, I flame up really bright, but after a short time, the enthusiasm fades. Well, enough whining and self-reflection, we’re not on lifejournal, are we? I actually have something to say:

What did you have for lunch four days ago? What were you reading in the newspaper on your way to work (or in a “newspaper” on your way home)? Can’t remember? No worries, it most probably wasn’t worth remembering – most of the things that happen to us all day aren’t. Now think of your dearest childhood memory. Your first kiss. The concert of your all time favorite band. You could probably talk about any of these memories for hours. Your brain has saved them in a special place. I really love thinking back to this night a few years ago: It was the last night of a good friend here in Switzerland before he left for a few months. We played in a band together and we were supposed to have our last show. But then, in the last minute, the host of the event didn’t let us play. We promised ourselves to get so drunk on free drinks until someone would throw up on the floor at this event. Ah, I’m digressing. I just wanted to say that night was just great, my favorite people were there, we shared so many laughs, so many good feelings, it was magical. And no, noone threw up (at least not on that floor).

I like to call these great memories ‘Moments Worth Remembering’, or short MWR™ (heh, I should write a book called “How to make as many MWR™’s as possible – ten steps to a better life”). Now, as I said, most moments in our life aren’t like this. It’s no big deal, our brain just works this way. It’s not because it doesn’t have a huge capacity, it would just be very disturbing and unnerving to remember every single detail of every single day. There’s a lady in the United States that could tell you a thing or two about it. She has this condition that she can’t forget any new memories, and that’s been going on for decades. She remembers what shoes she wore on 12 December 1984. That shows what our brain’s capable of. Anyway, we really don’t want an extreme thing like that. But, think for a second; do you have enough MWR™’s in your life? Are you sure? If you’re young you should now start thinking about how you create more. Because of two reasons: Firstly, when you’re older you’ll be able to look back at all these nice times and feel good about them. Regret is one of the worst feelings known to man (that’s why I bought my glasses at Fielmann). And secondly, it just improves your life. Every moment that your brain saves in that special place is a good moment, and everyone should strive for as much of these as possible.

So, homework: Think about ways to improve your MWR™-Quota right now. Then, start doing them… is there anything better than thinking: I know, this moment is so great I’ll remember it forever? Don’t fucking wait for these to happen. Make them happen. Pursue them actively. And then soak them up. What are you waiting for? What stupid foto did you comment on facebook yesterday? What stupid quizzes did you play? What stupid blogs were you reading? Get the fcuk out and live already!

We’d rather die of exhaustion than of boredom – and we eventually will

•August 11, 2009 • 1 Comment

Did you know there are not only endangered animal species, but also endangered words? Words that for some reason are hardly used any more and could soon be forgotten. Like “Compossible”, which means ‘possible in coexistence with something else’. Hmmm, I think this word is kinda rad. I should go and adopt it if noone else has done that already. There are german words too that are threatened by extinction, like ‘Hitparade’, ‘Bredouille’ or ‘blümerant’ (this one is awesome, it means slightly ill).

There’s another word that’s not appearing on these lists, but I’m pretty sure will disappear in the course of this century. The word I’m talking about is boredom. It’s not that there are other words that are more used would squeeze it out of the language, it’s just that the concept of boredom itself is about to become obsolete. Think about it. When was the last time you were bored? Okay, the last time you were bored and your internet-connection was not broken. It just doesn’t happen to me any more. Not that I’m constantly doing things, but there are always a million things I could or should do. My list of books to read is growing much faster than I can read. I should play more guitar and drums. I should learn spanish. Update this blog more regularly. Exercise more. And there’s this song that has no chorus. Don’t get me wrong, I spend a great deal of time not doing any of these things, I just always feel I should be doing them. So either I’m actually working through to-do-lists and feel okay or apply myself to distractions – be they smart (dexter, six feet under, how I met your mother) or dumb (Facebook, looking for nude pics of Kate Winslet) and feel terrible about it. Whatever happened to the good old feeling of having no idea what to do? It would be so relaxing.

But no, boredom in the 21st century of the first world, it just seems incompossible. Everybody has more to do than time on their hands, and there is a growing movement that tries to find techniques to handle that: Time management, sleep optimization, life hacking, speed reading. Speed reading is great, by the way. I once took a course and then I was able to read ‘War and Peace’ in ten minutes. It’s about Russia. Haha… Actually I stole that joke from Woody Allen. Anyway, there’s this big blog called Zen Habits which is about ‘simple productivity’. It’s full of irony, because the Author is just so obsessed with optimizing and simplyfing life that it’s just not Zen at all. How are you supposed to be really relaxed if you’re constantly thinking about how you to take care of your wife, the five kids, run the next marathon, sleep less, squeeze more meaningful activity into your day, get rid of your belly etc.? The funny thing is, I’m kind of part of all this myself. I just can’t elude it. Sometimes I just want to be carefreely bored again. Anyone feel the same?

4 great Ways to save money in the recession

•August 3, 2009 • Leave a Comment

I’ve been doing some research and I’ve noticed that Blog-Posts with lists are immensely popular. Especially when there are lists with tips and how-to’s involved. And because I’m not here for the fun of it but for the fame, I’m going to start making list-posts this instant. This is my ticket out of here. I’m going to get so many hits and diggs and del.icio.us-whatevers that I’ll be able to blog full time, and then I’ll program some sort of list-post bot that will generate random lists for me, while I’ll be in Saint Tropez on my Yacht, partying with all my friends, and hookers, and coke. Man, I’ts gonna be great, I can’t wait for it. So, enough beating around the bush, I present you the greatest tips that will get you through this recession.

1. Stop eating
Eating is cool and fun and all, but it has some serious downsides. For one it can make you fat and sick if you do it wrong. And then it’s just damn expensive. Just think about how much you spent eating and drinking (alcohol excluded, that’s vital) the last month. See? So just cut it alltogether and save your money for more important stuff like weed or videogames. “But how am I supposed to survive without eating?” you ask? What a dumb question. Have you never heard of breathetarianism? Where the hell do you live? It’s there, it exists. There’s a wikipedia page about it – so it has to be possible, right? It’s a no-brainer, because you will not only save vast amounts of money, you’ll lose weight too. Except maybe if you live in the mountains and breathe a lot of good, high quality air – that must have a lot of calories. I would join you doing this, but I’m already a vegetarian. It would just get too complicated.

2. Start a career in drug dealing
If you want to go into the drug selling business, now is the time. Think about it: All these unemployed people will look for distraction and substances that make them feel better – even if they don’t have a lot of money. They will spend more wisely, meaning: for drugs. If you don’t know how to do it, there are a lot of good educational films like How high, Requiem for a dream, Blow or Trainspotting that will give you all the knowledge that you need. This is your time, grab the opportunity!

3. Ask your parents for money
That’s what you’ve been doing all your life, why should you change something about it now? Or if you are a parent and have kids that are working, you can of course beg them. If they say no show them newspaper articles about the economic crisis and how serious it is. They won’t be able to refuse then. And if they still do, just ask your bank for some money. Or just use your credit card(s) until they overheat, even if you have no money on your bank account. Wait, isn’t this kind of behaviour what brought us into this mess in the first place? Nah, that’s probably just the media telling lies.

4. Start blogging and get rich
That’s the path I chose to take. Cause, you know, it’s just the easyest one. I think it’s going pretty swell so far. I’m sure very soon WordPress, or Google, or whoever earns money from my ingenious ramblings will send me a cheque so big I’ll be able to jog around it for exercise. Awesome. I think I’m gonna go and quit my job right now.

That’s it for today, I wish you a happy recession and good luck with my tipps. Oh, I should say I don’t take responsibility for any side effects that might arise from using them. Not that anything could happen, it’s just a standard sentence I use at every end of my list-posts. I even think it’s a legal requirement for list-posts.