Archive for the 'onhandig' Category

I miss my thesis, y’all.

No really, I do. I was proofreading it a few days ago and I had to resist doing some serious revisions. I’m too tired to fix anything and I need some distance, but it felt good to plunge through it again.

Epic moments of nerdiness this week:

There was a fun “deleted scene” that took place in an Anarchist run squat/ common brothel. I’ve been tempted to reinsert it.

I’ve gotten two summer internships for the summer that are in some way connected to public radio. (Symphony Space + Storycorps)

I’ve replaced the tackiness of Amherst Confessional and the Daily Jolt with online British newspapers such as the Daily Mail and the Guardian. And it’s worked.

I choose the Dutch language option on facebook, and now my wall is called “het prikbord.”

I’m considering getting a PhD. in English. Eventually.

Where dem kids? Where? Dem? Kids???

Dutch Word of the Day
droevig: tragic
Er is gewoon droevig.
That is just tragic.

Not to pick on Peek and Cloppenburg mannequins again, but this is ridiculous. These kiddy dummies are just wrong. I guess for the summer it had to look trashier. Why are their pants open? Why do they have the just been fucked look? Why are they ages 8- 12? Who put this together? At least before they looked presentable.

Children’s fashion is just going down the drain. It’s not just a Europe or Amsterdam thing, it’s a general problem at home, too. I feel like complaining to the store manager to at least zip up their pants and adjust their clothing, but I don’t want to come off as some kind of “sheltered American.” Besides, I’ve never shopped there. But really, this isn’t be OK. The littlest mannequin is particularly disturbing. I would say something…if I was able to say it in Dutch.

More like "Heineken BOO-ery!"

Dutch Word of the Day
druk: busy, crowded
De Heineken Brouwerij was veel druk.
The Heineken Brewery was very busy.

Sorry it took me so long to back to this. I don’t know why, cause I’ve been meaning to hate on this place all week.

So my brother Martin (aka Martlock, cause he’s a lawyer now) came to visit me this past weekend. It was Pentecost and everything was closed so it made it difficult to get around, but we managed. We went to to Pancake Bakery first, which was amazing as usual despite some sloooooow service. Then we decided to go to Heineken Brewery.

I thought the Anne Frank line was serious. Nope, the Brewery was even more special. But with the 11 euro entry you get three beers and a free gift (which you, thankfully, won’t get at the Anne Frank Huis). So we waited and eventually got in. It’s a very Disney looking place, all things considered. There were brightly colored displays and exhibits, and something that looked like a scene from the Haunted Castle, except involving the scientist who helped develop some kind of yeast. Basically, it’s for beer nerds.

Things were going great until we got sucked into this inexplicably long line. It was supposed to be a quick five room walk through showing the different elements that go into beer, but it was packed. We stood on it for what felt like a half hour. Turns out that there were two lines: One for the rest of the exhibit, and the other for a “ride.” Since we stayed on the line for long enough, someone (Martin) suggested that we might as well go on the ride.

OK. So this ride was supposed to mimic what it feels like to be a bottle of beer in the factory. We had to stand in a small movie theater looking room, hold some bars for safety and watch a screen, while the thing we were standing on rocked, simulating the movement of a bottle on the conveyor belts.

I was angry within seconds of getting on this “ride.” This was embarrassingly bad. This terrible music was playing in the background and none of the shots were even trying to be continuous. My brother and I just laughed the entire time. It ends with you, the “bottle”, getting put into a box and shipped somewhere. That box is then opened in a bar, and the tune “Celebrate Good Times” by Kool and the Gang plays. That’s when we really lost it.

At least we got beers at the end. But honestly, if they wanted to make us feel like bottles of beer, they should have filled us with alcohol first.


Dutch Word of the Day
het venstra:
the window

Er staat een Nederlander in mijn venstra.
There is a Dutchman in my window.

I woke up to the sound of loud Dutch and clanging metal coming from the Prinsegrancht back yard. At first, I thought they were dismantling the old bike racks in the basement. Turns out they’re building a scaffold. Right in front of my window.

Hopefully they’ll work faster than their New York counterparts. This might be a while.

Onhandig II: Supermarket

Dutch Word of the Day
een ander:

Een ander woord voor onhandig is vreeind.
Another word for awkward is…awkward.

My bankcard doesn’t work at the supermarket. Even if it did, I’d get some kind of fine from the bank for using the card overseas. So I have to have the right amount of cash when I go to “La Heijn.“

Of course, I was two euros short and had to leave behind Fanta…but I did get mango sorbet. So. Delicious. It also must’ve looked weird that I was buying a mango and mango flavored tea. I didn’t realize I had hit the trifecta of flavor obsession this until I was at the counter.

Albert Heijn is the most over represented grocery store in the world. It is to Amsteram as Duane Reade is to New York. Dirk van de Broek is much cheaper, but I’ve only seen two so far in the center. It’s not open on Sunday and is so far from where I leave that buying too much there is rather taxing on my back. I wonder if they have a slogan for Albert Heijn. Something to the effect of “walk in a line, find a Heijn” seems appropriate.

Why everyone should live in an international school dorm, at least once:

Actual conversation in my hallway:

Brazilian Guy: So tonight, I was thinking we could first go to a jazz concert-
Eastern European Guy: WHAT?
Brazilian Guy: You know, a jazz concert.
Eastern European Guy:Oooh…haha, I thought you said a jism concert.


Dutch Word of the Day
onhandig: awkward
Wel, dat was onhandig.
Well, that was awkward.

I’d like to introduce a new segment today. Hopefully, it won’t be too much of a common one, but something tells me it will be. Dutch people are often nice, practical and charming, but damn are they awkward. Combine their awkwardness with someone who doesn’t speak their language (or chooses not to) and it get’s special.

Take for example, last night. In New York, if their aren’t any cars coming you just walk across the street. Lights don’t really have a lot of sway in New York except for yellow, which means run faster. So I’m running across the street when there are no cars at all, and some cops decide to yell at me:

Cop: Rood licht!
Me (playing the American card): What?
Cop (pointing to light): Rood! Licht!
Me: I don’t speak Dutch!
Cop: Oh. Red light! You can’t go!
Me: Um…ok… (runs off to the next intersection)

Granted you need to pay attention because of the bike and tram traffic, but when no one’s there, what am I supposed to do?

January 2022
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