Did I Say That?

random thoughts and other junk

Thursday, March 24, 2005

Quickly then

This week has been kinda hectic, to say the least. It started last thursday actually, when I agreed to play a volleyball tournament on saturday. The tournament was quite fun, we didn't play that good, but hey, you can't have everything when you have to find three volunteers every game.
The only downside to it was that it completely messed up my schedule for this week. Monday I bought 36 liters of ground, on tuesday I bought a pottery and murdered a Zamioculcas zamiifolia, on wednesday I bought a new one and potted it. Today I picked up a parcel at the post office so I could scrape another item of my "Meat Loaf items missing from my collection list", played some more ball and started typing this, after which I'm going to get some more beer. Tomorrow some more shopping (which I planned to do last saturday) and going to my parents' for the Easter-weekend.

It's almost as if I got a life.

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Like I said I would...

In a post I made a while ago, I said I'd give an explanation as to why I chose some songs for the "3rd ever-so-often 700MB audio collection with a bad case of non-sensible logic". Well here it comes. And just like the 700MB CD itself, don't expect much logic.

Acda en De Munnik - Van De Regels En Het Spel [03:40]
Acda en De Munnik never really wrote sappy lovesongs with ditto lyrics, but it seems to me that they're just getting better at it. I think this is really a good example of that.
Aerosmith - All Your Love [05:29]
With Aerosmith you have two distinctive phases, and I like the earlier, bluesy era best. When they did this kind of stuff.
Bløf - Twee Koude Handen (unplugged) [04:45]
Just listen to the harmony vocals.
Bon Jovi - Everyday [03:45]
The original version of this song is quite mediocre. This slowed down version works much, much better.
Brigitte Kaandorp - Leven Zonder Angst (live) [04:20]
"And then I looked at you / And then I wanted to hit you / 'Cause you were so obnoxiously right..."
Bruce Dickinson - Broken [04:00]
Originally, I wanted to make a huge kind of statement with my selection. Guess when I decided to throw this one in.
Bruce Springsteen - Youngstown (live) [06:23]
In the last year or so, I'm really starting to dig Springsteen. Which has, of course, absolutely nothing to do with the fact that he writes the same kind of epic stuff as uncle Jimmy. That's just coincidence.
Cher - Just Like Jesse James [04:07]
It was either The Shoop Shoop Song (It's In His Kiss) or this one. And it became this one for no good reason at all, really.
Chris Caffery - Fade Into The X [05:13]
Since Savatage only released one album in the past seven years, some solo projects emerged. And this one wasn't bad at all.
Deep Purple - Soldier Of Fortune [03:13]
While touring in support of their mellow(-ish) "Damnation" album, Opeth covered this song, while suggesting to look up the original. Which I did.
Elton John - Your Song [04:02]
I just like this song, 'kay?
Empyrium - Ode To Melancholy [08:47]
On the very first part of this 700MB CD series, I threw in a song from the last album Empyrium did before they split up. "Ode To Melancholy" comes from their second album "Songs of Moors and Misty Fields" when they still were doomy metalheads.
Erik Norlander - Mariner (live) [07:24]
Mr. Norlander considers this to be the definitive version of "Mariner". Quite rightly so.
Gary Hughes - Dragon Island Cathedral [06:03]
One of the very first songs I threw in my pre-selection, and not once did I reconsider. Maybe it's here just because of the intro, but who really cares?
Golden Earring - Angel [03:42]
They didn't have a song that I considered to be good enough for the first part, on the second part they weren't allowed due to some stupid rule, so now they're in.
Jim Steinman ft. Rory Dodd - Surf's Up [05:25]
Jimmy. Who needs another reason? And for those who do, two words: Rory Dodd.
Koekie Monster - Ik Verloor M'n Koekie In De Disco [03:50]
Me lost me cookie in the disco! And I want it back, I want it back right now!
Lana Lane - The Wall [04:56]
After "Secrets of Astrology" on part one, time for a ballad on part 3.
Lisa Loeb - Fools Like Me [03:38]
My #1 song of 2004.
Meat Loaf - Life Is A Lemon And I Want My Money Back (live) [06:05]
Quite to the contrary of what some people might think, it's quite hard to pick a song from mr. Loaf. This one became it for the simple reason that it sounds nothing like "For Crying Out Loud".
Opeth - Deliverance [13:36]
That riff at the end of the song just slays. And once again, this track showcases the other side of a band I included on an earlier part.
Otis Reading - (Sittin' On) The Dock Of The Bay [02:44]
And I don't mind something mellow at all. Like this one.
Paul De Leeuw - Ik Wil Alles Met Je Delen (live) [03:13]
If bad taste isn't allowed, we really shouldn't be making these CDs.
Savatage - The Wake Of Magellan [06:10]
Another case of "different side of the same band".
Sergei Rachmaninov - Rhapsody On A Theme Of Paganini (excerpt) [04:07]
Just listen.
Simon and Garfunkel - The Sound Of Silence (single version) [03:03]
After Arie threw in a cover on part deux, I realized that the original is so much better.
Slash's Snakepit - Back And Forth Again [05:55]
Yeah, well... you need something to fill up that 170MB, don't ya. And I don't mind this at all.
Stoney And Meatloaf - What You See Is What You Get [02:11]
The only time you can spell Meat Loaf as Meatloaf and get away with it, is with a track from his "wijde-pijpen-soul-plaat". Which is something you should've heard, if only to realize that there's more to the man than that goddamn song.
Symphony X - Evolution (The Grand Design) [05:20]
My first encounter with Sir Russell Allen was on Ayreon's "Dawn Of A Million Souls". It took me some time to get into his regular band, but then I really got it. Pay special attention to the catchy chorus.
Tenacious D - Keep On Lovin' You (live) [02:13]
Listen to the guitar solo, and you know why it's in there.
Trans-Siberian Orchestra - Requiem (The Fifth) [02:58]
Take 1 part Van Beethoven's Fifth Symphony in C Minor (opus 67), 1 part Mozart's Requiem, 1 part Savatage, shake, and voila.
T-Rex - Children Of The Revolution [02:28]
From the soundtrack of one of my (current) favorite movies, Billy Elliot.
Veronica Hart and Dean Collinson - Tire Tracks And Broken Hearts [03:13]
Three Steinsongs on the same volume seems to be a tradition, so I see no reason to change that. From Andrew Lloyd Webber and Jim Steinman's "Whistle Down The Wind".

Monday, March 07, 2005

And I've had my doubts about Belgium.

Which I did. Some days before I left I started wondering if it really was a smart thing to do. Not feeling all too well, not a clue what to do in Liege, and worried if I might be able to enjoy myself, on my own, in a city where I don't know anyone or anything.

I went anyway. On my way from Amersfoort to Rotterdam I thought I noticed the snow getting thinner, and between Rotterdam and Antwerpen I came to the conclusion that by the time I reached Brussels the grass would be green and the sun would be shining. Wrong on both counts. The sun did not shine, it was cold and snowing.
And when you are in Brussels for two days, what do you do? Well, you go see Manneke Pis. And he was pissing alright. And then I did the whole culture thing: saw some churches, visited some museum, went to some classical lunch-concert kind of thing, walked around quite a bit, saw two movies (Ray, which wasn't bad at all, and Oceans Twelve, by lack of something more interesting). Brussels was quite alright, although the bed in my hotel was a bit on the short side.

But at least that bed was not as uncomfortable as the one in Liege. And I can be quite short about that city. Just as Hamburg and Rotterdam, not quite my thing. Mon français est très horrible, but still way better then the collective knowledge of the English and Dutch languages of all the people I've encountered there. But in the end, it wasn't all that bad, but I was glad it only lasted a day.

Then, the next day, I took the train to Merleux-Hotton. On the map it looked like quite a reasonably-sized village, so I thought that finding some bar/diner/snackbar kind of place would be a piece of cake. Well, Melreux-Hotton turned out to be a wide place in the road, with an bar right across from the station where you wouldn't want your mother-in-law to be found dead. There wasn't anykind of place that would serve any kind of food anywhere near except from the local supermarket, so all in all, I spend far too much time there doing far too less of anything I would've liked to be doing.

Finally, I was saved by some friends, and spend three and a half days doing not all that much in another wide place in the road called Blier. Bit of cooking on Saturday (when in Rome, do as the romans do, so when in Belgium, throw a lot of Belgian beer in your food), which was received quite well. Shoving all false down-to-earthness aside, it was quite good.
The whole weekend was, well, relaxed. I enjoyed myself a lot. As I did most of the week, which was quite relaxed all in all.

As a final observation: I noticed that in Belgium you can cross the street as a pedestrian quite easily. You can signal what you want, give 'em the "well, go, 'cause I got all the time in the world" flick of the wrist until your wrist goes numb, these kind tamers of the Holy Cow do the same thing.

But here in The Netherlands, you need to have some small child on your arm before a cop on a scooter might even consider slowing down for you. On a freaking parking lot. Shees. Where's the local rent-a-kid?