I am quite angry right now. The wonderful RENFE is the target. I am already over the fact that the computer system often collapses, leaving the trains and the platform signs unmatched and that sometimes the trains have no labels at all. I digested the fact that two weeks before the closure of the aorta of Madrid, El Túnel de la Risa, almost nobody in my lab knew about it, all being surprised when I told them. But today the amateurism has reached a new level. I wanted to take the train to Cantoblanco, obviously because of the swimming pool. Last week they started remodelling of the Recoletos station by taking off the tiles and the station air is basically filled with a cement dust. As soon as I was inside the station, already using my ticket, they announced that we would have to wait 50 minutes for the next train. Imagine: breathing the cement dust for 50 minutes! They didn't bother to put any note on the door of the station, even though it's clearly a planned activity so I could save my ticket and take a metro to the Chamartín station, for instance. Ironically, on the platform there were three security guys chatting. One of them could put such a note on the door, don't you think? So I turned around and went back home. In German, there is a beautiful word that my teacher in the elementary school used a lot when describing such working morals: "die Schlamperei".
In the '90s I couldn't care less who would win the Battle of Britpop, because neither Blur nor Oasis affected me as much as Suede did. Therefore I missed this gem from the Parklife album by Blur. L'année dernière à Marienbad revisited.
Today I saw "Fast Food Nation", a fiction movie based on a non-fiction book sharing the same name. It's an extremely political endeavour. Yes, it's merely predictable and plain, but the strength of the message reminded me of Crash, my favourite movie of 2004. Crash was criticized for being obvious, for showing things that everybody knows. Yet it was the very same experience I carry with me, for good or bad, from the five years I spent in Southern California. Similarly, everybody knows how bad is the globalized food industry, but we do nothing about it. MEAT IS MURDER.
Cpl. Trent Thomas, a Marine who faced a possible life sentence in connection with abduction and slaying of an Iraqi civilian is going to go free. He initially pleaded guilty in January as part of a deal that would have sent him to prison for 12 years. At the time, Thomas admitted having taken part in the killing, saying his unit “wanted to make a statement that Marines were sick and tired of being bombed and stuff.”
It's really cool how the living languages use and modify what is available around. Take the "@" sign. Couple of months ago, it was just a part of the e-mail address for me, e.g. firstname.lastname@example.org means the address of John who has an e-mail account at Gmail. Sometimes I used the sign to express "at" in general: Let's meet @ 2pm. But in Spanish I see it often being used as a gender-neutral way how to address a group of people: chic@s or tod@s. Pretty amazing, huh?
This must have been one of the best use of music in the movie. Everything fits perfectly, the picture speeds up or slows down to follow the beat. Awesome. (Tears for Fears: Head Over Heels in Donnie Darko.)
The Beckhams are moving to LA today. I think the both sides of the Pond are happy but from opposite reasons. The Pink is the New Blog cries today: "They're almost here ... and then the fun really begins. There has been much anticipation of their arrival ... it's gonna be great having them here in town."My goodness, why are some Americans so deeply and insanely stupid?
My father is a professor, he wears glasses and his build is quite impressive. Every time we went for a family vacation, he could be sure that somebody would ask him for directions at the most peculiar places. An old Italian woman would ask him where to find some tiny street in a small Italian village. Carrying a camera and a map, he would still be asked for a location of a local city council in Vienna. Well, why am I writing this... Even though I look like a 100% guiri (not from a concentrate, but wearing shorts), three families stopped me on the street today to ask me for directions. It runs in a family I am afraid.
On July 7th, 2003, the Mars Exploration Rover B, known as Opportunity, was sent to Mars. The probe was launched less than a month after its twin, known as Spirit. After successful landing on the Meridiani Planum, the Opportunity probe started to study a history of flowing water there. The rover mission was extended from the original 90 days to more than three years of a breathtaking flow of data with Opportunity becoming the first probe to travel more than 10 kilometers on the Martian surface!
Diario ADN, Lunes 2 de julio de 2007: Los príncipes Guillermo y Enrique presentan el gran show celebrado ayer en London Londres. WTF? I always thought they were British and baptized as William and Henry...