Thursday, December 31, 2015

The 1st Annual Blogbuster Award

Since, we had the annual review this year already, I’ve decided to end the blog year with an award ceremony post. You will find out the post I liked most, which picture you shouldn’t miss, and which makeup artist did the best job - just kidding, no makeup artist. Blogbuster was the original name of my blog and hence the name Blogbuster award.
If you don’t want to read all my posts, if you are not interested in how my wisdom teeth were removed or how I cast my vote, you will find out in a moment which post are worth to read. Those of you who read all posts and enjoyed them, will probably enjoy this review, and maybe read again the winning posts... and the nominees... before reading the teeth removing post again. 

Best Title
A good title represent the content without revealing to much and catches the interest of the reader. Blogbuster titles of written posts are based on movie titles.
Nominated for best title are:

And the winner is:

Interactive Award
This year, the post What does it say in English? - German Train Station Edition is awarded with the Blogbuster Interactive Award.

Best Original Picture
Nominated are:
Acropolis Selfie from Big Athens


Sunset 2


It happened again!
And the winner is:
The award ceremony will continue after a short break

 Get the free Android Baha'i calendar app here

Best Retouched Picture
Nominated are:
"Selfie stick" from the post "The Job Interview" 

"Master of No Idiom" from the post "Interrelated

"Mixed Generations" from "20 again"

"Globetrotter" from the post "The Fleeting Frontier"
And the winner is 
"Mixed Generations" from "20 again"

Video Award
This year's Video Award goes to the video "London Tower Bridge" from the post "The Londonian" which has everything a great video needs: A bridge, boats, a prince, commentaries in a genuine British English, and a refreshing feet shot angle.

Best Post
Nominated are:

"... I fool. In a few years these robot arms will learn to assemble legs for themselves and then they will rise against us..."

"... Difficult times will not last. 'Not last' is my standing in my last race..."

"... The new office is awesome and there is nothing to be embarrassed about. See for yourself- visit my office next to Reeperbahn..."

"... For the Millennial Generation: radio is a audio broadcast method that distributes live podcasts without the possibility to rewind or pause. It's like internet radio but without internet..."

"... The weather in Athens was just few degrees below room temperature, that's winter weather in Greece. All the natives were in the winter jackets, buttoned all the way up..."

"... What are your hobbies?:
I take nude selfies. I love my new selfie stick. It made so many exciting shoots possible..."

And the winner is ...

This is the first award for "Interrelated". The clear front runner has shown an outstanding mix of humor and emotions. Surprisingly, "Big Athens" didn't win any awards.

This concludes this years award ceremony. Happy new year.

PS: Join us in the next award ceremony where we are going to honor posts that didn't make it to publication.

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Relax... It's Just Switzerland

Sorry for yelling at you in my last post. The hustle in London went to my head. If I stayed longer in London, with all the tourists who take pictures from phone boots, the overground trains that operate underground, and employers who use their lunch break to run, my rage level would have raised more. Instead, I went to Zurich to come down. Switzerland is well known as a spot for recovery. It's better known yet for banks. That sounds like a cliche but it's not. I asked a group of young people who live in Zurich "who works in a bank?" Three out of five raised their hand - only three. The fourth said not yet. Four out of five - that sounds about right.  
Zurich is in the German speaking part of Switzerland. They speak Swiss German which is a dialect of German. I had no problem to read all signs and bill boards. But it was difficult for me to understand Swiss people talking while they didn't have any problems to understand my high German. So, it was the opposite of my US experience.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

The Londonian

I was in London. In my humble opinion, the best way to discover a city is by feet, so I walked a lot. It was a challenge for me not to bump into other people because they walked all on the wrong side. Everything moves on the wrong side: people, cars, escalators, trains. I know what you are about to say: "They move on the other side but that does not mean it is the wrong side." Other countries have other habits yada yada yada but they do really drive on the wrong side. England does not want to adapt to the majority. After all England is an island. I know "England is not an island, Great Britain is." Whatever.
I walked to different attractions. They have a lot of them in London. There are a lot of war monuments in London. Every members of the United Kingdom has a war memorial somewhere in London, like the Canadian memorial in Green Park close to Buck Palace.
I know what you are about to say: "Canada is not member of the United Kingdom, it is part of the Commonwealth."
Did I meet the Queen in London? No, I have not. But reliable sources suggest I saw Prince Williams.    

Wow, Prince Williams - he's going to be the next King. I know what you are about to say "Prince Williams is not next in the succession."
After my trip to Athens, I posted a selfie with the Acropolis in the background. Why not finish this post with a selfie in front of an iconic site in London? And what site would be more iconic than the tower Big Ben?  "Big Ben is not the name of the tower, it is the name of the ..." What's going on? Why are you so pernickety today? THAT'S IT - NO SELFIE FOR YOU.

Saturday, October 24, 2015

20 again

People often think I’m younger than I really am. As a kid I was really annoyed when people said “O you’re 13? I thought you're nine!” Nowadays, people make my day when they think I’m in my early twenties. I hit the big 1, and that was some years back. 

I’m posting this in the internet, which shares the same experience. When asked how old the internet is, people often think of their analog modem that made terrible noises: “That was the end of the nineties, right? Maybe 20 years give or take one or two years?” 
No, the internet started in 1969, so, it is 46 years now. Even the world wide web, or “the web”, is from 1989, so 26 years old. When people say "the internet is in it’s early twenties", they probably make internet’s day.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Advertisement 7

Read my new short story "Fred Vage" on my homepage or on medium.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Lost in Torrent

Finally, I was  on the island Sylt. The beach I went to was a beautiful one next to a nudist beach. The weather was nice, not too hot or too cold and the water temperature was pleasant, not like the other times I went for a swim. One thing that happened was I lost my glasses in the water and the torrent of water took it away before I could get it back. So, I am next to a nudist beach and the first thing I do is lose my glasses. By now, the glasses could be anywhere in the seven seas. If by any chance you find my glasses in Tanna, Vanuatu, send me a message. It’s like a message in the bottle I send just with my glasses instead of a bottle and my glasses instead of a message.
The glasses were old and didn’t fit well. Just a few weeks ago, I played basketball and several times after I made a sudden move the glasses took off my face. The flying glasses weren’t the worst thing that happened to me during that game. 

Beside the lost glasses, it was a fun trip and I could extend my extremes by a hair's breadth. It was a lot of fun. I played frisbee and Hooverball. Unfortunately, my shoulders got a sun burn and my muscles become sore from Hooverball. So now, it hurts from inside and the outside. I was worried that without glasses I wouldn’t be able to play, but I did well, as far as I could tell. Nonetheless, I want to be prepared for the unforeseen. Therefore, I am going to buy some emergency contact lenses, you know, for the next time I’m close to a nudist beach and lose my glasses.  

Saturday, August 1, 2015

It happened again!

Injured fingers become a thing on my blog.
Comparison between healthy and injured.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Front Window

Lately, I haven't posted anything. I followed my own guides and found a new job that keeps me busy. Probably, I will report more about the new job soon. Today, I'm going to talk about my office. You might have read how as a postdoc I was kept in a windowless basement that proved to be a good tornado shelter. Guests left always a comment. Like Greg and Hengameh, who after a visit made me watch office space and repeatedly asked if I also have a red stapler.
Now, that's over. The new office is awesome and there is nothing to be embarrassed about. See for yourself- visit my office next to Reeperbahn. I have finally windows- big windows. Windows from floor to ceiling from one corner to the next. From my desk, I have a view on several sites in Hamburg. Now, I enjoy the view and hope there will be no tornados.  

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Sunday, June 14, 2015


The last year was a really difficult time for me. But it also was a very creative time were I could contribute to different fields. By now, you should know I created photo series, built a garden shed, became a radio presenter and writer, gave history lessons and took you back in time, created websites, developed an app, wrote a research book chapter, and increased my paper count. I am a man of many talents - a Soroosh of all trades, master of no idiom. “Master of No Idiom” is also the name of my one man Off-Off-Broadway show.
But that’s not all. I spent some efforts into writing a novel, I started a new short story, and I invented a board game. I can’t provide any more details because I don’t like to give details before my work is done. Even, if you ask for the titles I have to say I can’t. No, literally, I can’t. I don’t have a title yet- nothing is set into stone yet. “Set into stone” is the name of my new hair gel brand. Is it important to have a title? Having no name is an option, too and works sometimes. “Works sometimes” is the name of my new airbag system.
In times like that I remember the Hidden Words by Baha’u’llah
“If poverty overtake thee, be not sad; for in time the Lord of wealth shall visit thee. Fear not abasement, for glory shall one day rest on thee.” 
Difficult times will not last. “Not last” is my standing in my last race. Life is about all the ups and downs and what you make off it, I kid you not. “I kid you not” is the title of my contraception flyer.
Actually, it's Off-Off-Off-Broadway

Saturday, May 23, 2015

The Job Interview

Lately, I had several job interviews. There are so many things you have to pay attention during interviews. So many pitfalls are just waiting for you to step into. Let me share some sentences you shouldn't use in an interview, or, as a matter of fact, anywhere.

Can you tell us something about yourself:
... I wasn't really a Star Wars guy and I didn't get it at all. But Jar Jar Binks open missa eyes to dis biiig empire.

What is your greatest strength?
I'm a trendsetter. I came up with the term yolo!

 Where do you see yourself in five years?
On a oneway trip to Mars!

What are your hobbies?:
I take nude selfies. I love my new selfie stick. It made so many exciting shoots possible.

What is your biggest weakness?
I came up with the term yolo!

What compensation are you looking for?:
One Hundert Thousand!- is it..too..much? - ten thousand maybe?

Do you have any questions?:
I do. Why did LeBron James leave Cleveland? And why did he come back?
Describe two specific goals you set.
To write a blog post about how to get rid of a repressive dictator, to spell check before publishing, to eliminate the term yolo, and to learn to count

Appropriate outfits show you are a fit for the position 

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Panic Seat

Exactly ten years ago, my wisdom teeth were removed. I could listen to music on earbuds while the procedure. Therefor, I compiled a CD with songs that I liked before I went to the operation. The surgeon injected anesthetics with a big syringe and I lost feelings in my mouth. While the oral surgeon was sawing and I was listening nervously to my music, I was wondering if in the future I will feel anxious when I hear the same music again. In other words, can the removal of teeth act as an aversion therapy? So far, I haven't notice any change.
Even my "panic attack" during the procedure didn't result in aversion. During the complete procedure while I was on the seat, I had to keep my mouth open. Because of that, I was breathing through my mouth. After the first tooth has been removed, a lot of blood flowed through the wound and filled my mouth. I couldn't breath and instinctively I started to panic. The medical staff had to calm me down. After a horrifying moment and after I had focused on breathing through my nose, the procedure could continue again.
After the procedure, I had to show off my wisdom

The next day: After a painful and sleepless night, my cheek was swollen and my mood has reached a low point

Friday, April 24, 2015

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Rise of the Industrial Machines

I was on the Hannover Messe the world's biggest industrial fair. There were a lot of boring things to see. All kind of cables, pipes, screws, more cable, small electronic devices, huge electrical transformers, and more cables. But there were also interesting things to see: Robots. There were industrial robots in different sizes.  There was a robot that was filling bottles to empty them a moment later, a robot that was placing big boxes on the assembly line and then take them down again - yes, fair robots perform sisyphus tasks. I saw two robot arms playing with a football, robot arms dancing with music and disco lights, a giant robot arm lifting a car body and swinging it around, and a humongous robot arm doing the same with two people to replace a funfair ride. We played foosball against a robot and finished with a tie by scoring a late goal.
When I entered an exhibition hall with a number of robots I thought: "Wow. how cool is that". I fool. In a few years these robot arms will learn to assemble legs for themselves and then they will rise against us. Everyone in the exhibition hall will be doomed. What am I saying - they will have legs. You will be save only on a one way trip to Mars. Everyone else will be doomed. DOOMED I say!
Our soon to be overlords 

Saturday, March 28, 2015

The Fleeting Frontier

I was thinking about all my travels. All the places I have been and the extremes I have reached. Here are my extremes (where many men have gone before):
Southernmost: 9º N in 2012  (Addis Abeba, Ethiopia); I have never touched the southern hemisphere
Westernmost: 118º15' W in 2010 (Los Angeles, California)
Easternmost: 52º E in ~1980 (Tehran, Iran); the majority of the world population have been further east!
Northernmost (ignoring flyovers): 54º45'N in ~1992 (Flensburg, Germany) 69º40' N in 2017 (Tromsø/Norway)
Highest point (ignoring airplane flights): 4286 m above sea level in 2013 (Bierstadt, Colorado); Coloradans are frenetic about hiking 14ers
Lowest point: 429 m below sea level in 2009; only few people went lower - that's how low I ride

What about you? What are your extreme points?

Update 2017: Added the Tromsø/Norway trip

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Monday, February 23, 2015

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Election 2

Election day. Once again. There are some differences in German and American elections. While the American election day is always on a Tuesday in early November, elections in Germany are Sundays without further limitations. Different elections are often on different days. For example, today is election for the state legislation in Hamburg, in four months there will be state elections in Bremen, and so on. I like the US way with one day to rule them all. You get over it and don't have to deal with elections for two more years- what am I saying, for four more years.
Electioneering is a bit different, too. Unlike America, nobody  puts any political signs in their front yard. Instead, the parties put billboards with there (non)messages and they are everywhere.
For me, it was the first election at which I could take part. For long time, I didn't have the German citizenship and soon after I got it, I left the country. Please, don't start with absentee ballots.

Streets in Germany at election times