Monthly Archives: August 2012

The cake scale

Let them eat cake every 160.9344 km” (attrib. Queenie Marie Antoinette)

I brought my trusty push-bike and my scented running shoes to Southern Germany and though I have succeeded in re-calibrating the bike’s odometer to kilometers I am still stuck in thinking in the Queen’s finest olde Imperial.  Continue reading

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Bandes cyclables & German noodles

The Southern Rhine divides two countries and two very different cycling experiences. In the south of Germany most roads have at least one cycle path, often well removed from the roads. The French have had a go, splashed a bit of paint around, marked a few cycle lanes in cities, printed a few maps and signs but their heart isn’t in it. Continue reading

Name die Tune

Our primitive car radio cannot pick up BBC6music in the far south land. Condemned to listen to the FM stations from Germany and France has encouraged us to develop our own in-car entertainment. We call the game GEMA after the German organisation for the prevention of music. You are welcome to play this game without paying me or them any royalties. Continue reading

Fishing for Fat Lava

“Fat lava” is a term used to describe ugly German ceramics, usually vases, from the 60s & 70s. There is a European Directive that all antique shops must have a large brown Fat Lava vase in the corner for gathering dust and walking sticks. The term is now used as a interweb search key for pretty much any German ceramics from 50’s to 80’s whether or not the glaze is lava-like, thick, fat or thin, bubbly, cratered or drippy. As a result of the success of a new invasive species in Germany, Cheapus Vases Ikeas, Fat lava vases are now all migrating across the channel to make a last stick-stand in a corner of what will be forever, Retroland. Continue reading