Is there a Doctor around?

No. Not yet, at least.

After taking the proud decision last year to pursue a career in science, I thought happily “Well, that was easy.” Little did I expect to hear, that there is a need for money that has to be spent on me so I can actually poke around nature’s belly button to uncover unheard of truths. It went a bit back and forth, last year about if and how and where money will be available to fill my bank account to new highs (record lies at about 25,97 EUR). But then, for Christmas, I got the best gift ever. A toaster. And also the news that some big fund giver is actually giving funds to a project.

And now I had two brief and good meetings to agree on the details and it looks like I will start learning about doctorage starting from March this year. That is, if the TU Berlin is able to give me my graduation stuff from when I graduated by graduating.

I am pretty excited now, typing cheerfully on my freshly updated little computer touchy thingy while listening to some guy munching an apple on the train. Munch munch sob munch scsscchhhhllllrlrrrrffffff goes the guy. I go like “fuck you, guy, you can’t annoy me, not today.” Maybe I punch his face in later, but that is just one option.

I now have about one short month left until the serious business starts, with learning and working and such. Everybody tried to really make sure that I was serious about this and in the end I doubted my decision, but not much. I heard that even Australians are managing to do a PhD project, so how hard can it be? During February I have to use all the time for my favourite free time activities, that are gaming, spamming the interwebs, sleeping and eating. Quite a schedule.

Stay tuned folks for more tales of the brave PhD-Man who did what hardly anyone did before. A PhD!!

wooooooo! Confetti!

Song for the day: Fell in Love with a girl – The White Stripes.

This is what would be called in German a “Brett”. Straightforward guitar in the face, a crazy drummer girl doing the bumda bumdada da and less than 2 minutes in total. Bam.

And the video is awesome, too. The White Stripes wanted to publish a limited edition single that comes with a bag of LEGO to build your own meg and jack, but LEGO didn’t want to cooperate, claiming they target children and not adults. So the single came out without the LEGO, the video got hugely popular and LEGO was like “maybe now we can arrange a deal, sir white?” and Jack White was like “Screw you!”. So no official White Stripes LEGO.

Another of the sad stories of music industry.

Watch for the day: The Furze-Colin.

What happens when you strap a jet engine to a bike frame? How can you eat cake faster? How to cut time when taking the christmas decorations off the tree?

Colin Furze knows how. He uses his engineering skills, his safety tie and a lot of craziness to solve these everyday problems, he films himself doing it and puts the bits on the internet. All while defying every single safety rule you ever heard of. Hearing protection? Nope. A helmet? Why, he has a safety tie. Playing with fire? Of course!

This guy is crazy and awesome.

Have a look at his jet engine bike, then look at the rest of his channel.

Ireland! Day Fifteen! Over at last!

Finally, the last day is there. Or sadly.

This last day was also a slow day, waking up late, packing stuff, checking out, and then a last and rushed visit to the botanical garden and the Ulster museum.

We didn’t have the chance to enter the old greenhouse in the botanical garden earlier, so we just rushed in at the last minute. It is fairly small by charming due to its age. They grow mostly only a few varieties of flowers there, probably to sell them. But still nice.

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Just across from the botanical garden lies the Ulster museum. It features a bit of everything, some arts, some nature science stuff and some history. Unfortunately we couldn’t take photos inside, but sometimes it is nicer to look at the exhibitions through ones eyes and not through a viewfinder. 

The museum’s setup was quite interesting, as it spiralled down from the top. You just follow a path and little by little you descend through the building to arrive at the exit. The top two floors featured fashion and object art, photography and paintings, lots of boats, but also other painting from Pissarro and Beuys. And a great photo series from Paul Sewright’s set “invisible cities”. Here is a link to look at some of the photos on his website.

Further down we passed a lot of taxidermy (what is the corresponding verb, dear English speakering personas?) of animals from the region. I liked the birds.

Then we went through the history department, starting from the early findings of pre-historical settlements  through the medieval and industrialised periods of Northern Ireland and kind of finishing with the conflict in Northern Ireland. This last part was especially well done, trying to present facts and only little to no judgement over either sides. I believe it is quite difficult to get a neutral narrative going on, when the peace treaty is only in place for some 15 years now.

Unfortunately we were in a hurry and couldn’t read as much as we wanted throughout the exhibitions. The explanations to everything were done in a way that you could get the amount of information you liked, with some general points to put the pieces in context and very detailed descriptions if you are interested in learning more. I guess this way it is interesting for families, were the children can just get the general ideas and the parents don’t have to get bored if they know a bit already, as they can always learn more.

We then returned to the hostel, grabbed our stuff, took the bus to the airport, the plane to amsterdam, waited an hour in line for the easyjet counter, and finally flew home.

Northern Ireland was a great place to visit. I especially enjoyed the landscapes and the local people. But you should definitely get a car or some other means of transportation as the public transport covers the important bits, but not necessarily the beautiful ones.

We will certainly go back there, and also visit the republic of Ireland, to see the true Ireland a bit more.

So this travel reporting comes to an end here, but more reports on other trips will follow.

Cheers.

MAKE ME A SAMMICH. Dönerstyle (kind of)

I love sandwiches in any form. Be it a proper cheese and ham sandwich, a burger, a falafel, an egg benedict or just some filled pita bread. Today however I felt like giving a Döner a try, homemade. Of course I had to cheat a little bit, as I don’t have a spit roasting thing, but I came quite close to what I wanted to get to.

Party for your right to fight! (get back in the cab!)

Fight For Your Right – Revisited from Martuns on Vimeo.

I just feel like it today. Also the first intro beat (make some noise) is one the fattest that ever tickled my eardrums.

Was ich lese.

Ich lese keine Zeitungen, weil diese mein Geld wollen und mir dafür nur paraphrasierte Agenturmeldungen bieten. Vom Vortag.

Ich lese die Zeitungen auch nicht so oft online, weil hier noch seltener echter Content geboten wird, und der Fokus auf Clickbait wie Bildstrecken und Boulevardmeldungen liegt. Außerdem gibt es kein brauchbares Bezahlmodell, das einem das Gefühl gibt, brauchbaren Journalismus zu unterstützen.

Was ich allerdings viel und gerne lese, sind Blogs. Ich habe ein paar Lieblinge in meinem rss reader feedly, der die Rolle vom Google Reader übernommen hat, als dieser von Google kaltblütig ermordet wurde.

Ich lese gerne, was andere lesen, um neuen Content zu entdecken, und darum teile ich jetzt hier, was ich so lese. Ich habe mir zwar angewöhnt, auf diesem Blog viel Englisch zu schreiben, allerdings sind fast alle meine rss feeds in deutsch, warum also nicht auch in deutsch darüber schreiben.

Ireland! Day Fourteen! It does not stop!

We had a great calm night in the new room that was only shared by us two and not by the snoring smelly rhino, although I missed him a bit.

The next day we thought about doing a tour of all the famous stuff in the city from when catholics and protestants were hitting each in the heads, but then we didn’t really feel like it. Instead we took a bus up to a hill that overlooks all of Belfast north of the town. Taking the bus is a bit scary, as only major stops are depicted on the maps, and you have to trust your driver when you ask him if he was going where you wanted to go. Our driver reassured us that he was indeed going towards the mountain and at some point he more or less yelled “NOW!” and we hurried to get off the bus.

We arrived at the Belfast Zoo which lies at the base of said hill, I will just now call Mount Doom for ease of writing, and our guide book told us, that there was a way to go from the Zoo to a little castle on Mount Doom. And indeed there was, but not quite as we expected. A muddy path crawls behind the Zoo upwards. And unlike Berlin, where you can see at least one animal that isn’t a pigeon from outside the Zoo when you pass by, in Belfast you only see concrete walls, barbed wire and reinforced fences. The path consisted mostly of large patches of mud and some slippery stones and slopes. At some point we had to make our way across 10 meters of heel deep mud by jumping from stone to stone. Doro was cursing like a sailor. I never heard her curse like that before or after. We just made it across the mud pit when a group of 4 joggers arrived and went “Hep Hep Hep Hep” while passing us, their legs muddy up to the knee.

The weather was grey and foggy and so the day looked pretty shitty. Crawling next to a fence through mud is not exactly what we intended to do.

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We then slowly climbed to the peak area of Mount Doom. Doro said it would be nice if it would start to rain. It then started to rain.

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Up on the side of Mount Doom was this cave you see below and we went to take a look at it. Looking down Mount Doom was just a vast area of greyness.

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When we arrived at the cave’s entrance, we turned around to see that in that exact minute the skies cleared up, the sun shined on our faces and all the clouds moved away to annoy someone else.

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The view then was most spectacular, we could watch the big boats arriving in the harbour of Belfast, look out to the see and all around us was sunshine and happiness. Yay!

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While we stood there, admiring the scenery, me getting all sentimental and crying about the beauty of the day and God’s holy creation that we could witness, I was pulled out of my tranquillity by Doro fistpunching me in the kidneys. Twice. A young guy walked over the hill next to us. “Hello! How are you doing!”, was what I said. “Oh, ihr seid auch aus Deutschland.” was his answer. Great. So much for my English skills. He then presented himself to be a lone wanderer of the Belfast area, originating from the Bodensee in Germany. We had a chat and he pointed us in the direction he came from to get to the castle that was our original goal. We said farewell, he went on and we went where he came from.

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The forest we entered looked suiting to Mount Doom, green and mossy and like it was bursting with witches and alike.

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But it wasn’t. The evil that lied within it was far beyond the evil of witchcraft. We took a turn at one point to get further down Mount Doom in direction of the castle I will now call Minas Tirit for no apparent reason. The slopes got more slippery and Doro had to do some impressive moves to avoid falling. So did I. But luckily I was the bearer of the camera and so it is not captured how I tumble down Mount Doom.

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It soon appeared to us that we took a turn for a mountain bike downhill course. This paths are not made for walking. Although I can’t imagine how to survive riding a bike on a muddy slippery slope down Mount Doom, some people must have done that regularly. We found bike tracks and later on some ramps for jumps.

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Then it happened. Although I descended Mount Doom lightfooted like a woodelf and fell and buried the camera in mud. Fun times. Luckily we soon found a way off this God forsaken bicycle track back to a normal route and we soon approached Minas Tirit. A lovely castle, often booked by wedding people to wed people together somehow. We walked over nicely kept lawns, me covered in mud, exhausted and not in the best mood. We headed straight into the washing rooms where we removed what we could of all the mud we brought.

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I cleaned the camera and as we (or rather Doro) spent a lot of money on the camera it was actually water and dust sealed and could basically just be rinsed with water until it was clean. My leg still looked muddy for the rest of the day.

So finally, this is the castle of Minas Tirit.

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The garden tells some kind of story of how the earl of the castle set himself on fire and jumped of a very high thing and fell into the town like a human torch, but unlike the friend of Mr Spandex, Invisible Girl and Dwayne Johnson he wasn’t able to fly like a bird. To tell the story a number of cats was hidden in the garden. Hidden as in there was a mosaic or a statue or picture. See if you can find them all on the pictures that follow up.

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These stairs are mainly used by newly marriaged people to stumble and fall down while the guests are laughing at them. Very nice thing to see.

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These are for friendzoned men and their crushes. Quite close but with an uncrossable gap.

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This sign tells the story of how the castle’s inhabitants (servants for weddings) are lucky as long as a cat lives on the premises. As cats are known to chew on headphone cables the servants thought to be clever by hiding cat shaped objects in the garden. Kind of similar to the way they wanted to tell the story of the Earl of Minas Tirit and his torch experience.

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This is me ignoring the fact that the cat is dead, because she messed with Goldfinger.

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I then lost a part of my backpack somewhere and despite looking for it we couldn’t find it. Mmh. We then descended from Mount Doom back into the civilisation. When we turned around we were stunned by the giant’s face that was visible against the sky. WE WERE WALKING ON A GIANT’S HEAD ALL THE TIME!?! We were so lucky not to have woken him. The locals say that the giant’s face looks like Napoleon. But I don’t see the afro anywhere. Or the moonboots.

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Nearly done now! Only a few dozen posts about Ireland left before I can talk to you again about my food and the stuff I don’t like!

Huzza!

 

yeah, it’s like seven bags.

 

via 9gag.

Ireland! Day Thirteen! Just look at this city!

It is dark outside, grey, my nose is running, I cough occasionally, what better thing is there to do then to finish up my master piece of how I went to Ireland and came back.

What happened so far: We arrived in Belfast the day before, found an amazing tent full of fancy veg, browsed the southern area of Belfast and then headed back to the hostel, after having some mediocre fish and chips and place calling itself “The best fish and chips”. It was not.