Monthly Archives: January 2010

3D is addictive

Went to see Avatar like almost anybody else on this planet. I spent 30 minutes in the metro and much more money than I usually would for a movie: It is so worth it! As LoR fan, I really didn’t need the break in the middle of the movie. And I wish that James Cameron had spent a bit more time on the story but these images…

The OMG moment though was with the trailer for How to train your Dragon as I had seen that one before but not in 3D. I felt that I could  touch this sheep if I wanted… One is so much inside the movie.

I feel caught admitting that going back to watch a movie in 2D knowing that it is out in 3D will be a very tough choice to make.



“… has a very good, fresh, flouvery, Saaz hop aroma, a very big, creamy head, a soft malt character, and a spritzy, perfumy, fruitiness, drying toward the finish.”

Michael Jackson (not that one) in “The great beers of Belgium”

He also answered my question from the other day: “Best before” dates are nonsense. Most beers can only go downhill from the moment they leave the brewery. There are, though, important exceptions: the minority of beers that are designed to mature in the bottle. “Best before” dates do not do justice to them, either.


aka 36 hours in Brussels. Let’s see:

  1. Beers on the Grand Place – Trappist in Le Roi d’Espagne – Done
  2. Stew in Les Brassins – Done, done, done. And yes, I life in the street where Audrey Hepburn was born.
  3. Jazzy Bars… though the bar sounds kind of interesting.
  4. Break for Art Nouveau – Horta Museum – done. Pas mal… though not worth 7 euro in my point of view. I’d rather advice the Museum des Beaux Arts. 2 euro more for much more value.
  5. Moules et Frites – I know the second restaurant but not the first. On the to-do list.
  6. Yeah Flea market in Les Marolles.
  7. Any Belgian chocolate is good. The best is actually Côte d’Or chocolate spread; yamee.
  8. Royal Cuisine – … a tiny bit beyond my budget
  9. Midnight club – On the to-do-list.
  10. Le pain quotidien is way overpriced. Much better is the Sunday brunch in Le Belga – Flagey square.
  11. Château de la Hulpe – on my to-do-list since I bought the bike last summer. Seems like a really nice place to go.

I don’t know how they put that list together but if you really have bit more than 36 hours in Brussels (and enough pocket money), it is not a bad itinerary to start with.

Date de péremption*

How much time can one is it advisable to drink a beer after the expiry date?

* Verfallsdatum

A sum bigger than the parts

What I really enjoy is when the audience at the cinema starts to act like one. It’s strange, it’s funny, it’s moving. Last time at the movie theater, people starting laughing like one, clapping and enjoying the time. My seat neighbour was constantly asking her husband what this or that in the movie means. Normally, I mind; this time, I enjoyed it.

It is this feeling that you are no longer one person standing sitting amidst other equally separated people. For the best part of 2 hours, there is this group feeling; doing something together, living something together. Maybe it was just thanks to the great movie but I liked this ‘group’ spirit. Enfin, if you can call it this way.

With brown sauce

that’s how John, the main caracter of Intermission, drinks his coffee.

As much as I like brown sauce with baked beans, the idea to put something that’s made of malt vinegar, tomatoes, molasses, dates, tamarind and spices in my coffee makes me shudder.

But somewhere inside me, the curious six year old still wants to try it. I’m staggering between disgust and temptation. Guess which side will win.


I couldn’t sleep the other night. Even though my eyes were heavy with sleep, I could feel how my brain was still busy filtering, analysing and classifying information. Like tidying up a messy place, it would take one ‘item’ after the other, look at it, consider keeping it, and if yes, decide where to put it.

While it was doing this, I had a few good ideas. It was as if putting everything into drawers would allow me to think outside of the box. Kind of…

* Literally: Thinking in drawers; metaphor for thinking in stereotypes.

Unexpected resistance

I’m not that much of an advanced planner. But for once that I try, I can’t as it is not possible to book tickets with the German, French or Belgian railway service more than 3 months – 92 days to be haarspalterisch precise – in advance.

I feel like someone is having fun watching…

Les plaisirs de tous les jours

I don’t know how other people deal with this thing concept called time. Mine flies too fast for my taste. I don’t want this year to pass in the same frenzy as the last. The year has hardly started, the first week is already over, the second loaded and the third quickly approaching and… Life is too short, and to valuable, to let it slip away like this. Therefore, the resolution (hoho) to keep the eyes and ears open and see if I cannot find a special moment in each day.

Looking back, there was so far:

1. January – The walk in the snow in the park and the dinner in a pizzeria with a good friend

2. Jan. – The interesting conversation with a guy from the TÜV (MOT). Learned quite a lot.

3. Jan. – A very relaxing day at home.

4. Jan. – Spanish class cancelled. After an initial regret, the joy of having a short first day back at work.

5. Jan. – The invitation to a birthday party from someone I hardly know.

6. Jan. – Watching a beautiful sunrise over a white foggy winter landscape from the train. And, the funny conversation with my seat neighbour on the way back.

7. Jan. – Going swimming. I love water.

8. Jan. – …

9. Jan. – The birthday party.

10. Jan. – Dinner with friends – Lots of cheese on pasta always works for me.

11. Jan. – Spanish class!!

12. Jan. – First face-to-face discussion with someone I’ve been working with for 2 years. Thanks to the webcam inventors!

13. Jan. – …

14. Jan. – Swimming again. The pool in Etterbeck is definitely more modern than the VUB one; just way too crowded.

15. Jan. – First Bloody Marie in my lifetime. Like it.

Nationaler Notstand à la belge

or as the BBC titles: Beer-loving Belgians could see taps run dry.

Panic is not hitting Belgium yet but this crisis has more potential than the months long absence of a government.

Oh, wait, it turns out that only Stella Artois* and Leffe are concerned – 2 out of a zillion Belgian beers. This means tonight I will have to have a Duvel, or an Orval, or a Kwak, or a Chimey, or or or… Life is hard.

* Stella Artois is brewed with sweet corn… By German standards, that is NOT beer!