Over REM in de Winston, the FUCK-THA-SYSTEM kids en de midlife-crisis van Dr Dre.
Hiya kids, Quote of the week: "I was not looking for my dreams to interpret my life, but rather for my life to interpret my dreams." Susan Sontag awww, sorry to do a runner on you guys, but I've just spent the last 2 weeks skiing in Bulgaria. I had planned to send my mailouts as usual, from the eastern block, but I'm afraid that it was more a case of 'should, woulda, coulda'. Hope you didn't miss me too much. Trust me to be out of the country when the band memebers of REM choose to visit Winston! IT'S TRUE! The boyz were gigging at the Ahoy in Rotterdam a couple of weeks back, and whilst Michael Stipe WASN'T a Winston guest the drummer and bassist enjoyed Winston sooooo much that we had to kick them out after closing time. Classy! The REMers were treated with the same friendly welcome we extend to all guests - as they entered the club they did their best to score a free entry: "We're in the band of REM" they said. "Congratulations, that'll be EUR5" replied our kassa lady without hesitation. The boys paid happily without hesitation. Good to see that SOME people are not losing their religion... or their manners, at least. I don't know how many of you ski, (hell, I was hardly able to do it just weeks ago) but for those of you who do cut a fine form on the piste, I can highly recommend Bansko in Bulgaria. The lifts and hire equipment are all top notch. The ski-runs are varied and well looked after. The town is charmingly olde worlde. The locals are genuinely friendly. The apres ski is lively and CHHHHEEEAP (Dinner for 2 won't set you back more than EUR25)! Take a look at http://www.bulgariaski.com/bansko/index.shtml or http://www.e-e-t.nl. My advice is to visit BEFORE Bulgaria takes on the Euro in 2008. A month or 2 ago I told you about kewl NY band, The Bravery. I've since discoverd that their lead singer used to wear dreads and sing in a ska band called "Skabba The Hutt". Not sure if that makes them more, or LESS kewl.You decide. Dr Dre turns 40 this Thursday. BBC Radio station 1Xtra has arranged a special day of programming to celebrate the hip hop star's bday, but it seems that Dre and Aftermath Records are not so keen on the idea of hitting the big 4-oh, so 1Xtra bosses had to send this email out to presenters: "Aftermath Records in the States are VERY unhappy with us drawing attention to the fact that Dr Dre is going to be 40 years old - so tone down the mentions of him turning 40. Just say it's his birthday so we're going to celebrate with Dre Day." I suppose that mentioning anything about a "Middle Age Crisis" would also be a bad idea? DJ Freestone, the man who's brought you Advanced Party (at the Melkweg and Amuse) and Populisme (at Winny) will be celebrating his birthday the Thurs 17 at Winston. Due to legal restrictions I am not permitted to mention his age, but I AM permitted to tell you that he's much younger than the decrepit Dr Dre and that this POPULISME party will be one to remember. My pals at popbitch.com report that Green Day singer Billy Jo Armstrong is now a proud father. His son's middle name is Danger. ohhhh... that is just sooo krazy and wild that I am falling asleep with excitement. zzzzzz. And speaking of intense boredom... Is staying-in the new going-out? A recent survey in Brittain reveals that only 13% of people go out on Saturday evening, with 41% of Brits remaining at home every single night of the week. But surely the same trend couldn't be happening here in Amsterdam?? I can't discuss this cause it's getting late and I have to be at home (all week). And if people ARE going out less in A'dam, perhaps that's because all the squats and alternative-lifestyle people have been kicked out of the city? I'll tell you what - if I never see another 'trendy' lounge-cocktail-bar before I die, I will die happy! That's why I'm delighted that the FUCK-THA-SYSTEM kids from Radio Mortale do a live music night with us at Winny once a month. This Fri 18th there are 3 great bands to sample: The Heights + Pfaff + Skysonics. My challenge to you is this: Fight the statistics; don't stay at home on the weekend! (G'won, I dare ya) And speaking of good reasons to get out of the house, there is finally an ice-skating rink on the Dam square. I guess ID&T don't plan to throw any big party's in the city centre right at the moment. I never see many people skating there though... perhaps because the average temperature over the last few weeks has been about 10C. I blame global warming, and don't say Ididn't warn you. As Bulgaria isn't yet part of the European Union, perhaps it's still not affected by global warming? In the 2 weeks we visited it snowed almost 2m. That's more snow fall than I've seen in my entire outback-desert-girl-Aussie life. Are ex-communist countries exempt from global warming? That would seem fair I think. The Bulgarians do contribute to global warming by chain-smoking non-filter ciggies. Even on the pure pistes! ugh. Since Jan this year they have a rule that every bar/restaurant/venue must be 50% non-smoking. So all of the business ownes dutifully put out non-smoking signs in case the authorities make a visit. Meanwhile, the rule means shit. People in this untilecently communist country are so used to meaningless rules, and so used to smoking as if it's an olympic sport OR the only pleasure they have in their lives, that it becomes comical. I'm bringing this up because the same thing will be happening here soon and we should all think about it. Banning smoking altogether is foolish and impractical. Not allowing smoking in places where food is served seems smart to me. Accepting that many people who help the economy and energy of the city by staying out late and drinking and possibly smoking seems like a good reason to encourage better ventilation systems or maybe smoking rooms. In Bulgaria, me 'n DJ Polack sat upstairs in the 'Non-Smoking' section not really bothered by people lighting up the odd fag. UNTIL a Russian couple sat right beside us and chain smoked the whole way through our main course. They were also oblivious to the fact that we were fanning their smoke away with a menu. We asked the waiter if this was really a non-smoking section. "Yes" he said, "But just one cigarette...." Yes... one after the other. (geez, that was quite a rant, wasn't it!) Meanwhile... there's a flock of geese that live wild near my house, just between Flevopark and the Praxis. They have little baby chicks already!!! InFebruary!!! I mean, I know it's been a mild winter, but REALLY... isn't it time that we taught geese about the benefits of contraception? ***NON-WINSTON TIP VAN DE WEEK*** This weekend I visited Gallery Montevideo.It's a strange thing, video art... hardly the kind of thing you'd buy to feature in your house. Still, it's well worth a look The latest exhibition is called Wonderwall and has NOTHING to do with Oasis but more to do with wonderful walls. The building itself is a wonder. Montevideo is at Keizersgracht 264 www.montevideo.nl Still here??? Really... you're still HERE after I forsaked you for 3 whole weeks??? I LOVE your tenacious, needy spirit! I love the fact that I have a place in your Top 10 most interesting emails of the week. I even love those of you who delete this mail straight away without ever bothering to Unsubscribe. (You people obviously haven't read this far). You will all be rewarded for your faithfulness... And the next time that you meet someone from Bulgaria, please remember that 'Thank You' in Bulgarian is 'BoggaDARiah'