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2016-17 Nestputzer VI-VII

Nestpuzzer 1,2 comedy program

2015 - 2016 Nestputzer IV-V

2014-15 Nestputzer Blog II, III

2012-14 Nestputzer Blog I

2013/14 Nestputzer

ebook: >>http://issuu.com


2010 Laufbuch (on-line book)

2009 Satironien Nimrod-

Verlag Zürich

2004 noir Nimrod-Verlag

2000 geistläuferseele

Nimrod-Verlag Zürich

1976 Nabokov's Bodies

PhD dissertation University

of Zürich








NESTPUTZER TEXTBLOG >> www.rweiler.ch

"Nestpuzzer" ist der provisorische Titel meiner Comedy-Programme (2017/18)

 #QSchweiz ©rweiler


Das dritte Lebensalter

Nein, das nenne ich nicht Rente oder Pensionierung. Letzteres schon gar nicht, beim Tippen vertippt sich Gregor immer wieder und setzt das I vor das S. Das dritte Lebensalter tönt distinguierter, ist nach dem Baby und Teenager, dann Erwachsensein das Dritte im Bunde. Die Gerontologie definiert auch noch ein viertes Lebensalter, aber das würde hier zu weit führen... Die Hände in den Schoss legen, nur noch fern sehen bringt nicht die erhoffte Fernsicht. Ausnahmen rackern in ihrem Beruf weiter bis über die siebzig hinaus, ein uns bekannter Verleger gar bis achtzig!                                                                              Vor allem Politiker wollen und wollen nicht aufhören. Mein Gott, ihre Enkel kennen sie kaum. Mit dem neuen Lebensabschnitt einhergehend ist eine Vernachlässigung des Äusseren. Bei Glatze entfallen die Haarschneidekosten.  Man trägt dann einfach meistens Jeans und ganz viele dazu diese Freizeit- oder Sportjoppen. Bart rasieren und Nasenhaare trimmen ist Nebensache, der Schnauz spriesst ungepflegt, Bauchansatz ist egal. Noch immer geht der rüstige Mittsechziger so schnell, dass ihm auf der Säntisroute niemand folgen kann. Ein E-Bike gehört zwingend dazu, damit kann man es den Jüngeren, die ohne Motor unterwegs sind, zeigen, ihnen um die Ohren sausen! Auch Doppelrentnerpaare pflegen die Sparsucht. Sie fahren mit ihrem GA mit dem ersten Zug um 5.33 los und erzählen stolz, fast hätten sie die ganze Schweiz umrundet und seien mit dem letzten Zug wieder zu Hause eingetroffen. Und dann gibt’s jene, die immer zu den Stosszeiten unterwegs sind, aus alter Gewohnheit von früher. Und überhaupt reisen, reisen, nur noch reisen: Kreuzfahrt, Trekking, Safari, Städtetrips, Weltreisen, Weinreisen, Kulturhubern, Wanderferien, Velotouren, Sprachaufenthalte, Kinder auf anderen Erteilen besuchen, Heli-skiing in Colorado, Ueberwintern in Marakesch, ein Haus in Spanien und eins im Tessin, die Schweiz von Nord bis Süd, von Ost bis West auswendig lernen, wandern als Obsession, daselbst auch noch Ski fahren, Wellnessen und der Gastronomie pflegen. Zufrieden sein, anderen auch etwas gönnen? I wo, jammern und andere beneiden, die noch mehr herumdüsen, noch teurere Ferien machen, überhaupt nie zu Hause sind.




The Wonders of Baroque Music


Being an amateur in musical matters, I have however developed a sense of quality that is my own and not influenced by famous names and stars in the business.   There is a canon of works played again and again. In classical music I have always also listened to the lesser known composers. My classical initiation were works by Tchaikovski and Reger. Then followed the English Elizabethian music which has the fabulous works by Dowland, Thomas Tallis and William Byrd. Then Henry Purcell and Händel to follow. What great works of festive and royal character! For a whole year I listened to little else but Mozart. Afterwards Beethoven, Liszt and Brahms. Recently I discovered a list of „(Great) Violin music before Mozart“ which has about a hundred names, so many of them Italian and spanning the time of 200 years. It can be found on the Internet. So I started to listen to the sometimes fantastic works of this list. I’ll give you the first part of it:

dowland 1563 piccinini 1566 monteverdi 1567 cima 1570 fontana 1571 praetorius 1571 frescobaldi 1583 schutz 1585 castello 1590 marini 1594 buonamente 1595 uccellini 1603 bertali 1605 cazzati 1616 rosenmuller 1619 schmelzer 1620?    Isabella Leonarda 1620 locke 1621 legrenzi 1626 mealli 1630 vitali 1632 lully 1632 buxtehude 1637 myslivecek 1737 viviani 1638 stradella 1639 hacquart 1640      biber 1644                                                                                                                               HIF Biber (Hermann Ignaz Franz Biber): his works alone blow your mind! And there is one woman among them! Outstanding is en epithet you can attribute to most of their works!! It may suffice to just name a few I liked even more than others: Monteverdi, Schmelzer (his ciacconna in A major, lately discovered, perhaps the finest melancholic tune I have ever heard), Marin Marais, Scarlatti, Albinoni in my youth, Vivaldi (not the „Four Seasons“, there are some lesser known but vastly better compositions by the Italian), Rameau, Carlo Farini (who is not even on this list, but his works are magnificent!), CW Gluck and CPE Bach who somehow has a very special way of composing rather modern masterpieces.





I confess I am an enthusiast


 No big deal, not a grand confession this! I firmly believe that finding

 special people, great works of art and wonderful music interesting

 makes life easier!

 Making compliments to the people and artists involved (if still alive) is not

 despicable, but a human trait that makes or would make our humdrum

 existence more bearable, if more people did this! The opposite is the

 bitter cynical critic who puts his own achievements or an ideal that no

 one can reach right up on top of the shelf so that nobody can reach it.

 Recently I enthuse about my grandchildren, finding them the cutest

 and funniest little kids I ever saw. When Obama was elected and also

 later on many of us were enthusiastic and regardless of the outcome

 of his presidency his rhetoric is still something that I can rave about.

 As a boy I was passionate about nature, animals and soccer. As a

 teenager I adored rock and pop idols and filmstars. When I studied

 I became a Nabokov freak, later a Kafka fan. I started listening to

 Mozart (for a whole year and almost exclusively), Beethoven and

 Brahms, as well as Reger and Tschaikovsky followed. A film about

 Schubert is ready to be watched again as soon as there is enough time.

 In literature, music and film I became a great amateur, the list

 of authors I studied is endless, many became like old acquaintances

 to me. At one time even opera caught my fancy. Female opera stars

 arias I could listen to no end: Sophie von Otter, Tiri Te Kanawa,

 Cecilia Bartoli, Renée Fleming etc. Buying their records became an

 obsession. One of the late great pop singers who caught my fancy is

 Lana del Rey. She is vastly talented and such a professional performer.

 But then it’s back again to my beloved baroque music and the Italians:

 Monteverdi, Biber, Porpora, Vivaldi—life is too short to enjoy all their

 wonderful creations and there are so many other works. William Boyce,

 Henry Purcell, William Byrd and John Dowland—a garden of musical

 delights. I find myself sometimes clapping my hands wildly until they

 ache at the end of a concert when some friend plays.

 I am not too discriminate when I like a performance on facebook,

 but it’s also nice to be liked for a quip, an ironical or bitter comment,

 a game of words. Which is by the way what blogs are about.


 30 October 2016



Facebook despite all its snags


Obviously Facebook is here to stay, it has grown to incredible popularity. The pros and cons lists are long. The generation gap between the younger and older gener-ations is clear: Whereas initially the youngsters were into it, today it is increasingly the older generation of users that makes extended use of the Facebook service.In the early days Facebook was free of advertising, nowadays this is different. Firms and businesses have discovered the possibility to spam users. Gamers are targeted most efficiently, I was temporarily lured to play „Candy Crush Saga“. Some of Fb is dead easy, but the administration of your personal rights and pre- ferences is highly complex. Frankly hilarious this ad:

 Facebook is good at ferreting out what you are interested in. Sometimes it comes up with a facebook entry that you have forgotten after one or several years. Slightly creepy: Is there really someone employed to nose through your old entries and suggest a memory that you’d perhaps like to share once more with your buddies on Fb. Much rather a machine that finds out something that had more likes than other posts.                                                                                                       One of the great tools is the app that allows you to create groups on it. Although not being a group person, I created several ones: One against the use of leaf- blowers, one to modernize German spelling and my favourite: „Smart without a smart phone“. Here I am founder and only member and president (emoji with tears)! I am also an active member of the group Franz Liszt. My favourite activities on Fb are commenting posts from other people, kidding, expressing irony and signing petitions and political campaigning on the social media. Facebook is smart enough for me, thank you. It has a very complex ensemble of user facilities. Its chat function has been developed and allows you to chat at your heart’s content, including emojis, gifs and whatever else you may want to communicate.         Clearly negative: Once you have entered some content, it cannot be deleted and your data is stored for years and exploited for personal data which you perhaps would not want to be made public. I don’t like this flash: „Better stay indoors. Rain has been predicted for your area.“ There are worse things than a bit of drizzle on your head: the constant shower of Facebook advertising. Should I repeat my old joke here: I am not Facebook, I am rather a „Bookface“, my reading time is mostly more extended than my use of social media. And yes, I am using two other internet media: Twitter (not as often as in the past) and increasingly Youtube.





Astrology: sham or true hints?


I am also writing this for a reader later in this century provided that this

unprinted text is somehow stored and made available to people living

when I am no longer around. This used to be done via books which

media has a limited lifespan, but digital material probably even more so.

Astrology would perhaps know how things develop, but then no. As an

ardent atheist I am not going to believe in astrological predictions (neither

in weather forecasts, too often proved wrong despite the latest technology).

In my younger years I met a fortuneteller somewhere in France who read

in my hand something that (almost inevitably) has become reality; „You

will  live in another family in the future“. I smiled, wondered, and took my

wife and children by their hand and continued a long story that came

however to an end a long time ago. But today I think that the probabiliy

of this prediction is very big indeed for most people, at least the majority.

I had my horoscope made decades ago—and was stunned! Most of it

sounded absolutely plausible, so much so that I had to lock it away for

years, because it also contained some frightening prospects. The graphic

chart of my birth horoscope has planets only on the left side, which is

mostly true for my political outlook as well.

Looking at it today objectively I am still thrilled by certain passages and

parallels in my actual life. True: „Great sensiblity, creativity, emotional

outlook, helper’s syndrome“. My former profession (teacher, psychologist,

social worker) and my interest in languages and literature were rightly

found out. False: Not much!

Once I had a „tree horoscope“ done—an astrologer (a woman) attributed

different deciduous and other trees to the people who were present:

She suggested I am a chestnut tree—which to me sounds perfectly right

I adore this tree from southern climates, eat chestnuts and vermicelles

whenever I can.

A couple of weeks ago I asked for a horoscope on-line and got into the

fangs of a highly efficient American astrology business. The frontman’s

name is Arnold. He sent me a year’s predictions from then on, very general

trends that are never wrong and hardly ever right. The first excitement

abated and today I am not checking every day whether there is a prediction

that really happens in my life. The other thing is that Arnold has been

spamming me ever since and every day, trying to sell me esoteric knickknack

or having my daily horoscope explained to me by his fellow astrologers

which services of course I refused steadfastly if not heroically. Their help

attitude is truly not what I need in my life which demands constantly difficult

decisions so that any third opinion (after my wife’s and my own plans) could

only be confusing or misleading, but at any rate complicating life.





Hasenberg Ryokan


This may sound incredible: Zürich has a Japanese Ryokan hotel out

in the countryside, 20km from the city: a splendid lair for people

who enjoy the special relaxed and exotic Japanese way of living.

When you get there you have found a perfect spot for unwinding

and enjoying an authentic experience: Japanese lifestyle in the

Swiss hills overlooking the Alps in the distance! The view from

the terraces and balconies is breathtaking.

Somebody mentioned that this Ryokan’s services saves you a trip

to Japan. You will find he best of both worlds: Swiss and Japanese

highlights. Culinary standards are top-notch with Japanese Kaiseki

chefs doing things abroad just as well as at home. But there are

also sushi and sashimi treats. On Wednesday evenings there is

sushi à discretion. And all this at reasonable prices.

Not only gastronomy is served on a high level, you can spend the

night(s) there in absolute comfort and quiet suroundings: hills and

forests and nature’s wonders are in walking distance.

Japanese dining on the hills: a fancy delight that is vastly different

from sushi restaurants in town: kaiseki restaurant, sushi bar and

latest addition: Iriri grill-station. and kobe beef. Spending the night

in a Japanese-style Ryokan guest house is indeed a unique experience

that is not available anywhere else in Europe.


rw, 11.10.2016



Que tal?


Ja die immer wiederkehrende Frage nach dem Befinden hat schon ihre Berechtigung. How are you? Just fine—ist die obligatorische Antwort der Amerikaner. Können sie dies heute im Vorfeld der Wahlen 2016 immer noch finden und sagen, wo die Wahl eigentlich keine mehr ist? Bei Clinton haben wir einen langen Vorlauf und etwas leichtsinniges eMail-Handlung,  von Trump wurden die USA aber ganz eigentlich überrumpelt. Als Mysoginist, Frauen-belästiger, Steuerhinterzieher, potentieller Mauerbauer gegen Mexico, Republikaner und Putin-Versteher ist der arrogant- widerliche grossmaulige Repräsentant des amerikanischen Systems ganz einfach nicht wählbar, sondern gehört abgestraft mit einem höchst katastrophalen Wahlergebnis. Und Clinton? Mit dem dubiosen ex-Präsidenten noch immer verheiratet, zeigt sie für die Welt somit Grösse, aber doch fast übermenschliche Toleranz. Diese Ehe hat sie vielleicht als Kalkül oder Wahlstrategie aufrecht erhalten, aber das ist natürlich Privatsache. Als Aussenministerin unter Obama hat sie wohl einige der aussenpolitischen Fehlentscheide in seiner Amtszeit zu verantworten, acht Jahre Interventionismus an falschen Orten, Gewährenlassen des IS und Nichtstun im Kampf gegen Assad, Drohnenangriffe, Rückfall in den kalten Krieg, Handelskrieg gegen Europa, Fortführung der Ausbeutungspolitik in der ganzen Welt.

Wahlen sind immer auch ein Intelligenztest, wo aber keine Wahlmöglichkeit besteht, wird es ganz schwierig. Das kleinere Uebel zu wählen frustriert extrem.

Könnte man Obama wiederwählen, würde man das wollen? Einer der wohl brilliantesten Redner der letzten fünfzig Jahre hat es aber verpasst, in einigen Bereichen Stärke zu zeigen wo das dringend nötig gewesen wäre: In den Menschenrechtsfragen in China/Tibet, Syrien und Saudi Arabien und in der schlimmen polizeilichen Gewalt gegen Schwarze im Land, das wohl sehr lange keinen schwarzen Präsidenten mehr haben wird. Und Clinton wird strahlende Quotenfrau, was aber auch nicht nur Jubel auslösen wird und sie wird Amerikas Probleme vor sich herschieben wie gehabt.





A literary soliloquy


Being an avid reader all my life it seems apt to try and find one’s bearings in the mass of texts one has read, studied or sometimes devoured during the decades of childhood, youth and adult life. Nowadays there is a trend towards illiteracy, film and tv have taken the place that literature once had. For some in-crowd people       it has become unthinkable to collect books and therefore they are virtually banished from the living room.  OK, not many people like to actually live in a library, as some antiquarians do in their shops (Borges worked in a library and lived in an imaginary library). Mass production of literature nowadays leaves us with a quality   and quantity problem. Whereas in the old days there was a canon of works to be studied and read, this is by no means so today. How can one get an overview in an endless ocean of texts? In our busy student days the learned professors of literary history did this with amazing zest and one imagined them living a life like a monk. This morning I dreamed one could classify all literature by the kind of heroes that it presents. Originally from Homer via Beowulf and Don Quijote down to James Bond it was some kind of fighter-hero—and of course only men were the hub of fiction. This was so until about 1800 when some women writers found a way to express themselves. Virginia Woolfe was however not taken seriously for a long time even in the 20th century. Love stories and dramas make up most prose. Don Juan type heroes dominated a large stretch of time. Poe gave us the detective hero in the 19th century witha strong following, and this has become nearly senile productivity today. I think I would have stopped reading if not for the invention and reproduction of anti-heroes. (For me best in Wilhelm Genazinos novels). The ironic distancing of novel figures is refreshing, funny, realistically closer to modern man and woman. Heroines, yes there are a few. The subject is not, however, a mother’s life, which is taken for granted and therefore lacking in interest? In religious scripture Jesus, Mohamed, Buddha and others become undoubtedly obvious heroes. A lof of authors saw themselves as the heroes in their writing careers (Goethe, Stendhal, Joyce, Nabokov, Arno Schmidt and others). They created works of art which turned their readers into heroic consumers of fiction. Let me add here two authors who are perhaps going into new directions. Thomas Glavinic, who has created the Jonas figure which has nearly achieved cult status: a genial   male hero who is hyper-intelligent, but also a bit of an anti hero and he can come to grips with the most difficult problems in his life and be a great lover. And there is Jonathan Franzen who amazingly created „Pips“ (Purity, 2015), an anti-heroine in quest of her father who somehow got lost in her childhood and can only be found by heroic action and Andreas, a highly intelligent, but unlikely super-hero from EasternGermany, the founder of a sect and a maniac who abuses himself and girls and finally seduces Pip as well.





Fruit and Veggies


Being mostly a vegetarian it’s obvious that my focus when it comes to food

is on the healthier and biotic products that are not a meat-substitute, but a

basis for great tasty meals and in-between snacks. In my childhood my mum

took me to the garden plot where we toiled whole afternoons and grew some

great stuff that I ate masses of already then: cabbage prepared in my mum’s

way: mashed and tasty. On my grandfather’s farm I  spent hours sitting on

fruit trees and eating as much as necessary. In front of our house there were

three pear trees—even today I eat a pear or several pears a day—and we had

a grapevine that actually was on our neighbour’s land, but one side was

siding our premises. So a large quantity of those small grapes were my prey.

Later I ate kilos of grapes all by myself in an afternoon. Peas, leak, cabbage,

potatoes—promises for great meals. This year I was looking in vain for sweet

peas in Zürich and so decided to grow my own next year.

The slogan „eat five portions of fruit and vegetables to stay healthy“ sounds

like a joke to some people. The less well-to-do say they cannot even afford

biotic products. This would not be so, if they avoided meat in their menus.

This morning I have just made a plum pie (also apricot or rhubarb are fine).

There is no tastier or more delicious food! Pizzas also homemade and as biotic

as possible are better than any I have tasted in my life! Natura sacra is the

name of a biotic wine I discovered the other day, but it describes the expression

of gratitude that one feels if one thinks of such great plants like the melon,

the courgette, the pumpkin, the zucchini, gherkins, carrots of different colours,

onion and garlic, old-time tomatoes, asparagus, celery, turnips, sweetcorn,

beans, red, green and yellow peppers, broccoli, aubergines and artichokes to

mention only the most important veggies—the list of great fruit is equally long.

Home-grown products would be best—but who can afford to have a garden

and the time to look after it—most people wouldn’t even want to.


18 September 2016



Genazinos neuer Streich

Niemand spricht über uns ausser wir, Hanser, 2016

 Schon der Titel ist ein kleines Rätsel. Es geht ja hier nicht um Autobiografie, aber der mit allen Wassern gewaschene Erzähler trickst aus alter Gewohnheit und es gelingt ihm erneut ein kleines Wunder. Der neuste Anti-Held in der langen Reihe von Scheiterern und Versagern, die Genazinos Romane bestreiten, erhält hier eine Zugabe: ein schlecht (oder gut?) alternder Zeitgenosse, der Schauspieler werden wollte und dann zuletzt beim Radio Sprecher und an Modeschauen Moderator wurde, hat wie eine ganze Reihe von früheren Genazino-Figuren ein Frauen-Problem, vielleicht weil er zu genau hinguckt, sich zu oft verguckt, das Zusammenleben mit der „anderen Spezies“ auf seine eigene Art definiert und seine verwelkende Sexualität offen diskutiert. Nicht nur Frauen, die in Betrieben arbeiten, welken dahin in seiner Optik, für ihn ist die ganze Existenz ein Dahinwelken und auf keinen Fall ein aktives Schaffen und Wirken. Er bezeichnet sich als „beschäftigungslos, nicht arbeitslos“, solidarisiert sich in Gedanken mit nicht Beschäftigten und Obdachlosen, aber eben dann meist auch mit Frauen. Als Frauenerklärer hat es Genazino zu höchster Meisterschaft gebracht, da dies aber gezwungenermassen aus sturer Männersicht geschieht, ist auch hier das Scheitern doch vorgeplant.

Genazino hat in seiner Abhandlung Über das Komische: der aussengeleitete Humor (1998) für sich eine Komiktheorie entwickelt, die er dann in seinen Romanen konsequent anwendet und weiterentwickelt:

„Das Komische ist die nicht entdeckte, aber stets auf einen Entdecker wartende Lächerlichkeit, an der der Entdecker selbst teilhat. Die innere Tätigkeit, die zu solchen Entdeckungen führt, darf äussere Realität verdrehen und umdichten, ohne dass der Autor dieser Veränderung je fürchten müsste, seine Weltverunstaltung rechtfertigen oder gar verantworten zu müssen. Wer Komik empfindet, hat keine andere, bessere (weil moralischere) Wahrheit zur Hand (wie der Humorist und der Satiriker), sondern er belässt es dabei, die vorhandene Welt privat zu deformieren. Komik will nirgendwo „eingreifen“. Wer Komik schätzt, ist oft auch ein geheimer Kompagnon versteckter Mängel und Fehler, die die komische Tätigkeit erst in Gang bringen.“

Was auch als „Komik der Beiläufigkeit“ bezeichnet wurde, weist weit über krude Humoristerei hinaus. Es ist ein Gefühl, das in dieser Form nicht Massen zugänglich ist (also nicht für Satire-Shows taugt), sondern etwas sehr Privates, das die Lesenden in diese höheren (oder tieferen) Sphären der Komik führt.






Only Water


The commonplace lifegiver has always existed in different places on the earth in unequal quantities and nowadays also water qualities vary. It may be hip to consume designer waters, but people in many areas in Africa have more elementary problems to solve: the scarcity of supplies, the frequency of draught periods, the pollution of certain waters. Here tap water is of equally good quality as mineral (soda) water and this too is being sold in expensive Switzerland. The waiter’s question: „with or without gas?“ has become a standard routine query. Women generally prefer without, men with gas, at least in my experience.

Water consumption per capita is highest in the United States and lowest in the deserts of the world, as we all know. The originally Swiss multinational Nestlé has come up with the sick idea of selling water to the poorest at an unaffordable price for them, I believe in Africa and South America. In 2013 their CEO denied the right of every human to get enough drinking water. Protests were massive. Before it was milk powder and proxies for breast feeding liquid that was and still is a million seller item for them. Helvetas on the other hand have traditionally been building wells and springs in Nepal and Africa. This seems to me to be one of the most advisable types of care work with a direct positive effect on local communities.

We are having one of those wet spring and summer seasons with abundant showers which is annoying for holiday makers, tourists and farmers alike. Only oldsters remember the summer of 1976 with so much sunshine and not enough rain, so that the whole country was not green any more, but brown! I remember rivers and brooks in my childhood with abundant fish in them, but this is quite gone now. Fish have become rare and many kinds could be extinct in a not too far distant future.





 Serendipity—in the broadest sense


„The fortuitous finding of something one was not looking for“ is a working definition of serendipity. Please google the term and find the Wikipedia definitions, I am not quoting these here. The linguistic history of the term already reads like a fairytale, also to be found—you know where. The first occurrence of the word was indeed a case of serendipity. The German, but not the English Wikipedia gives a long list of findings and „inventions“: the discovery of America (instead of India), the discovery of Röntgen rays, peniciline and Viagra (!). Also the Velcro fastener, teflon, Post-it, linoleum, silicone, the teabag, nylon stockings or LSD were serendipitous findings. Not to forget the „hum of the universe“. This could be generalized to the extent that all human research or discoveries were fortuitous or even all human activity, a search for pleasure, happiness, work, a partner, business, learning  and wealth doesn’t get you what were looking for, but something else. So actually all human activity does not find the gaol one was hoping to reach/achieve, but is a provisional result and not the end in itself. Yes and even in religions God is perhaps not what one was looking for, but a serendipitous find among the thousands of gods mankind has invented. But what are women and men really looking for? Far too many people mention money. This is the most serendipitous element one can strive for. Its countervalue does not give you what you were really looking for: artistic feeling, beauty, fitness, friendship, happiness, health, knowledge, leasure, love or wisdom—these are things money can’t buy and people can’t find wilfully, but they do find other things instead...
It seems apt to see in the concept of serendipity a more general way of being, embracing the idea that all search is vain anyway and few if any goals are really worth attaining. But a fatalistic acceptance of the things one finds in life may indeed be more helpful than despair about not finding what one craves.





Flirt Seminar


Verena Abgottspon-Sommerhalder, in her late thirties, took to organising flirt seminars for those who are shy or those who have not used the technique of flirting for a long time and would like to get the feeling back or use flirt techniques better. On Wednesdays usually half a dozen to a dozen participants convened in a room that was used for gymnastics before and still had a bit of that odour, you know what I mean. Verena arranges the proselytes of flirting in a circle or half circle and chooses one of the more attractive men to demonstrate how she would go about to wrap him around her little finger. Looking into his eyes, smiling ingratiatingly and touching the guy’s shirt front she manages at least a tiny response. She then had the participants try this in pairs, stepping in herself if one of the guys had no female partner. She had misgivings about flirting with same sex targets, although she pretended that the rules were exactly the same there. Verena distributed a sheet with the „25 flirt signals“,  philosophized on the „art of making compliments“ and commented on the techniques when trying them out. She asked the men and women about their experiences when „doing field work“, how their exercises or „homework“ as she sometimes called it, came off. People found it difficult to talk about their mimetic exertions and body language efforts. Nevertheless there were sometimes bright moments when a guy or gal reported what a fantastic response they got from their addressees. There is the odd case where the flirter and the beflirted fall in love or even get married. But more often than not it was love’s labours lost.







Who says we are not supposed to hate this or that? Of course love is the nobler feeling, but a world full of hypocrites, murderers or greedy pigs is hateful and the gentler souls feel isolated and lost in this world. Starting with the negative, I could fill the hole entry today with just names of people I find awful, but these here deserve to top the list: Hitler, Stalin, Pol Pot, Milosevic, Karadjic, Sadam Hussein, Mugabe, Muamar Gadafi, Assad, Kim Yong-Un, Iranian Ayatollas, Saudi kings, Erdogan, etc. etc. All these people are  guilty of murdering innocent people by thousands or millions. May they rot in hell.

But on the other hand I am a great „liker“: a bit indiscriminately I like musicians’ works, friends’ productions (Urs Faes: Sommer in Brandenburg), my wife’s poetry, Inke Lerch’s pottery. Lauding someone’s efforts is to me a sign of encouragement  to do more of the same or improve things. There is  a free magazine in Zürich called „Like Mag“! One finds in it funny, original and likeable publishing stunts from the internet. Back on facebook I follow and like a Swiss musician of long standing and his great artistic facebook work: Erich Nussbaum.

And on youtube I like(d) the following amazing contemporary items: Anohni, aka Antony and the Johnsons, Daughter, Lana del Rey, Led Zeppelin, Rolf Lislevand, Duo Praxedis, Paul Taylor Orchestra, Odesza, The Lumineers: Cleopatra, The School of Life (practical philosophy) etc.

By the way, I don’t like the American teen figure of speech „I was like...“ but I wouldn’t say I hate it.





 Run, write


This title is the translation of a book title by Swiss writer Denis de Roulet (Courir, écrire, Minizoé, 1999). He is a runner of marathons in Paris, Berlin and New York, the three big long-distance events in the world, whereas being a Suisse romand he could also have run the Geneva, Lausanne or Zürich marathons. I have never understood why people have to travel so far to participate in a long-distance competition. I did the couple of marathons and a number of half marathons just around the corner where I live.

But of course it’s a prestige thing to do the big city runs. London looked tempting at a certain time when I was younger, but I decided also against that. Running and writing have a lot in common, it takes stamina to do both, there is a beginning and an end, both are head things. Plus one has to learn a few things before one gets there, one of them being the fact that writing/running are lonely activities.

The Japanese writer H. Murakami in What I talk about when I talk about running (2009) has reached great philosophic depth talking about his running and writing novels, which he also found to have quite a few correspondences. I like this statement: "Being active every day makes it easier to hear that inner voice.“ He also mused about the inevitabilily of pain when running: „Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional. Say you’re running and you think, ‘Man, this hurts, I can’t take it anymore’. The ‘hurt’ part is an unavoidable reality, but whether or not you can stand anymore is up to the runner himself.” Oh, by the way, when I was younger, my own writing prepared itself in a nutshell while I was running and coming home panting I sat down to write down the thoughts that were inspired by the godess of runners (Victory). „Laufbuch“ I called my reflections on my running activities which is published online and can be ordered @ www.erwe-verlag.ch





Hi bye!                                                                                                         „You say hello, and I say good-bye! (Beatles)


Two young people arriving from Abu Dhabi in Zürich were separated by the aisle in the plane, but couldn’t help being fascinated by the other across it. She: Claire (25) a French business woman who is wildly successful in the wine business. Cornflowerblue eyes, auburn hair, a sportswoman. He: Samuel (37), a Swiss communications specialist for a firm in the oil business. He is rather unsuccessful in life, had failed his exams in humanities and then (perhaps too late) changed to something more materialistic. At that moment he is in a finishing relationship with Jan.

They are waiting for their bags to arrive at the baggage reclaim. Looking into each others’ eyes they miss taking their baggage from the conveyor several times and are the last to make their way towards customs. Both their baggages are checked (expensive jewelry in her, sex toys in his baggage). They then move to the „Bye bye bar“ and start talking. As he knows Zürich very well, he suggests going to a hideaway hotel on the lake.

But before leaving they both drink too much and are tipsy. Then Samuel is getting a call on his phone with Jan asking where he was and when he would be home. Sam said he was still in Dubai and would be home only in a couple of days. Jan worried about his drunkenness in an Arab country and told him repeatedly to be careful. He told him not to worry.

Claire and Sam then took a taxi to the lakeside Swan hotel and got a nice room with a splendid view from the balcony facing the lake. They then downed a bottle of very expensive and heady French wine that Claire recommended and then collapsed in bed. Next morning neither of them remembered much of the first evening and night spent together. At breakfast who comes in but Jan with another man, smiling sheepishly. Sam presented rather awkwardly: This is my brother Jan, and here is Claire, my new flame!





Die Verbernerisierung von SRF („äss—ärr—äff“)


Es gab vor kurzem diese Volksabstimmung wegen Service public, neben Post und SBB war auch SRF in der Kritik. Ich glaube aber niemandem ist bei letzterem Service klar geworden, worin das Unbehagen mit SRF liegen könnte. Es ist die schleichende Vereinnahmung von SRF durch Bern, die sich schon seit Jahr(zehnt)en abzeichnet. Ich muss aber gestehen, dass ich ganz vieles nicht mehr mitbekomme, was SRF so dahinwurstelt. Neulich aber sah ich eine Sendung des „Kassensturzes“, weil das Gerät eben schon lief und ich gerade nichts anderes  zu tun hatte. Die Moderatorin: Bernerin, ohne den Schimmer von Charisma, der bei TV-Sprecherinnen einfach da sein muss: nein, ein abgelöschtes Gesicht. Und eben dieser Akzent, gäng, wösch, giu u.a. Aber nicht nur die Sprache, auch thematisch war fast alles schief. Es ging um die von Greenpeace publizierte Studie zur Vergiftung von Schweizer Erdbeeren. Zuerst hiess es von besagter Dame, es seien 10%, dann schliesslich „nur“ noch 6% der Erdbeeren stark mit Gift versprüht, während im  Fernsehprogram noch von 20% die Rede war. Ja was denn nun? Einem Greenpeace-Sprecher wurden nur  doofe Fragen gestellt: „Findet teer need, dass teer do e chli es grosses Gschtörm mached wegen es bitzeli Gift spritze?“ Nicht Konsumentenschutz schien das Thema, sondern vorauseilende Inschutznahme der ach so armen Giftspritzer. Drei Proben (alle bio) waren unbedenklich, etwa ein Dutzend dann aber eben nicht. Beim herrschenden Wetter reifen die Früchte ja eh nicht, unreife, giftige und eben auch bio können wir spanische rettichähnliche Früchte von Almeria kaufen.

Ein absolutes Brechmittel und für meine Fernsehsucht damals schon der endgültige Abtörner war und ist aber „Aeschbacher“. Seine Sendung führte zu meiner fast völligen Abstinenz von SRF. Radio SRF1 und "Schweiz aktuell" sind beides Sendungen, die bernerischer nicht daher kommen könnten. OK, es gibt ja eh nur arte...

Weil andere im gemeinsamen Haushalt aus Berufsgründen jeden Tag die Meteo einstellen, komme ich nicht umhin, periodisch immer wieder dieses Berner Maitschi eh, diese Familienfrau, das Wetter mit grossen Augen bärndeutsch zelebrieren zu sehen, d.h. sich selbst vorzuzeigen: „...gäng Wouche u Räääge“. Ich habe mir eine fast telepathisch zu nennende Fähigkeit zugelegt, es vorher zu ahnen:  Ja heute, meine Befürchtungen bewahrheiten sich, ist sie wieder live, angezogen, wie das in Bärn ja vielleicht progressiv ist  und am Schluss der Prognose verschmitzt dann doch noch in einer hoffnungslosen Wettersituation etwas Positives nennend und „en wonderschöne Obe“ wünschend. Och Gott, es gibt doch einen Berner Lokalsender, dort hätte dies ja alles seine Berechtigung.




Die Antwort aus Bern:


Besten Dank für Ihr Mail.

Ihre Kritik nehmen wir zur Kenntnis, auch wenn wir den Vorwurf der «Verbernisierung» von Schweizer Radio und Fernsehen (SRF) nicht wirklich nachvollziehen können.
Als SRF versuchen die ganze Schweiz zu repräsentieren – auch auf der Ebene des Unternehmens.

Dass man uns auch anders einschätzt, können Sie folgender Zuschauerkritik entnehmen, die ebenfalls letzte Woche bei uns eingegangen ist:

«Als Basler hat man eh schon seine Mühe, dass das 'Schweizer' Fernsehen so sehr Zürich-verliebt ist - praktisch nur noch Zürcher ModeratorInnen, Zürcher Dialekt, Meteo auf dem Dach mit Blick auf Zürich etc. -, obwohl es neutral sein sollte (oder gerne auch einen Sender an Basel abtreten könnte - warum kann Zürich allein über das gesamte Deutschschweizer Sendegebiet bestimmen? -)»

Sie sehen, wie schwierig es ist, es allen recht zu machen ;-) Wir geben trotzdem unser Bestes.

Freundliche Grüsse




 Beznau, Mühleberg, Gösgen: abstellen!


Am 19. Juni 2016 reisten viele ältere und ganz junge AKW-Gegner, ganze Familien (und eine Handvoll Journalisten) nach Windisch/Brugg neben der Arena, um ihrem Unmut über den wegen missratenen Wahlen verzögerten AKW-Ausstieg kund zu tun. Aernschd Born sang ein paar wirklich dürftige Liedchen, fast schon abschreckend harmlos („mer sind e wänneli ufgwacht“—ich bitte euch!) da war kein Saft und keine Kraft. Der in diesem Jahr obligate Regenguss blieb nicht aus, ca. eine Stunde lang goss es wie aus Kübeln. Man vernahm, dass im Bözberg ein Atomendlager geplant sei—der schlechtest mögliche Standort, da sich hier das &b

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