McDonald’s at the Louvre. It sounds like something is wildly amiss. Like Pepsi and Coca-Cola joining hands to produce the worst-tasting diet cola ever. Louvre used to be a place where art lovers and enlightened people could seek refuge from the zombies that make up most of our modern society, but this proposal is seemingly the Louvre’s true way of appreciating the core of their friends.

Yes, the Louvre has decided it wants to have a tremendous crap on all of the art-loving world. Instead of allowing this McDonald’s restaurant (and even a McCafé) to set down outside, some hundred yards away, it has accepted them inside its buildings.

Frankly speaking, I feel betrayed. They charge an enormous amount of money to allow entrance after spending several hours in a tourist-infested line, and when you now finally gain entry you’re finding yourself at McDonald’s. It’s horrible and terrifying. And rude as well!

So. The Louvre has a lot to do. They’re losing their image as a cultural icon in favour of becoming Americanised and even more commercial than they already were. Why not install a decent French restaurant instead? Welcome to the first installment of the modern money-obsessed aspect of the art world. Botticelli, Michelangelo and Vermeer would spin malevolently in their graves if they knew. For ages.

Oh, and by the way; this text is a wee bit short due to having been written on an iPhone. Sorry!

More information: Telegraph Les mer »

The Un-Future of Pubs

I’m living in a town boasting a massive 10 000 citizens. We have eight cinemas, a three storey library, three gas stations, so many roundabouts you’ll get dizzy simply from counting them, five American-style bingos and no pubs. Not a single pub. We have a few restaurants and pizzerias where beer can be ordered, but no real pubs. Nowhere you can enter, ask for a beer, sit down with the paper and relax and leave. This is a problem.

Imagine you’re worn out, tired and lazy after a long day at work. You haven’t even had the time to take a bathroom break to read the news from yesterday and decide you should drown your sorrows with a cold pint of the golden brew while reading. Your choice? Order a £25 pizza on the side or read the paper accompanied by aggrotech music at 105dB with psychedelic teenagers jumping around you shouting “Come on, dude, party out with us. Look, Peter’s about to throw a chair at the bartender! Go Peter!!”. You can’t. You could take a beer home, or skip the whole thing and meet yet another miserable day without one.

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Tarantino Does It Again

Once upon a time… in Nazi-occupied France. Yes, it is indeed the opening of a fairytale. And what a fairytale it is that the wizard of dialogue serves us in Inglourious Basterds, even in several languages! It is partly dark, partly sinister and specked with an immense amount of humour, wits and irony, perhaps even more so than we’ve seen in previous Quentin Tarantino features.

In the opening scene, we meet the Nazi “Jew hunter” SS Colonel Hans Larda (Christian Waltz), who is suspecting French dairy farmer Perrier LaPadite (Denis Menochet) is hiding a family of Jews in his house. Opening with a long and, as usual, superbly written dialogue, this pretty much sets the pace for the feature as a whole. The tension is at times unbearable, and the subtle details some die hard Tarantino fans will pick up, makes this a movie for everyone to enjoy.

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The Shadow

The clock sounded twelve times
as I awoke in my leather chair.
“Time to get to bed,” I thought,
arose, but something was there.
On the far end wall of the room,
I saw it, never later forgot;
a shadow on the wall before me,
as I moved, it moved not.

“Shoo! Thou art not real!” I shouted, when
a sudden coolness filled the room.
The intense darkness began to grow
in this hour of horror and gloom.
The clock stopped ticking,
but its ceasing was not all;
for during that silent second of cold,
the Shadow jumped to another wall.

“Begone, pest!” I hissed loudly
but the Shadow did not disappear.
I felt like trapped in this room of mine,
in the house I held so dear.
No sound could be heard, but
the chill I felt clearly stated nay;
it would not move, it would not hide
it would never go away.

To this day the house is still alit,
during all hours of the night.
Several lamps are constantly emitting
the brightest degree of light.
Still, the feeling of cold is present
even from far away.
And if you gaze upon the walls of despair,
the Shadow is still there today.

There are several things Europeans have done, does and will do better than the Americans for no obvious reasons. Europe’s had the greatest composers, the best film directors, the best painters, the best authors and novelists, and the best kitchen. Now, I am not saying that the Americans are inferior, not at all, they are for instance a lot better than we Europeans when it comes to melting several cultures together into one, and I cannot think of one European company with the same globalisation effect and influence over mankind as the American companies have in the past.

If we look back at the kitchen, however, there is one thing in particular (or one food, I might be tempted to say) which the Americans have never got the hang of. I’m talking of the delicacy that is cheese. According to Jenny and Judy Ridgwell, in their book “Food Around the World”, it seems the first cheeses were in fact produced in Asia, in the Middle East or by nomadic Turkic tribes in Central Asia. There is however, no conclusive evidence indicating this is perfectly true and should be regarded as fact.

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Throughout history, mankind have told stories. I shan’t recite every medium from the cave paintings via spoken language and singing, the printing press which opened for printed media such as books and newspapers, to the telephone, radio, television and the Internet. I just want you to imagine how much work lies behind every single medium up to date, how many tiny inventions were needed and how many working hours and creative minds were involved only to allow the radio to work.

Why I ask this of you, you say? Well, the simple explanation is that most modern media are used only to broadcast and publish stories, news items and entertainment that are of no value whatsoever. Have a glance at the website of The Sun, listen to your local popular radio station, turn on your television on any channel but a pure news broadcaster and tell me what you see. Are you going to remember it in a year? Is it of any value to your life? Do you think you or anyone around you will experience life as more important after this receiving of information? Of course not! It’s all rubbish.

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Til Fots

En gård står igjen, så ensom og forlatt,
uten en sjel til å bo i dens varme.
Midt i et land, så mørkt og forhatt,
hvor samhold svekker og påfører harme.

De raser gjennom bygder og byer,
ingen er trygge, i hytte eller gods.
Himmelen dekkes av sorte skyer,
når de kommer, de kommer til fots.

En gylden stige senkes ned
mens vinduers lys fordufter.
Alt for mange sjeler går med
når Han sine lakeier lufter.

De raser gjennom bygder og byer,
ingen er trygge, i hytte eller gods.
Himmelen dekkes av sorte skyer.
Han kommer, Han kommer til fots.

To Aldin

In the cold hours of the morn
I found you laying cold.
I knew it would be a day of mourn,
the last of a life so bold.

The night before, you were eager
to feel my warmth and love,
alas, gone was your vigour,
travelling to the above.

Your life was filled with wonder,
awake both day and night;
I will come see you yonder
when my time is right.

The last message you sent me
will never be forgot.
A moment which you lent me,
that I’ll relive a lot.

I wished for you to abide,
not to crack my hardened shell.
I was there by your side,
until your last heartbeat fell.

Thank you for your time, my friend,
you’ll always be with me.
Now a hole of pain I must fend,
until you again I’ll see.

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