dressing up

Today’s post does not only contain a picture for the 52 photos project but is in fact about this week’s challenge, called “ALL DRESSED UP”.

I’ve never been one for dressing up much, except maybe for a few occasions as a kid. In Germany we don’t have1 the kind of halloween tradition the US have had. What we have is the socalled 5th season2 wich involves a lot of dressing up.

I’ve never been into cosplay of sorts myself, I’ve been dressed for the occasion when I helped out at a medieval reenactment fair, but that’s pretty much it.

Dressing up fancy is also something I avoid. My comfort clothing for leaving the house varies a little with weather, but it’s pretty much jeans and t-shirts. Maybe a hoodie or sweater.

For festive family stuff like christmas dinners a shirt might be in order or a nice jumper.

I am lucky that there is not really any sort of dress code in my company, unless for special occasions. Generally if it’s clean and not offensive, I can come to work in jeans and a t-shirt I bought at a heavy metal concert without getting as much as a funny look, despite having a position that is associated with suit and tie if you go by the job title.

Of course there’s times when something a little more businesslike is called for. We’d have customers at the company or at an event we host, or we visit a customer or a supplier to discuss projects, partnership, business.

The preferred dress code for that is … suit and tie. Whenever I wear suit and tie, I feel a little out of place. Not as bad today as a couple of years ago, but I still tend to think people will notice that, or notice that I don’t like it, etc.
It sometimes feels less like a suit and more like a costume. All dressed up. It just doesn’t feel like me. I don’t really need or want it, but I accept it when it’s deemed appropriate.

I try to avoid that by only going for suit and tie when I absolutely have to. For most occasions I can get away with dress pants or even dark jeans, shirt, and a softshell jacket with our company logo. Or a company polo shirt.

So that’s at work. There is another thing I have to get all dressed up for. I play the tuba in the orchestra from the village I grew up  o.n At most of the performances we wear sort of a traditional uniform. I don’t like that one very much, but I’ve worn it for twenty years no and got sort of used to it.

Then there’s military. No, I’m not in the military any more, not even the reserve, but I’ve done my military service back when it was still active in Germany and even added three months to it. I mostly enjoyed that experience, and I didn’t even mind the uniform. Well, I never wore the dress uniform, so I guess I got lucky. But I liked the camo stuff. It looked reasonably good on me, and it was very practical3. Also it had a meaning of sort. It showed affiliation to something bigger, and the unit I served with actually did something important.  So there’s that.

If you take in what I’ve written about that topic so far you might get the idea that I am somewhat pragmatic. Well, it’s true. And it’s reflected in my thoughts about clothing. Sure, I will notice and even admire something nice or beautiful. I might like it, and even want to wear it. But at heart I usually will judge clothes by usefulness first. If I deliberately get all dressed up it will ultimately be because I have to. It’s cold. It’s wet. Someone wants me to. Or maybe I have to climb around on an active volcano and don’t want to breathe in too much sulphuric steam or get hurt by falling rocks.

So here’s a couple of pictures I found of me being…

 

All dressed up!

 

Footnotes
  1. or at least we didn’t when I was young []
  2.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carnival_in_Germany,_Switzerland_and_Austria []
  3. leg pockets! []

my submission to the writing challenge

For all those who missed it, there is a writing challenge going about. The full rules are here and I also wrote a blog post about it to get more people to join. What’s more, you still can join until the end of the month!

When my friend announced the writing challenge, my first thoughts were:

  • awesome
  • I’ll use the words all in order of apperance
  • I’ll put them all in really bad limericks
  • crap!

Because, if you know me, you know I’ll never back out of a silly thing once I’ve been goaded to do it.

So before you submit to the horribleness of my limerick epic, take a moment to watch this picture which I submitted to the 52 photos project.

This week’s prompt was “my reflection”. Like most hobby photographers I’m a little obsessed with reflections, so thought about posting some picture or the other of reflections on water, in windows, sunglasses or polished cars. But then I stumbled up on this one, and I’ll leave it up to you what it means.

tuba_backlight-21

 

The 2013 #chatspike word of the week writing challenge!

This year needs a retrodiction
In words of science or fiction
Not an Ekphrasis
Which is quite a bliss
Because it would end up as LOLcat caption.

Ratiocination is not really needed
Just the guidelines have to be heeded
Hey you all,
Be veridical
Have fun, sub rosa, or beat it.

It wont do malinger today
Leading my fanfaronade astray
to use every word
In t’order t’appear’d
Or wangle myself out of the way.

Some might perceive this as longueur
The clerisy finds silliness hard to bear
Ailurophiles chat
’bout the lack of cat
I guess I’ll have the canaille’s hat to wear.

No factotum is doing my writing
Which is quite enlight’ning
Aureately ’tis not
Didn’t bathe to hot
Do you wish yet I was struck by lightning?

I made the list my MacGuffin
But my cathexis needed tough’nin
Please stay my friend
Before the end
The bad rhymes ‘ll have you coughin’.

If they have the most venal looks
Or I’ll macerate and infuriate cooks
Whatever the trance
There’s no chance
This thing will end in a colporteur’s books.

Want to bleach your mind yet?
The criteria have not been met
I doubt they will
Please stay chill
For billingsgate the stage won’t be set.

No billet-doux, no effrontery
But quite some alterity
Sequacious
yet voracious
Sorry for this bad blathery.

You may find some hypocorism for me
Unless reading this your death will be
Want to keep living?
Start woolgath’ring!
Before the wordy vorago swallows thee.

This work is all but terpsichorean
And if you get hold of a DeLorean
Go back in time
Your priority prime
To find a nudnik who’ll translate this to Korean.

This poem is just a means to snaffle
Whatever wacie put into the raffle
I’m kidding,
Do my bidding,
Don’t take this serious, I’m just trying to baffle.

It’s hard making sense of ecotone,
But the sense has long been blown
If you expect
Sense in effect
There will be more to make you groan.

This epic piece wont have a corrigendum
If ever reading it I can refrain from
I’ll be glad
If Instead
I’ll turn to philately or play the steel drum.

Those limericks will never cause a masscult
Deuteragonists will consider it an insult
If forced to read
They will plead
To be spared from an extemporaneous decision’s result.

If you spread this in some conurbation
Even if only an inchoate iteration
Camarillas will form
And raise up a storm
To bring this arriviste to a carceral location.

To advert people to this chthonic thing
Some malapropism might make your ears ring
Words are abused
Brains get bruised
Hurts some apparatchik like a baseball swing.

In fact I think this crap is so bad
“Tu quoque” is no retort I’ll have had
If whoever
Hopefully never
Tells me my strung up words make ’em mad.

Only a few more words are left to use
My attempt to get by is a fey ruse!
Oriflamme!
Jean-Claude van Damme!
Styptic and mythomania don’t rhyme.1

There will be more limericks in the future. At least twice. And I promise they’re gonna be mostly better.

Thanks for bearing with me. And sorry you had to read this.

Footnotes
  1. boom! HAHA! It’s not a proper limerick epic without one of these []

the perils of online auctioning

This week’s photo prompt at http://www.52photosproject.com/ is titled

wide open spaces

There is a load of wide open spaces in the world, and most of them can1 photographed in one way or the other. There’s deserts, tundra, the oceans, great plains.

Another wide open space is the creativity this photo prompt wants us to explore, I guess. A little harder to photograph that, but there are ways. The human mind, our imagination or our life is another wide open space that surely could be portrayed with photography, and everyone of us can fill in various ways.

Then, obviously, there is the internet. A wide open space that we can explore, get lost in or try to fill for ourselves. What I like most about it, is the people I meet there, but there’s another post about that over here.

Not everyone I met on the internet fits into the category of that first blog post, though. So before I present you with my photographic wide open space, here’s a totally unrelated story of what happened to me in my earlier internet days, on a well-known online auction platform.

In November 2003 I was once on the hunt for a certain DVD. I was looking for Pulp Fiction, and at the time that was harder than it looks. The trouble with buying Pulp Fiction on DVD in Germany is, that for some licensing reason, you can only get it with German Subtitles you can’t even switch off when watching it with the original audio track.

Knowing that I was delighted when I found what I was looking for on that auction website2, with no bids, a five Euro starting offer and a few days to go. The offer didn’t say much in the line of text, but being rather excited I was willing to give it a try.

The vendor had a lot of positive reviews, what could go wrong?

A few days later I had won the auction with my starting bid. Happily I sent the vendor a message, asking for his banking details, since – strangely enough – they weren’t automatically provided. It took a full week to get an answer, but at the time I didn’t really think much about that. Instead I instantly transferred the money and sent a message saying the money was underway. Of course I also included my adress for delivery.

A week later (a week that included an unanswered message from me to the vendor, asking if the money had arrived yet), I finally get word: “I need your delivery adress again so I can ship the tape?”

At that point I was somewhere between disappointed and annoyed. Seriously? A week between each reply, and then he didn’t even get my adress the first time.About to answer, I stopped dead in my tracks. Wait, what was that? Tape? I reread the offer, and yup. I missed it. The text from the offer in fact said it was a tape, and it was posted in the right category. I was so excited to finally have found what I’d been looking for that I overlooked this tiny and yet important fact.3

I just bought a video tape instead of a DVD. Well, crap. My next message was a little longer.

“Hi, just now I realized I accidentally bid on a video cassette, not on a DVD which is what I actually was looking for. Would you mind if we cancelled the whole thing? You can of course withhold the auction fees and all that from the refund.
If you don’t want that, it’s fine, just send the cassette to the following adress.”

You might guess it, my lovely business partner kept me waiting another week, before he sent me a reply, packed with adventurous orthography and dubious grammar which I won’t bother to translate.
Basically he wrote something like:

“What’s that supposed to mean? I already wrapped it all up, I just need to put the adress on it.  Just watch the movie and resell it! What now?!?!”

I replied, being rather annoyed – if not pissed off –  briefly: “Deary me, I only asked. I even wrote that I’d take the tape. So please, ship to <my adress>.”

I got the movie a few days later. I watched it, there were some additional scenes and an interview on it, the quality was decent, but I never got a reply or anything to my last message.
I thought a few hours about the sort of review I’d give to my vendor. It worried me that a negative review would only spring from the fact that I was stupid enough to bid on the wrong product, but I realized that wasn’t it. I was fine with my stupidity, I was fine with paying 5 bucks for the video tape, I was fine with watching it, even if I planned to get the DVD.

I realized I was annoyed with this vendor4 for three main reasons

  • a week between each message, without so much a “sorry, I’ve been busy”. Sorry, that’s not quick, not even in 2003
  • I gave my adress within minutes of transferring the money, it took the vendor another week to ask for it
  • the over-the-top reaction to my message “can we cancel? if no it’s ok, I’ll take it”

 

Thinking “what the hell” I went through with it, gave a negative5 review, stating that communication, shipping and execution was rather slow and inefficient.
I actually got a comment on the review from my vendor, stating “buyer suddenly didn’t want the product any more, was unreasonable, probably miffed”.6

A month later I realized I got a new review. I’d nearly forgotten about that story, but the review reminded me of the whole story. I think it’s my favorite review I’ve gotten anywhere, and it will be hard to top.

querulous informer, should be excluded from <online auction website>

I think I was angry about that for maybe 2 seconds, then I giggled a lot, tried to contact him again, explaining my review and asking to change that.  Because honestly, I’m fine with anyone who does not like my way of handling things, but please base it on facts and step away from name-calling.

I did not expect to get a reply and I got what I expected.

I still have the video tape here, despite not owning a vcr, and it’s my favorite ebay story.

Oh, and there’s even a happy end! A few years back I created something regarding Pulp Fiction7 to make a friend laugh, succeded and later she bought me Pulp Fiction on DVD when she spent a weekend in London.

 

And without further ado, here’s my contribution to the 52 photos project, a wide open space I photographed on a sailing trip in the Netherlands!

 

FransHorjus_204

Footnotes
  1. and have been []
  2. you know the one []
  3. fun fact: people not reading my messages correctly and thus getting something wrong is a pet peeve of mine to this day. oh the irony. []
  4. who had positive reviews in the hundreds, praising his friendly communication and quick reaction times []
  5. I didn’t really feel neutral about it []
  6. seriously? unreasonable? did he even read ANYTHING I wrote? []
  7. I’ll share it on a later blog post! []

a matter of perspective

This is it. Here I am, writing the blog that goes with this weeks 52 Photos Project photo prompt. Since I haven’t had anything special to write about these past days1 I’ll just write about this photo prompt and whatever comes to mind while chosing the right picture. And about the time I took the pictures you’ll find in the gallery at the bottom.

My first thought about this weeks’ photo prompt (something really small) was:

Oh well, time to go get the 90mm macro lens.

 

Thankfully my second thought was:

No, wait, too obvious. Boring.

Not that I find macro photography bad, boring, uncreative or anything else. But it’s so obvious I’m actually surprised I thought of doing it that way and photograph the tip of a needle or something. Sure, with the right lighting and depth of field that could be interesting, but luckily my third thought was the title of this blog post, which led into a different direction.

Something being large or small really is just a matter of perspective.

A spider2 smaller than your thumbnail can be larger than a SUV if you’re phobic. A gigantic suitcase3 will seem rather small if you try to pack stuff for three weeks without factoring laundromats into the equation.

Then there’s they way you perceive yourself. Standing on the edge of the Grand Canyon does make you feel rather small, holding the hand of a scared kid can make you feel like a giant.

Some people will tell you doing certain things, like that Grand Canyon edge experience, or riding on a water balloon, the view from a mountain top, looking up from under the Eiffel Tower or down from the highest point of castle will make you feel either very small and humbled, or maybe even large and powerful.

I guess I’m not that kind of guy. Sure, it’s impressive, or awesome, sometimes even intimidating, but for me it has never been an epiphany or something like that. I’m more the “wow, that’s big” *takes picture* kind of guy.

In 2010 I was invited to a hot air balloon event by a company my employer does business with. That included a short helicopter ride and a longer ride on a hot air balloon, a pretty big one actually. The basket or gondola held about a dozen people.

On that day I learned a lot about hot air balloons, ate nice food, had quite a bit of beer (a local brewery was sponsoring the event) and took loads of pictures. And at some point in the late afternoon we took off. We helped fill the hot air balloon, hastily climbed into the gondola and rose into the air.

I am not too fond of heights . Sort of. I don’t like climbing up narrow and steep staircases. Ladders will never be my friend. At the top of towers, looking down the wall, I feel weird. On stone bridges, at the edge of cliffs or even just walking on paths in the countryside that have steep slopes on one side of them, I tend to stick to the other side, constantly worried I might slip, slide, fall and crash down. Luckily I’m far from phobic, I always enjoy the view from higher up and I’d hate to pass up on a photo opportunity. I don’t have trouble with plane or helicopter rides either, I’ve even done4 abseiling down a 12 metres high tower5, crossed rope bridges or spent a while climbing around those climbing adventure rope thingies.

That said, looking down while the basket was rising the first 20 metres I did not feel all that confident. Luckily after that I was right as rain6. A balloon ride in fair weather is probably the smoothest form of transportation you can imagine. It does not sway or shake, going up or down feels perfectly natural and I’ve felt about as safe as I did standing on the ground7. The wind was great that day, and so was the light. We took loads of great pictures and touched the ground8 after a couple of hours, in the middle of a field. The pickup cars arrived, we emptied and folded up the balloon, loaded all the stuff onto the truck and got taken back to the event for food, drinks and the infamous night glow.

If you’ve ever seen hot air balloons up close, you know they are rather large. If you are in a hot air balloon high above them, they seem insubstantially small.

 

Footnotes
  1. well, nothing I didn’t instantly publish []
  2. don’t worry, no spider pics []
  3. no suitcase pics either. Sorry, in case you’re into that []
  4. and enjoyed []
  5. getting that second foot over the railing was really hard, though []
  6. or as sunshine, we had awesome weather that day []
  7. which was on average about half a mile down []
  8. admittedly that WAS a little bumpy but fun []

O Catnip Tree

And here’s another out-of-schedule post. I wonder how long it will take to annoy people with those, but when inspiration strikes, I have to succumb before I get over it.

So in this special case, twitter’s lovely Megan Paasch and a couple of writers did something on twitter called #12DaysOfTwitter1.

They wrote christmassy bloggy things, and you should totally check them out.

So a few minutes prior to writing this post, she posted the link to a blog post containing a very special christmas memory. In order to understand fully understand this blog post, you should read it2.

 

 

 

That’s when things got out of hand for me.

So I present you with the lyrics to the famous Christmas classic

 

O Catnip Tree

O Catnip Tree! O Catnip Tree!
Thy leaves are so sweet smelling;
O Catnip Tree! O Catnip Tree!
Thy leaves are so sweet smelling;
Not only pine when summer’s here,
But also nip, the cat we fear.
O Catnip Tree! O Catnip Tree!
Thy leaves are so sweet smelling!

O Catnip Tree! O Catnip Tree!
Much danger thou present’s to me;
O Catnip Tree! O Catnip Tree!
Much danger thou present’s to me;
Who would’ve thought that Pudah cat
Jumped up the tree and just like that?
O Catnip Tree! O Catnip Tree!
Thou crashest down almost on me!

O Windswept Tree! O Windswept Tree!
The draft will get you swaying!
O Windswept Tree! O Windswept Tree!
The draft will get you swaying!
The fireplace flue di’nt work quite right;
The window cracked all through the night.
O Windswept Tree! O Windswept Tree!
The draft will get you swaying!

O Windswept Tree! O Windswept Tree!
Thou crashest again and scareth me!
O Windswept Tree! O Windswept Tree!
Thou crashest again and scareth me!
We swept away the broken glass;
And hoped that time’s fin’lly the last;
O Shaky Tree! O Shaky Tree!
You fell again day number three!

I know, it weren’t three consecutive days, but give me a break, poetic license and all that, also I knocked this together in less than 30 minutes.

Merry 12th day of Christmas, everyone!

Footnotes
  1. apparently she started it similar to how she inspired me []
  2. http://darcicole.blogspot.co.uk/2014/01/on-twelfth-day.html?m=1 []

word of the week writing challenge

In 2013 one of my favorite online hangouts1 had a word of the week in the channel topic, prompted by a calendar wacie got in our secret santa 2012.

Being a writing enthousiast, she decided to turn this into a fun little challenge and here it is.

Your mission, if you choose to accept it, is to write a short story using all 53 words that were featured the in the #falling channel topic.

The guidelines are:

  • no minimum word count
  • no time limit (if you want to do it, do it for yourself), but subscriptions will be taken until the end of the month
  • word order does not matter
  • the definitions in the word list are not the only valid ones, feel free to use others
  • any tense or form of the word is ok
  • short story was suggested, but you can do whatever you want. poem, humor piece. Just use all the words.
  • incentive: writing practice, broadened vocabulary, satisfaction of having done something constructive with your time. depending on the number of entries there might be a surprise for you.
  • the entries will NOT be shared unless you expressly ask for it or share them yourse

If you want to submit your work, you can do it here.

 

Here’s the vocabulary for the task at hand:

  • Retrodict (v): to utilize present information or ideas to infer or explain (a past event or state of affairs)
  • Ekphrasis (n): a literary description of or commentary on a visual work of art
  • Ratiocination (n): the process of exact thinking; a reasoned train of thought
  • Veridical (adj): truthful, veracious; not illusory
  • Sub rosa (adv): in confidence, secretly
  • Malinger (v): to pretend to be sick or injured in order to avoid doing work
  • Fanfaronade (n): empty boasting, bluster
  • Wangle (v): to get something by clever methods or by persuading someone
  • Longueur (n): a boring part of something (such as a book or play)
  • Clerisy (n): intelligentsia
  • Ailurophile (n): a cat fancier, a lover of cats
  • Canaille (n): rabble, riffraff; proletarian
  • Factotum (n): a person whose job involves doing many different types of work
  • Aureate (n): of a golden color or brilliance; marked by grandiloquent and rhetorical style
  • MacGuffin (n): an object, event, or character in a film or story that serves to set and keep the plot in motion despite usually lacking intrinsic importance
  • Cathexis (n): investment of mental or emotional energy in a person, object, or idea
  • Venal (adj): capable of being bought or obtained for money or other valuable consideration, purchasable, open to corrupt influence and especially bribery; originating in, characterized by, or associated with corrupt bribery
  • Macerate (v): to cause to waste away by or as if by excessive fasting; to cause to become soft or separated into constituent elements by or as if by steeping in fluid, steeping or soaking
  • Colporteur (n): a peddler of religious books
  • Etiolate (v): to bleach and alter the natural development of (a green plant) by excluding sunlight; to make pale; to deprive of natural vigor, make feeble
  • Billingsgate (n): coarsely abusive language
  • Billet-doux (n): a love letter
  • Effrontery (n): a very confident attitude or way of behaving that is shocking or rude
  • Alterity (n): otherness, specifically; the quality or state of being radically alien to the conscious self or a particular cultural orientation
  • Sequacious (adj): subservient, tractable; intellectually servile
  • Hypocorism (n): a pet name; the use of pet names
  • Woolgathering (n): indulgence in idle daydreaming
  • Vorago (n): an engulfing chasm, abyss
  • Terpsichorean (adj): of or relating to dancing
  • Nudnik (n): a person who is a bore or nuisance
  • Snaffle (n): a simple usually jointed bit for a bridle; (v): to obtain especially by devious or irregular means
  • Ecotone (n): a transition area between two adjacent ecological communities
  • Banausic (adj): relating to or concerned with earning a living —used pejoratively; utilitarian or practical
  • Corrigendum (n): an error in a printed work discovered after printing and shown with its correction on a separate sheet
  • Philately (n): the collection and study of postage and imprinted stamps :  stamp collecting
  • Masscult (n): the artistic and intellectual culture associated with and disseminated through the mass media ; mass culture
  • Deuteragonist (n): the actor taking the part of second importance in a classical Greek drama; a person who serves as a foil to another
  • Extemporaneous (adj): composed, performed, or uttered on the spur of the moment, impromptu; carefully prepared but delivered without notes or text; skilled at or given to extemporaneous utterance; happening suddenly and often unexpectedly and usually without clearly known causes or relationships; provided, made, or put to use as an expedient
  • Conurbation (n): a large area consisting of cities or towns that have grown so that there is very little room between them
  • Inchoate (adj): being only partly in existence or operation, incipient; imperfectly formed or formulated; formless, incoherent
  • Camarilla (n): a group of unofficial, often secret, and scheming advisers, cabal
  • Arriviste (n): one that is a new and uncertain arrival (as in social position or artistic endeavor)
  • Carceral (adj): of, relating to, or suggesting a jail or prison
  • Advert (v): to turn the mind or attention —used with to; to call attention in the course of speaking or writing, make reference —used with to
  • Chthonic (adj): of or relating to the underworld, infernal
  • Malapropism (n): the usually unintentionally humorous misuse or distortion of a word or phrase; especially :  the use of a word sounding somewhat like the one intended but ludicrously wrong in the context; malaprop
  • Vermicular (adj): resembling a worm in form or motion; of or related to worms
  • Apparatchik (n): a member of a Communist apparat; a blindly devoted official, follower, or member of an organization (as a corporation or political party)
  • Tu quoque (n): a retort charging an adversary with being or doing what he criticizes in others
  • Fey (adj): fated to die, doomed; able to see into the future, visionary; marked by an otherworldly air or attitude; crazy; excessively refined; quaintly unconventional
  • Oriflamme (n): a banner, symbol, or ideal inspiring devotion or courage
  • Styptic (adj): tending to contract or bind; astringent; especially; tending to check bleeding
  • Mythomania (n): an excessive or abnormal propensity for lying and exaggerating

If you enjoy writing or just playing with words, please join in, it’ll be fun. If you know someone who might enjoy this challenge, please, spread the word. The more the merrier.

Should you publish the result of this challenge, let me know, I’m dying to see what others do.

My work will appear on this blog after I’ve submitted it so you can all laugh or roll your eyes or heave in disgust at what I did to those poor words.

Footnotes
  1. www.chatspike.net []

The first rule of Gluttony Club

You do not talk about Gluttony Club.

Actually we do talk about it. But let’s start at the beginning. In late 2000 one of my closest real friends at school1 suggested celebrating New Year’s Eve together with a few friends and – if applicable – their partners.  So we went grocery shopping together, met up at his parents’ place, invaded the basement and had a traditional German New Year’s Eve Dinner.
Raclette.
Around midnight all of us gathered outside to kick off the New Year with a glass of sparkling wine.2

We had a great deal of fun, so we decided to repeat this the following year and a tradition was born. The group grew and changed a little3, I opted out one year to go to Edinburgh.
Apart from those minor disruptions the core group basically remained the same.

After a few years of preparing dinner together, one of us suggested changing the setup a little.4
So for the next year we decided to split up, assign the courses (starters, salad, main course, dessert) to the participants and try to keep the actual food a surprise until the very last moment, where possible.5.

It was a raging success, so the updated tradition went on and expanded. Until at one point we were pretty much continuously serving and preparing new courses in one night, starting at 7pm and having dessert at about 3am.
Routine and different choices of food formed the whole process to the point where we’d usually start at about 7pm, having the main course around 11pm and dessert after midnight.

The following day we would meet again, finish cleaning up and having breakfast together, often with the parents whose house we’d invaded that year.

Our annual dinner is probably the one fixed date I look forward the most every year and the one date the whole group can be together without too much of a hassle, since everyone of us usually returns to their home for Christmas and New Year’s, even though some have moved between 150 and 450 miles away.

Next  This year will probably be the first time we will not celebrate at someone’s parents’ place, but maybe in the house one of us bought about 450 miles away. We will see. I’m already looking forward to it.

And to finish this nostalgic post with a little bit a load of deliciousness, here are a few impressions from  this year’s gluttony.

silent anticipation

field salad with mushrooms, onions and walnuts , honey mustard dressing

field salad with mushrooms, onions and walnuts , honey mustard dressing

vegetable curry with chickpea pancake

vegetable curry with chickpea pancake

salad with ham-wrapped feta cheese

salad with ham-wrapped feta cheese

fried swordfish steak with baked vegetables, garlic / honey mustard dip

fried swordfish steak with baked vegetables, garlic / honey mustard dip

ricotta cheese cake

ricotta cheese cake

Ricotta cheesecake

 

Happy New Year!

 

the aftermath of a typical NYE celebration in Germany, taken for http://www.52photosproject.com/

aftermath of a typical NYE celebration in Germany, taken for www.52photosproject.com – check it out, it’s awesome

 

Footnotes
  1. it was our final year []
  2. well, one of us missed it by a minute, deciding he needed to pee at 23:58 []
  3. due to changing relationships and in one case someone dropping off the radar and not even replying to mails or text messages anymore []
  4. we ran out of ideas after having fondue, raclette, burritos and a different kind of fondue []
  5. You DO NOT talk about Gluttony Club. This was made easier by having a lot of people being open-minded as to food. Well, baring one very special case, but that is another story []