Football and Class Struggle

What is football? Ask ten people and you get ten different answers. “The most important side-issue” is a popular saying in Europe. “Ballet for overpaid nancy boys”, is another. ” Football is emotion”, you’ll hear from people to justify verbal or physical violence as a result of the ‘Beautiful Game’ (British term). Brazilians like to say “God is round” (though that might refer to their fondness of big butts?) Che…


A Philosophical Reflection on Rise of the Tomb Raider

“As children we question the world around us, we learn, we accept and gradually we lose our capacity to wonder. But some do not. The explorers, the seekers of truth. It is these pioneers who define the future of mankind.” There are many reasons why I enjoyed Rise of The Tomb Raider so much. One of them is the deep level of familiarity and relatability I came to feel for…


Shut up, George

George Lucas is not a fan of the new Star Wars movie. In a bit of an embarrasing interview with USA Today he compares handing his franchise over to Disney as breaking up with a spouse and at some point even as selling his children to white slavers. Shortly after the article was published he hasted to rectify that awkward metaphor, but obviously as a courtesy call. His deeper feelings…


Nazis in My Back Yard

With a bitter-sweet amusement I listened yesterday to the reports on the radio about a set of stolen paintings from the Netherlands that ended up in the hands of a fascist militia in Ukraine. An expert on the matter told about the volunteer battalions that are fighting in the Donbass area and their connection to the far right Svodoba party. He even went into the history of the right in…


I Can Be Civilized!

  I suffer from anxiety. Not to a clinical degree, but it’s something that hinders me in daily life. Or used to hinder me. I take medication for it and it helps. I also learn how to deal with it better, which includes avoiding triggers and teaching my body to stay calm during a bad spell. I also have simple home remedies. Comfort treatment to zone me out of the…


Grandola Vila Morena

Last weekend I visited a group of comrades from Belgium. After a day of interesting discussions and speeches, the night took a lighter tone with drinks, stories and songs. Alan from the International committee shared memories from the time he was recruited, and how things had to be all hush-hush back in the 70s. Amelie, Bruno and I discussed the quirky differences between Flanders and the Netherlands, and what colourful…


Black Pearls

It’s that time of the year again where critics stumble over each other to find a new perspective for their review of the newest Call of Duty title. As much as the developers must struggle to find ways to tweak and rejuvenate the familiar formula, I suppose it’s not much easier to think of ways to write about it in a way readers are teased once again to read it….


A Chain of Events

In his classic novel “The Assault” late Dutch author Harry Mulisch deals with the question of guild and responsibility. Who is responsible for the murder of the protagonist’s family? The Nazis who carry out their execution? The resistance that assassinated a Nazi collaborator in front of their house, knowing there would be repercussions? The collaborator who made himself a murder target with his treacherous ways? It’s a scenario that’s familiar…


This Is Not For Us

A few weeks ago a female friend of mine was describing her experiences with Duke Nukem Forever. She was familiar with the chauvenist nature of the game and the bad ratings it received, but as a fan of the older releases and first person shooters in general, she decided to give it a try. For a good part of the game she thought it wasn’t actually that awful, and still…