How did I run into this? Well, the other day, I searched for my name on Amazon, on a mobile, and among other things, a new CD by Souren Baronian turned up. I’d seen the name before, but had not realized that Souren Baronian is a musician. The CD was described as jazz. I took note.

Days later, I searched for it again, listened to fragments of the tracks on the CD, went to YouTube, found a video of a session at the Michiko Studios, heard him play an instrument while the musicians were tuning – the full video is almost two hours, and I’ll watch it later – and I thought “Oh! I like that! What is it?”

So I searched for what he plays. Besides the clarinet and soprano saxophone, he plays duduk and kaval (and maybe more). Duduk it turned out not to be. Kaval it was. Did another search on Amazon and another one on YouTube and that is how I found this. Beautiful!

Okay, so Dosev is playing in room that adds some power to the sound in this video, but there is quite a bit more to it. (Haven’t finished watching the entire video yet as I am busy.)

I’d been looking for a longer and wooden flute or whistle (than penny whistle) for a while and figured I might have to try a shakuhachi but now I think that kaval is it. There seem to be many variants, and I suspect that I will want one or two Bulgarian kavals, instruments like the ones shown in the first bit of this video.

Anyway, something for my wish list and to look into later!

Why Portsmouth should diminish traffic

I wrote an article about it on LinkedIn. If you’re interested, you can find it, and you don’t need me to post the link here. Southampton can’t do anything as drastic as this. Bournemouth can’t. Chichester can’t. London can’t. But Portsmouth can.

And Portsmouth can turn this into a giant plus and use it to boost the economy, but it won’t. Because it is drowning in crap such as bullying and corruption, also at city council level, and likes seeing itself as the powerless whining underdog a little bit too much. There is very little true vision left in this town, where too much of the focus is on traditional capitalism and on the past. The industries of the past are GONE, folks. Quit waffling about that and move forward.

Here are a few links to supporting studies:

All I hear is stupid excuses.

  • The impact of cars on our space

    No space for trams. Sure there is!

  • The people with more than 2 cars will protest and shout very loudly. Wear ear plugs! (What about the 80 or 90% or 95% of the rest of your population? 70% have no car or only 1 car. Many of Portsmouth’s inhabitants hardly ever get out of Portsmouth.)
  • Shop owners will complain. Show them that most of their customers are actually coming from within a small radius and give them decent business support! Most are probably delusional in thinking that their customers come from miles away and may blame traffic measures for their own failures (a certain pet supplies shop owner comes to mind).
  • A certain lawyer will whine. Tell her to shut up. She doesn’t know what she is talking about. (If she makes you feel stupid and ignorant, that’s because she is talking complete rubbish!)

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Takes herself to night school to understand the law


Why did they all lay down? To sleeheep?



The other America
You can find her Sunday
Sitting by a stream
On her own
All alone
The other America
Might show up on Tuesday
At your kitchen door
She will ask politely
“Is anybody home?
Or did they all lay down
To sleep through the now?
And if they all lay down
I’ll be waiting for them
At the river bed
Once they wake from their rest”
The other America
Takes herself to night school
To understand the law
She may bring you questions
When she finds the flaw
“Why did they all lay down
To sleep through the now?
And if they all lay down
I’ll be waiting for them
At the river bed
Once they wake from their rest”
We could be opening a doorway
Globally but that’s okay
Once upon a time you had faith
You would not be swayed
By fools untouched by clairvoyance
And you swore that we’d be brave
Well, not today
No, not today
Because we all lay down
To sleep through the now
And if we all lay down
She’ll be waiting for us
Where the rivers cross
Once we wake from our rest
“All the best,” the Other America


Where is the other Britain?


Niks aan de hand…

“Die gevaarlijke gek, dat krankzinnige brein, daarginds in Berlijn.”

Reverberating echoes of the run-up to WW II from Foxtrot, the musical. I saw it as a teenager and was highly impressed by all that darkness, and slightly intimidated. “Ridi, rada, ridi, rada!” It sounded like the alarm calls of the sirens of emergency services and calamity warnings.

“That dangerous fool, that insane brain, in yonder Berlin.”

The year before, in my 4th year in high school (which had a total of 6), we were all offered the possibility to subscribe to a theatre series in my high-school class. The series weren’t free, but there may have been a discount. I didn’t go. My dad hadn’t thrown out those invitations, which he had done with the invitation to ballroom dance classes as I later found out, but I was simply unable to find a class mate who was interested in the same series.

“If this continues in this way, I’ll never get to go anywhere,” I decided. So the year after, I signed up for the series I wanted – the cocktail series, as I wasn’t familiar with the theatre – and started going on my own. Thus, a tradition was born. I’ve never had any regrets about that!

To the contrary. There have been later years when I was living in Amsterdam, around the corner from several theatres, during which I had several series – up to six, I think – at once, sometimes leading to three or four performances in a week (but that was rare). I immersed myself in a lot of music and a lot of modern dance. Loved it!