In 2016, some 41 packages with police uniforms were delivered to the wrong people, possibly falling into the wrong hands as well. And Dutch police union APNV are calling this regular occurrence “the tip of the iceberg”.
A few days ago, a man who had quit the force came home to find a package on his doorstep from the police: parts of a police uniform, a package he was never supposed to have ‘received’ in the place. Received is a big word, because the package was left in front of the door in plain view.
Sloppy delivery, you say? For sure. And many of the uniforms are delivered to the neighbours instead or next to people’s dustbins.
Last November around Amsterdam there was a robbery involving criminals impersonating the police wearing actual police uniforms. Geez, I wonder how the baddies got their hands on the uniforms!
The police union wants to stop this type of unsafe delivery and get the police to pick up their uniforms at a police station, but the police claim say it’s too expensive in terms of logistics and personnel costs.
I had a casual talk with a criminologist yesterday who was worried about the police’s image in the media. I wonder if he realised how unbelievable ridiculous the police comes off in this country sometimes.
(Link: nhnieuws, Photo by Facemepls, some rights reserved)
Tags: packages, police, uniforms
I work at home and often accept packages for my neighbours who like many people are rarely home to receive their wares. People who are often at home for whatever reason end up playing post office for the entire street. Once the delivery people know you’re at home often, you’re screwed. Sure you can refuse packages, but not without having to defend yourself against pushy delivery people. You get that ‘but you’re at home doing nothing’ look from the delivery person who is ‘just trying to do their job’. In fact, you’ll end up doing their job for them. For a woman in the link below, it was so bad she turned off her doorbell and still had delivery people banging down her door, trying to deliver their packages. And that’s harassment.
I’ve unofficially turned into the package delivery point, and since I believe in getting along with my neighbours, I don’t really mind. Of course, it was terrible when I was on crutches with a broken leg in 2012 and the delivery people would ring and bang on my door, but that was par for the course. It stopped being OK a few weeks back when someone tried to deliver a huge bouquet of flowers to a sick neighbour who wasn’t home. I told the guy I wouldn’t accept it because the neighbour in question had been away for a while and that the flowers would wilt. He tried to convince me that flowers are nice and I could enjoy them until she got back. I told him that if he expected me to deliver wilted flowers to a sick woman just so he could make his delivery, that he was a bit of a dick. He told me again how nice flowers are and I told him he’d better leave before I put in a complaint.
My front door has a sign that says ‘no salespeople, no donation collectors and no religion peddlers’ (see photo), which I thought covered the scope, but apparently not. The woman who was being harassed put a ‘no packages’ sticker on her door, which sounds like a good idea, but Michiel Nieuwkerk from Zeeland went much further and turned a common problem into a business opportunity.
Annoyed at having to get his packages from the neighbours who were never home in the evenings, he set up package pick-up and delivery points with willing neighbours on ViaTim.nl, which charges people for that service. ViaTim service now has 22 points in South Holland and Zeeland and is growing fast.
I’m off to ponder joining in on this.
Tags: deliveries, packages, Zeeland
In Groningen, some 112 failed asylum seekers and asylum seekers waiting on answers who are homeless will soon be housed in an old hotel ship, explains John van Tilborg, Director of the Inlia Foundation in Groningen that works with asylum seekers. They all have a right to a place to stay during the night as well as a shower and a meal according to the Dutch government, but that same government isn’t doing what’s needed to ensure they have an actual place to say, Van Tilborg explains in a recent radio interview in Amsterdam on BNR.
“The State decides whether someone can stay here or not. If someone can stay, they get a resident’s permit from the State and if they have to go, the State has to kick them out of the country or make sure they leave. If that doesn’t happen, then the city is saddled with the problem, like it is now […]. The city has to pay for a problem created by the State and the city has no influence on the situation”.
And the rest is all about cities not getting the money they need from the State to deal with these people who end up on the street. Elections are coming up in March and the outgoing Dutch government has stopped all funding to new housing projects for asylum seekers, leaving cities to figure it out for themselves.
(Links: bnr.nl, dvhn.nl, Photo of the Vluchtkerk church in Amsterdam that housed many asylum seekers)
Tags: asylum seekers, Groningen, ship
The city of Woerden, Utrecht has made local news for having the right to open its shops on Sunday thanks to the progressive political parties in their municipal council. The religious parties who were against it and have left (bye!) still live in an imaginary world were nobody works on Sundays except the help. This is just a reminder to anyone who still thinks it’s liberal heaven over here.
It’s extremely disrespectful to claim that Sunday is a day of rest when there are tens of thousands of people working in hospitals, restaurants, shops, public transport, trains, as well as the police, fire brigade, emergency services, ambulances, carers, bars, cafés, theatres, construction and so on. If you don’t want employees to have to work more on Sundays or even weekends, we understand, but if your sole argument is that you want a day of rest and you’re not even fighting for other people’s rights not to be exploited, then don’t go to the shops and please feel to step out of as many municipal councils as you can.
Tags: shops, Sunday rest, Woerden
And it’s a wrap: the Dutch world record of playing Game of the Goose is now 80 hours and is in Dutch hands, getting the four guys who played it into the Guinness Book of World Records.
According to Omroep Brabant, the last few hours were exhausting and not much fun any more, but once they had broken the old world record, they got a boost to finish the job. Fighting against the will to sleep was the most difficult part of what they had to do, but they did it.
(Link and screenshot: omroepbrabant.nl)
Tags: board games, Noord-Brabant, Vught
Some of you probably had enough of board games during the holidays, but four Dutch friends are going to attempt to play Game of the Goose (‘Ganzenbord’ in Dutch) for 80 hours in a row, as a way to kick off the year.
Four friends from Vught, Noord-Brabant are trying to get into the Guinness Book of Records: they started playing today and plan to keep going until Friday. They do get a five minute break every hour.
The current world record of playing Game of the Goose is 62 hours. The merriment is taking place in the scouting building of Vught-Noord and you can even watch on a livestream.
(omroepbrabant.nl, Photo of Game of the Goose, Public Domain)
Tags: board games, Noord-Brabant, Vught
It’s that time of year again where we look back and tell you about some of the things we wrote about, and this year we had one clear theme that stood out and that, sadly, was ‘tastelessness’.
First the weird junk food combos:
Spring: the discodel
Summer: frikandel ice cream
Winter: smoked sausage and kroket
Dear Dutch snack bars, please follow our neighbouring countries and sell halloumi, and stop mixing crap already.
Next up, we have a tasteless escape room with Anne Frank as a theme.
The entire year saw some tasteless bashing of Ukraine. What did Ukraine ever do to us? Oh yeah, they gave back stolen Dutch paintings to a museum to show how classy they are.
As well, we found out in 2016 that supermarkets sell fertilised eggs, chicks prove it, we saw a food bank snub the poor over a Facebook like and had a good laugh at this organic fries truck stuck at a junk food chain drive.
And then to move towards some more classy bits, here’s the bicycle tunnel built in a single weekend in Utrecht, police training eagles to attack drones and a woman as the world’s first ever Professor of Fatherhood.
To finish off, here’s a story that went from classy to tasteless, an elderly woman sews bags from abandoned umbrellas, but then a few months later is pushed off her mobility scooter and robbed of her gold chain.
We’ll leave it at that, thanks for all your comments, and a reminder that next year is our 10th year anniversary in February, so I guess we should think about doing something special.
Happy New Year!
Tags: Anne Frank, drones, eldery, fries, police, supermarket, Ukraine
24oranges is going to take a breather for a few days to enjoy some peace and quiet, try out some new Christmas food and drinks, and catch up on some sleep.
Branko will again have a Top 10 list of this year’s favourite stories before the end of the year. By the way, next year on 23 February will be our 10th anniversary!
Happy Holidays and thanks for your continued support!
Tags: Christmas, Christmas tree
‘Treitervlogger’ (‘bully vlogger’) was coined in September 2016 by the Dutch press and is defined as ‘a vlogger who films their friends bullying locals, sometimes even egging them on’. It sounds very specific and it is, as it is based on a series of bullying incidents in Zaandam involving a young Dutch-Turkish man, his friends and their ‘hoodvlogs’, a Dunglish term for ‘neighbourhood vlogs’. Although the instigator apologised for his behaviour after cooling off in a jail cell fora few days at some point, he plans to keep vlogging – lucky us.
More than 100,000 votes were tallied, with ‘treitervlogger’ getting 35% of them. Second place goes to ‘pokémonterreur’ ‘Pokémon terror’ with 23% and third place to ‘trumpisme’ (‘Trumpism’) at 11%.
On the lighter side, the Flemish went with ‘Samsonseks’ (‘Samson sex’), which refers to parents having sex while their kids are watching ‘Samson en Gert’, a children’s show about a man and his dog.
This entire annual process is done for the Van Dale dictionary, which has the Netherlands and Flanders working together and celebrating their cultural differences.
Tags: Pokémon, Trump, Van Dale, vlogger, word of the year, Zaandam
This street sign is from Amsterdam in 2007, with an extra ‘r’, wavering between ‘brug’ and ‘burg’.
A lot of people don’t care about spelling unless it’s their name being butchered. The city of Almere messed up the last name of former Dutch Prime Minister from 1973-1977 Joop Den Uyl by going with ‘Uil’. It was noticed by a politician of the Labour Party, of which Den Uyl was a member – he’s now deceased.
The park where the ‘path’ (‘pad’) actually is, is called ‘Den Uylpark’ where there’s a statue of Joop Den Uyl with what I’m sure is a plaque with his name also written as ‘Joop Den Uyl’.
Almere apparently has a reputation of messing up its colourful street names. In 2011 it took the city three tries to get ‘Chicagostraat’ right: first it was ‘Chigacostraat’, then ‘Chigagostraat’ and finally ‘Chicagostraat’. In 2008 ‘Popeyestraat’, named after the American cartoon character Popeye was ‘Popeystraat’, and the character ‘Marsipulami’ from the Belgian Gaston Lagaffe comic strips was first ‘Marsipulamihof’ instead of ‘Marsupilamihof’.
(Links: nos.nl, nu.nl, Photo of a misspelled street name in Amsterdam by Herenlunch)
Tags: Almere, Gaston Lagaffe, Joop Den Uyl, spelling