I knew that La Trappe was the only Trappist beer brewed in the Netherlands, as I used to annoyingly point this out to shopkeepers who placed the beer under Belgium simply because it had a French name. La Trappe is brewed by De Koningshoeven brewery in Berkel-Enschot near Tilburg, Noord-Brabant. There’s also my story about drinking all kinds of ‘Trippel’ (triple) beers on Queen’s Day (now King’s Day) and when it was my turn to buy a round, I showed up with La Trappe’s Quadruppel (quadruple) to kick it up a notch.
But now for the first time in 125 years there’s a new Trappist called ‘Zundert’, brewed by the Kievit brewery from the monks of the Maria Toevlucht Abbey in Zundert, Noord-Brabant. The beer will be available as of 4 pm on 30 November until 1 December at 25 participating Zundert cafes and restaurants.
In the entire world there are only eight other Trappist beers: six in Belgium, one in Austria and now two in the Netherlands.
Tags: beer, La Trappe, Noord-Brabant, Trappist
A bit in the same vein as a Dutch talent show jury not recognising an established singer-songwriter, this time a fake artist peddles copies of works by Russian avant-garde artist Kazimir Malevich in the hopes of being accepted to two possible art academies. Watch the video to find out more about why that is.
Someone actually does recognise the suprematist style of the candidate’s portfolio, with one man claiming to be ‘walking through art history’ when browsing through it. The general consensus is that the candidate’s work is ‘at the very early stages’ and not good enough to get into art school. However, these same works are worth millions of euro, some of which I believe are currently on display at Amsterdam’s Stedelijk Museum for the Kazimir Malevich and the Russian Avant-Garde exhibition.
In Dutch, with English titles and subtitles, with a nice facepalm factor:
(Link: www.amsterdamadblog.com, Photo of Malevich’s works by ngEdwin, some rights reserved)
Tags: Amsterdam, Malevich, Stedelijk
Saying sorry profusely and ‘distancing oneself from the incident’ is purely being done not to get sued. And suing does not happen that often, but this time the guy from Arnhem who was refused an internship for being black went straight to the police and filed a complaint.
An electronics company in Arnhem refused a candidate based on his skin colour and sadly, the internal e-mail in which this was done was sent to the candidate by mistake.
“I had a look, it’s nothing. First of all he’s dark-coloured (nigger). And he has little experience with computers etc. on his resume.”
The nigger part is in the e-mail as such, and ‘it’s nothing’ means ‘it won’t work out’. The employee that sent the mail by mistake never would have apologised had they not been caught. So basically, they really are racist and the candidate has a point.
A run of racist and discriminatory remarks have plagued the Netherlands as of late, and co-blogger Branko has been writing them up on another blog, calling it ‘The coming out of the racists’.
And after the racist remarks towards a Chinese student that hit television recently, here’s a column by a Canadian of Chinese descent married to a Dutchman of Chinese decent and their takes on it.
(www.deondernemer.nl, Image: Wiering Software’s video game Zwarte Piet)
Tags: Arnhem, Chinese, race, racism
Artworks that are considered to be of national importance will be given protected status in an effort to stop galleries from selling them to foreign or private buyers, according to rules drawn up by the Netherlands Museums Association. Dutch museums will also be given preferred buyer status for works they want to sell, and if a museum wants to sell something, they will have to wait two months to see if another domestic buyer comes forward first before selling to a party from outside the country.
Museum Gouda was criticised for selling The Schoolboys by Marlene Dumas, at Christie’s in London back in 2011 without first offering it to other Dutch museums, which highly displeased the Netherlands’ best selling contemporary artist.
Dutch museums, often at the centre of controversy, apparently own some 139 contentious artworks as well.
(Link: www.amsterdamherald.com; illustration: the Van Gogh that was ‘discovered’ in 2011)
Tags: auction, Gouda, museums
In Ede, Gelderland there is a tunnel that cars and motorbikes are forbidden to drive through, but public transport buses and bikes are allowed to use. The warning signs are clear to drivers, but still, cars and motorbikes keep driving through the tunnel to the tune of 24,000 fines at 90 euro a piece since 3 December 2012. Cars and motorbikes used to be allowed to drive through the tunnel, but that was more than a year ago, which is ample time to get used to a new traffic situation one would think.
It boggles the municipality’s collective mind why cars and motorbikes keep driving through, especially since there’s a speed camera that captures them in the act. To find out what’s up with that, they’ve called upon university students to document people’s behaviour. To soften the barrage of fines being issued, the municipality has agreed to turn off the speed camera half of the day, although at random.
(Link: www.waarmaarraar.nl, photo by Heiloo Online, some rights reserved)
Tags: Ede, speed camera, tunnel, tunnels
Recently the Dutch Road Transport Directorate (RDW) has made some information about car registration accessible as open data, which means you can have a look at types of cars, license plates and even car colour.
In 2013 black, grey and white cars accounted for 80% of all cars sold. In Munich, Germany I was once told that most cars, besides being German brands like BMW, Audi, Mercedes and Volkswagen are usually dark blue, black or grey. The only exception would be Porsche as it is more high end, and then red, orange and yellow come into the mix.
The reason for the drab colours according to no statistics whatsoever and a decent amount of beer was that ‘neutral’ colours are easier to sell second hand than red, yellow and green cars. And when I think of a red car, I picture a Ferrari and if I think Lamborghini I picture a bright yellow car. I’ve seen a dark blue Ferrari and a grey Lamborghini and not only are they both boring, but they actually seem less expensive.
I heard a few times that pink cars get stolen more often as do red and white Opel Kadetts, which practically had their own column in Nijmegen’s regional paper De Gelderlander when I used to live out there.
(Link: sargasso.nl, Photo of Coen Tunnel by Erik Tjallinks, some rights reserved)
Tags: BMW, Ferrari, Lamborghini, Mercedes, Nijmegen, Opel, Porsche, Volkswagen
Two artists from Eindhoven, photographer Nick Bookelaar and designer Yoni Lefévre, teamed up to create Grey Power, a photo series in which grandparents act out scenes thought up by their grandchildren.
The children made drawings of their grandparents going about their daily activities. Props and outfits from the drawings were then transplanted to real life and used for a photographic portrait of the grandparents. Lefévre explains that modern society considers old people to be sidelined, but “children do not regard their grandparents as grey and withered, but as active human beings who add colour to their lives”.
A Petapixel commenter pointed out that Korean photographer Yendoo Jung had a similar project called Wonderland five years ago, although Jung’s intention seems to be almost the opposite of that of the two Dutch artists. Instead of viewing reality from a different perspective his aim seems to be to recreate fantasy worlds.
Tags: children, elderly, grandchildren, grandparents, Nick Bookelaar, Yoni Lefévre
At hetregentbijnanooit.nl (it almost never rains dot nl) avid cyclist Gerard Poels from Grave near Nijmegen keeps track of how many of his bicycle commutes get rained on.
In the past five years it rained during an average of 9.4% of Poels’ rides, each of which took 40 minutes each way. Poels counts every little shower even if it rains for just a few minutes. He claims it happens only 4 or 5 times each year that it rains during the entire ride. During those five years Poels rode his bike to and from work 1,482 times.
Poels set up his site to counter the excuse “I am not going to take the bike to work because it always rains [in the Netherlands]“.
Eamelje.net points out that Peter Siegmund of the Dutch meteorological office (KNMI) calculated the probability that you will get wet if you stay outdoors (PDF). If you stay outdoors for an hour in the Netherlands, there is a 12% chance that you will get rained on. If you stay out for four hours, that probability increases to about 25%, and you will have to stay out for at least a fortnight to be absolutely sure to get wet. Siegmund adds that fans of camping are most likely to stay dry in June. Even then the probability of rain during a single week is still 91%.
Tags: grave, rain, weather
According to the third edition of the EF English Proficiency Index the Dutch are the third best in the world in speaking English as a second language.
Language educators EF tested the skills of over five million English speakers in 60 countries. The number one and two spots were taken by the Swedes and the Norwegians.
The South Americans and Asians are catching up the fastest. In Europe the English of the French actually got worse. Their proficiency was rated ‘low’. The countries that improved their English skills the most since the previous edition of the index were Turkey, Kazakhstan and Hungary.
The illustration is a silly visual pun. The Dutch call this type of train a dubbeldekker.
Tags: language skills, languages, statistics
Archaeologists are claiming to have found the city of Rotterdam’s oldest city seal from 1351 on the site where the country’s biggest covered market is being built. The seal is made of beeswax and was discovered in a copper box. On the seal can be read “clavis sigilli de rotterdam”, or ‘key seal of Rotterdam’, and was used to seal the back of documents.
The seal is said to depict the Rotte river, while the vertical bar is a dam. However, in this modern day and age the ‘international sign of friendship’ (aka ‘the bird’ or ‘three-finger salute’) does come to mind more quickly than a river and a dam.
Back in 2011 we told you about the oldest graves of the Netherlands discovered in Rotterdam.
(Link: www.ad.nl, Photo: BOOR)
Tags: archaeology, Rotterdam