A 39-year-old man from Winterswijk, Gelderland who was recently caught with 260 kilos of heavy fireworks, including illegal Super Cobra 6 flashing firecrackers in his shed, attic and kitchen, will have his home closed between 14 December through 3 January, putting him and his family out for the holidays. The police claimed on Twitter that had those fireworks exploded, they would have destroyed homes and more within a 400-metre radius.
Usually set off for New Year’s Eve, this year fireworks will not be allowed and therefore be illegal throughout the Netherlands. Businesses often selling fireworks as a source of extra income will not be able to sell any this year, and found out only after they’d already bought their yearly stock. That stock has to either be stored in specific storage spaces or businesses have to pay to have it destroyed – either way they will lose a lot of money.
Of course this also upsets many individuals who bought fireworks because they will be fined if they use them, which is already happening and even a source of police trouble in Urk, Flevoland where teens are throwing heavy fireworks at the police.
‘Flappie’, the song about a Christmas rabbit written and sung by Dutch comedian Youp van ‘t Hek, a celebrity who has coined many catch phrases, has recently been covered by major American music figure Todd Rundgren who apparently likes to cover ‘obscure’ songs.
‘Flappie’, has become ‘Floppy’, which is a great name for a rabbit in English. I have not been able to find out the translator is as they’ve done a fine job, even according to Van ‘t Hek. Rundgren, who has performed in the Netherlands countless times according to music magazine Oor, is said to have made his version more dramatic than the original. One online criticism was that the new song was musically too busy, but I think it matches the story.
All I want is to know who the translator is to admire their work since translators are too often ignored.
Here’s the English version by Todd Rundgren:
Here’s a nice live version of original Dutch by Youp van ‘t Hek:
We’ve been busy this year to the point of having a tough time posting this fall, but we should be back on top of things for 2020. It is Christmas day as I write this, and the plan is to eat Italian food, drink, listen to Christmas music and play with the little houses above, courtesy of a supermarket chain that has been handing them out.
Although many people complained about the plastic, after work on December 24 I was handed an entire box of these houses (the special offer was over) and could not resist taking as many home as I could. I decided to make a traditional Dutch winter scene for you, complete with an ‘oliebollen’ stand, a food usually eaten on New Year’s Eve, and ‘koek en zopie’, cake and a hot beverage with alcohol usually enjoyed after ice skating. It’s not winter at all here in Amsterdam, it’s 9 degrees!
As always, co-blogger Branko is working on his list of favourite stories of 2019, which should be online before the year is out.
Thanks to everyone for reading us and sharing the weird and fun news of 24oranges, and Happy Holidays!
First, the Dutch celebrate Sinterklaas, then after that’s done and dusted on December 6th, you can put up your Christmas decorations, but not before that, at least not in a fake letter from the city of Tilburg, North Brabant doing the rounds.
People who decorated the outside of their house were fake fined 132 euro for doing so before Sinterklaas. For anyone from North America, it would be like being fined for wearing white after Labour Day, an old school urban myth possibly drummed up by the fashion police.
Speaking of fake things for the holidays, let us remind you that today is Saint Pancake, a tradition that started from a Dutch comic strip.
Forty-four undergraduate students were asked to listen to white noise and instructed to press a button when they believed hearing a recording of Bing Crosby’s White Christmas without this record actually being presented. Fourteen participants (32%) pressed the button at least once…. hallucinatory reports obtained during the White Christmas test [might] reflect a non-specific preference for odd items rather than schizophrenia-like, internal experiences.
In my neck of the woods, we used to sing “I’m dreaming of a white Christmas, and all the cars stuck in the snow.” And in case you’ve never heard this great Christmas classic, here it is.
24oranges is going to take a breather for a few days to catch up on some much needed sleep, finally make that video we promised in March (it’s bad juju if we don’t get it done in 2017), eat, drink and watch comedy on the telly.
Branko will again have a Top 10 list of this year’s favourite stories before the end of the year.
Happy Holidays to all you and thanks for your continued support!
An article in the Dutch biology research journal Deinsea, an annual publication of the Natural History Museum of Rotterdam, based on a study published in 2012 in the same journal, discusses the physiology of ‘Why Rudolph’s Nose is Red’.
The new study, entitled ‘Rudolph the red nosed reindeer had a very bioluminescent nose. A reply to Van der Hoven et al. 2012’ by Neil Crooks, Claire E. Marriott, Hannah R. Clifforth, Zain A. Ahmed, Arnold Xhikola, Samuel G. Penny, and Angelo P. Pernetta at the University of Brighton, UK, explain:
“Research published in Deinsea by Van der Hoven et al. (2012) identifies the cause of Rudolph’s infamous red nose to be the consequence of hyperemia of the nasal mucosa induced by the exertion of pulling a heavy load […] due to the excessive stresses endured whilst flying with Santa Claus and the sleigh in tow resulted in cerebral and bodily hyperthermia, overworking the nasal cooling system, causing the nose to glow. Whilst we recognise van der Hoven et al.’s (2012) central tenet of highly vascularized nasal mucosa in reindeer (Rangifer tarandus) helping regulate nasal heat exchange, we concluded that this is unlikely to be the causal factor of Rudolph’s particularly iridescent appendage for multiple reasons (PDF).”