August 11, 2016

Heineken pretends to care about people, gets caught out

Filed under: Sports by Orangemaster @ 9:47 pm

Heineken is seriously thinking about getting bars owners in Amsterdam to serve its beer with tap water on the side to promote ‘responsible drinking’ and bars owners are not thrilled at the idea.

For those who don’t know, a large proportion of bars around the country are stuck serving Heineken because that’s how they pay for their beer-tapping equipment and basically stay in business. Being shrewd in business is one thing, pretending to care is totally ridiculous and hypocritical. Isn’t the goal to sell as much beer as possible?

Normally I’d brush this off but ever since Dutch athlete Yuri van Gelder went from being ‘Lord of the Rings’ (his discipline) to ‘Lord of the Drink’ in the Dutch and international media this week for having consumed alcohol and being kicked out of the Olympics for it, it’s time to call Heineken out on their bullshit.

The Dutch have this party tent idea they set up at the Olympics and other major sporting events called the Heineken Holland House: a bigazz orange party tent for the athletes and their fans to have a drink and watch Dutch athletes perform on TV. After a Dutch athlete has a win, they often pop down to the HHH and let people applaud them and probably have a drink as well.

Heineken’s response to the incident was that they don’t sponsor, they only facilitate a place to party. Hello? The Dutch Twitterati published Heineken sponsorship contracts to make their point clear after which the beer giant admitted to not have expressed itself properly – no kidding.

And if that wasn’t stupid enough, beer competitor Grolsch started making puns on Heineken’s slogan “Heerlijk Helder Heineken’ (roughly ‘Delicious Clear Heineken’) using Van Gelder’s name: ‘Heerlijk Van Gelder Heineken’, which sounds similar. And look at how they drove the point home, suggesting Van Gelder drink 0% beer instead (picture).

Back in 2010 Van Gelder was dropped from the Dutch team for the Gymnastics World Championships after he admitted using cocaine. After cleaning up his act, surely training very hard like all athletes and now breaking the rules, he’s been sent home from Rio.

The way Heineken handled its position was lame and attempting to push water to go with your beer as some sort of responsible drinking is super lame.

Heineken, shut up or go home.


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July 12, 2012

Dutch masters theft solved after 13 years

Filed under: Art,Sports by Orangemaster @ 5:20 am

Five of the seven paintings stolen from an elderly woman in Bilthoven, Utrecht back in 1999 turned up at a Christie’s auction last Wednesday. The police were called in and they’ve arrested three suspects, two in the Netherlands and one in Germany, involved in drugs and, well, theft from little old ladies. The most famous painting of the lot is probably ‘Antonius en Cleopatra’ (‘Anthony and Cleopatra’) from 1677 by Jan Steen. The other paintings are from the late 16th and 17th century.

The two paintings still missing from the now deceased elderly woman are more recent paintings, namely Isaac Israëls’ ‘Café-interieur-restaurant’ (‘Cafe interior restaurant’) from the 20th century and Wouterius Verschuur’s ‘Paarden in Schuur’ (‘Horses in a stable’) from the 19th century.

At the time of the theft, the paintings were valued at what is now 1,3 million euro (three million guilders).

Nice tangent: at age 63, Isaac Israëls actually won a Gold Medal at the 1928 Olympic Games, which were held in Amsterdam, for his painting Red Rider, an art competition that was part of the games.

(Links:,, Photo of Jan Steen by Stifts- och landsbiblioteket i Skara’s photostream, some rights reserved)

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April 24, 2012

Dutch to cast monster bell for London Olympics

Filed under: General,Sports by Orangemaster @ 6:52 am

A huge 23 tonne bell, to be the largest in Europe, will be cast by Eijsbouts in Asten, North Brabant for the Olympic Games in London this summer. The British media is miffed because the contract was supposed to be handled by the British company Whitechapel, but they subcontracted it to Eijsbouts yesterday. The reason given was “the bell was sent overseas because it [Whitechapel] lacked the facilities to cast it here.” To me this reads as ‘we couldn’t do the job, but we wanted to score the contract’ and sounds weird because another British company, Taylor’s, claims it could have done the job in the UK. And part of the London 2012 specifications was insisting that the bell is cast in this country.

So why did the Dutch get the order? Enter complaints about losing work in Britain and about foreigners making the Brits look bad. Then again, the organisers are the same brilliant people who wanted to have The Who’s deceased drummer Keith Moon play at the opening ceremonies. He died way back in 1978. I can only deduce that subcontracting was cheaper, cheap enough to ignore specifications.

We know the bell could have been made in the UK by Taylor’s, the largest bell foundry in the world, but Eijsbouts is making it, a company that also claims to be the largest bell foundry in the world.


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March 16, 2011

Olympic tickets only for the Dutch, the rest use Visa

Filed under: Sports,Weird by Orangemaster @ 12:14 pm

The Volkskrant estimated that the Netherlands would be allocated some 100,000 tickets for the Olympic Games in London 2012, but apparently they are only up for grabs if you’re a card carrying Dutch person.

Non-Dutch Europeans in the Netherlands who want to buy tickets for the Olympic Games in London will have to pay by Visa card because the Dutch ticket allocation is only for Dutch nationals, the Volkskrant reports on Wednesday. The Dutch selling agent is only allowed to sell cards to Dutch nationals, and will charge them a 23.8% booking fee on top of the price of a ticket.

All ‘third party nationals’, a fancy term for non European, are obliged to buy tickets from the agents of their country.


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March 4, 2008

Dutchman bikes to Beijing for the Olympics

Filed under: Bicycles,Sports by Orangemaster @ 11:03 am

From the small town of Empel, Brabant all the way to Bejing, China some 12,000 kilometres down the road, 40-year-old Leo Janssen plans to bike his way to the Olympic Games in five months. His travels will take him through Germany, Poland, Ukraine, Russia, Kazakhstan and China. A huge fan of the Olympics, in 1992, Leo walked to the Olympics from Empel to Barcelona. In 1996, he simply flew to Atlanta (perfectly understandible), although in 2000 he tried to reach Sydney by bike. In 2004, he took it “one step further” by using a step bicycle to make it to Athenes and this year he’s using a recumbent bicycle.

(Video link:

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March 21, 2007

Olympic rowers offering job aboard boat

Filed under: General,Sports by Branko Collin @ 7:20 pm

Golly! This here digital revolution hasn’t passed by the Netherlands’ finest athletes. The Holland 8 (the Olympic rowing team) are looking for a new coxswain, and are using Monsterboard to help them in their search. (Via :)= Esc.)

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