To all the unilingual English speakers who keep saying they can’t learn Dutch after years of being here, maybe you should take a page from these American kids: fake it until it sounds vaguely Dutch. Top tip: don’t be afraid of sounding or looking stupid, either. Half way through the video the guys get asked questions about the song, a bit like a Dutch exam, but with more adult content.
‘Drank & Drugs’ (‘Booze and Drugs’) by Lil Kleine & Ronnie Flex is going viral, and we’re joining in. The first guy can at least says something remotely Dutch on the beat, while the second guy can’t seem to get it right. OK, the ‘spaghetti’ bit is funny.
It’s not ‘impossible to translate’ as the link suggests, considering many words are Dutchified English words anyway, but booze, drugs and bitches (“if they are bitches,” says the first guy) is common fare, pardon the pun.
In the spirit of April’s Fool, Dutch creative agencies Venour of Rotterdam and cartoonist Kakhiel (held up in a secret lair) created Google Naps, a parody of Google Maps, although it does give excellent tips about where to crash outdoors. Just like the real Google tool, Google Naps allows users to plot out specific locations on interactive online maps.
Writing this in downtown Munich next to the beautiful Isar river and its big city parks, Google Naps is telling me the place I relaxed under the sun with friends and beers was a good place to get some sleep and I agree. However, everyone can put in a suggestion and so sleeping under a bridge may not be everyone’s cup of tea.
The creators also put in a Dunglish disclaimer just for Google’s founders, asking them to not get upset and not sue them because they don’t have any money. They then say, “whenever you are in the Netherlands you can have a nap on our couch if you want, just e-mail us: email@example.com. We can also make coffee and bake eggs if you like that (for a small price).”
As my co-blogger Branko who comes from asparagus country himself put it, “I don’t think we can abstain from writing about this Limburg promo”. And when it comes to gobbling up asparagus, why go for a soft sell, right? Enough puns from me, watch the video.
And if you thought white asparagus looked like a small Caucasian male, you’ll enjoy this banana version parody. In fact, the people who made the advert could be going for a cheap viral, as you don’t need any words to get this message across.
(Link: trendbeheer.com, Photo by Wikipedia user Janericloebe who released it into the public domain)
The Dutch extreme right-wing party, part of the elected coalition government, has set up a website where people can ‘denounce’ the violence, crimes and other bad things ‘allegedly’ done by Poles, Bulgarians, Romanians, and other Eastern Europeans. Never mind the obvious discriminatory nature of the site, it also does not allow anyone to elaborate on why they think that one Pole stole their job, just a radio button that says ‘yes’ or ‘no’, which is more unreliable that a teenager magazine quiz about your ex boyfriend.
My favourite which I read about on Twitter, is meldpuntwaardevollegezelligheid.nl (roughly, ‘good fun’), set up by Polish-born Dutch rapper Mr Polska who turned the site’s idea on its head to promote himself and partying with Eastern Europeans, an excellent marketing coup. Too bad his sexist view of women in his music is so underdeveloped, he almost provides ammo for the first site.
UPDATE: If anyone wants to read complaints about the Dutch, just pick an English-language expat site.
Miffy representative Mercis lost an old-fashioned game of bully-the-penniless-blogger yesterday when a web hosting provider who refused to lie down won most points of a copyright infringement lawsuit.
The hoster, Punt.nl of Gouda, argued that cartoons some of its users hosted in which Miffy is depicted doing cocaine or DJing at a party are parodies, and therefore protected by an exemption to copyright law. The court went along with that argument, and felt that since Miffy was depicted in the cartoons as engaging in activities Dick Bruna would never put her through, it should be abundantly clear to the reader that these are parodies. Using the same shaky logic, the court banned two cartoons that were too close to the original.
As Punt.nl’s Henri de Jong pointed out to De Volkskrant, “What the judge is really saying is the harder the better, because that way you put distance between the parody and the original.” Cory Doctorow argued something similar in his column for the Guardian earlier this year.
The text of the illustration goes:
Matt is at the party.
Dan is there too.
Matt is playing trance.
“What noise,” Dan yells,
And pushes Matt.
Dan throws a fat hardcore
Tune on the SL-1200.
Everybody is happy.
Matt is a dirty trance fag.
Several more Miffy parodies can be found in the verdict. According to De Volkskrant, Marja Kerkhof of Mercis denies the company is bullying bloggers.