April 13, 2021

Zwolle liberator to get motorway named after him

Filed under: History by Orangemaster @ 4:38 pm

On this day in 1945, Léo Major, the French Canadian soldier who single-handedly freed freed Zwolle, Overijssel, will have a 3.5 kilometre large section of motorway 371 in Québec named after him, starting at the entrance of the Valcartier military base Northwest of Québec City, Québec, Canada.

Léo Major was given his first medal, the Distinguished Conduct Medal of the British Army, the only Canadian and one of only three soldiers in the British Commonwealth to ever receive the Distinguished Conduct Medal twice in separate wars. Major went on to pull some more great moves in the Korean War. His friend Wilfrid Arseneault was given a Bronze Lion posthumously in 1970 by Dutch Queen Juliana.

(Link: lapresse.ca, Photo: Wikipedia)

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July 19, 2018

Dutch police start using expandable batons

Filed under: General by Orangemaster @ 12:58 pm

The Dutch police are learning all about a the expandable or telescopic baton that has the ‘desired effect’, that the shorter, older ones didn’t have. The expandable baton is more modern and more effective, according to pilots carried out in Deventer and Zwolle. A lot of other police forces around the world use them as well.

The expandable baton is being phased in, just like with other weapons, and the cops need to be trained to use them properly. At the end of this year if all goes well, all Dutch cops will be sporting the new baton. Trainer Michael Huijs seen in the video below assures us that although this is a new weapon, the rules on how and when to use violence haven’t changed.

Check this Dutch video for how the Dutch police train their folks on using these new batons:

(Link: politie.nl, Photo of Expandable baton by Dmg ie, some rights reserved)

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July 15, 2018

Game console museum gets 200 new items

Filed under: Gaming,History,IT by Orangemaster @ 2:07 pm

According to Bright.nl, the Bonami game console museum in Zwolle has received 200 items in one go for its collection, the biggest extension in the museum’s history. The items are said to be from the 1980s or earlier. All I can think about now is my very first Atari Super Pong for the mid 1970s.

The museum, started by Naomi and John Groenewold, also showcases many Philips products, such as the mini-cassette and the Philips ADM-3A, one of the first video display terminals used to operate a computer without a display.

There are many Dutch games, computers that use punch cards and newer items with VR, which means there’s something for everyone. And yes, you can apparently try out all kinds of games.

(Link: bright.nl)

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July 6, 2018

The French Canadian soldier who freed Zwolle

Filed under: History by Orangemaster @ 2:40 pm

At lunch, before stepping into a plane back to the Netherlands from Canada, I was told about the story of Léo Major, a French Canadian soldier of the Royal 22nd Regiment of the Canadian Armed Forces who single-handedly freed the Dutch city of Zwolle, and other places, with some unbelievable tactics.

Léo Major of Longueuil, Québec was a corporal who refused to move up in rank despite his brilliant moves. He pulled off stuff without consulting his superiors and made bluffs work that nobody else would have come up with. He pretty much freelanced and the army just let him because he was brave and smart.

During WWII, Zwolle, Overijssel was surrounded by German troops and the 22nd Regiment that was trying to recapture it were failing miserably, losing dozens of soldiers every day. Léo Major and his best friend Wilfrid Arseneault volunteered to go and find out where the Germans were positioned to try and improve their situation.

At nightfall the pair went to the farm of the Van Gerner family who tried to explain in Dutch that the forest was full of Germans. Shortly after, Arseneault was shot, his stomach full of bullet holes, as explained by Major himself in the video below. Major, determined to complete the mission left his best friend behind and pressed on.

Major entered Zwolle and attacked German patrols and ran through the streets throwing grenades to convince the enemy that Canadian troops were marching in, and it worked. He captured entire troops of 8-10 Germans who let themselves be delivered to the 22nd Regiment outside the city, believing the city was under attack. Major kept going back to Zwolle to pull the same tactic over and over. He even set fire to Gestapo headquarters.

At dawn, he realised that the last German troops had left the city and that Zwolle was free. After making sure the city knew they were liberated, Major went to pick up the corpse of his friend that he brought to the Van Gerner farm for safe keeping until the burial. Later that morning, Canadian troops marched into the city and the residents of Zwolle finally saw that they were liberated.

Léo Major was given his first medal, the Distinguished Conduct Medal of the British Army, the only Canadian and one of only three soldiers in the British Commonwealth to ever receive the Distinguished Conduct Medal twice in separate wars. Major went on to pull some more great moves in the Korean War. His friend Wilfrid Arseneault was given a Bronze Lion posthumously in 1970 by Queen Juliana.

This YouTube video features Léo Major himself in English on Zwolle television, with parts translated into Dutch.

(Photos: Wikipedia)

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July 5, 2017

Making 3D dishes and food for the elderly

Filed under: Food & Drink by Orangemaster @ 2:44 pm

Chef Jan Smink of top Dutch restaurant De Librije in Zwolle, Overijssel talks about the possibilities of making 3D printed dishes in the video below, where he shows us a creation made from celeriac and hazelnut paste with mushrooms, fermented garlic and more celeriac.

Smink segues into explaining that in Dutch retirement homes where 8% of the elderly have problems swallowing food, 3D printing could be useful for making their lives easier. It means they wouldn’t have to have their food blended to be eaten through a straw, which takes away from the social aspect of eating. Imagine making things like white asparagus puree, printing it out and eating with everyone else. That can be done since a 3D printer can make one-off orders, something a factory cannot easily do.

Of course, with a restaurant like Michelin-starred De Librije, not everything should be printed out, but it’s nice to hear from a chef that even people who don’t frequent his establishment could benefit from 3D printing.

Last year we told you about a 3D printer for pancakes at a restaurant in Ruurlo, Gelderland.

(Link: bright.nl)

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December 5, 2016

Amsterdam will get a baby hatch in 2017

Filed under: Health by Orangemaster @ 8:17 pm

We had a modern era baby hatch open up in Dordrecht back in 2013 and after that a few more opened up around the country, but now it’s the capital’s turn to have one, set to open in 2017.

Earlier this year Zwolle got a baby hatch in the Isala hospital, the first time a Dutch hospital has opened such a service.

It’s illegal to abandon a child as a foundling in the Netherlands, and can land someone four years of prison or a hefty fine of 20,000 euro. Making it punishable does mean babies are found in places like bins, the streets or a forest, some alive, but some dead as well. In 2014 a live baby was found in a container in Amsterdam whose parents were never traced, and a dead baby was found near Sloterplas in Nieuw-West in a sports bag not too long ago.

Child Protection Services in the past claimed that children have the right to know who their parents are. The government has no plans to close down, stop or pursue anyone who would abandon a baby in a baby hatch, so the government is still doing what it does best, which is nothing.

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November 24, 2012

Murals by Booyabase in Zwolle

Filed under: Art by Branko Collin @ 12:16 am

Painters Remko Koopman and Tamme de Boer, who cooperate under the name Booyabase, painted murals on four walls of a bridge in Zwolle in 2008, and last week they started on two new walls.

Trendbeheer’s Niels Post went to take a look and a lot of photos. He’s even got a couple of pics of the work in progress, even though that work in progress was halted due to “leaking porous asphalt”.

(Photo by Trendbeheer/NP, some rights reserved)

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December 16, 2011

Lorrainville, an album that started with a game on Facebook

Filed under: Dutch first,Music,Online by Orangemaster @ 11:05 am

You had to pick a random article from Wikipedia, a random quote off the Internet and a random picture from Flickr and turn it into an album cover. Here’s the one that literally struck a chord with Dutch producer from Zwolle, Guido Aalbers. He got a whole group of musicians together to write songs and perform live, including singer Anneke van Giersbergen and guitarist Erik Neimeijer just for this one-off project. Last night they played their one and only sold out gig at the Hedon in Zwolle, which I was lucky enough to attend. The room was so full that the doors of the concert hall were left open and the audience spilled into the bar area! The whole show was streamed live on Facebook as well.

Listen to Lorrainville – You may never know what happiness is. (This link may not be up for too long, so go and listen now).

All the songs are in English and have a touch of Americana. English-language coach to the Dutch stars Buffi Duberman asked me if I could help her get some sort of letter of recognition from the wee village of Lorrainville (pop. 560) in Québec and we managed to get the Québec Delegation in Brussels to write up a formal letter in Dutch to recognize this unique album, which was given to Guido Aalbers during the show.

If you Google Lorrainville today, you’ll get the album before the actual village! Read all about Lorrainville.

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September 30, 2011

Wordfeud outlawed in bar in Zwolle

Filed under: Food & Drink,Gaming by Branko Collin @ 3:23 pm

Owner Elles Hetebrij of the Hete Brij pub in Zwolle has had it with anti-social behaviour from mobile gamers, and has banned the Scrabble like word game Wordfeud from her establishment, De Stentor reports.

Sometimes the bar is filled with people playing Wordfeud. Nobody is talking to each other or to the bartender any more, much to his chagrin. […] We talk to our patrons about their behaviour. If you want to be on an ‘island’, you might as well play at home. This is a brown café where the atmosphere needs to be lively.

Manager Patrick Hugen added:

People even interrupt their game of darts to enter a word. This has to stop.

Wordfeud is a game that’s played on a mobile phone against Internet opponents. Is it really that addictive? I find that hard to believe. What do you think?

(Illustration: Wordfeud screenshot)

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August 28, 2010

Police harass man with dozens of parking tickets

Filed under: Automobiles by Branko Collin @ 9:43 pm

‘Klaas’ from Zwolle does everything right. His car has a handicapped parking card clearly visible under the window, valid and dated, and yet the police keep ticketing him for illegal parking in the lot in front of his house. Since April of this year he has received over 40 parking tickets with a combined worth of nearly 3,000 euro.

Rather than paying his tickets, he has decided to stick it to the man. He has been decorating his car with the tickets, and with drawings, post cards and a real pirate flag.

In an interview with newspaper De Stentor the man who wishes to remain anonymous—even though everybody in Zwolle probably knows who he is by now—explains how it all started: “The first guy who ticketed me treated me like a little dog. That’s when I turned my back on him. Since then the big boys have been coming over here daily to book me.”

“I own more than one car. As somebody confined to a wheel chair I like things on wheels. […] I will have every ticket contested in court, one by one. That way the city will have to pay tons of court costs.”

The city of Zwolle responded to the newspaper, but considering they would have towed his car away after the third or so ticket if they actually were in the right, I don’t think printing their answer here is going to tell you much.

(Photo: Zaltbommel.nl)

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