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Welcome to Affordable-hedgehogs.co.uk, home of Sanity

Sanity in actionThese are the AFPages of Sanity, AKA Michel Klijmij. Thanks to AFP, I have once again started to maintain a personal homepage. For those who don't know: AFP (alt.fan.pratchett) is a newsgroup inhabited by fans of Terry Pratchett, author of the Discworld books. More about AFP can be found under Usenet.

For about me, go to the About me section. Although IANAG, I do have some geekish toys that I like to show off in the Geektoys section. Some afpers have even met me IRL, and report(ish) stuff including photos can be found under AFPMeets. Under this bit you can see what I'm listening to (or, my brother when he's hijacked the PC), and some recent changes to this site. And, lest you forget, there's still stuff about James Inna Dress.

Sanity is feeling The current mood of michel@klijmij.net at www.imood.com and the internet is currently The current mood of the Internet at www.imood.com

Recent changes, additions and news

Sunday, July 20, 2003

[F] GoudaRadioMeet Report

As posted to a.f.p.

Well, after hours of meeting, being the organiser and presenting onna radio, I feel tired yet content and happy.

It was the second GoudaMeet ever,sugar bowl tickets with the usual suspects in random order:
Sanity, organiser and local resident of the People's Republic of Gouda
Astrid, SO of Sanity and since this March also a local resident
David, newbie and local resident, and at the same time the only furriner
Olaf & Sindy, locals but not of Gouda
Patrick, definitely the loudest snorer
Leo, without navigation system this time because he figured out how close Delft and Gouda actually are.
Arwen, heavily backpacked
Eelco, Biker from Brabant

So, alltogether, 9 people. This made organising quite easy, as everybody was at the train station at 17.30 so we could set out towards the cafe (after the usual moneymachine visits). Eelco had by then already suffered an overload of touristic information during find websites on ip the walk from the Sanity Penthouse to the station. In the station, the first person we met was David, cleverly hiding away from the bunch of afpers hanging around the other exit. But instant recognition, and a warm welcome for this very new newbie. He had stumbled upon a.f.p.lion king tickets thanks to last year's GoudaMeet report, found out there was going to be one and decided to come - a wise decision, many of you readers will think now. And you're right, you know.

The meet then set out southwards, towards the historical city centre of Gouda, chatting away while occasionally being interrupted by more touristic information about our beautiful city[1]. Usefull information, too: "This crossing is the book of mormon tickets most dangerous in Gouda, it has the highest death rate". After that, we progressed through the hysterical part of Gouda where the organiser and local tried to explain why shops weren't allowed to put their own rubbish bins out despite the clearly overfull PRoG Official Government Rubbish Bins not providing enough waste-storage. And why a tree should be chopped after it was already expensively moved a few metres and which almost all local would like to stay[2].

Impressed by the abilities of our PRoG Government, the meeting crowd was shuffled into Grand Cafe Central (est. 1916). Last year's experiment with the Finn MacCool (a bit further on the Market Square[3]) was considered suboptimal, with staff that got wayback machine alternative confused when people went in and out, and little room for a group inside. So now it was Central's opportunity to show their worth to the afp-community, and they did well. David, speaking English, was quickly given the English touristy menu, while the rest was pointed out the Dish of the Day.

Waiting for drinks people quickly started talking again, on our side of the table in English and on the other side in Dutch, with Olaf being kind of stuck in the middle of the two miami seo languages. Topics around my side were, apart from of course Gouda and how David had ended up in it, and the difficulties getting a house or flat, DVDs, fish porn (it works! scientifically proven!), Australia and (just before dinner) throwing up.

Dinner was consumed with much enthousiasm and muffled eating noises, and generally considered good. Astrid got quite a large dish of vegetarian stuff, resulting in some jealous looks.

After dinner, and positive results from the scouts Leo and Arwen, the troupe moved outside to sit on the terrace[4], combined with seating arrangement reshuffling. This meant that the topic quickly came to the upcoming radio show and what my plans were. Telling them that it was 'all in my head' comforted them only just. Some ideas were exchanged and topics expanded, and all felt confident enough for the next day to change the subject to cats. Of course, at this point in time some geeky equipment was also found its way onto the tables.

After a pleasant evening the meet broke up. Olaf & Sindy and David went to their respective homes while Sanity led the crashers towards the worst neighbourhood of Gouda, where his home is, through the prettier route. Again, much touristic information was provided. At home, people were getting to know Felix, the resident cat, who immediately presumed that all these people must have come to feed him and started moving towards the kitchen. After a bit of talk and deciding on who would sleep where and which poor sod had to share a room with Patrick, everyone went to sleep. This went reasonably well, except that Felix was trying to get into Eelco's bed, mosquitos were trying to get into everyone (I'd forgotten to hand out newspapers) and in the morning Patrick woke everyone (except roommate Leo) up by not waking up but instead causing a minor earthquake by snoring extremely loud.

The next morning people got up, swore at the snorer, stoked the cat and then it was time to do the final preparations for the radio show. Leo and Patrick volunteered to be the Guests of Honour and also supplied music. Which meant in one case going through a huge MP3 CD, selecting the appropriate tracks and then burning them onto an Audio CD, something which needed the combined efforts of three Linux users (but mainly Leo - thanks!) fighting with X-CD-Roast, a crashing Knotify and in the end good cdrecord commandline knowledge.

The Radio Show went well, we didn't use a lot of music in the first hour because of enthousiastic talking and explaining about Terry Pratchett, the kind of books that he writes, the references and annotations, which books to start with, how we all got into Pratchett. The second hour gave the opportunity to play a bit more music, in between the talking about (pratchett/fantasy) fandom, CCDE, DWCon, and meets. While the music played we were receiving direct feedback from Arwen, who was following the show from behind the screens (and had a good time I presume, considering she stayed the whole show and wasn't forced to say something), which was immediately absorbed into the programme-making-proces. After the show, our listener (Astrid) called to say she enjoyed the programme. Our biggest fan however was located in the studio and helped keep the air below dangerous temperature and humidity.
The programma has been recorded, and will at some point be made available digitally - it's in dutch only though.

At the end, we could conclude that it had been a good meet, and that another radio programme (hopefully with even more people) is fun. Which is a Good Thing, so I'll keep everyone posted about that for next year (and ideas are welcome).

I would like to conclude with thanking all people that were there for coming, with special thanks to my co-producers Arwen, Patrick and Leo and of course David, who had a great night out and who we'll be seeing more of in the next meets.

Last but not least, the quotefile:

  Astrid: "I've got a tree in my placemat"
  Sanity: "That's quotable, isn't it?"
  Sindy:	"It is, and it's green"
  Leo:  "Every time I went to the toilet those ladies had
       their clothes *on*! [translated from dutch]
TTFN, Michel AKA Sanity
       [1] "Onze mooie stad Gouda", a phrase uttered several times in every
           speech of the last mayor of Gouda.
       [2] You want to know the reason? It costs the space of 3 market stalls.
           This while the rearranging of the Market Square[3] costed the space of
           20 stalls...
       [3] It's not square, but triangular.
       [4] I still am unsure whether that's a proper translation of 'terrasje'.
Friday, June 13, 2003

Announcing GoudaRadioMeet

This is an official announce for the Gouda Radio Meet.

There will be, like every year since I have been to meets, a meet organized by me in Gouda. This year, it will be a highly interactive meet. But first, the details:

Location : Gouda
Date : Saturday 19 and Sunday 20 July, 2003
Starting time: 17.30, Gouda train station

See also the note at the end: I need to know who's coming and for how long they'll stay.

The plans:
The meet will start normally. At 17.30 we will walk into town. I still have to go on a pub crawl to find out a pub where we can eat and stay without getting severe hearing damage, but I promise I will find that. It will not, however, be the same pub as last year.
In the beautiful historical setting of Gouda there will be an opportunity to drink, eat, chat, play games, or explain to the personnel what the difference is between a nerd and a geek.

After closing time, the remaining people will be directed towards the crashing space, which is my flat. There should be plenty space for everybody, but do inform me if you intend to crash so I can rearrange furniture and buy enough breakfast.
Things to take into account: it's a (+/-) 20-minute walk to my flat, and we own a cat who likes to snuggle up in the middle of the night. Just so you know. Separate sleeping areas for snores and snore-haters can be arranged. We have a balcony and double glass in the windows if separate rooms aren't enough :-)

On Sunday, the special part of the meet will happen. I have booked 2 hours of broadcasting time on the local radio station Gouwestad Radio. So from 3-5 we can do a Very Special Radio Programme about afp/fantasy/sf/pratchett/fandom.

The radio programma is optional. You can also choose to just watch, or make coffee. If you want to have a go at making radio (which is, I can say, a lot of fun), you're welcome. Being a local dutch radio station, the presenters will have to speak dutch. The choice of music (people are encouraged to bring in their own music) has to be suitable for a Sunday afternoon. That doesn't mean it has to be Sky Radio sound, but it does mean that Death Metal bands singing "die motherf****r die" in grunting voices are out of the question.
I also expect the people who will do the radio programme to actively help thinking up items to fill the show. All others are of course allowed to shout ideas, too.

The radio studio is located on the Markt square (triangle, actually), so close to the train station. If there is nice weather and enthousiasm, there might also be time to do some touristing in Gouda.

Please let me know asap whether you'll be able to come, and whether you want to make radio as well. The earlier I know, the better.

Friday, April 11, 2003
After a few 'netless weeks I'm back, shinier, brighter and whiter than ever before!

So, the flat has been redecorated and furnished, see below for the link.

And during all those activities, the US decided to invade Iraq despite world-wide protest and a lack of UN support. This war will make things worse than they were. It's not about the Iraqi people. They have gotten rid of the regime, but the US will put a new regime there that might be as bad as Saddam's. After all, Saddam got there through US (and European) support. Because this war isn't about the Iraqi people, it won't help the Iraqi people. If this war was about Weapons of Mass Destruction, then where are they? So far, the only chemical weapons used are the American bullets with Uranium.
Furthermore, it's impossible to get a clear view on what's happening due to the media manipulation. Al-Sayaf was so obviously wrong, it was funny. The coalition is a lot more cunning. We'll never know what really happened, and what the real cost of this war is.

Sunday, March 16, 2003
Okay, we signed the contract and are now busy redecorating the flat. The wallpaper was awfull, not only the style, but also to remove from the walls.

A full guided tour can be found here

Tuesday, March 04, 2003

It appears I'll be leaving parental house. Today, we received the official letter saying that we (Astrid & I) are now the number one candicate for a flat. Which is 5 minutes from here :-)

Excitement all over.

Thursday, February 20, 2003

Friday 14 Feb my main server went berzerk, maiming the filesystem. When reinstalling, which was the only option to restore it, it decided to ignore the USB card which is quite necessary for the modem. IOW, for quite a while, I was out of the air.

But I'm back, and so's most of my stuff, it seems. If there's anything missing, just shout and I'll restore from backups that I have.

Saturday, February 08, 2003
The Bedroom Shuffle....

I've changed positions of various things in my room, the updated room picture is here.

Monday, February 03, 2003
I've started to use blogger.com to add stuff here, so I wouldn't have to pico my index file every time.

I'll just see how this works...

More hurrah!
Our garden seen from my roomQuite a lot of snow...

I've got my driver's licence :-)

Leiden Videomeet in Eindhoven, 25 and 26 January 2003
It was a Good Meet (tm), read my Meet report and see the photos.

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Please welcome Zandbak
Since Sunday 3 November 2002, Zandbak is in place. Zandbak is a linux-based server which is running web and e-mail services for klijmij.net (my personal/family domain) and affordable-hedgehogs/prawns.co.uk. All problems are solved now. If you don't get access to the news server, or e-mails bounce, please inform me.

AFPChess Tournament
On a.f.p., I called for an e-mail chess opponent. Rather than one opponent, there's enough interest for a tournament. And you can join! See "Chess" for details, or mail me.

Update: all matches have been started. News submissions are still welcome, as we have a seat ready due to one of the players going abroad.
Match progresses are updated irregularly, mostly Sundays. The modification date is shown.

Prins Claus
Sunday 6 October, the husband of queen Beatrix has died. He was a very respectable and funny man. In 1998, he threw away his tie in public, which is why Patrick (Turtle) has suggested to not wear a tie on the day of the funeral (15 October). I fully support this tieless day. It's a much more appropriate way of showing respect to Claus than a flag halfway down.
More information

So I'm a pacifist
I'm getting rather worried by the situation about the USA desparate to invade Iraq. I think it's wrong to attack Iraq and attempt to overthow Saddam Hussein's regime. Despite him being evil, undemocratic and possibly dangerous, there are other ways of solving this.
On a.f.p. there was a discussion about great music, and one of the dutch afpers wondered about an English translation of "Welterusten meneer de president", sung by Boudewijn de Groot. I translated it like this. It is a protest song from 1966, but has been useable ever since. Unfortunately.

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