Good news for Canadians, Canada was voted as the place with the best reputation worldwide for the third year in a row! It is important to note that only G8 countries voted. As a Canadian (writing this on Canada Day while in Belgium) I feel very conflicted about this news.
There’s obvious happiness that this is the public perception but it worries me because our treasured health care is suffering, we’re still not very progressive in our stance towards the First Nation population and please don’t get me started on the Kyoto Accord or linguistic issues.
My greatest fear is that these results are going to be used as a type of shield by those perpetuating these trends as a way to avoid dealing with the issues. I’m not going to harp(er) on it as today is supposed to be a day of celebration. Instead I will raise a glass (ou deux) in honour of the fact that people don’t really know us well enough to despise us (and yes, despite beliefs to the contrary, Canadians do share some cultural commonalities, deprecation being one of them).
Image courtesy of http://vinteeage.com/
Forget that horsesh*t about traveling to gain new experiences and expand your horizons. Most of us travel because we secretly believe that our country of origin is vastly superior to whatever far flung destination we are gracing with our presence and we want everyone else to know it too.
The Linguistic Divide
Contrary to popular belief, locals do not appreciate it when visitors take time to learn a few snippets of their language. The fact that they can mock you without your understanding is what makes you such a welcome guest. Besides, language is only a barrier for those who don’t speak loud enough. If at first you don’t succeed, try yelling and possibly even getting angry to demonstrate your impatience.
Act the Part
Travel only changes the outlook of those who are unsure of their convictions. As a tourist, you are bringing money into the economy and this pretty much enables you to act however you please. Demand forks and ask for ketchup with everything. Throw money (literally) at those less fortunate, slow moving locals in order to get what you want.
Haggling as Death Match
Let’s face it; the locals only want to rip you off. If they’re not going to clearly communicate their prices then they have just declared a throwdown. So what if it’s only two cents in your currency and it took you 20 minutes to reach that price, you won!
Look around – everything is SO foreign. It’s as if this has all been staged as a chapter in your personal memoir. Life is your art project and you should treat it as such. Block busy walkways as you repeatedly take identical photos in search of the perfect shot. Stick your camera in the faces and homes of locals and click away; asking permission would spoil the shot. Thank you universe!
Be a Cultural Ambassador
Many locals will never get to travel, so treat this as a valuable opportunity to show those less fortunate how to improve. Suggestions include, constantly reminding others that things are much bigger and better in your country, followed by lengthy explanations of why this is so. Sometimes you will need to engage in tough love and actually point out how disgusting and foreign their practices are, particularly in terms of toilets (Surely it’s much more sanitary that human waste is located within your home rather than outdoors and of course it is more hygienic to clean with paper than actual water).
Don’t worry about wasting your hard earned funds on a return ticket. Apply the suggestions above and chances are you will get a free ticket home when your many new friends take up a collection to return you to your beloved home ASAP.
Published under the title Make Yourself Unforgettable in the June 2013 edition of The Voice.
- Tim Hecker & Daniel Lopatin + The Germans play a double bill at STUK at 830pm. €12-€16.
- Radio Scorpio has Lazy Sunday at OPEK from 2-6 and it’s free every Sunday.
- STUK has Jazz on Sunday, a free weekly event starting at 9pm.
- Radio Scorpio has CULT at OPEK which runs from 8-10 and is free every Monday.
- Atomic Road Kings play a show at The Blue Cat at 9pm. Free.
- Discotheque Tropicale at Sojo’s. 9:00 pm – 6:00 am
- There’s an 80s night at The Orient. depending on the musical selection, this could be hell or bliss!
- It’s open mic night at Het Depot. Free.
- Hijaz plays Arabian jazz at OPEK at 9pm as part of Colora Festival. Free.
- It’s Birthday Friday at Rodin’s.
The Get Out of Town Gig of the Week
- Jon Spencer Blues Explosion
- 730pm: €23
- Trix: Noordersingel 28-30 Antwerp (Borgerhout)
- 27th April
- An electronic music festival in Herentals
- 27th – 28th April
- A rock music festival in Meerhout
Zythos Beer Festival
- 27th – 28th April
- A beer festival in Brabanthal
- 28th April
- Blues festival in Groensbeek, NL
- http://www.bluesmoosefest.com (Dutch only)
Red Rock Festival
- 1st May
- Free festival in Brugge
Roots & Roses Festival
- 1st May
- Roots festival in Lessine
Moulin Blues Festival
- 3rd-4th May
- Blues festival in Ospel, NL
- http://moulinblues.nl (Dutch only)
- The 1933 version of King Kong plays Sunday and Monday.
- The Maltese Falcon, the Humphrey Bogart film from 1941 plays Wednesday.
- Il Castello continues. It’s a 2011 documentary about a bureaucratic airport.
- 2012 film Foxfire: Confessions of a Girl Gang continues. It’s inspired by the Joyce Carol Oates book about four high-school girls that form a feminist gang in the 1950s.
- Hyde Park on Hudson continues. It’s a British film starring Bill Murray who plays Franklin D Roosevelt.
http://www.cinemazed.be/schema/index.asp (Dutch only)
- sadly, once again, comes from Saudi Arabia
- 3 Emirati men from the UAE have been deported from Saudi Arabia
- The men were visiting neighbouring Saudi Arabia from the United Arab Emirates to attend an annual Cultural festival in Riyadh.
- The men were apparently minding their own business when Saudi Arabia’s religious police entered the pavilion and forcibly removed them from the festival.
- Their reason? According to the Arabic-language newspaper Elaph. the Commission [for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice] members had some concerns.
- Apparently the men in question were extremely handsome and it was feared that women would find them irresistible.
- This seems to be a legitimate story as it has been reported by several reputable sources.
- Unfortunately pictures of the handsome men were unavailable.
- I suppose it might be dangerous to take a photo…..
Hoppin Around Vorselaar
- Saturday 6 April
- Vorselaar, BE
- Friday 12 April – Saturday 13 April
- Moers, Germany
Good Rockin Tonight
- Thursday 25 April – Sunday 28 April
- Attignat, France
Roots & Roses
- Wednesday 1 May
- Lessine, BE
- Friday 3 May
- Rumst, BE
The Baboons 10 Year Anniversary
- Saturday 18 May
- Turnhout, BE
City Rockers Festival
- Saturday 18 May
- Ciney, BE
- Friday 24 May
- Rotterdam, NL
- Saturday 25 May
- Oostmalle, BE
- http://www.popinmalle.be (Dutch only)
- Friday 24 May – Sunday 26 May
- Hertfordshire, UK
- Monday 3 June – Sunday 9 June
- Calella, Spain
- Friday 14 June – Sunday 16 June
- Waardamme, Belgium
- Thursday 13 June – Monday 17 June
- Heathfield, UK
- Saturday 1 July – Sunday 2 July
- Oud Turnhout, BE
- http://www.goezot.be (English link not working)
- Friday 5 July – Sunday 7 July
- Gierle, BE
Antwerp Vintage Reunion
- Saturday 20 July
- Wommelgem, BE
- site unavailable
Rock n Roll Meeting
- Saturday 27 July
- Eindhoven, NL
- site unavailable
- Friday 9 August – Sunday 11 August
- De Mortel, NL
Rockin at the Drive In Barn
- Friday 16 August – Sunday 18 August
- Schijndel, NL
- Wednesday 4 September – Sunday8 September
- Calafell, Spain
- Thursday 31 October – Saturday 2 November
- Benidorm, Spain
I absolutely love this charming short film! It’s about a Chinese man who learns Irish and moves to Dublin, only to realise that most of the population can’t understand him.
- A third patient in Britain has contracted a new SARS-like virus, becoming the second confirmed British case in a week
- Sadly, one person died in the UK yesterday as a result of the virus
- The Corona virus was identified by the World Health Organisation in September 2012
- The first documented case was a Qatari male who had recently visited Saudi Arabia.
- So far, 11 people have contracted the virus and 6 have died
- Most of the infected lived or had recently visited the Middle East
- The WHO has stated there is currently no need for travel restrictions or special screening
- A survey completed by Hamburg-based Jet Airliner Crash Data Evaluation Centre (JACDEC) found that flying was less deadly in 2012 than in any year since 1945
- However, that does not mean all airlines are equally safe.
- JACDEC examined 60 of the world’s operators in terms of safety
- listed below are the10 safest and most dangerous airlines
1. Finnair 51. SkyWest Airlines (US)
2. Air New Zealand 52. South African Airways
3. Cathay Pacific (Hong Kong) 53. Thai Airways International
4. Emirates (UAE) 54. Turkish Airlines
5. Etihad (UAE) 55. Saudi Airlines
6. EVA Air (Taiwan) 56. Korean Air
7. TAP (Portugal) 57. GOL Transportes Aéreos (Brazil)
8. Hainan Airlines (China) 58. Air India
9. Virgin Australia 59. TAM Airlines (Brazil)
10. British Airways 60. China Airlines