Skiermûntseach, Fryslân

What a bizarre little place. No cars, electric buses, and masses of bicyclists heading back and forth from the dunes to the town.

I had expected the strandpaviljoen to be open but was proven wrong. It has, an abandoned feel in this photograph.

Tonight I sat outside, at a table in the Hotel van der Werff, where I am presently lodging, and ordered a beer and an oude jenever.

I had only got halfway through the jenever when some old codger wandered by and remarked, Dat is en kopstootje.

His wife looked at the jenever and beer on my table and replied, Nou, dat is echt en ouwemanse drankje, hoor.

New site theme: Editor

No-one can read this post, or indeed the rest of this website, at the moment, but that’s because I’ve done some rearranging of the site and its contents.

First off, I’ve disabled WordPress Multisite (which had allowed me to host three blogs on the current domain) and merged and reposted most of the content which was replicated across the main, DDN Books and DNRC Records sites.

I’ve also, therefore, republished virtually everything that was previously in draft form. There’s obviously much more work to be done cleaning up old posts (as ever) but posting everything makes it much easier to spot the posts that still contain old shortcodes or HTML formatting.

Second, I’ve installed MediaWiki and have managed to get the [d/dn] wiki up and running. Much more on this exciting development shortly.

Third, to celebrate, I’ve switched over to the wonderful Editor WordPress theme … now, to write a new post or two.

Preoccupations: ‘Disarray’

On 27 May 2009 I watched a Calgary band called Women (actually four young guys) wipe the floor with an Atlanta band called Deerhunter (same) at Paradiso in Amsterdam. At the time, I was particularly struck by the energy with which Women’s drummer, Mike Wallace, attacked his task, and the band were clearly having a good night.

Women broke up in October 2010, reportedly after an onstage fight between brothers Matt (vocals, bass) and Patrick (vocals, guitar) Flegel. On 21 February 2012, Women’s guitarist, Chris Riemer, passed away in his sleep. Matt Flegel and Mike Wallace then formed the nucleus of a new band, the perhaps unfortunately named Viet Cong (also guys, none of them Vietnamese), who sounded pretty similar to Women, although with maybe a little extra edge.

Then Viet Cong rebranded themselves as Preoccupations and began pursuing a musical trajectory that I was looking forward to appreciating when, as if to prove to myself that I too still had that indie ‘edge’, I booked a ticket to see the band play live at the legendary Horseshoe Tavern in Toronto in April 2018.

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Toxic Gulf

years since the gap first appeared between 
the teeth of a little girl picking raspberries 
from her mother's hand by the poisoned stream 

a toxic tale of porcelain has traced its tiny 
fingers round the lines on contour maps (& their 
bedroom walls they stick our portraits & sit up 

for haircuts while you look for lice (quivering 
blue & the stream's ghastly handwriting etching
metallic notes each time it rains the flow oh-so 

milky-white like a daughter's teeth it's nothing 
or a politician's grin there's nothing to be done 
we can't vote (can't even see the lead lies prone

at the bottom of the gulf between where we end 
& everybody else's first-world problems begin