My Severance Was A Bit Different

Alternative worst-title: Pseudo-Review of Severance, the tv show

Disclaimer: I‘m writing this pseudo-review after viewing the first two episodes only. No spoilers. So buckle-up buttercup.

Having recently purchased a new iPad Air 5, I‘m once again on the AppleTV+ rodeo–on account I get the service for three months for free. For. In case, dear worst-reader, you‘re not in the know. I don‘t dig subscription media services. For the most part, when it comes to consuming-to-survive media, I don’t mind paying as I go, which is why I prefer the Apple TV. Also. As with everything Apple, one has to be prudent with expenses just to be able to afford all this krapp, which means I do all I can to avoid paying stupid-money for AppleTV+. And so. Long live corporate monopolies and unregulated capitalism and forced obsoletism, etc. (Sarcasm off.) That said, here‘s a shortlist of what worst-moi and my better-half are currently subscribed to:

  • Netflix
    • As of the fall 2022 we‘re subscribed to the cheapest service rate, which I think is 7,-€; if Netflix pushes ads through this price-point we will be canceling.
  • Apple Music
    • Although I started this last summer on subscription I‘ve since changed it to the yearly 100,-€ flat rate, on account there‘s a bit of money to be saved. Still a subscription in my worst-book.
  • Amazon Prime – JUST CANCELLED
    • For the last few years we‘ve been subscribed to Prime. After Amazon‘s rate hike announcement I immediately cancelled it. Since we never really dug the movie offering and it‘s cheaper, we moved to Netflix. BTW, Amazon‘s Music service sucks. Will I miss Prime shipping? Now that‘s a good worst-question. I am gonna miss Star Trek Picard though!

With three months of free AppleTV+ there‘s quite a bit to catch up on. I’m looking forward to See, The Morning Show (season 2) and whatever else I missed since 2020, the last time I got this service for free. To start, my better-half and I watched the first two episodes of Severance last night. And get this. After the first few minutes of episode one I knew I was in for something good. With that in mind, to make things short-n-sweet, here the gist of everything I have to say about this show after only two episodes.

Gosh darnit I wish I had written that.

The thing is, dear worst-reader, I wrote a play called The Good Criminal. It was about not only corporate abuse but the willingness of corporate employees to play along with the $hitshow that is corporate #Americant. The way the first episode of Severance begins, with a lone woman laying on a corporate conference room table, being woken up by a conference room speaker, and the subsequent animosity she shows for her corporate situation, fit perfect into worst-writer‘s mindset of corporate Mise en scène. By the end of the second episode my better-half and I agreed that the writer (Dan Erikson) and director (Ben Stiller) have created a masterpiece of duality that spans exactly the same-differences between Orwell and Huxley. Bravo!

For those not in the know, here‘s worst-writer‘s short-take on the same-differences between Orwell vs Huxley. Orwell (1984) writes about coercive and violent authoritarianism. Huxley (Brave New World) is about authoritarian power recognizing there is no need for violence because coercion can be achieved through mental manipulation, which includes drugs, advertising, emotions, etc.

Although surely this tv show will steer in the direction of entertainment as I continue watching it, I‘m particularly interested in how its creators, satirically or not, maintain the same-differences that abound when depicting social and political issues in this worst-world. Will the show take me in the satirical direction of movies like Starship Troopers or Robocop? Or what about Don‘t Look Up, Network or Blazzing Saddles? And there‘s my all-time favorite socially critical film: Heaven‘s Gate. For, dear worst-reader, if you want to see a depiction of the origins of #Americant watch Heaven‘s Gate.

#Nomatter the direction Severance takes, my only hope is it doesn‘t stray with typical Hollywood appeasement. You know. Hollywood can only take social and political issues so far, which, IMHO, is why Heaven‘s Gate was such a colossal failure as it literally took down a movie studio. Then again, today‘s entertainment industry doesn‘t seem to be lacking in funding? Am I wrong. Anywho. As long as Severance remains steadfast and adheres to the premise that corporatism, in all its forms, is no different than fascism, totalitarianism and is in total opposition to human freedom and dignity, I‘ll keep watching it.

Or maybe not. Whatever.

Rant on.



Michelin Star In Cologne

Ten year anniversary dinner, dear worst-reader. Also, first time in two and half years (covid) we went out. Köln’s La Société has left me disappointed in the past. High-end catered food, I‘ve said. But not this time. Starting top right > left. Shrimp wraps, jelly wrapped goose liver, wolfsbarsh filet, baby calamari, venison filet and some kind of custard on a bed of sautéed fruit slices. Six course magic.

Rant (and eat) on.


Pseudo Review: iPad Air 5 2022

Alternative worst-title: Has worst-writer purchased his last Macintosh (laptop)?

One week later pseudo-review here.

Took a few years, dear worst-reader. You know. Took a few years before I came round. Round to what, you ask. Well. The biggest reason I never really liked iPads and barely tolerate iPhones is because of one piece of modern tech that bugs the bee-gee-bees out of me: touch screens. Having been swept away long ago with the Macintosh, a magnificent alternative to Windows, this not only makes me old school, it makes me a bit weary when it comes to big (tech) changes. The thing is, I dig keyboards and command line interfaces. And so. The biggest move I’ve made so far with distancing my worst-self from Apple‘s hideous and monopolistic product politics, that began with Macintosh, has been to embrace Linux. And so. I‘m digging ARM based SBCs. As you can see in the pic above, I have been sharing the right half of my work space with a tried & true RPi4 for going on a year, not to mention that all my music and video and file server needs in my little townhouse are fulfilled with other raspberry pi SBCs. But this worst-post ain‘t about my having seen the light. Or is it the dark? #Nomatter. Moving on.

For years now worst-writer has been a perturbed Apple fanboy. Whether dazed and confused about hardware, software or its baked-in product obsoletism, IMHO the company has taken the fun/thrill out of its stuff—other than unboxings, of course. Even though I know how technically powerful Macs and iPads are, there‘s something about what money grubbing monopolists do that just makes things… un-fun. And I have a lot of un-fun, boring Apple stuff, don‘t you know. So. The question for worst-moi for the past few years has been simple. Will my frustration with Apple make me give up on Apple?

Discovering the joys of worst-writing on a slate of glass that glows and talks and plays music/videos and connects to the world may have turned things upside down.

The thing that has sent me over the edge over the past few years is Apple‘s new Silicon. You know. The new CPU/GPU it supposedly developed to replace the burden of having to buy over-priced chips from Intel. I‘m probably a bit naive in making this assumption but hear me out for a worst-sec. Why is it, after developing completely new Silicon and thereby not having to pay Intel‘s monopoly chip prices, are Macs as expensive if not more expensive than ever before? Keep in mind, dear worst-reader, Apple Silicon is based on open-source chip architecture. The development and manufacture of chips is supposed to be a huge part of the cost of chips. Again. Perhaps I‘m not well enough informed but to worst-moi, at the least, anything with Apple Silicon should be substantially cheaper because a big chunk of chip development doesn‘t cost Apple a thing. Then again. We no longer live in times where capitalist innovation could/should benefit consumers. It’s all about the shareholders. Am I wrong. Moving on.

As usual, worst-writer is off subject. This worst-post is supposed to be about reviewing my latest Apple purchase which could have been a new Mac–cause I‘m due for a new one. So. Thank you for indulging me. Again. Moving on.

As mentioned above, I was never an iPad fan. I hate touch screens. But. My better-half has been using iPads for years. I can’t deny the fact that she’s also been very productive with her iPad. This has lead me to look over her shoulder once or thrice which then lead to a few YouTube videos and before I knew it, she hand-me-downed her second generation iPad Pro about a year and a half ago. At first, I only used the iPad to read the newz in the morning with coffee. I then started reading books on it–having long since giving up on Kindle and Amazon. Once I figured out how to browse the #Interwebnets with it I started to find myself casually reaching for it more and more instead of putting my 2017 MacBook (the twelve inch one) on my lap. Long worst-story short. This past summer, as my better-half and I began our vanlife, I became more and more hesitant to camp in remote places with an abundance of expensive tech krapp. I mean. It‘s bad enough that we have our iPhones, iPads, Apple Watch, etc. Even though our van has a lock-n-key safe in it, my MacBook does not fit in that safe. But I‘m rambling. The worst-thing is, the more I used that old, second generation iPad Pro, the more I dug it and only took it on our vanlife trips.

My aging iPad‘s battery has been at its end for a while now. It lasted under constant use for almost five years and that‘s more than I can say for my MacBook or any iPhone. I started to complain that I had to plug it in every hour after any significant use. Complaining enough meant that my better-half was also getting bored (of my complaining). Surprise. Surprise. She bought the new iPad Air 5th gen with the caveat it‘s my early Xmas present. Tickled to death as I waited for it to be delivered, and after informing her about all the research I’d done about which iPad I wanted, I made a plan to turn it into my daily driver. Yeah. Since last summer (2022) I am digging the iPad, touch screen n‘all. Who‘d a thunk it!

Will this new iPad Air replace my aging 2017 12“ MacBook? I mean. I had the MacBook battery replaced last summer. Because it has i5 processor and a 500GB HD, it‘s also, unlike the i3 MacBooks, still quite useful. In fact, unlike the i3 MacBook, mine runs MacOS Ventura. But that‘s all neither here nor there. The thing that blows my mind with my new iPad Air is how much faster it is at opening apps, browsing the #Interwebnets and multitasking. Of course, the question remains, as my daily driver, as I have to rely on it for all my computing needs, will the Air deliver? We‘ll worst-see. This worst-test is ongoing.

So. The question now is: what in worst-writer‘s computing world will replace my Mac laptop? Keep in worst-mind, dear worst-reader, I didn‘t say, by potentially giving up Macintosh for an iPad (iOS) that I‘m also giving up on using a laptop. I don‘t think that‘s the case. What I‘m really doing is searching for a path to reduce my dependency on Apple. That worst-said. If things go as planned, I may finally replace Macintosh for iOS for all my ecosystem needs but for my other computing needs, it‘s Linux all the way.

Ever heard of a Framework laptop?

Rant and review on.


Is That Your Real Hair Colour

A Pseudo Review of the movie: Blonde

Alternative worst-title: A time before Weinstein and Cosby & Co.

She died a few months before I was born. It took till the late 70s before I saw one of her movies–on a black & white TV. As the 80s came and went and worst-writer started taking down all those pin-up posters of scantly clad #Americant womanhood from my boyhood room, which may or mayn’t be because of Monroe’s iconic pin-up status that started with the first Playboy magazine cover, Monroe wasn’t all that titillating anymore. For one thing, she was long dead. For another thing, her sex-symbol image had been surpassed, if not suppressed by the likes of Farrah Fawcett, Cheryl Ladd, etc. For worst-moi, the myth of Marilyn Monroe started (at best) in the mid 80s when Madonna usurped her iconic platinum blonde bombshell image in the music video Material Girl. Does that mean Madonna should be accredited with the revival of Marilyn Monroe and all-things platinum blonde? Sure. Why not. What else could have revived her?

The thing is, dear worst-reader, I watched Blonde the other night on Netflix. And I can’t get it out of my head. My better-half quit the movie after the first rape scene, which is at about twenty minutes. She says she’s never gonna watch it. Although the scene made me stand up and turn away from the screen, I found my bearings a few minutes later due to Ana de Armas. In fact, she’s the only reason I stayed in the almost three hour $hitshow of peeling the onion that is/was nineteen fifties Hollywood, even though some of the scenes with Adrian Brody as Arthur Miller were pretty good. The thing is. This movie is Ana de Armas. She’s f’n amazing and that says a lot considering I’ve never been a Marilyn Monroe fan.

What a meat grinder Hollywood must have been (still is). Is there a better example of how the meat grinder started other than Marilyn Monroe? Which makes worst-writer wonder: is this movie about the world as a grinder of human meat embodied in beauty and abuse? Whether it’s the first rape scene, the second or third, the drugs or the blowjob she gives JFK, after which he rapes her…. Holly krapp, dear worst-reader. What the hell is this film about? Even though de Armas is brilliant, this film isn’t about Marilyn Monroe. Which brings worst-writer to other worst-thoughts.

Having grown up in the suburban hell madness that is #Americant, where everything is a commodity–especially all-things love and sex–it’s no wonder that so many depend on conspiracy theory to deal with (their) circumstance(s). If a list could be made of conspiracy theories from beginning to end that determined where my beloved & missed united mistakes of #Americant would be today (post former prez pee-pee-hair), high on that list would have to be the affair between Monroe and JFK. I’ve never believed it. And the only reason so many prude, sexually repressed #Americants believe it is because of the pure, unadulterated sex Monroe exudes while singing happy birthday that one night to the soon to be dead president. She was hated for that. She was hated for her sexuality. For she was the first to be raw with it–don’t you know. People forget that. There is a whole swath of #Americant that couldn’t stand her because she took sex and sexy to new heights–and she did it all without crossing the lines of explicit sex. Also. Let’s not forget. It was an insult to those who thought JFK and his wife could be #Americants first chance at a new fangled form of royalty. Any idear, dear worst-reader, how many #Americants hate (are confused by) royalty as much as they hate (are confused by) sex? We all know what happened to the Kennedys. Or?

This movie has reawakened worst-moi to the myth of Marilyn Monroe. I’m considering reading the book it is loosely based on. But don’t hold your breath for that worst-review. Like this film, the book is a work of fiction. Fiction means, first and foremost, its makers make it up. They pull $hit out of thin air. The do it because, well, it’s sellable. Make money. Then again. I’m not sure reviving Monroe in worst-writer’s brain is a good thing. And I kinda mean that in a positive way. For. Dear worst-reader. I always preferred Jane Mansfield (as a brunette not as a blonde). Or what about Jane Russell? But worst-writer’s ultimate pin-up is and will always be Raquel Welch. And at eighty she’s still worth a look! But now. In this world of FREEDOM TO BE STUPID, was Marilyn Monroe the first to open the flood gates of a world full of ditzy blondes? Bimbos? Chicks selling IT! Indeed. She was/is a girl who found a way to make a living by churning the loins of sexually repressed movie goers, male or female? Bless her and bless all sex-symbol hearts. Just don’t forget the part where educating people enough so they can tell the difference between conspiracy theory and, well, a really nice girl just trying to make a living… Blah, blah, blah.

This film has given worst-moi a chance to appreciate Marilyn Monroe from another perspective. In a world where it’s taken till now to bring down at least some of the abusers and gatekeepers, aka Harvey Weinstein, Jeffrey Eppstein, Bill Cosby, this film should be heeded and seen by all. It’s that good at portraying the pain of the female. The eternal and unnecessary pain.

Rant on.


He Who Should Not Be Named

Pseudo-Review of The Premonition and The Fifth Risk by Michael Lewis

It was hard to imagine anyone wading into that passage voluntarily, much less giving it a second thought. The words mattered less for what they said than for what they could be made to say. Like the words in the Holy Bible or the U.S. Constitution, they invited the problem of how they might be interpreted, and by whom, and for what purposes. -Michael Lewis, The Premonition: A Pandemic Story

Just finished reading two Michael Lewis books back to back. And boy did I eat them up, dear worst-reader. The thing is, Lewis has an incredible knack for story telling even though his subject matter is far from fictional.

In The Premonition Lewis chronicles not only the covid-19 pandemic but also covers in great detail SARS, or severe acute respiratory syndrome, which we’ve been battling for the past few decades in one form or the other. He also compares our current response to the 1918 influenza pandemic and how times may or may not have changed very much. The crux of this book, though, is how Lewis details the lives of those working in the wings of not only pandemic control but pandemic prevention and/or mitigation–and he only mentions Dr. Fauci a few times. Without being too science-see or getting bogged down in details, Lewis provides clarity in how Covid may or mayn’t have been better controlled. Indeed. With a lot less politics and more faith and trust in the science, things could have been different.

The Fifth Risk was written a few years before The Premonition. Having read the latter first, it is clear that both books are related. In The Fifth Risk Lewis indirectly and with masterful subtlety chronicles the election of former prez pee-pee-hair, including the buffoonery that coincides with his election. Instead of focusing on he who should not be named, Lewis writes about the ramifications of not just an inept, privileged man-child that glows like a cheeto-jezus winning the electoral college–and losing the popular vote bigly–but how that man plans to dismantle the U.S. government by systematically installing inept cronies whose only achievement in life is to admire the dear-leader or the wealth of others and thereby wear a badge of STUPID as though they’d just won an Olympic gold medal in a sport they’ve never heard of.

Ignorance allows people to disregard the consequences of their actions. -Michael Lewis, The Fifth Risk

What’s important about these books is how Lewis tells the story of American scientists, civil servants, government employees, etc. All these people deserve praise and admiration which they obviously never get–especially in these times/days of government and political fail-upwardness. It’s certainly better than telling the story of how a moron like former prez piss-hair could fail his way to the highest office of THE LAND OF FREEDOM TO BE STUPID. What a boring story that would be, eh?


Rant and read on, baby.


North Sea Oysters And Glamping

Pseudo-Review of the T6 California Edition VW Bulli

Well. There you have it, dear worst-reader. I finally did it. Although it’s not a notch on (my) bucket list (on account I don’t have the privilege and inner-banality of a bucket list), I finally took the plunge and cruised around in a (modern) hippie van souped-up as a modern day Glamper. And what a Glamper it is. With that in worst-mind, let’s have a quick review of the VW Bulli T6.

First. My better-half and I spent three weeks driving around the German, Polish and Danish baltic coast starting with a short stint in Berlin and then to upper Usedom. From there we went to Rügen, Rømø and ended it all in Sylt where I ate some of the best oysters ever. Our camp grounds of choice were either on the Baltic Sea or any of the various and vast lakes in north eastern Germany. Accompanied by our trusty e-bikes, we would setup camp with the van and sight-see on two wheels, including, by-the-buy, Beckett the killer pug in a basket. The thing is, dear worst-reader, this VW wunder-van is one cool piece of kit–and Beckett the killer pug, at fourteen, didn’t seem to mind hanging out with us. The worst-thing, though, I’m sure, is that we didn’t get to use half of what the VW Bulli is capable of. Reason for that requires a bit of nit-picking.

The Bad

It took us three to four nights to figure out the Bullies tech. For example. This vehicle/camper comes with an onboard diesel heater. It has a burner/heater underneath the cabin that siphons diesel from the vehicles tank. After the third night, when it got cold, we screwed something up with the onboard computer that controls the heater. We spent a night in six degrees celsius without heat. Thank goodness for German down covers and a lot of body heat, including whatever Beckett the killer pug could spare. The next morning customer service from the van rental company talked me through an onboard computer reset that required pulling a fuse underneath the driver’s seat. The reset worked. Which is a good thing cause we needed it as we received no favour from the weather for the rest of the trip.

The other issue was the propane tank and the twin stove burners that are part of the onboard kitchen that is included with this model of camping Bulli. There was a serious leak in the gas line which meant our gas bottle was empty after the first three nights–and I assure, dear worst-reader, we smelled it the whole time. Although it was easy replacing the propane bottle, there was nothing customer service could do for us regarding the leak–other than recommending we buy a separate camping burner so that would could cook our tea in the morning. After a bit of convincing (my better-half who was afraid of the obscene smell of propane) I resorted to opening and closing the propane bottle as we used the stove. An inconvenience but we got used to it–and nothing exploded.

Although the van is only two years old and has about twenty-thousand kilometres on it, it has probably gotten quite a bit of use. Camping–or as I’ve learned: Glamping–has surged during the pandemic for Germans. Considering the trickery of this vehicle, I’m wondering how many others have had issues with it and have dealt with those issues without respecting the extremely limited tolerances of how this thing is put together.

Another problem was the pop-up roof, which is where we slept the whole time on account it was just too cool to resist. As mentioned, we didn’t have a lot of luck with the North German weather. At times both wind and rain was brutal. This may or may not have caused the pop-up roof to not lock in place and the surrounding (roof) tent would sag. We had to lower and then raise the roof a few times so that it would re-lock. When not locked (or sagging) the lights in the cabin wouldn’t work, the board computer kept giving us weird warnings, all of which was especially problematic at night as the sides and front of the roof would flap around like a loose tent thereby scaring Dorothy in her quest for the Wizard of (my) Oz.

The last nit-pick I’ll mention has more to do with worst-moi than the vehicle. Although we rented a porti-potti I was hellbent on NOT pissing in a bucket, don’t you know. Since I grew up in poor suburban-hell #Americant I’ve had about enough of pissing in buckets. But that’s neither here nor there, eh, dear worst-reader. The most important thing about Glamping in an imaginary hippie vehicle is whether or not you can do it without an onboard toilet. Since we only stayed in camping parks, toilet access was no problem when climbing around the rooftop bed or walking in the middle of a cold night to the camping facilities.

The Good

It was a fight, don’t you know, dear worst-reader. My better-half wanted to go Glamping and I wanted room service with a short layover in Bangkok. Well. We know who won. The only concession I earned from the vacation fight was that we wouldn’t rent one of those uncool (spiesig) mobile home truck/camper/things–onboard toilet be damned! For worst-moi it was the VW camper–and dreams of hippies–or nothing. But get this, dear worst-reader. My better-half is so impressed with this vehicle after three weeks of first-world Glamping struggle, she asked a number of times if we should buy one. WTF? To make things worse, I didn’t immediately discard the question. The thing is, dear worst-reader, we are at the point in our lives where we don’t need a car. That is to worst-say, we need a car sometimes–like for extreme weather shopping and errands–but otherwise why not replace the car with a modern hippie van where we could take off every other weekend, getting more use out of four wheels, and if we need to do some shopping or run some errands we can easily do it with this van. That’s the trick with this vehicle, dear worst-reader. You can either camp in it or if you want to see parts of the inner city of a small town (or go shopping) in God knows where Europe you can park this thing anywhere a car can park. Which we did a number of times.

We drove for three weeks well over two thousand kilometres. The VW bus cruises on the Autobahn and back roads with ease and comfort–including DDR backroads. It has plenty of storage space, two beds, swivel driver and passenger seats and a heater that heats the cabin with ease–even when sleeping in the pop-up bed at some pretty low temperatures. Once we figured out how to use the leaky propane stove–which I’m sure can be easily fixed–we were able to cook several meals (zoodles with homemade Bolognese sauce and plenty of fresh eighteen month old parmesan or a cheese and mushroom omelette) in the cabin, subverting bad weather and allowing us to watch a movie on the iPad. Making fresh tea and coffee is a breeze. The fridge holds enough wine and cheese to help us watch a second iPad movie during another day of bad weather. Did I mention how well the friggin’ heater in this thing works (once we got it working)? Did I mention how bad the weather can be in Northern Germany in early June on the Baltic Sea? When connected to electricity there is plenty of USB ports for iPhones and iPads and normal juice for charging e-bike batteries. Oh. This thing comes with Apple Car Play–which I’m now convinced I would never buy a vehicle without. And while I’m on the subject of Apple. I even brought along one of our HomePod Minis to see if I could use it on-the-go. It works like a charm and there were a few nights jazz filled the camping halls of Valhalla and/or confused other pöbel campers with their convenient albeit ugly (uncool) campers–even though they do have built-in toilets. Heck. For going on sixty and having some pee-pee problems, I think I did pretty good finding my way to a toilet in the middle of a North German camping night.

The Oysters

As noted, we ended out trip on the island of Sylt. This was my second attempt to visit Sylt. The fist attempt was a disaster. Last October we had booked ten days in a cute little bungalow but because of the weather we skipped out on the last three days. I have never seen so much rain and wet in my life outside of tropical regions. Keep in mind, dear worst-reader, Sylt is a very special place for Das Volk. It is, as best as worst-writer can describe it, the ultimate German vacation spot–with the worst fcuking weather ever! What the heck draws so many Germans to this place is a mystery (to worst-moi). For. Don’t you know. The only way to reach this island is either by train or by fairy. This time we entered Sylt from Denmark and fairy. Otherwise you have to get to the island via a train you drive you car on and it carries you across the North Sea backwards for a few miles and you get all confused and it doesn’t matter because, well, at least there’s plenty of good wine, food and oysters once you get there. Wait. The weather on Sylt sucks.

Der Porsche Pöbel Insel Überhaupt

Yea. Sylt is the place where old Germans (the only ones, btw, who can afford them) take their Porsches to feel young again driving up and down the lone Sylt highway considering whether or not they’ll get Königsberg back or maybe, just maybe, they’ll get a chance to buy Greenland from Denmark before the #Trump-ist of my beloved & missed #Americant do. Or maybe not.

Putting all worst-writer nonsense aside, there is one redeeming factor to visit the German über-island of Sylt. Due to some sea barring goddess of Viking lore Sylt managed to import Irish oysters and now they’re everywhere in the muddy North Sea German waters. And if that ain’t bad enough, they’re f’n delicious. Keep in mind, dear worst-reader, worst-writer was born and reared around the Chesapeake Bay. There was a time when Chesapeake oysters ruled the world. Reason? The brackish waters of the bay produced über oysters. That is. They were everything Botticelli dreamed of when he was dreaming of The Birth of Venus. Sweat. Tender. The smell of the ocean when the sun shines upon her. The texture of human tongue languishing in the feminine of life that is seventy percent of her earth–that only a real man can reap. Or. The oysters from Sylt are so good I’ll go back when I can just to eat them (her).

And by-the-buy. The VW Bulli camper rocks. I’ll keep you posted if we get one.

Rant on.


Exploring Streaming, Finding Budgie

Worst-title 2: Doing my worst-best to discover the convenience of music streaming

As you’all may or mayn’t know, dear worst-readers, as an Apple fanboy, if I’m gonna finally break down (give-in) and try music streaming, it’s gotta be with Apple’s music service. Or?


After a six month trial (on account I bought HomePod Mini’s last fall to provide stereo to the AppleTV I bought last year), it took me till the end of that trial to buckle down and finally figure out what this streaming krapp is all about. Yeah. Six months for free is one thing. Having to start paying for it is another. No. Seriously. I really didn’t think I was ready for music streaming. But here we are, eh.

As you certainly missed elsewhere in this worst-blog, here and here, I’ve been maintaining an SBC media server for audio and video for going on a decade now. That server has a quarter century of purchased CD music and DVD movies/tv and it’s done its job. But. As much as I’d like to keep on keeping-on with physical media, I have to worst-admit, even worst-writer has to go with the punches every once-a-once. Times not only be a’changing but maybe it’s not so bad to change a bit along with it. And so.

The question is: Which streaming service should I NOT use? That question, by-the-buy, is easy to answer. Since Spotify can’t register on my radar (on account it supports with around $100m the lie of the mind that is my beloved & missed #Americant via Joe new-born Limbaugh Rogan), the only other services to choose from that I know anything about is Amazon Music, Tidal or SoundCloud. Amazon music left a bad smell in my nose as I used what it included with Prime for a while. Both the streaming and the sound quality were awful. SoundCloud was much better at streaming, even though I only used its free-tier service. The other problem I had with SoundCloud was the music offering. Although it has lots of new artists doing lots of great music, that’s just not how my music taste rolls. That worst-said, I consider SoundCloud to be the most original music streamer out there. It’s definitely staying on my radar for the future. As far as Tidal is concerned, even though I never tested it, I knew it could be an option because it streamed lossless audio. Again. Amazon’s Music service didn’t do music justice. Higher quality bitrates or better bandwidth cannot and should not be compromised here. But then… uh oh. Apple bumped up its service to lossless and I have to admit–I’m impressed.


The thing is dear worst-reader, it took me years to get used to iTunes. Remember iTunes? Once I got used to ripping and encoding my CDs to FLAC, I then had to re-encode them to the highest bitrate MP3 so my music would work with iTunes. For years I maintained two music libraries. My better-half could then use the simplicity of iTunes for her music needs and when I needed CD quality, I used other players that supported FLAC. As frustrating as all that was, I got used to it. The banality, btw, of having to do that was because Apple is either greedy, stupid or just outright spiteful towards open-source (FLAC) or it had made too many promises to the music industry–which doesn’t make sense to me because I always bought my CDs. But on that worst-note, I should die-gress.

Almost conclusion

Now that I’m a paying, streaming customer, the question lingers whether or not I’m gonna stick with it. It’s been about two months since taking Apple Music seriously. In that time I can’t say that streaming has knocked my socks off. Then again, the convenience when out-and-about and calling up a song is kinda cool–especially when the streaming quality is better than anything I experienced previously (Amazon). When at home and streaming to my stereo system from iPhone, iPad or Mac, Apple’s lossless rivals any quality I achieved using FLAC. Then there’s the interface…

Sucky interfaces

The Apple Music (app) interface sucks. And get this. It sucks more than iTunes ever did. As a top category for picking/choosing music it has what it weirdly calls Apple Music. This category designates Apple’s streaming service. Oh really. The streaming service has three sub-categories namely Listen Now, Browse and Radio. Whaaaaa? WTF do I need Radio for? Go into one of the other categories and you’re overwhelmed with choices galore that somehow are deemed worthy by those who set up this $hit. The only way I’ve been able to find music is by using search, the results of which are as confusing as anything else. Wait. Am I too old for this krapp? #Nomatter

Another category in the Music app is Library. This is something like what iTunes used to be–I’m guessing. It has sub-categories that makes sense that the streaming service (above) doesn’t have. This is the users library which stems out of all your owned music that is converted into this service when you activate it. That conversion, btw, is another reason I postponed or was skeptical to sign up in the first place. Now that I know how NOT to loose my music data to Apple (by maintaining my media library on a separate server), I’ve simply added some of my music here and now it’s part of my library. Which is cool on account I had lost a few songs from Aerosmith and Bad Company and now I have them back–until I cancel. Whoopi! Which begs another worst-question: If I’m streaming music why do I need a library? Ok. At least Library has subcategories that I can relate to like Album and Artist. But. Again. I’m now using a streaming service and…? Ok. I don’t get it and I probably have to spend some more time to figure it out. Then again, who are the people (automatons) that come up with this $hit in Cupertino? Die-gress.

Audio tech confusion

There’s another little issue that’s bugging me, dear worst-reader. Now that I may or mayn’t become a music streamer, I’m also an avid non-audiophile. After years of fiddling with the idear of being an audiophile, I gave up on that krapp toot-sweet. The only thing the audiophile world taught me was that audio equipment sucks–and the industry is filled with grifters–like the bicycle industry, btw. Does that mean there’s no quality differences in audio reproduction? Heck not. There are huge differences. But audio reproduction can be scary–above and beyond being a money pit. Hence I couldn’t wait to get rid of all that dead-weight that was/is the BS of surround-sound, hi-res, fifty pound amps, DVD vs Bluray and, the worst of the worst, subwoofers. It took me the better part of twenty years to figure out that all I need is STEREO. Since then, after the discovery of Raspberry Pi and managing a home media server, all my audio equipment is the cheapest best sounding music reproduction I’ve ever heard.

And one more thing

What I dislike about audiophile BS is the krapp between amp, pre-amp, volume control, input-output, cinch, DAC, subwoofer, etc., etc. Obviously this technical krapp has to be dealt with if one is not gonna listen to music through laptop speakers or wants to enjoy music as one sees fit thereby getting on with the digital age–and not breaking the bank. When I can, I prefer streaming music from my Mac to one of three Airplay speakers in my little townhouse. Reason? The Mac (to worst-moi) sounds best–and I can’t figure out why–compared to streaming from my iPhone. A second set of stereo speakers are in our bookshelf and are driven by a RaspberryPi and a Hifiberry Amp2 (60w class D amp). A third set of stereo speakers are upstairs in my workroom and are connected to a second RaspberryPi using a Hifiberry DacPlus that is connected to a Teac mini integrated amp. Considering that two of these players use an open-source version of Airplay (shairport), it all works like a charm–with only a few hiccups here or there.

The hiccups are mostly about volume control–or is it pre-amping? Here’s an example. There is a significant difference in audio quality when streaming Apple Music using the Mac system volume or using the volume control in the app. WTF! Should I have paid more attention during my frivolous audiophile days concerning what the fcuk a pre-amp is? I’m guessing this has something to do with how these devices differentiate sources. To try and figure this out, dear worst-reader, I even rode my e-bike to a local Apple Store and asked one of the blue-shirts what this is all about. The answer was the same as most answers I get from blue-shirts: Wow. That’s above my pay-grade. You buying a new Apple Watch or not? They had no idear what I was talking about. But at least they did suggest I get in contact with Apple support online. Who could have known, eh. (Sarcasm off.)


I’ve never been into modern pop-music. It’s one of the reasons I’ve avoided music streaming services. Is that a generational thing? Maybe. That brings me to a few worst-questions: What am I paying for? What if I don’t like the music being pushed? Why is there so much disparity between music source and music player? Is this all about convenience? I mean. Yeah. It is convenient. WTF! Seriously. After fiddling with this for the past six months, I still don’t care about whatever Apple is pushing. That’s what streaming services do first, right? That worst-said, the other day, on a whim, I asked Siri to play me some Budgie. And she did. Now that takes me back to a time (70s) where three Englander-dudes played music as though they never had fun doing anything else. Seriously. They make music as though it’s better than making…

But I die-gress.

Thanking you for all the good-luck wishes in exploring music streaming services (at my age) and dealing with the Godzilla of monopolies that is in my worst-face every fcuking day: Apple.

Rant on.


Look Where

Source of pic: screenshot with some extra safety

Can you believe it, dear worst-reader. My better half finally singed up for one of those streaming services. I mean. We’ve actually tried it before but gave up on it pretty quick. That was back in 2015. Something about there just not being much available that was worth couch time. Since we’ve been able to stream via a certain online distribution website, as movies and shows are included with its yearly subscription, we’ve kinda settled for that. Till now. I guess. The reality is, my better-half watches this stuff more than I do and for the past year she’s been complaining about not having anything new to watch. Oh well.

We decided long ago that we would avoid subscription services in our media consumption. Instead we relied on AppleTV and would pay for whatever it is we watch. But then AppleTV+ hit and I had just purchased a new MacBook, which meant that I got the service for free for a year. I have to admit, I kinda liked it–even though I didn’t renew it after a year when it costs money. Even though some of Apple’s shows were a bit–how should I worst-put this–almost amateurish, more recent productions have definitely moved things to a higher level. So when my better-half wanted to sign up, I tried to push for Apple. As usual, I lost that argument, which I might be kinda sad about. Boo-who. But. I am using Apple Music right now after they offered me a six month free trial. Why does it hurt me to admit that I like it? Since I have to start paying for it next month, we’ll see how long I really like it. Moving on.

Pseudo-Review: Don’t Look Up

My better-half is pleased so far. She binge-watched a tv series the other weekend and enjoyed it. We watch our first movie together the other night and I’m not disappointed. The movie: Don’t Look Up. And that brings worst-moi to a few worst-words about it.

First. Great movie. Great acting. Ok directing. Sufficient drama–or in this case comedy. Like I’ve worst-said here and here about comedy, especially political and social satire, what now? Also. Who is this movie for? I mean, is there an intended audience? If you haven’t seen it, here’s worst-writer’s summary. And be warned. Spoiler alert!

The planet is about to be struck by a humungous asteroid or comet. A planet killing comet. Two scientists who discovered the comet are summoned into a/the world of politics and media in order to advise the president of my beloved & missed united mistakes of #Americant about how to deal with this comet. The president is a woman and her chief of staff is her son and as the story progresses these politicians unabashedly become the spitting image of former prez pee-pee-hair, his family, and all the corruption and ineptitude and greed-mongering that went along with it. But this movie is a comedy. Or. Put another way. This movie is a satire. With that in mind, let’s take a short break and look it up, shall we.

Satire is a genre of the visual, literary, and performing arts, usually in the form of fiction and less frequently non-fiction, in which vices, follies, abuses, and shortcomings are held up to ridicule, often with the intent of shaming or exposing the perceived flaws of individuals, corporations, government, or society itself into improvement. Although satire is usually meant to be humorous, its greater purpose is often constructive social criticism, using wit to draw attention to both particular and wider issues in society. -Source: Wiki

Now. This film is probably the busiest left-wing, environmental film I’ve ever seen where it does its best to shun a genre by just showing reality in a hi-larry-us way. I mean. Obviously. The writer’s intention with this movie is to provide one of the clearest mirrors ever that would/could/should enable so many people, like the seventy-four or so million who voted for former prez Cheeto-Jezus, to take a good look at reality. The thing about mirrors, though, is you can’t make people look into it–unless it’s about vanity. Am I wrong. The other problem is, even if you get someone to look into a mirror absent vanity, you can never really know if they know what they are seeing. A manipulated mind do play tricks, eh. Which brings me back to my question: who is this movie for? Is it a way to busy creative types? Is it a movie to motivate those who already know that the planet killing comet is a metaphor for climate change–and we’re doomed #nomatter what? Or did the producers of this movie get a freebie where they were able to show Meryl Streep’s gorgeous Arschgeweih (tramp stamp). Who knows, eh, dear worst-reader.

Very fun movie nevertheless.

Rant on.



A Most Unentertaining Film

Source of pic: see wiki link below

Worst-title 2: How things look while you wait for American Dream death.

Worst-title 3: Pseudo-Review of the documentary Nomadland.

No. Seriously. Dear worst-reader. Nomadland has to be one of the most bizarre if not surreal movies ever. No. Seriously. I’d even compare it to the ending of 2001 Space Odyssey. You know. All the colourful mind-fcuk Stanley Kubrick did with the death (rebirth?) of Bowman. The only difference to Nomadland is that after the first ten or fifteen minutes of it my mind’s eye kept showing me images of worst-writer asking himself in front of a shiny, black monolith:

But. Wait. There’s no story here.

Or is there?

A few hours after watching it I came up with the following mind’s eye explanation for Nomadland. Are you ready? Here it goes.

This is the greatest master degree thesis submission in the history of #Americant university curricula that is Radio, Television & Film.

Does this mean I wouldn’t recommend the film? No. Stream it now, dear worst-reader. It’s actually kinda cool. I mean. It has no point. It has no story. It certainly doesn’t have any sex and violence or comic book value. But it is kinda cool. So what does it do for worst-writer? Ok. You asked for it. Buckle up buttercup.

First. Movies like this usually motivate worst-moi to read the book. You know, artsy-fartsy films. A film about vandwelling in a country like my beloved & missed #Americant, though, doesn’t motivate. Oscar nominations don’t motivate much either. I should add that I didn’t mind waiting for the film to be available via streaming, with or without Covid. So it took me a while, after its release, to get to it.

According to sources (Wiki), the author of the book is an “American author who writes about subcultures”. Ok. That’s fancy, I guess. Then there’s the inclusion of lots of real-life folk in the film. You know. The director only used a few seasoned actors. Which means the other characters weren’t characters at all but instead real people, filmed in their environment, which makes this film a documentary, IMHO. Am I wrong?

One of the biggest questions I have about the film is the director. This film certainly motivates me to watch some of her other work, but I’m not gonna rush out to do it. I will simply tip my worst-hat off to her for putting this subculture in a confused movie that is worth your while, if you like artsy-fartsy films.

Which brings me to McDormand. What a resume she has, eh! Oh, how being married to one of the Coen Brothers can make for great film making. Personally, I think she’s great in Raising Arizona, Burn After Reading and Three Billboards. But her crown jewel has to be Fargo where to this day, after so many years, I can still hear her Dakota accent and those boots crushing through frozen snow in every damn scene. That worst-said, for the life of me I can’t figure out what earns her an Oscar for Nomadland. The film earning an Oscar? Yes. But it’s a documentary. And she won best actress. Repeat: for best acting. In a documentary. Sarcasm off.

The thing that gets to me about this film is the confusion between content and context. Vandwelling is nothing new in my beloved & missed #Americant. When I was a kid (in the 1970s) the dream of every working-class stiff in rural bum-fcuk, redneck, white-trash #Americant, was going on a cruise or owning an RV. Heck, those who were able to manage the purchase, also managed to make an already ugly neighbourhood uglier with noodles and oodles of these massive car-houses on wheels parked in yards, on account they didn’t fit in driveways, rotting like everything else. Ah. The spoils of consume-to-survive post WW2 #Americant, eh. That RV living was replaced with van living only means that all those damn hippies in their VW Busses I guess did leave an impression (on society). Moving on.

Obviously an RV is different from living in a van–until one considers the ramification of Reaganism, which, ironically, according to worst-writer, the same cruise ship, RV, VW Bus people enabled and facilitated and thereby turned their nomadic dreams into the/a downtrodden van nightmare. Which brings me to the only scene in this film that stands out for having any dramatic, redeeming value.

While McDormand’s character is borrowing money from family to fix her broken substitute home (van=poor man’s RV), there is a conversation about real-estate. McDormand sits idly by while others discuss the potential of #Americant’s last hope to make money in the crooked and misaligned economy that is the before and aftermath of the great (2008) depression-recession. You know. The buying and selling of real-estate which always requires someone else’s money. During this conversation McDormand blurts out a question that goes something like this:

Why would you buying something that you can never own?

Good question, eh, dear worst-reader. The question is especially good when you consider this film is based on a book written by someone who specialises in subculture and it was directed by Chloé Zhao who is from China and has a not so uninteresting family. I mean. Remember the context here. This is a film slash documentary about #Americant and how it has fallen prey to the whims of having elected morons and greed mongers as political and economic leaders. Of course, being nomadic has nothing to do with being forced into poverty because you’re a fcuking idiot and you spend your entire life chasing after candy that’s being held in front of you by moneyed and political ideological interests. Candy that has never held a grain of truth. Come and get some, baby. Come and get some.

The thing this film fails-upwards at is replacing the obvious (poverty) with new-fangled imagery (nomads). Perhaps that’s what makes it charming. Yeah. I guess it’s charming to play around with the obviousness of what has given rise to #Americant. Is the obvious better interpreted through the book? Maybe. But. Like I wort-said. I’m not interested in reading it. I grew up in and around the subject matter tackled here. The problem worst-writer has with this film is its portrayal of generational wanton political and social ignorance and ineptitude that is well hidden, disguised, avoided. Instead. Everyone in this film wears that new-fangled #Americant symbol that has replaced the stars & stripes, the bald eagle, Rosie the Riveter. That new symbol is nothing less than the smiley-face. You know. That non-dimensional figure that has the for-ever forced human expression of having to cope with meaninglessness galore and never understanding how or why. Or something like that.

Rant on.



Pseudo-Review: Keychron K2 V2

Worst-title 2: This is one cool keyboard that I didn’t know I needed

Every once-a-once, dear worst-reader, whether in a computer section of a retailer or fiddling around at an Apple Store, I always give keyboards a test. The thing is, as a MacBook user for the past (going on) twenty years, I’ve never really liked the keyboards. And even though there’s been a lot of complaining about the 2015-2017 12” MacBook’s butterly keyboard, I’ve actually taken a liking to it compared to their chiclet keyboards. That worst-said, over the past few years when trying out all these fancy gamer keyboards, which are nothing but copies of keyboards from the IBM PC days (1980s), I couldn’t help but think these things are more for nine1 finger typers. And so. I’m there. I need me some new keyboard.

When my MacBook is in clamshell mode I always use an Apple wireless aluminium keyboard that dates back to 2010. Yeah. In fact. When I bought my 2017 12” Macbook I also took in my trusty albeit broken keyboard hoping they’d repair it. And get this. After I paid for the MacBook, I’m sure, the Apple Store just gave me a new aluminium wireless keyboard. Now. They didn’t give me the newer magic keyboard. Of course not. But they had an actual new-old aluminium keyboard and they didn’t even charge me for it. Ain’t that cool.

New-old keyboards betold

I broke down the other day after visiting with my son who just bought a new gamer keyboard. After I finished fiddling with it–where he always admires his old man’s nine finger typing skills–it didn’t take long before I knew what was to be done. And so. When I got home I started doing some research.

Which of these new, fancy, higher tech copies of 1980s keyboards should I get? Keep in mind. I’ll rarely refer to these things as mechanical keyboards. They are NOT mechanical in the least. If you notice in the pic above, I’m still an avid worst-typewriter. Now that’s where you’ll find mechanics in a keyboard. Moving on.

Long worst-review almost short

I decided for the Keychron K2 version 2 bluetooth and RGB keyboard with the aluminum bezel. Since it was also on sale I kinda new the stars were aligned. As soon as I hit the buy button I continued watching reviews on the youtubes and blogs to see what I’ve gotten myself in. Luckily, unlike many other tech purchases I make, the reviews about this keyboard didn’t make me regret my choice. The only problem? I got a delay message from you-know-who online distributor which meant it took almost a full week for it to arrive. You know, a full week after we pay that annual fee that’s supposed to give us two-day shipping. Sarcasm off.

Brown, Red, Blue

This keyboard is much heavier than I expected. I suppose that has something to do with the aluminium bezel. As far as the design and styling, I like the contrasting grey keys and the orange accentuated ESC and RGB lighting key. I’ve only begun to understand the meaning between red, blue and brown key mechanisms so the jury’s still out on that. I have the brown mechanisms. I think my son’s keyboard is red. If the brown mechanism is supposed to be between the red and blue in loudness and tactile feel, I’m not sorry with my choice. I don’t need anything louder–but a bit more key resistance would be welcome. Then again. Beggars can’t choosey, eh. For whatever reason the red key device was only available in the larger (with number keys) keyboard and was significantly more expensive.

RGB Backlighting

I’ve been worst-typing with it for about three days now and it’s gonna take some getting used to, which should be expected after typing for the past (almost) twenty years with krappy chiclet keyboards. But my first impression is positive. Even though I’m still not quite sure what the RGB backlighting is all about, I’ll probably only use white light when I need it in the evenings. BTW. This is the first external keyboard I’ve owned with backlighting, so that’s cool. I guess I can see the lure of the fancy lighting for young folk. Then again. Keychron does market this little keyboard to gamers, which, even as a non-gamer, doesn’t make much sense with its compactness. Don’t gamers want more room? But I’m just gonna let that sit for a while till I figure out more ins and outs.


I was a little surprised how large and bulky it is compared to my aging Apple keyboard. In fact, directly compared, its size is not insubstantial. It’s at least, I’m guessing, two and a half times higher and, as I already mentioned, it’s waaaaay heavier. When typing intensely on the Apple keyboard I would often have to adjust its position as it moved around with my finger hacking. The Keychron doesn’t move at all. It’s more planted on my desktop and its rigidity makes typing more precise. In fact, I would compare it to how the rigidity of a car or motorcycle chassis (without getting into suspension) determines how well it handles on the road. That’s cool, right.


One of the issues I was concerned about is bluetooth. Although I’m a bluetooth fan, for as long as bluetooth has been around, I’m kinda surprised that it doesn’t do more. You know. Like polish my toenails or just work. Luckily I’ve had no issues, except one. The keyboard immediately connected to my Mac and I guess it’s polishing its toenails. What more could you ask for, right. There is a lag between the keyboard waking up (after sleep mode) and then reconnecting. This takes a few seconds–where the Mac keyboard had zero lag. The good news is, once the keyboard wakes up, the number 1, 2 or 3 key lights up in blue. This lets you know which of three bluetooth devices is connected. Yeah. That’s worth a few second wait.

Macintosh & Linux

Obviously I bought the Mac version of this keyboard. It has a sliding button on the left side that allows you to switch to Windows. It also includes a bunch of spare keys to replace the Mac keys. What would have been really cool is having spare keys for Linux. I think Keychron is working on that. As of the writing of this worst-review, and I’ve not yet connected it, but I also use a Raspberry Pi 4 (see pic above) for $hits & giggles. I’m looking forward to just hitting a button and connecting to my Pi. Previously, I would have to disconnect my Mac keyboard and then reconnect it to the Pi. Had to do the same thing when reconnecting to my Mac. Yeah. That was no fun. Oh. And before I forget. This Keychron K2 has a few more keys than the Apple keyboard. I can now finally enjoy using the page-up, page-down, home and end keys. Heck. It even has a dedicated del (delete) key. Do you have any idear, dear worst-reader, how long it might take me to get used to NOT using the option back-space key for delete, i.e. the standard key combination I’ve been using on the Mac keyboard layout for all these years?

Worst-review conclusion

Is this keyboard a keeper? Yea. I guess it is. Well. I think it is as long as the battery life lasts, the keys don’t corrode and it doesn’t stop cleaning my toenails. At the least, if it fails or I find fault in it, I will most likely upgrade to another Keychron. I’m sold on these new fangled keyboards, that’s for sure. Is it worth the price I paid considering what a new Apple magic keyboard costs? A new Apple magic keyboard is but another chiclet keyboard, and it costs quite a bit more. Since the wireless/bluetooth seems to work reliably and the key feel is a pleasure to type on and and and… It has a delete key!

All in all, let’s see how it goes.

Even if I don’t end up keeping this keyboard, I don’t think I’ll give up on Keychron. The K2 V2 is already an out-of-date model (hence the sale price) and what I’ve seen of newer models there’s been a whole lot of improvement. I’m sold.

Rant on.


  1. Nine finger typers are those who learned to type with every finger except the left thumb. ↩︎

Feindesliebe Or Stockholm Syndrom Or Both?

Source of pic: wiki

Worst-title 2: After Nazis and DDR what will be Germany’s third atonement?

Oh, it’s so rare, dear worst-reader. So rare that I sit back and watch a German tv-movie. You know. Those movies that have looked, sounded and play-out the same since… Well, since post WW2/Wirtschaftswunder Germany got all whacky with their Tatort and Doctors working in the German Alps, etc, TV shows. Or something like that. But before I get too far off worst-subject complaining about the same looking actors on the same looking shows, let me worst-move on.

I watched the film Honecker und der Pastor the other night. The creative personality behind this film is no-less than Jan Josef Liefers, who I believe is one of the founders of the #allesdichtmachen campaign that I’ve worst-written about here (more info below). In the spirit of keeping my worst-writing as short as possible, allow me to say this as my worst-critique of this movie: what a missed opportunity. Now that we have that behind us, let’s get it on.

The thing is, dear worst-reader, I was here when the wall came down. At the time I was glued to the news and tv and papers and magazines through the whole ordeal. I took a few train rides to Berlin during that time. I remember trading a pair of Levis for a watch with a random guy from Dresden that I’ve since lost and it only worked for a week after I got it. The reason I traded something valuable for something worthless was because the watch had written on its face: Made in the DDR. I thought that was cool. I also worked for the Truehandanstalt that was responsible for privatising and/or selling-off the DDR’s state owned enterprises. Yea. I did all that while at the same time securing my future as a loser on account I should have jumped ship just as fast as I did when I left my beloved & missed united mistakes of #Americant. You know. I’m one of them slow learners. So it took me a few years (a few years too late) to figure out that once the train got rolling that would become REUNIFICATION, as a foreigner, my days were numbered as a productive participant in good ole Germania. Hence, by the end of the 90s, I got the full wrath of Deutschland den Deutschen (Germany for Germans). Obviously I never left but I also found a way to give up any career aspirations on account there are just too many lonely people in godforsaken Germania and #Eurowasteland. And so. Having been forced into a kind of early retirement, I gave into the idear that I would simply marry-well, stop working all together and that’s that. But enough about worst-moi and the uninspiring choices I’ve made, eh.

The early days of German reunification was kind of mind-boggling. That the Helmut Kohl government committed to a one-to-one exchange rate of West Deutsche Marks to (worthless) East Deutsche Marks was a shocker. Then there was the Solidaritätszuschlag which was an abrupt and not insubstantial tax surcharge that would be added to a life of über-taxation–which to this day I believe still exists. And let’s not forget about the Ossi vs. Wessi culture war that engulfed the new unified country–and which I had a particular fun time with on account it added to the schtick I played as a stupid Ausländer (foreigner) making fun of both sides. But none of that holds a crock of significance compared to how the commie cocksuckers of the DDR got away with more than just murder. In fact, I was shocked out of my wits when the Germans let the Honeckers leave for Chili. For let it be worst-said here, dear worst-reader. If there’s anything I hate more than monarchs, it’s commie cocksuckers that get away with (more than) murder.

Which brings me back to my worst-critique about Honecker und der Pastor that Jan Josef Liefers screwed up. For you see, dear worst-reader. Germany has much to atone for in its short history. Keep in mind. The country of Germany, as we all know and love–you know, its Fräuleins, its Bier, Cars, Autobahns, bread and the women, the women, the women–has only been in existence since 1949. And in that short period of time it has to show the world that it can do better than Nazis. Unless, of course, you are a fcuking commie cocksucker. Which also means this relatively young country has to show the world that it can do better than the DDR. As far as I’m concerned, it’s done a pretty good job regarding all them fcuking Nazis. But it’s not done a good job about the DDR. Why that is remains to be seen but I’m guessing it has to do with stuff that I’ll never understand. You know. Pacifism (for the sake of pacifism). Free will (until it has something to do with someone else’s money). And let’s not forget that whole god and religion thing. For if you’re not aware, dear worst-reader, religion still plays a huge role in the life & times of most of #Eurowastelanders–and especially Germanians.

The story of Honecker und der Pastor is about a brief relationship between a DDR Evangelical pastor who takes into his home the former leader commie cocksucker Eric Honecker, who just happens to be, due to certain circumstances (sarcasm off), homeless and destitute. Of course, the pastor doesn’t just put up Eric Honecker but also his wife Margot, who is more of a commie cocksucker than Eric. These two people, who once brutally and ruthlessly ruled East Germany as though they were the hand of some commie cocksucker evil-god, stayed with the pastor and his family until they would eventually leave Germany for Chile. Now. That’s fine and dandy. Jan Josef Liefers does a good job of putting this story together. Where he fails–in worst-writer’s opinion–is finding more ways to be critical of what commie cocksuckers really are. Namely. Commie cocksuckers and any other form of authoritarianism, whether religious or political (ideology), deserves no respite when it comes to ridicule, criticism and being portrayed as anything other than, well, commie cocksuckers. It’s the job of the artist–the true artist–to do just that. That is why as I watched this movie I had the following dialogue with my better-half.

Worst-moi: What’s the point of portraying the Honecker’s as human? It’s the same mistake they made in the movie Der Untergang (Downfall).

My better-half: The movie is not about the Honecker’s it’s about the Pastor and his family. It’s a nice story.

Worst-moi: No woman! You’re wrong. It’s not a nice story. Germans don’t have nice stories. And besides it should be a movie about how this fcuking country should atone for all its sins, which now includes the fcuking DDR! Fcuk. This $hit pisses me off. How come they don’t hire me to write this $hit. I’ll give you and your fcuking Germans a story. A fcuking worst-writer story about fcuking commie cocksuckers, baby.

My better-half: Oh. Atonement. Yea. More atonement. That’s a good one.

Worst-moi: Fcuk!

As good as the movie Der Untergang is, it shares one thing with this movie. For whatever reason the Germans are having a hard time, at least in their story telling, dealing with their past. Politically and legally, I have no issues with Germany. In fact, unlike my beloved & missed #Americant, I’d put Germany up against any western country that claims to be law abiding and politically just. As far as Germany’s capitalism, well, that’s a whole other worst-post. But let me worst-say this. Considering how Germany’s capitalism has reunited this country, I’d say there are worse examples out there regarding the what/how countries distribute consume-to-survive and/or wealth. Is that, perhaps, a reason Jan Josef Liefers thinks it’s ok to portray monsters as humans? And even if Honecker und der Pastor is about the humanity of a DDR evangelical family, I’m worst-wondering if this movie would have been better served without so much of the Honeckers that history only needs to remember for their disservice and abuse (of humanity).

Rant on.



Overcooked Pasta Ain’t All That Bad

Screenshot from the movie Pig (2021)

Worst-title 2: Review of the movie Pig (2021) and SPOILER ALERT!

The most profound moment in the entire film is when Robin Feld (Nicolas Cage) tells a former cooking student that he always overcooked the pasta. Now. In this film/story we’re dealing with a somewhat famous albeit now reclusive/austeiger chef from Portland, Oregon, who has turned to hunting truffles while living in a shack in the woods. Portland is a place, by-the-buy, I’ve been to once–and will probably never return. And I’m not worst-saying that because of the pretentious nature of everything involving the service industries in that part of hourly-wage #Americant. It’s just a place, like most of the North West–if not all of #Americant–that gives me the creeps. I don’t know. Maybe it’s how the weather is so similar to German weather. Or the wet forests out there that can only breed vampires, wolves and she-males that should be lifting weights or gutting forests. That worst-said, this film threw worst-writer for a loop so far and wide that it’s been added to my list of great movies–or at least one of the best movies I’ve seen in years. I mean. I didn’t know what to expect when I started it the other night. Nor had I heard anything/much about it. But it is starring Nicole Cage. And even though I’ve not seen anywhere near ALL his movies–because he’s certainly prolific in that arena–there are a few that will always stand out in my worst-mind. Wild At Heart is one. Raising Arizona is another. Adaptation is NOT one as I can’t stand that film and I’m sorry I ever tried to watch it. Cage is also fan-fcuking-tastic in Lord of War. I thought he was pretty cool as that demonic-thingy that turns to a skull and catches fire and rides around on a motorcycle saving the world. Or something like that. Whatever. Needless to say, I dig Cage. Especially now.

The thing about Pig that I find sooooo cool is 1) its originality (even though it takes place one of the most unoriginal places in the universe) and 2) the title is a give-away about what this movie is about–and it wasn’t hard for wosrt-moi to figure that out pretty early on (hint: overcooked pasta = a country of overcooked stupid people). It’s also about the pig in everyone that is subject to the mediocrity/mendacity of a place-in-time where nothingness and superficiality and submissiveness rule everything because of greed and dollar worship. This movie is about how one person was able to find a way out of $hit but because everyone else (EVERYONE) can’t find their way out he has to return. And so. Cage’s character has to return to this world of $hit $hit $hit only to find out that nothing changes except now all that non-change has killed a pig that he didn’t even need to hunt truffles. The pig was just the best human replacement friend he had.

Consume to survive, baby.


Rant on.


Search For Mother

Not sure when this worst-thought first came to worst-moi, dear worst-reader. It’s a recent thought though, within the past year or three I’m sure. This thought has been percolating in a corner of my worst-mind as though it were a distant memory suppressed. It’s certainly been magnified since last summer. Indeed. Last summer is when I lost Mother. Oh don’t worry. She’s still alive. But lost she is all the same. And so. This morning. While walking Beckett, the killer pug, I happened across my favourite dog walking friend and I inquired as to his thoughts on the film Rollerball (1975). The reason for my inquiry–beyond the fact that he’s quite the film buff–has to do with the wife of Jonathan in the movie. With that in worst-mind, how bout a quick summary.

Spoiler alert

Jonathan (played by James Caan) is the world’s most famous Rollerball player. Rollerball is a violent, Roman gladiator-like sport that involves a ball that is ejected out of cannon onto a circular roller skating rink. The object of the game is to catch the cannon ball and then score a goal with it. As its champion, Jonathan is facing both his retirement and the reality of (his) life that evolves around this game. The movie is pretty abrupt in telling us from the beginning that Rollerball is more than just a game, though. For example. The players of the game and the audience represent the working class. The ruling class, on the other hand, is made up of those who own and control the game. In this dystopian world there is nothing but Rollerball–except a reference or three to some extreme bourgeois, elitist behaviour, i.e. the tree burning scene, which I’ll get to in a sec. There’s also a bit of this-that regarding the up-n-coming computer age. But before I get too bogged down with all that…

Because of Jonathan’s popularity the ruling elite want to martyr him. As the story progresses, each game results in Jonathan resorting to not only winning (at all costs) but also fighting-the-man at all costs, even as each game becomes more and more violent. Hence the drama and suspense that Hollywood does best. In the end, the corporate elites fail to kill Jonathan. Instead his symbolism has been raised to the highest level which may or may not represents fighting-the-man. I guess. As the credits roll Jonathan skates around the Rollerball rink as the ultimate champion. Who wins what? I have no idear. Luckily there was never a sequel to this movie.

With that worst-summary behind us, what’s going on with this movie and worst-writer’s worst-thoughts about Mother? Well, don’t you know, dear worst-reader, it’s a lot. For you see. The thought that stirred me the other night as I was thinking about my youth, rollerskating, my mother and, most important, how wives become mothers, I also started thinking about Jonathan’s wife, Ella (played by Maud Adams). Although I’m not sure what the original intention of Ella is/was in this story–keep in mind I’m writing all this based on my memory of having seen the movie in the late seventies at a drive-in–along with a few recent views of web posted vid-snippets. Anywho.

There is one very subtle and extremely important issue regarding Jonathan’s wife. First. Ella is now someone else’s wife even though through out the movie Jonathan clings to her. She is the protaganist love-interest, if you will. And even though she’s with someone else, there’s no jealousy or bitterness between her and Jonathan. In fact. I don’t recall there being a divorce. But I could be wrong on that one. But that doesn’t matter. There does seem to be lots of compassion and understanding between these two working class adults. Also. Guess who her new husband is? No. It’s not a rival Rollerball player. No. It’s not a famous and rich doctor. Oh wait. Did you say that she probably left the world’s greatest athlete for a movie star? Ok. That’s a good thought. But no. It’s wrong.

Ella’s new husband is no less than the owner of Jonathan’s Rollerball team. And he’s a really old, elitist white guy. Could this old elitist white guy be the answer to a woman wanting to marry a grown up man instead of haphazardly marrying a man-child that never grows up and out of (his) game-play? Wait. Scratch that. Move on.

This thing is, dear worst-reader, this old white guy isn’t just any Rollerball team owner. If I’m not mistaken, all the owners of all Rollerball teams are also CEOs of the worlds biggest corporations. But don’t worry, dear worst-reader. That’s not even the reason I found myself worst-thinking about Ella. Or is it?

As I posted in this worst-blog-post some time ago, there is a fight being fought for the world at large. This fight, don’t you know, isn’t a traditional fight. Nor is it a gladiatorial Rollerball game. For you see, dear worst-reader, there are fights being fought each day, every second of each day, and that fight involves Mother. Which begs this worst-question:

What came first, Mother or…?

Forgive me, dear worst-reader, if I’m treading on your chicken & egg answer-question. For we all know by now how and what the answer is to that one. Or? Indeed. That’s right. The egg came first! (There! Worst-writer said it.) But to the question of whether or not Mother came first and if she didn’t what did… Now we’re getting somewhere, aren’t we? Which brings me to the whole idear of Nature. Or it brings me to humanity’s hate of nature–especially nature as Mother. And how is this hate personified? If you haven’t seen it then go ahead and have a look on the #interwebnets at the tree burning scene from Rollerball. Here’s a link that may get your started. During this scene, in worst-writer’s humble opinion, something extremely important takes place. Here’s what goes down.

An elegantly clad group of elites exit a mansion’s garden terrace with champagne glasses in hand. They cross the patio and walk over a field of grass. When the camera finds them all together in the middle of green we see a woman in a red dress convincing a man in a tuxedo, with a gun, to let her have that gun. When she finally gets the gun she proceeds to shoot at a tree. After initially missing the tree she fights off those who would say they can shoot better. She then proceeds to shoot again and hits the tree. The tree immediately goes poof and burns bright orange and red and smokes. Immediately the camera focuses on a different woman who now has the gun and she proceeds to shoot another tree, this time hitting it with her first shot. Then another woman gets the gun and does the same thing to another tree. I can’t remember exactly how many shots were fired but I can remember that they were all fired by women, surrounded by cheering elitist men, and all the trees were set ablaze. There is a brief moment during this scene where the first woman who shot the tree seems to regret or question what’s she’s just done–but that scene passes toot-sweet.

Now. I’m sure there are a few things worst-written about this movie and the tree burning scene and that’s fine & good. I also think this is a very profound moment in the movie–even though it doesn’t really have any connection to the drama of Jonathan, Ella, Rollerball or worst-writer’s Mother. But. Then again. Here’s where it all might come together.

Has there ever been a clearer moment in time where the obviousness of humanity’s ill-ways was more apparent? (Than now?) Ill-ways being man’s fight against not only other men but nature itself? Hence the likes of Putin, #Trump and the lust of constitutionally ordained FREEDOM TO BE STUPID? Again. If I recall from the movie Rollerball–as it’s been so long since I’ve seen it–Ella is taken away from Jonathan in order to control him and hence his popularity, his game play, his effect on the lower classes. But Ella didn’t leave him by her own accord. She left him because she was coerced by the corporate elites who had threatened Jonathan’s life. She loved him so much that she gave herself, if you will, to the biblical. She gave herself willingly to be coveted by a brother’s keeper. Is this the true fate of man vs nature? Is there a better example of humanity going against nature than to portray a woman (potentially a/the Mother) going against her nature–which may or may not be LOVE? That means, potentially, Rollerball is a movie about how to avoid not only corporate elites ruling the world but also, maybe, it is an allegory to help us figure out the true meaning of love, sacrifice, commitment and NATURE. Or. Wait. Maybe…

No. Scratch that. Moving on.

Yeah. Bag that. The friggin movie is about those damn trees and the gun that turned them into poof the friggin magic dragon run amok. And it’s about macho men doing their thing in sporting events that get men laid thereby leaving women to fend for themselves–until they get a better offer. Don’t you know. I guess. Yeah, baby.

And so. With that in worst-mind…

Rant on.


PS This is what happens when I can’t maintain my thoughts. When I let my worst-self get too far off subject. Oh well. At least I still know the difference between good vs #MAGA idiots.

Pseudo-Review and Long-Term Test: RPi4 As A Desktop PC

Worst-writer’s desktop

Today, dear worst-reader, it is time to take another look at worst-writer’s experience with a/the wonder of the tech world. I’m worst-writing, of course, about nothing other than my favourite computing platform the Raspberry Pi. Specifically. I’m reviewing today my trusty Raspberry Pi 4 after having fiddled with it for the past two years as a desktop alternative, among other uses. For those not in the know and at the risk of being a bit redundant, Raspberry Pi is, IMHO, the mostest tech hardware innovation since the #interwebnet itself. But don’t worry. I know. Some worst-readers think that the personal computer (Mac or PC) or the smart-phone or tablets or gaming or cloud computing, etc., should be included in any claim of great tech innovations. But I’ll leave that worst-argument for a different worst-post.

My setup

As far as my experience with single board computing (SBC) goes, I’ve currently got four Raspberry Pi’s in full-time use as media and/or audio players in my little townhouse. In other words, I’ve replaced ALL old-school tv receivers, radio, stereo, video, etc., with SBCs. Other than Raspberry Pi, I’m also using a RockPro64 SBC running Jellyfin media server. This device is also my home data server using Samba that includes 6TB of data storage. Along side that I have a Rock64 (the little brother of the RockPro64) running an ad-block server. Both these devices are from which is also a great SBC maker. Unfortunately, and once again, IMHO, Pine64 takes a backseat to Raspberry Pi when it comes ease of use, setup and software. But that’s neither here or there. These are all great devices. That worst-said. All my SBCs, except the RPi4 being worst-reviewed today, are running linux and I manage them headless via SSH. But let me not get too far off subject.

The device I’m pseudo-reviewing today is a Raspberry Pi 4b with 4gb of RAM. It is one of the first iterations of this board, which also means that there is a new iteration that can do a bit more $hits & giggles. There’s also a Raspberry Pi keyboard-computer that came out two years ago which has the same specs as mine, but don’t worry, I won’t be getting into product iteration details here. Or will I? #Nomatter. Let’s move on.

I’ve been testing my RPi4 as a desktop PC ersatz for a while now. In other words. Although my daily computing driver is a 2017 12″ Macbook with i5 CPU and accelerated 500gb HDD–which cost around sixteen hundred Euros new–I’ve often wondered, since the day I started fiddling with Raspberry Pi’s, if I could actually quit Apple (and thereby quit standard, old-school PCs) and use an SBC instead. I mean. Heck. Come on. Even with all the covid BS and subsequent economic downturn and supply chain issues, inflation, greed-galore, etc., SBCs cost a fraction of a traditional PC. As I worst-write this post and, although they are pretty much out of stock in Germany, a Raspberry Pi is still worth its weight in gold compared to my MacBook. Indeed. As far as old school desktop PC work goes, I think I’m finally coming around to accepting what may ultimately be my future in computing. In fact. I’ve fiddled enough with Raspberry Pi to learn, in a pinch, I could even make the likes of an RPi3b a total and functional desktop device. Worst or best case scenario considered, one just has to curb some enthusiasm–as the saying goes–and these things work like a charm even if they are a bit slow. The only serious issue one has to consider when making this leap is the tech learning curve compared to old-school computing, which boils down to convenience. More on that in a sec.

Which OS

I’ve tested three operating systems for regular use while considering the RPi4 as a desktop device. The first is Raspberry Pi OS, formerly known as Raspbian (if I’ve got the vernacular correct). The second OS is Manjaro. And the third OS I’ve tried is DietPi. Long story short, you can forget DietPi as a desktop alternative. It’s just too cumbersome. As a headless device, though, it’s all I use. That said, as of the 64bit version of Raspberry Pi OS, it is the clear winner. The only reason that Manjaro loses out in this race boils down to my choice of keyboard and Bluetooth. I’m using an old Bluetooth Apple keyboard. I’ve NEVER been able to get this keyboard to work consistently with Manjaro or DietPi. And let me tell you, I’ve since learned a thing or three about configuring via bluetoothctl. That is, if/when I have to restart the OS–which is often–I have to go through the whole reconnect thingy with the keyboard. With the recent 64bit upgrade to Raspberry Pi OS, though, it seems to connect directly, #nomatter how many times I restart. That means I don’t have to worry about replacing my trusty old Mac keyboard that I’ve been using for the better part of ten years.

As far as software, looks & feel, Manjaro is the clear winner. It’s impressive what the Manjaro team has done. It doesn’t win based on the amount of software available, though, or its ease of use. The interface of Manjaro–especially the Gnome and KDE versions–are simply brilliant. In fact, Manjaro is so good it made me give up on Ubuntu, hence the reason it’s not in the running for my favourite Raspberry Pi OS. For whatever reason, Ubuntu has always been the most bloated and slowest OS I’ve tried.

As far as interface and design goes Raspberry Pi OS is totally functional. It’s not as pretty as Manjaro but it certainly gets the job done. Although its software repository is borderline obnoxious to use and it reminds me of everything I hate about computing, once you get used to it, it works. But. Then again. Beggars (or hunters for free software) can’t be choosy, eh. The simple fact is, for worst-writer, after two years of fiddling, the recent Raspberry Pi OS 64bit on the RPi4 is killer good. It works like any OS for real world computing and that’s pretty impressive stuff.

Is this thing a viable PC ersatz?

Yes. Basta!

The learning curve

As indicated, the only thing that should hold anyone back from using a Pi as a desktop PC is getting it to work consistently, which in and of itself might be the only reason to not use it. Considering how much it costs, though, should also make this decision a no brainer. Even though flashing a micro SD card is fairly straight forward, maintaining the card w/ backups and data recovery is cumbersome. For what ever reason and error on my part, I’m sure, I’ve lost two SD cards to data corruption. I attribute that to the constant requirement to do hard restarts every now and then. The Debian based Linux kernel works like a charm but it still has ALL the quirks and challenges of Linux. For example. Accessing the software repository leads to the majority of crashes and restarts I’ve experienced. I have no idea why but I’m sure it all has to do with my lack of linux abilities. Configuring and personalising the interface is also a challenge and I pretty much refrain from fiddling with it anymore. Until the recent 64Bit update, though, maintaining OS updates was also a challenge. Now it works like a charm. But that’s probably all higher tech stuff that normal users shouldn’t be bothered with. Word processing, note taking, file management, connecting to my network, surfing the #interwebnets works flawlessly, albeit sometimes a bit slow.


Considering the one-way greed street that is the tech industry–where nothing seems to change in the right direction, as far as I’m concerned–it’s a wonder to me that the Raspberry Pi isn’t more wide spread as a desktop alternative. Perhaps its keyboard design will change that. Even at its current inflated price, though, it’s certainly worth consideration. Hopefully when this stupid economic and covid crisis is over the Raspberry Pi foundation can get back on the development good-ship and up the ante with upgrading its specs. Not sure how that can be done, though, with its 5v power consumption and credit card size. It is entertaining to watch videos of guys out there adding water cooling to coincide with over-clocking. Which begs the question: am I ready to replace my Mac for this thing? Maybe not right now because I can afford a new Mac. But what is clear, as far as tech in my house goes, there’s nothing that can beat these little things.

Rant on.


Dead Languages, Undying Sovereign Worship


Worst book review: The Writing of the Gods

It’s been a long time (twenty years), dear worst-reader, since I last visited the British Museum. Among its various treasures are two things that have always stood out for worst-moi from all-things stolen in the name of colonialism and monarchial bull$hit galore. The first was having a look at a copy of Beowulf. Not sure why but this ancient poem, which may or may not be one of the first novels ever written, has always fascinated me. I mean. Isn’t it a book about how to get people to worship you? With that in worst-mind, I’m not sure if I dig Grendel more than Beowulf–but that’s neither here nor there.

The second thing that fascinated me in the British Museum is the Rosetta Stone. After giving it a good glance or three I recall asking a tour guide how ancient Egyptian was spoken. The tour guide proceeded to point to the stone and the three text/languages that are inscribed on it. Yeah, can see that, I thought to my worst-self. But what did their language sound like, I asked. I don’t recall the tour guide’s answer but I’m sure that’s because she didn’t have one. Even though I haven’t done much reading about the Rosetta Stone since then, I do recall a conversation here there, perhaps at a silly dinner party or an after theatre cocktail gathering, where I tried to question again and again: how did ancient Egyptians actually talk? What did their language sound like? How were all those slaves controlled by means other than coercion, violence, advertising, drugs, food, etc., to build those damn pyramids? How did the builders of those damn pyramids talk to each other about things like logistics, organisation, measurements, and their better-than-thou food and drugs, etc.?

While on $hits&giggles regarding all-worst-things better-than-thou, allow this little worst-aside regarding a modern version of the uselessness of pharaohs aka kings and queens: why must humanity still live with the uselessness of hereditary monarchs? In that worst-vein, go ahead and ask worst-moi what I think of the queen of engaland’s latest jubilee. What a crock of…

When I first heard about The Writing of the Gods by Edward Dolnick I didn’t give it much thought. Who needs to read (or write) another book about the Rosetta Stone? But then I heard an interview where Dolnick started blathering about Napoleon and how the Stone was found. Ok, I thought. Maybe I could brush up a bit on the subject. I kinda dig all-things Napoleon, don’t you know. After giving the example text a read, I immediately bought the book and two days later I finished it. Yeah, it’s an easy read. Unfortunately–and thanks to the author–I’m no closer to knowing how ancient Egyptians spoke to one another. The thing is, dear worst-reader, hieroglyphs don’t provide any hint of phonetics. This form of picture writing doesn’t have any vowels and consonants–at least not as we know them. Of course, there are various resources out there in/on the #Interwebnets that give examples of how some dead languages are spoken. Heck, I got a thrill and chill during the movie The Mummy as I recall a few ancient Egyptian languages were spoken in it. But there’s something missing in all the research, academia and Hollywood regarding ancient Egypt. For isn’t there more than just transcribing of human thought that makes up how humans converse? Considering where we (humanity) come from and where we currently are, wouldn’t it be fascinating but/and not surprising to find out that not much has changed? Wouldn’t it be a hoot to finally figure out that fighting the man, beheading the man, ridding life of arbitrary monarchs, despots and THE FREEDOM TO BE STUPID is no different today than it was when you or me could worst-$hit in a cave or work for some dickwad rich guy cause he gets a hard-on by controlling everything and everyone while building a worthless tomb for his fat-arse to lay in after he’s dead? Yeah. Or maybe not. Nomatter.

The Writing Of The Gods is a great read and I’m glad I invested the time in it. Dolnick provides a concise and precise history of the Rosetta Stone that includes its (colonial) discovery via Napoleon (during his downfall) and the subsequent competition to translate it, which, it seems, the French won–even though the thing still gleefully rests in the wrong country and, of course, wrong museum. But. Again. That’s neither here nor there. If you’ve read something about the Rosetta Stone already, I’m not sure this book is gonna do much for ya. But it is a fun read.

Rant on.


American Dystopia And The Consumption Of Golf Balls Through Garden Hoses

Alternate worst-title: Back in the day you could play musical cars (as in: musical chairs) at a great drive-in movie.

Disclaimer: this worst-post contains spoiler alerts for an old movie and may (or may not) be NSFW.

Back in the day, dear worst-reader, when I was still tuned in to TV, as in, you know, when I actually watched network or cable TV or even went to the cinema, I remember watching, for the third or fourth time Invasion of the Body Snatchers. Not the original, don’t you know. I’ve always preferred the 1978 version–the best version. One of the things I remember about that particular viewing–other than I had to watch it in German–was that I had also re-seen a bunch of other–let’s call them–70s dystopian thrillers around the same time. I don’t know what the issue was that caused me to watch so many old movies that may or may not be about American dystopia but let’s rack it up to Germany finding ways to allocate nighttime TV programming to the masses and/or bodies not finding better ways to sleep through the night.

The thing is. I had just moved to Germany and, even though I didn’t have a TV in my little flat, having often hooked up–you know, in that forever search for –what do girls call it?–love–everyone I met did have a TV. So. Between flirting, conjugating, waking up in the middle of the night to piss and/or continue with her, I watched whatever late night movie (on her cheap couch) that was available and when things were really good I even got some really great head until we both fell asleep, she in a warm cum soaked lap, and me with my head blown out the rear.


It took till my expatriation in Germania that I finally started to grasp the meaning of #Americant dystopian thrillers like Soylent Green, Logan’s Run, Planet of the Apes, Mickey Mouse Takes Paris, etc. No. Seriously. I saw these films while in a drunken stupor, high on fresh-flesh and within my first year of living in consume-to-survive #Eurowasteland. Of course, the one film that stood out, because I had already seen it a number of times, was Invasion of the Body Snatchers. Yeah. During my youth and college days Invasion of the Body Snatchers was shown on some channel late at night or at some cheap cinema here or there. And why not? What a great movie, eh, dear worst-reader! And as far as my experience with the movie goes, there is something aphrodisiac about sci-fi dystopian horror thrillers–and chicks on the run or, at the least, Looking for Mr. Goodbar. But on that note, I probably should (but won’t) die-gress.

Flash to now. That’s right. I re-watched Invasion of the Body Snatchers the other night for the first time in about thirty years. Keep in mind, even though I have a fairly large ripped movie library–which I try to populate with old movies when I come across second-hand DVDs–I do not have Invasion of the Body Snatchers. And so. While arguing with my little family about what movie to watch on Easter Sunday evening, I managed to win the fight. And get this. Just like so many times before, I was enamoured with this movie–as though I had seen it for the first time. I couldn’t take my eyes off the screen. When everybody had to get up and take a pee or fill their wine glass–it is a two hour film–I remained silent and in awe, transfixed on the paused screen image of Donald Sutherland, Brooke Adams, the cinematography, Spock! I can’t say enough good things about this movie, dear worst-reader. I mean. Is it me or should this movie be up there with Citizen Kane, The Third Man, Casablanca, Austin Powers? Okay. Ok. Forget that with Austin Powers. Just kidding.

What is it about these old movies that makes them so good? Is it the lack of CGI? Is it the mix of brilliant acting, direction and editing? Or is it the times? You know. As in. Man-o-man am I sick of high budget comic book movies that I’ve had to watch over the past twenty or so years. Or. Didn’t all that bull$hit about conspiracy theory really get its mojo on during the 1970s and no one can deal with it today–in movies? Hence, all the comic book movies with über-huge budgets that don’t really have much to say. Am I wrong.

For those worst-reading this but also born on or around the millennium, the 1970s were the f’n bomb in #Americant when it comes to two things. First. Oil. Yeah. Oil was scarce–or at least they (THEY!) made it out to be scarce. And second. Movies–on the whole–kinda sucked. But let me not get too much on about sucky movies from the 1970s. Smokey and the Bandit anyone? On the other hand, one of the reasons some older movies are so much better than newer ones is because, well, the newer ones have nothing new to say. Again. Am I wrong.

While I’m on the subject…

Everything that is $hitty today, as in, Republicans, greed-mongering old people, über-stupid graduating from college and fail-upwards-ness being the new career mantra, that whole mess started in the 1970s. Seriously. It did. For. Don’t you know, dear worst-reader, the high and the party and the fun-fun of post WW2 was over by the 1970s. Indeed. The 1970s was about no-fun, the re-establishment of patriarchy (as men began their fight in earnest against feminism) and, of course, making $$$$ at any cost. It’s no coincidence that the 1970s lead to the election of a two-bit actor who’s best role was hiding all his personal hate and greed and racism and white supremacy, which he learned by-the-buy from his adopted state of California and the career that did not choose him: acting. Again. For those not in the know. If the 1970s weren’t as fcuked up as they were, there might not have been a Ronald dip$hit Reagan. But on that note I must die-gress.

Which brings me back to the topic at hand. I re-watched Invasion of the Body Snatchers the other night and was just as tickled as the first time I saw it. Well, almost just as tickled. Reason? Boy does this movie bring back memories. And I mean worst-writer memories, baby. Are you ready?

I was in my late teens when I first saw Invasion of the Body Snatchers, which was right around when it was released. And, although I was afeared more of suspense than of horror, this movie subverted all that on account, as I was to be told, it was more of a… And this was the first time I had ever heard such nomenclature before. This movie was not a horror movie. It was not a sci-fi invasion movie either. It was a… dystopian thriller.

Seventeen year old worst-moi said at the time:

A what?

Two things happened that coincided with the first time I saw Invasion of the Body Snatchers. First. It didn’t scare me. But it did thrill me. Second. I think this movie was a wake-up call. Indeed. It was my wake up call to digging the idear of the dystopia I was living in. At least that’s what she called it. It was also a movie that could be viewed in various states of mind without which you don’t have to shut off your brain. Get my drift, dear worst-reader? No? Wait. Cancel that. Let me move on.

Everyone called her Beka. That was short for Rebeka Tabatha Short. Beka was my first older woman. Although years later I kinda knew she was lying about her age, at the time she told me she was thirty four. (She was at least thirty-nine, eh.) Of course, I didn’t care how old she was. Reason? She could suck a golf ball through ten feet of garden hose–and she could do it ten times a day, no matter when, no matter where.

Beka was the assistant manager of a fitness club I worked at and she was also a licensed masseuse. For those not in the worst-know, I worked two jobs to save up money for college back then. The first was tending bar in Washington, DC. That was my night job. My second job was at a kinda uppity fitness club just south of the city where a lot of really, really, really expensive upper middle class women were trying to keep their product in order. But that’s not the reason I worked there. I worked there because it paid well above minimum wage–and all I had to do for that was dance around a room providing MILFs aerobic excercise. Anywho.

Becka lived in DC only a few blocks from the restaurant where I tended bar at night. Because I was all into saving money at the time, I would drive to the fitness club, park my car, work my shift, and if our schedules worked out, Becka would take me to my night time job saving me the gas money. When I finished there she allowed me to stay on her couch till the morning when she would drive me back to the fitness club. This relationship went on for about six months. Of course, only after a short initial period, I no longer stayed on her couch. Unless a late night movie caught us.

We watched a lot of late night movies. The movies we watched were the really old ones, too. Most were also black & white movies. You know, Frankenstein, Dracula, Creature From The Black Lagoon, etc. But then, one day, after a Sunday shift we worked together but I wasn’t scheduled to work that night at the bar, she asked if I’d like to join her and some friends and go to a drive-in. She even added that it was her treat. I agreed but made it clear that she would still need to bring me back to my car in the morning. She smiled and winked. I then joined her and a few other people/couples in various cars and we went to a drive-in cinema to watch the recently released Invasion of the Body Snatchers.

That evening I learned three things. Beka was a divorcee and her former husband was a great guy and he loved movies and he was there with a new date. The second thing I learned was that I could come four times in two hours at the behest of three different women, who went from car to car, and all I had to do was stay in the back seat of one car. The third thing I learned is that after a movie, when smart people think about it, they can come up with some pretty interesting words to label it. As in. Everyone from the group that I was with that night agreed that Invasion of the Body Snatchers is not a horror movie, nor is it a sci-fi movie, but it is a criticism of where America is going: it is a movie about (our) dystopia.

But enough about worst-writer’s history of cheap love affairs and/or (intellectual) seeds that would lead to the tree of my expatriation. Or. Am I wrong.

Since, dear worst-reader, you’re obviously here for whatever else I learned from my various viewings of Invasion of the Body Snatchers, here are a few issues that stand out for me, even after this most recent viewing:

  • How can anyone sympathise with Americans being turned by alien gel-icky into automatons when a city bureaucrat opens the movie (Matthew Bennell/Donald Sutherland) with a nasty control/authoritarian schtick saying it’s not a caper it’s a rat turd and thereby terrorising a San Francisco French restaurant?
  • How is it that Elizabeth Driscoll/Brooke Adams is able to bring home an alien flower that ONLY infects her fiancé when they both sleep at the same time, in the same bed?
  • Why is it that the only malfunction of the pods came when the so-called hero of the movie kicked the pod that was next to the homeless guy who played the banjo and had a nice boxer (dog) as a pet, i.e. the dog with the human face?
  • Was it really necessary to have Robert Duvall play a Catholic priest on a swing at a playground full of kids? Oh wait. It was the 70s. They could get away with it back then!
  • At the end of the movie, the moment where Donald Sutherland is shown to be one of them, is it possible that he isn’t but is acting like one in order to save his own skin?
  • Leonard Nimoy is a great actor.
  • Finally. Did Donald Sutherland wear the same sweater in two movies? I mean, he did film Animal House around the same time. (See pics above.)

Actually. The (other) truth is. And I don’t mean this to toot my own horn any louder than I already do in this worst-blog, but on the/my first viewing of this movie I ended up that night with my first older girlfriend coming a fourth time after her former husband dropped us off at her place. That’s also when I first learned the word insatiable, swinging and there’s no such thing as jealously if there need not be. Oh. And if you’re ever at a drive-in and you see girls moving from one car to the other, you now know why.

Rant on.



Pseudo-Review: Beamer Baby Boom

Title two: Review of the LG Cinebeam 1400 Lumen Wonder

As you may or may not know, dear worst-reader, I’m a typing nut. That’s right. Even though I’m not all-that interested in what’s been typed (by worst-moi), as long as I’m doing it, life’s almost good. The only other thing that’s better in life than typing… Wait for it. Wait for it. Are you guessing what I’m gonna say? Well, you’re wrong. It ain’t xes (spelled backwards). Only riding a motorcycle is better than typing, which I haven’t done for twenty years. Wow. Life can suck, eh! Anywho. What am I on about today?

Last summer as the COVID b.s. was hitting the $hit-fan here in good old Germania, my better half came up with the idear, even though we’re not allowed to have a TV in our living, that she was now willing to entertain a beamer–as long as it’s not hooked up to cable. For that’s the thing, dear worst-reader, we don’t watch TV. Wait. That’s ain’t quite right. Here, let me try that again.

Since the get-go in this relationship, we both decided that we don’t want any sort of TV connection and we especially don’t want a TV in our living room. As time has past, though, we have become more and more accustomed to all-things #Interwebnets. Meaning, of course, we watch movies and TV shows, we just don’t want to watch them via something that would/could be installed in our living room–that takes up space, kills time and uglyfies life. And so. That’s right. Our living room is a place where most of our reading and music listening takes place. At least it did, to my worst-surprise, until COVID and my better-half came up with the idear that it’s time to “entertain” a beamer.

Beamer of choice from the get-go has been one from LG. Reason? The bulb. The main mechanism of a beamer (projector) is how it produces the necessary light beam. This particular series of beamers uses a lighting source that is supposed to last for thirty-thousand hours. Other sources of lighting for these projectors have only hundreds of hours of capacity before the bulb has to be changed. An expense that sometimes nears the cost of the device itself. According to the limited research I did, including price shopping, that pretty much sealed the deal for the brand we ended up buying. But then I had to learn about the whole “lumen” thing. My better-half set a budget for such a device at about a thousand Euros. That may sound like a lot but I can assure it’s not. Also. Being el-cheap-o, I kinda knew I could get one for cheaper than that because I also knew that we didn’t need 4k video and 1080p would suffice. What to buy, what to buy, what to buy.

Our first-try was the pico beamer from LG that produced 600 Lumens and cost about 500€. I used it for about two weeks and although it wasn’t very bright, I was impressed with what it could do. Also, it was about the size of a Mac Mini which meant I could easily hang it from my bookshelf. But I ended up sending it back because of the limitations of wife-approval and wall space (we have flat, white walls so there is no need for a screen). The biggest problem I had with the pico beamer was that it couldn’t properly “keystone” the image it was projecting. Also. In the end my better-half was kinda peeved that I didn’t spend more money. Can you believe that?

Of the 1080p beamers being offered in the product range, I bought the next one up which just happened to be on sale from 1000 to 750€. It is a 1400 Lumen projector the size of a child’s shoebox and, of course, weighs a bit more than the pico device. As you can see from the pics above, though, the jimmied photography equipment I use to attach it to our bookshelf works just fine supporting it. Although it offers limited up-down, right-left keystone-ing, it is enough to project quite a large image on a perpendicular wall that is about ten feet away, which is another thing the pico couldn’t do. The difference between 600 and 1400 Lumens is also significant, which means, unlike the pico device, this one we can use in daylight. Meaning, unless we have bright sunny weather, we don’t have to pull down any shades to see the image. Evening movie watching with this thing is pretty impressive too when you consider the five figure cost of a hundred inch flat screen TV.

After just over a half year of use, I’m still very impressed with this beamer. Connected to an AppleTV4, where my better-half can access her German TV news and shows via apps, it works great. That means it’s also connected to our home network so we can project lots and lots of movies from our media server. But more important, when it’s not in use, we don’t have an empty black screen on a table top or attached to a wall that always begs to be turned on and thereby kill beautiful empty, minimalist space. Oh, and if you’re curious about all the trickery LG offers in this device, you’ll have to go else where. I’ve not messed with any of it. It’s literally only a screen for the AppleTV. As long as that works, I don’t give a hoot about the rest.

Rant (and consume) on.


Berry Hifi Galore

This (worst)post was updated March, 2021. (Strike throughs.)

Title 2: No such thing as Hifiberry overkill. Or?

Gotta say a few worst-words about my Hifiberry collection, dear worst-reader. Not sure if you can tell, but I’m a Raspberry Pi fan. I love these these little SBCs (single board computers) and when combined with DACs, IMHO, there’s no better way to enjoy audio without breaking the bank. Speaking of which, this equipment allows me to avoid krapp like Apple’s HomePod or whatever branded ridiculously priced streaming device, sound bar, etc. Also. As far as I’m concerned, Bluetooth ain’t quite there yet when it comes to quality audio streaming. On the other hand, I am an Apple fanboy. That means, I always have to compromise something when it comes to compatibility. I also have some legacy audio equipment that includes active and passive speakers, plenty of cables, connectors, and few really cheap Chinese DACs (smsl, etc.) The thing is, even though these devices are cheap and require a bit of maintenance, they do not lack in audio quality. But let’s move on.

As you can see from the pics above I currently have four RPi’s with HifiBerry DAC hats. I use them mainly as media players or streaming endpoints. If you can do some basic linux stuff, you’re in the green with these babies. Although there is a swath of audio DACs from other makers for Raspberry Pi, I’ve never bothered with any of them, so this is obviously a one-sided pseudo-review. With that in worst-mind, let’s run down my use cases.

Let’s start with the old and weak, shall we. In order to make use of my oldest RPi3 (from 2014), which was collecting dust in a drawer, I ordered the HifiBerry analog DAC with the 3.5mm headphone jack. It’s running HifiberryOS, which makes it a streaming endpoint (if I’ve got the tech vernacular correct). I use it mainly as the audio output for my AppleTV4k via shairport. The AppleTV drives a 1080p Beamer. Connected to the phone jack of the HifiBerry DAC–because the onboard headphone jack of the RPi really, really does suck–is a pair of Bose Companion 20 powered speakers. These are my trusty play-anywhere, use-anytime speakers for the past fifteen or so years. These old Bose’s are perfect for TV (instead of a stupid soundbar) or desktop PC use. Heck they even suffice for outdoor use if a party or a cook-out needs tunes. Also. Keep in mind. I live in a very rectangular townhouse with an inner loft-like atrium that is surround by kitchen, dinning area and living room. The living room and dinning room merge at a corner of the atrium. The main wall at the end of my living room, with bookshelves, is where I have what I consider my music speakers. Hence, I have a room with two disparate sound systems. More on that in a sec. The beamer projects on a perpendicular wall. As you can see in the pic below, the Bose speakers are on a high wall table and they project whatever audio comes out of my AppleTV, which is also hidden away atop my bookshelves.

A second RPi3 has a HifiBerry AMP2 DAC hat also running HifiberryOS and functions as a streaming endpoint that I feed with iPhone, Mac or iPad. It’s currently my only remaining Volumio device hidden away behind books at the top of my bookshelves (see pic below). It provides my living room with… you guessed it: music only. Even though I love the old Bose Companion speakers, they are nothing compared to the AudioEngine P4s that resonate beautifully in the most expensive bookshelves I’ve ever owned. The reason this is my only Volumio device is because 1) my wife’s not ready to learn new player software and 2) it works better than HifiBerryOS when it comes to accessing SMB shares. More on that in a sec. The RPi and AMP2 drives the AudioEngine P4 speakers with enough quality to make me grin ear to ear every morning while drinking earl grey and waking up to jazz.

Btw. Morning jazz is a worst-writer ritual.

My third RPi3 has a Hifiberry DAC+Pro and is a Plex media player OSMC player. It’s attached to a flatscreen 40″ TV in my work room (not pictured). For audio it is connected to a TEAC (ice powered) integrated amp via RCA cables and powers Pioneer BS22LR speakers. I think it’s my second oldest Raspberry Pi (from 2015 or 2016). When I started using Plex back in the day, btw, I thought it would be my streamer and player of choice. Turns out better players software abounds. And, if you ask worst-moi, Plex has become too complex. (Pun intended.) Plus I hate subscription software. Anywho. I mainly use Plex OSMC with RPi and with AppleTV for for viewing my ripped movie and TV collection. When playing music I simply stream to it via OSMC shairport. Btw. All my media is stored on a simple samba server The Plex server is on a Pine64 RockPro64 which is in my basement. This is my minimalist, go-to, as audiophile-as-it-gets, setup. I absolutely love it.

The last RPi in my collection is an RPi4. I’ve been using it mostly as a testbed and/or fiddle device. It has the HifiBerry DAC+Pro and is currently connected to my TEAC’s second RCA inputs. It’s currently running HifiBerryOS and I’m really digging how it functions as a streaming endpoint. The RPi4 is the most powerful device here and it shows–especially when loading SMB shares or fiddling with operating systems. I’ve been switching between HifiBerryOS and Volumio with it trying to figure out which player I prefer–and HifiberryOS is winning on account Volumio seems to be going down a path of greed-mongering. More on that in a sec. What’s become very clear to me while fiddling around with all this stuff is that the day is nigh when these little things will easily replace modern desktop PCs. As far as media players go… they’re already the bomb.

HiFiBerryOS vs Volumio?

My only gripe with with RPi + HifiBerry is the software. I’m still, kinda, in the experimental stage of how to setup all these devices. Although I would like something similar to what iTunes used to be, I stopped using iTunes years ago because of proprietary issues, including the fact that Apple doesn’t support FLAC. Currently I’m pretty happy with webradio and direct streaming via shairport. The only thing missing is to be able to do it all with one software. But which one? I’ve got HifiBerry OS on two devices, Volumio on one device and Plex on the others (including my basement Pine64 server). Anywho…

I’m starting to dig HifiBerryOS more and more. Even though HifiBerryOS on the older RPi3 seems to have fewer capabilities than when on the RPi4 The OS works so well with shairport (open source version of Apple’s Airport streaming software) that I’m actually streaming more and more music from my Mac and/or iPad–as opposed to accessing music via SMB shares and Volumio, which I can’t getting running on HifiberryOS anyway. Update: using info provided here, I managed to get HifiBerryOS connected to my SMB shares. It works like a charm! Hopefully they’ll fix the bugs soon. Right now I’m streaming The True Loves Live Performance from KEXP (YouTube) and it is rocking’ cool!

It’s time to admit the obvious. I’m becoming more and more disappointed with Volumio, which has been my go-to music player for a few years now. Also, since Volumio has decided to go down the cost-path of subscription fees in order to monetise, plus it thinks it’s OK to charge for Bluetooth access…. Come on Volumio, subscription fees suck. And how is it that HifiBerry doesn’t charge for its Bluetooth access?! Just charge a flat fee for your software. Or not! But heed this: as a streaming endpoint, I’m really digging HifiBerryOS.

IMHO. Raspberry Pi and Hifiberry have really done a number on an industry that is obsessed with cheating consumers. Am I referring to the so-called audiophile industry? Or just the Denon and NAD makers? Yeah. Something like that. What’s important is that if you don’t want to be owned or miss out on modern music consumption and have a bit of tech knowledge plus you are willing to fiddle around with opensource software…?

This stuff is a no-brainer. Nuff said.

Rant (and listen) on.


Robot Vacuum Worst-Best Sucking Things Up

To avoid all my worst-writing and get straight to the pseudo-review, just scroll down a bit. Otherwise, good luck.

This consume-to-survive world/life is gettin’ to me, covid n’all. You too, dear worst-reader? I mean. Just the other day, after purchasing another one of them fancy-pants robot vacuum cleaners, after my previous über-expensive robot vacuum cleaner stopped working, I thought: what will be the last thing I ever buy? I mean. You know. Before I die, what will be my last purchase of this life? Which begs the worst-question: should it be something big and exuberant and gaudy? Even though the thought of buying a sailing yacht as a last purchase has crossed my mind, I’m starting to reconsider. For you see. Don’t you know. The dream-purchase of a yacht is two fold. First, it would be used to sail out to the middle of the Atlantic, once and for all. Once there I would hang out for a few days dancing and prancing in a state of glorious inebriation. After that I would pull the plug. You know, the plug at the bottom of every boat’s hull. And while the boat is filling with water, I will dawn my scuba gear and jump over board. While still on the surface, I’ll watch my last life-purchase sink and shed my last tears. Just as the hull breaches the water’s surface I commence to join it by grabbing the mast but continue breathing with my scuba gear as we go down. Now. Get this, dear worst-reader. This is my death fantasy combined with my last consume-to-survive purchase. And so. I commence a rapid descent along side my yacht and thereby watch my depth gauge. Once I surpass forty-five or so meters I then give way to my fate and submit to nitrogen narcosis, which, in my case, as I learned during a fifty meter dive in the Red Sea in 2010, sends me into a hissy-fit of giggling. Of course, since I enjoyed all those dreams of yachting across oceans for so long, it’s my hope that those same dreams will accompany me as my body submits to rapture of the deep. Without struggle or stress, the chemical imbalance of oxygen in my blood stream, at depth, sees to it that the lights finally go out and time stops and the misery that is a life that can give way to the likes of #Trump and #MAGA and the demise of my beloved & missed united mistakes of #Americant… to fascism… is finally over. Good night sweet prince.

All kidding aside. Since I ain’t never gonna afford no yacht, how ’bout we make my last purchase something akin to a last meal. But would mine include ice cream? Certainly not. It would be all about blue popcorn and watching the tale of a salamander as it wiggles (and giggles) hanging out of the beak of a horned rabbit… with Monty Python pointy teeth.


Today, dear worst-reader, we pseudo-review our new robot vacuum cleaner, the Neato D7. It is replacing our old iRobot 866 which we purchased in early 2016–or was it late 2015? Needless to say, I was very disappointed that our iRobot died. I’ve since ticked it away via that online auction service as “defect”, don’t you know. Good riddance. In fact, after a few years of use and being a device that I thought would hold up for a few more years, I can gladly admit that iRobot is on my shit-list. Indeed. The one good thing about being able to afford consume-to-survive purchase like this, is that I can also express my deep, deep disappointment in the corporate misnomer that some stuff that you think is quality ain’t really so. More on that in a sec.

The Neato D7 cleans better than the iRobot. It’s also quieter and is easier to maintain. The most important thing, though, is the Neato is much, much smarter than the iRobot. Although the Neato software sucks buckyballs, I’m slowly adapting to its inadequacies. That’s what software is all about, or? It’s never about what software can do. No. It’s always about the compromises made when using it. Am I wrong, Microsoft, Apple, etc.? Anywho. As of the writing of this worst-post Neato’s software cannot be used by multiple devices, i.e. two separate iPhones. Also. The iPhone app crashes here and there. The app interface reminds me of lost Windows 95 sys admins who may or may not have jumped ship. But before I get too far off subject. The first downer I noticed about the inadequate software is that it doesn’t run on two different iPhones. Well, it does. But then it breaks things. That is, when my wife tries to control the robot with her iPhone and then I try to access it later with my iPhone, the device becomes disoriented and is unable find its home base. Another downer about the software is that room mapping on multiple floors only works if you have multiple home bases, i.e. charging stations on each floor. WTF!


Oh yeah. The price. The Neato was on a special end of summer offer for 370,-€. Compared to the dumb-device cost of the iRobot from 2015 @ 699,-… that kinda makes the Neato a frickin‘ steal. Another notch in the hate-gun of iRobot? Nevermind.

Back to software krapp.

Although initial setup of the Neato’s room mapping was a bit cumbersome, requiring two hard resets, where the ground floor of our house had to be mapped twice, I eventually reached the point of… fcuk-it. If all else fails, I’ll forget the room mapping and just let it clean without it. That’s what the iRobot did. The biggest difference to the iRobot was that the Neato works as though it can see where it’s going. And that’s a big deal. Considering iRobot’s latest product that can also see costs triple that of the Neato…? I can live with krappy software as long as it cleans and doesn’t just bang into stuff.

And clean it does, baby.

After a few weeks of use, just letting it do it’s thing, I’m not convinced that Neato’s mapping algorithm is fool proof. But I did get it working. Things like “no-go-lines” are a good idear, don’t you know. “No-go lines”, btw, you can set in the app, which has a virtual map of your house, and they’re supposed to prevent the device from slamming into, say, the dog’s water and food bowls or any other complicated floor areas, e.g. cables, floor lamp bases, etc. The only problem with “no-go-lines” is that you have to make sure that what’s ever in the lines is always in the same and/or original place. A bit of a cumbersome thing considering a real world floor doesn’t contain “no-go-lines”. Even though our older iRobot could see walls but couldn’t see furniture, the Neato seems to be able to see everything–with or without mapping. Which brings me to…

I was very disappointed when our iRobot stopped working. After searching and researching, I found out that the iRobot didn’t wear as well as I thought it would. That is, the build of the iRobot is better, more solid than the Neato, that’s for sure. On the other hand, the iRobot seems to be more complex. For example, before its demise, the iRobot kept indicating “Error 11”. I since learned that depending on the model, “Error 11” either meant bad battery or bad waste bin. I eventually bought a new (albeit third-party) battery for it. After one cleaning session “Error 11” returned and I was pissed that I might have just wasted my time replacing the battery. Turns out that the waste bin was also faulty. That’s when I found out (realised) that iRobot builds the suction fan into the waste bin. IMHO, after a few weeks with a new robot vacuum, iRobot might be stuck in that industrial mindset of not just over-pricing but also (aghast!) OVER-ENGINEERING.

Anywho. The Neato has a much bigger waste bin, cleans waaaaay more efficiently, is quieter and after (finally) getting the mapping thing going, allows me to clean room by room with a few taps of the app. If/when I want to clean the second floor of our house, though, I do so by just taking it up stairs and hitting the clean button. After that I have to take it back downstairs and manually put it on its home-base. Oh yeah. That damn home-base. Hold a sec. That’s another thing.

If you interrupt the Neato’s cleaning session by picking it up or moving it, it gets confused. That wouldn’t be so bad if I could just tell it to find its base. The problem is, removing it from its mapping seems to make it forget where the base is. The only way to get it back to the base is to manually put it there. Again: krappy software! I hope Neato will improve it with future updates. If not, compared to the 2015 iRobot, I’d still buy Neato. Reason? The most significant difference between these two robots is I no longer have to deal with one of them just banging into stuff.

As far as cleaning goes. The Neato wins hands down. Our hard wood floors are much freer of dirt and tiny particles now. For the price and compared to equivalent smart devices from iRobot, I’m throwing the Neato in with any great deal I’ve made lately. Even though the software kinda sucks, it does a good job of cleaning. Add to that it doesn’t get stuck…

Three years of krapp like this, baby. Replace it.

Get your shit together iRobot!

Consume and rant on, baby.


Planet Of The Free To Be Stupid

planet of the humans pic

Pseudo-Review: The Planet Of The Humans

  • Pros: this is a somewhat informative–if you’re uninformed–documentary with a well branded name connected to it.
  • Cons: #OKBoomer white men1 who are so bored with life that they somehow find a way to make half-decent documentary movies but what they really need to do is step aside and help young people (make those movies) instead.

I’ve never seen Roger & Me in its entirety. I’ve seen a few of Michael Moore’s other films, though. Roger & Me came out the year I was expatriating–you know, running away from the greed $hitshow of my beloved & missed #Americant. The thing about Moore and his movies is that he has most certainly raised the bar when it comes to 1) explaining or 2) complaining. And trust me, dear worst-reader, I know a lot about complaining (ranting).

Here’s the problem with Moore’s movies (complaining)–and probably the thing #Americants will never be able to comprehend after watching them. In all of the troubles of the world–especially the #Americant world–there is nothing, not one single thing, that binds, that ties, that unites the whole shitshow, except, of course, complaining, which is all #Americants know. Well, that and money (of course). But. Hold a sec. Let me worst-elaborate.

Whether Moore is ranting & raving about corporation A or B (Roger & Me), guns here or there (Bowling For Columbine) or the ills of for-profit health care (Sicko), like so many other so-called rational thinking peoples, he ALWAYS fails to mention what makes the entire $hitshow possible. And get this, dear worst-reader. If pressed to provide a worst-example of a peoples (a country) that can actually collectively do something about the ills of the world (or at least the ills of a country), then you’ll have to use a language other than #Americant accented English.

Par-lay vu Fran-say, motherfcuker.

The details are vague in my worst-memory, dear worst-reader. But I remember hearing lots of protesting voices as the 1980s came to an end. Sure. The Berlin Wall was falling. The Soviet Union was dying. And there was a lot going on with all that. But you know what impressed me the most? French farmers dumping whatever they farmed en masse in the middle of Paris. I think, at the time, apple farmers were dumping apples all over the Arch de Triomph. And they were doing so in protest. I had taken my second or third train ride to Paris that year–just for shits & giggles, don’t you know–on account it was so close via a quick train ride from Köln–and once I got a taste of Paris there was no tasting anything else. How fun is that, eh, for a redneck tobacco chewer walking and dreaming on cobblestone streets? #Nomatter.

The thing I quickly realised back then was how the French, if they wanted to, could actually have a voice and thereby use that voice for political and social gain (or demise). And when I say peoples and voice, I mean regular people with big stick voices. Indeed. Real people. Saying real things. It was all quite the opposite of what would eventually lead to the #MAGA hat wearing morons of my beloved & missed united mistakes of #Americant? Or the singularity and repetitiveness of Michael Moore movies–and whatever it is #Americants call the political left. And get this, dear worst-reader. The voices and the peoples outside the world of documentary movie making, outside #Americant, had some (not all) real political power. Now that’s truly different than what I grew up with. You know, money or no-money. Eat or starve. Indeed. Submit yourself to the God of money, minion. And then self-medicate, bitches.

It was an astonishing thing to witness back then, dear worst-reader. #Eurowasteland, especially France and Germany, but sometimes Spain and Italy, were awash in protests. Even though the protestors didn’t get their way in exactly the way they wanted, they most certainly made inroads toward that way. That is, politics listened. Also. They literally chipped away at capitalist greed, the cult of old-money, that hoped it could rule–like its cousins in #Americant and Britain were ruling–and are still ruling. But let me not get on about the ills & uglies of the Anglo-driven (mindset) world compared to that of other worlds.

The thing to keep in mind, dear worst-reader, when it comes to protests, (protest) voices, fighting the good-fight, is that there are peoples out there (in the world) that refuse to have their voices dumbed-down. And so. Unlike #Americants, there are voices in the world that aren’t guided by money alone. Hence, Michael Moore’s movies complain in a big way about the ills of #Americant but nothing in any of his movies will make #Americant apple farmers dump all their apples on the steps of the US Capital. #Americants will never protest how government bails out banks and hedge funds and old-money corporations that should have died ages ago. Could #Americants don yellow-vests in earnest? What happened to the occupy movement? Indeed. #Americant perverted John Wayne individualism will always #Trump (yes, pun intended) #Americant collectivism. Hence #Americant can have no voice, no say, no-nothing in the fight between right and wrong, between greed and starvation, between moneyed-fairness and judicial greed-mongering. Thanks a lot Michael Moore.

And so.

Michael Moore is the executive producer of The Planet Of The Humans, which you can watch for free via the ultimate dumb-down device, the #interwebnets. It’s a pretty hardcore movie, dear worst-reader. The end of the movie is especially hardcore because it shows the brutal demise of an Orangutan after its forrest is burnt down–as though animal cruelty is any different than human abuse–which is nothing more than humans not only doing what they are told (compulsion) but also doing it all without question (behaviourism). Either that or it’s as brutal as a video showing white policemen gunning down African Americans day-in, day-out. The thing about this movie, though, is that it’s voice is a bit different compared to other Moore documentaries, and perhaps that’s due to Moore ONLY being its executive producer. And so. The Planet Of The Humans complains about the complainers. It literally tries to bore advocates of the Green New Deal a new arsehole by complaining about how solar panels are made or how alternatives to fossil fuel require too much fossil fuel. And so.

Has you been woken you up yet, dear worst-reader?

Unlike Roger & Me, I watched this movie to the end. Reason? It’s free. Does that mean I won’t buy another Michael Moore movie? Probably. You’ve seen one, you’ve seen them all. Heck, I’m even listening to Moore’s podcast here and there. And I’ll always love him for those words spoken at his Oscar win–oh so long ago! But his movie making… This movie…? The Michael Moore voice would be better served if spewed from the mouth or movie making prowess of something more youthful. Indeed. Enough #OKBoomer complaining already.

Good luck suckers.

Rant on.


  1. The scariest part of this movie is the obvious and perhaps subconscious reveal that privileged white men, #nomatter their class, are still stuck on/in late nineteenth and early twentieth century Malthusian doctrine and/or social darwinism less the mass grave killing via Black Sabbath’s War Pigs. Or something like that. ↩︎

Summary Demise

hiding in plain sight cover

Pseudo-Review: Hiding In Plain Sight by Sarah Kendzior.

Cliffsnotes, dear worst-reader. Maybe that’s the ticket to understanding what happened to my beloved & missed #Americant since the advent of political stupidity and the election of a two-bit actor for president–oh so many years ago. But enough re-hashing of the good’ole days, eh. Haven’t we all had enough of The Ronald? As in, Ronald Reagan (and not Ronald McDonald)? But before you bite into the delicious pseudo-burger I’m preparing for ya… Let’s get on with The Donald aka President Pee-Pee-Hair–the friendly antithesis of The Ronald in this #Americant $hitshow of greed-galore.

Or maybe not.

The original thought for this worst-post was to make an analogy to Cliffsnotes and there being a pretty good summary out there for those who want to understand things. You know. Something like… Everyone needs a good summary of what it is that’s bothering him/her in order to figure out what the heck is going on–in #Americant politics–so the whole $hitshow can be fixed. I mean, ain’t that what Cliffsnotes are for? Cheating. As in. Cheating–for the greater good? Or? Then again. Figuring things out without actually learning anything–in a life of multiple-choice testing? Ain’t that how so many #Americants got their so-called edumacations and careers, especially college edumacations, and have subsequently guided the $hitshow down the road it’s on as though it and everything within it was nothing but a bad wizard of oz musical?

We’re off to see the…

Let me start again, dear worst-reader.

Sarah Kendzior’s book Hiding In Plain Sight is like a summary (CliffsNotes) of President Stupid and how he came to be–wihtout having to read any history. Except. Of course. In her summary she’s missing one big thing. That is, one big thing is missing in her book and it’s not unlike what everyone else misses in their attempt to figure out (CliffsNotes) what the hell is going on. Of course, I don’t blame Sarah for missing the biggest part of what made #Americant elect such a buffoon. Then again, the same #Americants did elect that other buffoon, Dubya, don’t you know. And just so we’re clear here. Barry-O and Bill Blowjob Clinton were not buffoons. And that’s the ticket, ain’t it, dear worst-reader? A good summary of buffoon-hood might be just enough to send whoever over the edge of knowing a bit more than he or she knew before thanks to faux newz, Rush Limbaugh, and the love of being really, really, really STUPID. Indeed. When it comes to knowing something… about politics… Don’t ask an #Americant.

But let us digress.

Hiding In Plain Sight is nothing less than brilliant–if you’re interested in understanding some of the stupidity behind not just #Trump but also what he stands for, how he actually raped his first wife Invana, and, where necessary, as little as possible about his ugly, disgusting and perfectly distracting clown hair. With that in worst-mind, Sarah Kendzior codifies from begin to end the political life and times of President Stupid–and what he really is. And she does it in about four hundred or so pages. From my POV that means #Trump is a thin book with an ugly hair-do-cover but Sarah is smarter than most to be able to make it all palatable. If I could afford it I’d buy hundreds of copies of this book and hand them out to everyone I see–while wearing gloves, a face mask, and after spraying each book with a bit of #Trump disinfectant.

So what’s missing in this book–and what’s missing in most summary’s (CliffsNotes) of what gave the world The Donald aka #Americant? As I’ve said through out this worst-blog, the thing that must not be forgotten or overlooked is the class system that voted for this guy, especially the ignorant and greedy middle-class that thinks/believes it is the chosen people. Too few actually call this class out, of course. I mean. Obviously. To call out this class of greed mongering gluttons… is nothing short of blasphemy. Hence, welcome to my expatriate world of worst-writing. And so. Faux-Newz does have an audience, or? Limbaugh & Co. has been talking to someone all these years. Am I wrong? #MAGA hats sell well, don’t you know.

The #okboomer generation is filled with closeted haters and bigots and spite-rearing automatons all of whom are reflected in the #Trump mirror. Add to that the fact that these people feel as though the world owes them… Indeed. What a mirror $hitshow. But how many actually look at the/their mirror? The last number I heard was sixty-two million. Sixty-two million greed mongers, who, like #Trump, have never been able to grow-up and out of the shadow of their parentage, voted for this guy because, well, they hate women, they don’t understand the difference between newz and propaganda like Joseph Goebbels does, and they never read It Can’t Happen Here, or anything else intellectual. Indeed. Of course. The other number is sixty-five million. That’s the number that voted for Hillary. But get this, dear worst-reader. Sixty-two million haters, bigots, greed-mongers combined with faux newz is obviously a lot more powerful than sixty-five million (plus the eight to ten million smart-asses that voted “independent”) who are obviously trapped in the rainbow of a unicorns arse. In fact, sixty-two million is enough to overlook, as Sarah & Co. do, because there are so many fascinating details about one man, his hair, and that mouth that looks just like an anus puckering atop a golden toilet jut before it expels a huge…

As good as this book is, it fails to call-out the real problem–just like everything/everyone else out there that think they have answers about my beloved & missed #Americant. So take a seat, dear worst-reader, and give my answers a go.

Or maybe not.

There is at least two generations of #Americants that have lived an unearned life of luxury and status unseen in all of human history. Hence the Disney/McDonalds/CocaCola/War nationalistic vernacular of exceptional, #MAGA, that hair, etc. And when I worst-say unearned, I mean: considering the state of debt-economics1 in #Americant today, it’s no wonder that all these people can do is either vote for more greed or more war or just hate women–as the likes of faux newz spews the only truth they know. Indeed. And so. These generations of #Americants have hell-to-pay, which is reason enough to have a mindless moron with yellow cotton-candy pee-pee-hair as… their a new & improved #MAGA-hat dear leader. What else are these millions of greed mongers to do?

Seriously. Someone. Please. Get rid of faux newz. Otherwise. All those who/that come after, will just learn to disguise their… pee-pee hair.

But before I get too far off on worst-writer’s ranting and raving about who and what worst-moi is, what I believe, and what I ran away from, let me get back to this great summary (CliffsNotes) of what/who #Trump is. Sarah Kendzior has put together a must-read for anyone that is willing and able to give President Pee-Pee-Hair a second look. For those who already hate the guy, there’s not much here. And even though I grew up with #Trump and already know what kind of idiot he and his NYC ilk really are, I’m glad that Sarah Kendzior wrote this book. It relieves me of some of the pain of being an expatriate #Americant on the verge of relinquishing my citizenship due to the ugliness and disgust I ran away from.

The only question that remains with me, and, of course Sarah Kendzior can’t answer, is what’s next for the sixty-two plus sixty-five million that are capable of this much blatant and outright gun-toting, nuclear warhead, stupidity?

Good luck suckers.

Rant and read on.


  1. Economic debt being synonymous with riding on the backs of others because, well, you can’t do anything for yourself, etc. ↩︎

Zombie Virus Or Just A Bad Flu

world war z cover

Pseudo-review: World War Z by Max Brooks

Note: To skip all the/my worst-writing, the actual pseudo-review of this book is just a scroll or two or thrice downwards.

And now…

Not sure if this makes since, dear worst-reader. So I appreciate you indulging me. Here’s a worst-writer fact for ya: I was never, ever afraid of horror movies as a kid. In fact, although the movie rating-system in my beloved & missed united mistakes of #Americant was not so heavily enforced at the time, I pretty much watched/saw any and every film I ever wanted to see–even before I was a teen. But my youthful rowdy behaviour is neither here nor there. For I am born and reared: #Americant, baby.

Horror films were everywhere by the late 1970s. In fact, in the whole Hollywood horror genre of my beloved & missed #Americant youth, there was nothing on the big screen–at least in the shape of monsters, goblins or ghosts, etc.–that scared me. I attribute this super-power to having faced the worst kind of childhood: loneliness and fatherlessness. Oh wait. Before I get-off on making this worst-post about my #Americant bastardisation…

By the time I could go to movies on my own, during my mid to late teens, albeit being dropped off by a parent here or there, I used to have a ball in the cinema teasing who ever I was with–especially a sister, a neighbour friend, or Chad–that older false cousin who even got me a fake ID that turned my fifteen years into eighteen. Anywho. The fun of horror movies was observing others either tremble or try not to tremble while watching The Omen, Dawn of the Dead, Halloween, etc. Of course. Later. Things got really fun for me when I started going to the movies on “dates”–as opposed to going with friendly neighbours. Scaring the “date” with a poke here or a poke there during whatever gore scene was a blast as she screamed and yelped and whined. Eventually, though. All that fun had to succumbed to cop a feel where, if timed correctly, lead to some serious second-base action–no matter what was on the big screen. But. Again. Nuff about me.

A girl went to a horror flick with me once and stayed the whole time on her knees in the row directly between my knees, mostly because she was terrified by whatever gore-fest I took her to watch. Did I trick her by saying I didn’t know it was a horror movie and thereby just happened to get the best BJ of my youthful life? Who knows. My worst-point is this: I never fell for the illusion-of-truth (verisimilitude) that was supposed to be “horror” in the realm of celluloid story telling, which wasn’t the case with other movie genres. And here’s the reason why.

I was never afeared of horror movies because fear of another kind beat it to the punch. Indeed. Blood and guts meant nothing compared to a good ol’fashion suspense-thriller. Hold a sec. Let me worst-splain. By my late teens I was an experienced hunter and fisherman. I also killed bats while cleaning tobacco barns. If you’ve never done such a thing, dear worst-reader, trust me when I say that not only killing bats is gross but hanging around where they hang around–and shit–is worst. I even put down old horses with a ten gauge shotgun once and then chainsawed off their legs in order to fit them in the back of a pick-up truck that would hall them off for glue production. With that in worst-mind, horror movies were just silly to me. Suspense movies, on the other hand, scared the living bee-gee-zees out of me. In fact, they scared me so much my mind would be boggled for days after watching one. They gave me nightmares, too. I experienced excessive sleep loss. I had #Americant anti-disney PTSD, don’t you know. And all that long before PTSD was a thing. Oh wait. Scratch that. I came of age during the end of Vietnam war. PTSD was alive and well then. It just had a different brand(ing), don’t you know. Anywho.

Fear of suspense movies, by-the-buy, made horror flicks a fun-fest for me. But put me in a huge claustrophobic movie house with a thriller with shit that could actually be real–as in real-life… Holy krapp, dear worst-reader. Yeah, I almost wet myself when a chick tricked me into going to a dollar showing of Rear Window. And so. Hence. Ever since I became a young intellectual, a pseudo-know-it-all, a wannabe well-read anti-automaton, I’ve always claimed to hate Alfred Hitchcock–even though the opposite is true. Seriously. Rear Window and Vertigo usually sent me to that place between my dates knees, low in the row of her cinema seat–to her satisfaction, of course, don’t you know.

By-the-buy. The movie that scared me the most and set the stage for preferring the horror-genre was The Poseidon Adventure. I saw it when I was, like, nine. Here a bit more on that. Indeed. To this day. I can’t help but think of (fat but luscious) Shelly Winters whenever I go swimming. I also will never board a cruise ship. In short, I’m a real chicken-$hit when it comes to suspense.

But here’s the thing, dear worst-reader. For most of my adult life, I kinda dug the movies. I mean. I preferred live theatre when available—especially since moving to #Eurowasteland. But a good movie here or there? That’s the ticket. Yet. Things changed in the last ten to fifteen years. I’ve kinda quit going to the movies. I’ve even already sickened of streaming services. Reason? Movie making has gone to $hit. I just can’t find a connection to any of it. It’s as though Hollywood, over the years, has over done it. Actually, that’s kind of a nice way to put it. What I really mean to say about Hollywood is this. As I’ve gotten older, seen too many movies, I think they’ve simply run out of creativity.

Still. Some stuff intrigued me. Like the whole horror sub-genre known as Zombies. WTF is up with Zombies? I mean. Come on. Even though I’ve long since grown out of my horror movie fascination, and certainly don’t need to cop-a-feel anymore, I can’t help but be curious. Thank goodness for the various clips and shorts available by the Interwebnets, eh. So I couldn’t help but notice, over the years, how people are eating up the Zombie genre. I mean. There are Zombie movies, Zombie comedies, Zombie walks (yes, as in, go for a walk dressed as a Zombie), and various Zombie TV shows.


Thanks for asking, dear worst-reader. Here’s worst-writer’s theory about the Zombie craze.

First. The zombie genre is the first purely American aka Hollywood horror creation. I mean. Get this. Ghost stories, the undead, monsters, etc., have a long history in the mind-catacombs of #Eurowasteland and corresponding literature. But until the Zombie thing came along, America had nothing. Luckily the Zombie thing fits a particular mentality, which means Hollywood has probably found the money-recipe that appeals to so many and they’ve been running (away) with it ever since. Good for them, eh.

Second(1). How has the horror genre lasted so long? Horror movies of my youth were an answer to the suspense movies that would eventually scare the bee-gee-zees out of me. Yet. For the last fifty or so years, it doesn’t feel like suspense movies have, for lack of better cinematic vocabulary, moved on (like the diversification of the horror genre). I suppose I could say the same thing about other genres, aka Dramas, Sci-fi, Comic (movies based on comics–aghast!) But horror? These things have gone full evolution (or is it devolution?) I mean. The first horror movie to ever tickle my bee-gee-zees button (as in scare me) was Saw. Of course, the blood and guts didn’t scare me from that film. For, don’t you know, dear worst-reader, no horror movie director has ever had to rid a local barn of bats. And so. Suspense scared me. Under other economic and social circumstances, a movie like Saw might have even driven me mad. Btw. I should also note that I tried to watch other Saw movies. Since they are all just redundant, pseudo-repeats of the first, those initial bee-gee-zee scares were quickly wiped away. Again. IMHO Hollywood has a serious creativity problem. Oh. Wait.

But I’m off worst-subject again. Stop the presses. Rewind. Start again.

Second(2). To worst-writer, the success of the Zombie genre over the years is what I like to call a two way mirror. A two way mirror is where/when people look at the mirror, they know it’s a mirror, they know that someone on the other side is looking back at them, but they don’t care because, well, it’s still just a mirror image and we all know that a mirror image isn’t necessarily real. And so. The Zombie genre seems to be an ever flowing revenue stream for Hollywood because it doesn’t really need much creativity to keep turning out more and more product–it just needs to point that mirror. It needs to make sure that the zombies never really, actually, literally, show #Americants the other side of their two-way.

But I die-gress.

The first zombie movie I saw was 1978’s Dawn of the Dead. It has remained in my mind as the quintessential #Americant horror movie. Reason? It was set in a shopping mall. It is about shoppers in that shopping mall–all of whom are afraid for their lives. What better imagery is there than to show reality in a mirror, fill it with gore, add a bunch of weaponry and racism, and don’t forget sexual tension but no nudity, and there you have it. George Romero is a fcuking genius. Of course. Dawn of the Dead was Romero’s second Zombie movie. The first having been shot ten years prior to Dawn. I think it took me twenty years before seeing his first one–but it wasn’t as good as Dawn. Anywho.

To worst-writer, the Zombie genre is perfect for current #Americant misconstrued political and social ideals, especially for those who cling to such ideals. The essence of the #Americant fail-upward-ness that is the greed $hitshow cannot function unless misconstrued individualism reeks of spite, bigotry, hate–and the desire/need to see the death of what is in the mirror. It is a very binary thing, don’t you know. Not unlike the so-called bipartisan pseudo-governance, aka politics, that is red and blue states. It’s also the perfect mismatch for #Americant never facing its demons, especially the demon of slavery, rich v. poor, winner-take-all and all the losers left behind, or who and whatever else is in that mirror. And so. To bring things back around… The Zombie genre is perfect for audiences to avoid the mirror that is #Americant life–i.e. avoid reality. Hence, consumerism does have a price when mixed with too much Mikey Mouse. Eh?

Which brings me to the only Zombie movie that ever, kinda, moved me–above and beyond the thrills of horror. It happened on a flight across the Atlantic to visit Mom a few years back. Although I had planned to read and do some worst-writing on the flight, I scanned through the movie offering and there was Brad Pitt’s Zombie film. Sure, I thought. I can kill two hours out of the eight to watch this film. Besides. I had heard about the film. I had read about its production problems. There was also something out there in the ether about the book it was based on. And so. A few years later. Last week to be exact. I caught World War Z on Amazon Prime–again. I thought: yeah, I should re-watch this on account I missed a few things here and there while watching it on a plane with that horrific little backseat screen and awful audio. Also. I’ve since heard a few more things about the book–on account of all this/that about viruses. So I watched the movie again. I let it percolate through my mind that night. The next morning, last Thursday, I discovered that Amazon was offering the e-book of World War Z by Max Brooks for something like three fcuking Euros. I finished the book Easter Sunday morning, 2020.

Pseudo-review of World War Z by Max Brooks.

Let me begin with the negative.

It makes no sense to me why such a great writer/thinker would subject himself to writing this book. Did Max Brooks get up one day and think to himself: how the heck can I sell my compulsion? Oh. Hey. I’ll write about Americans–as Zombies. I’ll show them the mirror they refuse to look at–but instead dance around with guns and violence and war and false-happy. But then some publishing big shot called him up–surely a friend or foe of his father (the grand Mel Brooks) and said: just do it, dude. Just write about the brainlessness of Americans and… with that name of yours… we’ll sell it.

Let me end with the positive.

Max Brooks nails it. This has to be one of the best reinterpretations (or is it regurgitation) of #Americant story telling–ever. Wait. Is this a first? Not sure. From the get-go, the first third of the book kept me very interested. The second third of the book trailed along the first. The last third of the book is a bit winded (i.e. weak) but I was so glad that the whole thing didn’t degrade into anything like the Hollywood mess that was the movie, I was happy to read every word to the end. And on that note… The thing from the mediocre Brad Pitt movie that interested me was how the fight against Zombies was not unlike the fight against an enemy within. It was, eventually, my hope that the book would double down on the enemy-within–and it did–whereas the movie screwed the pooch. But let’s move on.

A chronicle of a world war against Zombies based on interviews with participants? Again. Brilliant. And how Brooks holds it all together with some seriously good writing. He even threads here or there a few snipes of social and political reality, i.e. addressing man’s non-sensical, if not whimsical, allowance/enabling of so much gluttonous behaviour–that can only result in Zombies. I mean. What a silly genre, really, for so much social commentary–hidden or not (in the back of that two-way mirror). Zombies. Yet the author maintains a level of literary bent that can even interest the best of the best of us pseudo-intellectual wannabes, making the undead not only entertaining but important. Good for you, Max! Us failed/worst writers salute you.

Rant on.


Helmet, Helmut And Yo-Yo

Secondary title: Pseudo-Review of the Abus Hyban bike helmet with visor.

Perhaps some of you are too young to know. So allow worst-writer to explain yet another worst-title. In the movie Night On Earth by Jim Jarmusch a really bad taxi driver from the (then) recent former East Germany picks up a New Yorker in New York City and his name is Yo-Yo. While these two drive around NYC and have what Jarmusch portrays as the time of their lives, they also try to figure out their names. That is, Yo-Yo can’t understand the difference between the name Helmut and a helmet, i.e. protective gear one may or may not wear on ones head. Helmut thinks Yo-yo was named after a child’s toy. #Nomatter. The audience is given one of the best comic duos in cinematic history that is only comparable to Abbot and Costello. If you haven’t seen it (the whole movie), give it a look, dear worst-reader. Boy do I miss the days when movies were made like that. You know, creative movies. Works of art. Etc. That worst-said…

Late last summer during what I consider to be the worst bike riding year of my worst-life, I decided I needed to do something about being a bespectacled bike rider. Or have you never been there, dear worst-reader? You know. You’re cruising along and you know it’s eventually coming, and then it does, and suddenly you’re riding through nature as it unleashes rain rain rain rain. #Nomatter what you do, your standard and/or traditional bike helmet (or even hat) won’t/can’t protect your eyewear from being covered in rain drops. And so, when you arrive at your destination, which in my case is usually an out-door market where I gather fresh veggies and sometimes fresh hunted pheasant (from Guido the French/German pheasant hunter), everyone (including Guido) would stare at me with sympathy as they could see the misery in my blurred, foggy, soaked glasses face.

“It’s a bitch riding in the rain, eh.” Indeed.

And so. I decided then and there it was time to take action (which usually means spend money) on one of them new fancy bike helmets that includes a visor. Being the cheap-skate that I am, though, I searched for days both online and in a bike store here or there for a consume-to-survive product that fit my budget. Since this was my first helmet with a visor for bike riding, I wasn’t really sure what I was looking for. Hence, this is the moment where corporate branding comes into play and a bit of online research can help–or not. As you can see (pics above), I decided for the another Abus branded helmet1.

Here’s my visor helmet buying advice short and sweet: steer clear from this one.

Don’t get me wrong. It’s obviously a good helmet. It’s well made, it’s very sturdy and exudes safety, and, I guess, it’s practical. With that in mind, here’s why I wouldn’t buy it again and only recommend it with the following thoughts:

  • Feels heavy, huge and bulky and kinda looks funny (on worst-rider’s head)
  • On an e-bike constantly traveling the gut wrenching speed of 25kmh, it’s freaking obnoxiously loud due to airflow
  • Directs air/wind into your ears and as you can see in the pics, I’m jimmying2 it to see if I can better control the airflow (I don’t think it’s working, though)
  • The chin strap sucks and is uncomfortable with or without included chin strap protector, which I’ve ripped off and thrown away while singing good riddance motherfcuker
  • Mechanism to adjust chin-strap length detaches but luckily, since it’s magnetic, when it detaches I don’t lose the connector but I have retraced my riding path after I thought I lost half of the strap connector only to realise the strap had come lose but the connector was attached to the other connector, blah, blah, blah (see pic with red pointer)

The good news is, even though I wouldn’t buy it again and all of my complaints have not motivated me to send it back, the adjustable visor perfectly protects my glasses from not only rain but also cold wind. And that’s a big deal, don’t you know. It’s a big deal on account, at my age (pushing sixty, bitch!), cold air constantly blowing in my eyes can be quite irritating. Oh. And. I bought the friggin’ thing discounted, about 80-,€. It’s retail price was well over 100,-€ (at the time). What a bargain, eh. (Sarcasm off.)

The main problem with this helmet is the airflow along with its weight and size. When riding it feels as though cold air is being directed to my inner ear. Also, because of airflow, it’s friggin’ loud. This winter I’ve been riding with ear plugs plus a heavy skull cap that covers both my ears. Since I ordered the largest (size) helmet, I can fit quite a bit underneath it. But. Again. That makes it large and bulky. It does have an easy adjuster for fitting and/or tightening it to fit your head. The visor is easily adjustable too but airflow is influenced whether it’s up or down–again, making it either loud or louder when riding. Luckily adjusting the visor is no problem, even when using only one hand, i.e while riding. In warm weather the helmet is hot, and when it’s cold, well, you get the picture.

Is it well made? Yes. Does the safety light on the back work? Yes. Is it safe? I guess it is–if not for the weird, cumbersome chin strap. But at this point, the only reason I wear it, needed it, is because it’s been raining for months and months and months. Not a day goes by that I have to ride and it’s not raining–since friggin October of last year. And so. The only thing good about this helmet is that it’s great for protecting my glasses/eyes from the weather.

Rant on.


PS. Yes. According to the pics above, I voted in the Democratic primary via Democrats Abroad of my beloved & missed united mistakes of #Americant. As a former Democrat, and considering the direction THE LAND OF FREE TO BE STUPID has done since, gee, I don’t know, the end of the cold war, Bush and his wars of choice and, now, of course, President Stupid with the pee-pee hair, I thought it appropriate if I voted for a democratic socialist that might turn #Americant socialism for the rich into a bit of socialism for the down-trodden. Since it’s becoming more and more obvious that Bernie ain’t gonna get the nomination, I’m still glad I participated. Or maybe not. Oh well. Rant on, baby.

  1. We only have Abus bike helmets. For motorcycles, though, I prefer Shoei or Arai. ↩︎
  2. Fiddling, rigging, changing it, etc. ↩︎

“Dantons Tod” And No Gilets Jaunes?

dhaus_dantons_tod2_8719m (c) Thomas Aurin.jpg
Pic: Thomas Aurin, Source: see link at end of post

Get this, dear worst-reader. While I was walking through its front doors, which seem to be in a perpetual state of renovation, discard and renewal for the last couple of years, my better half asked me when was the last time I saw a play at the Düsseldorfer Schauspielhaus. Wow, I thought. It has to be at least a decade. Or what about fifteen years? But then I tried to think of the last play I saw there. As I write this, dear worst-reader, I can’t remember the most recent play I saw there. Shame on me, eh. I can remember vividly one of the first plays I saw there. It was Waiting For Godot. That must have been, if my worst-memory serves me correctly, ca. 1991. And it was outside of the iconic building, in the now under construction courtyard. It was a magnificent production. But I digress.

Yeah, it’s been a while. With that in worst-mind, my better half bought us two 2nd row, right in the middle tickets, for Danton’s Death by George Büchner. And while I couldn’t remember the last time I had seen a play at this particular venue, I do remember the fact that this viewing of Dantons Tod would place it at the top of my most viewed plays list. Indeed. This would be my third viewing of Dantons Tod. The only other plays that come close are Hamlet, Waiting For Godot, Endgame, Street Car Named Desire, all of which I’ve seen staged at least twice. Which begs the worst-question. Will I see Danton a fourth time? Or. Oh how I’m due to see Godot again.

Critics weren’t fond of this staging of Dantons Tod, a few of which I read after seeing it. And although I try not to play worst-critic, I thought it was a perfectly acceptable staging including all the text manipulations (re-write), character and gender role changes (re-write) and a bit of flamboyant ensemble pseudo-dancing that included the excessive dispersion of fake blood and other gore, which made it, at times, to the 2nd row. Then again, this is a play not only about the main characters of the French Revolution but also about collective terror and self-inflicted madness. With that in worst-mind, there is one small thing I cannot accept about the staging of this brilliant piece of art.

While mentally preparing myself to enjoy such a viewing in a pretty cool theatrical venue, I couldn’t stop knowing/thinking/hoping that this staging would include something as relevant as yellow vests. Half way to the intermission of a three hour production, there was not one yellow vest to be seen. Once we returned to our seat after the intermission (bier for worst-moi and a glass of white wine for my better-half), there was still no yellow vest. WTF!

As I may or may not have worst-said in this worst-blog, I am a Francophile. Not only that, but I am also a Neo-Jacobin1. How the hell can anyone stage such a play at such a time and not include, in one form/style/way or another, a fcuking yellow vest? It’s bad enough that most of the world’s press doesn’t cover what’s going on in France but is it also necessary for a theatre director who is making/re-writing what is probably the most profound theatrical analysis of the world’s greatest social and political revolution–that even tops the revolution of my beloved & missed united mistakes of #Americant–and not include at least some minor reference to what is obviously connected to that revolution to this day? One of the most profound things about the French, about being French, is how they are able to connect to their history not only through nationality, borders and language but also through a culture of unyielding distrust of government, authority and power. France today, IMHO, is the only remaining beacon of hope against the likes of #Trump, #Brexit, hate and collective fear-mongering. And that’s coming from an expat #Americant that’s been living amongst fcuking automaton Germans (The Borg) for the past thirty gottdamn years. Come on Armin Petras!

Indeed. This is a very acceptable production and a grand effort on the part of the director (re-writer) Armin Petras, including the guillotine-like stage-build by Olaf Altmann. Not only that but Danton (Wolfgang Michalek) made me cry (tears of joy), Robespierre (Lieke Hoppe) and her mane made me wish for more of a female Robespierre, and I really enjoyed the brief but utterly self-indulgent integration of Toussaint Louverture (Ron Iyamu)–who is not even in the original play, hence re-write by the director. Also, at the link below Toussaint Louverture is accredited with being “a former slave” when in fact he is the black Jacobin of history’s only black rebellion against slavery which took place in Haiti, 1791. You can read about Toussaint Louverture, by-the-buy, in The Black Jacobins by CLR James. Yeah, I’ve been meaning to worst-write something about that one. In the mean time, here and here is a bit more about my love/admiration for all things French and/or French Revolution. And so. Enough of worst-writer as worst-theatre-critic.

Go see a play, dear worst-reader. I’m so glad I did.

Rant on.



  1. Neo Jacobin, according to worst-writer, is a Jacobin who has learned from the mistakes of the reign of terror but adheres whole heartily to the annihilation of monarchs, ridding the world of unearned wealth, i.e. aristocracy and pseudo-aristrocacy and, where applicable, eating the fcuking useless rich. ↩︎

Pods, Ears, Tech Mediocre Galore

Pseudo-review of Soundcore earbuds, baby.

Consuming to survive, dear worst-reader. How’s it going for you? Otherwise, I bought these earbuds a few months back while you-know-who/what online store had a sale. Got them for half-price, too, don’t you know. But I suppose I should also give credit where it’s due regarding how I bought something that I thought I wouldn’t buy–at least until I upgrade my iPhone 6s and thereby get a phone jack out of my life. For that’s the ticket, ain’t it dear worst-reader? For most of my dog-walking and podcast listening pleasure over the past few years, I’ve been using the original earbuds that Apple provides with their phones–phone-jack n’all. I’m actually a fan of the Apple design earbuds, too. If they weren’t so expensive I’d be using Apple wireless earbuds, too. Instead, I got these earbuds after my son bought them and I was able to try them. He actually ended up sending his back and buying another set from another brand because he said these don’t have enough bass. Goodness knows there’s plenty to choose from in this arena–and I’m not a bass fan anywho. I was so impressed with these that when I saw them marked down to 55,-€… I was all over them. Which brings me to the main issue, eh. Do they actually work?


In short, they work great if you don’t…

  • make a phone call while walking
  • use them when it’s windy
  • walk in the city where there’s lots of traffic (noise)
  • try to make a call using only the right earbud, etc.

As a headset for telephony, they only work if you’re using them where there’s absolutely no ambient noise and you’re not moving around.


For music listening they work much better than the wired earbuds from Apple. In fact, I’ve been so impressed with music play that I’ve actually found myself listening to music again via my iPhone. For don’t you know, dear worst-reader, I stopped listening to music via my iPhone because 1) I hate iTunes and 2) I hate listening to music through headsets, whether in-ear or over-ear. Not sure if these are gonna turn me into a regular earbud music listener, though. Indeed. I doubt it.

In summary.

These are my first true wireless bluetooth earbuds. I had wired bluetooth earbuds but I misplaced them and they never turned up again. The only reason I bought these is because they were half price and my Apple wired earbuds were literally worn-out. Once I found out how bad they are with telephony, I was on the verge of sending them back. I changed my mind on account I like the design and the way they fit in my ear. Since I don’t telephone much, that ain’t that important. Battery life is also pretty good. I use them twice a day during dog walks which means they last for a whole week. The other odd them about them is that I have to plug them in, unplug them and then plug them back in (in that oder) to get them to charge via USB. Obviously these earbuds are a bit of a hassle. I certainly won’t buy them again. But they do serve their purpose.

Oh well.

Rant (and consume) on, baby.