Of Patriotism, Nationalism and Families


Taking part in the Walk Along the Wire (photo: dr. fil)

I saw a quote today that struck home. It was simply too long to twit, so I decided to share it here. It’s nothing new, really, just well put. Slovenia turned 19 years young a few days ago, but – not for the first time – its birthday party was tarnished by purportedly patriotic groups expressing their disapproval of the ‘gay element’ in the Slovene society by vandalizing a gay café.

“Patriotism is proud of a country’s virtues and eager to correct its deficiencies; it also acknowledges the legitimate patriotism of other countries, with their own specific virtues. The pride of nationalism, however, trumpets its country’s virtues and denies its deficiencies, while it is contemptuous toward the virtues of other countries. It wants to be, and proclaims itself to be, “the greatest”, but greatness is not required of a country; only goodness is.”

Sydney J. Harris, journalist and author (1917-1986)

Now while there may not be any obvious links between nationalism and the attacks, it is more than bothersome that these groups are using the Slovene Statehood Day as if to award their criminal activities some higher purpose. It is, however, even more bothersome that some people/political parties seem convinced that too much attention is paid to such transgressions. Once you’ve seen a person with a degree in Philosophy argue on National Television that an unprovoked dog attack on a human being calls for an equal attention of the public and the authorities as a violent attack of Neo-nazis on the gay community, you may not have seen it all, but have come close.

It is more than obvious that 1/ the municipal elections are nearing by the day and that 2/ the proposed new Family Code (more in Everyone Needs a Family by Mr. P) will be one of the hot topics. Those who oppose what I consider progressive solutions in the Code are quick to claim that they do so in the name of protecting the Nation and securing its future. A twitch in my left toe tells me that this coming autumn may be hotter than the summer.

Happy Birthday, Slovenia!


As Slovenia celebrates its 19th birthday today, I decided to bake a cake for the occasion. The last time I baked a real cake was probably just about 19 years ago, so this seemed even more appropriate.  After, err, a bit of work, it’s ready to be taken out and shared with my colleagues here in Luxembourg. Many thanks to Huferka for the inspiration and tips. You are my role model when it comes to cakes!

Here goes nothing:

This is a double chocolate cake filled with whipped cream and sour cherries, topped with chocolate and then coloured whipped cream.



Update: The cake didn’t just well, draw attention, but was actually delicious as well. Huferka’s recipe warmly recommended. It was dubbed “Črni Kal” (via Schwarzwald).

Moja sočna španka


Oh, kako sem si te zaželela. Kazalo je, da mi bo zmanjkalo časa. Saj veš, kako je. Spet sem pozno odšla iz službe. Mislila sem nate, ko sem se usedla v mikrico in z upanjem v prsih oddrvela iz garaže. Vse se je zarotilo proti nama. Ulil se je dež, na Charlottinem mostu sem se stežka prebila mimo avtomobilov, ki se nista mogla izogniti prebližnjemu srečanju. Pri Cactusu je mikrica utripajočega srca in smernih kazalcev čakala na sumljivo počrtkanem mestu, gologlava sem se pognala skozi naliv, težkega srca a ne da bi trenila planila mimo iztegnjenih rok beračice in vstopila. Ko sem te prijela v roke, se mi je topilo srce. Odnesla sem te domov in občudovala barve, ki jih je nate narisalo sonce, tvoj sladkobni vonj me je očaral. Skupaj sva bili le kratek čas in kmalu te bom pozabila, ampak bilo je lepo, dokler je trajalo. Hvala za vse.

Zadnji hip


Še malo

K pisanju tega posta se spravljam že nekaj tednov. Arbitražni sporazum je kompleksna tema, o kateri so svoje mnenje prek kamerami, mikrofoni, na papirju ali na internetu izrekli že malodane vsi Slovenci. Nekateri bolj argumentirano kot drugi. Nekateri popolnoma brez argumentov in samo na podlagi svojih čustev ali političnih ambicij. Prav neverjetno je, kako lahko isto, ne predolgo besedilo, ljudje berejo na tako različne načine. Še težje razumljivo se zdi, da nekaterim utemeljenim argumentom ne uspe prodreti do zavesti sicer razumnih, bistrih in razgledanih ljudi nasprotnega mnenja. Blokada v glavi?

Nekaj je gotovo. Nihče ne ve natančno, kakšna bo rešitev, ki jo bo ponudilo arbitražno razsodišče. Vsi, ki smo prebrali arbitražni sporazum, pa vemo, v kakšnih okvirih jo bo moralo določiti. In menim, da je dani okvir za Slovenijo ugoden. Nihče od nasprotnikov sporazuma mi še ni uspel razložiti, kakšen je po njihovem mnenju neteritorialen stik Slovenije z odprtim morjem. Naj še tako tuhtam, mi ne pride na misel nobena druga možnost, da se Slovenija stika z odprtim morjem, kot da to stori s svojim morjem. Triglav se ne zdi pripravljen prepogniti katerega od svojih vrhov tako daleč proti jugu.

Staroste našega naroda, kot sta Bučar in Pahor, spoštujem. Spoštujem jih zaradi tega, kar so storili v preteklosti in ker so, kakršni so. Ampak to ne pomeni, da slepo sledim njihovim razmišljanjem. Tudi oni niso slepo sledili razmišljanju kogar koli. Prebrala in poslušala sem argumente obeh strani in glasovala po lastni presoji. Za.

Colour Me Happy


There’s no place like home.

Circles Make Dizzy


staircase inside the St Augustine Lighthouse, photo by dr. fil

Even though I never was a great fan of the late Janez Drnovšek, he had my respect and possibly surprisingly so I felt saddened by his passing. As a year went around, so many things changed and so many things stayed the same. And, as years tend to do, another one came, stayed a while and waved goodbye. For me, for some reason, this has become a time for reflection.

What a ride it’s been. Crises springing up left and right. Some more man-made than others, some made up. The constant feeling of urgency, of pressure to “act or else” has been unrelenting. Anyone mention panem et circenses? Show time! And boy, have we had a few some circus acts. Twitter came in handy as a vent, so I have not really blogged about them (but Mr. P has).

What I find deeply disturbing is the level of debate that has become acceptable if not the norm. It would seem that the most fundamental (n)etiquette rules are being blatantly ignored. Reality show type of reporting in the media where attractiveness of a news – if we dare call it that – piece takes precedence over its credibility seems to have taken over and changed the tone of public discourse. If a long time ago one wished for more relaxed public speakers, one now finds herself dangerously close to supporting the use of gag orders. Heck, the use of gags in general.

Conspiracy theories have been around since the forbidden fruit was consumed. And networks have existed ever since. For cover-up purposes, naturally. Now seriously – alone, a single human is a rather weak animal. Together with others, he or she can achieve so much. Learn from one another, help each other, build together, make music. (And destroy ever so effectively). Continuously, we yearn for human contact, for a feeling of connectedness. Face it. Tweet it, even.

The concepts of human rights, of human dignity, of letting the law rather than lynch mobs remedy transgressions in a society, the presumption of innocence, all of these came much later than the need to build networks of people. And, it seems, what comes last is the first to go down the drain when Maslow’s pyramid is chipped off. The steadiest of men will struggle to keep to the principle of treating others the way he would wish to be treated when emotions run high. The feeling of belonging to a group of people who appear to share the same belief and ride the same wave of emotions is bound to drive that wave up into the skies. For better or for worse.

But… Who are you, when you are alone and all by yourself with nothing to keep you company but your thoughts? Are you at peace with what you see inside?

Največja afera vseh časov v Sloveniji!



May the Force Be With You


Return of the Jedi
(Photo by dr. fil: Dragon at the Ljubljana Castle)

Will 2010 mark the Return of the Jedi?

Tli. Vzplamti. Zažari.


(foto: dr. fil)

Herman Haiku


cherry blossoms on šmarna gora
photo by dr. fil

peace is important
compromise brings cohesion
cherries will blossom


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