Kiril Džajkovski

 We went out on Friday. A couple of friends, my GF and me. We were meeting with a couple of friends of a friend who I know from passing. It shouldn't have been anything grand. But it was awesome. I guess, in part, it's due to the liters and liters of beer and schnapps - but also due to great company. And great music.

We first spent a couple of hours at a pub downtown, where there's cheap beer and tasty schnapps. Then we made our way for Purgeraj, a nightclub-like place with a very leisure atmosphere. On our way there, we met Martin (who was asking for directions). He's a German, living in Valencia and studying French and Italian. Talk about bizarre?

In Purgeraj, the music was just the type of music I needed that night. When I started dancing, I just couldn't stop. I know I'm not the world greatest dancer and I make some funny moves, but when I'm in the zone I feel like I'm at the top of the world. And that's all that matters. So, to explain the title of the post. They played a song by Kiril Džajkovski, a Macedonian musician mixing downtempo, drum and base and Macedonian ethno. Now, for people from these here parts, when you hear it, it really sounds like turbo-folk. Well, not turbo-folk, but any music mixing in eastern Balkans ethnic music tends to sound like turbo-folk. And turbo-folk really raped and maimed the local nightclub and music scene, turning most places where you could go out into places playing trash music (from the perspective of people like me). But, what I can't deny is - people who can enjoy turbo-folk have a blast at the places where they play it. It's fast, catchy and makes you move your body, even if you feel vomit coming up your throat from the sound of it (well, you at least have to move to vomit).

But Džajkovski...he made that magical combination for all the young Croatians who feel like me toward turbo-folk. He's using the 'ethnic rhythms' which are typical for turbo-folk - but uses it to make drum and base. Which. Is. Awesome. He gives us all the excuses we need to feel like it's not turbo-folk, but it sounds like it. And you just have to dance when you hear it. Give it a try!


Išli smo van u petak. Par prijatelja, moja cura i ja. Našli smo se sa par prijatelja od prijateljica koje znam tek iz viđenja. Nije trebalo biti ništa posebno. Ali je bilo predobro. Pretpostavljam, dijelom, i zbog litara i litara pive i rakije - ali isto zbog super društva. U super muzike.

Prvo smo proveli par sati u bircu u gradu, gdje ima jeftinog piva i fine rakije. Onda smo otišli do Purgeraja, nešto kao noćni klub sa jako opuštenom atmosferom. Na putu do tamo smo upoznali Martina (koji se raspitivao za upute po gradu). On je Nijemac, koji živi u Valenciji i studira francuski i talijanski. Malo bizarno, a?

U Purgeraju, muzike je bila baš onog tipa koji mi je trebao tu večer. Kad sam počeo plesati, jednostavno nisam mogao stati. Znam da nisam najbolji plesač na svijetu i da radim neke smiješne pokrete, ali kada sam u zoni osjećam se kao da sam na vrhu svijeta. I to je jedino što je važno. Pa, da objasnim ime ovog posta. Svirala je pjesma Kirila Džajkovskog, makedonskog glazbenika koji miješa downtempo, drum and base i makedonski etno. Sad, u ovim krajevima, kada čujete tako nešto, zvuči kao turbo-folk. Pa, ne baš turbo-folk, ali bilo koja muzika koja miješa etno sa istočnog Balkana zvuči kao turbo-folk. A turbo-folk je stvarno izsilovao i izmučio lokalnu glazbenu i klupsku scenu, pretvarajući većinu mjesta za izlaske u mjesta gdje se pušta treš (iz perspektive ljudi kao ja). Ali ono što ne mogu poreći jest - ljudi koji mogu uživati u turbo-folku se stvarno zabavljaju u tim rupama kad idu van. Brzo je, lako se pamti i tjera te da se zibaš, čak i kada osjećaš bljuvotinu koja se penje uz grlo od samog zvuka (pa, bar se krećeš ako te sili na povraćanje).

Ali Džajkovski...on je napravio tu magičnu kombinaciju za sve mlade Hrvate koji imaju iste osjećaje prema turbo-folku kao i ja. On koristi 'etno ritmove' tipične za turbo-folk - ali koristi ih da stvori drum and base. Što. Je. Predobro. Daje nam svima izgovore koje trebamo tako da se osjećamo kao da to nije turbo-folk, ali još uvijek zvuči kao on. I samo moraš plesati kad ga čuješ. Probajte!

Quote of the Day: Narcissus and Goldmund - Citat dana: Narcis i Zlatousti

Hesse, iskren jednoj od jako čestih tema u pozadini njegovih romana, govori o umjetnosti na način na koji bi o njoj govorio jedan psihoanalitičar - kao sublimaciji straha od smrti. Thanatos, instinkt smrti, stvara strah od smrti koji se sublimira i pretvara u najveći doseg čovjeka - umjetnost. Riječima samog Hessea:

Možda je, mislio je, izvor svake umjetnosti, a možda i svakog duha, strah od smrti. Mi je se bojimo, užasavamo se prolaznosti, žalosno gledamo neprestano cvijeće kako vene i lišće kako pada te u vlastitu srcu osjećamo izvjesnost da smo i mi prolazni i da ćemo uskoro svenuti. Ako mi kao umjetnici stvaramo slike ili kao mislioci tražimo zakone i oblikujemo misli, onda mi to činimo kako bismo ipak spasili nešto iz velikog mrtvačkog plesa, nešto ostavili što će trajati duže od nas samih.

Usudio bi se čak dodati da Hesse u svom visokom intelektualiziranju zaboravlja na onaj način na koji mi ostali, koji nismo Hermann Hesse ili Michelangelo Buonarroti, bježimo od zaborava - a to su djeca. Ljudi u djeci, da se izrazim frojdovskom terminologijom, sublimiraju svoj strah od nestajanja. Najsmješnije u ovom svemu je da ja kritiziram Hessea za pretjerano intelektualiziranje...sama definicija autoironije.
 
***

Hesse, true to one of the reoccurring themes in the background of his novels, speaks of art in a way a psychoanalyst would - describing it as a sublimation of the fear of death. Thanatos, the instinct of death, creates fear of death which in turn is sublimated into the greatest thing a man has made - art. In the words of Hesse himself:

He thought that fear of death was perhaps the root of all art, perhaps also of all things of the mind. We fear death, we shudder at life's instability, we grieve to see the flowers wilt again and again, and the leaves fall, and in our hearts we know that we, too, are transitory and will soon disappear. When artists create pictures and thinkers search for laws and formulate thoughts, it is in order to salvage something from the great dance of death, to make something that lasts longer than we do.

I'd dare to add that Hesse in the height of his intellectualization forgets the way us other people, who aren't Herman Hesse or Michelangelo Buonarroti, run from oblivion - and that's children. People through their children, to use Freudian terminology, sublimate their fear of disappearance. The funniest thing about this is that I'm criticizing Hesse for too much intellectualizing...talk about auto-irony.

Quote of the Day: Feyerabend - Citat dana: Feyerabend

Paul K. Feyerabend is a philosopher of science I'm a great fan of. His perspectives on objectivity of science, on scientific methodology and epistemology are a never-ending source of thought-food for me. To start a series of post about Feyerabend, here's one of his more provocative quotations (found in the book Against Method):

'The separation of state and church must be complemented by the separation of state and science, that most recent, most aggressive, and most dogmatic religious institution.' Paul K. Feyerabend
 
 

***

Paul K. Feyerabend je filozof znanosti čiji sam ja veliki fan. Njegovo viđenje objektivnosti znanosti, znanstvene metodologije i epistemologije su vječan izvor hrane za um za mene. Da započnem seriju postova o Feyerabendu, evo jedan od njegovih provokativnijih citata (koji se može pronaći u knjizi Protiv metode):
 

'Razdvajanje države i crkve se mora upotpuniti razdvajanjem države i znanosti, najnovije, najagresivnije i najdogmatskije religijske institucije.' Paul K. Feyerabend.
 

Arghhhh

Can't find a fucking book in this fucking mess. And I need it for a report tomorrow. Aronson, where are you? WHERE ARE YOU?

***

Ne mogu naći jebenu knjigu u ovom jebenom neredu. A trebam ju za izvještaj sutra. Aronsone, gdje si? GDJE? 

Jablan - Poplar

 Azra usred noći. Jablane kreni!
 
 





Da li lažem kada kažem
Da je sreća u tri stvari
U dobroj ženi, gitari i bogatom tati
Koji uvijek nešto radi
Pa ako sanjaš takvu sreću
Igraj rulet, kocku, karte
Ili prodaj sve osim blanje

I kreni
Drugom stranom
Jablane kreni
Drugom stranom
Jablane kreni

Tvoji su dani proćerdani
Na vinjak, TV i porno slike
Ženu nemaš i teško da ćeš je i steći
Pored takve stare majke
Ljubav je to za čime gineš
Do ljubavi se teško stiže
I zato prodaj sve osim blanje

I kreni
Drugom stranom
Jablane kreni
Drugom stranom
Jablane kreni

Volio bi da si nalik na one
Bradate i silne momke
Da ćumez dižeš na noge
I da te nude cigaretom i alkoholom
Da nosiš šljivu ispod lijevog oka
I vičeš parole što strašno zvuče
I da si bitnik i pravi anarhist

I zato kreni
Drugom stranom
Jablane kreni
Drugom stranom
Jablane kreni
Drugom stranom
Jablane kreni!



Azra in the middle of the night! Poplar set out!


Do I lie when I say
That happiness lies in three things
In a good woman, the guitar and a rich dad
Who's always working
If you dream of this happiness
Play roulette, cards or gamble
Or sell everything but the lathe*

And go
On the other side
Go poplar
On the other side
Go poplar

Your days are squandered
On cheap brandy, TV and porn
A woman you don't have and won't have
Considering your old mother
Love is the thing you're dying for
Love is hard to find
So sell everything but the lathe

And go
On the other side
Go poplar
On the other side
Go poplar

You'd like to be like those
Bearded and intense lads
To make the rabble jump to their feet
To offer you smokes or drinks
To have a black eye
And shout out fearsome paroles
So you'd be a beatnik and a true anarchist

So go
On the other side
Go poplar
On the other side
Go poplar
On the other side
Go poplar!
 
 
 
 
 
 


The translation, of course, does not do the song justice. So....jablane kreni! :D

*lathe - not the woodcarver's lathe, but a slang term meaning guitar


 

Rants on the Picture

Wilde's flowery style, and flowery is precisely the word I'd use for his writing, was quite a shock after the austere words loaded with meaning in Hesse's books I've read lately. Wilde's a British dandy, a flamboyant gentleman cultivated in controversy and classical education; valued much more in those times than nowadays. Dorian's, and through Dorian Wilde's, search for Beauty or Truth or beauty in truth or truth in beauty shows the frail sensibilities of a man before, or if not before most definitely outside, his age. He reminds of Baudelaire, as if Dorian's character is outlined by Baudelaire himself:
 

It will take more than those picture-paper beauties,
Spoiled products, born of a worthless century,
Those feet in tight boots, those fingers made for castanets,
To satisfy a heart like mine.
 

His philosophy of hedonism, of the everlasting search for the Ideal in apparently superficial debauchery, in the enjoyment of the senses; is an unresolved paradox. Like two forces in his being, they drag him in opposite directions and yet he always claims they are the same thing. Seeing true Beauty as a matter of superficial sensory phenomena, the truth (or the upper case Truth, as both Wilde and Baudelaire like to accentuate their ideals - pardon, Ideals) as living every moment to the fullest and taking what joy life can offer. The dichotomy of Dorian's physical beauty that is seemingly everlasting and the slow rot eating at his soul and finally devouring him entirely; it immediately reminded me of a borderline personality. A person having the borderline personality disorder can't integrate what she perceives as 'black' and 'white' parts of her being - and constantly shifts between those two extremes. This ineptness of integration of their own self image is symbolically represented by Dorian Gray and his picture - the beautiful, perfect Adonis that Dorian Gray is and the urges of his vile soul, his wickedness and literally - evil which are shown in the picture as the real, visible manifestation of his soul.

Interestingly, at the beginning of the novel, Dorian is shown as a simple, humble young man who is greatly unawares of his enchanting, otherworldly beauty. And despite it might strike the reader as if Wilde wanted to show Dorian's beauty as a purely physical, superficial thing; it seems that his beauty, that enchanting visage all the people around him couldn't get enough of did not come from the mathematical perfection of the lines of his face, his full lips or blond curls. It came from his innocence.

That's why the moment Basil (the painter) and Lord Henry, Basil's debauched noble friend, start corrupting the youth his beauty comes under risk of disappearing. Wilde, again, forced it upon us with a strong symbol of 'wrinkles of spite or thinking', of real, physical deterioration of Dorian's beauty in the picture- but in fact, his beauty would diminish the moment he lost his innocence and became aware of his influence on people. In the world of Wilde's symbols, were physical beauty could really be the Ultimate Truth, the ultimate evilness could make a man ugly. And only in this world of symbols could Wilde's philosophy of hedonism give what it was supposed to give - the Holy Grail, the Beauty, the Truth, the Ideal.

This might explain much more than a character in a novel - it might explain why Wilde, despite his life-long search for the Ideal in the bodily pleasures, converted to Christianity before he died.

As a conclusion, another verse by Baudelaire:

Viens-tu du ciel profond ou sors-tu de l'abîme, o Beauté?
(Do you come from the depths of heaven or up from the pit, o Beauty?)

Quote of the Day: Picture of Dorian Gray - Citat dana: Slika Doriana Graya

Pišem izvještaj za faks rukom (ne pitaj), pa da odmorim ruke i um sam odlučio nešto na brzaka natipkati. Čitam Wildeovu Sliku Doriana Graya pa sam našao jedan citat koji bi podijelio s vama. Jedan mladi, dekadentni engleski lord razgovara sa slikarom o ljepoti i na jedan zanimljiv način opisuje predrasudu o praznoglavim lijepim ljudima čak stoljeće prije pojavljivanja Paris Hilton ili manekenki visoke mode:

Ali ljepota - istinska ljepota - prestaje gdje produhovljeni izraz počinje. Duh je sam po sebi neka vrst prekomjernosti te uništava sklad svačijeg lica. U času kad čovjek sjedne i počne razmišljati, on vam se sav preobrazi u nos ili čelo ili u kakvu drugu grdobu. Ta pogledajte samo intelektualce koji su imali uspjeha u svojoj profesiji. Oni su izrazito ružni! Dakako, izuzevši one u crkvi. No u crkvi, dabome, ne misle. Biskup s osamdeset godina i dalje govori ono isto što mu rekoše neka govori dok je bio osmanaestogodišnji mladić, i razumije se, uslijed toga uvijek izgleda upravo dražesno. Vaš tajnoviti mladi prijatelj, čije ime niste odali, ali me njegova slika ipak očarala, nikad ne razmišlja. U to sam uvjeren. On vam je nekakvo tupoumno biće koje bi moralo biti uvijek u blizini, zimi, kad nema cvijeća, da u nj gledamo; a ljeti, kad želimo nečim osvježiti duh.
 

***

I'm writing a report by hand for uni (don't ask), so I decided to type something to rest the hand. I'm reading Wilde's Picture of Dorian Gray so I found one paragraph that amuses me and I'd like to share it with you. A young, decadent English lord is talking to a painter about beauty and describes in an interesting way the prejudice about empty-headed beautiful people a whole century before Paris Hilton or the models of high fashion appeared (I found the paragraph in English here):

But beauty, real beauty, ends where an intellectual expression begins. Intellect is in itself a mode of exaggeration, and destroys the harmony of any face. The moment one sits down to think, one becomes all nose, or all forehead, or something horrid. Look at the successful men in any of the learned professions. How perfectly hideous they are! Except, of course, in the Church. But then in the Church they don't think. A bishop keeps on saying at the age of eighty what he was told to say when he was a boy of eighteen, and as a natural consequence he always looks absolutely delightful. Your mysterious young friend, whose name you have never told me, but whose picture really fascinates me, never thinks. I feel quite sure of that. He is some brainless beautiful creature who should be always here in winter when we have no flowers to look at, and always here in the summer when we want something to chill our intelligence.

Konrad Paul Liessmann

Today I've attended a lecture held by Konrad Paul Liessmann. He is a philosophy professor from the University of Vienna, and some might say a philosopher, but more importantly (for this post) he's the author of a book called Theorie der Unbildung or roughly translated to English - The Theory of Uneducation. The Theory of Uneducation is a quaint and direct criticism of the European institutions of higher education - or more precisely, the contemporary forced unification of the said institutions by the Bologna Process. The Bologna Process is an initiative to form a sort of 'eurozone' of higher education, standardizing and unifying the various education programs at various universities under the same umbrella program. This, as the European bureaucrats like to point out, has a varied goal - creating a network of universities with comparable undergrad, grad  and postgard programs, grades and expectations which would, among everything else, improve student and lecturer mobility. It creates a framework for program evaluation and comparison.

This all sounds well and good when written on a freshly printed out form in some office in Brussels - but on the other side, you can imagine the resistance and bewilderment arising and growing in the intellectual circles who are really affected by the Bologna Process. Many, I'd even venture to say most, were shocked and appalled by the bureaucratic wish to quantify the unquantifiable - to regulate and prescribe that what the intellectuals (this in large being the members of the universities in the humanities departments) considered sacred and off limits to the 'politicking' and 'economizing' of the bureaucrats.

Liessmann is the definition of this resistance, this complete disgust shown in meticulously developed and polite put wording of a philosophical criticism of the Bologna Process.

Americans reading this might be confused by what I've said by now, or by Liessmann's standpoint - but bear with me that the perception and tradition of universities in Europe is quite different than that in the States. In Europe, the universities are traditionally seen as bastions of revolutionary, dissident thought and more than everything - freedom. I see it like this - the Americans take pride in their right of 'free speech'; Europeans have the right of free speech too, but our pride is defined and incorporated in the 'ivory tower' of the university - it's not only important to have the freedom to speak, it's important to know how to speak and what to say. This, of course, might be seen as a completely misguided generalization; but that is how I see it in my experience with American universities and talking to Americans about universities. The American culture has (or at least has had) strong anti-intellectualism currents; to an average European, intellectualism is something to strive to; or at least, to like from afar.

This also ties to another thing - in the US (more than most of Europe), higher education is irrevocably tied to money. As a future student, you have to carefully plan out your education regarding money - and even more importantly, you get educated to later earn money; what's more, the highest and most acclaimed centers of learning in the US are completely off limits to those not able to come up with the money. Europe isn't that different from the US nowadays, but the difference is more seen in the outlook than in the current situation (though, by far, studying in Europe is from what I've seen much more accessible to the poor than in the US; correct me if I'm wrong, of course). From a standpoint of an European humanities-bred intellectual, the American equation between money and education is at the very least irrelevant; at most - insulting.

Why?

From the perspective of a humanities centered university of the 'European style' as I propose and see it, one has to differentiate education from training. Training has a specific goal - you have to learn how to do something practical, which can in turn be converted into paid work. Training has a cost, and has a definite use. Education, on the other hand, is not and cannot be training. Education does not have a practical goal or use, per se. To an 'American mind' (more precisely, an utilitarian mind bred from a culture of protestant work ethics) this is unto itself unfathomable. Why would one get educated if he cannot use it i. e. earn from it?

Liessmann sums it up in a simple etymological answer. School, scuola, ecole, škola has its root in a Greek word meaning leisure. The whole concept of a school, of education, revolves around the concept of leisure, not goal directed behavior. Education, seen through the lens of an intellectual like Liessman, is not a way to increase 'human capital', but an art of the mind. This does not mean that universities should stop teaching people practical skills; on the contrary. But we should reinstate in our minds the difference between education and training, the learning of the art of thought and the learning of skills; the difference between true education and training for specific work-tasks. To those not seeing the cultural/societal worth of this centers of intellectual leisure, seeing them as decadent and unnecessary; I don't have a way to convince you otherwise. If you cannot see the brainchild of such leisure in every text message you send, every book you read, every ride you take in your car - that's your shortsightedness.

Or one might say, your stupidity.

A char I made for VtM

As an avid roleplayer, I every now and then make characters for a number of games (be them NPCs or PCs). This is a char I made for a Vampire the Masquerade game (the story was originally written in English, so I don't feel like translating it):


It was a cold night in Brussels. Martijin stood by the window, his breath foaming the glass as his eyes followed the car lights speeding down Rue du Canal. He was still fascinated by cars, even after all those years of sharing his nights with those machines. For him, they were the ever present statement of Kine zest - that which was lost to him more than a century ago. His chalk white face was an emotionless mask, as it often was in these nights, when he did not have to act for the sake of the grand Masquerade; in those rare moments of his privacy. Even then, when his body resembled a well preserved corpse; he liked the feeling of his lungs filling with air. The stone mask of his face was enriched only by the movement of his eyes - left and right, left and right - as he followed the constant stream of cars below.

The knock on the door came sooner than he had expected it. Manon was growing more anxious by the night, Martijin thought. He strolled from the window, unlocking the apartment door and letting his childe in. His face remained white, his lips lacking the red vividness of life and his cheeks not flustered despite the hot dry air in the apartment. He knew this would surprise his week-old childe, for she had never seen the deathly visage of her sire - what she saw was only the human-friendly facade which mimicked life so perfectly even many of their kind couldn't tell for sure if Martijin was Kine or Kindred.

Her nostrils flared for a short moment of surprise as she bowed her head in a salute, but she composed herself in a matter of seconds. Martijin enjoyed that minuscule flare of her still present humanity; for he knew she wasn't even aware of its preciousness.

He let her in, and they exchanged the usual pleasantries. Soon, they were sitting in Martijin's living room, on the cushioned divans by the dead fireplace. Martijin could feel her nervousness, as she played with the tablet on the table in front of her; her fingers picking on the cloth like those of an overactive child. As the nights before, her questions wanted to uncontrollably burst out of her - and Martijin was ready to indulge her curiosity with another night of stories.

Her first question came without the usual polite introduction, which made it obvious that she thought about it for quite some time now. "Sire, you never told me of your Embrace?"

Martijin knew this question would be asked, sooner or later. For he too asked it so many years ago.

"Ahh. Much hides in the answer to that question, but I am sure that's why you asked it, dear Manon."

He hadn't told the story of his Embrace to any other soul in the long years - if his sire never recounted it to someone, it could be that Manon was the first person to hear it in the centuries from his Embrace.

"It started, as all interesting things at that time did, at the opera. La muette de Portici, the piece was called as I am sure you're aware of, as all those calling themselves 'Belgian' know nowadays. Those were the times, dear Manon! Those were the times! When an opera could be so strong it riled the hot blood of the young and old alike. Rile them to rebel, to shout for freedom, to go out to the streets and be what every Kine or Kindred should strive to be - free. Those were simpler times, true; but with much more color than these nights we share today."

Manon leaned forward, sitting on the edge of the divan; her eyes being two wide pools of adoration. For indeed every Belgian in the 21st century knew their national history, of how their country was founded. And Martijin, this mystic creature that turned her into what she was now; claimed he lived in those days! How utterly fantastic!

"I felt like most of the young men at La Monnaie that night - I was the Masaniello who would lead us to freedom; free us from the yoke of the northerners! In our eyes, the glorious future awaited just around the corner; a corner of an impending revolution we could feel beginning to form right there, in the theater as the actors played their parts!"

"This, I learned many nights afterwards, was nothing but hot blooded and propaganda infused idealism. Our revolution did not bring Liberté, égalité, fraternité the damned fork-tongued French promised us, or the fall of the ruling oligarchies. No, no, dear Manon. It was nothing but a careful manipulation of the powers behind the scenes; of the Catholic bishops and the Frenchmen and the nobles like my father and uncles. But, still, even while knowing I and all of us were used as mere tools (that live and breath but do not really think!) that night as we left La Monnaie to spill our revolt to the streets of Brussels - I would not change it for the world."

"This, as you might imagine, was a backdrop which prepared me well for the politicking our kind does from night to night. That feeling of betrayal was the same thing most Camarilla and Sabbat neonates feel as their sires and elders manipulate them to the greater goal of the Jyhad." In the previous nights he had told her the stories of the Jyhad; of the schemes centuries or even millennia old vampires plotted in the many saloons, bars, night clubs and ancient havens throughout Europe and the New World.

Despite this being the first time he told the story of his Embrace, Martijin often played with it in the confines of his mind - and thus his retelling lacked the emotion one might expect from such a personal recount of a lifetime's worth of ideals and world-views; his voice was only left with a tone of bitter sarcasm.

"He came to me in that night, 25th August 1830 as you know, just hours before dawn. We were at our favorite watering hole, a couple of friends and me, pretty hammered and jolly because the revolution we awaited for so long finally started. The commoners howled still throughout the streets of Brussels, but the gentry sat over a mug of wine; as was polite to do when debating politics. We made plans for the future of our newly born country, dreamed of the bright years to come when people of intelligence and competence would rule."

"None of us knew Coen, or noticed when exactly did he join our debates. He was well spoken, with a distinct Parisian accent. Even after the long centuries, I can still remember the moment when he jumped to his feet shouting 'FREEDOM' and cheering the others to join him. All of us would die for him at that moment; for the young Parisian who spoke about everything we had on our minds with such energy and wisdom. He was everything we strove to be: independent, full of ideals and the knowledge to present them with fiery passion. We were drunk with Coen's words - and soon afterwards, he was drunk with my blood."

"He Embraced me in a filthy alley, not far from here where we sit tonight - and told me I'd share a world with him."

"How wrong he was...oh how wrong..."

Manon managed the next question even before Martijin finished his last sentence, blinking in almost childish anticipation:

"Did you kill him? That's what they're saying, at the Elysium..."

The Beast didn't make its usual slow approach, but gripped Martijin's mind without a moment's notice. He was lost to its rage even before he was aware he jumped to his feet, slamming Manon's frail body into the coffee table. He gripped her with both hands, his screams of anger mixing into a cacophony with her screams of bewildered fear and pain. He smashed her like a child would smash a doll, over and over again, shattering the small table into wooden splinters and million glass pieces.

Covered in Manon's blood, he felt the Beast receding from his mind as her destroyed body turned to ashes in his shocked embrace; the ash falling through his fingers and soiling his clothes. Martijin cried like he hadn't cried ever since Coen left him, century and a half ago.
 

A short history lesson for those unfamiliar with Belgian history - the Belgian Revolution started on the 25th of August in 1830 - the opera mentioned in the story really did mark the start of the revolution, which separated Belgium (in those times, the Souther Provinces) from the Dutch dominated United Kingdom of the Netherlands.  La Monnaie is the name of the opera house in Brussels where the said opera was performed, and Masaniello is the character from the play who embodied the rebelliousness which sparked the revolution.

A little quiz for all those familiar with VtM: guess which clan is Martijin (it should be fairly obvious)! :D

Free your mind - Oslobodi svoj um

 Weeeeee! I'm going to an EFPSA Congress in Netherlands!

Not only is it the the annual congress of the European Federation of Psychology Students' Associations, but it's held in Castle Berckt in the Netherlands (which looks positively awesome, check out the link). Now, usually I don't have 300+ Euro lying around to pay for a trip and a week long stay in a castle in the Netherlands, but we managed to procure the money for the participation fee (which includes not only the participation fee but the stay there and meals...IN A CASTLE!) from our college administration. So yea.

Going to the Netherlands, going to the Netherlands, going to the Netherlands... *whistles away*


Jeeeeee! Idem na EFPSA kongres u Nizozemsku!

Ne samo da je to godišnji kongres Europske federacije udruga studenata psihologije, nego se održava u dvorcu Berckt u Nizozemskoj (koji izgleda predobro, bacite pogled na link). Sad, inače nemam 300+ Eura koji negdje sjede u banci da bi platio put jednotjedan ostanak u dvorcu u Nizozemskoj, ali smo uspijeli dobiti novce od faksa za kotizaciju (kotizaciju uključuje ne samo kotizaciju već hranu i krevet...U DVORCU!). 

Idem u Nizozemsku, idem u Nizozemsku, idem u Nizozemsku... *odlazi fućkajući*