Punda Malidadi

Wednesday, December 29, 2004


100,000 lives.
100,000 people.
Now, 100,000 bodies.

Mothers, fathers, children, girlfriends, boyfriends, uncles, best friends.

Whole families wiped out, except for the odd and unlucky survivor.

The sheer amount of misery and heartbreak that has swept over this world in the last few days is mindboggling.

An earthquake. A wave. And more than 100,000 people lose their lives.

Well, as a very wise person once said:

Even if there is a god, I sure as hell wouldn't like him.

Monday, December 27, 2004


I am full of energy!

I don't know what to do with it!

It's terrible!


Oh, Westernhagen. When I was 10, I had a huge crush on Elvis Presley. Then, my parents told me that he was dead. Well, what else could I do? I moved on. To this guy, Marius Mueller-Westernhagen, or, as he calls himself for his albums, Westernhagen. It was an odd choice for a 12-year old in 1993, the age of Eurotrash and boy groups, but I madly fell in love with the singer-songwriter that had been making music since the late sixties and was born the same year as my father. Naturally, I set myself up for being made fun of for my taste in music all through High School, but my devotion was unquavering.
I still know every single one of his songs by heart- especially the old stuff. He sells out the hugest arenas there are in Germany, and hasn't been on tour since 1999. And there I am, going on his website today, and it turns out he decided to go on tour at the end of 2005. Already he's had to double the number of his concerts.
Now, you have to understand that I can't be in Edmonton for that fall semester. I'm taking it off to swoon at a then 57-year old. For the sake of the good old times, when I would forget to breathe when he came on TV.

Country of the Day: Republic of India (federal republic)

capital: New Delhi

chief of state: President Abdul KALAM

head of government: Prime Minister Manmohan SINGH

GDP(in PPP $US): 2,900

issues: dispute over Kashmir with Pakistan; affected by the Tsunamis

Sunday, December 26, 2004

Comrade Don Camillo

What a great book. Don Camillo has conversations with Jesus throughout. And by conversations I mean direct speech, quotation mark kind of conversations. Dialogues.

Prime Example:

"Lord," said Don Camillo, "he[Peppone]'s gone a bit too far, and I shall destroy him!"
"Don Camillo," said the crucified Christ over the altar, "they went a bit too far when they hung me up on this cross, but I managed to forgive them."
"But they didn't know what they were doing! Peppone had his eyes wide open and deserves no pity."
"Look here, Don Camillo," Christ retorted; "ever since Peppone became a Senator haven't you been particularly hard on him?"
These words hit home, and Don Camillo resented them.
"You wouldn't say that, Lord," he protested, "if you knew me a little better."

The plot revolves around communist mayor Peppone winning 10 Million Liras in the lottery and not willing to share them with the masses, and the resulting need to keep his wealth secret, and Don Camillos very unchristian intrigues to expose Peppone's hypocrisy. Highly recommended, it is the 7th book in the DonCamillo and Peppone series.

Other than that, I am in a frenzy of downloading German music.

Also, in the light of recent, extremely horrible developments, I will make a little detour in the country of the day order, which was supposed to be alphabetical(sorry, Andorra):

Country of the day: Republic of Indonesia

chief of state & head of government: President Susilo Bambang YUDHOYONO

capital: Jakarta

Per Capita GDP(PPP): $3,200

Issues: watch the news, goddamnit.

Also: Indonesia and East Timor contest the sovereignty of the uninhabited coral island of Palau Batek/Fatu Sinai.


...it is still Christmas Day. Although I assume that this post will show up under the 26th of December. Let's just say, this was my weirdest Christmas ever. If this is any indication for how 2005 will be for me, I am a very very happy camper. There are few things in life that I embrace more wholeheartedly than weirdness.

I went tobogganing with Roman. That was weird. And funny. And then I went out to Dinner with someone in exchange for him not to contact me for at least 5 weeks. That also qualifies as weird. Then, Chris Chan came over to my house to borrow a movie from me which he can't even understand since it's dubbed in German(weird), and helped me solve this year's Journal's Holiday Crossword puzzle(geeky, and only slightly weird). He also had plastic wrap around his runners to see if that would keep the wind out(very weird- respect).

We are maybe 20% done. Damn it.

As for the rest of the evening, I am going to take a bath and try to hone my skill in not getting books wet while reading in the bathtub by reading "Comrade Don Camillo", a book which I illegally borrowed from my ex-boyfriend's building's common room's library a while ago, and which reminds me of my childhood- it's Italian and I have grown up watching the movie adaptations of the quarrels between the communist mayor Peppone and the catholic priest Don Camillo.

I feel a bit bad about borrowing it, because I plan to borrow it indefinitely, but to say it economically, the utils it adds to humanity's wellbeing through me are indefinitely more numerous than the utils it adds to humanity's wellbeing by collecting dust surrounded by bound editions of Reader's Digest in the lowest shelf at a highrise full of...well, unappreciative people.

At least that's what I'll keep telling myself.

Saturday, December 25, 2004

Now, I realize it might be pathetic...

...to make two blog posts on Christmas Day, but I can't help it.

My day got a lot better when I found the huge Holiday Crossword Puzzle in yesterday's journal, and I happily sat down for a few hours of bliss.
Turns out, don't do a newsprint crossword puzzle with a ballpoint pen on a white coffee table. Unless you're trying to redesign the table into some kind of pop-art piece with a bunch of trivia on it.




(I'm still working at 'across').

Oh, and anyone have any idea what a native of a North European peninsula with 12 letters could be? A Denmarkanian????

Guess what Santa brought me???

A punch in the face!

I guess he thought he'd put a little variation into that whole coal giving thingy.

Seriously though, I woke up with my right eye almost swollen shut for no discernible reason. This is definitely turning out to be the best Christmas of my life.
Oh, and the webboard is down on top of everything. I'll go feel sorry for myself in a minute, but not before I have introduced the

Country of the day:

People's Democratic Republic of Algeria

chief of state: President Abdelaziz BOUTEFLIKA
head of government: Prime Minister Ahmed OUYAHIA

main city and capital: Algiers

landmarks: Sahara desert

issues: territorial conflict with Libya, refugees from Western Sahara.

(Source: CIA World Factbook)

Friday, December 24, 2004

This post has nothing to do with Christmas.

...but was inspired by Zita's blog. Who must be cool, because she found my post on the webboard about Roman's countersummit funny. And if somebody would tell me how to link from the body of my blog post, I would link to both Zita and the webboard thread now. But I don't know how to, so I can't.

Anyways, here are 22 questions that I answered about myself. Best Christmas Eve ever.

Name three names you go by:

1) Catrin
2) Catrin
3) Catrin

Hey, it didn't say three *different* names.

Name three screen names you've had

1) catrin_berghoff
2) elisa.day(anyone know what song that's from?)
3) beloved_monster(and this one?)

Name three things you like about yourself

What, only three? Alright.

1) My grammar.
2) My spelling.
3) My GPA.

Name three things you don't like about yourself

What, only three? Alright.

1) My inability to do more than 3 things at once.
2) My inability to read books in the bathtub without getting them wet.
3) My complete disinterest in 99.99% of humanity other than as an abstract concept.

Name three parts of your heritage

1) German
2) Polish
3) um...Elitist?

Wait, that sounds awful in connection with the German.

Name three things that scare you

1) disease and death of loved ones
2) conventionality
3) large numbers of people, especially dumb ones

Name three of your everyday essentials

1) the internet
2) humour
3) food

Name three things you are wearing right now

1) A bathrobe.

um. sorry.

Name three of your favorite bands or artists

1) the Eels
2) the weakerthans
3) Charlie Parker

Name three of your favorite songs at this moment:

1) You shook me all night long(AC/DC)
2) Lola (The Kinks)
3) I know what I know (Paul Simon)

Name three new things you want to do in the next 12 months

1) leave this continent for at least a month or two.
2) read the dictionary. Or buy a proper dictionary, for that matter.
3) memorize all countries with their leaders, capitals, main cities, rivers, landmarks, and current issues.

Today: The Republic of Albania.

President: Alfred MOISIU

Main city and capital: Tirana.

Can't find any rivers on that map.

Current issues: treatment of ethnic Albanians in neighbouring countries; major drug transshipment point in Europe; trafficking of people.

(Source: CIA World Factbook)

Name three things you want in a relationship (love is a given)

1) Passion
2) Honesty
3) Spontaneity

Name two truths and one lie

1) I believe in love.
2) I believe in humanity.
3) I believe in principles.

On some days though, these are two lies and one truth.

Name three things about the opposite sex that attract you

1) Intelligence
2) Sense of humour
3) a strong jawline

By the way, what an incredibly politically incorrect phrasing of a question.

Name three things you just can't do

1) Sing
2) Not laugh when something strikes me as funny
3) feign interest

Name three of your hobbies

1) Reading
2) Writing
3) Games(Board-, Card-, Mind-)

Name three things that you want really badly right now

1) Be with my family
2) My mom's food
3) Swim in the ocean. One that's above 15 C, preferably.

Name three careers you're considering

1) University Professor("She's harsh, but fair.")
2) Journalist/Writer( "I never laughed so hard in my life.")
3) Bum on the beach ( "I wish I had the guts to just enjoy life like that.")

In a perfect world, I'd be working as a freelance journalist while on sabbatical from university travelling the world in my houseboat.

Name three places you want to go on vacation to

1) Sub-Saharan Africa
2) Iceland
3) Egypt

Name three potential kids' names

1) Victoria
2) Paul
3) I only plan to have one. So I'm covered.

Name three things you want to do before you die

1) Get arrested without a proper reason for something political( Look, I *know* that that's childish. No need to point it out.)
2) visit all continents on a year long backpacking trip around the world(Is anyone interested? I plan to do this 2006/07).
3) Write a book.

Name three people who have to take this quiz now or die painfully

1) Sam.
2) Andros.
3) Any one else who reads it and ever wants me to speak to them again( i.e., a very select and elite group of people, but you know who you are).

Monday, December 20, 2004

Are you a loser too?

Then you might not have any plans for New Year's Eve either. If there are enough people interested, we can do something at my place. Like Poker. Or that Seinfeld/M*A*S*H session. Or both.






Sunday, December 19, 2004

I can't believe that...

...I have this apartment to myself for

three full weeks.

It's like I'm eighteen again, living on my own, not a care in the world...

Saturday, December 18, 2004

What the...?

So, I got my Women's studies paper back. It says:

"Catrin, I have stopped correcting your grammar at this point, but I hope you realize that you need to do something about your writing."


Granted, I didn't proofread it, but she knows I wrote this in a rush.

Fact is, I *solely* rely on my grammar and style when it comes to papers. I have handed in papers without a thesis statement that I've gotten an A- on(Pol S 200: "A great paper with intelligent writing. If only you'd have had a thesis.")
My writing teacher asked me to tutor people in writing. I am willing to bet that I know more about grammar than 95% of all native English speakers.

I write a content-free paper, without a cover page or even my name on it(she scribbled it on with a ballpoint pen when I handed it in), and what does she criticize?

My grammar. MY Grammar. My grammar. My GRAMMAR!

My pride is in shreds.

too much drinking.

No more alcohol until new year's eve. I need to take a look at my life soberly and then figure out if I still like it. If I still like it sober, then I can go back to drinking. If not, then I will resort to drinking as a coping mechanism.

Somebody know what to do on new year's eve?

Friday, December 17, 2004

Testing a hypothesis


Thursday, December 16, 2004

Auntie Catrin!!!

Yes, as of today, I am an aunt. To a niece Emma(50cm, 3000g, yay metric system), whose birthday is wonderfully mathematic: 16-12=4. I'll never forget that one...
Is it time to grow up?


Also, my sister passed up a perfectly good opportunity to get high and did it "the natural way". Well, I guess that's what you get when you're married to a guy who eats organically, uses more beauty products than I do, plays the Guitar and...well, works for a reckless Multinational.

Wednesday, December 15, 2004

New Developments in my Life

1. I got my Econ 213 paper back. 85%. I wrote that paper being miserable, half-drunk and sleep-deprived, and it really sucks. So, in the spirit of fairness, I have talked to our honourable Speaker and Director of Ombudservices Gregory Harlow about appealing for a lower mark. He mumbled something about being "unwilling to help with masochist endeavours like that". Whatever.

2. I got an A in Swahili. I almost peed my pants when I heard that, and by almost I mean completely. What is wrong with you teachers?
  • I suck at Swahili.
  • I missed more than a third of all classes.
  • I missed quizzes unexcused and was allowed to make them up weeks later.
  • I started studying for the final on the bus on my way there.

I just don't get it.

3. I wrote a final today. I planned to get up at 5.30 in the morning to do some studying, but being a dumb European and used to the 24hour clock, I fucked up that am and pm thing. AGAIN. And I guarantee you, it won't be the last time either.
But then, it turns out that half of that exam was multiple choice. Sometimes life is good.

4. I bought a shitload of CDs today. And that makes me happy. And not study. Oh, not studying. It feels so dirty during exam week, way better than all the not studying I did all year.

5. I love AC/DC.

I mean, come on, look at these lyrics...

She was a fast machine
She kept her motor clean
She was the best damn woman
I had ever seen
She had the sightless eyes
Telling me no lies
Knockin' me out with those American thighs
Taking more than her share
Had me fighting for air
She told me to come but I was already there
Cause the walls start shaking
The earth was quaking
My mind was aching
And we were makin it and you

Shook me all night long
Yeah you shook me all night long
Working double time
On the seduction line
She was one of a kind, she's just mine all mine
She wanted no applause
Just another course
Made a meal out of me and came back for more
Had to cool me down
To take another round
Now I'm back in the ring to take another swing'

Cause the walls were shaking
The earth was quaking
My mind was aching
And we were makin it and you -
shook me all night long.

Sunday, December 12, 2004

R.E.M. Walk Unafraid

Everyone walks the same
Expecting me to step
The narrow path they've laid
They claim to
Walk unafraid
I'll be clumsy instead.

Monday, December 06, 2004

The beauty of learning a foreign language.

The gist of my Swahili oral exam:

"Hello, woman. Is something the matter with you?"
"No, nothing, my friend, what about you?"
"I am peaceful. I like my hair!"
"Why thank you. Tell me, who is my husband?"
"Paul Simon. Do you have children?"
"Yes, I have cooked rice children and my boyfriend is Denzel Washington. I am traveling to reach Tokyo. Good Bye and we will see each other again."
"Good Bye, friend."

Ah, good times.

Saturday, December 04, 2004

It's still the same old story...a fight for love and glory

You must remember this
A kiss is still a kiss, a sigh is just a sigh
The fundamental things apply
As time goes by
And when two lovers woo
They still say, "I love you"
On that you can rely
No matter what the future brings
As time goes by

The Lost Boys of Sudan

1. Click on the link in the title.

2. Go rent the documentary and watch it. Now. I mean it.

There isn't a single second in that documentary that isn't wildly fascinating, touching, and eye-opening. And the best thing about it is, it convinces without any voiceovers whatsoever. Additionally, there's not a single note of cheesy background music to be had. Just plain life, as it happened to Peter and Santino, prompted by the slaughter of their families when they were toddlers.

As honest and straightforward, concise and thoughtprovoking, funny and sad, analytical and open-minded a documentary as can be.

Why are you still reading this?


Friday, December 03, 2004

I want to touch something old...

...and by that I don't mean that ham sandwich that has been sitting in my fridge for the last two weeks.
If you want to know what I mean by old, click on the title of this post and you will literally understand where I come from, and how sometimes neon lights and all night drugstores suffocate me.

Thursday, December 02, 2004

Click here and find out...

...why Dan Savage has just dropped about 3 spots in my men-I-would-marry-even-though-I-don't-believe-in-marriage list.

What did he do, you ask? He misuses the term 'ironically' in his current column. Oh, Dan, I would have expected better from you.

Wednesday, December 01, 2004

I googled myself...

Writer's blog...