blixa bargeld
books, challenge, favorites

Reading challenge; A book about a road trip

When it comes to Blixa Bargeld’s Europa kreuzweise I lack all sorts of judgement.

This could have been my pick for the A book that’s guaranteed to bring you joy category; I’ve read it before, I liked it before. Obviously. But since I’ve already selected and read a book for the cateogry, the road trip category will do nicely.

I’d like to think I’m not biased; I don’t like all things Neubauten do. Their latest release for one thing, it just wasn’t my cup of tea. Couldn’t even pull through a total of 5 minutes of a recording of the live show. But that’s more of an exception to the rule I suppose.

It is likely my fan status colors my read of this book.

This is a peculiar little book; like Nick Cave’s Sick Bag Song that I’ve previously mentioned, it doesn’t quite follow the rules.

Essentially, this is Blixa Bargeld describing Einstürzende Neubauten’s 2007 European tour for the Alles Wieder Offen album. This is my fave record of theirs. I saw them on this tour too, in Glasgow, obviously. It was where I lived in 2007. What I’m getting at is; books about events that have somehow been a part of your life are probably more likely to appeal to you. Another reason I might not be seeing things clearly. But since when is seeing things clearly any kind of fun?

Moving on!

While the story, if that’s what you want to call it, is told in chronological order, with the occasional flashback, it’s more like series of observations relating to travel, restaurants, hotels, shows. It feels as if the book is more aimed towards conveying a feeling, as opposed to telling a story.

I’m assuming this is why Bargeld includes the setlist, the same setlist every night (maaaybe…? To be honest I only noted that it was a playlist, I didn’t read each of them through with any kind of care.)

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I did mention in another post how I disliked the inclusion of lyrics in this very book. I take it back! This time around, I quite like it. Maybe it’s because I haven’t been listening to Neubauten that regularly lately; it’s nice with a bit of a reminder of one of many reasons I like this band. Also, it is one of my favorite pieces of lyrics. Of all the lyrics, not just Neubauten. (Clearly, I have a whole lot faves…)

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Bargeld’s use of words always did appeal to me. Likewise his choice of subject. There’s often a feeling of waiting, emptiness, pointlessness, time standing still, observation and no judgement. Or at least that’s my interpretation. I have no interest in being objective here so there’s no use telling me I’m wrong. Let’s just do one more favorite, a quote:

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Ich bin ein Forschungsreisender ohne Auftrag, Fachgebiet und Reiseziel. //  I’m an explorer without mission, speciality and destination.

I also love his dry sense of humour. Like this part where he’s trying to call the front desk of the hotel .

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He is one bitter old man and I find it funny.

This book is somewhere between poetry and fiction. In fact, I’d go so far as to say it has more in common with poetry than fiction.

I love this little book, if you ever stumble on it you could well give it a read. It’ll take a couple of hours tops; even if your German is shaky.

xo,

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challenge, music

Reading challenge; The first book you see in a bookstore

So this is another one of the books I bought in London, and this one I’m sad to say is a miss.

It’s Elizabeth Mckenzie’s The Portable Veblen. It’s not that it’s bad. It’s just not my cup of tea.

Basically, it’s the story of Veblen and Paul. Who are supposed to be in love. And this is a major problem I have with this book; I don’t see how these two people are in love and engaged to be married. I just don’t. It’s not even that they don’t have common ground, I’ve come to understand that’s not a prerequisite for two people to be involved (?? what do I know ??), it’s just how they behave towards each other. I can’t shake the feeling that they’re just complete strangers. Bottom line: not buying it. I’m not convinced these two people are in love.

Also. I’m usually a fan of eccentric female leads. But I have no sympathy for or interest in Veblen. I much prefer Paul who, in addition to having a quite gory and interesting job, at times is petty, bitter, jealous, you know, he’s a human being with flaws. I like flaws. And also, people who are in hate with the world. I like them.

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I suppose the worst thing you could say about Veblen is she has an irrational relationship with squirrels, but otherwise seems to not be a bad person. Both of which bothers me. Too happy and walking around talking to squirrels. She reminds me of Amélie from Montmartre. Now I don’t dislike Amélie, but I think that has to do with narration, perspective, and the overall feel of the story. For me, it works in Amélie, it doesn’t work here. And especially not for 400 goddamn pages. If the book was about Paul only…I would not hate it. At all. Had I not paid for this book, I would probably not have finished it.

Also wondering about the choice to include a few lines in Norweigan, no tranlsation. Example:

Elizabeth McKenzie the portable veblen

I mean it’s fine for us Scandinavians, but other readers? Say this was Russian. I wouldn’t be happy. I also don’t see the point. Is it some sort of brag? Check me out I know some Norwegian ? I just don’t get it.

There’s also sometimes pictures (?? you don’t trust your ability to paint the picture using words ??), and I’ve always hated when the author includes other texts in her story. E.g. in this book there are texts that Veblen wrote as a kid inserted. Can’t take it. Can’t even take when Blixa Bargeld includes his own lyrics in Europa kreuzweise; and I like his lyrics (like is a severe understatement, I’d have them tattooed on my body if I was into tattoos), and the book too. As a matter of fact, I think I’ll be including it in the challenge. I need something to put my faith back in the written word after this.

This is the part where you tell me I’m just not understanding the book at all, that I got it all wrong. Go on then!

xo,

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books, face paint, favorites, life, music

Weekly wrap up; Birthday week

Like the introvert I am I don’t particularly like to mention my birthday at all. Might draw attention to myself. The. Horror. 

In this context though, I feel it needs to be mentioned. Because I set out to have just a little bit of a decadent week. So you know, I did this on purpose.

I started by ignoring my reading challenge and reread 2 of my favorite booksBlixa Bargeld’s Europa kreuzweise and Tiffanie DeBartolo’s How to kill a rockstar. The latter is one ridiculous novel, and from a feminist POV it’s… well garbage is probably an appropriate word, if you want to be nice you’d say it’s problematic, regardless I do love it.

Bargeld’s book always makes me want to have a glass of wine, a glass of wine, a glass of wine. So I did. Have wine. Many glasses.

And apparently, there shall be more wine. Because sis gave me my fave type wine glasses.

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Watched the No more shall we part recording session documentary for the 5784th time. The Blixa again, main reason to watch this. His dancing, his pin stripe suit + fuchsia tie, his throwing a fit when The guitar is not in my headphones.

Then I bought lots of makeup I don’t need. A matte Sleek palette + the ever so popular Sleek highlighter palette Solstice, as well as two NYX Lingerie; Beauty Mark + Corset. Having tried it all out, I was very happy with my purchases.

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Provided me with a new fave combo makeup; the shade Orbit from the Sleek eyeshadow palette + the NYX Lingerie in Corset. Fave makeup of the week easy.

While at H&M, I just couldn’t resist buying even more makeup. Necessity doubtful: one H&M yellow matte eyeshadow and 2 H&M mascaras. I ♥ H&M as Blixa would say. In Europa kreuzweise. If he liked H&M at all. I’m suspecting no. PS. mascaras work for ppl with sensitive eyes + if you want to buy CF. Just saying.

If I bought clothes while at H&M? Do you have to ask? 3 tops + 1 long cardi, and then also 1 pair of low-waist jeans from Monki (please come back in style, this high-waist shit does not work well for me); which is practically H&M if we’re being honest. No shorts tho, boo. I really wanted more shorts. Wanted; not needed.

On Wednesday, instead of a workout and dinner, I had a few pieces of liquorice + big glass of wine → early bed. Zero fucks given. And I’m sure the best way to treat a migraine.

Treated myself to some straightened and volumized (is that a thing?) hair. I’ve missed my hot tools. I ♥ hot tools.

9 o’clock workout on Saturday morning. Might sound awful but it is my fave. I’d do it every week if I lived in the same city as this gym. Bonus: they played My Chem at the workout. Finally! A track that makes sense.

I ordered books; part 2 in Carol Goodman’s Blythewood series, Johanne Hildebrandt’s EstridLiv Strömqvist’s Uppgång & fall – in addition to which I was gifted 4 books.

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Yesss. That might just be the final nail in the coffin for my reading challenge. I’ve got all these books to read! I ain’t got time for no challenge. I’ll see if I can be creative, but if no, then the challenge has got to go.

Soundtrack of the week:

New discovery via the Spotify Discover weekly; track that convinced me: Salvation. Really, my soundtrack should have been vi är så nära nu, det är så långt kvar; i.e. Den brända jorden by Jonathan Johansson. Because that’s what it feels like. This month cannot end soon enough.

 

xo,

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music

What I’ve been watching on YouTube lately

Sometimes, my TV-provider calls me up asking if I’d like some new channels. Oh not for free obviously. Last time they called I informed them I couldn’t remember last time I turned on my TV; I was zero percent interested in whatever they had to offer.

So the poor sales-boy tried arguing that surely I streamed, surely that meant I had an interest in TV? JFC. Do you even know what streaming is? The whole point of streaming is having the choice when and where. Last I checked, that is not how TV worked.

Either way. With the occasional exception of a series loosely based on historic events, I mainly watch YouTube. 14-year-old me is living a fucking dream. It’s like having control of MTV.

I do watch vlogs, makeup tutorials and the likes, but mostly, I just watch music type material. Quite a lot of crap quality old MTV. This one is a favorite:

I’m sorry but I do love how absolutely ridiculous it is. PS. Read the presenter’s book The Kennedy Chronicles fairly recently, loved it. If you’re even mildly interested in MTV and 90s music, I do recommend giving it a read.

I’ve also been revisiting Nick Cave; thought I’d seen it all (managed to fit two instances of Nick Cave obsession into my life so far) but this was new to me:

“I want to tell you about a girl” just doesn’t get old. Also love it that they play all of the latest record. I’m obsessed with bands playing an entire album in order at shows. Obsessed.

Also enjoyed this ridiculous German interview with Blixa and Nick. In case you’re not interested in Blixa and/or Nick, but you do take an interest in language, you might still find this interesting:

Is this actually watchable/understandable if you understand German only? Knowing both languages it just makes me all sorts of confused. Unless it has nothing to do with knowing two languages; it’s two people speaking at once! How are you supposed to focus?

While I do despise people filming at shows, as I’m sure we all do, I do also love being able to watch a show that I’ve actually attended afterwards. Lately, I’ve been watching this one:

Quality is not something I bother with.

xo,

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