The Secret Art of Whistling

“Stop whistling, Clemens. Only laborers whistle,” my great friend and teacher Christian K. used to say. Christian was Austrian, and like many citizens from that cutlet-shaped country,  leaned towards eccentricity. Highly sympathetic, but thank you for the advice. Meanwhile I am glad I listened to most of Christian‘s suggestions, and ignored this particular one.

Many years later I had an eye opening experience with music. As a birthday present, my wife gave me a weekend-long harmonica training. A crash course with a professional harmonica teacher, Dale King. At the end of which I walked from the experience with the rewarding conclusion that I would never be able to play ANY musical instrument. Except for a CD player or smartphone, my limbs are unable to extract any melodious or rhythmic sound from any instrument.

There is some truth in the statement that everybody can and should sing, but for once being modest, I admit that my singing capabilities are limited.

But I can whistle. The tunes that Yehudi Menuhin squeezed from his Stradivari after long years of tortuous practice, effortlessly leave my two lips with no practice at all (a few heretics, like my family members, disagree with this assessment).

Whistling – it truly seems to be a secret art. I couldn’t find any article or reference  about the effect of whistling on well-being, physical health, war and piece, the economy or whatsoever. There are no lists of famous Hollywood actors or politicians that indulge in this activity.

But I LOVE it. In fact, I will now render Puccini’s Madame Butterfly. Beats my vocal version by a length.

Read more here: http://clemenssuter.com/books

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Anyone for a game of Solitaire? Multiplayer Mode On!

Is Solitaire a game for multiple players? My answer: definitely yes. Playing as a team not only adds a lot of fun. Building on a coach’s expertise greatly intensifies the playing experience, as the below conversation illustrates.

Wife: “What are you playing?”

“A game of solitaire.”

“How does that work?”

“Just watch, it explains itself.”

A minute of silence.

Wife: “Put the red seven on the black eight.”

“Yes, I saw.”

“The black four. On the red five.”

“Thank you, yes.”

“Why do you put that ace at the top?”

“That’s part of the game. At the end you should collect all cards of the same kind in four stacks at the top.”

“Put the black jack on the queen of hearts.”

“I saw that one.”

“You’re not very fast at this. The three. Put the black three on the four of hearts. The three.”

“I saw that one.”

“The seven. You can put the seven on that eight. You’re really taking your time.”

“My hand cannot move as fast as your eyes. There’s a natural delay between the two actions that can’t be overcome.”

“The six! The six of diamonds on the seven of spades. On the seven!”

“Yes, I saw.”

“You’re really taking your time.”

“It isn’t about finishing within a certain time. It’s about finishing at all. It’s more strategic and meditative than competitive.”

“The red nine onto the ten.”

“They are the same color. That is not allowed.”

Some silence. Wife gets up and leaves: “Stupid game.”

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Find information about my books here or order them directly at amazon (paperback or kindle). Also available on iPhone

Playing the nine of hearts!

Solitaire. Probably not a team play

Some weekends I hardly have the energy to drag myself from one coffee house to the next.

After a full week of work, Saturdays are best spent drinking coffee and watching people walk by. A thoroughly exhausting yet highly rewarding activity.

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I’ve become a bit of a pro at this. I know most of the coffee houses in a 20 mile radius and I must spend hundreds of hours a year sipping the black poisonous liquid, accompanied by a sandwich or a piece of cake. I happen to be a teetolar and thus look for rewards elsewhere.

Happy Independence Day & Fourth Of July – Yankee Doodle America – Special #BookOffer #SpecialDeal #Promo

Only for the week of Independence Day: Clemens P. Suter eBooks from $2.99 for just $0.99. @Smashwords.

Enter the Smashwords store, order the books below, enter the code and download the eBooks to your device: and enjoy great rebates, it is as simple as that.

  • Fields of Fire – Use Code KP48X  
  • Two Journeys – Use Code ZT72Y
  • Celeterra – Use Code DM68Z 

These adventure novels never fail to entertain, well-written fiction that can’t be put down. Great books for a rainy day, to pack in your vacation suitcase or to read on the plane. Comments left by readers at Amazon: “Short message to Roland Emmerich and Quentin Tarantino: this is the story for your next film”   “An excellent title and a worthy read”   “Good reading”

Father and I went down to camp
Along with Captain Gooding
And there we saw the men and boys
As thick as hasty pudding.

Yankee doodle, keep it up
Yankee doodle dandy
Mind the music and the step
And with the girls be handy.

There was Captain Washington
Upon a slapping stallion
A-giving orders to his men
I guess there was a million.

And then the feathers on his hat
They looked so’ tarnal fin-a
I wanted pockily to get
To give to my Jemima.

Old Glory- the Star Springled Banner

Flag of the United States of America

www.clemenssuter.com

For the sake of the environment.

International business travelers and tourists will know the sign below: for the protection of the environment we ask you to use your towel more once.

Doubtful whether this is  driven by worries about the environment. Isn’t the true motivation something completely different? Shouldn’t the text read:

”Hello, this is to inform you that we do not care at all about the environment. What we do care about is our profit margin. Washing your dirty towel costs money. But we cannot put that on a sign, now can we, arf arf arf? We are betting that you DO worry about the environment more than we do, and that you will take this message seriously and that you are fully prepared to dry yourself with a dirty towel for the next four days of your stay. Or longer. Oh yes. And Thank YOU.”

Now, that would be in refreshing statement!

Or how about this?  “We do not think that it matters at all whether we clean one towel more – the environment is screwed up as it is. You get a clean towel every day whether you want it or not.  No use hiding your dirty towel in your suitcase; we will find it, as we rummage through it’s contents during our daily “security” check. Stop whining and suck it up.”

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Quiz time! Can you guess which famous leader used to live here? He must be turning in his grave.

Today a Chinese restaurant (“Peking Duck”), but once upon a time a very infamous man had his residence and offices behind these doors. Can you guess who? Ten points for the right answer to this quiz; five points for the most original reply. Read the answer below.

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The truth behind the duck:  Mr. Mengling Tang from China is the owner of a Chinese eatery in the Voßstraße in Berlin, exactly on the spot of the entry to Adolf Hitler’s “Neue Reichskanzlei” – the new chancellery. The building didn’t survive the ravages of war, within a few years after completion, the home of the brutal, weirdly mustachioed dictator was destroyed by allied bombs. Dear Adolf probably wouldn’t have clenched his little fists with pleasure, if he would have known about the repurposing of the site where his ugly government building (designed by his favorite architect Albert Speer) once stood. But then again, Maybes he is, in purgatory.

Top Tip to find Betelgeuse. Turn right on your way from Monoceros to Alzirr.

Always wondered how to find Betelgeuse?  The picture below will elucidate the location of this gigantic star.

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Betelgeuse is also called α Orionis. Betelgeuse is the true name, from the Arab yad al-ǧauzā, the hand of the giantess, and is a star in the Constellation Orion, sometimes also referred to as the shoulder star of Orion.

Why is Betelgeuse intriguing?

Betelgeuse is a giant star and is classified as a red super-giant. It has about a thousand times the diameter of our sun and has about ten thousand times as much luminosity, as a result of which Betelgeuse can easily be seen in the night sky, as it is the tenth brightest star. This star is of great astronomical interest. Its radius was the first to be determined by interferometry and it varies by about 15%. As a result, also Betelgeuse’s brightness varies a factor between +0.3 and + 0.6. This is one of the very few stars that are visible from Earth as a surface, not just a point in the sky. Most likely this star is an amazing 500 light years away!

More newspudding articles here: https://clemenssuter.com/?s=newspudding

In the opinion of astronomers, Betelgeuze will end up as a supernova. Opinions vary when this event will take place: It could happen within the next thousand or one hundred thousand years. The resulting supernova will be easily visible and will shine over the entire firmament. With a red giant of this type you can expect a 16,000-fold increase in the luminosity. This supernova could reach the brightness of the full moon. Luckily enough, the axis of rotation of the star does not point towards the Earth, and the gamma-ray flash would not be so strong that it would affect the Earth’s biosphere. Now, THAT would be a post-apocalyptic experience ! The remnant of this supernova is expected to be a neutron star based on the mass of 20 solar masses.

Shenanigans at an international business training. I need a stronger coffee.

Due to illness a colleague couldn’t attend a training and passed the invite to me. I hurriedly packed my bags, and drove to the large hotel where the event (“competitive research”) was taking place. I really didn’t expect any shenanigans, but it was a menacing venue, a skyscraper with (no doubt) all amenities and an undersized pool in the cellar. I stormed into the building. Many participants were already on site, almost exclusively men in black business suits with vests. Very friendly men, who ignored my jeans, shirt and the absent tie, but whom involved me immediately in conversation. Yes, they were also attending the M.E. event, yes it was going to be an exciting day. I lined up in the long queue to get my training material, all the while feeling more and more out-of-place. Finally, the friendly ladies at the reception illuminated me; this queue was for the M.E. event “IT for Banking”. I was booked for the M.E. event in the next building, reachable by the connecting bridge. I sighed with relief and waved farewell to my new friends; I never realized that banking CIOs were such a friendly bunch. I hurried over the bridge and found the correct meeting room, where a dozen participants and the single presenter (all dressed in a similar fashion as I) were just getting ready to start. With mild interest they listened too my tale, of how I had confused the two meetings. One participant (a representative from pharma) was still missing, explained the presenter, but he suggested to kick off anyway (he had met him previously, he said). We did a quick round of introductions and expectation setting, the usual stuff. The presenter started off on a lengthy and very dry presentation. I longed for a coffee (which I had missed due to the hullabaloo).

Twenty minutes in, and a man threw open the door. He stared at us, and we stared back. Sweaty and red-faced, he clutched his briefcase to his chest and made for the single free chair. He sat down, directly opposite of me, got out a notepad and picked up one of the pens on the table. I found this curious, as there was a pen visible in the pocket of the vest that he wore beneath his black suit. I, and some of the other participants, looked at the presenter with question marks in our eyes. But the presenter, undeterred, just kept on rambling on. In fact, he increased volume and speed. The man started to fidget about. He looked at the presenter, then at us. He played with his necktie. He picked up a brochure from the table and flipped through it, his face getting redder and redder. The tension in the room rose to an unbearable, mortifying level, the presenter talking faster and faster, the banker realizing from the narrative that this was the wrong meeting altogether, that this was not “IT for Banking”. After several excruciating minutes, I bent forward and whispered “this is not IT for Banking”. The presenter paused and looked at me, angrily for the interruption. The banker jumped up, mumbled an apology, and ran from the room, the door banging shut behind him. Ten minutes on, and one of the participants noted drily: “He forgot his briefcase.” The presenter ignored the statement and moved to the next chapter.

read more here: www.clemenssuter.com/books

A Hotel Lobby. Don’t worry if you need to enter such a place (e.g. for an international business training): a small hat, self-made out of aluminum foil, offers sufficient protection.

 

Top Five Tips for the SMART HOME of the future!

The SMART HOME of the FUTURE – everybody talks about it, but what does it really entail? Here’s your chance to get a close-up view of our SMART HOME, simplifying our life every day.

Below the center piece of our SMART HOME: our SMART SOFA. As a visitor sits down, the sofa automatically determines the weight of that person. Almost as if by magic. This weight information, together with age, sex, home address, and email details, as well as buying and sexual preferences, is automatically not transferred to a server system somewhere in Alaska (not owned by Facebook, Amazon or Google). This facilitates more meaningful and open conversations between host and visitor.

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Our SMART water collecting system. With the help of advanced gravity, rain water collected on the roof is transported into the container. Fully automated, the home owner can lift the lid to check water levels in the tank, and with a special receptacle (green, lower left), water can be distributed amongst the potted plants. (This was not necessary on the day this picture was taken, as the automated system noted sufficient precipitation through visual and haptic detection).

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Our SMART HEATING SYSTEM. If a family member gets cold, a piece of wood is inserted into the receptacle, and lighted with a small Sulphur stick. As it takes long to get a fire going, strain and frustration will sufficiently increase body temperature.

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Below our SMART BURGLARY ALERT SYSTEM. With 24/7 availability, this four-legged burglar alarm immediately emits a loud sound as anyone gets close to the house (30 feet will do, thank you). This includes not only fiends, but any guest or even family member. This alarm is always accompanied by a visual signal (moving tail, tennis ball in mouth) and in some instances amplified by the sound of crashing cutlery or glass, dropped by unsuspecting and shocked witnesses. In contrast to ordinary networked alarm systems, the SMART BURGLAR ALARM of the FUTURE cannot be hacked through cyber-criminal-led brute-force attacks.

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Our SMART DISHWASHER allows the SMART HOME to save on electricity and water (large amounts of valuable resources, energy & water are needed to produce, transport and recycle ordinary dishwashers). Fully automated, the SMART DISHWASHER alerts the family members that it is full to capacity (as on this picture) and after longish debate and negotiation, rinse & dry cycles commence. A pleasant view of the inner court is offered through the kitchen window.

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Impressed? Intrigued? You too can live in the SMART HOME of the FUTURE ! Learn more about the SMART ENTERTAINMENT CENTER here: www.clemenssuter.com/books.