April 29, 2008

Major Tom Says "Fuck Houston!"

  Albert Hofmann 1906 -2008

That The Problem others don't want to take to their deathbed, is one of an odd geography is most evident. That it might be of the bed's geography, however odd that may sound, has not really come out. (The benefit of the doubt is given only to chewing idiots nonetheless - one learns from experience.) The Problem is after all a problem of space: of invasion and occupation. What else can you actually invade and occupy apart from spatial parameters? However hairy, what else is there but odd little spaces to go in them and do your sit-in? Hm? As Woody Allen's reiteration goes - not far from another failed Jewish sex scene - politicians do tend to do it country-wide. If this is some sort of post-agricultural bourgeios syndrome really has to wait for another session. What some of them claim as a source is their polygamous leanings, and ours having grown up with at least two mothers at any given time, not to mention all the toy-boys, the gigolos and the sugar-daddys hanging around left and right you can't blame them. For others it's a racying heart (ain't I a fucking risque cunning tongue master?!) unable to commit to one and thus trying to put them all in, stuff it real nice; but a certain impotence is what usually nurtures transference. Sorry babes. In a country were the precedent of pill-taking has neither critical nor Leary-ean connotations, but at most an ad-hoc Sunday column in a paper and random lunchtime TV cameos, whiskey in hand, which one can nowadays get without even leaving their bedroom and with only just a webcam (the pixelated imago, not the whiskey), no eggs are broken, because really no eggs are sucked. The goose, God bless her, is brightly brightly laying them about so no hard feelings. And anyway in case you haven't got your own plot to plough, there are the 04:00 egg-eating, free-rangers of Liberation Square or gracing their namesake Heros' Memorial down under. Transference rules! No egg is even egged to going up the wall, not to roll out of the nest, steal a tart and go down the rabbit hole! What nonsense that would be, wouldn't it! Yes, the wall has lost its firmness a bit, elasticity treacling down,cleavage not enough to hold it up, getting a bit more roomy, a bit more accommodating, but all this air going in and out, through it, doesn't really help. People get cold and rush into shops to warm up, have quick awkward drinks and skip the chit-chat, as there is only enough blood for one stiffness, to carry one being Allenic. And socks are a no-no nowadays, not to mention gloves (wooly, not elastic mind you).

So what do you do? Surely this is a problem for the local authorities to take care. Bring it down to first (or third) base. Suggestions anyone? Well certainly. Thanks for asking. In that long and narrow wedge, with their share of socialism and their share of coups, they wouldn't let their citizens chill, would they? Major Tom's protein pill was enlisted to help with the "quality of life". We got balloons and honey-balls. Bloody transference objects again! And we keep calling guys with three names to sort it out for us and talk to them about deathbeds and who we don't want to do it with. Is this some form of kink? Do we really enjoy threesomes and voyeurism so much or is this a residue of our collective post-masturbatory guilt, when in the '60's, when everyone was into orgies and all this soixante-huit 69's, we kept waving it around and coming all over the place, unable to actually invade anything?

But Viagra - now that's what I call a reapproachment-based solution. Yes, the Santiagoans got this age restriction in place. But don't you secretly yearn for all those grandfatherly treats? You should go check it out if you do. I know of a good pill-giving doctor if it comes to that. Think of all the illegal possibilities! I can't do everything for you.

Petition anyone?

April 27, 2008

The Church Going Atheist

Just like any other proud Stravaralander (Doucheland [sic] Über Alles!) who lives abroad, I try to keep my country's traditions alive with me, usually by devouring massive quantities of souvla which I then proceed to wash down with gallons of Stravaraland produced lager. Xanthippe (my fiance) on the other hand, does her part by dragging me to church on religious Holidays, a triumphant achievement considering that she manages to convince me solely by way of threats of physical violence.

When Xanthippe dragged me to last night's worship (Christ risen by the way) I expected that the experience would be as exhausting as that of the last couple of nights I had attended liturgy, where, faced with extreme boredom, I was forced to entertain myself by fantasizing about playing Super Mario Bros whilst humming the game's tune, scaring the toddlers in front of me to tears with my Barbara Streisand impression, and trying to imagine how a Metallica concert arranged so as to accompany Byzantine liturgical music would sound like (Hammett would own the akathiston imnon) .

To my surprise tonight was very different. Firstly, I discovered that Xanthippe and I have a telepathic connection. This came about when she poked me with her elbow and warned me to stop thinking up sarcastic comments about the priest's appeal for funds, and secondly, that she has a sense of humor--and akin to mine no less! Noticing I was about to doze off she performed an R rated puppet show for me using just our church candles. When she realized that this was not enough, she picked up her candle again and this time she decided to use it against me as a lightsaber. Needless to say, her sissy pink candle-lightsaber was no match for my manly blue candle-lightsaber. So what if the (realistic) sound effects of our lightsabers whooshing through the air annoyed a few people. We had fun.

Indeed, time flies when you are having fun. Anyhoo, Xanthippe unilaterally discontinued our epic battle, with promises of a rematch, when it was finally time for God to pass the holy fire on to the priest.

(I'm not a graphic artist, get off my case)

Apparently the priest had bitter previous experience because he thought it necessary to make the following request prior to retiring to the altar to later reemerge bearing the holy fire:

"Please, when I return with the holy fire, don't push one another, there's enough to go around."

About 6-7 people including myself and Xanthippe burst into laughter. I tried to suppress it by picturing dead kittens. This only made matters worse. I laughed even harder. I don't know what it was that i found so funny about dead kittens but i did, i found it hilarious. Perhaps I should look into it. Perhaps I shouldn't.

Anyway, the priest finally retired to the altar and all the lights in the Church were turned off. I turned to Xanthippe and told her to be prepared because when the lights would come back on again, the priest would be lying on the floor (priests usually lie standing up or sitting down) dead and Sherlock Holmes would forbid us from leaving the Church until he solved the mystery and that she would therefore be the one to blame if I don't pass my exams because she dragged me to church in the first place (i had to try). I didn't want to spoil the ending for her so I didn't tell her that the murder would be committed by the one-legged lesbian chorister who fell in love with the priest's papathkia and wanted to do away with the competition.

After the lights came back on the priest was still alive and it became clear that i am clinically insane and that things didn't turn out as i had predicted moments earlier. Apparently the chorister cowered at the last moment and decided to refrain from setting the plan in motion. She does not deserve the papathkia anyway. One-legged bitch...

After that we went outside, where the church people decided to bomb the shit out of several flocks of seagulls sleeping on rooftops and tree branches by sending a firework to the sky (sorry folks, no lamprajia). The seagulls were visibly frustrated as they flew confused around in circles above our heads. For a moment it looked as though a shit-storm was about to hit by way of retaliation. The alternative would be a one time only live stage performance of Alfred Hitchcock's Birds. Luckily the birds let it go.

After that we decided to make our way home. Os ta xristougenna eshei o theos.

April 23, 2008

Primetel: The best ISP on Earth

The somewhat offensive content of the post that once occupied this space has been temporarily removed. It's an ex-post. It has gone to meet its maker. This is an official gesture of good faith. The comments, however, remain as it is good for certain 'anonymous' commenters to make fools of themselves in public. Sorry, couldn't resist!

As this problem is being sorted out after a mere 3 months, during which time the demographics of this neighbourhood or wireless usage has not fluctuated, I will retain my sense of guarded optimism.

Also, if there is a slimy worm out there in Ayios Andreas who suddenly found out that their wi-fi connection has also gone to meet its maker, my message is a simple get stuffed!

Let's wait and see. I have already informed the technical staff at Primetel that if this problem persists I will hunt them down like stray animals and give them a healthy dose of pepper spray.

April 22, 2008

Ship it Over

Yes, all our water related woes are now over. Let's start hosing down the garden. According to unsubstantiated rumours, Photis and Tassos will be picking up the bill.

The deal was clinched by Ocean Tankers. I just hope they don't use one of these to ship the stuff over. More on the subject here.

Makarios Picture of the Day

Click on any player for larger archbishop.

Here we have Archbishop Makarios of Kenya with the Makarios football team. According to the Cyprus News Agency, the new uniforms were supplied by Demetris Sophocleous.


Today's European Court of Human Rights judgments can be found here.

April 21, 2008

Pseudobra? A Voyage of Discovery

A three year old Greek Cypriot embarks on his own voyage of discovery, thanks to the Ledra Street crossing.

April 20, 2008

Someone in Hanoi Loves Us

The Cyprus News Agency featured this piece on its front page over the weekend. The English language version can be found here. Who needs water when the world is on our side?

April 19, 2008

Wanna Wash My Feet?

Photis must be ecstatic, as his legacy is honoured by the present regime. As the island's water runs dry no one out there has taken the former incompetent minister to task. Where the hell is this buffoon and why has a warrant for his arrest not materialised? Where are the journalists who ought to be hunting him down? Of course, the current regime is not without blame for the current tragic mess, so I suppose we'll keep as quiet as them even though we are not accessories to a crime.

But Easter is a time to pull the wool over the eyes of unquestioning citizens. The water board has promised the people of Stravaraland more water during Easter. Wow, thanks, a bonus amount of an essential commodity. Maybe we'll have enough water to wash both our feet! But as we prepare to import water the rumours are already out. The unsubstantiated rumours are already circulating, putting the cost at 7 Euro a tonne. Has anyone questioned this cost? No.

If water is part of moron Photis' legacy another is undoubtedly lamb. You know, the meat that comes from the animals among which there was an epidemic last year. Yes, the authorities tell us that 97% of the lamb provided for consumption over Easter will be local because it's safe and patriotic. I think I'll risk it by trying to score some of the remaining 3%.

April 17, 2008

Clear by Lettering

Don’t you just love the way politicians, organizations, political parties, even individuals like me come out clean when something improper happens?

Diagorou street was probably the only street in Nicosia that had more trees than potholes. That being unacceptable in 2008’s Nicosia was quickly spotted and the mayor sent her troops down to clear (Ok, she actually outsourced the job to a private company). Rather than drilling potholes, they found it easier to cut down all the trees from the left side of the street. The word out on the street is that the trees from the opposite side will soon follow.

Being a true Cypriot, I did not and will not do anything about this, even though it bothers me a lot! The bad thing is that I feel guilty about it, but this is depleting slowly as I do "my duty" writing this. I promise you that last word of this article will flush the last bit of guilt out my guilt sack so I can continue to prosper with a clean conscious. The same thing works fine with the Green Party’s Partridge who wrote a letter that he will later bring up to say “Of course I complained. Its all on this page”. The difference is that I have never claimed to be and was not voted to be the Robin Hood of the environment (at this point I performed a partial flush of my guilt sack). Maybe the Partridge was the one responsible to saddle up the horse, run to Diagorou and climb up the trees to defend them.

All I need to care is the future of my children… When they ask me why Nicosia has no trees, I will point them to this site…

Sack’s clean !

April 14, 2008

The Look

Our Comrade President seen here with Czech Prime Minister, Marek Topolanek

April 12, 2008

Ice Cream, Anyone?

Details of the impromptu (and unofficial) ice cream visit can be found here.

April 10, 2008


It appears impossible nowadays to even go out for a coffee without the discourses of power moving across the lines of fancy to appropriate imaginative concepts, you fancifully thought were about to puke out. Yet this first transmission of ours within the spaces of four-eyed, cross-eyed, near-blind wisdom dissemination, after an FM's invitation to contribute, will not be marked by another discussion of arche-positions of authorship and typing. If anything as members of this ministerial council for quite a while we have a portfolio, a gnostic affair. And to its administration we stick.

To go on hear (sorry, here) about the relationship of aurality and audition with Cypriot politics would be out of place: an mp3 will enlighten even the most blind reader of this blog. The voice is familiar. What is most pressing is the potty pot of a semiology of the pots, dithering witheringly across other screens. The partiality by which its analysis has been contacted is not to be found only in the psychoanalyticly derived position of Panicos Hadjipanayi vis-a-vis discharging and secretion, not to mention the phenomenology of the broadcasting corporation's toilet seats. Ok it was a Costas Constantinou who fronted it - but don't we all know that the buffet was set by someone with experience in the art de la table (including seating arrangements and other chair-related matters)? It is upon such understanding that we suggest the furthering of the exploration of pot-related pot imports-related reseacrh into other than of culinary use. Not receiving halloumi can not be seen as a mere coincidence either.

It is of course understandable that aided by the often defended superiority and wealth of the Greek language -if not here in other related fora- the pot has been traced back to things gastronomical. Oh c'mon: don't you go to pot. Mimic Nicosia and subtract a line. Having never really had the chance to develop potamology, this pot-bellied potage is a laudable pot-valor. Especially within the contexts of a water preservation campaign. We have all after all seen what water does to the bottom of boats. Yet the pot's potence is a hot potato that needs to picked up and not be pot-bound to the burbling pot that has been recently been seen rambling along this desert land of ours.

One forgets, or indeed would like to forget and have us forget, that the figure of the pot has not just been traveling along geometrical and geographical locales, but also across four-eyed wifes' hands. What are we to think by Ogias presentation of a pot of lilies to Elsi while days earlier another pot was collapsing under the weight, wait, of Pittokopitis? What contribution to the above and below mentioned semiology of the pot does the recent anti-pot campaigns by the police in relation to the potty discourse about Ledras' pots? Did Pittokopitis know of them before getting up a pot to trim branches? Or was the pot simply wet? Is this pot-exchange another clue to the kind of solution promoted, one of give and take, one of sharing monopolies? Will the estate of Takis Stavrinides sue for royalties? Will girls formerly monopolising the pot's adjectival use be forced to learn how to tango if they are to keep their current positions? Will Olympia Doukakis claim her experiences next to John Travolta in "Look Who's Talking Too" [Pee-pee in the po-tty. :||] and hijack Antroullas Vassileiou's EU role, as all these pot business come down to health and safety matters?

Spotted above is a mention to the desert. Introducing pots to the desert is of course one of the pottiest ideas ever as any pot-trained person would tell you. Yet we've done it. Without even a David Hasselhoff in sight. Even though spatially we might have wanted to make away with pots and plastic sheeting (copious amounts of Pomerol would be a possible alternative) to go on about the flower pots promiscuity is such a pooh-bah's pooh-pooh. Witholding ourselves from another po'd anti-authoritarian criticism of the police's affinity with pot - since it's them who have been primarily flirting with them bloody pots- we would like to refer to the melting pot of the ink pot inscribing poco a poco the podia given to us: the aporia.

Are we, finally, talking about nature or culture?

April 09, 2008

Flower Pot Power

Matters pertaining to CyBC correspondents and their fascination with flower pots can also be discussed here.

Flower Pots

CyBC's Costas Constantinou's fascination of the Ledra Street flower pots (and their semiological implications, as expressed by this veritable titan of TV news) has given us food for thought.

Pictured here is a flower pot heater that we could have the UN procure in time for the cold weather, for instance. These are perfect as they do not require watering (does anyone know whether Photis is in any way connected to the new minister's pledge/wish regarding the provision of water to our parched island, by the way?) and are pretty good at warming passers by.

However, I feel a more 'Cypriot' solution would be to line the buffer zone with some of these. Cook-offs can then be organised by the UN as part of a general rapprochement thingy. In order for this to be done right (as in "correct ingredients" - 'scuse the pun) we ought to decide what percentage of the contestants ought to be Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot respectively. Meat is another question that needs to be dealt with, of course.

Any thoughts?

National Council Picture of the Day

click on any president to enlarge

April 08, 2008

Green Line Tango

With so many people and the majority of the media (with CyBC still carrying the Tassos cross, leading the way) having tried to throw a dampener on the Ledra Street opening, it's great to see what is probably the most uplifting demonstration of a brilliant attitude in full celebration swing. It almost makes up for all the crap we've heard so far from the 'kodjakares' as Patroclos calls them.

|ADDENDUM| The Green Line Tanguero (who, by the way, was celebrating his birthday on the day he danced across the Green Line on Ledra Street) has asked us to make public the following clarification:
"I consider it my solemn obligation to make it clear to the blogging community that no flowerpots were harmed, or even moved, during the making of this video. Also no passports, ID cards, or other official documents of the Republic of Cyprus were disturbed or disarrayed. But at least one tango dancer hasn't been quite herself since, and several kodjiakares have been regurgigating more than the usual quantity of bile, for both of which consequences of my actions I am happy to assume any and all responsibility.


the Green Line Tanguero."

Flowerpots, Lefkaritika and a Megabitch

The so-called First Lady met with Comrade Leader Jimmy's wife yesterday. What is interesting is that the two were referred to by the media by their names and as wives of the leaders of the two communities in Cyprus.

Mrs Talat brought Mrs Christofia a potted flower to symbolise peace and Mrs. Christofia gave Olya a lefkaritiko to symbolise patience and ripping off tourists.

Mrs Talat also mentioned that after having coffee they did peer into the cup and that the future looked bright. Or words to that effect.

Of course, someone had to throw their two euro cents in as well and it seems the task fell to MegaVictor who quipped: "Maybe, in order to see what the future holds for the island we should take a look at Mrs. Erdogan's coffee cup". Looking at my Nescafe dregs, I predict Victor would pose a danger to any adversary in a catfight.

April 07, 2008

Headed for Ledra Street

The Olympic Flame just about made it through London, despite Tibetan protesters trying to grab it and transport it to No Man's Land in Ledra Street. Demetris Syllouris has assured the Tibetans that the flame will be kept safe and out of the reach of the Beijing Olympic Committe. This assurance was made possible by the Archbishop's generous offer of flame sanctuary in No man's Land. "Let us not forget that it's only called No man's Land because it belongs to God who has handed over the area to the Church of Stravaraland for safekeeping" stressed Tommy 2.0

Did Anyone Pry That Gun Away?

April 04, 2008

Ledra Street Picture of the Day

Comments, Anyone?

Primetel Sucks!!!

If you want an ISP that is useless go for Primetel. It's easy... every time you have a problem with their crappy connection their 'support' dorks will probably tell you it's your computer's fault or the weather's lousy or your electricity supply is at fault. Or maybe your dog bites ... "that's not my dog"...

April 03, 2008


O 'Grafikos' Dimarchos

Quick quiz for people who don't know very much but like to talk a lot:

Q. When was Nicosia divided?
A. In January 1964. (Not 1974)

Q. What is the Green Line?
A. The line drawn in a green felt pen (called chinagraph at the time) by a British officer across the map of Nicosia at points where armed Greek and Turkish Cypriots were facing each other after days of fierce fighting. (UNFICYP had not yet arrived and the ceasefire line has nothing to do with the Turkish invasion)

Q. Why?
A. Because President Makarios and Vice-President Kutchuk had realised that matters had got out of control, or their control, and asked the Brits as a guarantor power to help. (It was not imposed by foreign powers).

Q. What had set the violence off?
A. Too complicated to explain in a quick quiz.

Q. Why wasn't the problem sorted out quickly?
A. Stubbornness, stupidity, insularity, chauvinism, the Cold War etc. etc.

People forget that until 1974 we could still drive around most of Cyprus, avoiding Turkish enclaves, and frankly marginalising the Turkopliktoi as they were called at the time, the displaced of Lefka, Omorphita, Neapolis etc., and completely ignoring the fact that some Turkish villages were abandoned. People moved out of central Nicosia over the years because the Green Line was there, 1974 was just the death sentence to an ailing, tired community.

In 1970 an MP called Lellos Demetriades said 'Cyprus for the Cypriots', was immediately branded a traitor and put on the Athens junta's black list. As mayor of Nicosia he was branded a traitor again because he made the brave step of meeting with the Turkish Cypriot mayor (not pseudo or so-called because there are two mayors of Nicosia under the 1960 constitution, one of the terms which caused so much grief from 1960-1963) and agreeing to the setting up of the Nicosia Sewage Board. By the time of the Nicosia Master Plan people were beginning to come round to the idea that it might be practical if at any time in the future, if there was ever a solution, Nicosia was unified and streets didn't end up in concrete walls. Lellos always believed the time would come. He travelled the whole world and impressed everyone he met with his vision of Cyprus for the Cypriots (except for the Cypriots themselves). He underlined the division of his city and his island to everyone he spoke to, he put up the plaque at the end of Ledra Street saying The Last Divided Capital of Europe.

He fought with all his heart and so when the Ledra Street barricade at last came down after 44 years he was there saying let us enjoy the moment, it's not the solution to the Cyprus problem but it's a small step towards it, it's a crack in the wall. And being Lellos he lashed out against all the negative comments being run by most of the commentators sitting in the television studios, the eternal discussions about whether the Turkish soldiers had pulled back, whether they were still lurking around, whether they were there but in civilian clothes, whether the Turkish Cypriot policemen had stepped over the line, whether Christofias had caved in to the Turks.

In the Sigma studio Koutalianos of EDEK went ballistic, launching a vicious attack on Lellos ending in the demeaning phrase: 'katantisen grafikos' (difficult to translate into English for non-Greek speakers, literally picturesque but meaning eccentric, out of it, not worth considering).

Bravo Koutaliané! What have you ever done for Cyprus except bored everyone to tears with your monotonous, pompous, chauvinistic pronouncements.

April 02, 2008

Potatoes & Halloumi

Third helicopter, eh? Hm, this opens a window of opportunity and future innovation. When the third helicopter arrives it would be a good idea to get the pilot up to speed by implementing a new and innovative programme. This revolutionary plan would be implemented in two stages.

STAGE ONE: Potato prices have gone to hell in a hand-basket. By using the newly leased helicopters we will start carpet bombing potato fields with salt water. There is a good chance the crops will become resistant to salt water, thus giving us a new, niche crop - the salt water potato.

Once the success of the project is assured, we get Photis to go for the double whammy of trademarking our new crop and halloumi at the same time, thus saving the taxpayer a serious chunk of change. We'll need however to buy a snazzy apartment or house in Brussels so that our man can get on with it and be in a position to entertain and conduct a bit of his own business on the side.

This may make up for the fact that unless the deal for the 3rd chopper was made by Photis himself he will make up for the lost revenue that would have come in the form of a kickback. One last thing to remember about the salt water potatoes is the niche marketing and the astronomical price the crop will command. The state can compensate the farmers while the experiment is underway and make up for the losses from the insane profits that will be generated by the Salt Water Potato Promotion Council which can be headed by Photis upon his return from Brussels.

STAGE TWO: Twice a week the helicopters will overfly urban areas and douse us all with water. Those opting to take a shower will stand naked in predetermined areas for the al fresco shower. Also, idiots would not need to water concrete and gravel every afternoon, thus immediately saving tons of our precious natural resource. Trees and vegetation will also eventually become resistant to salt water and thus we can put our newly leased helicopters to full time use for the salvation of the country.

Gimme Choppers

The Council of Ministers decided today to rent three helicopters. Well, actually, the decision was to lease 3 instead of 2 firefighting helicopters in time for the impending bone dry summer we all expect.

It would be a good idea for the Council to also have a meeting with the Arsonists' Collective to make sure that any fires started during the summer months are close enough to the sea so hat the choppers can put them out fast and effectively. Taking a good look at power lines would also be a good idea.

It is unclear whether Photis Photiou will be hired as an emergency consultant.

Carla the Greek

Some may feel there is a very thin line between the usual fare served up by Stravaraland's media and the traditional April Fool's prank story. The main focus in the local press was Ledra Street and water. And the most believable story was the one that appeared in Machi, claiming that the government ha been supplying the geographical north with water for over two years. I say believable in view of the hysteria usually peddled by a number of newspapers who seem to employ patriotic bricklayers with tourette's instead of journalists. The Cyprus Mail roundup sums up the local fare.

Having put up with the recent spate of Carlamania, as the Sarkozy couple visited Britain, I personally thought Eleftheros Tipos in Athens had the best article. Carla Bruni, it seems hails from the northern Greek village of Aedonohori. The story features a picture with Carla and her uncle from said village, Theodoros Brounis. And the best extra tidbit in the story: "although many people know of Nicolas Sarkozy's roots in Thessaloniki...".

What I would like to have seen in the local press, in view of the water cuts, would have gone along the lines of "Photis Photiou charged with criminal negligence over water shortage"