Monday, 28 November 2011

Winter break approaching

Winter break approaches, and as a German soccer fan, it feels too long. The Bundesliga teams will hibernate into the new year and players get to spend time with their families, then head into the sunny south for training camp.

I'm still used to the routine, but when the break comes and comes again, the 5 weeks of no soccer seem forever. Even if my beloved Hansa doesn't live up to their expectations right now (17th...ugh), I still care about them, and can't wait to see them turn this ship around and out of the relegation spots. Sure, I might have my hopes up too high, but that doesn't mean these things won't happen. A fan goes with their team through thick and thin, and I wouldn't stop at anything to show my support to my team. I love this sport and I love my team, no matter how stormy it gets.

Anyway, it'll be another 5 long weeks. At least the Premier League and a few others around the world will still be playing. Oh, and of course the NHL.

Die Winterpause naehert sich, und als ein Fussballfan fuehlt es sich zu lange an. Die Bundesliga geht in den Winterschlaf und die Spieler werden ihre Zeit mit Familie geniessen, und danach in den sonnigen Sueden fahren, zum Trainingslager.

Ich bin dieser Sache gewoehnt, aber wenn es jedes Jahr wiederkomment, fuehlen sich die 5 Wochen wie eine Ewigkeit an. Auch wenn meine Hanseaten nicht ihren Erwartungen entsprechen (17. Platz....menno), Ich kuemmere mich noch sehr um ihnen, und kann es kaum erwarten, wenn sie das Ruder umreissen und aus den Abstiegsplaetzen klettern. Ich habe bestimmt meine Hoffnungen zu hoch gesetzt, aber das heisst nicht das diese Dinge nicht passieren. Ein Fan geht mit seinem Verein durch dick und duenn, und ich wuerde niemals aufhoeren, mein Team zu unterstuetzen. Ich liebe diesen Sport und ich liebe mein Verein, egal wie stuermisch es auch wird.

Jedenfalls wird es wieder 5 lange Wochen. Zumindest sind die Englische Premier League und andere Ligen weltweit noch am spielen. Oh, und auch die NHL.

Thursday, 24 November 2011

Dynamo Dresden excluded from German Cup

Yahoo! Sports blog - Dirty tackle - Dresden fans set Dortmund's toilets on fire

After the horrific incidents at the German Cup game between Western German powerhouse Borussia Dortmund and Eastern legendary club Dynamo Dresden, where Dynamo fans caused three game interruptions and repeatedly attacked police around the stadium, the German Soccer Association (DFB) banned Dresden from Cup competition next year, after a meeting held today in the Frankfurt main office.

I applaud this decision, but it also hurts a little, because the players were working hard for their fans, and this is what the fans repay them with. It doesn't seem fair from a fan's point of view, but then again, some people just can't learn to behave at a soccer game, so it seems.

Before the game started with a 15 minute delay, because the teams were stuck in traffic, the Dynamo fan section began a pyrotechnic showing, as they held flares in the air, clouding up the view of fans above them. I've been in a section before, where some guy would suddenly light a smoke bomb, and believe me, it's hard to deal with.

Even during the game, the fans from Dresden lit up and threw some flares onto the pitch at Signal-Iduna-Park in Dortmund, causing the match to be interrupted, as police tried to contain the fans.

Final stats: 17 injured, 15 arrests, 100,000 Euros in damage to the stadium, and Dresden eliminated, as Dortmund won 2-0.

Damn it, guys....

Eastern German fans have been a big problem for years now, and it almost unbearable to watch from afar. I was born in the East. I cheer on an Eastern German team (Hansa Rostock), and the fanatics of my team are known for being trouble makers. When you're on the outside looking in, you will still be misjudged as a fan of a team like that, as I told in my "Beer rain and broken glass" post.

Anyway, it was a good decision by the DFB. Time for fans to learn and behave, before they run their own team to the ground.

Monday, 21 November 2011

This blog has a new purpose/MLS

From now on, this blog is about my favourite sport in the whole wide world: soccer!

I'm such a soccer fan, and since I've been debating a lot about what the main focus of my blog should be, I've finally decided to talk about the beautiful game.

I've been a big soccer fan since I was six years old, when my uncle took me to a game of Hansa Rostock, my favourite German soccer team, and I've been a fan since. I play, I watch and I enjoy soccer as a part of my life. So yeah, here I am. Enjoy!
The MLS final happened on Sunday night, as the Los Angeles Galaxy with David Beckham, Landon Donovan and Robbie Keane took on the Houston Dynamo, who won two MLS titles since their birth in 2006. LA won 1-0, with Donovan scoring the lone goal of the game, giving them their 3rd title in their club history.

Congrats to the Galaxy on a great season. They've dominated for most of the season and won the Supporter's Shield (awarded to the team with the most points during the regular season) deservingly. In the end, it's no surprise they took the trophy.

I wasn't much into the MLS until this year, when the league expanded to 18 teams, with the Portland Timbers and the Vancouver Whitecaps, two northwestern teams, going into their first season. As the season progressed, I got more and more into the action and it was really a great season to watch. Great games, many goals, and spectacular action highlighted one of the best seasons in MLS in my opinion.

How about Hassili's goal against Seattle, tying it up for Vancouver? Or that wonderful Nagbe volley into the corner to bring Portland within one against Kansas City?

Here's Nagbe's beauty, which won him Goal of the Year:

I can't wait for next season. The Montreal Impact will join next season, becoming the third Canadian team in the MLS and I believe the fans and the players can't wait either. It's gonna be awesome!

Oh, and by the way: Go Timbers! RCTID! 

Monday, 14 November 2011

Coffee, beards and rock: Craig Benzine and Driftless Pony Club

The chances of finding musicians you've never heard before on YouTube is pretty high, considering how much variety is on there. I've had the same pleasure, starting with watching my favourite video blogger, Craig Benzine, aka Wheezy Waiter.

"Wheezy Waiter" is a name that includes Benzine's asthma problems and his former employment as a waiter. A pretty creative name, considering how many users on YouTube have strange sequences of numbers or a scramble of upper- and lower-case lettering. That's what separates the amateurs from the pros.

Anyway, Craig Benzine is one of the funniest people on the internet. His humor is original, silly and it catches you quickly. He started his YouTube channel with vlogs of his life as a waiter and would reflect on some of the situations that happened at his workplace. Since then, he evolved to become a full time YouTuber and earns his money through making original content multiple times a week. Yes, you can earn money through YouTube. A dream job for most internet enthusiasts, I think!

To let you see what he actually does, check this out!

Benzine also happens to be in a band called Driftless Pony Club, an indie rock band whose fanbase origins from the YouTube community, and those who really dig deep into the music vaults. They have released four studio albums, with their most recent one being "Buckminster", which was released this year. Their music is influenced by many bands, including The Pixies, Modest Mouse and even Weezer. With his friends Matt Weber (Guitar/Backup vocals), Sam Grant (Bass) and Nate Bartley (Drums), Benzine created many great songs that have reached out to younger generations through the internet. Here's a pretty witty one, called "Inspectors of Inspectors" from "Buckminster":

When you browse through Benzine's videos of the tours the band went on, you can see for a few seconds, how teens and young adults fill the coffee shops and bars they play at, screaming frantically to the camera Benzine uses to capture the emotions during the concert. It amazes me to see how much good Benzine and his band have produced over the years. I'd see teens and adults taking a marker and drawing a beard around their mouths and on their cheeks and wink at the camera for Benzine to put it on his videos.

It's just great to see that inspiration can come from anywhere. Not to mention great music! Craig, thanks for entertaining us with your humor and your band!

Monday, 7 November 2011

German soccer: Beer rain and broken glass

Time to write about my favourite sport: Soccer.

I have been a huge fan of FC Hansa Rostock, my favourite soccer team, since the age of six. I got introduced to soccer when my uncle took me to the last home game of the season 96/97, when Hansa played powerhouse FC Schalke 04. They lost 1-0 but I was so amazed at the action that went down on the pitch. And it was loud, and I loved it. My dad, who traveled with me and my uncle, got me a hat and a scarf before the game. I still have the same items at home. They traveled thousands of miles with me, to Hansa games all over Germany, and to my new home in Canada.

But since I moved to Canada, I've noticed how some clubs back in Germany, including my beloved Hansa, quickly attracted some of the rowdiest fans out there. Sure, you had to expect some sort of hooliganism sometime, but over time, the rebellion and trouble-making got worse. Whenever a big rivalry came along, so called "fans" threw rocks at each other, called names and chanted preposterous things at each other. Some even caused physical harm.

A few years ago, when a Hansa game was postponed due to bad weather and field conditions, the fans were travelling back home by train, and stopped halfway through in a city. To kill time, they decided to do some damage and smash police cars and set things on fire before heading back on the train. Hansa's management received a fine in the thousands and their fans were prohibited to travel with the team to the next few road games.

When I read the news on these events, I could only hold my head in shame. The beauty of soccer received a cut on the cheek that day. Sometimes, it makes me wonder if I should still be a fan of my team. It's silly to think that way, but when so-called "fans" of my team wreck cars and break windows, and are NOT stopping, then I start to feel really ashamed about being a fan. Our entire reputation as a fan base is damaged. That's how society works. Once somebody does something stupid, everyone else is affected.

You have to wonder why they do these things. It's simple: politics. Hooligans like to settle their political differences through violence, so it seems. Since Germany's reunification in 1990, the difference between east and west has increased. The east has struggled to get their economy going, while the west has been booming. A large population of the east moved to the west for a better life, with few west Germans heading east.

When it comes to soccer, hooligans of eastern teams love to do riots against fellow other eastern teams, or western teams. They accuse the west for being unfair and taking away opportunities and jobs, and criticize capitalism. Hooligans of western teams, on the other hand, point fingers at the east for still being communists. I don't exactly know why these riots happen, but I've seen so many interviews where fans accuse the others on political levels.

I've just had enough of "fans" bashing others for their political views. Politics doesn't belong in sports. They are two separate things. Stop smashing glass, and scream at the referee, or do other stuff that doesn't damage property or people's lives.

Less this: 

More this: 

Alles fuer den FCH! Keep my sport beautiful, not violent. 

Tuesday, 1 November 2011

God or Darwin?

Who is right?

That question has two huge sides to it. Did God create us just with a snap of a finger, or is Charles Darwin true with his theory of our planet's evolution through time? It's highly debatable, so let me throw my opinion into this big boiling stew.

I am a christian, but unlike most of them, I believe evolution has occurred. Why do I think this? Look into the history book of discoveries and you can find findings of human-like remains. You can browse through a very neat timeline of human evolution on the Discovery website:

Human Evolution Timeline -

A lot of people probably still debate about the remains, but I'm one of those people that believes a lot of the stuff told to society. Anthologists have modern technology to back up their findings and can put an age on the remains, which is remarkable for science. It shows how greatly advanced our technology has become and how easy it now is to prove how new findings fit into the timeline of evolution and change our history even more.

But what about God? What about him? Well, to me, he's a lot more like a life coach. A guide to when you need wisdom and strength after a bad happening in your life. When it comes to him creating the earth, I'm sorry, I don't buy it. I know this is a very touchy subject, but this is only my personal belief. Feel free to express yourself in the comments below.

To me, God is like a heavenly father who started it all and watched us evolve and grow. We just didn't notice until thousands of years ago. He's not a punishing kind of guy, but someone that cares about every person, and has knowledge for every situation. God doesn't represent creation to me, but a guide.

But! "Let there be light!" speaks a lot to me. The Big Bang theory (NOT the show, although I do love it) might only be a theory, but I believe it's true. What doesn't sound cool about a gigantic explosion, that creates the earth? Talk about starting life with a bang, and so the party rolled.

Two different views, two separate believes, two human minds debating about who is right and who's wrong. Why can't we all get along? Creationists, God is powerful enough to have created the big bang. It makes sense to me and to you. Evolutionists, the evidence is big enough to show the world that we were as a matter of fact running on knuckles, having more hairs on our body, enough to replace a winter coat. You got a good case.

I guess that makes me the awkward person in the middle. I don't mind, because I expressed my values here on my very own blog, and exercised my freedom of speech. Enough said.

To summarize: I believe humans must have come from somewhere, millions of years ago. I think that the Big Bang theory was God's "Let there be light." and the rest was evolution. Creation and Evolution in harmony. Can't go wrong with that.

Here's a treat for you guys to conclude this blog: Hit it, Fatboy Slim!