The Wisdom They Give

Credit: Patrick Heagney

Anarchic and Loud

They are anarchic, loud, and insist on their rights. What we can learn from oldish ladies like me and old ladies in general.

If you look at the clichéd images in media, old women sit on park benches. Maybe they feed pigeons — or grandchildren. Or they are beautiful and perfectly cared for, you know, artificial. Jane Fonda. She looks great but I’d like to have the budget she spent on all sorts of surgical procedures. Whoever worked on her, did a pretty good job. Because trust me, you can exercise until the cows come home, do facial yoga and…


The more languages you speak, the better you’ll be in your native tongue

Photo: Imansyah Muhamad Puera for Unsplash

Why there’s something to be said for learning Latin

“English grammar is so complex and confusing for the one very simple reason that its rules and terminology are based on Latin — a language with which it has precious little in common. In Latin, to take one example, it is not possible to split an infinitive. So in English, the early authorities decided, it should not be possible to split an infinitive either. But there is no reason why we shouldn’t, any more than we should forsake instant coffee and air travel because they weren’t available to the Romans. Making English grammar conform to Latin rules is like asking…


It’s easy: just stop buying so much stuff

Photo by Jeff Sheldon on Unsplash

Textiles consume massive amounts of resources in their production. At the same time, textile waste is increasing. Correct recycling is crucial. Otherwise — just forget it. Don’t bother. Dump everything into the trash and set it on fire. Make it quick. Might as well if you’re not willing to do something now. And consistently. And anybody who says it doesn’t pay to recycle, not worth the effort, is full of shit and just stupid lazy. It does pay and especially with discarded clothes — it helps really really poor people who desperately need any help they can get. …


The tale of Elisabeth of Austria and her caprices, her tragedies, her life

Wiki Commons — Empress Elisabeth of Austria by Franz Xaver Winterhalter

What Princess Diana is to the Brits, Empress Elisabeth of Austria is to Austrians and Germans alike. Elisabeth was Princess Elisabeth of Bavaria, a German province before she became Her Imperial Highness, Empress of the Austro-Hungarian Empire.

During the Christmas holidays, there’s a series of camp kitsch movies from the 1950s on repeat it seems, with a sweet and pretty Romy Schneider portraying Elisabeth in the super sugar-coated way one did in 1955. It is a portrayal of the empire, the monarchy, the empress that some Austrians to an extent embrace to this day. Austrians aren’t great at owning the…


The unusual history of the place where one buys newspapers, smokes, and lottery tickets in Austria

WikiCommons — Image of the iconic sign each tobacco shop has in Austria

The name Tabak Trafik comes from a melting pot of cultures who were famous for shipping trade and smoking: Arabic > tafriq, distribute; Italian > traffico, trade. A Tabak Trafik is iconic here and can be found throughout the country — it’s a retail outlet for tobacco products, the name Tabak Trafik is only used in Austria.

A sustainable livelihood for the disabled dating back over 200 years

The state awards these stores according to social criteria: invalids, handicapped people, or in some cases, they may be handed down to close relatives. …


Nonsense. You’re only saying that because no one ever has.

Photo by Micaela Parente on Unsplash

Buttercup: We’ll never survive.

Westley: Nonsense. You’re only saying that because no one ever has ~ The Princess Bride

Welcome to why we survive > things that make us happy

The weather the entire week definitely played a role in the happiness sector. Beautiful Southern Cali Weather in Austria must be duly recognized and noted: clear blue the skies, breezy and warm during the day, cool and twinkling stars against the ink-black night. Brilliant.

I’m going for a running streak, as yet unspecified but certainly will not match Eddie Gieda who has been at it for 500 days now. Around the world. In honor of his wife. She died. …


An inspiration for old ladies, an inspiration for all ladies

Image by author

The occasion: the return of the indestructible killer person in Halloween Kills with Jamie Lee Curtis reviving her role as horror cinema’s original Final Girl, now Final Grandmother and she just received a lifetime achievement award at the 2021 Venice Film Festival also known as the Biennale. Her acceptance speech was spoken in Italian.

Italian Cinema has always honoured and heralded the genre that gave me my career, so I couldn’t be more proud and happy to accept this award from the Venice International Film Festival on behalf of Laurie and all the courageous heroines of the world who stand…


The Entrepreneur from Vienna: Josef Dietrich von Dietrichsberg

Horses and Carriage via Pixabay, copyright-free

The transport business made the entrepreneur a millionaire. The proverbial rags to riches tale. Only it happened — of all unlikely places — in Europe. In Austria. Josef’s father was a coachman, guiding coaches over rutted country roads. Josef Dietrich, later in life, a millionaire many times over, left a barely-known legacy as an art collector and theater fanatic. I certainly never heard of him until recently. Unfortunately, his sole heir, his grandson, was a total wastrel. Here’s a tiny part of their stories — in broad strokes. Everyone’s life is worth many nights around the campfire, listening. That’s how…


40 years after they retired, the once-perfect Swedish pop band is back

Photo by Jakob Owens on Unsplash, Graphics by author

Revivals are overrated

The Swedish pop group Abba returned yesterday evening with a worldwide streaming event. “The winner takes it all, the loser has to fall”. For almost 40 years, the perfect pop group was not available for weddings, deaths, divorce proceedings, and the course of mild depression. At least not live. It wasn’t really live this time either.

Younger contemporaries and older cinema-goers may remember terrible films Mamma Mia! and Mamma Mia! Here We go Again, which brought Abba back into the collective short-term memories ensuring lasting devastation of the cinema, DVD, and streaming landscape. …


Freedom and self-reliance from the late 19th century onward

Hulton Archive/ Getty Images / Copyright free

Let me take you back in history to the beginnings of the common bike. Because it played a pretty big role in women's independence, mobility, and style. The little old bicycle — a big factor in the suffragette movement, in emancipation, mobility — propelling women forward to greater independence.

The bicycle will inspire women with more courage, self-respect, and self-reliance and make the next generation more vigorous of mind and of body ~ Susan B. Anthony

The bicycle itself was invented in 1817 by a German Baron named Carl Freiherr von Drais. Die Laufmachine or running machine. You had to…

Veronika Kaufmann

Now, the most important thing is, we work as a team. That means you do everything I tell you.

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