Showing posts from 2014

An amazing bunch of friends

I just got back to Italy, for the first time I'll be working from "home", meaning, this time, my parent's home!
I am quite excited about this opportunity. I want to see how it feel to sit next to my father while he translate and I work. I know, by the way, that luckily it will last only 1 week... because more... hey! It's still my parent's place, I can't stand stay in the same place for so long!
But it's not this I was going to write about. I was on the bus, taking me from the airport to the train station, and I was looking outside, remembering other times I went back on the same bus and some melancholy struck. And when melancholy strikes, you never know where your mind will go!
And mine started thinking about my childhood friends... those that were really friends, not for just a season, but for long years, the same friends that you still think about in rainy nights... and when you meet everything starts right after from it stops when you left. I am a…

Two words on: Ferguson and United States of America - Ferguson (part I)

Here I come, writing my second dangerous post.
So, I tried to slip away from this subject and indeed, in the past months, I've talked about Ferguson only once, in a brief discussion with my father, that lead to nothing.
But the truth is that the situation in Ferguson is not improving, the situation in the USA neither and that a lot of information has been thrown against the viewer and a lot of different opinions have arisen.
I try to stay away from opinions, as somebody may have noticed, when I write or talk officially. I love opinions when I speak and discuss with somebody, as long as it's agreed that they are opinions (personal or common).
Anyway, in the case of Ferguson what struck me is not the opinions, but the simplest facts.
Here they are: a 18 years old man has been killed on the 9th of Augustthe man was shot 6 times by a police officerthe man was unarmedthe shooting occurred at mid-day, on a open streetthe police officer was on patrol alone I know that there are a lot…

Buachaill on Eirne, or how I fell in love with Ireland again

I was working today, and chatting with a colleague about work, at one point (we did not know each other) I asked her where she was coming from and it turn out it's Ireland.
So, lets remember about old times and... which was that song? I searched my music library for Clannad and... here it is!

But the colleague point me out to another version from Corrs

And I was lost... from there it has been a long afternoon of listening to the same song in so many different shades (this is the list), and then Mo Ghile Mear...

and then  Oro Se do Bheatha 'Bhaile

and so down to Sinead and Tell me Ma

But to this there is no end...So I'll leave you with a good mention:

My long lost passion

I just thought that I have never posted a photo of my beloved motorbike... when I had one. And the sad truth is that I have almost no photos... so sad. But here it is, with a much younger me... and a dead Santa...

Interstellar: what goes and what goesn't... ehm... doesn't go! [part I]

So, I watched the movie, enjoyed it (you should already know, by now, having read this) and I read about it on I 400 Calci (in Italian, but simply wonderful site on movies).

I want to (and will) go to watch it a second time (this time I'll chose a not Imax theatre, a really nice one: The Movie, in AMS), as a lot of things I've lost (thank you damn Texan accent!) and some I've probably already forgot.

But having read about the movie and talked with friends about it, I fell that I want to line down the things that didn't worked so well, weren't so clear or simply... I didn't appreciated much. And also what, on the contrary, was working. All of that... by my own opinion, obviously!

So, from now on is SPOILER ALERT!!

1. We are at some point in the future, not too much... but where the hell all of the mobile phones have gone?
1.1 and what about Google Maps (or any other such service)? Do you really need paper maps to look for NASA? Really? It's '95 again?


Interstellar or... f**k it, Nolan... you got me! Science it's not credible enough, better study MAGIC!

I just got back from watching Interstellar.
No other way to put it. I LOVED it!
Let me be clear: there are bullshits around the whole movie and it's far from a perfect one. But I went out of the theatre and could just think: I just saw the new "2001 - A space Odissey".
Of course I can be wrong... or better... I am sure I am wrong. But I really enjoyed this movie. Again, with all the stupid problems it presents (why, tell me, oh! Why, they cannot build better ways to protect themselves from... dust?!?!? Or why they are still using petrol for cars? And Google Maps!?? Where Google Maps has gone, by God!!).
So, go out there in the wild and watch it! Is a wonderful way to spend 3 hours of your life!
Unless... unless you think that building a fucking Ark that fly through space (and, most importantly, leave the gravitational pit of Earth from the SURFACE) is less probable and believable then rupturing Space-Time continuum!
Yes... It's so strange for me to think about that …

Two words on: buy a new mobile phone (Jolla)

It has happened.
After 3 years and some months, my wonderful, gorgeous, amazing Nokia N9 told me: "I am dying, I am slowly dying... forgive me!"
I will, I will forgive you, my sorrowful friend... but I will never forget you!
After years of buying a new phone every 12 months more or less (HTC Magic, HTC Wildfire, Sony Ericsson Xperia X10), the Nokia N9 was the first smart phone I really enjoyed, appreciated and kept with me for 3 years. With all of its defects (few apps, thanks to Microsoft and its slowly killing of Nokia and quite immediate extermination of Meego, slow processor compared to newer devices, and something more) and its more numerous merits (it's an amazing phone).
But now the time to abandon it and replacing it come quickly... one day it didn't turn up... and it was gone. I could still use its basics functions because I installed Sailfish OS on it almost 6 months ago, but it was clear that I should have reset the Meego installation from scrap... for me…

Amsterdam: 1 year (plus 1 day)

AMSTERDAAAAM AMSTERDAAAMMM... ce ne andiamo tutti insieme tutti insieme ad Amsterdam!

One year has passed. I will not say that it has been quick. It has been, on the contrary, full of long days and long nights. Not most of them, but a lot of them. It has been a quick change in life that I was not expecting to do, and that I didn't wanted to do. But it has happened. The change, actually, begun some time before, but the 22nd of October has been the start of My Life, part 3.0 (or whatever other number, I changed life so many time that I don't know at which version of myself I am at now). After a month of pure desperation (1 week, actually, than thanks to some amazing friends, things started getting better) I was ready to arrive in a complete new city, with almost no friends (one, just one friend) and no knowledge of the language and the people, ready to start again from the ashes. Ashes of what? Of myself. Again and again. Funny thing, I am really good a that (there is a wonderf…

Two words on: diets

Since I was a kid I have always been thin. But real thin. Then I reached the "teens", the twenties... and kept on being thin. I have been trying to get to 60 kg (I am 1.70 m, with a lot of hope... meaning, I am more 1.68/1.69) because I was playing football (the European kind of it) and I was lighter than a leaf. Finally at 24 (thanks to the military... !!) I reached 61 kg and my life changed for... about 5 months. Then I comeback to training and down again to 58 kg.
To keep it short, at one point, around my 30ies, I reached 62 kg and stayed there, then 63, 64, 65... and in the last 2 years I have been around 67/68 kg. I bit too much, if I have to say, but still. Then last August I've been on holidays for 3 weeks, 3 whole weeks in Italy, 10 days at my parent's, 10 days at a friend's house... a Chef friend's house... and his restaurant.
Again, to keep it short. Last day of holidays, I am at my parent's house and we are eating lunch (you know? Mamma's …

Two words on: buying a new computer

I've got some friends who uses computers... mmm... maybe it's a fair assumption to think that it's all of my friends.
So, when you are in dare need of changing your ageing laptop and you don't want to pay too much (I know some of you are fanboys of Apple... ) you can try this out:
I am not a HUGE fan of Google... I am a fair fan of them. But These are pretty laptop, not expensive, but still powerful enough for your everyday use. And they have Linux installed on them, so extra security, extra speed and extra awesomeness!
I would, of course, prefer you to buy a full Linux laptop from System76 or ZaReason, but I know it's not so easy, so I will be more than happy if you go with a Chromebook (and you will be too). Or maybe you can do as I did and buy a Sputnik!
Remember just one thing, these (the Chromebooks) are not power machines. If you want to play to the last and all incredibly real life like game, better you buy a desktop (and install Linux on it... …


After various years of having holidays in strange periods (at least strange for Italians) I am finally on holiday during summer.

Middle of August is the starting date, and first week of September will be the end. It's quite exciting. Everybody is on holiday in Italy in the summer months, and August is the king of holidays. Shops could be closed, restaurants could be closed. Because being Italy a place where people from other countries would never spend their holidays, the best time of the year for a commercial activity to closed due to holidays is indeed summer, isn't it?
Yes, it is.
But I am not here to talk about the commercial wisdom of Italians. I am here because what was supposed to be my "in fieri" date just dumped me and I am supposed to wait at least 1 hour more before I can go home. So I have to spend some time. I am outside of a restaurant, on a wooden chair with cushions, crickets are playing their music, the air is a bit chilly (it has been a atypical sum…

Time and the Past

Relaxing in Italy after almost an year passed, still it is not easy.
The past is still hunting back, fighting to hold its position in my memory and winning it easily. No one, no one thing, no one thought can send away memories, sensations and feelings that have been part of me for so long.
Life is easy. Life changes every day, every moment and any moment is a different one, a different way of facing the sun, feeling the rain on the skin and looking at the moon's shadows. Forgetting is a slow descent in oblivion that never ends, because memories come back, pieces of life past resurface and float in the oceans of everyday happenings. Like the old fisherman who catches only his dreams, memories spring out of the water with a flash of droplets and splash back again in the dark water.
Never again will be? Or never again will I forget? Time come and go, seconds went by and became hours, became days and months that separate different experiences and nothing changes, nothing move on, not…

Two words on: Israel and Palestine (for kind people only)

I tried to avoid this, because this argument is so polarizing that everybody gets hurt (on the ground, sadly, and also in the discussion).
But it has been so long that the line has been crossed that I can't stay silent any more.
The real line, of course, has been crossed some years ago and a lot of times by a lot of different people, but what I want to think about is the "now", July 2014, and the line has been crossed when it has been decided to wage war. Shelling a populated area. That is the line. As far as today there are some 1000 deaths, 99% on the Palestine side and I believe 90% of them civilians. So: 900 "innocent" persons today are not living any more. Schools have been hit, hospitals have been hit, houses have been hit.
All of this makes me sad, really sad, because again and again we, as a Species, show that we are not far away from the Species around us, which solve their problems fighting.
I want to add my 2 cents on this argument. I'll try to …

Inches are all around us

Yes... they are there and those inches, summed up, will make the difference between losing and winning, between life and death.
Ok, I admit it, I watched Any Given Sunday and Al Pacino got the best out of me. And still I spend the most part of my every day missing the opportunities to catch those inches.
I know theory and I know how to apply it. Never do it, but I know everything.
That make me an idiot, and I am glad that it's been years that I know I am. Unfortunately I am not willing, yet, to change too much. It seems I enjoy going on being an idiot. I've got not much to say about it. I am... really am.
I will get better, probably, I will shave my beard one day and find a more clever version of myself below it. Time is quite running out, but I'll do.
So, what's the point of all of this? Tonight I'll cut my beard!

Amsterdam: 8 months and counting

And... yes!
I am settled. Nice apartment, in a nice neighbourhood, a job to pay the bills and look at the future in a little less scared way (everybody knows, I've got the scared eyes of a deer...) and life is going on as it should.
Of course, life is going on as it should because I have no steering ability at all... but I am used to it. It's more or less 8 years, since I left Italy, that I have no power on my destiny. Every time I fight for something, I end up losing it. It's a bit unsettling, I have to say, but "Hey, what the f**k!" it's a phrase I repeated so much in my head that now it's simply another of my inner jokes.
As far as trying to shape my future, I am now restrained to the choice of my socks and to hoping to manage to maybe get back to a less-horrible shade of fitness. And I am taking the helm of it in these days... I started training for almost 2 hours every Monday and Tuesday (my off days). Today should be the 3rd day... and it menaces r…

Learning the Manjaro way - 2 First Steps

Ok, now, with some luck if you are a complete newbie to the Linux world, you have installed Manjaro on your computer.
First thing to know. You have a lot of programs/application already installed on your system (unless you've done a barebone installation, but I didn't explained to you how to do that... so I presume you have a default installation). I will also presume that you are using KDE as a Desktop Environment (DE, the look and feel of your desktop, so to say).
So if you click on your Manjaro icon (a green M) on bottom left (or top left... or wherever you find it. It's the icon that shows the menu for everything that is installed on the system. Programs are divided into categories, so if you are looking for a music player you can search it under Multimedia, if you look for the word processor, look in Office and so on. Some programs already installed? - LibreOffice (a office suite with word processor, spreadsheet and so on) - DigiKam (to manage import of photos from a…

Learning the Manjaro way - 1 Installation

So, I am so happy about my switch from Ubuntu to Manjaro that I want to share the experience.
But first, first a big and huge THANKS to Ubuntu. I discovered Linux 20 years ago but it wasn't until Ubuntu 8.04 that I really have been able to use it constantly on my PCs. It was, of course, 2008 and for 5 years I simply loved it. Now that I think about it... it's the same years span as... what the f...!! Well... never mind.
So, a HUGE thanks, Ubuntu still remains a great distro, but I am too of a chaos maker to keep it. And it was time to change, as I said. Last words, if you are a complete stranger to the Linux world, try Ubuntu (maybe not the last distro, but the previous one or the LTS), or maybe Mint.
Now, Manjaro. What's Manjaro? Manjaro comes from Arch Linux. Arch Linux is for bad asses. You want to learn Linux? Or you already know it? Go with Arch. Manjaro tries to have the same level of configuration, speed, optimization as Arch, but gives you some help in the process…

Learning the Manjaro way

Today has happened.
Today I decided to wipe everything from my laptop (remember, it's a Dell Xps 13 with Linux on-board) and say goodbye to Ubuntu (Kubuntu flavour) and say HALLO to Manjaro as my main OS.
It has been a difficult choice? No. I upgraded from Kubuntu 13.10 to 14.04 and got a Kernel Panic (first EVER kernel panic in Linux for me...). How disappointed was I? Too much. There is NO way that a distribution should have a kernel panic in a production product (nice allitteration).
So, I downloaded Manjaro KDE edition and now here I am... It took me a bit to have the same feel and look as in my old desktop... but it seems to be blazing fast. I already tried Manjaro with LXDE or XFCE, I don't remember... and that was INCREDIBLY fast!
But I love my KDE and I am not yet ready to part from it... so... Manjaro here I am!
Octopi (the package management application) is a looong way behind Software Center, that is true, but hey, I am a power linux user or not?!? Answer is: not. B…

Amsterdam: 3 months, 3 weeks and 5 days (or something similar...)

Double post today, I am in that mood!
Ok, so some real updates on the situation here. It's been 4 months that I am here and I have an idea of how things are going on, now. The weather is not good, I have to say. There are a lot of days that evolves like this:  - morning sun  - midday cloudy  - afternoon rain  - evening heavy rain for 1 hour  - night recovering to give a wonderful morning 
 It is not that bad, the only problem is that in the morning you work, but you can enjoy a nice ride to the workplace, that's for sure. Than in the afternoon you are still working. And just 1 hour before leaving the skies open and rains cats and dogs and you are scared that going home will be as wet as Venice. Than you want to go out to take a beer with some friends, at the bar your trousers are as comfortable as sitting with a ball under your ass (one of those balls...). Than it's time to go home, the warm and cozy house of yours, so it doesn't matter if it's raining, snowing o…

Springtime again

Yes, I know that it's only mid February, that we are in for some cold storms, rain, snow and whatsoever. But this morning, as I woke up around 12 (yes... technically it's still morning!) there were patches of clear skies up above and the sun was lighting up Amsterdam. I could not believe it! After fifteen minutes to re-discover where I was and who I was I managed to look out of the window and one of the trees in front of the house had sprouts of flowers and young leaves. It's SPRINGTIME!! I am sorry for the tree... he will have some problems in the next weeks, but I know he is strong and will survive. Took the bike, ride along the city, through a park and to a pancake bar... to have a nice breakfast with pancakes and scrambled eggs... or better, a croissant. Bit of a delusion, I found one of the few waitress who doesn't understand English... or maybe I was still too sleepy to explain myself well. So... springtime. A time of growth, recovering, warm days and still chil…

Father Time finally catch up

Yep, that's all folks!No, I'm being a bit too much drastic, probably. I am just a bit angry that when I was finally starting gearing up with the intensity of sport activity... CRACK! I pulled (and really hope not teared) my hamstring. It was coming, I knew it was coming... and did too few to avoid it. I almost injured myself in the same place before Christmas, but I stop playing for almost a month, than I begun training a bit, going jogging almost everyday. But Sunday I felt it... and tonight had not the time and will to warm up properly. And so... in front of me probably a month or more(even if I still hope less, but it's not probable) of resting and watching my teammates play...I hope they win... even without me... SIGH!

Organizing... and life changers...

Getting organized for a new life can take some time. I, for example, need between a month to a year to do the easiest things. Today I downloaded the application to check my trains timetable. Not a moment too soon! I still haven't got a bank account, a internet connected phone contract and some more things that probably I should have got by now. They will come in good time.To go to work I spend at least 35 minutes per leg in a train. At most 47. I remember when I left Milan just because I wouldn't stand commuting for almost 2 hours a day to get to work. Now I'm doing 1 hour and a half and I'd remain in Amsterdam forever. It is true that the trip is on a train through fair country side and canals.Life make we change. When we stop to change... it's time to die.


Running in a dream

I am running in a 10.000 meters competition. I am 5th or 6th, but still there are some kilometres to do and the lead is not so far ahead. The guy next to me start climbing positions, I keep calm and rest a bit more. Then only 4 laps are to be done, I begin my attack, I start running more, reach the 4th, reach the 3rd, reach the 2nd and 2 laps to go. I start to launch the last lap, pass the 2nd and in the hunt for the lead. I reach him, it's the guy who was with me at the beginning, accelerate, he tries to respond and launches the final rush. For a moment I fear my legs will not respond, the fear rises in my heart... but I resist, after 2 or 3 seconds I launch my final rush and here I go, to the final hundred metres... The other guy cannot resist, I sense that his confidence has gone and with it his last strength. I WIN!
Ok... this is some kind of idiocy, but... have you ever been in a dream where you have to run and your legs just... don't go? You have no strength, they stay …