Zum Fußball nochmal

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Auslöser für diesen Blogpost ist ein missglückter Kommentarversuch beim Blogger Beve, der kurz seine Emotionen zum Thema Eintracht und DFB-Pokalsieg aufgeschrieben hatte. Blogger ist eigentlich eine Untertreibung, denn Beve ist unter anderem Chronist und schreibt auch für das Eintracht Frankfurt Museum. Die Beiträge auf seinem Blog sind nicht nur für Fußballfreunde eine Freude, und ich kann das so deutlich sagen, weil ich ja bis vor einiger Zeit mit dem Fußball selber noch nicht so viel anfangen konnte.

Zum Fußball kam ich via Simone, ich schrieb es vor vier Jahren hier auf, seinerzeit das Spiel Eintracht Frankfurter vs. Werder Bremen. Der Rest meiner Familie wohnt in Bremen, meine Nichten gehen öfter zu Werder ins Weserstadion. Ich selber habe dort mal 7 Jahre lang gewohnt, mittlerweile wohne ich zusammengerechnet seit 14 Jahren in Frankfurt. Dieses letzte Wochenende hat die Eintracht Frankfurt nach 30 Jahren endlich wieder den DFB-Pokal gewonnen, was für sich schon mal wunderbar ist und der Seele der Stadt sehr gut tut. Dann erfolgte das aber auch noch wohlverdient durch ein – im Vergleich zum Gegner – schönes Spiel mit viel Druck. Als i-Tüpfelchen erfolgte der Sieg auch noch gegen das Team von Bayern München, die erfolgsverwöhnt mit dieser neuen Situation als “nur 2. Platz” (was ja auch schon gut ist) überhaupt nicht zurechtkamen. Die Eintracht also mit ihren Fans in der Kurve im Stadion in Berlin komplett in weiß gehüllt und alle in Ekstase, weil irgendwie niemand mit dem Erfolg gerechnet hatte und das auch endlich wieder mal so ein Sieg war, der sich wie Weihnachten anfühlte. Ausgleich für Fußballdeutschland auf der einen Ebene, und Ausgleich für das Wohlbefinden der Eintracht auf einer anderen Ebene.  Continue reading “Zum Fußball nochmal”

Yes We Can

How do I explain this?

Those tables full of bananas should be interesting enough for a blog post (at least to me), but maybe I should start with my own little story:

Last year in March upon returning from Kenya, I realized I should cough up some mbeca and invest them into a good pair of running shoes – which I actually never had before, only “cross trainers”, which are like heavy weight shoes used for a firm stand while playing tennis (@ Impala Club when that membership fee was still affordable).
Shortly after their purchase, they quickly started to rot in the darkest corner of my closet, even though I took them with me to Frankfurt. Keeping your running shoes around is a perfect reminder that will nag on your conscience: Yeah, I should do more sports and well…oh…there’s something online I’ll still need to check out…oh…I am too tired today.

Some days ago, I reactivated my almost new running shoes and started jogging. I did this because a) it feels good, b) I am slightly overweight *cough* *cough* and c) I’d registered for the JPMorgan Chase Corporate Challenge 2008 in Frankfurt am Main, Germany – which is “an annual series of 3.5-mile (5.63 km) road footraces” taking place in 12 different cities worldwide.

Mind you, I may be good at other things, but I am bloody beginner when it comes to doing sports (ok, tennis back in the days and some beloved swimming from time to time), but it also started way back in school when I used to be the last one selected for teams. You know it yourself how mean kids may be – if you’re bad at sports, you’ll always be an outsider in some way, especially if your sports teacher is the same who teaches you mathematics. This teacher actually advised me after graduation not to study any scientific subject and, fortunately, I didnt listen to him. Obviously, there was still an open issue on this for me and I needed to prove it to myself that my teacher was wrong in 1996. A personal affair, if you will.

Now, running. Damn, it feels so good. The last time I had tried that was in Nairobi, trying to find a good route without potholes. But still, running never was THE sport for me, and this although it’s just very simple and you won’t even require proper shoes or other equipment. Just start, set yourself a target, see how it works, et voilá.

Ok, back to the JPMorgan Chase. When I came to Frankfurt in June 2007, I didn’t have time to register for the 2007 Chase and consequently had to witness it from the sidewalk. I did see a lot of other – overweight – ppl taking part, and – considering the relatively low 5,6km distance – realized that IF these ppl are taking part, I should also try it.

So here you go:


What you receive is a bag with a T-Shirt, your starting number, some free magazines on running and some glucose. Approx. 10% of your starting fee will be donated to a charity organisation and you get the chance to actually run together with the CEO of your company (cool guy, btw, he beat me by 4 minutes) and around 73.718 other ppl from 2.589 (more or less competing) companies.


RUN LOCAL WORK GLOBAL – our motto (sic!)….


and too….






73.719 runners are A LOT!


They actually had two starting points due the huge amounts of ppl. The Chase started at 7:30pm, but I only managed to cross the line at 8:20pm….

It really is a huge events, even with half-naked Brasilian ladies at the road side doing some samba for those who like it… some companies also seem to invest a lot of money into this event and equip their staff with shirts and other corporate things. Actually, it’s a win-win situation for everyone involved.


After around 40 minutes, I eventually managed to pass the finishing line. Not bad for a beginner, if I may say so. With such a huge amount of ppl on the road, it really isnt that easy to run with no obstacles in the way, but still, great fun, some sports and:


Lots of waste….


Lots of empty bottles…and….


BANANAS from here up to the end of the world.

Now you know where they are eaten.


My plan actually included providing you with a link to the fabulous Nokia Sportstracker website and my profile there, but do to the narrow roads in downtown Frankfurt, GPS reception was a bit distorted on my N95, so Sportstracker didn’t work. If you own a modern Nokia S60 phone and enjoy running, this little utility really adds value to your phone. Used it the other day to track my speed and distance.


After the Chase, we enjoyed some good beers and watched Turkey scoring a 2:1 against Switzerland. What you see in the pic above is the illuminated opera of Frankfurt. Liked the colours.

Ok, the JPMorgan Chase was great fun and I think I’ll be at it again next year – and in the meantime, I’ll have to train for October, because that’s when I’ll have a little 10km competition with members of my extended family. So yes, if you want it, you can do it.

n.b.: other positive side-effects of a regular running habit: you get to sweat much less and/or start sweating at a much later point while walking around under the sunshine. In other words, this whole ecosystem inside my body has improved and will certainly continue to improve. For a non-sportive person like me, this improvement is the biggest advantage.

the grave


Moi International Sports Centre – what a grave.

(a) Swimming costs 100/= Kshs for adults, 50/= for Kids.
Baptism 50/=, Photo sessions 1.000/= and Video sessions 5.000/=.

(b) What you see in front of the picture is the overgrown parking lot of the stadium. The lamps all lack their bulbs and the whole area behind the stadium resembles a small (bird) sanctuary – we even saw a guinea hen.

(c) With just a little bit of maintenance, this place could really look beautiful as the facilities still look very promising and were def. made to last longer.


Who is in charge of this place?

Koigi’s analogies (verdict: comprehensive)

“Recently, the Kenya Football Federation kicked out our national team, Harambee Stars, out of the Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani, and invited the better-known Cameroon’s Indomitable Lions to practise at Kenya’s best stadium.

Instead, the national team was taken to Ruaraka, a field not as good as Kasarani. It mattered little that at the time, Harambee Stars was preparing for a match with Eritrea. In the end, Kenya lost to a team that had been dismissed as minnows.”

Koigi’s recent comment on the Mzungu/Obama/adoring-problem (Our people have a long history of self-hatred”) …now, although I am not willing or able to dive deeper into this matter and although I don’t want to openly wonder about his continued efforts to entertain readers with his views on various matters (seems to me he has an opinion on almost anything – anyone remember JJ?), I find it quite entertaining how he puts in this vivid example from the Fussballwelt.

(note to myself: learn the names of your local football/soccer team and be prepared to talk about this subject more often to enhance business opportunities in Kenya :-)

How to confuse Gamaans…

True worrrshippaas of Kikuyumoja’s Realm might remember this entry, where I highlighted that Kenya and Germany do in fact share similar national flags.
Upon opening my snail mail box this morning, I found the following “How-to-confuse-Gamaans” instruction – carefully prepared by my dearest fan Mbuzimoja:


Kiptoo – this sure is something for Mtandao.de, sindiyo?


Today was a good day.

I was stuck in an unusual traffic jam (hey, this place is quite rural) which made me miss out watching the opening game to the WorldCup but I managed to follow the game on the radio. You know, Juergen Klinsmann (coach of the German team) came in as a blessing way back in 1994 as it helped me to explain the proper pronunciation of my first name to local wanainchii [Jooo-ghan? Yiiiuuurrrgen]. Let’s see how far they’ll make it this time – I understand the Gaamaaan team still needs some improvement on defence, but compared to the 2002 team, I still think there’s some improvement. Or as Klinsmann put it: “Eminem puts it right…if you had one shot, or one opportunity….would you capture it or just let it slip?”. But then – I’m not such a Mzalendo to support the German team just because we share the same passport. What I’d like to see is a) good football with lots of emotions, fair play and action as well as b) Germany being a good, friendly, accomodating host to the games and it’s visitors. As for the rest: I am with this fellow blogger

Today was a good day because I eventually figured out what kind of notebook computer I shall save my money on. Purchase is planed for July/August this year, but still, knowing that there are a lot of interesting notebook models out there on the market, I needed to spend some time online searching for the perfect deal PLUS visiting shops and putting my hands on those machines.
The internet reveals a lot of information and customer blabla but it doesn’t give you the feeling, the actual touch, the haptic which is needed if you’re seriously buying a notebook. Ok, maybe if you go for those (older) IBM Thinkpads you’ll never need to worry about things like quality or the keyboard but I’ll won’t be able to afford those ones (sorry Steve), and the new Lenovo N100 series hasn’t yet convinced me. Also, for the same reason I could never settle for a DELL notebook as there’s no chance to actually see them in action (here in Germany) except for what they show online. I wonder how u decided for one nevertheless, Mzeecedric?

So I drove to this electronics supermarket and enjoyed the time ALONE in the shop – knowing that about 98% of the population would be spending the evening at home, heating their jiko for some nyama choma and preparing for the games…
After about one hour of a very detailed and fussy examination of the various notebook models they had on display (removing the battery, turning the notebooks up and down, checking the display and hinges, overall quality, keyboard + size of keys, etc.), the supermarket’s security guy approached me and told me NOT to dismantle anything but instead that I should be asking those (bored) salespersons around who’d be willing to assist me… (MEDIA MARKT, are you listening? Hello? I am was a potential customer…pffffff).

So the point is: I eventually settled for this machine – an ACER Aspire 5672 WLMi with the following specs:

  • Intel Core Duo T2300 (1.66 GHz, 667 MHz FSB, 2MB L2 cache)
  • 15.4″ WXGA CrystalBrite LCD with 16ms refresh rate
  • ATI Mobility Radeon X1400 128MB
  • 100GB 5400 RPM SATA hard drive
  • Slot-Load DVD super multi drive
  • 1GB DDR2 dual channel memory (@ 667 MHz!!)
  • 802.11 a/b/g wireless with singalup high efficiency antenna
  • Bluetooth 2.0+EDR
  • ExpressCard slot
  • 1,3MPx webcam
  • VGA + DVI-I out
  • 5 in 1 reader
  • decent keyboard (very important)
  • ~ 3kgs, battery runtime of ~2-3hrs

Other interesting models included in my search (so far) where: Acer Aspire 5652, Asus A6J/V series, Fujitsu-Siemens Pi 1536, HP nx6110, nx6230, nx8220, HP Pavillion dv5165, Samsung x20 series, Toshiba M50 series and the Lenovo N100 series.

The advantage with the 5762 is that it includes Bluetooth and a webcam (which can be turned 220° so you can actually take a video of the environment!) among a variety of interfaces that are normally only offered on more expensive notebooks.
However, customers of this relatively new model reported a loud dvd drive + weak battery run time but I think that’s only once you use the pre-installed WinXP with all those redundant little “extra tools” that will run in the background and take up RAM + battery power. Hence my only concern is the slot-in DVD drive which is too prone to dust but I’m sure it can be cleaned (while in Nairobi, I was desperately searching for Isopropyl alcohol which was said to be available – normally – but “just not this time”. Well, surgeon’s alcohol also works if you can live with that smell….).

Well, today was a good day because I not only managed to free my brain off this burning desire to settle on a certain notebook (you don’t have to be a Gadgetfreak to understand that feeling – just think of shoes and handbags and you might get the picture :-), but I also eventually realized that I am somehow stupid.


You know, one of my criteria aka “must haves” on a notebook (hey, coughing up 1.300,- EUR requires some wise decisions) included a big ENTER key. The last time I bought a notebook was in 1999 – and back then I just bought it (also an ACER, btw) because of that big ENTER key. Ok – that was one of the reasons…
So today I realized that – contrary to what is visible on that international product image from ACER – the German QWERTZ layout of the keyboard actually includes such a big ENTER key – YEAH! Which goes to show once again that the information online isn’t accurate enough and still requires some detailed inspections in shops.

Aterere…now I’ve made up my mind on this machine and unless YOU come up with another interesting, affordable (max 1.300,- EUR) alternative/suggestion, I’ll stick to this machine and make it become my main computer in future.

Btw, this is the sticker I had planned for the back cover. Customization – here you go!
Enjoy :-)
(my 5 minutes draft…)

AOB (edit): TOGO, are you N U T S??? There’s this once-every-4-years-chance to play for your country and all these guys can do is talk about money….what a shame!