Friday, 1 January 2010


This will end up being a radically different year for me. After fifteen years in Germany.....I've packed to leave. Of all places on the face of the Earth, I will end up in Virginia. I will be car-less in less than two weeks.....for an entire year. And I will be in a foreign land of sorts.....with one out of every six in Arlington being a foreigner.

My tax relationship with the Germans will have finally ended. This twenty-odd thousand that they took through various means (income, sales, pension, TV, property, autobahn, and gas taxes)....comes to an end.

This absolute rigid way of life that Germans toss onto everyone.....will be a thing of the past for me. If I want to toss batteries into the regular garbage....I will. If I don't want to separate paper from plastic.....I won't. I won't consider the implications of using Du instead of Sie when discussing something with my neighbor.

I'll finally have real newspapers to read....or not read. I'll finally sign up for the Wall Street Journal and actually read first-class journalism.

I'll have dozens of news channels.....but probably only watch one.

I'll have talk radio but probably never listen to more than an hour a week.

I'll have access to Glenn Beck....but will it matter?

I'll be four hours by bus from New York City.....but will I actually take the risks of traveling to the City?

So 2010 is a bold year for me.

Animal Planet

Twenty years ago...if you had told me that a full-up 24-hour a day channel would exist....just on animals....I would laughed in your face. Being in Germany, I haven't had this opportunity to view the channel's strictly as I travel.

I've come to an addictive state of mind....turning on Animal Planet....whenever I've arrived at a hotel and want to relax. Then, I'll sit there for two or three hours.....watching some animal segment and questioning myself why I find this so fascinating.

It's like the show "Cops", except just with animals.

These guys actually make money and enjoy a pretty sizable crowd of viewers. To be honest, if I only had access to five channels....this would be one of them.

So sometime next week....I'll arrive in Arlington, sign up for cable, and hook up a TV. And you can guess the channel that I'll start with.