The delicate art of asking for free crap

Tweet You may be surprised to hear that travel writing has a seedy underside. Quite often, almost routinely in fact (when you’re not working for Lonely Planet), travel writers are given a free room, meal or service, with an accompanying wink, on the condition that they compose glowing praise for…

The smell of cat pee in the morning

Tweet When I first stepped into my current apartment last August with the rental agent, two things struck me immediately; first, it was by far the least decrepit place she’d shown me and second the odor of cat piss was so overwhelming that I had to steady myself against a…

Goodbye ENPoGiR, hello Killing Batteries – A blog re-launch

Tweet The good people at BootsnAll, this blog’s host, took pity on the dull and generic appearance of ‘Every Notable Patch of Grass in Romania’ and offered to spruce it up for me on the condition that I dismantle my shrine to Chris and stop pestering his mother about his…

The long, agonizing death of a Dell notebook

Tweet I knew this day was coming.  My little Dell Latitude 200 that has been with me through three years of untold rain, snow, oppressive heat, flights, buses, boats, trains and meandering hikes through large, confusing cities in 38 countries is showing its age.  After 25 or so Windows updates,…

The heat is on – way on

Tweet The summer cook off calibre heat has finally reached Iasi.  Who wants some well-done travel writer?  White meat?  I’m Norwegian, that’s all I got.  The breasts are OK, but if you want a real treat go for the rump. We’ve had a full week of this heat now.  My…

Romanian idiosyncrasies

Tweet I’ve been meaning to start a list like this for a while now.  Each country has it’s own little oddities that aren’t necessarily going to thrill anthropologists, but are still intriguing. Here’s the start of a ongoing collection of my favourites from Romania: Mobile (cell phone) ‘beeps’ – Even…

Not my problem

Tweet ‘Not my problem’.  Over the past year, I’ve slowly come to realize that this is the Romanian mantra, seemingly uttered with a frequency that most people reserve for ‘how are you?’ and in some cases ‘dude, I’m so wasted’.  This is particularly true with the over-40 Romanian age group,…

Budapest restaurant scam – Let’s be careful out there

Tweet Hey, this is just a friendly public service announcement for you travelers to stay cognizant of some of the older scams that are still alive and well all over Europe. A friend of mine was just burned by the old menu switcheroo scam in Budapest last week, an art…

What Color Is Your Jockstrap?

Tweet Alert the international press!  My long awaited second appearance in book print has finally occurred with the release of What Color Is Your Jockstrap?, the latest in a series of travel humour anthologies by tireless editor and poker socialite Jen Leo. This was the first Leo venture to allow submissions…

Low spot

Tweet I’m suffering on several fronts at the moment.  After the unremitting exhaustion, panic and exhilaration of my final three weeks on the LP write-up, the past two weeks have been a bit of a bummer.  I’ve been slowly poking at two non-travel articles on Sarajevo and Bratislava for Global…

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