Archive for January, 2007

21 & over

What’s the deal with bars in Graz? Do they require an age limit for admittance? Recently, some young folks I know were prohibited from entering clubs because they were under 21 (but over 18). The BBC by the University and Cuba at St. Peter, to be exact.

Seems the rule is arbitrary, since many of the regulars are under 21.

Anybody knows what gives?

An American Cook

The following is, more or less, the latest article I’ve written for the Santa Fe New Mexican newspaper, which runs today on the food page.

An American Cook in Europe
for the Santa Fe New Mexican
by Christopher J. Kolon

Years ago I had the opportunity to take a position as Chef Entremetier at a resort in Switzerland. What an eye-opener that was for this young, dreamy American chef.

I was forced to put aside my fantasies…

Grazer Quiz: Light Sword

Next to what buliding can you find the statue called “Light Sword”?
a) Grazer Oper (Opera House)
b) Landeszeughaus (Armory)
c) Palais Saurau

See if you can guess, than click “continue” for the answer!

No Smoking, unless…

I come form a city, where it’s illegal to smoke indoors in any type of business. Not only that, but it is also illegal to smoke within 20 feet of a doorway or street-level window. It’s also illegal to smoke on any city-run public space (park, beach, piazza etc.) As a non-smoker, I’ve become accustomed to practically never being exposed to cigarette smoke – save some croweded bus stops or walking behind someone who smokes. So, it takes a little getting used to all the smoke in this town – even the English Book Shop (ferchrissakes) is not immune to emplyees taking a few tokes betwen customers. And it smells like it.

I was looking online for a list of non-smoking places online and all I found is a list of places that may be non-smoking OR they could have one of those fake, separate spaces for non-smokers which is usually in the back and filled with smoke anyway. Who knows, maybe it will change, but in the meantime, I prefer…

-Barista, Sporgasse (@ Ballhausgasse)
– Konditorei Bakarei Cafe, Sporgasse (@Hoffgasse)

From personal experience, I know of two places. Do you have any more to add to the list?

Yell Fire!

I am living in a city with one of the best preserved old town centers in Europe. A city rife with spectacular vistas, beautiful traditions, historic churches, castles, palaces and museums. Every weekend there is a ton of stuff to do that would enrich my understanding of Austrian culture. So what did I do yesterday?

I went to a Hindu fire ceremony.

I suppose it was an Austrian experience and, in a way, it did enrich my understanding of contemporary Austrian culture, because Austria is diverse. It isn’t the Sound of Music, Mozart, or Germany’s little brother. I have barely skimmed the surface and I am astounded at the richness here.

And some of that richness is on Riesstrasse at the Zentrum Des Dienens, the Babaji Center of Graz. The cerememony was held in honor of a marriage (OK, it was ours) and was attended by about 40 people. It was cool; ritual chanting, offering of food, incense, offering gifts to the fire, sharing of prassad. Sweetly moving.

Afterwords, the party included medieval music, an Austrian yodeling song, a drum circle, Irish dancing, an Indian Buffet (with a Thai curry), Lebkuchen hearts, a Kardinalschnitte. Good Austrians attended from all over Graz and from as far as Stubing.

And everyone left the party with red, orange and yellow tikkas on their forehead. Now that’s Austrian.

Island Trace


it´s just an illumination trace in the dark, like lipstick on a glas
but i think you´ll find out what it is…


this is the färberplatz with the elevator to the M1 Bar,
i love the lights on this place at night, it´s like a little wonderland to drift away…


yesterday when i went home, it was sunday night, i felt like there´s no one else in the city than me.
it´s really funny to experience a city alone, everything seems to be to large scaled….

A Room With A View…

this is my view….


in the back you´ll find the minoriten cloister and the hospital,
then there is the garden of them and
in the front you see the parking garage of the kunstverein medienturm (art society)….

i recogniced that my window looks like someones keeping me locked….

My View

So here is a picture from the view out of my window.


It is the “Neue Technik” the new part of the technical university. The stairs always reminds me on the Odessa Steps in the famous scene of “The Battleship Potemkin” where the masacre takes place.

for all your rubber needs

Thanks to a savvy reader for suggesting this store when I was looking for water proof clothing. They have any, and everything that can inflate, be filled with water or repel it. It’s on Annenstraße (on the right if you have your back to the Mur). Now, someone is going to have to tell me what the history is behind the name because, according to what Altavista Online Translator tells me it means, it would never fly in politically-correct U.S.

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