Why I’m a volunteer, and proud to be.

I’m not sure how WordPress feels about copying and pasting straight from another blog (even if it is my own), so I shall instead leave this one as a link: https://fancifulreality.wordpress.com/2013/02/22/have-you-ever-considered-volunteering/

I don’t intend on crossposting from my other blog or YouTube channels a regular thing, in the sense that I’m definitely not posting here every single post or video that I do. But sometimes I discuss topics elsewhere that would be perfectly at home here, and the exact sort of things I wanted to use this blog for. So when those posts happen, I will probably crosspost them here too. šŸ™‚ That way, you don’t have to go subscribe to a blog that’s half about make up and fashion and vlogging if you don’t want to, but you can still read the more interesting posts that go up over there.

The blog includes two video links – one is a general discussion of my volunteering, like the blog post but in less/different detail, and the other is a haul video of what I’ve bought recently at a few charity shops. So if this interests you, please feel free to go check it out!

Until next time,

Sascha

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Cover Version Tuesday #4

And the embarrassment begins. I professed at the beginning of my journey into cover version contests that I would be completely honest about which songs I include; I wasn’t going to skip over any songs I own to avoid looking uncool in any way. This was simply because I’m rarely actually embarrassed by things I listen to; sure, I like Spice Girls and 90s dance and the Braveheart soundtrack, and it’s more than nostalgia. I’m not ashamed to admit that, but I’ll admit that I am a little bit of a music elitist in that I’d probably judge you if Nicki Minaj was your all-time favorite music ever in the whole history of music. See, we all like a variety of stuff, but no one likes all songs equally. I tend to judge based on people’s favorites, not their general taste (I don’t go around judging people with fiery eyes and a “THOU SHALT NOT LIKE JUSTIN BIEBER, OKAY?!”, fyi – it’s more just in my own head), but I’m not really one of those people who goes around acting as if their own music is so superior because reasons. Obviously I think what I like is better than what someone else likes; that’s how liking things tends to work.

Anyway, I digress. Possibly to avoid admitting that this week’s song is… umm… do I admit this… the Axel F tune. And if you’ve realized already, I don’t include covers unless I own a cover version, so I confess, I do own a cover. The… Crazy Frog one to be precise. I knoooooow *cue boos from all sides of the gallery* but it’s too damn catchy. And as I tried to explain in the previous paragraph, it’s not my favorite song – nowhere near! – so that’s how I’m trying to justify this. I could have spared myself the embarrassment by simply not including it, but oh no, I have to want to be honest, don’t I? Silly me. Well, I won’t be surprised if this post gets no comments or feedback even if it remains intact for the next 500 million years (maybe except to say “haha, you like Crazy Frog, lol”). (This is the moment where IĀ don’t confess I actually bought the album, because apparently I was the coolest 14 year old ever.) Then again, I might get droves of people insisting the 2000s cartoon character annoying memey thing can’t possibly be superior to the original, and how dare I even suggest such a blasphemous thing?! But I don’t know the general public’s thoughts on an 80s film soundtrack, so we’ll see.

Getting on with things, here’s the original. Maybe I don’t need to explain its background and origin, but then again, there might be some young’uns reading! The Axel F theme was performed by Harold Faltermeyer and appears on the soundtrack for the film Beverly Hills Cop, which was released in 1985.

And of course, the infamous Crazy Frog cover, which I am a little ashamed to say I own and… ahem… enjoy listening to. It was released in 2005. What else to say? It annoys the Hell out of people, usually!

That took a long time to track down – I guess mine isn’t the original or something? I don’t know, but this one here is the one I have – the original says stuff like “This is the Crazy Froooog!” but mine doesn’t – Gods be praised?

I just can’t resist the catchiness of the Crazy Frog one, sorry. If mine had all the “vocals” included that apparently are in the original, it would annoy me too, but some little ‘ring ding ding bem bem’s don’t really bother me enough. I guess it’s just that part of me that can’t resist a techno-style beat. The original’s just so flat in comparison. Annoying meme thingy wins this round!

What do you think? Am I completely crazy for preferring the cover? Am I completely crazy for bravely admitting that I even like this song? Which version do you prefer?

Until next Tuesday,
x

How I would love to see the world from beginning to end.

Usually when I answer the question of what I would wish for if a genie granted me three wishes, it goes along the lines of “unlimited money, teleportation, and to finally master fluency in French and/or many other languages”. Last night, however, I had one of those *slaps head* moments (I cannot decide for the life of me if this is the right way to phrase what I mean: some sort of revelation moment, you know?) where it occurred to me that of course I would want the ability to time travel!

Although I am insanely curious about what the future will have in store for humanity, evolution-wise and definitely technology-wise, I was thinking more about the past. I am a history enthusiast; like anyone, I have certain times and places I like most (Tudor England, Ancient Rome/Greece/Egypt, 18th century Europe in general, and Victorian era England, e.g.), but history in general thrills me. It does. And there are certain aspects of history that it pains me to realize: there’s so much we will never know for sure.

Did Richard III kill the Princes in the Tower? Was Anne Boleyn framed? What was it like to listen to Plato? Was Nero really lazy-eyed and obese? Just how badly did Henry VIII actually smell with the festering ulcers on his legs?! There are so many questions I ask myself regarding certain historical people, and it really is heartbreaking that I’ll never know if Hadrian really was as hot as his statues suggest or if Anne of Cleves was ridiculously ugly.

The desire to experience life in those eras is a very tempting one, but only in the temporary sense; as a young woman, I probably would not fare well in the past! But if I could be a spectator, if I could listen to the preachings of Jesus Christ, and be a fly on the wall during tumultuous, mysterious times whose truth has been lost to discover what really happened, and see what these historical figures genuinely looked like, whether they resemble their portraits or not, oh, if I could have such an opportunity I would be a happy bunny indeed.

So if I ever come across a genie in a lamp, I will remember to neglect to mention my desire to become even more fluent a polyglot and offer myself the chance of a lifetime – or thousands of lifetimes – ensuring that I was armed with camera in order to write the biggest blog post anyone’s ever read!

Cover Version Contest #3

Today’s contest is a bit more interesting than the previous ones! The cover featured is very different from the original, making the decision either a whole lot easier or a whole lot harder, depending on your music taste! I own and love both versions in this case, and for me it’s hard to choose simply because they’re so different!

The song is question is All About Us by Russian pop duo t.A.T.u. It was released in 2005 on their second album Dangerous and Moving. I’m including a lyrics video instead of the actual music video because that could be triggering to victims of sexual assault.

The band who covered this song is Sonic Syndicate, a band from Sweden who are considered melodic death metal or metalcore (I’m not one for categorizing music so specifically). The cover is certainly very interesting, and when I bought the album, Only Inhuman, which was released in 2007, hearing a cover of t.A.T.u song I already loved was completely unexpected!

Obviously if screamo vocals aren’t your thing, you’ll probably prefer the t.A.T.u one by default! I absolutely love Sonic Syndicate, more than I love t.A.T.u, but I’ve got to say the latter band wins this round. I think it’s an excellent cover, but the original just pips it to the post.

So what do you think? Can you handle the metal? Do you prefer to listen to pop that doesn’t make your ears bleed? Or is the original not hardcore enough for you? Which version do you prefer?

Until next Tuesday,
x

Cover Version Tuesday (2)

Because I’m the most reliable and organized girl you ever did know, I almost forgot to post this week’s Cover Version song until now, when it’s after 9pm and I’m about to wind down for the night (this is me pretending I haven’t spent the whole day ‘winding down’, of course). Because I’m the most reliable and organized girl you ever did know, I posted the wrong song for the first incarnation of the contest, it utterly eluding me that I own songs that start with a number, which does come before ‘A’. So today’s late-night post includes the song that should have been posted instead of the Adias!

I like Nena a bit, in that I have more than one song of hers. Most people know the 99 Red Balloons (99 Luftballons) song. I’m not sure how many people would admit to liking it, on the other hand, never mind owning it. I like and own it, the German original. It was released in 1983 (1984 in the UK) on their (since Nena is a lot like Marilyn Manson and is the name of the band as well as the singer) self-titled album. I have the German one, but I’ll include the English one as well, just so you can hear the version you’re probably more familiar with, and for a more direct comparison to the cover version.

German:

English:

 

American punk rock band Goldfinger covered the song on their third album Stomping Ground, released in 2000. The song begins in English, but the last verse is sung in (poor) German, which ends up sounding a bit like an Australian accent!

 

Now, depending on which Nena version I compare the Goldfinger to, my answer changes. If I compare the German original to the Goldfinger, I can’t help but prefer the classic original. I love what Goldfinger have done with the song, though. If I compare the English Nena version with the Goldfinger, the latter comes out on top. The Nena version comes out sounding poorly put together to me ā€“ the lines don’t seem to be very well-paced! So there it is: German Nena > Goldfinger > English Nena ā€“ that’s how I see it.

I can’t help but laugh at the Goldfinger singer’s German, but I love that he tried!

So which version do you prefer? Is Nena’s song too 80s-sounding for your liking? Do you like the updated punk/ska version? What are your reasons for choosing the version you did?

Join me next week for another ~episode~ of Cover Version Tuesday, when I shall hopefully be a lot more organized and choose the correct song!