Another Election

pancakesThere is an election coming up next week in the Netherlands, and not to be outdone by America, US, or France, we have our own nationalist party with our own populist politician. He has permanently blond hair with the help of chemicals, and a foreign-born wife. We have a form of proportional representation here which results in multiple parties standing in each election, and most often a coalition government. Lately it’s been a centre-right coalition.

I can’t vote, as I’m not a Dutch citizen, but I’ve been watching the news and talking to Dutch friends about the election. And then I came across this image that compares the parties to pancake recipes.

dutch election

Here’s my translation;

How do you make pancakes?

  • VVD: (centre right, leader of coalition) Figure that out for yourself
  • PvdA: (labour party) You make pancakes together
  • CDA: (Christian Democrats) You make pancakes the same way you always have
  • PVV: (Nationalist) Go back to your own land if you don’t know that
  • D66: (liberal) everyone can learn to make pancakes
  • SP: (socialists) with a rotation
  • GroenLinks: (greens) using wind energy
  • Partij voor de Dieren: (animal rights party) with soya milk
  • 50Plus: (pensioners interests) with home help
  • SGP: (calvinist) with God’s help
  • ChristenUnie: also with God’s help
  • DENK: (migrant’s interests) Pancakes are racist
  • Artikel 1: Pancakes are colonialist
  • Pirate party: No-one can know how you cook pancakes
  • GeenPeil: We’ll take a referendum on this
  • Nieuwe Wegen: (new, left wing party) Wij bakken ze heel anders
  • Non Voters: ….

I guess non voters aren’t getting any pancakes.


Images; Raspberry Pancake   |   Maria   |   CC NC-ND 2.0

Dutch Pancake Election  |  Bas Bellenan via Alwin Zandvoort


I love this city

On Thursday I went to the movies at Pathe Munt and wanted to park my bike at the floating bike park opposite the flower market. But it stank, literally. Lots of rubbish, and crows feeding. So I tweeted this;

My tweet was acknowledged and my concerns reported. 4 minutes ago I got another tweet from the City Council’s webcare team.

Love this city.

Driver’s Licence

I’ve been here so long I need to renew my driver’s licence (they last 10 years).

I managed to make it hard for myself by screwing up the first step – twice. Meaning that I had to request a new DigiD twice. DigiD is the government online identification that lets you complete applications, requests, tax returns etc online.

The next step was to find out whether I was “geschikt”, or “suitable” to be given a licence. According to the CBR, responsible for administering Dutch Driver’s licences,  I am.

Then I needed to get a passport photo; for which I had to re-arrange my hair (apparently you must show your ears) and then re-arrange my face (apparently you must not show a smile).

With all of that done I went off to lodge my application at the Gemeente (Townhall/city council). In the Netherlands a lot of national documents, including passports, are administered by the city councils. The actual lodging of the application was quick and painless – and cost 38 euro. It’ll be ready in five days. Hurrah.

driversqueueHowever the waiting to lodge my application took a while, about forty minutes. To add to the fun the ticket number the receptionist gave me was “L434”, and there are tickets in the “D”, “O”, “K” series, so it was a bit hard to judge how long I would wait.  I got there just after 9am, and when I left just before 10am the waiting room was busy and there was a queue at reception. So I recommend getting there as early as possible – the office opens at 8.30.

Bonus points for me – I did the whole thing in Dutch. Goen gedaan, toch!