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Paris Maderna

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In those days, Paris Maderna was a colourful character. He was young, and not so much an inventor but a reinventor of things that had already been invented. And, when I got to know him he was busy reinventing the bike. And, one of his new ideas was not only brilliant, but rather unusual as well.
Paris Maderna's new bike looked more like a bed with three wheels than a bike. And, to ride it, one had to lie in it, not sit on it, and the pedals were up at the front and coupled to the front single wheel. And, riding it, Paris Maderna promised, was not only simple, but comfortable, too. And, I will never forget the day that I saw it in action.
To begin with, Paris Maderna explained how it worked. To steer to the right, one had to lean to the right, and vice-versa for left. There was no other way. The bike had neither steering wheel norhandlebars and to stop, one had to simply stop pedalling. It was all very simple. And, then with a smile and a grin Par…

Michael Koch 002

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Click here to listen to Michael Koch's Diary number 2
My name is Michael Koch. I live in Vienna's 12th district. This is my diary On Monday, I tried something new. I went to yoga with Mary. My first and last time. I fell asleep on my mat. I started snoring. Very embarrassing. Never again. No wonder yoga's for women.On Tuesday, I asked Mary if she'd seen Eileen. I'd tried to call Jim. But, no luck. I hope he's OK. Will try again another time.On the U4 coming home, I remembered Mary's birthday. I decided to go to Morava's. A wonderful book shop. They have a wonderful selection. I always go to Morava's.On Wednesday, Mary bumped into Eileen again. This time at yoga. Eileen told Mary that Jim was feeling much better. No need to worry. Eileen, on the other hand, was not looking well. Eileen told Mary she'd been working too hard. Eileen works at the town hall. The Rathaus.On Thursday, I went to Morava's. I bought a cookery book …

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Michael KOCH - Episode 001

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My name is Michael Koch. I live in Vienna's 12th district. This is my diary.Monday was just another normal day. Nothing much happened. I went to work as usual. I worked hard all day. And, at 5 I got home. Mary was at yoga. I made myself some tea and turned on the tele.Mary got home around 8. She too had had a very normal day. Cleaning, shopping, nothing unusual. But, there was one little thing that interested me.While shopping at Hoffer's, Mary bumped into Eileen. An old friend. Eileen told Mary that Jim hadn't been well. This worried me. Jim and I were old friends. We had worked together in London. I made a note in my mind to give Jim a buzz.Tuesday and Wednesday were very busy days. Jane, my new assistant, did everything wrong. I had to do everything myself. I got home very late on Wednesday evening. About 9. I was too tired to do anything. So, we just watched a bit of tele before getting an early night.Thursday started off in a very bad way. Nothing but …

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Oscar Magocsi - A Path to the stars

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On his 65th birthday, Oscar Magocsi sat down to write his very first book. A science fiction book. The aliens were little green men. Their planet was light years away. The ending was brilliant. Peace on earth and the universe, too.Oskar Magocsi believed his book was the best. But, there was only one very small problem. There was not one single publisher in all North America who liked it. But, Oskar Magocsi knew his book would succeed. Where there's a will, there's a way.And, the solution appeared in the small ads of a history magazine. Oscar Magocsi saw an advert for gardening books. Maybe, it would work for him, too. His advert appeared in the very next issue.From then on, things started to happen. Oskar Magocsi couldn't believe his success. Orders and cheques. The orders kept coming and coming. To begin with, Oskar Magocsi produced his own copy shop books. Real books quickly followed. And, within just a short space of time, Oscar Magocsi had risen to the top …

St. Valentine

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Valentine's Day – Stones and Champagne and Flowers and Cards!February the 14th is Valentine's Day. People send flowers, go out for candle-light meals, drink Champaign by the bucket, and are generally nice. A wonderful day. But, the best part of all is the British tradition of Valentine's cards. Great excitement and fun.Valentine's cards are anonymous. No one knows who they're from. They simply flutter in with the post. And, the fun's in the guessing who sent them. Love should then follow. But, usually it doesn't. Mostly a story of dreams.And, St. Valentine's cards are romantically arty. Most have pictures of red hearts and roses. And, all of them beg, “Be my Valentine.” Romantically silly. But, the two Valentine's cards I received said exactly the opposite. On the front of the first card was a horrible picture. Rats, slugs, cockroaches, and snakes. All very revolting. And, when I opened the card, the message was simple and straight to…