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utorak, 30. prosinca 2014.

"Divas Pre Loved"...Because Being A Diva Or Dude Is Not Just For Models Anymore

If this one looks familiar, you are absolutely correct. I did this one a couple of weeks ago, and then while browsing around I noticed they updated some of their items with some cool additions.  I didn't feel like doing another quick "Photo Of The Day" of all the recent snow scenes since the big snowfall all across Croatia because I have some planned after the new year anyway. On that note, enjoy the Déjà vu.......

Celebrate the freedom to look like those people in the check out aisle magazines that YOU deserve to be.  Official website:

Now YOU can look like a Diva or Dude too!

This is just a quick spur of the moment type post. I've done a few Croatian fashion related posts in the past, (links at the bottom), but I am not a fashionista, a fashion-guru, a diva expert or men's fashion critiquer or anything like that, I just like looking at the pics sometimes after coming home from downtown and have the sudden urge to puke blood.  I don't know a thing about fashion scenes, stitching patterns, materials, recommended polyester/cotton blend ratios, recommended spring, summer, fall and winter colour and materials combinations for the year and blah blah blah. (Even the meaning of the word "Diva" has become diluted/corrupted over the years, why I remember a television segment not that long ago where the host was describing Whoopi Goldberg as a fashion diva:\ ) I just know what I like and what I don't like, just like my salad dressing, wines, hair styles and ice-cream toppings.

Businesses involved in this pre-owned clothes concept have been around for quite some time, but this one is strictly oriented towards the higher end famous fashion house and labels, stuff that the average person would otherwise never have an opportunity to wear or just walk into a store and purchase brand new. (You won't find "just like new" Levi's, Wranglers, Nikes or just slightly irregular and hardly stained sports tee's here, I'm pretty sure anyway) So while browsing around this site I found lots of stuff I liked, some I didn't. Some cool looking designs and items, and it's not just all for women either, there's guy stuff too...

Examples, more interesting examples at

This is not even a Croatian based thing either btw, but rather it's a Slovenian-Croatian venture to bring those top notch expensive world fashion brands to the general public. Their actual walk-in stores are located in Ljubljana and Zagreb. I did a little browsing and comparing and there's some good deals actually. For instance, a genuine men's Armani suit for under a 100 Euros that on another site a similar one to buy brand new was advertised for over 1000 Euros. A men's Hugo Boss leather jacket for 200 Euros where a similar brand new jacket was running over 900 Euros, etc and so on. (I have an amusing story when I was at a Hugo Boss store in the Frankfurt airport, which I'm not going to get into here) Besides, did you know that the moment you walk out of a store after purchasing some clothing it automatically becomes used and "pre-owned"....

Don't just get on the bus like everyone else, give them all a free fashion show.


Now personally, I'm sort of eclectic and mix and match. I have some Diesel, Guess, FCUK, Calvin Klein items and pieces that I mix in with Adidas, Doc Martins, Harley Davidson boots, Pepe, David Moore jacket, along with some Ray-Ban, Vuarnet or Arnette sunglasses, various artisitic or rock tees sometimes etc. Something like that, it's all about personality and being yourself, clothes are more than just pieces of cloth and rags to cover your "ahems". Like who is able to go on 3 times a week $1000 brunch time shopping sprees anyway? Pffff, not many people have that much time on their hands that's for sure. I also don't consider the description "Eurotrash" as deragatory at all, not in the least, to me it means you're eclectic in your clothing choices and that you don't ask your mom or wife to pick up a shirt or underwear for you on the way home. It means and shows that you care. (The Olsen twins are constantly being ridiculed in the press for looking Eurotrash, same thing with Tomo Milicevic)

The Eurotrash look has always been in and it makes life better for everyone around you, (really it does)

You can never have too many shoes or ties. (see Croatian neckties post)

Examples. (I like adding examples)

Anyway, you can wear whatever you want, you can wear a large oversized Wham tee, men's Uggs or dirty smelly sneakers, wear a potato sack and tinfoil hat. I don't care. (If you're looking just for something to wear to the local bar "n" grill, combination coffee/souvenir shop/draft beer emporium, bingo hall or the local no-frills grocery store, then this will probably won't be of interest to you though) But if you want some good and fair priced options or ideas, then check it out because lots of the stuff is even brand new and you can even sell them your own pre-owned or never worn designer items that are just hanging in the closet, links below...

Official website:

Future Euromodels don't want fashionable for the month or season, they don't want just "clothes" made by nobodies, they want timeless designs that are ALWAYS IN FASHION!...

Don't let today be just a fashion morning, make it the first morning of the rest of your fashion life!

Whatever you do, don't look, act and especially dress like Serboid philistine shitbirds that flock together, it's uncivilized and smells like birdpoop, you'll look like your getting ready to suck your moms hairy goat ass.  Instead think and look like a European and modern human being. Image: were-serbs-behind-boston-marathon-bombing.  More examples of how not to dress.

Isn't this the YOU that YOU and the world would much more prefer to see? There's no such thing as a bad hair day no matter how dry, frizzy or unmanageable you hair is, not when you're wearing Lanvins or Louboutins, that's for sure.

Just because you're not modelling in Europe this summer and strolling among the downtown cafes, it doesn't mean you have to dress like you gave up on life. Put that sweatshirt back in the closet and stop wearing pyjamas in public, the Walmart is open until 11 p.m. now and the hair conditioner is on sale, Yay!

When the kids are off to school, incorporate a fashion show into your daily life and chores. Make your backyard into your own personal fashion event and to hell what the neighbours think.

Don't just cross the street or just walk to the store like a nobody, make a statement. Make it your own fashion catwalk because you deserve it and it's what the people want and need. Don't let others hog all the fashion magazine glory. (see previous high heels post)

Previous related posts: rijecke-stepenice-rijeka-steps-fashion















ponedjeljak, 29. prosinca 2014.

New "Jean-Michel Nicolier Bridge" In Vukovar Named After Murdered French Volunteer

This is definitely worthy of quickly posting here, some good news that sort of brings some closure to the story of Jean-Michel Nicolier. Not total closure, but just some. I previously just touched upon the story of Jean-Michael Nicolier, a Frenchman who in 1991 after seeing on television the carnage being inflicted upon the civilians of the Croatian town of Vukovar, by heavily armed Serbs and paramilitary forces arriving from Serbia daily, and backed by the nationalist Serb run army, he decided to do something about it. A little known true story and a little extra insight about the fact that, even though there weren't many of them, there were also foreign volunteers who defended and fought for Croatian independence and freedom.

Back in 1991 Croatia didn't even have an army yet, so soon after the first democratic elections and declaration of Croatian independence, the town of Vukovar was being defended by just a handful of policemen and lightly armed Croatian National Guard soldiers against jet planes, cannons, hundreds of tanks and even thousands of mortars being fired into the town daily. Many times 2 or more defenders had to even share between themselves the same weapon, and very limited ammunition. In a nutshell, just this past October a bridge in the town was named after the French volunteer. After 3 months of daily bombardment and supplies almost non-existent, he and the other defenders of the town refused to leave Vukovar, even as the end of was almost near and outnumbered and outgunned 100 to 1, just like in that scene from the movie "300". They refused to give up and leave the towns innocent civilians at the mercy of heavily armed Serbs with nothing but destruction and murder on their minds.

I added that original post at the bottom which has much more information, it also touches upon some other volunteers who also came to Vukovar after seeing the carnage on their television. There wasn't a lot of them, but they came to do what they could. (I already mentioned this previously, but I probably would have been there too, but things were complicated as I was already in the Canadian Armed Forces at the time, a whole bunch of sticky complicated factors and repercussions if I had gone AWOL) Anyway, at least there's some kind of lasting memorial in the town of Vukovar now, a bridge that people will use everyday and bear his name. More information at the links or you can view visit for more.

There, I feel better now. You see, I had to post this, it's the soldier code thing..honor, principles, priorities, etc. If I didn't do this topic I would have felt like the lowliest of scum afterwards, like that scummy scum one sees in grungy old gasoline station washrooms, like that gooey and crusty filthy scum in the pipes just beneath the sink drain that smells like death and horror and grotesqueness personified, like that bubbling toxic blackish sticky goo that makes even the cockroaches decide to go elsewhere. Worse than even the cockroaches themselves.Yep, I feel better now, sort of like my good deed just before the new year.

(If you're one of those Croatian military buffs and want more updated information about todays Croatian Armed Forces, see a post from just a few days ago HERE, and yhen the previous post links there)




The town of Vukovar now officially has a bridge named after French volunteer Jean-Michel Nicolier. 


The Vukovar Town Council on Thursday decided to rename the town's pedestrian bridge across the River Vuka after French volunteer Jean-Michel Nicolier, killed during the defence of the town against besieging Serb paramilitaries backed by the Yugoslav army in 1991.

"In this way we pay tribute to a man who came from France to Croatia to fight for Vukovar and who ultimately gave his life for truth and justice in Croatia," Mayor Ivan Penava of the Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ) said.

Nicolier joined the Croatian Defence Forces (HOS) in the defence of Vukovar in 1991. Early in November of that year he was wounded and transferred to the town's hospital where he stayed until the fall of the town. He was among at least 200 Croatian soldiers and civilians executed at the Ovcara farm outside the town on November 20, 1991. His body has still not been found.

President Ivo Josipovic has posthumously awarded him a high state order for his contribution to the defence of Croatia and the medal was received by his mother, Lyliane Forunier.

Jeans mother at the unveiling of the Jean-Michel Nicolier Bridge.


A pedestrian bridge named after a Frenchman who was killed whilst volunteering during the Croatian War of Independence has opened this weekend in the eastern town of Vukovar…

Jean-Michel Nicollier, who had no connection whatsoever to Croatia, arrived in the country in 1991 to help the Croatian army defend its land after watching the conflict unfold on television in his native France. Whilst defending the eastern city of Vukovar in November of 1991, the French volunteer was wounded and taken to Vukovar hospital. After spending just under 2 weeks in hospital, he was taken from the hospital by the Yugoslav People’s Army and paramilitary Serb forces and transported to Ovčara farm where he was killed.

On Saturday the Mayor of Vukovar, Nicollier’s mother Lyliane, the French Embassy’s Advisor for Culture and the Director of the Institute of France in Zagreb, Luc Levy, and a number of Vukovar locals turned out as a plaque was unveiled on the new 50-metre long bridge named in his honour after internet voting, which crosses the River Vuka in the centre of Vukovar. Lyliane Nicollier thanked those who turned out to pay their respects to her son.

Last known photograph of Jean-Michel Nicollier before he was executed by Serb chetniks and paramilitaries at the  Ovcara Hospital massacre after the fall of Vukovar.

French television interview translation: "Friends and family told me many times to leave Vukovar and return to France, but I stayed. I knew it would be hard, but I didn't think it would be so awful, especially for the civilians. As a volunteer I came to Vukovar, that was my decision, for better or worse. These people needed help and that's why I decided to come to their side. 

From Croatian television a brief synopsis of the day. Jean's mother was at the bridge ceremony with some other family members, recalling how he and the other remaining Croatan defenders refused to leave the town up to the last minute, even knowing they may be killed. She recalls how he decided to come to Vukovar after seeing television footage of unarmed civilians being bombed, shelled and killed by heavily armed Serbian chetnik forces and paramilitaries.

A Croatian artist made a memorial statue to be erected on the island of Brač. Image/story:

From Croatian television, the last known footage of Jean-Michel Nicolier. He and other defenders were urged to leave before the town fell, yet they refused to leave. Jean told his mother that he considered Croatia his homeland now and Vukovar his hometown. Soon after this last footage of him being interviewed for French television, he along with hundreds of other Croatian POW'S and civilian hospital patients were brutally executed just outside of Vukovar. His remains have never been found.

French television broadcasting the story of Vukovar and Jean-Michel Nicolier.

Another French television special report telling Jean's and Vukovars story to the world. Interviews with his mother, family members and those that knew him in Vukovar paint a portrait of a person who wanted to do what was right.

Envoyé Spécial La Suite - Qui a tué le Français de Vukovar from Julien Tridat on Vimeo.


The story of Jean-Michel Nicolier was also broadcast nationally on French television.

A night time view of the Jean-Michel Nicolier Bridge.

Indicted Serb war criminal Vojeslav Seselj and Serb paramilitaries shortly after the fall of Vukovar  in 1991.

After the fall of Vukovar, Jean-Michel Nicolier and hundreds of other patients, including civilians were executed at the Vukovar Hospital massacre.

A recent Serbian chetnik and nationalist celebration which shows what really goes on behind the scenes, perhaps interesting to some readers.

“Irish Braveheart” Thomas Crowley Posthumously Awarded Croatian Medal of Honour

Original post: irish-braveheart-thomas-crowley

I came across this particular story not that long ago. I knew that when the Yugo-Serbian hostilities commenced against Croatian independence and it's citizens, that there were volunteers coming to Croatia from around the world.  Like I touched upon previously on this blog, I was in the Canadian Armed Forces at the time and was on the verge of doing the same thing.  When the news reports first started describing the horror of Vukovar especially, I was unfortunately also in the middle of field exercises.

Unfortunately, because of my circumstances, going AWOL is a very serious charge. It would probably have meant not only coming back, but also down the road possibly being extradited for the charges.  After discussing with friends different scenarios, I decided instead to put requests through chain of command to be sent as part of the Canadian peacekeepers contingent eventually being sent there. I tried to explain how with my working knowledge of the language, having been there previously, even as recently as just months prior when the first democratic elections were taking place in Croatia, that I could possibly be a good candidate for an interpreter/liaison role too.

Long story short, the result wasn't what I wanted and hoped for.  My contract was soon to expire  in the military and so I discussed the situation with my superiors at the "Hive" and I left to go back to civilian life.  I had ordered various military kit from a local Army Surplus store and was deciding the best route to get there. However, by that time Vukovar had fallen, most of the worst of the carnage had taken place, the Serbian land grab was already occupying about 1/3 of Croatian territory and all the peacekeeping and useless political talks and dialogues were going on seemingly neverending. The world stage was now focusing on the Serbian shelling of Sarajevo and their carnage in Bosnia and Hercegovina. I was still close to leaving because there were still numerous ceasefires that were being broken by the occupying Srbs, and skirmishes here and there afterwards, but by that time the Croatian army was growing in personnel, organization and had become better armed, so I finally got talked out of it. Sometimes I look back and think I should have left when I at first planned to.  Also, I know for a fact that if my situation didn't involve the sticky issue of being in the Canadian Forces at that time, the repercussions of going AWOL, etc, (I'll let this guy explain)... I without a doubt would have been there too......

Thomas Crowley, Major of the at the time newly formed and emerging Croatian Army (1991 – 1995)


At the Medal of Honour awards ceremony 12 December 2012 at the Office of the President of Croatia, the late Major in Croatian Army, Thomas Crowley, was posthumously awarded the Medal of Petar Zrniski and Fran Krsto Frankopan with gold triple interlace for his exceptional contribution to the defence of Croatia during Croatia’s War of Independence. The Medal was accepted on behalf of Thomas Crowley’s family from Ireland by their solicitor Mr Miroslav Vrkljan.


Thomas Crowley, nicknamed “the Irish” by his Croatian army mates, came to Croatia in 1991 as volunteer, joining Croatian men in defending Croatian independence from Serb aggression.  He saw the images on television of Yugoslav forces shelling and targeting civilians in the city of Osijek, then when saw a Yugoslav tank crushing a red Fiat car who's driver was assisting to pick up and transport wounded civilians, he decided to leave immediately to help the newly independent country.

Thomas Crowley, born Irish on 14 February 1949, came to Croatia and died as a Croatian on 10 June 1995.

I came to Croatia at the beginning of the war and I have a big wish to remain in Croatia until the last bit of its occupied territory is liberated, and then stay longer. I consider Croatia my homeland; I’m prepared to even give my life for Croatia. God willing, if I’m still alive when the war ends, I’ll stay and live in Croatia,” Crowley once said.  He did remain in Croatia – that is his remains are buried in the cemetery of Split.

Up to the 38 second mark is images of the Serbian Yugoslav General Blagoje Adzic stating "Long live the Yugoslav army, who will bring peace and freedom to Osijek".  The footage then switches to images of the Yugoslav army along with Serb paramilitary and air force bringing peace and freedom to apartment buildings, homes, schools, hospitals, parks and the people of Osijek.

Crowley became a living legend in Croatia. In 1991 he joined the Croatian Defense Forces’ (HOS) Ante Paradzik First Battalion. He was one of many foreigners who came to Croatia to help defend Croatian independence and people from the Serbian ethnic cleansing campaigns.

He was a commando at battlefield Novljani and Jasenovac. In December 1991 he transferred to the Ninth HOS Battalion in Split where he was the main instructor for HOS forces in Trogir and Cijevo army camps.

He participated in battles at Livno (where, single-handed, captured an enemy [Serb] tank), he was in battles for Mostar, Dubrovnik, Popovo Polje, Operation Maslenica, liberation of Skabrnje (where horrendous massacres of Croatian civilians by Serb forces occurred only two days after Vukovar massacres in November 1991).

Then in Zemunik he was wounded in battle. He was in Prkos to the end of April 1993 and then led the military operations near Biograd (Dalmatia). Then to Drnis battlefield, Svilaja, Donje selo and by 1994 he led the instruction camp for the 114th brigade. Some 2000 members of the 114th brigade passed through his camps.

He died on the 10th of June 1995, killed on the Southern battlefield.  17 years later to the very day, Croatia played Ireland at the 2012 UEFA European Football Championships. He is buried in Split.

 Up to the 1:00 minute mark is images of  the Yugoslav army attacking Croatian towns and cities. From 1:00 to 1:28 minute mark is images of the first stages of armed Croatian defence by only special police units.  From 1: 30 to the 2:25 minute mark is images of Serbian chetnik volunteers in Serbia joining with the Yugoslav army to assist in ethnic cleansing and genocide in Croatia.  The rest is mainly a tribute to Thomas Crowley.

Association of Foreign Volunteers of the Homeland War 1991 - 1995 

  "This organization represents all foreign volunteers who fought, risked or gave their life for the freedom and independence of Croatia "

Croatia - Bosnia / 1991 - 1995 

 Our History

As the twentieth century drew to a close communist ideology finally collapsed, and countries that had spent half a century under oppressive dictatorships now emerged to take their rightful place in the free world.

Croatia was such a country, a nation and a people who had kept alive an unfulfilled dream of independence and freedom for hundreds of years. But unlike most of eastern europe, that long denied dream would still require years of struggle and sacrifice against a dictatorship that still held on to its past.

 Croatia's towns, cities and villages were shelled relentlessly from air,land and sea. The county's religious and cultural symbols were slowly and deliberately being destroyed in the quest for a "Greater Serbia".

The International Community looked on and did nothing to halt the gross military imbalance, blatant Serbian aggression and the Armies advancing into Croatia, "cleansing" civilian areas as well as military targets as it went.

British volunteers in December 1991. Photogallery of some other foreign volunteers HERE.

We watched those pictures on television and heard politicians talk of ceasefires whilst Serb paramilitaries marched through Croatian towns. Disgusted by the inability of the international community and our own governments to halt the slaughter, individuals rose to the challenge from every civilised nation, setting aside political, ideological and cultural differences.

Most protested, raised funds or conducted humanitarian operations. Many went further to help. Volunteering to fight for Croatia, bringing with them the will to fight for another county's freedom and the courage to stay and win it.

We were welded by a shared purpose; the prevention of murder, rape and the wholesale destruction of civilian property and cultural heritage. Individuals stood when their own countries turned their backs.

We individuals became known as the Foreign Volunteers.

Present in every front-line brigade, volunteers could be found on all of Croatia's five fronts as well as in the overcrowded hospitals of Zagreb. We were an enormous boost to civilian morale and our presence in battered front-line towns brought resolve to exhausted defenders. And a realisaton that Croatia did have its allies.We helped reorganise defensive positions and stiffened crumbling units. We fought as front-line infantry and taught on the job military skills to men who weeks before were ordinary civilians going about their business. In return we learned their language, received their hospitality and gained mutual respect.

When Bosnia became the next target of the Yugoslav Army and its Serb paramilitaries the Foreign Volunteers headed south in order to help the Forces of the Croatian Defence Council (HVO) in defending its land.

Many volunteers paid the ultimate price and sacrificed their lives. 76 men were killed in action and 90 injured, a 30% casualty rate. Their sacrifice helped win independence and freedom for Croatia, after five years of war.

From Vukovar in the east, West to Pula and south to Prevlaka. One nation, one people, all free.

Our Aims

Our aim is to remind the world of our contribution and sacrifice for a countrys independence, to get rid of the myth of foreign volunteers as "mercenaries", also we aim to get recognition from the Croatian authorities and have the same rights as Croatian veterans.



Last known photograph of Jean-Michel Nicolier before executed by Serb chetniks and paramilitaries at the Ovcara Hospital massacre after the fall of Vukovar.

Members of the International Foreign Volunteer's arrive for ceremony to commemorate the victims and slaughter 17 years after the "Fall of Vukovar"

Every November the members and friends of the USDDR meet up in Vinkovci, Croatia.  We attend the national Vukovar remembrance parade as well as our own remembrance ceremonies; at Ovcara, where 200 people incuding Ivan Herman (Austria) and Jean-Michel Nicolier (France) were executed following the fall of Vukovar. Also we have a ceremony in Vinkovci itself where we remember the foreigners killed in action.

The town of Vukovar today.

subota, 27. prosinca 2014.

Photos Of The Day: Dubrovnik Invaded By Moto-Mraz Biker Santa Clauses

Here's something quick and light today, I included pics from this same annual event at a previous post HERE, here's some images from this year. Just a bunch of biker Santa Clauses who show up in the old part of Dubrovnik and hand out candy and free rides, nothing too important but interesting. This takes place every year around this time and actually in many other Croatian cities and towns, a hellish and ghoulish spectacle of red suited and sunglassed bikers handing out high calorie sweets and free bike rides, they do many similar events to raise funds for various charities throughout the year. I should also mention, today the Zagreb Bears hockey club (KHL Medvešščak Zagreb) will take to the ice at the Spengler Cup taking place in Davos, Switzerland, which is often cited as the worlds oldest invitational hockey tournament, so that's an historic hockey and sports moment for Croatia. I'll update that story with pics and video if available when the tournament is over. (More on that topic at a post HERE)

I'll just quickly add also that this winter in Europe has been on the mild side and not the most snow filled season so far, but it recently snowed and temperatures have been hanging below zero in the mountains above Zagreb, and more colder temperatures and snow are forecasted for the next few days, so the Alpine skiing World cup slalom races taking place starting January 4th are definitely a go, so that's good to know (you can keep up to date on that event at hence the inclusion of the falling snow effect on my blog for the next little while......

Ho, ho, ho, brum, brum, brum.... Moto Mraz Santas arrived to the Stradun in Dubrovnik.


Related: santa-clause-bikers-rafters-windsurfing

A few scenes from the Dubrovnik Moto-Mraz Santa Clauses in 2008.

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And The Croatian City To Be A European Capital of Culture In 2020 Will Be...(Drum Roll).....Rijeka

Yep, I know it's still 2 years away and I already covered this topic last year when it was announced, but I added a few extra imag...