Your Forum name
Currently managing a Helpdesk for a smallish but growing software company in the area of New Product Development Product Lifecycle Management. Focus for the Helpdesk is Europe, Middle East and Africa giving me an opportunity to show off my language skills on a daily basis
And time to bully the newbies on the forum
Maastricht, the Netherlands - the navel of Europe, an hours drive from Brussels, Antwerp, Cologne. A couple more hours take me to Dieppe or Paris. I cycle to London because that's too far for me to drive
(honestly! - I live 10 minutes cycling away from Maastricht airport
Married and proud father to two daughters, both living in Amsterdam - they share a 1992 Lancia Ypsilon 1.1 i.e. LX Selectronic - wooden steering wheel, alcantara interior, automatic tempreature control, sunroof - the works!
which cars do you drive and why?
I tend to take the girls' for a spin when they're around, sometimes senior management's - also a Lancia of younger vintage, and of course, the trusty SW 2.0 JTS.
When my brother's off abroad, I get to keep an eye on his carpark - a Q7 from the dark side and a turboed TT...
Are you a real passionate for Alfa Romeo?
Am I ever...
What or how started your passion for Alfa Romeo and…
….do you think it’s fundamental to own one to have the passion?
I was living in Geneva in the late 60ies/early seventies. I saw a dark blue Alfa Romeo GIULIA T.I. SUPER 1750 parked along the side of the road on my way to school. I'll own one like that once is what I told myself. The poise. The class. The elegance. The classic beauty and purpose of the thing got me and lnever let me go...
The passion came before the ownership, so no: you can have it without owning one.
Would you ever consider joining an Alfa Club or are you already a member of one?
I am considering a membership of the Dutch AR club but I'm not of a gregarious nature and the idea of a car club does not particularly appeal to me. So it may take a while.
What do you like most about Alfas?
The poise. The class. The elegance. The classic beauty and purpose.
What do you like least about Alfas?
Can you like something least? The weight of the 159, Brera, new Spider...
What would be your dream cars?
There's the Giulia TI.
The Maserati Quattroporte - there's a 1997 2.0/280 HP in dark blue that has been staring at me for a little while now...
As a daily driver - company owned - I feel so lucky to have been able to get the 156. So much more fun than anything I've previously used. And when the time comes to trade in, I really would not know what to pick next. A nice GT Imola in dark blue with the natural leather comes to mind...
What car would you least like to drive?
Of the cars I've driven, I think the Mondeo most apalled me.
For you, what’s the most popular thread on AO?
AFter initial meddlings in the tech lounges and getting my bearings, I have turned to the WOT lounge and the IPT thread specifically. I come and go as I please, however and will - when given time - also wade through the piccies lounge - there's always someone there who just did to his car what I should have been doing: massage it, pamper it, shine it, detail it...
What would be your ideal drive in an Alfa (destination, passenger, driving music, etc)?
There's a trip I take a couple of times a year to a place in the French Alps to get away from it all - the trip has everything: long stretches of free for all German racetrack, nice and quiet backroads in running up through Switserland to the Alps, the drive along the south side of Lac Léman, then the invitation to dance from apex to apex on the cols leading up to Les Gets from Thonon, then Joux Plane and down to Samoëns.
The wife at my side, some Jazz, classical, rock, pop disks in the spinner, local radio and once in the mountains just the roar of the engine...
Any humorous Alfa or car-related stories you wish to share with us?
Nothing funny 'bout Alfa
In the early 90ies, just before the winter trip to the Alps, I bought a second-hand Audi 100 Avant - the 2.3 liters with a lot of goodies
and drove up there with the wife and the kids. Obviously, the Joux Plane col was closed. But it looked clean enough so I thought, what the heck, I know the way, I know the road like my back pocket, I'll give it a shot.
True enough, the south part went like clockwork.
Then the turn over the shoulder towards the north side and yes - there was some ice there. Quite a lot of ice to be honest. So the front wheels lost their grip. The wife grabbed the door switch to get out. The kids were listening to their walkman. The front started to veer to the left (where the big gaping hole called valley was hungrily waiting).
I do not know what I did but it must have been the right combination of keeping cool and a lot of other quick things but within the space of two seconds I had the car facing the other way around and trying to look cool, all I said was: Bit slippery, better go back and around the long way.
Nothing more was said.
My heart was beating in my throat but no harm came to anyone.
It was a lesson: Col Fermé means that it's closed. And if closed, that is usually for a good reason.
What interests do you have outside of Alfas?
Oh - allright then: Wife, kids, mountain sports (skiing, climbing, hiking - it's really good to be living in Holland then, smartypants), music, wining and dining and having a laugh with friends. Reading and the arts (arts unspecified - art is our safeguard against debility and the loss of culture and good manners)
Tell us something nobody knows about you. (E.g. special skill, ever been on TV, etc)
That would be soooo wrong.
But, since you're asking: I don't iron my own shirts, despite rumours to the contrary.
Do you have a party trick? If so what is it?
Sorry, none of that, I'm afraid...
What do you like most about the Alfaowner forum? Any favourite threads, episodes or people?
They're all maniacs.
With a life worth living.
Maniacs worth getting to know on-line and off.
But maniacs all the same
If you had £50,000 you had to spend in 72 hours, how would you choose to spend it?
Never having saved any money in my life, and at my age, I think the reasonable thing to do would be to put it into my pension.
Knowing myself, however, I would probably invest in my stereo, buy a GTA SW (in red
), and go on a trip through Europe following Geert Mak's book about Europe's history in the previous century.