Dutch American Tag

Greg Shapiro Berlin MiniTour

Greg Shapiro Berlin MiniTour

Greg Shapiro Teams Up with Ken Parsons for Berlin Mini-Tour Oct. 2023

27 sept., 2023

UNSUNG HEROES: Comedy veterans Greg Shapiro and Ken Parsons team up to tell stories of their early days. Ken Parsons was busking in Berlin in the days of 1989. Greg Shapiro was one of the originals at Boom Chicago theater in Amsterdam. Together they perform a mini-tour of Berlin.

poster design by the excellent Emily Higginson


Comedians Ken Parsons & Greg Shapiro:

Both were born in ‘68, the year of tumultuous change and revolt.
Both left their native lands to seek their fortunes abroad.
Both have stuck to their guns and have watched the projects they helped kick-start flourish.

Greg achieved critical acclaim with his voice of Trump in the viral video ‘Netherlands Second’.  Ken set up a series of autonomous comedy stages which soon became renowned and have featured international acts, prompting Time to dub him ‘The Maestro of the Underground’.

Be a hero, too and try and catch them! All of the shows will be great but the Finale of the Tour at the brilliant Cosmic Comedy Club will be the one to head to if you want to see the show in its longest form!
Geil, ey!  Toppie, hoor!

 

Greg Shapiro and Ken Parsons: The ‘Unsung Heroes’ Berlin 29 Sept – 3 Oct  

29/09 The Wall Comedy, Friedrichshain

30/09 The Wall Comedy, Friedrichshain

01/10 East West Comedy, (open mic try out) Kreuz-Kölln

02/10 Karakas Bar, Mitte

03/10 Cosmic Comedy, Mitte

 

BIOGRAPHY GREG SHAPIRO
Greg Shapiro: Comedian, American, Dutchman. (And the voice of the ‘Netherlands Second’ video with imitators like Neo Magasin Royal). Shapiro was the host of Comedy Central News: “because Dutch news is news too.” His voice has appeared on ZDF’s Heute Show. And he helped establish the Amsterdam comedy theater Boom Chicago, helping launch the careers of alumni like Seth Meyers, Jordan Peele and the creators of Ted Lasso.

With Boom Chicago, Shapiro performed shows in memorable settings. He performed a show on 9/11. He has performed for the King of the Netherlands, French President François Hollande, and NATO. He has also performed on moving buses, student living rooms, and once in the Business Class section of a KLM 747 flying to Chicago. Shapiro’s latest standup special is Greg Shapiro Saves the Climate: 60 Minutes of Climate Good News.

BIOGRAPHY KEN PARSONS
The Wall Years

Ken comes from Plymouth but together with his friend Chris Stevens they formed a band called Who’s Rachel?

Ken- as if in an ETA Hoffmann tale- went on to study German and was assistant teacher at the Robert Koch school in Kreuzberg, aptly enough in Berlin’s ‘Grimm Kiez’.   Ken wrote a thesis on folklore and the style of his stories can be called ‘punk parables’ or ‘urban fairy tales.’

 

Boom Chicago Book Review

Rave Reviews BoomChicago Book

Rave Reviews for the Boom Chicago 30th Anniversary Book

27 October, 2023

In July 2023, Boom Chicago celebrated its 30th anniversary with an oral history of our origin story. I’m proud to have been a contributor.

Boom Chicago Book Review

The Book (on Amazon) :
Boom Chicago Presents the 30 Most Important Years in Dutch History

Here are some rave reviews:

VULTURE.COM – The Best Comedy Books of 2023 (So Far)
by Brian Boonewho writes about comedy

“As far as generationally significant, tone-setting, comedian-developing institutions go, Second City and Upright Citizens Brigade, and their many affiliates, get almost all the attention and credit. But there’s a third, and until now, largely unheralded player, and that’s Boom Chicago. Many of today’s most thoughtful, emotionally and politically driven comedians honed their chops at Boom Chicago, an American theatrical and improvisational comedy troupe that primarily operates in Amsterdam. Jordan Peele, Seth Meyers, and Amber Ruffin are all veterans, and it’s where Brendan Hunt and Jason Sudeikis met and first worked together. Ted Lasso wouldn’t have happened without the frenetic, patient, performer-driven lab-like atmosphere of Boom Chicago. The mock-self-aggrandizing of the subtitle — The 30 Most Important Years in Dutch History — belies how Boom Chicago just is that important to 21st-century comedy. The baby-faced photos of current legends are fun, but the book’s tone of fascination and how the sausage is made provides a compelling account of how improv is crafted, and how Boom Chicago’s approach informed so much of its participants’ later work.”

https://www.vulture.com/article/boom-chicago-amsterdam-history.html

BOOK AND FILM GLOBE
– Jack Helbig

“Large swatches of the book look and read like an oral history, in which prominent and not so prominent BookChicago alums prattle on, reminiscing  about moments in BoomChicago’s rise from a ragtag group of improv comedians performing in 1993 in the back of dive bar to hothouse for creating future celebrities to a bone fide part of Dutch comedy world. As oral histories go, it’s not bad stuff.”

https://bookandfilmglobe.com/uncategorized/the-most-important-30-years-in-dutch-history-boomchicago/


Arts Talk Magazine
Michael Hasted 

“when it comes to comedy in Holland, Boom Chicago is a winner.”
“fascinating stuff”
“Much of the book takes the form of conversations between Boom stalwarts and this unusual format works brilliantly,”

“a must-have for Boom fans and, indeed, those interested in comedy in general.” It says a lot about Amsterdam that for thirty years it has sustained, nay, gloried in and cherished an English speaking comedy venue. I don’t know about New York and Chicago but there has only been The Comedy Store in London that exceeds the longevity that Boom Chicago has enjoyed in the Dutch city. …when it comes to comedy in Holland, Boom Chicago is a winner.

..this book is, inevitably, a stroll down memory lane. And fascinating stuff it is too. In the lengthy introduction by founders Andrew Moskos and Pep Rosenfeld we learn how Boom Chicago was born and how, against the odds, it survived and grew to maturity.

Much of the book takes the form of conversations between Boom stalwarts and this unusual format works brilliantly, being much more personal and illuminating than a straightforward narrative. So, there are contributions from all the usual suspects, most of whom will be familiar to fans of Boom. To jog their memory there is a list of alumni from 1993 to 2023 which, according to a quick count is in excess of one hundred and thirty.

Boom Chicago presents The 30 Most Important Years in Dutch History is clearly a must-have for Boom fans and, indeed, those interested in comedy in general.”

https://artstalkmagazine.nl/boom-chicago-presents-the-30-most-important-years-in-dutch-history/

Click here for reviews of Boom Chicago shows feat. Greg Shapiro
https://gregshapiro.nl/media/theater-reviews-for-greg-shapiros-latest-shows/

Click here for Greg Shapiro’s latest book: 
https://gregshapiro.nl/greg-shapiros-new-book/

Shapiro Hosts Kipster Event

Shapiro Hosts Kipster Event

18 sept., 2023
Hooray! I hosted another green event, this time for a sustainable chicken farm called Kipster. 
Kipster (not Kipsta) started with 2 Dutch chicken farms, creating the world’s first carbon neutral eggs. Now this Dutch business is expanding into the US, and to host their launch event, they called me: The American Netherlander. The event took place in North Manchester, Indiana (23 Aug). And Queen Maxima even taped a video message.

 

To prepare, I met with one of the founders Olivier Wegloop, who is a vegan and animal rights activist. Here he is in the blue shirt behind me (gawd it was hot in that tent…)


Olivier believes in the writings of animal rights activists like Temple Grandin, who said: “nature is cruel, but we don’t have to be. If we are raising animals to be eaten, at least we can treat them with some respect.“ (and then we got to interview Grandin… see below) Since chickens are traditionally forest animals, Kipster has created – not only a cage-free environment, but – a fun forest.

As you can see, they still lay plenty of eggs.

Another Kipster founder is Ruud Zanders, who explained the main reason their chickens are carbon neutral: they feed the chickens food waste.

Every year A) humanity grows enough food to feed 4 billion people – and then we give it to livestock, B) of all the food we produce, we waste about 33%. Kipster simply asks: “Why not feed the chickens food waste?” The motto of Kipster is “Crops should be about Food not Feed.” This ground-breaking strategy is actually thousands of years old. But …

KIPSTER’S REVOLUTIONARY TWIST

The revolutionary part of Kipster is: Roosters for Meat.

Since male chickens don’t lay eggs – and they’re considered too gamey to eat – the normal practice on chicken farms is to kill baby male chicks they day they hatch. (The waste product is hopefully repurposed into things like pet food.) But Kipster asks “what if we let the roosters grow to maturity (and then we eat them)? How gamey are they really?”

To end the event, Kipster served up the first-ever rooster meatballs. I met with Managing Director Sandra Vijn to try one. And I thought it the texture was perfect. The tray of ‘Boom Boom’ rooster balls was not finished at closing time, and I was afraid it might become food waste… but I suppose the rooster meat was fed to the hens. What better way to say ‘Death to the Patriarchy’ -?

Thanks to Olivier Wegloop for putting this event together. He was the one who arranged an interview with Dr Temple Grandin – via Livestream. Dr. Grandin is famously autistic, and she demanded to see all the questions in advance. Then – as soon as Olivier asked his first question – she just went on a rant about sustainable farming and animal behavior and didn’t stop. She’s a legend!


Thank you to Olivier & Sandra for inviting me. Thank you to the Dutch Consulate of Chicago for putting us in touch (years ago). And thank you to Markey’s Event Services who created the backbone for an extremely professional show – including full build and build-down in extreme heat. And they made it look easy.

For more about Kipster in English: 
https://www.kipster.farm/

More Green-themed events hosted by Greg Shapiro:
https://gregshapiro.nl/blog/shapiro-hosts-sustainable-train-launch/

Greg’s new Green standup special GREG SHAPIRO SAVES THE CLIMATE
https://gregshapiro.nl/blog/greg-shapiro-saves-the-climate/

 

Shapiro Boom Chicago Tales

SHAPIRO BOOM CHICAGO TALES

SHAPIRO BOOM CHICAGO TALES

12 Sept., 2023
In its first 30 years, Boom Chicago Comedy Theater started the careers of Seth Meyers, Jordan Peele, the Ted Lasso creators – and me. Now it’s time to share some classic tales from their Origin Stories. Time for Shapiro Boom Chicago Tales!

I came to Amsterdam to work with the Boom Chicago comedy theater for just one summer – and 30 years later, I’m still here. Along the way, I’ve worked alongside so many now-famous folks, playing improv comedy – where the Golden Rule is Make your partner look good onstage. “Make your partner look good!” And looking at their careers – versus mine – I think I did my job extremely well.

BOOM CHICAGO TALES FROM THE ARCHIVES

In this video series, I share some backstage stories – from 1 person you might have heard of and 1 person you might not have.
This episode: Jordan Peele & Dave Buckman.

You might know Jordan Peele for winning an Oscar for his film Get Out in 2017. But back in 2001, he started playing comedy with us in Amsterdam.

As Jordan writes in the Boom Chicago book: “The biggest laughs I’ve ever been part of, or seen, were at Boom Chicago. Going to Amsterdam actually gave me more experience as a writer and a performer and as a human being than I would’ve gotten anywhere else—and with no better people.”

Unfortunately – according to Jordan – these days he says he can’t remember a lot of specifics from back then, because he smoked a lot of weed. From my book, I wrote: “Jordan smoked so much weed he was like Cinderella: at midnight he’d transform after 12 bongs.”

Jordan smoking weed was the inspiration for a classic character bit. In the days after 9/11, performing comedy was hard. One of the first jokes we dared making on the subject was Jordan Peele and Dave Buckman portraying al Qaeda spokesmen in Afghanistan – as stoners like Cheech & Chong. Their act even made the news as the first comedians to joke about 9/11. And Jordan smoking weed was the inspiration.

Like the video? I’ll make more…

Meanwhile, here’s a link to the Boom Chicago book:
https://boomchicago.nl/nl/book2/

Here’s a link to my book THE AMERICAN NETHERLANDER: 25 Years of Expat Tales:

https://hollandbooks.nl/product/the-american-netherlander/

And here’s a link to my previous shows, incl. Boom Chicago!
https://gregshapiro.nl/greg-shapiro-web-archive/

 

The Seven Wonders of the Dutch World

Seven Wonders of the Dutch World

Greg Shapiro Guest Column: THE SEVEN WONDERS OF THE DUTCH WORLD

8 Aug. 2023

As seen in the 2023 edition of Corporate Housing Factory Special:

 

The Seven Wonders of the Dutch World

India has the Taj Mahal, Rome has the Colosseum, and the Netherlands has: The Entire Country. Well, at least the 26% that was created by the Dutch people. First, there was the sea – and the Dutch said “Let there be land.”

…Why isn’t the Netherlands included in the Seven Wonders of the World? Maybe it’s because – as much as Dutch people like digging – they dislike bragging. Or, in Dutch: ’Scheppen goed; opscheppen niet goed.

Here are seven Dutch marvels of engineering that I think deserve more credit.

1. Schiphol Airport. Every time your plane lands at Schiphol, just imagine the conversation going on in the cockpit: “Schiphol Tower, we are descending to ZERO meters above sea level. That must be the runway, right?” Wrong. The average runway at Schiphol Airport is three meters below sea level.

2. The Amsterdam Canals. Historically, Dutch people have treated their natural habitat as something like a Lego base plate. This is why so much of the Dutch landscape looks like it was made out of Legos: Straight piece here, straight piece there. The time when Dutch people could finally afford curving pieces? They’re still talking about it.

3. Zevenbergen. Nearby the lowest point in the Netherlands. Zevenbergen translates to ‘Seven Mountains.’ Its highest point? Two meters below sea level.

4. The Maeslantkering. The Port of Rotterdam is protected by this massive storm surge barrier, and each one of these two sea gates is about as long as the Eiffel Tower in Paris. Yet in Paris, if you want an Eiffel Tower t-shirt from the tourist shops, you can find one easily. But in the Netherlands, can you find a Maeslantkering t-shirt anywhere? NO. Instead, what do most Dutch tourist shops feature on their t-shirts? The marijuana leaf. Why doesn’t the Maeslantkering get more credit? Somebody must be smoking something.

Next up:

5. Flevoland

6. Amsterdam Central Station Bike Garage

7. Afsluitdijk / Deltaworks

Want to read about 5/6/7? Click here:
https://issuu.com/zuidaspublishers/docs/chf_magazine_2023

Read my book about how the Netherlands Deserves More Credit
https://gregshapiro.nl/greg-shapiros-new-book/

 

Shapiro at ‘4 More Years’ Event

Greg Shapiro Helps Celebrate ‘4 More Years’ of Castro Communicatie, May 2023

31 July, 2023

How do you celebrate your 4th anniversary as a Dutch political consultancy? With a political-themed party called “Four More Years!” Dutch communication and lobbying agency Castro Communicatie hired me to help them celebrate their fourth birthday, at The Loft in the A’dam Tower Amsterdam.

Shapiro '4 More Years' Event

Stefan de Bruijn, Greg Shapiro, Frits Huffnagel

I asked if “Four More Years” might seem too partisan for their clientele? But of course – in the upcoming 2024 US election – the term “Four More Years” could apply to two different candidates: Biden and Trump. So “Four More Years” it was! They wanted an event with all the hype and hollering of American campaign – but with a Dutch twist. Who better to help them than The American Netherlander?

https://www.linkedin.com/posts/castrocommunicatie_castro-four-more-years-activity-7064245462496665600-upym?utm_source=share&utm_medium=member_desktop

 

Castro Communicatie’s American Roots

Castro Communicatie gets its name from the Castro district in San Francisco, the historic gay capital of the US. The two business partners (who also have male life partners) are Stefan de Bruijn and Frits Huffnagel. (aka S+F for SF: San Francisco). And they base their political consulting on the American model, so a connection to the USA seemed a perfect fit. (And then of course there’s Fidel Castro, who was famous for giving political speeches lasting for hours – which Frits and Stefan try to avoid.)

My job was to host the video presentations – and give a 20-minute keynote speech about the 4-year history of Castro Communicatie and the unique appeal of their Dutch-American style. In English, of course. Were there some older folks who didn’t like standing? Yes. Was there a MAGA hat or two? Yes. And was there one tired guy right up front? Also yes. Luckily, I’ve been trained to focus on people who are laughing, and that was most of them.

After my bit, Frits announced a new partnership with Castro Communicatie and event organizer New Balls Please. https://www.newballsplease.amsterdam/

They did a great job organizing this event – with real popcorn!
And I got to meet the DJ, who is also a former client and currently the mayor of Halderberge in Brabant: Bernd ROKS!

Congrats Castro Communicatie! We wish you a happy 4 more years.

Greg Shapiro Linkedin
https://www.linkedin.com/in/greg-shapiro-b030392/

Greg Shapiro Corporate Events

Corporate Events

 

Boom Chicago Book Review

Boom Chicago Book Review

Book Release Today! The first Boom Chicago book review is in: “30 years in the history of a comedy club in a way that totally defies expectation.”

4 July, 2023

As a contributor to this book, I can say I’m very happy with the way it came out. And here’s a review that agrees with me. Reviewer Jack Helbig wrote about Boom Chicago years ago in The Chicago Reader in the theater’s early days. And here he is reviewing the book Boom Chicago Presents the 30 Most Important Years in Dutch History. Helbig writes: “It is at once a book hard to put down, and hard to read straight through from start to finish.  (I did a lot of skimming; you will, too.)”

Jack, you have no idea. This book first appeared with a Dutch publisher in 2018 for the 25th anniversary, and it was even more of a mismatched patchwork. This new version is totally revised, by author Matt Diehl. He went to great lengths to create a readable oral history of Boom Chicago’s first 30 years.

Helbig: “Large swatches of the book look and read like an oral history, in which prominent and not so prominent BookChicago alums prattle on, reminiscing  about moments in BoomChicago’s rise from a ragtag group of improv comedians performing in 1993 in the back of dive bar to hothouse for creating future celebrities to a bone fide part of Dutch comedy world. As oral histories go, it’s not bad stuff.”

I’m glad he remembered to mention the “not so prominent.” I feel included. Indeed, I was a contributor to this book, along with Rob Andristplourde. Since we both arrived at Boom Chicago in the early days, we were there for many signature Boom Chicago events. Hence, Yes we took part in the interviews. And we contributed the ‘Meet the Cast’ section, full of anecdotes about all the “prominent” as well as “not so prominent” alumni.

Here’s a link to the review:

https://bookandfilmglobe.com/uncategorized/the-most-important-30-years-in-dutch-history-boomchicago/

Buy the book here:
https://boomchicago.nl/search/book/

 

Join us in Amsterdam for the book launch at American Book Center 11 July 15.00 –
https://abc.nl/events/event-details/book-launch/3190

And I also talk about some Boom alumni in my book The American Netherlander: 25 Years of Expat Tales.
https://gregshapiro.nl/greg-shapiros-new-book/

Boom Chicago 30th in NYT, Seth Meyers Greg Shapiro

Boom Chicago 30th in NYT

Boom Chicago 30th in NYT

3 July, 2023

As I like to say in my show, yes I have worked at Boom Chicago alongside many talented people – some of whom have found huge success in the US. Seth Meyers started his career in Amsterdam in 1997, Jason Sudeikis played at Boom in 2000, and Jordan Peele started his career at Boom Chicago in 2001. Together we played improv comedy, where it’s all about teamwork, and the Golden Rule is “make your partner look good.” …I think I did my job maybe too well.

This week, Boom Chicago celebrates 30 years with a whole weekend of shows at the Boom Chicago Comedy Festival.
https://boomchicago.nl/boom-chicago-comedy-festival-2023/

And we even got a write-up in the New York Times :

https://www.nytimes.com/2023/06/19/arts/amsterdam-boom-chicago-comedy-club.html?smid=nytcore-ios-share&referringSource=articleShare

Here are some excerpts from the NYT:

This Little Amsterdam Improv Club Launched Big American Careers

By Nina Siegal
June 19, 2023

Seth Meyers had no idea what to expect when he got a job in 1997 performing at a fledgling comedy club in Amsterdam called Boom Chicago. He was in his early 20s, and had never traveled outside of the United States. He had to apply for a passport.

“I knew not one thing about the Netherlands,” he said in a recent interview. “My first thought was to get some good hiking shoes, I guess because I thought I was going to Switzerland. And then I showed up in literally the flattest place I ever lived.”

On the occasion of the company’s 30th anniversary, its current cast and famous alumni — including Meyers, the “Ted Lasso” co-creator Brendan Hunt and the comedian Amber Ruffin — are celebrating by staging a two week festival in Amsterdam next month. They’re also releasing a book, “Boom Chicago Presents: The 30 Most Important Years in Dutch History.”

“We got to be onstage four or five nights a week, and that was never happening for us in Chicago,” Meyers said, “Also, we got to be in Amsterdam in our early 20s, and surrounded by all these other talented people. It felt like a time of ascension, not just for me but for everyone around me. It felt like a really special thing we were doing.”

Seth, I totally agree.

FYI – the NYT article is by Amsterdam’s own Dutch-American author Nina Siegal. Her book The Diary Keepers is amazing:
The Diary Keepers 

For the Record here was the first time Boom Chicago was in the New York Times (here in the NYT Int’l edition), in 2003:

And I also write about Seth Meyers’ early Amsterdam days in my book The American Netherlander:
https://gregshapiro.nl/greg-shapiros-new-book/

GREG SHAPIRO RARE VIDEO

GREG SHAPIRO RARE VIDEO

29 June, 2023

GREG SHAPIRO RARE VIDEO

In 2001, I starred in a short film about a serial killer / hamburger entrepreneur: THE AMERICAN BICKMAN BURGER. Fellow Boom Chicago performer Brendan Hunt co-starred in the film, and his devil makeup and prosthetic horns are legend! I mean they are worthy of Tim Curry in the film Legend. (Whereas my old-age makeup makes me look like Tim Curry’s butt.)
Nowadays you may know Brendan Hunt as Coach Beard from the Emmy Award winning TV series Ted Lasso. Here you can see some of the same dance moves Brendan now uses on AppleTV.

The writer / director of The American Bickman burger was Michael John Fedun, from Dutch Netwerk6 Productions. And who portrayed one of the dead bodies in the meat locker? It was future Dutch film director Tim Oliehoek. [Note: back in 2000, my professional name was Greg Shore. I’m still working to update all those old credits.]

 

Plot summary:

The life story of an American legend, Bickman Pike. Bickman kills his parents, grows into a serial killer, and turns the dead bodies into hamburgers. Not to be outdone, Bickman’s son reveals that he is Satan and unleashes his evil creation on the world: disco music.

Here is a link to the 4-minute acting demo:

And here is a link to the entire short film, thanks to casting director and featured player Chip Bray of International Native Casting:

From the Netherlands Film Commission:

“In eighteen minutes, the fictional documentary The American Bickman Burger by Michael John Fedun makes mincemeat of the ideal of ‘The American Dream’. In ineluctable images, the film tells the success story of Bickman Pike, who sets up a fast-growing chain of hamburger restaurants in the 1950s.”

From IMDB:

“In a world where killing is legal and traffic violations are punishable by life in prison. A serial killer named Bickman Pike frantically chases after his life long dream to marry and have children. Along the way he creates the worlds largest fast food chain. Its success made possible by Bickman’s victims being ground up into addictive hamburger patties. The world stands in awe of the Bickman phenomenon while reporter Walter Fufckin and his cameraman Barney Wright struggle to bring the world a proper representation of the facts. Bickman finally marries a Las Vegas dancer named Mimi Marigold, almost immediately their son Peter Pike is unleashed upon the world. Like his father before him, Peter attempts to make his own dream a reality. Not even the hand of God is able to put a stop to Peter Pike’s agonizing master plan.”

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0275914/?ref_=ttpl_ov

GREG SHAPIRO RARE VIDEO

For more Greg Shapiro as Actor / Voiceover, click here:
https://gregshapiro.nl/greg-shapiro-actor-voiceover/

Shapiro Hosts Sustainable Train Launch

Shapiro Hosts Sustainable Train Launch

Shapiro Hosts Sustainable Train Launch

28 June, 2023

Looks like my Climate Good News series is paying off! Again I got the call to host an event with the theme of Sustainability: the launch of the new European Sleeper train from Brussels to Berlin.

photo credit: Alvin Williams JMT Mgmt & Events

Link: ‘Night Train Startup European Sleeper’

Background: Two Dutch entrepreneurs (and train nerds) created a startup company to offer more overnight train service throughout Europe. And – after years of crowd-funding and organizing – the day of the maiden voyage had arrived! While the two founders were focused on preparing the photo moment of the train departing… the event organizer told them they really should consider a professional host for the launch event.

I was told that the two founders were nervous and rather serious. So – as soon as I met them, I said “I hear you two are entrepreneurs… but I assume you’re primarily train nerds?” And I asked if I could take a selfie with them. Here’s what we got:

I could tell this was going to be fun.

The launch event was held in the Pullman Hotel. Hence, my intro wrote itself: “The Pullman Hotel refers, I assume, to George Mortimer Pullman – the inventor of the first railroad sleeping car. And where did George Pullman set up his business? Chicago, Illinois – which is where I’m from. …Hence, my entire life has been leading up to this moment!”

THE GOODNIGHT TRAIN

I had to ask a question of the two founders. “Everyone knows there’s a term for having sex on a plane: ‘The Mile-High Club.’ So why is there no term for having sex on a train?” And I was quickly corrected by founder Chris Engelsman, with a perfect deadpan delivery: “There is a term, actually. It’s called ‘The Mile-Long Club.’”

The event ended with the Belgian transport minister taking the stage and announcing the news: the Belgian parliament had voted to grant a subsidy to The European Sleeper and their Goodnight Train. Hey, I was already thrilled to hear that Belgium had a functioning government.

The train arrived on time and departed on time, with many happy first-time passengers.

And look at serious entrepreneur Chris Engelsman as the European Sleeper train arrives in the station.

 

The Goodnight Train is now running regularly from Brussels to Amsterdam to Berlin.
https://www.europeansleeper.eu/en
Next up, they plan to extend service to Prague. Soon, there will be a new service from Brussels to Barcelona. It’s like playing real-life game of Ticket to Ride!

Thanks to the excellent Alvin Williams at JMT Management for organizing a memorable event. Extra thanks for all the photos.

Read more about GREG SHAPIRO SAVES THE CLIMATE: 60 Minutes of Climate Good News
https://gregshapiro.nl/blog/greg-shapiro-saves-the-climate/