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No windows In Amsterdam
by Vera Izrailit

Last summer I was in Amsterdam with my friend Joanna. One day she put on a t-shirt that said "No Windows, no problems", which she had bought at some Linux event, and we went out for a walk.

As we were crossing a street, a bus driver saw us (or rather the t-shirt) and became very agitated, gesticulating wildly, screaming "no windows, no problems, no windows, no problems!" and opening and closing the blinds on his own window. We figured that the driver read the anti-Windows message and saw the light, and continued out walk while speculating on what MS had done to that poor man.

Only when we reached the red light district and people started coming up to us and telling us that we were wrong and that the prostitutes sitting behind their windows have chosen to be prostitutes, and that their work conditions are not all that bad, etc., we figured out that the anti-windows text on the t-shirt was being widely misunderstood as an anti-prostitution message.

Every time when some unsuspecting soul came up to us to discuss the merits of the Dutch approach to prostitution, Joanna treated him (and occasionally her) to a lecture about the evils of MS Windows and the virtues of Linux. The poor people did not know how to get away from her.

She would have probably managed to either convert all the red light district or scare away all the Windows-using customers, but I dragged her away with the promises of La Trappe Dubbel in a little bar on a side street.


This page was last updated April 21, 2000.

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