It's time to decide who's going to sit in the Polish parliament for the next four years and we're here to talk about the parties, people and issues in play. Get out there and vote! Or don't. You know, whatever...
If you weren't in Poland about 15 years ago, you might not know that Adam Małysz was mega-famous for being really good at jumping off mountains. When he wasn't doing that, he was appearing on every TV, billboard, magazine and newspaper in the country while promoting basically every product sold on the planet. Ok, slight exaggeration. Still, he was a big deal and in this episode of KrakCast Profiles we talk about the "Małyszomania" that ruled in Poland.
After complaining about the return of students to Krakow, we dive into the news, starting with a new runway at Krakow's airport, important news for people with mortgages in Swiss Francs, the death of Kornel Morawiecki, "Polish death camps" (NOT OUR WORDS!), the intensity of Polish mushroom season and Dave's hatred of mountain climbing.
We watched the 2014 film "Bogowie" ("Gods"), available now on Netflix and, um, "shareable" if you need subtitles. It's based on the true story of the first heart transplant in Poland and very much worth your time if you're looking to get into Polish cinema. Check out our review and discussion of the real-life events behind the story.
This week we start with some women who were fired (apparently) from their jobs with the Church in Krakow for being single mothers (maybe) before moving on to what to do with new land that has appeared under local railroad tracks, another plan to make electric scooters illegal, someone on the Krakow city council who obviously doesn't give a ****, Neckermann causes problems for Polish tourists, Tesco won't kill your carp this year and CELINE DION!!!
In the last of our profiles on politicians, we talk about the head of the Law & Justice Party (PiS), Jarosław Kaczyński. Whether you see him as the Darth Vader of Polish politics or the Obi-Wan Kenobi, you're sure to learn something from this KrakCast profile.
Traffic in Krakow is bad enough without hamsters blocking the construction of new roads but that's the situation we have now. This is where we start this week before moving on to more new trams in Krakow, surveys about what Poles are afraid of, where Krakow's hot water (and heating) comes from, PiS writes down all their exciting ideas in a manifesto (sarcasm), American Airlines apologizes for calling Poles alcoholics and Ikea shocks the nation by doubling the price of their hot dogs.
You see their faces all the time but how much do you really know about them? And why are these guys so special anyway? From the questionable color scheme of the 10zl note to the epic beard on the 50zl to the story of the guy on the 500zl (wait, has anyone ever actually seen one?), we go note by note and cover the basics of what you need to know about the people on Polish banknotes.
This week marks the 80th anniversary of the invasion of Poland by the USSR on September 17, 1939. Coming just sixteen days after the Nazis attacked from the West, the Soviet invasion was part of a secret agreement, the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact, in which Germany and Russia agreed to split Poland's territory before wiping it off the map of Europe. Listen to learn more about this fascinating but lesser-known chapter of the Second World War.
More huge promises of free money as we get closer to national elections next month is where we start in this week's KrakCast News. After that, we move on to money (but not much) for IVF treatments, trams return to Krakow's west side, the Plaza bar by Hotel Forum is disappearing (and why does Hotel Forum still exist?), an update on the Wisła Kraków-prison connection and "Marzena S", a gruesome crime gets closer to being solved and the parking "strefa" in Krakow gets even bigger.
The President of Poland since 2015, Andrzej Duda spends a lot of time traveling the world, welcoming foreign heads of state to Poland and taking lots and lots of selfies. In this KrakCast Profile, we look at the guy who probably has the best job in Polish politics.
Yes, Krakow's Most Wanted criminal might be ready turn herself in, but she has some conditions. That's our start this week before moving on to new laws about heating your home, an incredible birth at a Krakow hospital, MPK is offering 69 to everyone, a bizarre suicide in the Planty that we thought was a murder, huge bombs from WWII uncovered next to a bridge that we might have to blow up anyway, PO chooses a new and more attractive face, Morawiecki is Man of the Year at an event you've never heard of (and calls for reparations from the Germans?) and Lech Wałęsa (a new and different one but related to THAT one).
We've been critical of electric scooters because there's a lot to be critical of. But today's guest is here to talk about the big picture that we seem to be missing in the conversation about urban transport and "mobility". Marcin Kasz joins us to explain the huge money behind scooter deployments all over the world, the big players on the Krakow market and the incredible number of scooters planned for the very near future on streets all around you.
September 1st was the 80th anniversary of the attack on Polish forces at Westerplatte and the beginning of the Second World War. In this KrakCast Short History, we look at the circumstances surrounding this event and some of the important details of this important chapter in Polish, European and world history.
We've got a guest in the studio for the news this week and we start with the events related to the 80th anniversary of the start of WWII. From there, it's a really awkward transition to bread, too many events in Krakow's main square, higher tram ticket prices in Krakow lead a budget hole (?), more people paying taxes in Krakow leads to a budget surplus, government-funded in vitro treatments, even MORE cash for Krakow's sextuplets and a plan to make Krakow greener.
Few people in Poland will admit to being fans of McD's, so their 420+ locations here must be empty, right? Hardly. In this episode, we try to reconcile the hate for the Golden Arches with the fact that they all seem to be packed, all the time. Join us for this super-sized discussion that covers important issues like why nobody wants "good" food and the mysterious fate of the Big Tasty.
After covering "ZZ" in our previous KrakCast Profile, it's time for "MM", the PM of PL. Mateusz Morawiecki may not have the most exciting public persona but that's not one of the job requirements for Prime Minister (is it?). Listen to our profile of MM and learn about his interesting introduction to the world of Polish politics and how he worked, or maybe survived, his way to the top.
Is it a Tinder profile pic or a police "Wanted" poster? And wouldn't you buy drugs from her? Also, tragic news to talk about this week, with three stories of unfortunate deaths and injuries. After that, it's on to more positive things, like FOUR stories about idiot politicians.
Sweet or salty? Crunchy or chewy? Paprika or extra paprika? In this episode, we share our frustrations at the lack of choices when it comes to the kind of stuff we shouldn't be eating anyway. Is Prince Polo really that good? Is Polish chocolate even a thing? Of the billions of potato chip / crisp flavors out there, why does Poland only have four? From time to time we have to get some things off our collective chest and this is one of them.
If you didn't live in Krakow before 2014, you missed your chance to see the inside of the original train station when it was still, um, a train station. As you know, the building is still there today but the History Land we find there now is only the current chapter in a much longer history. Listen to this episode to learn the story of Kraków Główny railway station.