Monday, March 31, 2008
and just as I was about ready to sponge up this man's pain and the injustice of the War on Terror when they threw a car commercial at me, video stalled -I refreshed and they threy a cleaning product commercial at me,- then I re started and there was a spaghetti sauce spot. well, who is the sucker here? ok, I appreciate the free-ness of this internet video- and I appreciate also that none of these products are available to me... but I still can't get the video to start...
EMBEDDED VIDEO REMOVED CLICK FOR LINK
also, in other American mainstream media ripping: NYTIMES essay "It’s Not You, It’s Your Books" by By RACHEL DONADIO reminded me that the Wildfang said she "hadn't had time to read since finishing University" (3 or 4 years now) and when I was reading Michael Crichton and John Grisham in 7th grade she was reading Garfield... books... cartoons... so it is good perhaps that things came to an end. Or my dear sweet sister who doesn't own a book, I'm not going to hate on her for that. Afterall, I have no room to be a snob, in the big picture I know very little about literature- I mean, I definitely can't talk about it- and what am I reading now? I am positively wallowing in the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, -still! I tried reading more important things, but end-up put them down halfway through- apparently I just want to be lost in the universe at the moment...
In 1975 Noah quit deep sea botany and marine study altogether for the more lucrative life of real estate. Financially, this was a brilliant move on his part- after all, who could've predicted the housing market of his mid-sized American city would undergo seven booms and only four small busts in the next thirty years? In those thirty years Noah acquired not one, not two, but 15 charming older mansions which he then converted into apartment buildings immediately after purchase.
Noah, having been a hippie-turned-scientist-turned-capitalist-turned-eccentric-old-
hippie-capitalist during that timespan was nevertheless still a hard worker. When he finally had all the buildings he wanted and all the gears set in-motion he then chose a particularly choice vacant apartment just below ours to live in with his gray-haired hippie-capitalist-partner-wife (of an indeterminate number of years). They lived happily while raking-in the dough from the rent on all the buildings and worked persistently on many a varied project. The actual purpose of these projects, however, as well the actual quality of the intended outcome was completely in the eye of the beholder. If you weren't expecting much then you could say they did an excellent job. Personally, what I saw of his renovations seemed to me like he had cut a few corners and sacrificed quality workmanship for “looks good enough for now” aesthetics.
Because of his early years of heavy drug use Noah had become somewhat of a moody eccentric in his older age. I never could tell exactly, but I assumed he was nearing age 60 when I moved in. Upon first glance he appeared to have popped right off the pages of a children's fairytale book, (Rumpelstiltskin perhaps) with his small skinny body, sharp facial features, little round glasses and long stringy shoulder-length gray hair. This look was enhanced by the 6-inch (now white) fu-manchu he sported and the oddly colored vests and short pants he often wore, mostly splattered with paint and in desperate need a wash.
Other than home repairs it was difficult to say what actually went on in Noah's life. His elementary-aged grandchildren came to visit often enough, but I also recall him mentioning offhand that he was not on speaking terms with his son...
When Noah ran out of projects to do (and this began happening as soon as he'd hired enough competent live-in managers for each of his apartment buildings) he began smoking pot again vigorously in the tiny but traditional Henkai house he'd spent tens-of-thousands of dollars to import Bali specifically for “meditation.” Hardly a day went by when we wouldn't look down into the steep wooded backyard while waiting for morning coffee to percolate and see him puffing away calmly on his un-discrete waterpipe, dew still on the ground and bright sun squinting his eyes.
In this time Noah also took up painting, and his works of “art” as he called them were also of highly questionable quality or relevance (mostly due to the fact that he hadn't picked up a brush since the 8th grade and was always using leftover pastel tones of house paint in his violently sloppy work) which he'd admitted, had mostly been created when he was “stoned out-of-his-gourd.”
After three months of this I had pretty-much arrived at the conclusion that Noah was losing it. One sunny Sunday afternoon in late July I bumped into him while collecting my laundry in the labyrinthine basement and was coerced into going into his new “painting studio” (which was actually just a gutted basement-level apartment.) After it had been vacated recently he decided that it would serve his needs better if he just spent late nights sloshing syrupy old pastel wallpaint around than take the time to, once again renovate it for new tenants who would be forking-over $1,700 a month towards his further delinquency. All along the walls lining the inside of the studio were “new age” theory books intermingled with large seashells, pine-cones from every national park in the country, and mason jars full of very dead paintbrushes. Most of the books, he admitted, had been purchased based on the interviews he'd heard with their authors at 3am on the Art Bell radio program, a show known for its conspiracy-theorist guests and their unshakable faith in their own apocalyptic and catastrophic ideas. It was from one of these books by a Professor A. Fischbein that Noah got the idea to build another ark.
“The floods will come again,” said Fischbein “mark my words! The status quo for weather regularity will not hold!” was one of the quotes I came across while doing a bit of research on him myself.
Noah never actually told any of the buildings tenants that he was building an ark, but the following Saturday when he began rota-tilling the wilderness of the backyard we became suspicious.
“Just gonna build a deck here” I overheard him say on a break, sweating while the nice gay couple downstairs handed him a freshly made Mimosa “Oh wonderful!” said the Strawberry-blonde drink-maker, who was often seen shamelessly sunbathing in a very tiny pair of men's bikini-style underwear down out front of the tiny porch of the Balinese house in a suped-up lawnchair. A deck would definitely do him some good, maybe even clear out some of those pesky old-growth branches blocking the sun from above...
TO READ FURTHER CLICK HERE. (originally had the whole story posted but it was just to damn long.)
Post Subtitled: Natassja Kinski
Went on a mission for NK to le shiteothéque I could call "Video World" in search (at least one) of the following:
A. One Night Stand
C. Your Friends & Neighbours
nope nope nope They had none of them. the search computer is really slow and times-out. I wrote down every damn film featuring Ms. Kinski available in the entire store- the LEAST crappy seemed to be "the Claim", which was most tolerable because it seemed to be like "McCabe & Mrs. Miller" which is a creak kind of film for setting and time period... usually. ok. sucker for that cold California mountain outlaw/immigrant-in-the-1800's thing...
Post Subtitled: Clearly I need more 70's rock in my life.
Sure everything is out there somewhere on the interweb, but: How do you find a song if you have no idea what the chorus or lyrics or band are? Google can't read my mind yet, so I was kind of impresed that it only took me 3 days to find E.L.O's "Evil woman" (which was only one Google search away- sooo... actually, it just took me three days to decide to try to find something on Google to which I could attach no correct words except "song" and "woman")
This would've normally been a non-issue and I could've slept soundly and not let it eat away at me- except for the realisation that, well, I had actually never understood what the band said in the chorus... Alicia had always believed to be "Illegal woman", I had always believed to be "Medieval woman" and Mithridates had suggested might be "Witchy Woman" by the Eagles- anyhow, long story short I was actually able to find the song by way of a parody by a guy named Tim Mayfield which was (coincidentally) called "Medieval Woman" which is STILL what I hear no matter how many times I listen:
The other interesting things is that I have encountered this song a LOT lately, both in the Czech Republic and then again last Saturday at West Germany. The stupid thing is that for years I thoght it was a Perry Farrell song, because he covers it on a Jane's Addiction/Porno for Pyros Best of compilation. Dumb teenager. not sure which is better, the music video (here) or the live version (below)
also reoccuring, T. Rex:
in other news, U2 and Bruce Springsteen are also very alive and well in Czech. Good to know.
Sunday, March 30, 2008
live March 29, Kuschlowski, Berlin
Saturday, March 29, 2008
NOTE this post was riddled with spelling errors earlier, is now a bit better, sorry.
Awoke and recovered from dehydration, did strechtes, got splinters adn found even yet more broken glass on the bedroom floor but was in ok-enough shape just in time to be out the door for a soggy 9am jog through Volkspark Hasenheide. Insert a piece of last week's run: ran into a very noble red squirrel with batman-like ear pointies munching or pouch-packing something, some nut or sprout, I talked near breathlessly out-loud to him/her: "HEy- _Are__n't YOU___ GREAT- _- GREAt Creature! M__MY God_ Wow__Woa. COOL__ HI!" Fast-forward to today, no animals, (err- no noble animals) but in the approximate squirrel meeting spot I was now able to transplant a sapling which was growing in the middle of the brick path. Granted- it isn't an oft-traffic-ed path, but still, it would've had its little stalk-neck broken in a matter of hours or days.
On park People: Same predictable unfriendliness, same Grouchland game. Honestly, of the 30+ people I passed on the paths this morning there was just one guy who (not only) aknowledged my presence (but gave me a huge smile and exaggerated "guten morgen" nod) -and he was probably Ethopian, not not not German. All the Germans I passed (some multiple times) just gave the snarl of non-aknowledgement or the lookglare of "you've got squirrell-poo / babyfood / all over your face, why are you being friendly to me young man-?" the scowling look of ____.
Sweat-y walk back to BÄCK FACTORY (cheap excuse for a bakery which operates like a factory) for brötchen and coffee -(I know it is tasteless and shitty.) Along the way I have a sort of gangster standoff moment with that American §&$%head that I hate. I will just call him the - well, let's just call him Paco. Paco the wannabe homeless rap-artist American §&$%head does this: every day he hangs out in the Kottbusser Tor U-Bahn station drinking, smoking, probably doing drugs and harassing everyone. He is loud with his incessant rap-freestyle-shout-ranting, in obvious arrogant AMerican english with an occasional touch of bad German- insulting passing foot traffic, always. He sports a greasy thick ponytail which always snakes its way out from beneath the back of a sort of gnarly fedora he wears- scraggly facial hair, cheap half-drunk (drank) beer in one hand, rolled cigarette in the other and he just shouts eother nonsense or gangster wannabe bullshit.
A few weeks ago I got on the u-bahn with a bunch of papers from work, proofreading along the eay and the first things I hear is "Hey, Bigfoot" as he breathes beerbreath on me, stumbles by and swaggers on to the other end of the train to knock elbows with some local wannabe hip-hop guys. Before the one-stop ride was over he was hooting and hollering and being the same awful American §&$%head he usualy is IN the station, except now we are all stuck in the train with him, ac captive audience-
ANYHOW, this guy has been at Kotbusser Tor for 3 or 4 months now, and I hate him. So when we passed earlier today on Schönleinstraße it was slow-mo, and I glared, adn he glarted for a goot 25 feet as we passed each other, and he gave me the once up and down. He looks comfortable today wearing some goofy football trainer pants and a Berlin tourust sweater as he struggles to coordinate walking and rolling a cigarette at the same time, he glares at my jogging outfit- Oxford hoodie and brandless sweats. and I just glared, ideally with a look which said "I know you. I know your routine. I do not approve of your existence. You are an embassasment to me as an American overseas and I want to quietly rough you up to let you know this because there is no other way to communicate to your infested rat-brain. So- 'Til next time."
I do, I want to beat him up. Not in fron tof people, just in a dead-end alley if we can find one. Or in the middle of a big empty park-? Does he have a posse? No, he is too obnoxious. Impossible. Anyhow, the point is that -ONCE AGAIN- the US has a crappy enough image abroad a it is without this guy getting trashed and shouting/harassing thousands of Germans and Turks (who are just going about their business) EVERY DAY. How is he even here? I should go try to film or foto this guy in his chosen profession in his chosen environment. I am starting to wonder if he is just a huge asshole or possibly schizophrenic...
SMS bleep-bleep text in phone, ring ring, knock knock, ring ring "hey Ms. Saul, you wanna help me eat these goose eggs?"
Yesterday at work the owner passed out goose eggs to everyone from his family farm. I carfeully packed mine in a small boy using balled up discarded interview notes and drug it along to Linie Eins, the punk (squat?) bar.
I like to tip there more than often/usual because it is supposedly a communist/anarchist/anti-capitalist bar- therefore there is a certain irony in see their ideals melt away with a smile and a "danke" after getting a rare tip.
The box sat on the table for 6 hours, we thought to draw Hitler har and moustache on them and give them back to the owner as a joke/message, but no... the thing is that no one wated to eat these eggs, everyone was afraid, I inherited one from a gurl who shorwd zero interest, I mean- they didn't come from a store, they were from a farm adn their shells were stained a mottled green from goose poop, they were probably deadly. The Wildfang and I had to explain to one of the stoic but respectable guys fro the graphics department about "how birds DO IT." Cloaca, "like frogs" they just rub their butts together. There is an exchange of fluids... like, no penetration. Wierd, totally different." I love the fact that the Wildfang knows stiff like this. She loved the fact that I know about the sex lives of Bobobos. I thought eveyone knew that... maybe not in East Germany they didn't. Wildfang's Death Metal BF shows up, glare glare drink drink, everyone leaves, I leave to bike home- not a far trip at all.
I put the box with the eggs on the spring-loaded clip on the back of my bike. On the ride home it fell off between Hallesches Tor and Prinzenstr. Had to retrieve it from oncoming traffic, but then- next morning it all paid off and Ms. Saul and I had a fried goose-egg and lamb lettuce and homemade vegan bread picnic on her floor.
Oh, crap, so- I might've been getting Talking Heads '77 and More Songs About Buildings and Food mixed up all these years because I burned copies so I wouldn't damage the originals... put two on one CD... hmm.
The Talking Heads This Must be the Place (Naive Melody)
Home is where I want to be
Pick me up and turn me round
I feel numb - burn with a weak heart
(So I) guess I must be having fun
The less we say about it the better
Make it up as we go along
Feet on the ground
Head in the sky
It's ok I know nothing's wrong . . nothing
Hi yo I got plenty of time
Hi yo you got light in your eyes
And you're standing here beside me
I love the passing of time
Never for money
Always for love
Cover up + say goodnight . . . say goodnight
Home - is where I want to be
But I guess I'm already there
I come home - -she lifted up her wings
Guess that this must be the place
I can't tell one from another
Did I find you, or you find me?
There was a time Before we were born
If someone asks, this where I'll be . . . where I'll be
Hi yo We drift in and out
Hi yo sing into my mouth
Out of all tose kinds of people
You got a face with a view
I'm just an animal looking for a home
Share the same space for a minute or two
And you love me till my heart stops
Love me till I'm dead
Eyes that light up, eyes look through you
Cover up the blank spots
Hit me on the head Ah ooh
(cheesy but human)
Friday, March 28, 2008
Cloud Computing Camel Jockey
Ok, terrible day to forget my camera- there are posters for a Camel race! "Kamelrennen" May 25th at Trabrennbahn in Karlshorst there will be 30 racing camels ridden by, well- totally pumped camel jockies! wow. how much are tickets?...
and here is a link which explains Cloud Computing because it is a term I keep seeing...
in other randomness, this WIRED post REZNOR vs. RADIOHEAD is quite entertaining
While in Prague we walked around town, visited the curiously organised National Museum which had a huge main exbibit about the history of feet- called: "Human Traces: A Walk from Prehistory to the Moon" including a Timberland boot (like the one I was wearing) for Shaquille O'neill - which I think was a size 24 -you could fit full-grown dachshund in it. They also had some great dinosaur skeletons of dinosaurs I was unfamiliar with- like Gigantosaurus (an uglier, bigger version T.Rex with longer arms.) Mr. White and I spent a lot of time in cafes and pubs as well:
and trying to resist the urge to exit through the roof window in out room, (which lead to a steep tile decline and certain death below)... question being: if you are dead do you still have to pay the fine?:
Maybe this post is of no interest to anyone else- but I will include some Prague recommendations as soon as I can pin-down the names of some of the places we were at...
Watched a great film- which is unfortunately re-titled in English as "The Edge of Heaven" (should/could be "On the Other Side")(Deutsch:" Auf der anderen Seite" Turkish: "Yaşamın Kıyısında") while suffering from some pretty gnarly food poisioning as a result of buying some on-sale joghurt at a Türkish market (aforementioned shopping post), ugh- so not cool. Although this movie really presses all one's emotionally vulnerable buttons and has those certain cringing things= I mean scenes where long lost so and so is searching for long lost so and so and we, the viewers, see them pass on the street, just missing one another, (*clench toes*, WHYYYY didn't they SEE each other, THEN everything would be OK!!!!!!) The movie really does a lot in terms of addressing and bridging German-Turkish gaps in understanding, -issues that are usually swept under the carpet here. On top of that Nurgül Yeşilçay is lovely in a very tomboy-ish sort of way.
Anyhow, the film really hit home- but nevertheless spent almost 24 hours runningback and forth between bed and bathroom, staring off into space, sweating and when I could actually focus: getting in my freshly downloaded fix of Battlestar Galactica season 3 in HD from skyone, thank ye internet Gods.
Admittedly, I was greedy. THe Battlestar Galactica HD downloads was over 21 GB and took 4 days- that is 4 days of connectivity, so I kept trying to play it before it was finished, ooh- that is creepsville, BUT it gave me a better understanding of how torrents work. If i tried watching the video before all the torrentedinfo and files and bits and pieces had been berry-plucked adn reassembeld then the result was a freakshow of mutated digital morphod action- people appearing in the middle of their own faces, space battles bursing in blocks and chunks from Admiral Adama's pockmarked cheeks, the blonde cylons nearly nude ehrything in bloodbath bikinisbeachdigidigi -yuck! a real bad (digital) trip if you open thos unripened torrents- fascinating nevertheless. Audio without image, image gone amock. ouiyoui. I do like how season three deals with ethics of torture and biological warfare, though.
In other exciting news, not entirely unrelated to the film mentioned above the blog got a really great anonymous comment a few posts ago:
"xcuse me? you have yourself a pretty rasist conversation and sport some "pretty fixed" ideas on the germans, too. you have proven very vividly that respectless people are to be found everywhere, from some random girl on a train ride , who happens to be german or a blogger who seems american. isn t that some nice ass paradox, hunh?"
This commenter is actually right, by US standards some of my posts are totally unacceptable, but here I am in Europe, where race issues are still -well- sort-of, uhm- unfolding. When I post things which are wildly critical of the Germans I do cringe a bit, sure -but- as is my policy, I do not remove content from this blog, so even if somthing is totally effed-up, like me pointing out how a young German woman has been effectivley brainwashed by her society into a reborn sort of order-obsessed fascist, well- what can I say? It ends up as a subjective/objective post, that is - if I were German witnessing the incident I would probably think along the same lines of the woman yelling at the guy, which is: "Get out of that seat you lazy old Slavik &§%#! You didn't pay for a reservation, you must move / you have no right to sit there!" but, since I sorta despise that sort of order-and-speißig obsession (especially with the €2 it costs to reserve a seat) and the fact that someone has to crate have and hate all over a long trainride full of tired people on Easter Monday, -a holiday- my reaction is "Wow, -you are SO CRAZY and you don't even know it."
Wednesday, March 26, 2008
A Sun Microsystems press conference in virtual world Second Life..
The Journal of Nature in Visual Culture
available free to download, click that, ja.
ALSO, if you are a photographer in Berlin, do this-
Wir suchen fotografen in Berlin:
WHEN: Tuesday, May 6th, 2008, from 7pm until midnight. The potluck begins at 7pm and the slideshow begins at 9:30pm and ends at 11:30pm with one intermission.
WHERE: RAW-Tempel: Revaler Straße 99.
The RAW-Tempel, in the area of Berlin-Friedrichshain. RAW-Tempel is a non-profit community organization that seeks to offer reasonably priced social and cultural events and activities.
Slideluck Potshow Berlin is produced by Agentur Kunath
Agentur Kunath organizes Berlin events with a special flair in particular unusual locations only known by insiders www.marketingcontact.de
Deadline: end of April 2008
More information and application: www.slideluckpotshow.com/berlin.php
Exhausted, doing a freeze-my hands bikeride to H&M after work totally expecting to find those fabulous €1,90 gloves- but when I get there - noo, no no, where the gloves were are only racks and racks of sunglasses and flipflops, and it is snowflurries outside. realising that I do not own a sweater, I buy a clearance olive-green acrylic pullover, -perhaps I can wrap it around my hands?
"Gibt's zufällig noch Handschuhe zu vekaufen?" I ask at the checkout.
"Neee, wir hätten das (nodding to the snow) nie erwartet. Sorry."
"Scheiß. Ok," shrug and smile.
Cold cold ride under the U-Bahn back to Kotbusser Tor where I begin to gather vegetables for my great vegetarian lasagne.
Fruit stand is cheap- 4 roma tomatoes for €.30! No interaction with guy working there, they are having a heated discussion.
Kaiser's grocery store with the foot-smell and constant cluster of alcoholics and their dogs out front has no Lasagne pasta sheets, but does have shredded mozzerella and cheap wine. Loud American in a corner downstairs on a mobile "Yea- ok. Ok, well. Ok, I#ll grab some (insert spiffy food name) and -- right--- right--- ok, see you in 20 minutes, ok. Ok, right. ok. ciao!" we give each other a look. Does he know...? I often wonder this, even if he wasn't talking I could probably peg him as American- I have been here long enough, but- can he do the same to me.
No-name Turkish markt has things in cans, I accidentally buy tomato paste because it is in turkish, -"scheiß!" mal zwei.
Edeka- sold out of coal for heating, or didn't re-stock.
"wir hätten das (nodding to the snow) nie erwartet. Sorry."
Find things, gather gather until my bike is so off-balance it is not really safe to ride, stick to teh sidewalks.
final checkout at another Edeka, the nice woman at the cashier (whom I see daily) is rabling and mumbling on about something, not really to me, even. My brain is tired, I can barely do German.
I do, however, pick out the phrase "and the parrot stole it-"
I perk up: "Huh, ein papagai?"
"Ja, eine papagai hat heute schokolade geklaut. Ein papagei wie eine Rabe. Ich kann's fast nicht glauben."
They had been victims of a shoplifing parrot earlier. He stole chocolate. They still couldn't believe it.
"Well, that doesn't happen every day." I tried to joke.
She shook her head and wished me a pleasant evening. Muttering "Ein papagai..." I think: "Gosh,I love the checkout ladies of the larger Kottbusser Damm Edeka."
New TED conference videos are up! Now I can at least sort-of massage my brain while doing menial crap at work.
How effing adorable is Dave Eggers??? Saw him at bumbershoot a few years back - he is just, well, a great goofball of a public speaker.
Tuesday, March 25, 2008
FULL DISCLOSURE: I love grocery stores, espcially large ones that are open 24 hours.
ME: Ok, so Right across the street from Mr. White in Jihlava there is a TESCO! A tesco the size of the entire Hermannplatz and it is open 24 hours! It only closes one day a year! Christmas!
NK: That is not good.
ME: Oh, but it is. It is like heaven.
NK: Mh. But that is komsum-bullshit.
ME: But here I cannot get any real food at a real supermarket after 8pm! There I could get a frozen pizza at 3 in the morning! or a magazine at 4am or a - a... pair of socks and kebab-flavored chips (crisps) at 5am! and Jihlava is a town of 50,000 people- and HERE in Berlin - a city of 3,5 million people and we can't even DO those things, it is ILLEGAL here! Illegal for stores to be open like that-
NK: of course, It is bad.
ME: It is good. I like it. It is capitalist bullshit, yes, but a beautiful thing.
NK: No. No, it is bad.
Post Subtitled: Fascism and Oppression of myself and others is/are my favorite hobbies.
Post Sub-Subtitled:ME THINKING: "OH- damn, I am back in Germany."
DIS CLAIMER: I know it isn't really "ok" for me to rail on the Germans and bash the national mentality, but in this blog everything is Fair Game -and sometimes there are just situations which must be reported...
SKYPE Convesation this morning after my return from Prague, Jihlava, Vienna, return through Slovakia to Jihlava then Prague adn Back to Berlin using Trains, Busses and Automobiles:
Mr. White: How was the train back?
TAR says: heyy, I was just writing you an email
TAR says: "thanks for the text, couldn't answer because the phone is drained- but ja, interseting voyage back, got home around 11 - smoothe trip
only issue was that I was leaving from Holesovice not the one where I arrived in Prauge but it was easy to figure out how to get there-
thanks again for everythign, it was really refreshing to be in Czech, I felt pretty good there in comparison to Berlin -at the moment, anyhow-"
Mr. White: Oh, shit... the other station.
Mr. White: I didn't even think to ask about that.
Mr. White:It is pretty close, though.
TAR says: three stops.ja, train ride - it was good, -well- weird- the trains started in Bratislava I think and all throughout the ride there was/were clashes between the Germans and Czech/Slovaks
Mr. White: On the train?
TAR says: ja, like the Germans all had reservations and the Czechs/Slovaks were just sitting anywhere, there were a lot of arguments
Mr. White: Culture misunderstanding... Czechs don't bother with such silliness.
TAR says: some funny situations, and some just sad. I was like "OH- damn, I'm definitely back Germany."
Mr. White: The Germans must have been driven nuts when they tried to rule this place.
Mr. White: They waste a lot of energy with their insistance on the rules...
TAR says: ja, especially if there are free unreserved seats everwhere- this one German girl stodd for 5 minutes practically yelling at an old man from Bratislava to get out of the seat that she has "reserved and paid for" and he jst brushed her off-
Mr. White: Nice. Old men should be able to do what they want... at least when it comes to seats on trains.
TAR says: she was such an honest-to-god cunt, she was about 25years old and he was about 70-75, sitting quietly next to his wife
TAR says: she made him move across to another seat, huffing adn snorting the whole time even though about 30% of the seats in the train were free and unreserved, including the one she leaned on as she practially yelled at him for 5 mintes, scolding him like a child "I paid for that seat, it it reserved in my name, if you cna show me papers that says it is reserved in YOUR name you can stay there, otherwise you need to MOVE!" he didn't even speak German and she is yelling at him in German- a quiet old man
Mr. White: Maybe you could start acting like a Czech. It might influence the Germans positively.
TAR says: (she, not he)
TAR says: I actually had a similar issue, some women from Bratislava - well, one was sitting in my seat
Mr. White says: Did you have a reservation?
TAR says: Ja, I had a reservation- and I asked her if I was sitting in her seat, in which case it would be ok becasue then neither of us would be kicked out of our seats
Mr. White: Oh, right...
TAR says: but she misunderstood it as me wanting to sit in my seat adn sort o gave me a sideways look, like: "it really doesn't matter, does it" and I was like - "yea, totally. that is my automatically programmed robo-faschist brain training overtaking my humanity and it really doesn't matter" and then i felt like a spießer, grr. and I think all the Slovak women thought I wasa typical german faschist order- and-rule junkie
Mr. White: Ha, ha... maybe. Did you try English or German?
TAR says: german- well, both
TAR says: the train was aslo full of asians, some tourists adn some not
TAR says: that was unexpected- but the ride was beautiful, didn't see it on the way, but along the river with the cliffs and riverside villages, that is a great ride
Mr. White: German is seriously unpopular here now... I don't know if it's got to do with the history...
TAR says: I mean, it was dark on the trio there- so you couldn't see any of that
Mr. White: or if it's for other reasons...
Mr. White: There was an article on education here explaining how Spanish (an entirely useless language here) has surpassed German in popularity.
Mr. White:At some point, you've got to see the entire landscape.
TAR says: hm, well, if everyone in a train witnesses a girl (a girl with clothing like a uniform, tight monochrome-, a too-properly dressed student in long overcoat, pale with dark hair and with short straight-cut short bangs and tiny glasses) really relentlessly bully an old couple, then - well, it doesn#t do much for the Germans' image abroad. I always try to take things like that into account- part of the reason why i wanted to talk to / help the Gypsy guy, -like, if our country is on everyone's shitlist worldwide then I kind-of (at least)want people to get a good impression of Americans on a personal level...
TAR says: whenever possibl.e
Mr. White says: I agree... Europeans can have some pretty fixed ideas...
TAR says: jaaa, don't we all. I mean,
TAR says: I got home and talked with NK about it
Mr. White: What's her opinion?
TAR says: well, she knows the Germans are like this... sort of agrees it is shitty, but that's about it...
Mr. White says: Hmm...
TAR says: I told her I could move further east. life in western europe, as in the USA... is kind of predicatble and meaningless at this point... could feel the vaccuum-suck as I moved steadily west...
Friday, March 21, 2008
NOTE: not going to care much for spelling on this grimey keyboard this morning.
I had a seat in one of the 6-seater cabins on the train from Berlin to Prague, there was a beat-up looking youngman with 2 black eyes sitting in my seat when I arrived, asked him to move so he went to the seat across from me. THe car quicklz\y filled with provincial germans and got underway, I hid in teh pages of the UK paperback edition if "I am Charlotte Simmons" which I bought for €1 last week, but judging by the cover my fellow travellers probably thought it was soft porn, grrr.
Eastern European enters and points to his reserved seat, this boots black eye guy for the second time and he laves the cabin, practically snarling in the man's face as he laves: "SPITZNASE!" and leaves.
Eastern European man is old and tired looking (I leater find out that he is 30- three yoears older tham me), he is cute, with Wind in the Willows-type features and balding, he has the largest backpacks I have ever seen- several, and brings them in along with 3 large packages of Unicef pampers (nappies), the Germans' feathers are ruffled. How dare he cause so much commotion.
He sits, we procees, me with my nose in the book, dozing off from time to time, I lose focus then wake up not sure about how ling I was out/ one minute? 10?
The Eastern European man is asking little questions "what time is it, can I use your phone for a second if I give you a euro" three German women- one done-up too-old to party raver chick who looks like she has done a ton too much esctacy, a daffy spießig lady next to me and then a 20-something roly-poly hairgelled dorfer techno guy (who looks like he could be a lesbian plummer), they all deflect the man's questions and are basically just rude. It is almost like watching kids lick on a nerd at recess.
Read, read ,read, and there is chatter- talking about the Love Parade and other techo music fests and the prices of milk and sugar and I tune as much out as possible.
Eastern European man leaves to use the restroom adn as soon as he is out of earshot they all talk shit like a bunch of hens (including the teenage boy) about him while he's gone. As George would say: "Fucking villagers, man. Buncha Fucking villagers."
Fortunately all the Germans exit by the time we reach Dresden.
Then it is just me and him.
He asks to use my mobile to send an SMS text to his cousin in Hungary.
"Ich glaub ich hab' GAR -also; fast- keine geld auf meine handykonto, ich hab's nicht hochgeladen, sorrz/ aber du kannst es versuchen wen du wilst, aber ich glaub es geht nicht-"
"Abber geht vielleicht?"
"Vielleicht. Weis nicht."
He types his text and tries to send about 5 times, but I have too little money on my phone.
"Sorry. Wohin fährst du?"
"Ahh, Budapest, heute: Daenemark-Budapest! Ish war letzt zeit 34 länder. Asyl -weis du politik asyl? hatte ich Deutschland, England, Irland, dann sagte alle: 'WEG!' aber Rumanien ist EU! - ja,nicht mehr ist ok, EU alles offen alles offen/ Ish komme aus Rumanien, weis du-? Weis du Rumanien?"
"Ja, ja, natuerlich"
"Ahh- du bis Czech?"
"Nein nein, Amerikaner- "
"Ahh, amerika, gutes land gutes land, Bush guter man- hilfst du mir nach Amerika to gehen, hast du familie wo ich eine vertrag bekommen kann?"
I have often gotten myself into conversations with Eastern Europeans who gush about what a good man President Bush is, - I tend to hold my breath and my tongue and cringe and say: "Ahh, yesss- good man, good president -but in his foreign and ecomomic and domestic policies he isn't so smart..." Cringe, smile, nod nod, wink. You just can't argue about this stuff. There is a tendency to see the toppling of Saddam as a heroic move and the hunting down of "terroriosts" as a heroic move... anyhow, moving right along, I will skip the Euro-Denglish and just enter some of the highlights of our hours-long conversation, which revolved a lot around money and where it is expensive to live/visit and where not:
"Amerika, good land, good land, good people." (Never been there and has never met an American)
5 minutes later, his position changes:
"Amerika, dangerous, full of Mafia- I saw it in the journal, read it in the journal in Romania and saw it on the television: Amerika very dangerous. You sleep with one eye open in Amerika because the Arab terrorists see you have money or expensive thinsgs and they come to get it in the middle of the night, you are not safe, everyone want your things"
President of Romania, good man- taking out all corruption, good man!" (5 minutes later) "I need something, I need police help I go to police station and I pay them and they do what I ask-"
Me: "Oh, -is that expensive?"
Maybe Gypsy Guy: "Mhh, no Rumanien nothing is expensive."
(later)"My grandfather was a Gypsy Prince but he was killed by the Governor (or president) because of politic and gold."
(later later) "Jesus save you, you read bible each night before you go to bed and then Jesus come in year 3000 and save you. We thought year 2000 but now probably year 3000"
(later) "There is Chinese people in New York? mmh- Owwwh" (gives twisted face of disapproval)
crossing the border into Czech he says "Now come GrenePolizei, but not they can say NOTHING! They no ask me if have money, they no ask me where I from where I going , they no ask me why why why - where you go why you go, whey no ask me 'how much money' I have, heHEH- EU! Alles offen, EU!" (no border police come through the train afterall)
he bursts out, elated "HAH! Kein Grenz Polizei, keine fragen mehr! Alles OFFEN, EU, ALLES offen!"
(later) "Kinder, gut. Frau- auch gut, ich liebe meine frau, aber sie hat auch 2 kinder von andere Mann, von vorher- und ich soll auch diese kider lieben, also- die sind OK, aber die sind nicht meine kinder. Schade. aber ich leibe meine frau..." goes into come complicated family politics, his brother is interested in his wife, especially when he is out of town for extended periods of time- "Eez no' good, eh?"
"No, not good." I reply in earnest.
(and later) "You know Dracula- also from Rumanien, Transylvannien, schlaue mann, women come- pretty rich young women and they want he drink blood-. He sell castle no want Hollywood no want, ahh, don't know- spanish come, want make movie, ahh, he move castle, aHHH- hmm, he want no..." This is a 10 minute Englich-German-Romanian explanation which I nod-along with but cannot make heads not tails of. Apparently the conclusion was supposed to be that Count Dracula was no effing sellout.
at some point I kept trying to get back to reading I am Charlotte Simmons but it never lasted more than a minute before he found another random subject to talk about. He asked whether they used Euro or somethign else as money in Prague, and not wanting to appear to much of an smartass I just saind "uhm, not sure-" so he went a few cars away to ask. The conversaiton was quite loud and could be heard:
"IN Czeck Republik, they using Euro?" he asks to some young dorks.
"No, no, our country -. ahm- our country at the moment hate the euro. really will fight against the euro- so, yes, we - we have crowns." Conversation goes on a flip-flip-loop for a few minutes, always revealing teh same answer: no euro, always re-emphasizing the same points.
He comes back to cabin. "In America, they using Euro soon?"
"noo- no no no,,,nooooo-!" I explain.
In the half- hour before arrival in Prague he begins un-packing then re-packing. He has the largest backpack I have ever seen EVER. it is a soft-sided suitcase slightly overweight-teardrop shapeyou could easily fit a full grown person in it if they curled up into a ball. He asks for assistance after the zipper breaks. We pack and re-pack and get the mounds of childrens' clothing, toothpaste, bedsheets, shampoo and whatnot he has manages to stuff into his multiple backspacks, suitcases, and tattered plastic bags. When everything is secure we flop back town and study our trains progress, I peek into my own tattered plastic bag full of fruit and juice-
We relax and eat banannas. He continutes:
"Amerika- hm, good land, gute leute, how I go to amerika, they want money for visa?"
Upon arrival in Prague I am met by Mr. White, to whom I quickly explain that i must help my new friend carry his things to his train connection, after some confusion all goes well, we shake and he is off on the night train to Budapest.
TO BE CONTINUED
Thursday, March 20, 2008
I am heading to Prague and then onto Jilava (Ilava) so i definitely will not be writing over the next few days- probably.
Hope everyone enjoys the weekend.
FIVE YEARS OF THE IRAQ WAR
NOTE: This post was originally written for the newly rennovated ELECTROPEASANT site. Do checkitout.
Because of the magic of gmail I rarely get spam in my inbox (disclaimer: not paid to say that) but work, mhh, - well, work email still gets spam, I rarely ever read it- but this morning I actually got one which i thought was really adorable, (disclaimer: no, I haven't been sleeping much and, yes, -drinking too much coffee) like, the simple English errors, then I could imagine a whole scene built around it- (*pssst*: actual message is in BOLD below) -maybe... maybe the scene is a couple vacationing on an island, staying in a tiny hut somewhere and then-
Narrarator: "Have you ever heard this,"
cuts to woman's over-made up (make-up'd) eye, caked-on silver eyeshadow. Shot is held for an extremely long time so that we are allowed to study even the tiny tiny blood vessels in the whites of her eyes. She lets out a high-pitched scream
""Damn it! Your penis is really tiny!"?"
Shot of beach, hut, crickets can be heard all around and a near-full moon hangs above as the tiny tiny waves gently lap the shore, then pull back, receding adn repeasing. Chirp chirp...
Narrator: "Didn't you feel stupid?"
Man bursts out from the hut, doubles over clutching his stomach and wailing, attempts to bury his face in the sand like an ostrich, woman stands in the doorway, backlit- with hands on her hips, tapping her foot and biting the insid of her cheek. Wondering to herself: Has she said something wrong?...
Close-up of the man's strained, tear-streaked face, wincing with emotional turmoil- he sobs, hardly catching his breath inbetween spasms of shame. Woman turns and heads back into the hut, lights go out an the man rolls onto his side in fetal position under the moonlight hoping the tide might carry him away in his sleep. Final dying-animal-type wail is released from his chest followed by heavy sobs.
Narrarator: "Don't let ladies prefer dildo to you ! M ldp eg uyf ad dn ik will improve your situation once and forever!"
A flash of light, the scene re-starts at the close-up of woman's wide-eyed expression.
Narrator: You should simply rely on this magic preparation!
Woman says with an expression of wonder: "Oh! Your p rr e mlz ni tlw s is so la sdn rge!"
Narrator: "Isn't that what you dream to hear every day?"
Soon you'll be the only one ladies will want!Me px ga drx di mf k is your real cure!
Close up of man's eyes looking pleasantly surprised, as if he is watching a puppy frolic in a field of pansies.
Shot of the moonlit beach hut, lights go out and "Megadik!" logo fades into lower right-hand corner, FADE OUT.
Post Subtitled: (A post that probably only I care about, really)
My old friend Tim Cubbison recently emailed me every text I had sent him since 1998. All of this stuff I had completely lost (bue to dead computers or smashed/deteriorating floppy discs or damaged files!?!) So I was suprised to come across the email jam packed full of weird old writing scraps. Interesting to look back and see that stuff, almost more interesting than looking at old photos- actually. It isn't that the writing is any good really, but rather it is fascinating to observe what one thought was good and how one's Brain worked. Here is a exerpt from a piece I was calling "SALT." at the time, written while I was living in Frankfurt and der Oder (directly on the Polish border) - a great time because all I had was a room with a view of the river and Poland and - well- paper and pens. I don't even recall reading or using a computer the whole time I was there.
anyhow, here's the angsty text from a 19-year old me, errors not removed (and things of note: 1.I am referring to the woman I am currently married to, 2.This was written around the same time I was in Czech and I am heading there again today after work,) ...odd:
"Shall it be said that we are our own greatest distractions? I don't
think so. We are not directly to blame for our own distraction. it is the
us within that tries to him us along. As he walked and thought he pulled out
a small notepad and begin to scratch a small entry for the day's
occurrences, or rather- the nights lengthiness that would make him think
along the lines he happened to be thinking that day. Salt. the sour
"Thursday, January 5th 2000
I can't sleeep, only dreeem. This is a bit satisfying and a bit distressing.
I wake, and the nights long revelations have left me exhausted, even more so
that before the "sleep." The apparent disappearance of the subconscious is
actually a mere withdrawal, a retreat to only bring on a new reinforced wave
of attacks that may last... who knows how long? Upon waking, I see the
words etched into the bedframe: save the last. Last what? When was it
written? The foreign earth and the view from the seventh story are
significantly different, but they aren't- it's only the way I am viewing
them. They don't change, only I. The desk, crowded with plenty of mundane
objects to choose from. This and that. A pair of glasses that are way too
strong, a fashion magazine full of beautiful people, a salt shaker, a Swiss
army knife. Their relations to me. They themselves are NOT, but mere
shapes and sizes in which the molecules follow temporary rules to keep these
shapes and sizes. I'd like to identify with each. I'd like to say I'm the
knife, the glass, the salt, but we are all one in the same: the atom.
What's really happening? This is not really happening. Or, so says the
underground observatory that is most me. I have been digging. I am on the
way. I want it, and it obviously wants me. The Underground Observatory.
The home of the "A" word that I won't mention. The horrific, terrible,
overrated "a" word. Please excuse the massacred mood. I try, I really do.
I woke up and thought, 'I'll dress nice today, to fool them.' Who am I
trying to fool. What's the purpose. Honestly, honesty is what's most
needed here. But if I can't define that for myself, then who can? She?
With her, who is my equal- so far away and sofar uncreated as I will know
her, she is the missing link, no doubt into becoming what I've always been
meant to be, which is a further thing I do not yet know. But now, I need
breakfast, lunch dinner, something to route and routine the day and bring
about some 'normalcy.' Off we go- to the table. The fork, knife, spoon,
Salt. Today I am the salt. Tomorrow, who knows? But someday I'll be the
At this, he capped the pen, walked further, and worried fewer."
Wednesday, March 19, 2008
I guess this is the MUST READ of the day. I was shocked.
(thanks Dan!), and JESUS, DMX- jeeeeeeeeezzzus.
excerpt (DMX in bold):
What the fuck is a Barack?! Barack Obama. Where he from, Africa?
Yeah, his dad is from Kenya.
What the fuck?! That ain’t no fuckin’ name, yo. That ain’t that nigga’s name. You can’t be serious. Barack Obama. Get the fuck outta here.
You’re telling me you haven’t heard about him before.
I ain’t really paying much attention.
Since sophomore year of college I have had a dislike of DMX (mainly because the Young Republican jocks two doors down would blast him at all hours- sometimes with the door open. DMX is terrible terrible terrible music. For idiots.
"Uhm, guys, you mind turing the DMX down a bit?..."
then a half hour later- Boom Growl Boom all over again. if you really want to torture yourself you can watch this videojust to hear his stupid stupid voice:
Labels: DMX on OBAMA DMX is an idiot
but if you really want you can hear it again and again and again HERE
(see lower right in the "FRIENDS (and aquaintances) listing)
thanks to -upstanding pillar of the community- Mr. Kyriacou for the link to -what seems to be- a sort of UK version of "the Onion" (dunno who came first) called
healthy little poke at the EU HERE.
it is a robot the size of a shetland pony ... can you just imagine spinning sawblade arms all over it. OR did you SEE Starship Troopers???
(thanks to Dan of Pulpable for the heads-up and Matthew Yglesias, Associate Editor of The Atlantic Monthly for the original post.
"BigDog: 235 lbs
Payload: 340 lbs"
Monday, March 17, 2008
From Wikipedia: "In September 2005, Mos Def released the single "Katrina Clap," renamed "Dollar Day" for True Magic, (utilizing the instrumental for New Orleans rappers UTP's "Nolia Clap"), a criticism of the Bush administration's response to Hurricane Katrina. On the night of the MTV Video Music Awards, Mos Def pulled up in front of Radio City Music Hall on a flatbed truck and began performing the "Katrina Clap" single in front of a crowd that quickly gathered around him. He was subsequently arrested despite having a public performance permit in his possession."
-had heard about this but just now came across the video.
NY College Girls corner us talking to musicians next to me fervently for a LONG time, basically frying my circuts- I can't handle this amount of energy being blasted from people's mouthes any longer... bar started off being half non-smoking but that has long since been forgotten as the night goes on and people drink more- yep, so goes the Berlin smoking ban.
The NY College Girls then notice the German copy of Franny und Zooey laying face down in front of me on the table, I had hardly even noticed it myself:
"Omigod! Is that yours?"
"Uhm, no I think it belongs to the bar- it is in German" I mumbled back.
"Omigod, that is like me FAVORITE BOOK! I usually carry a copy with me in my purse. Have you read 9 stories?" (switches back to talk to musicians) "Have you read 9 Stories? No? I will TOOOOTAlllly bring you a copy next week- omigod, it is sooo good! You have to read it."
The radiation is begininning to melt my eyes. What is up with hipster girls peeing their pants over Salinger? It is practically a right of passage... and now am I in the too-cool/jaded/sad about life phase/stage to find Salinger romantic any longer?-how sad, hmm.
Just sort of... playing with the candle wax, trying to remember if I had another €2 to get another beer to make myself less productive at work tomorrow... checking a pocket, then leaving it alone for a bit... and then checking again a few minutes later, as if a €2 coin would magically appear out of thin air if I wasn't looking... mh. It is Friday tomorrow, afterall... and... since the live music ended the number of attractive women in room seems to be thinning... dwindling... disappearing or are they getting scared-off by the creepy crazy noisy old man in the corner or is it us or are they just going home to boyfriends?- (?) , grr-, going going gone-ing my focues is fuzzy-ing, loud girls go on and on- "NY NY NY" jackammering butterflies- but don't get me wrong, I think NY is great- but not when it is slapping me in the face. Americans. Loud. Louder than anyone else in the room by a good number of decibels... like Spinal Tap turned up to "11" in conversation. I suddenly think: "I want to come back here, actually... more often... really cozy."
and on and on they go:
"Ohmigod if you went more than a month without paying rent in New Your you'd like, totallly be in JAIL! Know of any affordable apartments nearby?..."
Jesus. Exhaustion. American electro-overhyperness. Augh. Sucking. Energy. Can't. Move.
(they leave after a final death-ray blast of high-focus chatter. 10 minutes later I find myself sitting next-to one remaining American College girl:
"Oh god... I mean, I've been here for, like, almost 4 weeks and I am sooo depressed and lonely and bored, like, I thought it would be easier to meet people... like, there's a lot going on but i just don't know how to meet people and- you know- I feel really wierd and lost."
Me: "Yea. There are a shitload of Americans in Berlin."( but thinking:jezzzus, you are a STUDENT- you have NO WORRIES except your underdeveloped social life, uhm- where is my machetè? I will help hack up the undergrowth which has entangled you during these last weeks of inactivity you poor girl... need distraction, need... uhm, where did the daffy yet adorable Iranian girl dissappear to which I was talking with for the first hour I was here?... shit, Micah got her. Whatever, good for him.)
American College girl: "Like, I just met those other New York girls tonight because we are all in the same German class... like I showed up and there was, like, no communication with Humboldt and now my classes don't start until April and I just have to hang out and learn German. Sprekken zee Doitsh?"
Me: "Mh. m-hmh."
Not in the mood, noooo... I am a jerk. Sometimes. I did feign interest and give some advice... but... just wanted to be a piece of furniture, really.
Sunday, March 16, 2008
Torrented and watched cloverfield last night, which has to be one of the best monster movies in recent years- nevertheless, there were some annoying aspects- the strange American dating issues, boy-girl stuff- very akward, and the blatant product placement in one of the final scenes (after being blown up and attacked all night how did that swoosh manage to stay so white?
Note: shit, somehow it blocks the screenshot option, grr.
The other film I rented and watched over the weekend was "Shoppen" a German comedy about speed-dating in Munich. At work occasionally I come across expressions of mild disgust and disbelief at how Americans have this (above mentioned) akward mating dance called "dating" and also the fact that so many get married in their mid to late 20s whereas Germans it seems to be closer to mid-30s. Augh. So. This "Shoppen film, which also had an actress friend of NKs from Kaiserslautern whom I saw in a studn production of Ionesco's the Bald Soprano in 1999, was icky in that it did a good job of prtraying the uttern neurosis of singles in their mid-to-late 30s in Munich... utter maddening intolerable quirkiness. I'd imagine your average speed dating session is far less interesting and high-energy than what was portrayed in the film, ... mmh. Trailer:
Friday, March 14, 2008
Album: Sound Of Silver
Title: Someone Great
I wish that we could talk about it,
But there, that's the problem.
With someone new I could have started,
Too late, for beginnings.
The little things that made me harassed,
Are gone, in a moment.
I miss the way we used to argue,
Locked, in your basement.
I wake up and the phone is ringing,
Surprised, as it's early.
And that should be the perfect warning,
That something's, a problem.
To tell the truth I saw it coming,
The way, you were breathing.
But nothing can prepare you for it,
The voice, on the other, end.
The worst is all the lovely weather,
I'm sad, it's not raining.
The coffee isn't even bitter,
Because, what's the difference?
There's all the work that needs to be done,
It's late, for revision.
There's all the time and all the planning,
And songs, to be finished.
And it keeps coming,
And it keeps coming,
And it keeps coming,
Till the day it stops
And it keeps coming,
Till the day it stops.
I wish that we could talk about it,
But there, that's the problem.
With someone new I could have started,
Too late, for beginnings.
You're smaller than my wife imagined,
Surprised, you were human.
There shouldn't be this ring of silence,
But what, are the options?
When someone great is gone.
We're safe, for the moment.
For the moment
society, anonymity, invisibility, etc.
Mopey personal-musing opener which I recommend you skip:
I often wonder why I keep-up the TAR ART RAT facade, I mean- MAYBE it has something to do with the fact that -for example- I had a meeting at a fancy resteraunt this morning where I interviewed a woman who- if she was aware of my blog and of my personal/otehr life- might not take me seriously. I mean, I took painstaking efforts to wear glasses, suit, look and act older because I look younger than I am- so interviewing people nearly twice my age is effing tough. They must think "who is this kid they sent to interview me" - to break the ice maybe I should just say "hi, I'm 15." grr. anyhow. Maybe someday I will run naked in the sun with this blog, maybe not.
Moving right along, here is an interesting and honest quote from German Sociologist Heinz Bude I came across in eurotopics this morning:
"The times when we could rely on a growing middle class that integrates an increasing number of people are over. There will be heightened inequality in our society in future, and more and more people will become marginalised, German sociologist Heinz Bude explains in an interview with Angelika Brauer. "There are certain places in our society where opportunities accumulate, and others where the risks accumulate and people have less and less chance of gaining control of their lives through their own effort. ... The point I'm trying to make is: everyone counts, our society can't afford to lose a single person. The message of neo-liberalism was: 'Some are just unlucky. They're superfluous. We can't do anything about it.' We need to take a look at society as a whole and reflect on why some people get left behind and how we can get the 'excluded' back in." (12/03/2008)
full article in German here...
I mean, there are days that I think "Jesus, Germany faces the same race issues that the US was grappling with in the 1950s... but no, it is different. The German immigrant poplation (mostly middle-eastern) is... well, they reside here and grow up adn grow old here- but there is no meshing going on, like- why aren't any of my co-workers Tükish-German? Out of 100 people there should be at least ONE non-white person statistically, right? Well, there is one South American-German and a Brit of Arab decent, but no German minorities... a bit disturning, and as I have mentioned: every day when I walk around Berlin I only see wwhite guys in suits, only... I have difficulty enough integrating as a caucasian American, but I can't imagine the diffiulty if I were from Lebannon or Nigeria for example...
In a casual conversation my boss said "Well, if you go to a country you should learn the language and customs." Ok, true enough. But what if that weren't enough? What if you were simply shut out from the get-go? What is the reason to attempt to integrate yourself then. NK said: "It is no wonder people give up, they just face too much rejection, then they retreat to their comfort zones within their own neighborhoods, which become their own worlds- bubbles where they speak their native language and do not attempt to integrate themselves..."
Living in Krezbeg on the border of Neukölln this is always apparent- and I blogged about it often when I first moved back here, but I kid of burnt-out on the matter and haven't written about it in awhile... nevertheless it will remain an issue for the Germans to grapple with for decades to come whether they like it or not... they can only overlook/look the other way for so long... hmm, we shall see.
Thursday, March 13, 2008
thanks to Pulpable's Dan for passing along another tiny bit of goodnes to be found on the internet via Andrew Sullivan's "The Daily Dish" (which we have become fans of:
needed that break.
other awesome shit Dan has sent and in some cases I have sent back:
Puddleblog- a blog about puddles.
Sheriff: Kansas woman sat on boyfriend's toilet for 2 years; didn't want to leave bathroom-
Coke now cheaper than cider? Only in Brown's Britain... check out the table in the link here- wow, drug prices have really gone down... why?
Ashley Alexandra Dupre(click name for myspace acct. link)
I love it when people get famous like this.
and she is a musician? a Britney-Spears-esque singer??? This makes it all less boring, I suppose.
Labels: emperorsclupvip kristen Ashley Alexandra Dupre myspace songs music emperor's club Spitzer NY Governor resignation what we want move your body Kristen prostitute Ashley Youmans Client Number 9 No. 9
Tuesday, March 11, 2008
new single from the Del tha Funkee Homosapien album "11th Hour" raises questions as to whether Del should have singles...
is that Mos Def?... of just Del dressed like Mos?...
Post Titled: Sweet, Sweet Jesus...
at first I was pretty appalled at this official White House viral video in which the President's dog, Barney, is planning a Christmas celebration... but then I thought "Gosh, if only this was all that I could remember about the past 8 years in the White House... that would be great." ...not to mention it has a cameo by everyone's favorite White House press secretary Tony Snow. I really like Tony Snow for some reason- probably because he was on Wait, Wait, - Don't tell me! and probably because his name is Tony Snow... which is a "cool" name, much cooler than mine... also, keep an eye out for a number of other colorful charachters...
after 4 minutes I was totally into it, although, admittedly- it is no opening scene of X-Men 2...
Monday, March 10, 2008
yes. life is meaningful.
buckets were actually just swinging in the wind. unmanned. more walk to work imagery...
one of the great things about the U-Bahn strike is that i get to walk home along stuff like this (6:30 PM):
I was not lying about the swanbutts! There is a swan with it's tail in the air, (white triangle mid-left)
new post HERE
Outtake: "hmm. interesting typo. I meant to use the word "blank":
Obama has allowed himself to be a black canvas onto which voters have been able to paint"
also, an OBAMA WIDGET:
AS i Have said before: "I'm just going to keep posting this image 'til he wins, -which he will." and I am actually posting this image again - literally- due to popular demand, there has been a rush this week to the blog because of people Googling "Obama-Wan" and ending up here.
original image can be ripped from my photobucket acct, CLICK: OBAMA-WAN
Labels: "Obama-Wan" Obama-Wan Kenobi Obama Wan Kenobi tar art rat tarartrat photo image foto iowa primaries Barack Obama Barak Obama Japan "May the force be with you" "You're our only hope." Obama win
Sunday, March 09, 2008
Honestly, folks, I can't say exactly what is going on with the blog. Guess the lack of cohesion is directly related to "real life" lately. I am throwing anything and everything at his hoping something will stick... (including banal Sunday home videos...should be more selective actually)
dress: min lee, model: jennifer gonzales
Betrachter - the viewer
zögern - to hesitate
offentsichtlich - obvious
erwischen - catch, get
my brain was my iPod, it could play back 36,000 songs.
...it still is and still can, I suppose.
Labels: 160 GB video iPod
if i were a junkie it would be my methodone- or clean needle, or whatever- for sure.
hear it here on WEEKEND AMERICA
Saturday, March 08, 2008
New Podcast uploaded
which is brilliantly titled
for you German-speakers
the music I have heard thus far is lovely...
from Chappelle's Show
and a very clever Tupac skit...
cute little documentary... na, toll.
Videos from Germany
These are two great videos from the country of Germany which I came across through the magic of YouTube and Google Video- (difference?)
thanks to the Cowboy Killers for the head's up on the balloon project
the balloon project berlin (watch fullscreen with sound)
bike acrobat Uni Wüerzburg, Germany
woke up and rolled over to watch 1.3 episodes of peep show then NK rumbled into action with teawaterboiling and brushing teeth and and and the day just had to fucking start so I put on last week's gross dried-sweat jogging outfit (an Oxford hoodie and sleeping sweats) and stretched while she drank lemon tea and watched Germany's next Top Model- this is Saturday morning, mind you and this is all there is to look forward to unless I haul my ass to Bauhaus to look at wood or just window shop for wood jesus how fucking boring BUT actually that is no longer true I can go and not come back or walk all over the city taking photos or attept to write or paint those are also options and maybe it will be ok but two days -scheiße- that is a long time anyhow ran out the door past the neighbor walking his dog- the one I babysat that one time- and onwards to Volkspark Hasenheide- and this morning I decide to shake things up a bit by saying hello to everyone which includes all babies and retirees and fellow joggers and African drug dealers and asshole dog-walking troll couples so what happens I run run run and they are all there the usual suspects we kind of sort of should recognized each other by now over the past few months and particularly after the third pass within 45 min so I go: "hallo" "morgen!" or just a nod and friendly huff- and the ONLY people who don't shrink away are the Italian man on the very top of the hill with his three boys kicking around the footballs and three out of five of the African drug dealers,they respond- perhaps not in German- but respond nevertheless. if you say hello or good morning the germans look at you like you are insane- OR as if you had just flicked a lit match a them -lovely- "grouchland" but a good game. all the while I am trying to figure out what the hell to do with myself for the next month... also a good game.
helps kill the pain...
SEASON 1 Episode 4
SEASON 1 Episode 5
SEASON 1 Episode 6