Sunday, December 4, 2011

Get in Line

The only thing I will get in line for, EVER, is Siebert’s Berliner pfannkuchen mit kirsch. The line (‘queue’ for those who don’t speak Yank) outside of Siebert Bakery and Konditorei in P’berg is brutal.  They sell the best baked goods in the known universe out of a shop smaller than my bathroom.  Really, more people could fit inside my bathroom than inside the Siebert shop (not that I’ve tried it).  So don’t let the line of a dozen people or more standing outside fool you.  They simply cannot cram everyone inside all at once.  But if you would really like to experience a pre-1989 communist bread line, go to Siebert on Saturday morning.  They close at noon on Saturday and do not re-open until Tuesday.  And since they mix crack cocaine into their flour to ensure a growing throng of junkies outside the shop at all times—you’d better wake up early on Saturday if you want your donut fix before night time.

Today I woke up at 9am.  This is the earliest I will ever wake up unless somebody is paying me to take photos at this time.  It had been at least two weeks since my last donut fix and I was getting awfully twitchy.  I was getting the DTs (donut tremors) and it was high time I had my high. Really, they put crack cocaine in the flour.  I’ve seen ‘em do it.  A cold wind chill bit at my ears; the Berlin winter is coming fast.  Which most of us would agree is unfair as we had no fucking summer whatsoever in Berlin.  Mother Nature is robbing us blind.  Bitch.  I got in line after peering between the first two bodies near the door—I needed to check the window display for my drug.  Someone sneered at me.  No, dear Deutschbag, I’m not trying to cut in line.  I’m doing inventory.  Get over it.

Twenty or more people were in the line.  I stood there watching the back of the neck in front of me.  Dark gray jacket and light gray scarf.  The pale skin of One Who Resides under Gray Skies.  Once again Berlin reminded me of the foggy city of San Francisco., where two things are out of place:  Cowboy hats and sun tans.  They wore a lot of black and gray in that city as well when I was living there.  Except for the god damned hippies.  Tie-dyed and bushy tailed tofu eaters.  Rainbow people.

Someone once told me they didn’t have the same kind of communism in the DDR—that the infamous bread lines only existed in the Eastern Blok countries under communism.  I always thought that all commies lived solely on canned meat, vodka and potatoes. Period.  History and urban mythology, traditions. Siebert Bakery has a century-long tradition. And a fierce logo:  Two fire-breathing lions are cutting coffee beans and carving pretzels with broad swords.  Then they present them to the king.  And they’ve been doing this since 1906.  Uninterrupted?  I wonder. Eastern Germany and East Berlin were walled off from the West for nearly 50 years.  Surely they didn’t get donuts and free flats AND free Trabants under communism.  I’ll be sure to ask the nice bakery lady to clarify that.  And if it’s true, I’m officially quitting capitalism and joining the communist party.  Tomorrow.

Siebert Backerei / Konditorei
Schönfließer Straße 12, Berlin - Prenzlauer Berg

Friday, November 11, 2011


The following conversation takes place entirely in German.  You are reading the translation of the notes which were pried out of the cold, dead hand of the witness.

Give me a Sterni, asshole!

Lick my greasy Mohawk, Deutschbag!

C’mon!  I begged most of the money!  All you did was flirt with the chicks walking into the store!

Both of you are fucked!  It was MY dog that made us get all the change for the beer today.

Shut up, bitch!  Your dog ate my fucking homework!

Oh, right… when was the last time YOU went to school?  Were there cars, or did you suck dick on horseback?

Shut up, fake punk bitch.  Your parents TOTALLY bought you all your piercings and tattoos. On layaway.  Your shirt says ‘Fight the system’ but you couldn’t fight a sprinkler system.

Look you idiots:  I was out here for like, HOURS and the bitch with the dog just got here.  No WAY is she getting my Sterni.  I’m just sayin.’
We got 4 euros in 4 hours…that’s like 10 Sternis.  Three of us.  Uhhhh…. How many do we each get?

I don’t have a fucking clue.  The bitch’s dog ate my fucking homework!

Both of you guys can suck my dog’s dick!

Oh, you’re soooo cool, Punk Rock Girl. I think some asshole wrote a song about you.  It sucked more dick than YOU!

All right you two, either fuck or fight, but for the love of GOTT, give me my fucking STERNI!

I want to break something!

Break open a STERNI!!!

Sternburg bier aus Leipzig ROCKS in ways I cannot begin to explain!  It’s like a malty, amber microbrew—only DIRT CHEAP! Like the people who drink it!

You said it.  All this anarchy is making me thirsty.  STERNI, anyone?

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Jesus H. Christ on a Bicycle

By owning a bike in Berlin you are issued a notarized, stamped (in triplicate) License to Be an Asshole.  You and your overpriced, faggy little bicycle are now the King of the Road.  Fuck motorists.  Fuck pedestrians. Fuck yeah!  There are naturally numerous regulations in Germany regarding the rights and behavior of cyclists.  Cyclists seem to have all of the former and fuckall of the latter.  If there are any rules for cyclists in Berlin I certainly haven’t seen them.  They have their own bike lane on most sidewalks.  This is the officially designated and holy bike lane reserved only for Bicycle Believers.  Heathen infidel pedestrians are not allowed to set foot inside.  You must leap over it and pray you aren’t given a shower of “SHEISSE!” screams and shaken fists. You could be struck and killed by a cyclist going 50km an hour and you wouldn’t have a case in German court.  Even if the cyclist was out of The Zone and weaving in and out of pedestrians like traffic cones in a racing course. In fact, German law states clearly that the cyclist has the right to urinate on your lifeless body before tying it to his bike and dragging you through the streets of Berlin.

“Case 10439: Jesus H. Christ on a Bike versus Feckless Idiot Pedestrian”
J.H.C.B.: “Your honor, I was minding my own business on my bike when F.I.P. stepped in my way.”
Judge:  “Did you ring your faggy little bike bell?”
J.H.C.B.: “Religiously.”
Judge: “Did you attempt to slow down?”
J.H.C.B.: “Good GOD no!”
Judge:  “And after you struck and killed the 80 year old woman, what did you do?”
J.H.C.B.:  “Got off my bike and checked for damage.  The old bitch’s dentures were stuck on my 1260 EUR racing frame!  So I yelled at the body.  Then I spit on it.  Then I felt the uncontrollable desire to urinate on the corpse.”
Judge:  “Did you drop a load of sheisse on the corpse?”
J.H.C.B.:  “Good GOD no!  I’m a religious man!”
Judge:  “Fair enough.  The court orders the F.I.P.’s grandchildren to pay for J.H.C.B.’s bicycle damage. Case dismissed.”

Ok, maybe I should graduate from blogging to writing plays.  The dialog just flows out of my keyboard like butter on hot Georgia asphalt.

I digress.  Assholes.  They are a protected bunch of spastic, muscular orifices.  Every time I witness a red-faced Deutschbag on a bike screaming at some hapless elderly couple for straying into the Sacred Bikeway to Heaven I can feel them moving up on The List.  Right before I eventually leave Berlin permanently I will tally up all of the names on The List and provide you with the name of the Biggest Deutschbag and publish it here.  Cyclists are crawling up The List all the time.

Cyclists are heavily protected by law.  The city of Berlin rarely bothers to make a separate bike lane between street and sidewalk—a sensible solution embraced by the rest of the world.  Instead, recently a fresh splash of red other than the blood of some of the slower pedestrians hit the bike lanes:  Corner-to-corner painted lanes all along Schoenhauser Allee.  This only encourages the bastards and gives them more balls than their carefully-selected cycling shorts.  Today I witnessed a proud, arrogant, sweaty pair of these neue ballchen in action.  An installer’s work van had to stop suddenly while turning right on a side street.  Another motorist was pulling out of a parking space and the van had no choice but to use the brakes (unlike Berliner cyclists, who pay up to 2000 EUR for bikes with faggy little child’s bike bells and no brakes whatsoever).  This unfortunate motorist did not get out and paint a caricature of The Prophet on the side of his van, but his sacrilege was the same: his van sat motionless smack dab in the middle of the newly-painted bicycle crosswalk (fuck, I wish pedestrians had those). A Berliner cyclist blowing along the sidewalk like greased lightning hit that corner at 50 km/h, expecting to see pedestrian and motor vehicle part like the Red Sea before his Mosesian ass.  When this didn’t happen, His Royal Mounted Deutschbagishness slammed on his bike brakes (apparently for the first time) and spewed forth the kind of Deutsch screeching that made Hitler famous. The profanity began to fly.  The cyclist, who resembled one of those scrawny, nerdly Moby males you see all over Berlin, proceeded to bang on the side of the van with his open hand.  In an alternate universe (maybe NYC), the van doors slid open, the workers selected their lead pipes and beat seven shades of sheisse out of the cyclist.  Here on Planet Berlin, however, the van simply burned rubber getting out of the way of the nerd on his scrawny metal steed.

I live in the breeder capital of Europe:  Prenzlauer Berg.  I read that there are nearly 400,000 bicycles on the streets of Berlin.  At the same time.  And given that P’berg wombs push more screaming little payloads into prams and into streets than half of the Third World combined, you can imagine the inevitable daytime soap opera just waiting to pop:  The screaming cyclist meets the waddling mother-and-pram.  This is what scientists refer to as “Unstoppable force meets immovable object.”  I bear witness to this law of nature. Once I saw a Cyclist vs. Breeder smackdown on the same corner mentioned above. The screams flew from breeder and cyclist alike.  Nobody moved.  I had time to go up to my flat, pop some corn, butter and salt it, and return to the scene of the drama, which was still in progress. 

Friday, October 28, 2011

Dunkin' Berliner is a Big Fat Whore

Yes, ladies and gentle readers, I have officially placed my ass on the auction block. To whit: I have turned this here free word smithery into an ad-ridden neon hell hole.  And my hole is for sale to anyone who clicks on any of the ads on this page.

Why in the flying fuck did you do it, db?  Well, in two years only two people clicked on the 'buy me a donut' button (thanks Mom and Old High School Buddy).  I was starting to feel unappreciated.  Even the comments were becoming fewer and farther between.  The economy is rough.  The devil made me do it.  I blame the boooooooze!  From now on, you will see 'relevant ads' splashed all over this blog like bodily fluids in a bar toilet.

I did it for another reason:  comic value.  When I write a post about donuts, I should expect a Dunkin' Donuts ad to magically appear below my post, beckoning my followers into her glazed and sparkly den of donut iniquity. But since most of my posts are about Deutschbags, sheisse and generally heinous humor, I can't wait to see the resulting 'relevent' ads.  Deutschbag posts should be followed by Deutsche Bahn train promotions and sheisse posts should be followed by some equally shitty advertisements.

Either way, click on an ad and make this whore happy.  I get a penny a click or some dumbass amount, so if you can't afford to send me a buck for a freakin' donut, by all means, pay a whore a compliment and click me, baby.  Click me REEEEEEEAAAAALLLLLLL GOOOOOOOOOOOD.


Thursday, October 27, 2011

Germany Inefficiency and Lazy Berlin Delivery Men

Or:  "I Got Yer Package:  RIGHT HERE."

I just had to tell a Deutschbag to go fuck himself.  Yes, I tend to over-react emotionally in all sorts of situations where most normal people would simply keep a stiff upper lip and bend over and take the sheisse.  But I'm not normal people (scroll down through the past posts and say "yup").

By now we all have figured out the Berlin is not Germany; it's more of an island of poor in a rich country, a chaotic, spastic lily pad in the otherwise still lagoon, and many more metaphors I have yet to think up.  So flush your stereotypes of 'German Efficiency' right down the no-standing-while-pissing shelf toilet and hitch a ride on the inefficiency express.

Enter:  delivery deutschbag.  "Package for Herr Hasenpfeffer."
db: "Not here.  Note doorbell.  Not Hasenpfeffer."
dd: "But do you know where HH is?"
db: "No, sorry."
dd: "Then can you take this package for him?"
db:  "Ummm.  Just said I don't know the fella.  Why in HELL would I take a package for someone I don't know?"
dd:  "But I can put a note in his mailbox and you can bring it to him."
db:  "You know where his mailbox is, know he's in the building, and want ME TO DO YOUR JOB FOR YOU?"
dd:  "JaWOHL."

The dialog above has been slightly fictionalized for theatrical purposes, but this rant/spleen vent/whinge is all to say that there seems to be a serious problem with Deutsche Delivery Dudes in my 'hood.  I understand that in an uberefficient world, there would be flat numbers, floor levels and colorful maps next to each name on the buzzer/mailbox.  But after about 44 different DDDs from a half dozen delivery companies asked me to hold their plain, light brown, sweaty packages I just had to cry 'BULLSHEISSE!' and let slip the dogs of db.

I'm thinking that there's only a dozen flats in our building.  I'm also thinking that it would take the DDDs all of 5 minutes to investigate all 3 flats on all 4 levels to find their Herren and Frauen.  Lazy fuchsen. Better yet:  HEY!  Here's an idea:  your company delivers to this building every single business day of the year. WRITE DOWN THE NAMES OF THE PEOPLE/FLATS AND GIVE IT TO YOUR FUCKING DRIVERS FOR FUCK'S SAKE.

End of rant.

This particular DDD today happened to be the last in a long line of lazy fux who ring my bell, dragged me away from my kung fu theater flix and hit me with their deutschbaggery.  I had to yell at him and tell him to go fuck himself, this is true.  But in my defense, this occurred right after I politely refused to hold his package and he stormed off muttering in a pissed off tone. THAT's when he got the business end of my foul mouth.


Monday, October 3, 2011

Eating Berliners in Grand Style

I'm sorry:  2 months since my last blog post.  I blame the total lack of Berliner jelly donuts in my diet.  It really is difficult to get my fix:  wake up with bars of light burning through the slats in the window shades into my red eyes.  Check the clock:  DAMN.  Missed the window.  If you don't hit the window of donut opportunity you are SCREWED.  Nothing worse than walking bleary-eyed and bed-headed several blocks to your donut dealer--only to find they are completely out of Berliners.  This happens sometime between 10am and 11am.  Bastards.  "Would Herr Berlinermunchenmensch like a piece of cake instead?" the nice donut lady might ask.  "Would you like me to rip your lungs out through your NOSE?"  I might reply.  No, really:  if you are hooked on Coca-Cola (or some other evil chemical substance), would you settle for DIET?  Didn't think so, Sunshine.

So without my donut panacea to sooth my violent tendencies, I've fallen into different/normal patterns and rituals.  Like work.  Suddenly, as if getting up before 10am mattered for an Artiste, I suddenly got a pile of photography work.  And by a pile, I mean one of those types of months wherein I work every day without pause for a donut day off.  Hence the lack of my favorite drug.

So you can imagine my surprise when, upon finishing the morning sessions of a Berlin conference in a fancy-shmancy hotel (Grand Westin), I saw a beam of light pierce the hotel skylight, miss my bleary red eyes and light up the biggest slice of Heaven a donut muncher can behold:  pristine plates FULL of little mini-Berliners.  Sure, this was a French company holding the conference, but NO, the hotel wasn't going to give them croissants.  When in Berlin, do as the Berliners do:  roll up them there sleeves and dig into the donuts.  Yes, in the photo you may see some OTD (other than donuts), some kinda Fancee Frawnch FrittAIRS or something, but fret not:  the Berliners outnumbered the fritters 2 to 1.

While these hotel mini-drugs weren't the same as the lard peddled by my local pusher at Siebert (There are no better jelly donuts on the planet.  Really), at least I could take as many as I wanted for free and not be forced to stand in a queue and be told that there was No Joy in Donutville and have to be jailed for ripping a nice woman's lungs out through her nose.

I'll try to get back to y'all soon with more violent, drug-and-donuts-addled stories soon.  In the meantime, I also got paid to write about Berlin beach bars.  Well ain't that a hoot?

Wednesday, July 27, 2011


In the true spirit of the uberliteratii, those of Joycean stature who reinvent the language whenever it bleedin’ well suits them, I offer the following blog post, written (almost) entirely in Pseudo-Deutsch, a language composed of equal parts bier and schwein, just like the Deutschbags who speak it.  And as always with any Germanic words of more than 4 syllables and 12 letters, look for the root words; apply your decoder ring, and guten apetit!

Das ist mein erste sheisseblog mit alles pseudoDeutschsprechen.  Die bloggen ist uber:

-         Farhtenauslanderbarfen
-         Auslanderhorden befuckenmeinherzlichzitty
-         Auslanderschweinen
-         Pissung und Shittung
-         Die bestestbiergarten und Schweinerei in Berlin

Ein auslandergebarft in mein U-bahnfahrten in die weg das mein haus.  Die grossebarf kommt in mein direktion! Ich!  Ichy!  Das schweinenauslandergebarf rannt in die direction auf mein fuss!  Mein neue shuhe un mein perfektlich uberkleen diskohosen war in danger!  Das is NICHT die erste zeit ich zee die schweinenauslander machen SHEISSE in mein herzlich zitty.  Ebertag ist schweinentag mit auslander.  Warum?  Das ist fakt: alle auslander gestinkt.  Nicht auf bier-und-wurst-gestinken, das ist normal.  Die auslander gestankt von pissung und shittung. Aus dem gutterhausen und die schweinerei kommt die auslander.  NichtsprechenDeutschenschweinen kommt to Berlin und betaken die bestest bier, die wurstschwein und die frauenmitgrossenbusen.

Scheisse!  Auslander RAUS! Sniffenmeinfahrten! Suckenmeinshaft!  Das ist mein zitty, mein schwein, mein frauen und mein bier.  Runst du von Spanien oder Norgeland.  Du art NICHT wilkommen hier.  Also:  Spanien ist besser fur auslander, naturlich!  Und Norgeland, nicht getten mich startet…

This post goes out to all the Nazi Deutschbags who are alive and well in Germany.  They know who they are.  They block MY STREET and march with cops protecting them, they sneer and laugh at foreigners when we walk down the street (saying things loudly like DEUTSCH! when they hear us speaking English) and yell at us when we try to do something simple like buy a fucking train ticket.  Fuck you, Germany.  Time to clean house, bitches.  If you are not part of the solution, you are part of the problem.  Guess you never heard that one because a black man said it.   Word.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

db Community Service #44: Mexican Food Stores in Berlin

At this precise moment my system is completely devoid of donuts and strong, black coffee.  The bad news is that this blog post will contain no satire, comedic rants or bullshit.  It will, however, contain a review of actual cool shit and 0% faggy poetry as per usual.

If you are from a region where a large part of your diet is Mexican food (like California, or maybe Mexico, but there they just call it 'food'), and you are somehow stuck in a region where the spiciest dish on offer is a hot dog with ketchup and a pinch of curry powder, you will no doubt crave spicy food.  Sure, you can be a chump and buy Chio salsa (90% ketchup) and 8 scrawny tortillas made in Belgium for around 8 EUR for the both of them.

Once you've made that mistake, you will then proceed to make the same mistake with all the other overpriced fake Mexican brands on offer.  Then dump a ton of money hitting all of Berlin's 'Mexican' restaurants and leave feeling like all the expat bulletin board posts you've read recommending the places were really written by the restaurants' owners (they are, btw).

Enter Mitte Meer and Pfefferhaus.  Look no further.  I have pesonally tasted and tested these places (though not everything for sale at these stores, that's impossible) and I can therefore give it the db Seal of Approval.  Mitte Meer has a few branches in Berlin; a new one recently opened in P'berg just up the road from me (though it could be in Pankow proper, as I live in the top part of P'berg away from most of the yuppie douchebags).  There you can find in abundance:  real tortilla chips (2 kinds), tortillas (2 sizes), jalapenos, red jalapenos, red salsas, green salsas, picante sauces, refried beans, refried black beans, chorizos of many varieties, and many, many other foods from countries which don't live on kebabs and currywurst.  The best part is the price:  a huge pack of 18 small tortillas = 2 EUR, a large sized tortilla 18 pack = 3.75.  They even give you discounts for buying in volume (30, 40, 50 EUR, etc.).


I'm not sure if it is called Das Pfefferhaus or Die Pfefferhaus, but they do ONLY hot sauces, hotter sauces and ring stinger sauces.  That place is no joke.  They've even got brands of hot sauce called "100% Pain" and "Colon Cleaner."  I haven't tried those, mainly because I'm not a frat boy and I would like to keep some living nerve endings on my tongue and in my colon (just in case).  When you walk into the shop (located directly beneath the Alexanderplatz S-bahn tracks on the Alexa side) you will be greeted by the only living German who likes spice.  I say this because A) I love sweeping generalizations, B) Herr Mann opened up a can of hot sauce whoopass on me.  We sampled several types of sauces from a wide variety of regions:  Caribbean, Floridian, Texan, Mexican, Calfiornian and even some evil shit from Tennessee that was called something like Evil Shit From Tennessee.  As I kept sampling, we anted up on the spice scale with each tasting.  By the time we got to the Habanero line, I was coughing and requesting a sip of water, while he was saying that the next hottest one was his favorite.  Though in retrospect, I didn't see him taste the spicier ones.  He may have been a currywurst sucker in disguise.

Suffice it to say, these two places have enough !ay carumba! to keep your tongue flapping while you fall into Johnny Cash's infamous burning Ring of Fire.

Mitte Meer:

Wednesday, June 1, 2011


The theme to “Attack of the Killer Tomatoes” was running through my head as I read the news:  Germans are stuffing cucumbers into their mouths, ruminating, swallowing, digesting, expelling-bloodily-out-the-wazzoo, then, sometimes, dying.  This is the Dunkin’ Berliner Way™ of saying the E .Coli has hit the fan and nobody is safe.

I’ve never been a big fan of veggies.  Even years ago when some crazy hippie girlfriend talked me into being a vegetarian, I mainly ate french fries and beer.  And donuts.  If someone would say to me “Dude!  You KNOW that donuts are fried in animal fat and what the HELL are you doing?!”  I would then rip their liver out and serve it with a nice Chianti.  I was a shitty vegetarian.

I digress.  How did I get from Killer Cucumbers to jelly donuts?  Rhetorical question.  Oh yeah:  so the other day I was getting my weekly kebab from Tayfun’s Bistro on Schoenhauser Allee near Wisbyer str. (I recommend it.  E. Coli free since 1989) and noticed they had none of the usual sliced cucumbers in their salad buffet line up.  If I were still suffering from delusions of vegetarianism, I might have said ‘WTF!  How can I like, get my like, falafel without cucumbers, dude!’  Fortunately, I’ve always hated cucumbers anyway (and most other raw veggies for that matter) so I am in no real danger of dying.  So I asked the kindly kebabman to sling piles of cayenne pepper into my kebab to induce bloody diarrhea in lieu of the lack of properly-tainted E. Coli cucumbers.  I totally appreciated the substitution.  And WOW! what a spicy kebab!!!  No, I really ate a kebab with a fistful of cayenne pepper just the other day.  This concludes the factual part of the blog.  We now continue with the comedic rant/satire portion of the blog, already in progress.

Some Germans just don’t get it.  First the Deutschbags on High played the Blame the Spain Game and managed to cripple Spain’s entire economy (apparently veggies, salsa, salsa dancing and Being Chased by the Bulls represent the entire economy of Spain) by suggesting that the Evil Killer Cucumbers were sent from Spain due to some ancient grudge incurred by some ancient treaty which wasn’t honored.  Ok, I made that up.

Germans REALLY don’t get it:  today at the REWE market, piles of plastic wrapped cucumbers stared up at me like some deliberate, phallic fuck you to common sense.  Like, HELLO? We are in NORTHERN GERMANY.  And the people dying from the Killer Cucumbers are in NORTHERN GERMANY.  But that won’t stop the steady march of Capitalist farmers from peddling their deadly wares on an unsuspecting P’berg neighborhood.  Apparently by wrapping them in plastic and putting a sticker on the cucumbers which proclaimed ‘NICHT aus SPANIEN!!!’ that people would still buy them.  Hell, if they wanted total safety they should have ditched the plastic wrap in favor of cucumber condoms.

The lady in line in front of me had not one but two cucumbers in her basket at the checkout stand.  I was just thinking ‘GUT GOTT, woman!!  How can you buy this?  Don’t you read the news???’  Then she turned around and I saw that she had other more pressing problems.  She had a hard face lined with years of abuse, alcohol, drugs, men/women or other types.  She glared at me as if she was reading my mind and presented the stern face of consternation which lines the face of all Berliners who live on sauerkraut and booze.  I then realized that the potential threat of death by bloody diarrhea was the LEAST of this woman’s problems.  And that maybe, just maybe, she had no intention of eating those sanitized, wrapped-in-plastic cucumbers, monster sized.  God DAMN, I’m a dirty fucker.

Friday, May 27, 2011

American Refugees

‘I have an idea that some men are born out of their due place. Accident has cast them amid certain surroundings, but they have always a nostalgia for a home they know not. They are strangers in their birthplace, and the leafy lanes they have known from childhood or the populous streets in which they have played, remain but a place of passage. They may spend their whole lives aliens among their kindred and remain aloof among the only scenes they have ever known. Perhaps it is this sense of strangeness that sends men far and wide in the search for something permanent, to which they may attach themselves. Perhaps some deep-rooted atavism urges the wanderer back to lands which his ancestors left in the dim beginnings of history. Sometimes a man hits upon a place to which he mysteriously feels that he belongs. Here is the home he sought, and he will settle amid scenes that he has never seen before, among men he has never known, as though they were familiar to him from his birth. Here at last he finds rest.’

 -W. Somerset Maugham, "The Moon and Sixpence," Ch. L

I posted this quote in the beginning of the rollicking tour de force that is the Dunkin' Berliner Blog.  The only thing I have to add is this: you can also remain an alien in whatever land(s) you settle in..  All you have to do is shut the fuck up and not talk to anybody.

Yes, I'm an anti-social fucker.  I prefer the companionship of jelly donuts to most of the people I meet. Misanthrope?  Maybe.  I think 'we who have lived outside our native countries for many years' (expat, shmexpat--I'm a refugee, mutha fucka) are tired of other expats most of all.  At least I am.  I stumbled into the Prater biergarten last night around 10pm and the joint was hopping.  Every table was occupied and you could barely hear a German word spoken.  If Al Qaeda wanted to rain down any of their monkey religion savagery on "Western Infidels", this would be one of the places (only not when I'm there.  If you read this and do that shitty thing you do in the name of your stupid fucking made up 'god' I will personally arrive in your afterlife and sew up all 72 virgins so you will have to remain a total jerk off for all of eternity.  No Sand Monkeys in MY fucking biergarten.  You've been warned.)

I digress.  I joined a table with an expat friend.  The Questions immediately ensued.  Which brings me to the point of this blog post:  What is the expat question you hate the most?

A)  Where are you from?
B)  How long have you been here?
C)  What do you do?
D)  And do you actually make money with that?
E)  All of the above.

The winner of today's poll will receive my personal accolades, personal mention and I'll hit the like button on yer fb page, even if it is some hokey New Age Bollox like yoga n shit.


This blog was brought to you by the Fund For Angry White Guys Abroad and the Navy Seals.  "Navy Seals:  Opening Up Economy Sized Cans of Whoop Ass since 1961!(tm)"

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

The Hoff

I don’t know if they call him Das Hoff or Die Hoff in Germany.  And I don’t really care.  Sure, he prefers to eat his hamburgers commando style – down and dirty drunk on the floor like a Saigon whore.  He drove a car with more brains than him on an 80s TV show and the teen girls ripped his clothes off and fainted at the mere sight of The Hoff’s sweaty shag carpet chest.  He was the male bimbo lifeguard in a veritable sea o’beach babes in the ludicrously successful Bay Watch. I’ve glanced at TVs in Czech Republic, Romania, Bulgaria, Lithuania, Slovakia and Germany and they all played dubbed versions of Baywatch.  You can turn on a TV set in a hotel anywhere in the world and you will see Bay Watch.  The Hoff is everywhere you want to be, six hours before you get there.

My Hoff Awareness was marginal at best before I moved to Berlin.  I didn’t think I would have to worry about various aspects of my sheisse culture following me here. I thought that Berliners would be urban sophisticates and cynical world citizens.  Nope.  Mostly white trash breeders and wearers of mullets and shitty jeans, Berliners are.  Either that or a bunch of fucking techno-weenie faggots with bad fashion addictions. Now now, if you are a Berliner and you are reading this, don’t be offended, you are probably not from Berlin.  Nobody is.  Except maybe Kennedy.  Everyone else in Berlin is but a tourist hoping to come to Berlin and be something, do something, get something, steal something—maybe a brief glance of The Hoff.   Yes, The Hoff is a ridiculous parody of the worst pop culture has to offer us.  But HE SANG AT THE BERLIN FUCKING WALL WHEN IT FELL (or shortly thereafter, there was no YouTube or facebook back then, mind you).  A Hoff discussion started in an expat group on a train leaving Berlin into the countryside.  “The Hoff is huge is Germany,” one of the group said.  “Do you think those giggling German kids over there are listening to The Hoff on their Ipods right now?” I asked.  We agreed that they probably were.  You wouldn’t think spastic, giggly teens would listen to has-been Germo-American pop stars, but you would be surprised.  Just look at the video for “Du” by The Hoff.  Near the end of the song he is practically raped by barely pubescent girls.  Apparently they like to lay their weary heads on a heaving chest full of sweaty man carpet.  And what Berliner teen wouldn’t?  Girl or boy?

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Descending into the Seedy Underbelly of Berlin ... sort of

We went to the Leather Club to find a strap-on full leather gimp suit for our dog.  It’s a sausage dog, so the dimensions would have to be just right.  We pushed through the heavy plastic vertical slats that you would find in any meat locker or a leather shop in Berlin and into the leather accessories section.  We looked at the usual bondage masks with the zipper-faces and ball-gag mouth pieces.  We checked out the garden variety leather-and-steel-ringed penis sheaths and giant black double dongs.  We were starting to think this place was just way too gay for our hound dog.

“Why don’t we just take four of those leather ringy penis thingy sheaths and just put one on each of the dog’s legs?”  I ventured.

“No,” she said, “those things are black leather and the dog is black.  You wouldn’t even see the fucking things against his fur.”

“But they’ve got the silver ringy thingy and…”


We descended further down the rabbit hole.  In the next room there was a mini bar.  We each grabbed a bottle of beer before wading through the art fags who had gathered for the art show that was going on (incidentally) at the Leather Club while we happened to be shopping for our Full Doggie Jacket.

“Fear,” the barman said.

“No, I’m not afraid.  I’ve seen this shit before in S.F.  Giant black double dongs don’t even raise my eyebrow any more.”

“He said vier,” the guy next to him said, “Four Euro for the beers.”

“Cute dog by the way,” he added.

We gave up on asking for the doggie section.  Clearly these fags were way too conservative for the kind of canine costuming we had in mind.  Another back room separated by yet another wall of those heavy plastic vertical slats.  We had just watched a b movie about a missing girl and a sex dungeon with hallways and rooms separated by these exact same clear plastic curtain slats.  Fucking rabbits and their fucking holes.

The next room was a small boxed-in section of a corridor leading further down the rabbit hole.  A small group of college-aged girls sat on a leather bench talking, drinking and smoking.  A gay fuck film was projected on the wall above them.  They were completely oblivious and unimpressed.  We walked on.  The maze continued.  There were dozens of side compartments and ante rooms with the same redundant vertical plastic barriers.  Some had benches and ropes.  Others had handcuffs and small beds with handcuffs on the posts.  It’s just not enough for some people to render a simple ass pounding.  Apparently some people need the Gimp from Pulp Fiction and a bed with a set of handcuffs.  There were buckets in each room and the little woman wondered what they were for and I didn’t EVEN wanna go there.

Deeper down the hole we saw a back room with more rooms and a couple of gay guys standing around.  I got the words ‘hinter’ and ‘nicht’ and some head shakes.  We get it.  No straights allowed.  We left the den of iniquity with our dog just as we had walked in.   The dog looked up and wagged his tail.  He would get no leather action that night.

*photo taken from a website far more depraved than this here blog

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Famous Donut Munchers

I believe the Secret to Life(tm) is to find some little unimportant thing that you love, then proceed to love it absolutely.  I loves me my berliner jelly donuts.  I gotsta have them at least once per week or I would not go on living.  Shit, I'd eat them every damn DAY, but if I did, I would not go on living.

Here are some of my favorite donut quotes of all time.  One of them I just heard last night:

"Personally, I think some things are our own choice and some things are predetermined.  Let me give you an example: if I walk into a donut shop I do so out of free will. But once I am there, it is my destiny to eat every single jelly donut they have."

- Craig Ferguson, late night talk show host

"Donuts.  Is there anything they CAN'T do?"

- Matt Groening, The Simpsons

"I owe it all to the little chocolate donuts."

- John Belushi

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Meet the Street

I’ve been stalking an individual quite by accident.  I didn’t set out to be obsessed; it just followed naturally.  First I took notice, then I started taking photographs, discreetly at first, then more planned and executed.  Then I found out the name of my subject was just an Alias.

You can see the works of street artist ‘Alias’ all over Berlin.  His works are fresh but familiar, political without being arrogant, and invasive while still within the context of the environment.  If you’ve lived in Berlin for a while you may have seen his works.  I’ve even used some shots of his work in previous blogs when I’ve run out of pics of donuts or beer.

I’ve always been fascinated by urban decay.  I’ve taken so many pictures of cracking walls, peeling paint, chipped bricks and rusty metal to completely reconstruct a 20th century city completely from my images.  I’m drawn to the way that the Earth takes it all back in spite of the best construction materials we can stack in stony rows.  In the midst of all of this decay, some no-talent kids like to steal a spray can or two and leave their mark—like dogs pissing on each wall they pass.  Others make it a point to beautify their environment, to cover the corrosion with the bright colors of a vivid imagination.  These people are street artists, and should in no way be associated with common taggers and vandals.  A street artist uses the cityscape as his gallery, effectively bypassing the entire nepotistic and ego driven ‘what is art’ gallery world largely run by elitists.

Alias is one such street artist.  He works with stencils based on photographs; he applies these stencils and paper stickers in amusing locations and vanishes.  The image can be of a boy sitting on a bomb, a boy morphing into a cat or—one of my favorites: a screaming woman with the words ‘Don’t be afraid, it’s only gentrification!’

A while back I went to the opening night of an Alias exhibition of new paintings entitled ‘My Belly Is Mumbling.'  Apparently when he is not spraying and pasting up city walls, Alias plies his trade in more tried and true venues.  At the show I wondered if Alias would show his face, since the legal status of street art is dubious at best.  At the West Side Gallery, I was pleased to see a variety of well-executed Alias pieces committed to canvas, wood and rusty metal doors.  This gave the effect of viewing pieces which were ripped from the city walls and brought into the gallery.

The place was abuzz with the usual art people and fashion victims.  We sat and wondered if Alias was lying low, incognito in the midst of his audience, hiding just stage left of the spotlight.  Maybe it’s the guy with all the girls and booze around him seated on the couch.  Perhaps it’s the quiet dude with the paint-spattered pants leaning on a pillar.  We went to the gallery mini bar for a drink and plied the barman for information.  “Is Alias here?  Do you know him?”

To which the barman replied, “No…um…maybe….ummm…would you like a drink?”

For info on the upcoming Alias show:

A Flickr Alias group with more Alias art than you can shake a stick at:

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Chinese Hot Pot: DIY Grub

In some of the more Westernized Asian restaurants, a single chef and/or his team will prepare your food right in front of you.  Often they will fling food and swing blades in the air and make Kung Fu sounds while your shrimp does a swan dive into its oily grave.  Others will chop suey your meat and veggies with all the pomp and circumstance of the Cirque du Soleil.  Generally all of this is overpriced shit for yuppie scum who value the illusion of personal servitude.

Enter: A Berlin-Charlottenburg Restaurant with Chinese Hot Pot, or the Ikea of the Asian restaurant world.  You see, they make you assemble and cook your food yourself.  Genius.  They bring you a gas powered pot divided into two swampy-looking sections of bubbling soup.  Then they bring you piles of raw meat:  fish, shrimp, beef, chicken, pork, mystery meat and more mystery meat.  You are then expected to chuck it into the boiling brine and fish it out with a wire scoop. Don’t get me wrong, I like new cultural experiences, brave new cuisine choices and anything that is not fast food.  That said, I am the single pickiest eater I have ever met.  I hate almost everything that people consider normal, so when I saw the mound of meat next to the two sections of bubbling stew—one white, one brownish red—I had to fight the inner redneck in me which wanted to shout ‘FUCK THIS SWAMP WATER!!! BRING ME SOME FRIED YAK DICK!!!’

So I went with the old standard hot and sour chicken (sadly, they were fresh out of the fried yak dick), which was very similar to the breaded and fried chicken mix with veggies and sauce that you would get in any Chinese restaurant in America.  I’m a culinary chicken, yes, but I got to watch my dining comrades who had ordered the Asian Ikea Meal trying to figure out what the hell to do with the little elbow wrench and the slabs of particle board.  I watched them poke at the mystery meats, dunk, boil, scoop and eventually eat them.  I was comfortably ensconced in my safety net of Plate #22 with rice and a beer, watching with amusement as everyone else was reading the instructions with their meal.   In this case the instructions took the form of the friendly waitress, who was warning people to cook the food at least 5 minutes or else you would—according to her pantomime—make a strange face and rub your torso from the chest down to the pelvis.

One of the Czechs at the table was commenting on the authenticity of the meal, saying to the waitress that he had visited Shanghai, Shaolin and Shoop Shoop (Do Wop). After receiving the approval of our waitress, he pointed out to me that the menu was so authentic that they even had one menu item scrawled in pen in Chinese characters at the bottom of the bill of fare.

“Um, do you think,” I ventured a question, “that the dish written only in Chinese is Sweet and Sour DOG?”


Thursday, January 20, 2011

German Toilets, Emasculation and Film School for Scheisse Videos

It was only a matter of time before I broached the subject.   I was going to breach the subject, break on through to the other side; leave it leaking, as it were.  But my deliberate malapropisms merely confuse people.  Perhaps it’s the redneck accent in which I deliver the news.

I’m avoiding again; sorry.  Okay:  shit, piss, pinkel and sheisse.  There, I’ve gone and said it.  I’ve had to drink and eat large amounts of beer and donuts while living in Berlin.  As a result, I’ve had to look at the ridiculous sticker on my toilet lid for quite a while now:  the silhouette of the peeing man with the line through him, the ‘don’t pee standing’ sticker, or the ‘keinenpinkelnbestandungschweinhund’ as it simply said in simple German.  Of course this must have been left by the previous tenants, no doubt a fine German family of upstanding social status and non-standing pissing status, a family with a large, strong woman who beat her poor, emasculated-post-war-Moby-maybe-man with her terrible swift loo brush.

Then someone told me that it was normal for German men to sit down while peeing, that it was necessary to avoid the splash of urine onto the sacred seat above.  Right.  The country known for its uber-efficiency in ALL OTHER THINGS designed this paltry device:  The Trophy Toilet.  It’s that peculiar flat shelf directly in the center of the toilet where normally there would be a wide open space full of a gallon of water.  It’s what we in the West have been using since the barn and the outhouse.  We went directly from crapping in a hole in the ground to the Powerflush 2000.  I once read that a measure of a culture is in the way it deals with its waste products.  A lot can be said about a culture which moves too quickly.  Perhaps we missed a great deal of culture when we decided that it was better to mask, drown and dispose of our waste as quickly as possible.  Maybe the Germans were onto something when they decided to keep their waste hovering directly below the lid for easy inspection and diagnosis of all the nut and corn content of their fibrous feces.

Sure, it had to be a logical, medical, holistic reason that the flat shelf was there, hoisting my gawdawful anal progeny high above the low water mark where it can choke me with the stench, or when standing to pee, splash back with a thrust in direct proportion to the amount of beer I had consumed.  There can be no other explanation for this uber-inefficiency, this blatant disregard for culture from the culture who gave us so much, y’know….culture.  UNLESS…

American Culture Answers German Culture: The South Park German Sheisse Video.

[person speaking German on "cliteris" website]
Kyle: Dude, it's a lady getting pooed on!
Stan: Whoa! Is it Cartman's mom?
Cartman: Oh, very funny!
Kyle: Hey! It IS Cartman's mom!
Mrs. Cartman: [man speaking German on computer] All righty then!
Cartman: SON OF A BI...
Cartman: AHHH!
Ike: [bounces in] Ba ba ba ba.
Kyle: Get out of here, Ike. You're too young for this stuff!
Ike: Bullshit.
Stan: What's she doing now?
German: Essen meine scheisse.
Mrs. Cartman: Okey-dokey!
Kyle, Stan, Cartman: [they see something gross] AWWWWWW!
Stan: [pukes] Click it off, dude, click it off!
[Kyle clicks it off]
Stan: Dude, what the fuck is wrong with German people?

I am not educated enough to tell you why the Germans can give us buttloads of composers, philosophers and all of modern psychology and NOT give us a proper fucking toilet.  But I’m just going to assume that German men are not all emasculated, simpering fools who sit down each and every single time they have to take a piss.  I don’t believe that the treaty that ended the war had the clause “and you shall give up your arms, weapons, military bases, delusions of Aryan grandeur, nationalism and the God given right for your men to stand up to urinate from here on out.”

I am starting to be convinced that the Germans LOVE their sheisse--and not just because it made it all the way over to South Park, U.S.A.


Kackel Dackel, the crapping daschund toy for KINDER!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Douchebags and Donuts: A Little Leary

I am now chock full o’donuts and coffee.  I always want my goddamned donuts on Monday, but the Deutschbags at my favorite bakery (Siebert Konditorei, the finest bakery in P’berg and possibly Berlin, reviewed by my damn self here) like to close for THREE FUCKING DAYS.  Saturday, Sunday and Monday there is no joy in Donutville; the commies take a long weekend.  So on Tuesdays I overcompensate, jamming about 3 of those tasty fuckers down my gullet, washed down with a SECOND large cup of Turkish coffee.  And let me tells ye:  I make coffee strong enough to kill an African Bull Elephant on crack.  It is basically 4 heaping spoons of the strongest espresso I can buy, thrown into a bowl-sized cup with boiling water; stir thoroughly.  Et voila:  productive human.

Well, wired and goofy anyway.  I just watched the latest episode of The Daily Show with Jon Stewart; Denis Leary was his guest.  He was double plugging his new toilet reading book AND his upcoming stand up special “Douchebags and Donuts.”  A man after my own heart, I must say.  Not because I am a donut muncher of clinically dangerous proportions, not because his use of the words ‘douchebag’ and ‘donuts’ together is strangely similar to a Dunkin’ Berliner rant about Deutschbags and donuts (every other blog post, really), but because I happened to be munching on my donuts while watching him do his shtick.  Not planned, just one of those random moments of epiphany; a moment of clarity that donutoholics refer to as ‘total fucking coincidence.’

I am curious how Leary’s latest rants will be handed down to us mere mortals.  After a decade of his bad self getting famous ranting on the joys of cigarettes, on being an asshole, and being accused of stealing Bill Hick’s style and stuff—I just wanna see if donuts are the new cigarettes.  Cuz, y’know, I’m curious like.  I would like to imagine loads of people clicking on the ‘buy me a donut’ link (above right, hint hint) so much that my local commie bakery would be FORCED to stay open all weekend AND Mondays just to keep up with the new demand.  I would also welcome many stories of donut addiction, treatment centers, condolences on my ‘affliction’ and spam about a miracle cure to donutoholism.

But really I’m just hoping someone will say “HEY, LEARY!!!  You stole your routine from Dunkin’ Berliner!”