Berlin Wonderland – Wild Years Revisited 1990-1996 is an exhibition designed to promote a new book, that by way of photographs taken in the years immediately following the 1989 fall of the Berlin wall, describes the experiential worlds of those who moved into the districts that were previously nudged up against the West Berlin border.
Dear Future Husband,
you can’t just show up one fine day and say, well here I am, let’s do it.
You know, it takes time to bake a cake.
You can’t just take the ingredients – flour, milk, eggs, butter, sugar, baking powder – throw them in a bowl, and say “Voila, a cake! Let’s eat it.”
This Video is from Nineteen Eighty Nine. Yep, before Nineties, before the Noughties, and before the decade we’re almost halfway through. It’s an interview with a guy called Marc Christian, a former lover of the actor Rock Hudson. Now, Rock Hudson never did overtly come out of the closet, and seemed to be unaware that world actually knew he was gay and dying of AIDS, but that is not the point of this article.
I entered the east bloc for the first time tonight, after being right next to it for 14 years.
My favorite love song in the whole world (apart from the skeletons in my closeted heart: Led Zeppelin’s I’m Gonna Crawl and Since I’ve Been Loving You, Garth Brooks’ Shameless, Depeche Mode’s Enjoy the Silence, Jeff Buckley’s Lilac Wine…OK I’ll stop now ok one more Leonard Cohen’s Take this Waltz) has for thousands of year been Tim Buckley’s Song to the Siren.
Now, I’m sure, dear reader, that you can see a pattern here. These are all loser songs.
First things first – decide to forego all traditional methods so as to fast-track dinner.
Toss a frozen clump of Gnocchi into a pan, add some water, put a lid on it, set the hob on High Heat.
The idea is to smoke a fag, return, turn down the heat on the near-boiling water, and let your dinner simmer itself into a tensile mush.
(I mean, it’s potatoes – what could go wrong) Continue reading
Heat and sunlight pours down onto the gigantic cube. Amiably blocking the flow are the nimbus formations, grey-blue and ponderous, suspended and splendid in the hot blue sky. Continue reading
25. May 2014
Today, at the tender age of 40, I finally did something I have never managed to do my entire life, since achieving the age of majority. At 18 I was an Indian citizen but not in the country at 20, when they had the first General Election I was allowed to vote in. At 25, I was in Australia. At 30, I was a German citizen, but too close to the General Election to be registered to vote. At 35 I was in a part of Spain where time moves at its own pace and the challenge of contacting the Auswärtige Amt (the office for German citizens abroad) in that slow sweet current didn’t just seem impossible, it seemed ridiculous. Last year, back in Germany, around September, as the General Election loomed, I was running pillar to post, trying to secure a job and a flat.
If you say to someone (or someone says to you), things like:
“I’m not ready for a relationship right now”
Guilt = you don’t measure up to someone else’s standards and expectations
Shame = you don’t measure up to your own standards and expectations
Guilt = bad.
Shame = healthy.
Folks, when you buy a new American-style coffee-maker, and rush to use it, do look to see if there is any tape covering the hole from which the coffee is supposed to drip! Else you’ll be spooning coffee out of that conical thing and coffee grounds everywhere, your coffee-maker, your clothes, the kitchen work-table-thing.
Update: The coffee holding thing is removable.
In the year 1995, before there was Google, a woman requested a translation of a German Poem from 1910ish (Weltende by Jakob von Hoddis) into English on a Newsgroup. She didn’t even paste the poem, instead listing several books where one could find the text. In a time when we actually walked to the library, plodded through a lot of cards, went downstairs, got skin-numbing rashes (I always did), and citation-surfed.
Anyway, she got exactly zero replies and the thread died right there.
Nineteen years later, in 2014, as I was trying to Google what the hell expressionist literature is, I stumbled upon her request in a Newsgroups Archive.
When I hear people say ‘I want to settle down’, what I am hearing is ‘I want to get frumpy and paunchy, and wear my sweats everywhere, and make lame jokes that don’t deserve to be laughed at, and fill my day with mundane routines and busywork because I can let myself go with this other person’.
I never want to settle down.
I want to settle in. Continue reading