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Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Told you so...

Here’s another patented ridiculously long introduction that has very little to do with the actual point of this entry:

Six long years ago, the very first time that I came to Hamburg – like seriously within the first few weeks or so that I was here – I was walking to the central station with Karyn and Sheya. It was part-"lovely stroll", part- "we’re kinda lost". We were having a good time and chatting it up in English, when a group of young guys walked by and asked (also in English), "Hey do you know what time it is?" Karyn and I kept walking, saying nothing. Sheya answered, "7:30pm"

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"7:30? Time for fucking!" was the reply she received.

It was funny, because she basically just walked right into that one and from that day on, 7:30 was known as "time for fucking" and quite often we would use it as a reference point for other times...e.g. "two hours until it’s time for fucking" meant that it was 5:30pm.

Anyhow, the lesson is... talking to strangers is (i.d.R) pretty much always a bad idea, but sometimes it can make for a good story. Like for instance, how I found myself in a conversation last Thursday night with a homeless man in front of the McDonald's next to the Hoheluftbrücke subway station. He asked for a light, I ended up hearing way too much about his life story.

I would have walked away but 1.) he was crying 2.) he kept talking about how he was going to stab the other homeless guys panhandling around the entrance to the station, because they were making fun of him. So, I inched my way towards the door of the McDonald's where many people could see me and just let him talk until I found an appropriate moment to say, "Here's some change, I gotta go."

Sunday evening I was on my way to meet up with Buche and managed to get myself kind of turned around, which really isn't at all new anymore. So, I did what I normally do in these types of situations – I walked in the wrong direction trying to find someone to ask for help, while waiting for Buche to figure out that I got lost and give me a call.

Then I heard the magic words, "Hey...Sistah..."

Ok, they aren't exactly magic words, but quite familiar and I knew at the very least, I could ask this gentleman for directions and at the most I'd get an inapropriate, but strangely self-esteem boosting complement about my ass...

I prefer it much more than the German equivalent, "Du, Raven (insert bad news here)."

Anyway, I turn around and the guy said something that really caught me off guard, so much so, that I asked him to repeat it and he goes,

"Hey Sistah, did you forget about Black History Month?“

and I shook my head slowly.

then he was like, "Black History Month did not forget about you."

[Brief interruption]: It totally reminded me of that part in Big Trouble in Little China where that dude is like, "China is here, Mr. Burton." And then Kurt Russell is all like, "'China is here?' I don't even know what the hell that means!" [/Brief interruption]

and I go, „Um, ok...?“

So, he told me about Black History Month in Hamburg, which is apparently in March, not February. Amazing!

It was really interesting stuff and he even gave me directions to where I was going, about 5 seconds before Buche called me.

At any rate, I think we should all meet up sometime this month at Martin-Luther-King-Platz and celebrate some black history, Deutschland-style.

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