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Sunday, December 30, 2007

Sick Pimpin Winter Tour 2007: Dortmund

EDIT: For clarification purposes, because I don't have as much editing time when I'm not sitting in front of my own computer. I meant no offense to persons from or currently residing in Dortmund, which is a wonderful I said. My remark "some people might even call it 'fugly'" refers to an incident in which I was walking around Barmbek (another place that I really like, but not everyone is awesome enough to recognize its awesomeness) and my companion at the time (who shall remain nameless, but who lives in a part of Hamburg that I shall refer to as "Schmeppendorf") called my beloved Barmbek "fugly". Do I think Barmbek is fugly? No. Do I think Dortmund is ugly? Hell no. But would some people think otherwise? Perhaps. These people are also called douchebags. And it isn't cool to call Dortmund fugly, and I personally would never do so. I hope this clears up any misunderstanding.

Greetings everyone! This entry is being brought to you from within the confines of The Boy's bedroom, which is in a city that I swore to myself that I would never come back to -- namely Dresden. Oh I am. And to tell you the truth, it's not so bad. I say this because we really haven't left his apartment all that much, so I haven't been fully subjected to the city.

But more about the Dresden part of the trip later. Before I got here, I spent five whole days in Germany's very own "City of Dreams" aka Dortmund aka Schmidt's Hometown. I drove down last Saturday with Wonfuzius (and Tiger and Schmidt's step sister) and the entire time I pretty much stuffed myself full with food.

Shortly after our arrival, Schmidt led us to his favorite Dortmunder Döner joint called Dönermann. Incidentally, Dönermann is located not to far away from a place called Döner König (King), but apparently the difference in either quality/price is remarkable enough to prevent Schmidt from eating at the King's. Anyway...Dönermann offers small, medium and large (or do they skip right to extra large?) Döners to satisfy every level of döner craving. The medium costs €2,80 and (Schmidt will never forgive me if I forget to point this out) is topped with Feta cheese at no extra charge. Amazing right?

(Click Below for More)

Later that evening we went to the Bunkerwelt X-Mas Jam where we saw OnandOn, Terence Chill, Dike D and Creutzfeld & Jakob (not necessarily in that order). The concert itself was awesome, but will forever (or until I see worse) have a distinguished place in my heart as the smallest concert with the most ridiculously disorganized security. When I say "small concert" I don't mean that there weren't a lot of people there, because there were plenty. But they had like Busta Rhymes Concert-type security, which was -- in my humble opinion -- a little over the top and basically resulted in around 400 people being herded through one entrance, two or three people at a time. "Dumb as hell" is the most polite description that comes to mind. However, the actual concert was really good.

The next day, after eating at a pizza restaurant with like 60 different types of pizza (for under 5€), we met up with Cracky McGee, who took us on a tour of an abandoned steel factory. It was definitely more interesting than a regular old museum -- but probably a lot less safe, seeing as how most museums don't have big "DANGER! ENTRY PROHIBITED!" signs on the front door.

If you've known me for awhile, you also know that I don't like participating in activities that involve tresspassing, climbing up unsafe structures, etc. It's not that I'm afraid someone will get hurt -- in my mind, we're all already dead, having plunged to our gruesome deaths. It's not a question of "if" it will happen, but rather "when". Yes, I realize this makes me a big "fraidy cat" -- but you know what? Fuck you is all I have to say to that.

I held out for as long as I could, but after a metal hand railing broke off in my hand because it was completely rusted through, I decided I had tempted the fates long enough and proceded back to the ground.

Next, we visited Cracky McGee's parents. They are very nice people. His mom told us to go see a house covered in Christmas lights. They had a report about it on the local news and she asked me if I had ever seen anything like it (that is, a house covered in lights) before. Yes, yes I had. I'm from the States. But we drove by to see it anyway.

That evening we went to Schmidt's former high school, where an annual "Get-drunk-and-grill-meat-in-the-winter" gathering for former students is held. It was very cold. But the steak, sausage and beer kept me nice and warm.

Der Teigel rolled out his redonkulous portable speaker wagon, which pumped out the Christmas jams. The thing was powered by a car battery (he brought a backup one just in case), had something like 5 built in speakers, exhaust pipes, a horn -- it was a thing of beauty. There was also a live band, which was really good, despite the cold.

At one point some dude decided to get all nekkid and dance. It was...a sight to...see. Some people said that they planned it, seeing as how the dudes were wearing matching underwear. However, I'm not certain, but I think that's sort of a common type of underwear for German dudes of a certain generation...

On Christmas Eve, we explored a bit of Dortmund's downtown area. Dortmund is not what I'd describe as "classically beautiful" -- some people might even call it "fugly" -- but there is some really interesting architecture and the city has an infinitely more interesting character than quite a few of the other cities I've visited in Germany.

We also stopped by Papa Schmidt's to say hi and got to meet Schmidt's Opa (Granddad), as well.

Then it was off to Bochum to eat fondue and open presents with Cracky McGee and family.

All quite self-explanitory.

I had a very long and interesting conversation with Cracky's dad, Heinz McGee, who explained the history and process of book printing. Also, we talked about Mormons. He's quite a talker, but charming.

Afterwards, we opened presents. I got a book about pirates from Wonfuzius; the book Freaks and a cute little stuffed wombat from The Boy. My gift from Schmidt is a microwave for the apartment.

Some pangs of homesickness overwhelmed me, so instead of going with Schmidt and Wonfuzius to a club, I decided to call it a night and hit the hay.

The next day, we were off to Schmidt's aunt and uncle where we ate more food.
Schmidt has a very nice family. I plan to steal them away from him, just like he stole my family from me.

That evening, we went to go see The Life of Brian at a movie theater. I love this movie, but less so in German. The jokes are translated so that they make sense to Germans, which mean they cease to make sense to me -- still, I'm all for Monty Python love, so it was all good.

On Wednesday, I noticed that I was feeling a little sick. At first I was worried that I might have strep throat again, which would have ruined the second part of my trip. But I took it easy that day, pumped myself full of tea and homeopathic medication and slept on the train to Dresden on Thursday.

By the time I arrived, I had a somewhat mild case of the sniffles. Still contagious, though, proven by the fact that The Boy is now also full of snot and slime. He can't say I didn't warn him.

Yesterday, we took a trip to the Czech Republic to get cigarettes and beer. Tomorrow, I'm going to the Sächsische Schweiz with The Boy and his boys for some pre-New Year's Eve festivities.

More pics to come...

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