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Thursday, June 04, 2009

Vacay Report

As I write this entry, Frosty is sound asleep and I have commandeered his new laptop. I'll try to be brief and give you the low down about the past few days.

You see, I am on vacation. A much-needed, well-deserved vacation. Frosty has a week off from university. It's kind of like German Spring Break, but centered around that time those dudes got filled with the Holy Ghost in the Bible. We decided to meet up in Dresden, because Conni (New Year's Eve in Cologne, Conni) was celebrating his birthday this week in a nearby city.

I'd post some pictures of that, but I'm a big idiot that brings a digital camera without a memory card on vacation. To sum it the party:
  • There were a lot of people in their early-20s drinking lots of alcohol
  • I officially suck at every card game on the planet, including Uno.
  • Conni got a set of tight-ass grillz for his teefs
  • At some point in the night (long after I was in bed), a let's-smash-beer-bottles-in-the-kitchen-contest took place
Here's the thing I keep forgetting about dudes in their early 20s: The apex of farting as comedy gold has not yet been reached. Maybe I've just been living with Schmiddy for so long (where unnecessary farting is verboten and necessary farting is highly frowned upon), but I reckon it will take about another two years before passing gas is relegated to the bronze podium at the comedy olympics in this circle.

President Obama will be in Dresden today. The city has made all sorts of interesting decorative choices to welcome him, like stickers that read "Welcome Mr. President" on all of the trams.

I'm curious to see if they managed (or will even attempt) to remove all of the right-extremist NPD (read: neo-nazi) party campaign posters that are hanging up all over the downtown Dresden area (and the rest of the city). Because the first thing I noticed when exiting the Autobahn was a whole bunch of signs hanging high up on lamp posts with the words, "criminal Foreigners Get Out!" Where the word "criminal" is written much smaller on the sign and difficult to see from a distance, much less a moving vehicle. Written above that entire phrase in white-on-red (also not immediately noticeable, not that it matters) is "Tourists welcome!" To put it bluntly, this shit makes me sick to my stomach.

What, so I guess German criminals are welcome?

Foto: Indymedia

Aesthetically-speaking, Dresden is a lovely city and I've met a lot of terrific, open-minded/open-hearted people here. But it's exactly this kind of fuckery that just makes me never ever want to live here ever again. Ever.

Oh well, Frosty is awake now and he's reading over my shoulder, so I've lost my train of thought.
Overall, vacation has been great and only a relatively small portion of it has been spent giving thought to these guys who act like assholes on a professional level. Like it's their job, I guess you could say. And since I personally don't want to be a huge racist asshole, professionally or otherwise, I can say with certainty that they've succeeded in creating a job niche for themselves that (at least) this foreigner has no interest in taking.

Enjoy your stay in the city, Mr. President.


kelley said...

Sooo I guess the only good part is that at least if the sign is in german- most of us criminal foreigners have no idea what it says. Not that bright red and black signs in Germany signal "welcome" but still.

lebrookski said...

well here's the crazy thing. if the two of us were just kicking it in germany, walking down the street together (maybe there's a lull in the conversation and we're not speaking english) then in some cases even though we're both foreigners... the there's a much higher probability (and i know this from experience) that i, as the person of color, is more likely to be assumed to be a foreigner. even crazier still, is that (no offense intended) i speak better german than you (given the fact that you speak...well, little to no german at all).

in this case, one gets the feeling that "foreigner" = "person of color" -- and the criminal part is thrown in because, hey, everybody hates criminals, right? you could probably also make a (much weaker) case regarding why "criminal foreigners" is written in black and "tourists" in white.

you might think it's a bit of a stretch, if you're only looking at this one sign. however, when you see the pamphlets that are stuffed in mailboxes with the words "end multiculturalism" (with the -- i shit you not -- argument that multiculturalism results in violence, criminality and loss of german jobs) and then under all of that a picture of some people of color...well, then...the sentiment becomes more or less crystal clear.