Category Archives: History-ish

Accidental trip to wonderland

Once upon a time, under a government long-fallen, there was an amusement park in Berlin. Yes, even Communists amused themselves. I’d known the park was there, had walked past many times, but there are a lot of ruins in Berlin. If I just … Continue reading

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The Berlin Wall: still dividing after all these years

You ever been talkin’ to some person in maybe a bar or somewhere…this is another American you’re talkin’ to…and somehow something about the Civil War comes up, and you realize they have a very different take on the same history, they … Continue reading

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The Youth is a Ghost, Haunting my Falafel Research:

 South Sudanese independence…”We are all Egyptians”…Gentrifizierung NO, or a  Brave New Squatter-free Berlin…and some damn-good chickpeas, a peanut sauce. As a professional falafel controller, I read the store-front window advertising a rare style and was compelled to investigate. I was excited to find something new…and perhaps owners … Continue reading

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A fairytale of the Berlin Wall: August 13, 1961 and the Big Bad Line

Things had been kind of nervous in Berlin, since the day two months before when the leader of the GDR, Walter Ulbricht, had sort of spilled the beans in answer to a reporter’s question: The Allies had formed a state. Would the Soviets … Continue reading

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May Day in Berlin

 May Day in Berlin. Based in whatever dancing-gayly-around-the-May-Pole pagan history, for more than a hundred years May Day in Berlin is the holiday where you express your political philosophy. Even if that is having no political philosophy. May Day means ‘take this day and … Continue reading

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Plattenbau, “Torn Asunder”

What happens when a million and a half people leave a city? Detroit is learning this, New Orleans learned some about this a few years back, and twenty years ago Berlin wrote the book. Actually, twenty years ago, when the wall … Continue reading

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Color in a Plattenbau world part II

 Give an Ossi paint….and watch out, boy.  Geez. I have a theory…and let me say first, the theory is pretty offensive, really–it belittles the struggle of hundreds of thousands oppressed by secret police and living behind a barbed-wire and machinegun-rife wall finally saying, enough … Continue reading

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