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Arrogant haircuts June 5, 2006

Posted by BiB in Uncategorized.
I’ve forgotten how to blog, from a combination of combinables: a bit of work, a bit of lethargy, a bit of recreation, a bit of this, a bit of that. So I’m easing myself back in with instructions to go elsewhere (in the politest way possible, of course). The disenfranchised bookseller just so needs a plug for this post. Psyche yourself up for the World Cup well in advance. (Is there any World Cup fever in Berlin? I’m yet to see it.)

Another reason for the posting being thin on the ground of late is guests. Homosexuals from the Big Smoke and we’ve been getting up to all sorts of mischief. (I feel 12. OK, 19.) I’ve got a feeling I might turn into one of the more boring, late-developer characters from a Hollinghurst novel. In a nod to being tourists in Berlin, we made our way to the Carnival of Cultures here yesterday. Did folk go? Too odd. As I emerged from the U-Bahn at Hermannplatz onto the Berlin equivalent of Kilburn High Road, there was a Trinidadian float with folk strutting their stuff and waving (and dropping) flags. “Oh, Notting Hill Carnival,” I thought. They were followed by the Hare Krishna float which had been hijacked by an old loon riding a bike with vegetation attached and then came the Goa float, which was full of 18-year-olds having a rave. On Kilburn High Road! In the rain! The Brazilian float had the blondest and least coordinated Brazilian dancers I’ve ever seen. The Country and Western float was far the most popular, thanks to post-Eurovision Country and Western mania here. I think.

Anyway, this is by the by. The guests concurred with me that the official language of London is now Polish. Is there nothing that nation can’t turn its hand to? Not only do Poles now staff every cafe and building site in the capital, they’re solving Europe’s priest shortage too. As I, by some very wicked twist of fate, plotted by my father, no doubt, ended up working for a Catholic organisation in Russia, I was constantly surrounded by Polish priests. All the females that came across them would say, “What a waste!” I would pretend I didn’t know what they were talking about. But yes, Poles and Catholicism. When I went to Bialystok from St. Petersburg to attend some conference, there were spangly new churches all over the shop. And I’m wondering whether there are any priests, or at least seminarians, in the Polish World Cup squad. I fully expect Poland to win the World Cup. And for tears of joy to be shed. And then tears of misery that they hadn’t won it earlier. Go Polska! Go Polska!


1. daggi - June 5, 2006

There seems to be a law, that whenever “Pfingsten” (is that ‘whitsun’?) and with it the “Kampf der Kulturen” occurs, it has to be very cold (for the time of year) and rain a lot. God not liking too much flesh being shown and lots of makeup, I suppose.

2. BiB - June 5, 2006

Daggi, if I could work out how to link to a comment in another post, I would guide you there and tell you that RFM has explained that Pfingsten/Pentecost – originally the Jewish festival of Shavuot, according to my dic – is 7 weeks/50 days after Passover/Easter. So I was going to say to you, “No, Whitsun is something else.” But it ain’t. Pentecost is the Christian festival held at Whitsuntide, which means White Sunday and represents when some religious folk or other dressed up in white. And now I’m all godded out.

It was indeed arctic and rainy yesterday. And the carnival was sort of cack, in a way, but actually quite enjoyable, but I think that was the Cuntry and Western and the cocktail I wolfed down. Were you there?

3. BiB - June 5, 2006

I didn’t mean to write Country Cuntry. That wasn’t a witty gag or anything. Just a very naughty typo.

4. actualfactual - June 5, 2006

I always have the problem when returning to blogging after a pause induced by general laziness is that I feel dangerously envigorated and have the need to tell people huge amounts of detail, most of it irrelevant (see recent posts) – but I do need to expunge it from my mind in some way.

5. Bowleserised - June 6, 2006

When does all this football start, anyway? I need to wake up and pay attention.

6. BiB - June 6, 2006

IAF, good for you for storing up the material, you old blog squirrel you, during the hiatuses and then producing it later. But your hiatus seems to be over now. Are you back with a vengeance? And is Deutschland’s loss England’s gain? Are you there for ever now, or is that too horrid a prospect to consider even? It’s a bad sign that even nice children routinely call one a wanker now.

B., it definitely starts some time between now and the end of July and is over by Christmas at the latest. I couldn’t be less excited, but maybe I’ll be consumed with the fever when it all actually does begin.

(My word verfication word: qtiti, which wouldn’t be a bad name for a drag queen.)

7. BiB - June 6, 2006

Pats, I’ve got a feeling Finland might never have qualified for the World Cup. Unfortunately, I don’t have a Finnish reader who could clear matters up, but I think I’m right. Still, they’re awfully good at ski-jumping, drinking, ice-hockey and singing, as we now know. If you’re thinking of brushing up on your Finnish before your jaunt to Suomi, might I give a word of two of advice? Don’t bother. Unless you’re prepared to put a good few years’ worth of effort into it, that language is an utterly unnegotiable minefield. Beautiful though. (You could of course learn the please-and-thank-you-type essentials.)

IAF, I often notice I’m what might be considered too brash with the Englanders these days, when I am a paragon of politeness and virtue by German standards. But the old Englanders aren’t very good at being disagreed with, are they? I often hear the snap of sphincter when I dare to be a contrarian back in the old country. I wouldn’t move to Holland or the North Sea, if I were you. Although the Dutch are nicely brash, if you’re missing the brashness of the Swabians. Is your sports/middle-aged-man injury gruesome enough for you to relive scene-for-scene the fate of the unfortunate gent in Breaking the Waves?

8. patroclus - June 6, 2006

My money’s on Finland to win the double.

Er, are Finland even in the World Cup?

9. actualfactual - June 6, 2006

Well, a permanent job in England or Germany would be nice, or somewhere inbetween – so Holland or a North Sea oilrig then…
Verbal abuse is continuing at a fantastic rate – of course I might just be saying and doing the wrong things – buying The Guardian, using the word “lunch”, being a tad too honest when people ask me if I’m enjoying “being home”. Bets are still open as to when I’m going to be beaten up for the first time…

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