Your Flight From 2012 Is Now Ready For Boarding

What do you mean? Berlin’s party joke phantom airport may be opening after all?

Airport

Too bad I didn’t keep our plane tickets from 2012 as souvenirs. They showed us departing from Los Angeles (LAX) and arriving at Berlin Brandenburg Airport (BER), which was just about to open. But the launch, already delayed the previous year, was again called off at the last minute. So we landed instead at the charming but small Tegel airport (TXL) that dates back to the early Cold War…

To pessimists, BER symbolizes Germany’s bad developments. Its highly publicized bureaucratic and engineering fiascoes have dented the country’s former reputation — not always entirely flattering — of being relentlessly meticulous and punctual. The subtext is that Germany, whether it’s building airports or algorithms, is increasingly leaving economic dynamism to others, especially China.

To optimists, this too is part of Germany’s long historical arc to “normality.” Germans today are more relaxed about their national identity and place in the world than they’ve ever been. That explains why they’ve also been nonchalant about BER’s travails. The truth is, many Germans have secretly been savoring the airport headlines as a font of gossip. Many an awkward dinner party has been saved by boozy debates about whether humans would set foot on Mars before disembarking at BER, or whether it would be more cost-effective to rebuild the capital near a working airport.

Germans Lousy Cooks Too

“We’ve known for years that cooking competence has drastically declined in Germany,” somebody told some news agency somewhere. “But sheesh. These losers can’t cook diddly-squat. I’ve never cooked diddly-squat myself either. But still.”

Cooks

Coronavirus pandemic reveals Germans’ poor cooking skills – Germans reliance on fast food and pre-cooked meals has left them with limited culinary skills when they need them most, a food industry group said. But Germans are flocking to supermarkets and rediscovering cookbooks.

“Now people stand in supermarkets and ask themselves, ‘OK how do I make a burger myself?'”

Corona Spares Audience Annual Lola Award Ordeal

There are rays of hope out there, if you just look.

Lola

German Film Awards to Go Ahead Without Audience Amid Coronavirus – Instead of canceling the Lolas, the German equivalent of the Oscars, the local film industry has decided to do a live broadcast of the awards on April 24 without the usual gala.

Thanks, German film gala Volk. German audiences have suffered enough.

A Communist Kangaroo?

This can only be a German production. Or a Berlin one, I should say.

Kangaroo

The Kangaroo Chronicles, a quartet of comic novels by slam poet Marc-Uwe Kling that has sold millions of copies in Germany over the last 10 years, is a classic man-meets-beast buddy story in the vein of Seth MacFarlane’s 2012 comedy Ted – only that its animal protagonist is mainly vulgar in the Marxist rather than the foul-mouthed sense…

His only liability, in terms of electoral optics, could be a fatal addiction to booze-filled pralines – and the marsupial pouch in which he keeps his copy of Mao’s red book…

The film, directed by Swiss filmmaker Dani Levy, shows the communist marsupial team up with Berlin locals against Jörg Dwigs, a Trump-style property tycoon and founder of the fictional AzD (“Alternative to democracy”) party: a classic “the people v the elite” narrative, which the German far left has found more difficult to adopt than its counterparts in Britain, America or Southern Europe.

German Of The Day: Flaschenpost

That means message in a bottle.

Flaschenpost

Message in a bottle thrown into Rhine by German family found in New Zealand – Eight years after throwing a bottle containing a message into the Rhine, a German family has been contacted by New Zealanders who say they found the message 18,000km away. But the finder didn’t give their address.

It almost sounds too, I dunno, implausible to be true.

“We are still totally surprised to have received feedback after all this time. And then of all the places, from New Zealand, our dream destination, to which we have unfortunately not yet been.”

German Of The Day: Bitch

That means bitch.

Buzz

Remember: Germany is the land of Goethe and Schiller. These two guys are Goethe und Schiller 2.0.

How many ex-boyfriends have you already had, bitch?
Look at me, bitch. Look at what a beauty I am. Ten.
Oh my God!

Honey, how many ex-boyfriends do you have, bitch?
I’m much too young. I’m not allowed to have a boyfriend.
Oh my God!
Ra-ta-ta-ta!

Bitch, how many ex-boyfriends do you have?
I don’t have an ex-boyfriend yet, bitch.
Oh my God!

Can You Tell The Difference?

Apparently in celebration of the recent trademarking of her name and the #FridaysForFuture movement, climate change activist Greta Thunberg has been turned into a wax statue in Germany.

Greta

No, not her personally. I mean she has been immortalized in sculpture at the Panoptikum wax museum in Hamburg. An interesting twist: Thunberg’s sculpture is reportedly the first in the museum that will change clothes as the seasons change. Kind of odd if you think about it, though. With the temperature rising due to climate change is this going to turn into some kind of bizarre striptease or something? And what about the issue of melting wax, huh? Has anybody given that any thought? Maybe it’s time to start a new movement to combat that. Do I have to think of everything here, people?

Greta 2

Can you tell which one up there is Greta and which one is made of wax? You don’t think both could be made of wax, do you?

Who Would Have Thought That Possible?

That the film guru in charge of the Berlin Film Festival’s propaganda efforts from 1951 until 1976 was also closely involved with the Nazis’ film propaganda efforts, I mean.

Nazi

Ex-Nazis in Germany? In the 1950s? How could that be possible?

Will the horrors never cease? First all the crappy movies. Now we find out that the whole shebang is Nazi-verseucht (infected). Let’s call the whole thing off.

The Berlin Film Festival turns 70 this year, but plans for the anniversary celebration have been overshadowed by new revelations that Alfred Bauer, Berlin’s first festival director, had deep ties to the Nazis.