So She Has To Retire Now, Right?

Isn’t that mandatory or something in Germany when you turn sixty-five? Well, it ought to be. Just sayin’.

Merkel

Angela Merkel is 65 today but she’s far from the oldest world leader – Shock ages revealed…

The oldest current serving world leader is Prime Minister of Malaysia Mahathir Mohamad, who is 94-years-old and assumed office in 2018.

He is followed by Queen Elizabeth II, who celebrated her 93rd birthday in April.

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German Of The Day: Erschlagen

That means to strike dead. But it can also mean to be overwhelmed by something. In this case, it will be the sheer number of Wim Wenders movies, retrospectives, documentaries, exhibitions, etc. that we will now be overwhelmed with (he’s turning 70 next week).

By the way, this place down here doesn’t exist anymore. At least not in this form.

Himmel

I’d wish him a happy birthday now but that is absolutely positively not done in Germany. Brings bad luck or something.

70 Things We Love About Wim Wenders 15. Wenders tried for a time to marry German “brood-brood” with American “just do it.” A beautiful child sprang from this union: “Paris, Texas.”

You Shining Symbol Of Socialist Superiority, You

You’re 50 years old or something. And you’re still ugly as sin.

Tower

But I love you, you big dummy.

It took four years to build the prestigious building, and the construction costs were three times higher than initially planned – a fact which only emerged after the fall of the Wall.

German Of The Day: Nervensäge

That means “nerve saw” or annoying person. And heaven knows that Claudia Roth of the German Greens has spent an entire career making a name for herself in that department.

Roth

The Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung even once referred to her as the “Mother of All Nerve Saws.” But that was then and this is now. She has clearly mellowed out now that she just turned 60 (today). Now it’s more like she just gnaws on your nerves.

Happy Birthday, Claudia!

Selbst Etiketten wie “Mutter aller Nervensägen”, wie die “FAZ” einmal schrieb, ärgern die streitbare Politikerin nicht. Im Gegenteil: Im Bundestagswahlkampf 2013 griff sie das Thema selbstironisch auf, eine Parteikampagne für mehr weibliche Mitglieder warb mit dem Spruch: “Wer nervt mehr als Claudia?”

Is This That There Nina Who Sang That 99 Red Balloons Song?

I didn’t think so.

Nina Hagen

Another real thing. I mean person. So happy 60th birthday to you, Nina.

Laut, schrill und immer ein wenig zu aufgedreht und ausgeflippt, so kennt man Nina Hagen.

PS: Did Nina Hagen need a quota?

Anti-Chancellor To Anti-Celebrate Her Anti-60th Birthday Tomorrow

And she’s been running the show here in Germany for about 40 of those sixty years too, I think. But don’t call her Anti, I mean Aunti. Her real name is Mutti.

Merkel

I’d wish you a happy birthday now, Frau Bundeskanzlerin, but Germans like you are very superstitious about doing that before the actual birthday takes place, so I won’t. But I’ll think it now anyway.

Das Talent der Angela Merkel, heraufziehende Chancen und Risiken zu erkennen und – ganz unabhängig von ihrer Überzeugung – opportun darauf zu reagieren, ist gut dokumentiert: beim nach Fukushima plötzlich betriebenen Atomausstieg, beim Ringen um Jean-Claude Juncker, als sie gleich mehrmals die Position wechselte, oder in der NSA-Affäre, in der sie zu Gunsten guter US-Beziehungen lange schwieg und auch angesichts der jüngsten Spionage-Skandale nur symbolisch handelt, um die Deutschen zu beruhigen.

Gerade die größten Erfolge der Kanzlerin bleiben bei einer derartigen Management-Methode unbesungen. Es sind jene Katastrophen, die nicht eingetreten sind, weil vorsichtiges, iteratives Agieren sie verhindert hat. Merkels größter Verdienst ist letztlich jene lang anhaltende Phase der Langeweile, an der Intellektuelle gerade wieder so lautstark leiden.