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Tycho / on Mon, Jun 16 2003 at 3:01 am

Munich, Germany

I just finished a beer that was so large that I had to lift it with both
hands.  Really, the

only reason I ordered it was to wash down a pretzel that was itself
so large that it

could have eaten me under the right circumstances.  I have a very
high opinion of

Munich, but it may have been artificially produced.

We got here on Monday, and we didn’t know it, but it was some kind of holiday.  We just started walking through a park, and we came upon a few hundred people drinking a lot.  A bunch of old guys wearing lederhosen were playing brass instruments in the second floor of some rickety structure.  I saw no way to access that level, so it’s possible they got up there as young men and were never able to escape.

I started to cry as I sat down with a gigantic piece of meat, a schnitzel, which is like a fried continent.  I mean it, I pulled my hat off my head and covered my face with it and started to cry in the middle of five hundred people.  This was the thought that crept across my mind, like skywriting.  This is what it is all about.  If getting drunk at eleven in the fucking afternoon and eating a huge piece of meat is wrong, than I don’t want to be right.

Okay, so that was a holiday and people were celebrating.  It’s not like that all the time. I could live here for the rest of my life though, if I needed to.  We ride rented bikes we have named Bavaratti and Black Power, we ride them through parks as big as my whole district back home, we ride them through wildflowers which are tiny but distinct, like pixels.

In Italy, meals come in discrete phases, like space rockets.  In Germany, the best way I can think of to describe the food is “pragmatic.”  It is there to get the job done, and make sure that the beer has something to keep it company.  We have no idea what we’re ordering, ever.  Brenna did the “Learn Italian” CD-ROM, and I was supposed to do the German one, but once I learned the word for Airplane I lost interest and got heavily into online Raven Shield.  Airplanes are rarely on the menu, so I’ve sorta let down the team here.  We point at menus to get our food, at random items whose origins are mysterious to us.  Every time, I seem to get sausages and sauerkraut.  I’m fine with this, I think that pickling things is very prudent and I support the procedure wholeheartedly.  But Brenna gets something like a bowl of Turkey Jell-O with a carrot in it or some shit.  That’s not a joke.  Neither was the Venice thing, actually.  I will think of Venice every time a red sore leaks white pus.

The best thing about being over here, aside from the bidets I mean, is listening to all these languages.  Someone needs to speak English for about thirty seconds before I even recognize it.  I took a lot of French in High School, which is the same as taking no French ever - I used to be able to talk about Hair and Cheese or whatever, but the extent of my French ability these days is to declare that I am a frozen chicken.  Before I came here, I think that I believed Italian and German and French were just other ways to speak English - like a dialect that they persisted in using because they were stubborn or proud.  When you hear a person in Italy or whatever talking in some weird way, they aren’t tring to be funny - it’s a whole language.  They talk like that all the time.  They even think like that, if you can imagine it.

Italian is cool because it can warp space-time.

Let’s say that someone is just saying “hi” to you.  The Buon comes out okay, we’re good so far.  Even the G is good.  But when we get to the iornooooooo, minutes can turn into hours.  I was talking to a guy at this place and he was like “Buon” and I was like, “Yeah, great.  Look, I need to be somewhere this week.”   German, it’s basically like English.  English, you know, spoken by a monster, underwater, into a walkie-talkie.

I’ll be turning the e-mail back on come Wednesday’s post.  Europe is great and everything, but I miss my fucking cat and I don’t want to be here anymore.


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