Montag, 30. Juni 2008

don't think twice, its all right

the incongruous smell struck him as soon as he stepped off the train. that smell shouldn't have been there, not in that place, not then. it was the smell of coal being burned in stoves and it took his mind back to long train rides on cold winter nights, inching across the frozen ukrainian landscape. but this was germany, and it was now the middle of summer... looking across the tracks he saw the source of the smell - it was indeed a ukrainian train, the carriages were being heated up for the nocturnal journey to kyiv. the name of the city and the smell of the coal also brought back memories of the girl he had chosen to leave a year ago. he had wanted to let her go, to not waste her time, to not drag her down.

when they had parted at kyiv airport a year ago, a bob dylan song had been playing in his head. as if in a cheesy movie, a busker was now playing exactly the same song now as he stepped on to the metro, leaving the smell of the past behind him.

Freitag, 27. Juni 2008

changi airport, poolside, 2004

the gambler wiped the sweat off his brow and looked at the fake filipino passport lying on the table in front of him. idly he pondered whether or not he should use it when entering cambodia in the afternoon. in younger years, the thought of traveling with fake documents, the potential danger of it, would have made him giddy with anticipation. but now, he noted with a tired smile, even the question of whether to order a pint of tiger or heineken involved him more emotionally than the passport issue. too many years on the run already...

he took a gulp of the cold beer in front of him (he had settled for tiger) and lit up a cigarette. he thought about the girl. she had driven him to the airport and asked him to call once he got back. he wouldn't. not that there was anything wrong with the girl, at some other point in his life he might even have started some kind of serious relationship with her. but not now. he did not have the emotional energy left for a relationship. he was drained. he had nothing left to give. he exhaled the sweet smoke of the kretek, scrolled through the phone numbers in his mobile and erased her number.

a tribal gathering

they had come from across the northern european plains, some even from beyond the alps, from beyond the pyrenees, from the plains of pannonia. most wore their hair long, beards left unshaven, tattoos and piercings all around. they wore the same tribal costume - t-shirt (preferably black), combat trouser-style shorts, old trainers. they had come together to the old citadel to pay homage to their idols, buy a ticket and a few beers and to communally vent their futile frustration against The System, a system which is able to co-opt even those who oppose it most, turning their teenage rebellion into a commodity like any other to be bought, sold, marketed and consumed. "the revolution is just a t-shirt away..."

post-scriptum: sitting around on the grass before the rage against machine concert i was once again struck by the "binary" attitude of the berlin police to their job. it seems to be either "full on," for example when their cracking skulls on may 1, or they go into their "off" mode, adopting a very lackadaisical attitude to keeping up law and order. the latter was the case in the car park and lawn in front of the concert, with hundreds of people drinking and urinating in public, illegally hawking tickets and openly taking various kinds of recreational drugs. just as the young czech fans next to me had lit up their joint, two cops showed up. the czechs froze, joint in hand. the cops gave them a quick look, then looked at the car that was parked next to them, picked up their radio and called hq: "this is foot patrol 5, we checked the situation out. its ok, the car does indeed have a handicapped sign. over." and left, leaving the smoking czechs completely dumbfounded.

Donnerstag, 12. Juni 2008


as it seemed a bit out of place to return to the "normality" of blogging and my original plan of writing more fictional stories after the previous two entries, which were about as rooted in reality as it gets, i felt that some kind of bridge was necessary before moving on.

as sad and painful as dealing with the recent deaths have been, they also have shown the beauty of life, as trite as that may sound. though i will be thanking you all in person in real life as well, i'd like to collectively thank you all already here for the support i have received from you.

Dienstag, 3. Juni 2008


my last words i wrote to her were to take care. she said that she would try. twenty-four hours later she was dead. car crash. (again).

through my numbness memories come back - the sound of her bracelets jingling, her cooking, her sms'es from her night shift in some rural hospital, her striving to do good, her calling me the ice queen.

it seems somehow odd that her name and picture are still there on my skype-console. offline. forever. my last words to her were not delivered. and never will be.