And I’m off

Cidu Bill on Jun 8th 2017


Everything’s queued up for the next couple of weeks, but I might not be able to free anybody from Moderation Hell.

Or maybe I will. Do they have Internet in Germany?

Filed in Bill Bickel, Germany, New Yorker, comics, humor | 24 responses so far

24 Responses to “And I’m off”

  1. Kedamono Jun 8th 2017 at 07:03 pm 1

    Yes they do. But you cannot use it for pleasure… :-)

  2. PeterW Jun 8th 2017 at 07:27 pm 2

    From what I’ve heard about the rest of the world, you may come back saying, “do we have internet in America?”

  3. Big Chief Jun 8th 2017 at 09:57 pm 3

    That’s how parochial I am: I finally decided it was a tossup between Berlin, Germany, or Berlin, New Hampshire. Though to my credit, I know they’re pronounced differently.

  4. MikeK Jun 8th 2017 at 10:17 pm 4

    German wifi rocked on all my trips!

  5. Kilby Jun 9th 2017 at 05:00 am 5

    I agree with MikeK @4 on German wifi (except that it’s usually called “WLAN” here). When it works, it usually works quite well. If your own hotel doesn’t offer it, try dropping by the closest Starbuck or McDonalds, or even (in some cases) the closest shopping mall.

    P.S. @ Big Chief (3) - I own a souvenier T-shirt from Berlin, Maryland, which I just happened to wear last week.

  6. Cidu Bill Jun 9th 2017 at 09:51 am 6

    Right now, I’m having trouble using it at all. In fact, the hotel’s wifi is spotty at best and after a few hours of working, Sprint’s voice, text and data are all gone.

    I know this isn’t Germany’s fault — well, probably not, anyway — but all in all technology has not been my friend here.

  7. Cidu Bill Jun 9th 2017 at 09:53 am 7

    On the up side, I got to eat a Belgian waffle in Belgium.

    It really wasn’t very good, but it was a Belgian waffle in Belgium.

  8. Olivier Jun 9th 2017 at 09:59 am 8

    They’re not for eating : they’re for spanking : :)

  9. Brian in STL Jun 9th 2017 at 06:12 pm 9

    “That’s how parochial I am: I finally decided it was a tossup between Berlin, Germany, or Berlin, New Hampshire. Though to my credit, I know they’re pronounced differently.”
    I did not know that. According the Wunnerful Web the latter is like BARlin. I’m used to other “Versailles” being different. And often other “Nevadas”.

  10. Mark in Boston Jun 9th 2017 at 09:56 pm 10

    I think even Amherst, Massachusetts and Amherst, New Hampshire are pronounced differently.

    One is “Ammerst” and the other is “Am-herst”.

    But Merrimac, Massachusetts and Merrimack, New Hampshire are pronounced the same.

  11. Cidu Bill Jun 10th 2017 at 12:37 am 11

    Yes, just another reason I never fit in at Amherst College: Even though they were technically correct, I always thought the people pronouncing the name “Ammerst” sounded like the sort of pretentious twits who ate McDonald’s french fries with a fork.

    And their pinky extended.

    Which, in fact, they did.

    “Am-herst” was a reminder to everybody that I was a NewYawker.

    That was then, of course: I’m pretty sure Amherst College is no longer Preppieville When I was there, though, my dorm had exactly the same number of princes as black students.

    (and a remarkable percentage of the college’s Jews “just happened to be” assigned to the same floor in the same dorm, which might or might not have been related, but probably was)

    I’m sorry, am I digressing? I hate when that happens.

  12. Boise Ed Jun 10th 2017 at 02:33 am 12

    Bill [7]: 20-some years ago, in Vienna, I just had to have a Sachertorte at the Hotel Sacher. It didn’t really thrill me, but there it was. In Philly, on the other hand, I had the most wonderful Philly Cheese Steak ever — from a street vendor, not any of the restaurants where I also tried it.

  13. larK Jun 10th 2017 at 12:36 pm 13

    “When I was there, though, my dorm had exactly the same number of princes as black students.”

    So that’s either zero, because it would be equally absurd (or possibly less absurd) to imagine you had a prince in your dorm room as it would be to imagine you had a person of color in <Amherst; or every black student was of course an African prince, so the number is indeterminate.

  14. Cidu Bill Jun 10th 2017 at 05:19 pm 14

    LarK, Bob was across the hall and Prince Albert of Monoco was downstairs — so I stand by my math.

  15. Cidu Bill Jun 10th 2017 at 05:33 pm 15

    Boise Ed, my wife was in Hamburg yesterday, and I hope she managed to find… well, you know.

    I should probably get a berliner before I leave here — though I mot entirely sure what it is, other than the fact the JFK thought he was one.

  16. Mark in Boston Jun 10th 2017 at 05:35 pm 16

    Boise Ed, Philly Cheese Steak was invented by a street vendor. Perhaps it doesn’t translate well to a restaurant kitchen.

  17. Kilby Jun 11th 2017 at 12:05 am 17

    @ Bill (15) - The problem with the joke about JFK being a “jelly doughnut” is that in Berlin, they aren’t called “Berliner“: the local term is “Pfannkuchen” (literally ‘pancakes’. If you want an American pancake, they are called “Eierkuchen“, literally ‘egg cakes’). There’s also an oversized glazed cookie/cake thing called “Amerikaner“. It’s probably easier just to point and say “I’ll take one of those things there.”

    The true Berlin parallel to the ‘cheese steak’ is a thing called “Currywurst“: it’s basically a hotdog smothered in curry flavored ketchup. There are all sorts of competing versions. so it’s impossible to say where to get the “best” one (the original inventor took her secret recipe to her grave a few years ago). I’ve never liked them that much, but they are popular with the natives.

    Another local specialty is the “Döner”, similar to to what is sometimes called a “Gyro” in the US: thinly sliced grilled meat and all sorts of toppings in a bread pocket. Most of the stands are Turkish, so ordering one in English might be an adventure.

  18. Hank G. Jun 11th 2017 at 12:29 am 18

    @Bill (15), @Kilby (17) - By the way the citizens of Berlin cheered JFK, they either knew what he was trying to say, or they were big fans of jelly-filled pastries.

  19. Cidu Bill Jun 11th 2017 at 12:37 am 19

    Kilby, I know, the whole “Berliner” thing is a good case of a little knowledge being a dangerous thing.

  20. Cidu Bill Jun 11th 2017 at 12:45 am 20

    Well, it probably makes sense that berliners aren’t called berliners in Berlin, just as French fries are’t called French fries in France.

    And let’s not even get started on Kentucky Fried Chicken.

  21. Cidu Bill Jun 11th 2017 at 12:48 am 21

    Hank G, the way I always imagined it, the citizens of Berlin were all Helmut Simpsons, thinking “Mmmmm… jelly donuts…”

  22. larK Jun 11th 2017 at 10:09 am 22

    So what do they call turkeys in Turkey?

  23. DemetriosX Jun 11th 2017 at 01:28 pm 23

    Saying Currywurst are from Berlin is wandering into a minefield not unlike the NYC vs. Chicago pizza argument. Hamburg also claims to the birthplace of the Currywurst and proponents of both sides can get rather vehement. But I agree with Kilby that they aren’t very good. It’s just bratwurst sliced and covered with spicy ketchup.

    It’s probably best to compare Döner to shawarma, which I understand is kind of a thing in the US. Döner is Turkish, shawarma is Lebanese, but largely the same thing.

    And I’d say that Eierkuchen are roughly the halfway point between crepes and pancakes. Pancakes have a bit more flour and usually some leavening, making them fluffier. Eierkuchen are thin enough to roll up.

  24. Meryl A Jun 13th 2017 at 02:03 am 24

    Often outside the place with wifi will work also.

    We used to stay at hotel in Lancaster, PA that had good wifi. A few years later their price had gone up and our budget had gone down, so we were staying at hotel that was suppose to have wifi… So we drove to the earlier hotel and parked in a space at the building and used their wifi.

    In August 2011 we had checked out of the campground and news of Hurricane Irene was getting worse. Husband was for not going home to NY and dealing with the storm, but Lancaster was to be hit pretty hard and one does not want to ride out a hurricane in an RV. I was for going home and I was concerned about the house and wanted to go home. We pulled over at McDonalds for him to check the weather reports - Pittsburgh was the nearest area that seemed to be avoiding the storm - and he looked for campgrounds there. Finding none, he agreed to go home.

    Even in Williamsburg we had this problem. The hotel we were in (a couple of decades ago) did not have wifi. The stores in Merchant’s Square (the modern stores area on their property) had wifi. We would go and park as closely as possible and pick up the wifi that way in our car.

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