Tag Archives: German

German driving tips … you can do it naked, while merging and while peeing. Just don’t pass on the right.


It occurred to me today, while driving of course, that I’ve done a disservice to fellow blogger, nay friend, Oh God My Wife Is German*.   You see he just moved to Germany, from Seattle I think, to join his wife.   If not Seattle then from the U.S. anyway and I, having lived here for the past five years should have offered him some driving advice.

I’m sorry OGMWIG, truly sorry.  I hope this makes up for it.

So as a public service announcement to anyone reading this that might find themselves driving someday in Germany and to OGMWIG I offer the following tips for driving in Germany.

Tip one:

Always, always collect photos of funny words on license plates.  In the European Union, well in the German part of the EU at least, license plates always consist of three or four letters followed by three or four numbers.   The numbers are rarely funny.

But the letters, they occasionally lead to hilarity.

You’ll find a good number of ‘ass’ ones and the occasional ‘fuk’ or ‘fuc’ and I always laugh at the ones that say ‘shit’ because really how funny is that?

But the winner goes to a good friend and co-worker.

He found the “klit” and to steal his own joke.

Trust me, though fuzzy, it says Klit. I’m just shocked it was found.

“I found it .. I found the Klit!”

Tip two:

Never pass on the right.

Seriously, the Germans while otherwise an understanding and caring society lose their shit over this.     I used to do it, no more.  Really if it means I need to go 5 KPH in the right lane so that I don’t pass the retard doing 6 KPM to my left, I’m a driving 5 KPH.

I could tell my German neighbors that I am only sexually aroused by male puppies that have been ritually shaved by midgets that are then lit on fire… they would respond with kindness, understanding and tolerance (seems something bad happened here back in the 30s and 40s, I don’t know) but should I confess to a right-lane pass of a vehicle, BAMO – I’d be beaten with sticks in the road and kicked.

So don’t pass on the right.

Tip three:

If there is room enough, literally room enough, for your car to merge in front of another then merge away.

You’re going to have to develop some seriously attuned spatial-reasoning skills because Germans can park, merge or otherwise cram their cars into spaces the size of shoeboxes.    Which fits the National stereotype nicely I think but still baffles the American psyche sometimes.

We’re Americans after all.  We’re used eight ‘god blessed and usually backed up’ lanes of super highway outside of Los Angles for the love of god.   Our parking spaces would be cattle grazing fields here.  In American when I merged I demanded, DEMANED WITH CAPITAL LETTERS, two football (American football at that) fields in front of me and one behind me.  Further I expected the national anthem to play when I put on my turn signal on four miles back and usually anticipated that angels would sing too me as I slowly, ever so slowly, drifted into the other lane.

Not here.

Here it’s all

“Can I make it?”

“Go!”

Countless times on the Autobahn I’ve been driving a safe and sane 250 KPH approaching a semi on the right lane with a four-cylinder plastic car behind it.

Now that driver has to calculate, as I head toward him at speeds far exceeding my IQ, how long I will have to stop, can he jump into the left lane fast enough to give me enough warning and am I currently writing this blog on my phone while driving?

The fuckers always always do it.   One minute you’re rocking out to Lionel Richie’s ‘All night long’ and the next minute everything from the backseat is hitting you in the back of the head, the breaks are on fire and you’ve, again, pooped yourself.

Tip four:

The Germans are better drivers than Americans are.

By and large they are.  Get over it.  It takes like 20 years and costs the national debt of Greece to get a license here.   Also if you really want to have fun over beers some night ask an older German how Greece is doing.

Never mind, don’t do that.

Point is that, by and large, they are better drivers than we are because we learned from our dads and they learned from someone with a PHD in driving.

My dad:  “Son when someone’s riding your ass your best bet is to slam on your brakes and teach them people a lesson!”**

German PHD driving instructor: “Ven das car behind you ist too close you must maintain ze current speed und no vary your velocity!”

There are tons, tons and tons of antidotal stories I’ve heard about Germans being fucked-up drivers, most of them I can fully believe.   Can I believe a friend saw a German dusting the dashboard of his new car with an unused paint brush at 120 KPH?

You bet I can.

I think I can prove they’re better drivers, apart from the no-speed limit autobahn thing.

Let’s play ‘let’s pretend’ for a moment.   Let’s pretend the governors of California, Oregon and Washington State decided collectively that not only was a speed limit unnecessary on parts of I95 but that it should be declared an honest to shit race track.

What would be the result?

If your answer to that hypothetical was, ‘the 82nd Airborne division’ and ‘a state of national emergency,’ you and I agree.

But the Germans, those whacky Germans, they gave us nurburgring and the less famous hockenheimring, stretches of actual road that I’m led to believe are used by normal 9 to 5 commuters and people that want to drive their cars to level 11.

Grandma taking the grandkids to a kid movie and a new Porsche owner really working the gears, on the same road … the mind melts.

Tip Five:

You can pee anywhere you like.    Well almost anywhere.

All those little parking areas along the autobahn, you know the ones.  The ones with the picnic tables no one seems to use that are always populated by trucks with truckers sleeping in them.

They’re basically open air urinals.

Weird I know.

You never see whole families at these places, using the bathroom or even using the picnic tables (because they smell like pee).  You just see truckers sleeping and men in suits peeing …

Tip six:

And I saved the best for last man.

You can drive naked.    You and the wife can tool around the German countryside naked as they day you were both born.   I look forward to the stories.

Seriously I heard it from a German friend so it must be true.   Seems a German man during the one hot day a year in Germany decided that air conditioning was for suckers and that he’d be cooler (metaphorically and physically maybe) driving naked.   It was a great plan until the popo pulled him over and gave him a ticket for, wait for it, driving naked.

Later though, to the judge, he argued that he had every right to be naked inside of his own property (like his house) and that his car was in fact his own property so what was the problem?

The judge let him off.   So go ahead and drive around naked, I’m 100 …. Well … 90 … well 60 percent … okay check with an attorney first on that one.

* Read this blog.  It’s about an American that married a German and moved here, HILARITY.  Oh God My Wife I German is too funny, if you don’t read it I hate you, a lot with like extra hate.

** My dad was actually a driving teacher so that never happened.  His actual advice at the time would have been more akin to “Son we aren’t getting home until you get this car going off this hill in first gear.”  It took three weeks.

Ah Sunday, relaxing Sund … A lesson in reading your spouses insane side.


Are you the early riser in your house?  If so you and I have something in common.

Go us!

You and I look forward to the few peaceful moments that come with getting out of bed early and enjoy the  precious few quiet moments we have in alone in the house.   If you watch TV in the morning you’re careful to monitor the volume.  You might even be selective about which lights you turn on in order to not disturb the other sleeping people in the house.

You’re, like I, am trying to milk every precious second out of the serene, tranquil morning that you can.*

I like to turn the coffee pot on, tip-toe into the living room and, because I live in Europe and get the American Forces Network on my TV, watch yesterday’s evening news – this morning, while surfing on the iPad.

Weekdays I get a half an hour tops.

But on weekends I typically get a lot more.   So much so that I might even, don’t tell the wife, take a quick 15 to 30 minute nap.   Because life in the 40’s is just that fucking exciting!  Don’t tell the kids …

Then two hours later she wakes up and berates me, while wiping the sleep from her eyes, for not having done ‘anything’ for the past few hours.

Read that last bit again, I’ll wait.

I, fool that I am, thought this Sunday would be like all the others.   True my suspicions should have been ‘hyper-level 10 million level’ when she not only woke up at the same time I did but literally ‘feet hit the floor’ before mine.

Still though no cause to worry, right?

I drifted down stairs to find her brewing tea and the coffee pot already on.

Full-disclosure, though I am awake earlier it does not mean I am in any way capable of making a decision more important than, “should I scratch my crotch or not” for at least 4 cups of coffee and/or 30 minutes.

But not Dagmar, oh no, not her.

She can go from dead asleep to let’s go run a marathon.  Literally, let’s go run, put your stuff on, screw it lets just run in our pajamas, come on let’s go, let’s go!

Her, and you people that are like her, scare me deep, deep inside.   I cannot understand you and I’d be sympathetic if I wasn’t so full of rage toward you.    Slow the fuck down Sparky, we got the whole day ahead of us.

Normally after this many years my morning ritual, when she sees it, is

Well who needs coffee now?

My mornings are … wait huh. Okay I had a point when I start … boobies. Photo shamelessly ripped from Newscorpse.com

respected.   I’m afforded an opportunity to drink coffee, blow my nose, scratch my crotch and make sneering gestures at Fox news anchor Sheppard Smith (an unfortunate consequence of AFN is that during the 6 to 7 a.m. time period it’s him or Piers Morgan – even in my foggy state I pick Sheppard over Piers because Piers just sucks. Plus side note, I predict it’s only a matter of time before Sheppard is caught having dude-on-dude sex somewhere embarrassing, like Florida.  Side note to the side note if you Google “fox news anchor” and select images (if you’re a guy) you’ll thank me … hello ladies!).

And that’s how I overcame my addiction to methamphetamines using nothing but a case of motor oil and a stick of butter.

See what I did there?  I used a joke about getting off track to refer back to the getting off track so we could get back on track.   I’m a geniou … maybe I should just get back on track?

So there I am on the couch yesterday morning, hot and first cup of coffee in hand and there Dagmar is with her cup of tea (when did you become British for the love of God?).  Typical morning really only she’s up of her own volition and the sun isn’t – which tells me something is afoot.

Then it happens, then the statement is made and it is matched by action.   Slamming the footrest back into the sofa without regard to ‘quiet time’ rules at all she jumped to her feet.  Her eyes were wild and her muscles seemed, at least would have seemed, were I awake, to swell.

She became Hulk-Dagmar and there would be action this Sunday morning, quiet time and coffee be damned!

It got much worse as the day went on but I couldn’t take any photos because I was holding televisions up, or something

There. Would.  Be. Action.

I think she was also wearing a green t-shirt which likely led to the hulk analogy, also I was almost asleep.

There are certain ‘thoughts’ expressed in this house that are vocalized but never really acted upon.   For instance in all our years of marriage we have never ate ‘rice and beans’ the entire month even though I’ve been told she’ll do it, she totally can do it, and if I don’t watch out, we will do it.

Hint:  She won’t but it’s fun to hear.

That’s an example of a threat that, made during a ‘discussion about money’, will never happen.  I think it’s called a Paper-Dagmar Argument or something.   I should have paid a lot more attention in class.

Then there are the others.  They’re not threats, they’re warnings.   Things we’re going to do this weekend.  “We’re going to go hike up to the castle”, “we’re going to go to Ikea”, “we’re going to clean the house to within an inch of its life” and “we’re going to go to the blah, blah, blah.”

Any husband reading this understands that probability factors in to each of these ‘statements.’   Yeah maybe we’re going to the event this weekend but you dear wife might, you might blank-percent might, change your mind.   Most of us agree (at the time) that the plan is a good one and start influencing however we can the odds back into our favor.

Our ‘favor’ is code for those of you that are interested for, ‘staying at home, drinking beer and maybe having a fire.’

It’s in the married guy’s bible, chapter II paragraph 4.5.  Look it up.

The one that scares the shit out of me though is the cleaning one.  I can’t predict it, I’m helpless when the cleaning beast rips out of her chest ala Aliens and I know it’s going to hurt me.    The cleaning one is brought up a lot but it’s usually just a light, once over the house, nothing heavy.  But once in a while I find myself moving furniture out of a room and fear for the cat’s life.

So yeah it was the cleaning one.

This is the woman that makes me lift the TV up so she can dust UNDER it.  This request is made and granted during ‘normal weekend’ cleaning.

Can you guess what deep-cleaning consists of?

She once vacuumed a large area rug then turned it upside down and vacuumed the bottom of the rug because German-Puerto Rican people are inside.

This woman once cleaned out and reorganized my toolbox because she wanted me to start a blog or because she’s just that nuts.  You pick.

Truth be known, between moving furniture and polishing the undersides of things I was allowed to listen to podcasts and at about 1 p.m. or so was authorized beer.  The warden has a heart.

To anyone, and yeah I’m looking at you, that says, “You’re the man of the house you do what you want” well I guess your situation is different than mine.   Maybe your dynamic isn’t the same as mine.   To me when she really, really fuck really, wants to do it I’m not going to stop her and I’m going to be a dick if I don’t participate.

Besides I’m too busy holding up the TV so it can be dusted under to really argue and have you MET Dagmar?

*  I have no idea how this works with kids.  I just assume they wake up, poop on themselves, set the pets on fire, eat sugar and yell.    I’m not far off am I?  I forgot only barfing right?  Oh and the cartoons.  Never forget the cartoons.

German flowers, atheists and the bathroom … an update about nothing


I just tried to revive something that was dead, well mostly dead.  It has a pulse but its faint and thread bare and any other medical-sounding terms I might have heard somewhere.

It was something I wrote a while back and didn’t upload to here cause well, it sucked.   It was written drunk, edited while sober and pronounced dead about a minute ago.

So basically this is another update where I say I got nothing.   The last time this happened I told you Condoleezza Rice was hot, and she is.

So how about a few random bits of stupid observations about stuff.

Germans, the god-damn Germans

Maybe they will pay, maybe they wont. Okay it’s Germany they will.

German’s, at least here where I live, honestly plant fields of flowers and then put a barrel (think of it as a piggy bank) on the edge of the field, with a price for each type of flower and trust the shit out of everyone.   Funny point is it works.  Germans, My non German-ass included, dutifully pay that money, even when no one is looking.   I have full faith that in America someone would drive a 4×4 into the field, and then do donuts, at night just to be a dick.  No one would pay the price and the little knives that hang on the bottom of the pricelist that are used to cut the flowers would all be stolen on day, nay, hour one.

Seriously, some farmer plants a ton of different flowers.  Puts a barrel in the field with some dull knives and gives the customer the price of each flower.   Customers here cut the flower (with or without the dull provided knife) and deposit the knife in its place and then put money in the barrel.

Someone in America given the same situation, and you know it’s true, would totally poop in the barrel after destroying the flowers, stealing all the dull knives all the while facebooking about it.

Germans are so fucking trusting you but buy into the system, fuck it 14 sunflowers cost 10 Euros and I’m the dick if I don’t pay it when no one’s looking.

Dagmar looks over 90% of these updates.

Dagmar is SO goddamn sick of my sense of humor and after this many years who can blame her?  When she reads these updates, and occasionally laughs out loud, I yell out, “what, what part was funny?”

Really I do.

Look I was an enlisted public affairs dork for the U.S. Army for 20 years.   Years ago that mean you, ‘were the editor of the base/fort/caserne/camp’s newspaper.”   So if you spelled Caseme Ederle that way (and I did) in the headline you got a lot of shit when the paper hit the street in the morning.   Dagmar understood and lay in bed with me at night copy editing, so fuck I trust her edits here.   She doesn’t make many edits here, which scares the shit out of me.

I do go back in and change shit here when I see an obvious mistake but they are mostly on 20% of the updates mainly, the ones she hasn’t seen.

Mostly.   Read that last word in voice of the little girl in the movie Alien’s II.  “They mostly edit at night, mostly.”

I’m an atheist.

I had this big-ass idea in my head about how I would ‘come out’ about my atheism and then beer happened.   There’s a lot of news right now, a lot of books, a lot of talk about atheism but really, who cares?  If you believe in a higher power, good for you!  I think you’re wrong but why should I type a lot of words, put a lot of thought and effort into … into what?  Converting you?   You’re not going to be converted and I’m not going to become a believer in a higher power.    I’m kind of pissed off at atheists that are yelling in the media right now.  We’re a barely oppressed minority, chill.  Facts will eventually beat out believe, every time.   Really guys, chill.  We’re getting there.  Yelling, screaming, hell proselytizing, only adds noise.

Fact will beat out fantasy, every time.  Wait.

Okay maybe that does deserve its own update later.

I don’t understand the bathroom, specifically the shower …

This is likely more to any guys reading this, ever read the shit on the bottles your lady has in the shower?

Really, I mean really read it?

WTF, let’s spell it out cause using the capital letters doesn’t do George Carlin justice, What the fuck are you ladies doing in the shower?  Really what’s a sleep mask?  It’s in a bottle with a squeeze top.

(Dagmar breaking in:  Really that’s funny? I bought that crap six years ago, in Afghanistan, and it’s finally used up.   It’s a wonder my hair hasn’t fallen out.  Really Todd?)

Okay I actually just went up into the shower and looked.  It’s not a face mask, its better it’s restorative hair mask and something that is titled “sleep”.

Just a bottle called fucking, “sleep.”

The actual text

It also says and I directly quote:

RELAX BEFORE SLEEP.

 Lavender Essential Oils and Vanilla

Absolute help calm feelings of

stress so you can sleep better.

Seriously there are typos here that would make Hunter S. Thompson cry but, what the fuck is that, really what is it?  Absolute help calm feelings I want to punch you right now.

A Good Samaritan makes me cry, reduces professional to violence


Hey Good Samaritan, how are you doing?   Take a seat.  Are you comfortable?  Good.  Do your people drink?  Do you want a beer, no, just a diet Coke then.  Well color me not surprised.

Anyway look I know you’ve likely been busy what with rescuing kittens, walking little-old ladies across streets and, say were you a boy scout?   Eagle Scout?  Impressive.    No shocks there really.  Yeah, yeah, it’s awesome.

Listen I know you’re busy, you want to get back out there reading to deaf people or whatever but do you remember closing a really heavy door this weekend*?   Then when it was closed, just to make absolutely sure you closed it you spun the digital lock attached to it because engaging the simple key lock isn’t good enough for person of your ‘anal retentive nature’?   And to be honest that spinning was the awesome part of what you did, just closing the door was one thing, spinning the lock, engaging the second deadbolt was the kicker.  You’re a do-gooder that goes the extra mile, and I like that.

Because yeah, in the six years my fellow coworker saw that door (get this) it has never been locked.

Not once, it was always open.

It has a combination I’m sure but that knowledge has been lost to time.  It’s a fucking mystery and I couldn’t find Scooby Doo to solve it.  The mystery van was nowhere to be seen and old man Wither’s has been dead for the better part of half a decade.

What was behind the door you ask?  Behind that door are secrets, bad-ass secrets that I can’t discuss here for national security reasons.   Okay, Okay because I know no one from work reads this (giggle) I’ll give you one.

Iran and Israel don’t always get along.

I’ve said too much.

Anyway, I needed that door to remain open, I almost feel like Pvt. 1st Class Bradley Manning here, It should be OPEN.  Help me Julian Assange, as soon as you’re out of that apartment in London I mean.

I needed it open but no, you closed it.   Closing it not being enough, because you’re a special kind of Good Samaritan, you spun the dial engaging the second lock not even Indiana Jones could outwit.

Don’t believe me, Indy could get through it damn you, you say.   Read on.

Did I mention that this door was the new door to my (and my coworkers) new office space?  No?   Did I mention that the movers were busily packing up my old office and would be arriving at the new office at 15 till two seconds from now?

Yeah it was the kind of morning where you find yourself wondering how much the guy that cuts the grass makes.   Really, the wife and I have too much shit as it is.   Probably a lot of time to think on those riding lawn mowers,  pop in some headphones, select playlist called “who cares” and dream big dreams as you take your John Deere Z665 model mower out into lawn oblivion.  Did you know the John Deere Z665 has a turning radius of who the fuck cares?  Me either.

So this door, this VAULT door, yeah it’s no joke.  It’s meant to prevent anyone from ever, without the code, which I don’t have, from ever, ever entering.   Had Edgar Allen Poe known of such technology he’d have saved himself a lot of time.  Don’t bother walling the victims in, just slap this sucker shut and eating the combination would have achieved the same effect.

Okay you’re thinking how bad can this be?  You call in a locksmith, magic

sparks, what can go wrong?

This was an early, pre-hit it with a hammer attempt. Of course the fire department was involved moments later.

happens, and the door’s open.  You’re underestimating my door, never underestimate my door.    The locksmith, after setting off the building’s fire alarm was reduced to hitting it with a hammer.

The locksmith called more seasoned co-workers, his boss, the old retired guy that ‘knew all the tricks.” Nothing worked, I think I saw a tear in his eye at one point.

It’s still not open, after reducing a professional locksmith to brute force, it remains closed.    Extra special note to the American tax payer, you buy super-awesome vault doors.

I did learn a few things, a few new German swear words among them.    I also learned that to the Germans (this is from the bored movers waiting by a loaded truck while locksmith boy hit the lock with a hammer) 30 minutes in American time is like 2 hours and 30 minutes.  Thirty minutes in German time is like 20 minutes.  This came up when the locksmith went to notify the fire department he’d need a ‘cutting permit’ (as best I understood it).  Which was awesome cause when the fire alarm went off, well we had a permit damn it … and I’ll never really understand this country … ever.

So thank you Good Samaritan, best laid plans and all.   That was super awesome on a level you’ll never understand.  I’m drinking a well earned beer in your honor Sir or Ma’am, you’re awesome on a level you’ll never know.

*   An alternate theory, proposed by a co-worker, is that the door was closed and the dial spun by someone intentionally.    I’d go with it except it’s so evil words haven’t been invented yet that can describe it.   I’ve have been stuck typing things like evil faster than light or hates puppies level infinity poops on kittens and who the hell types that kind of stuff?

Five reasons why living in Germany is just f’ing weird …


While making fun of America is fun (and generates hate mail, added bonus) I don’t want anyone to have the impression Europe, specifically Germany, is without its quirks.

So let’s jump right in shall we …

The music is bizarre.

Just your typical German pub

Just your typical German pub

Its 5:30 p.m. on a Friday and you and your co-workers are meeting for a ‘let loose some steam’ beer at your favorite German pub.  One minute, while waiting on your friends to show up, you’re grooving on some cool, never before heard pop song on the radio desperately hoping your soundhound application will let you know who the artist is and the next goddamn minute it’s fucking 1975 and Paul Anka is ‘having my baby’ and I’m having a shit fit because why the hell would those two songs ever be played back to back?

Welcome to European radio.

German radio seems, to my American ears at least, to make no damned sense at all.  One minute you’re listening to newest, coolest song ever and the next minute you’re in the middle of a Twisted Sister revival.   

Pick one goddamn type of music German radio station and STICK to it!

The toilets are well …

Before I wrote this part about German toilets, while planning the next few paragraphs in my head, a little voice said, “are you SURE that’s the reason they are designed that way?   Yeah we’ve always been told that’s the reason but do we KNOW that’s the reason?”

Let me explain.

Poop talk follows and I’m sorry.

German toilets are designed with a small shelf that literally catches your poop for, and I’m not kidding, health reasons.

Okay I understand that’s a wiki stub and I understand what the note “citation needed” means but if anyone has a different explanation I’m all ears. Maybe those shelves are for books, papers, printed out blog posts from this site so that critics can say, “I literally shit on what you just wrote!”   Maybe it’s so when … look it’s called a poop shelf for a reason.

And at a certain level it’s another example of those damned clever and practical Germans.  That’s really kind of brilliant.  

A good friend of mine, an American that utilizes German health care system, said he loves his relationship with

well you wouldn't want to put your car keys on this kind of shelf

Well you wouldn't want to put your car keys on this kind of shelf ... photo swiped from this very cool blog The Gringa Trail is pretty funny

his doctor.   It’s very personal, he explained.   The doctor knows him so well he’s even, according to my friend, able to tell when he’s stressed out or just isn’t feeling that well. 

My doctor, who I also like, starts a stop watch I think when I arrive. 

Doctor: What’s the problem?  (clicks stop watch)

 Me: My toe hurts 

Doctor: Broken toe

(Tape, tape, tape)

Doctor:  NEXT!   New clinic record bitches, less than 45 seconds!

Point is German health care may indeed allow for conversations about poop formation, color and for all I know location on the shelf.

German Patient:  I’m not pooping center poop shelf anymore.

German Doctor: What, this is terrible!

German Patient: I know!

German Doctor: Poop misalignment is a leading cause of … okay who are we kidding, you want a few days off right.

German Patient: shit you’re right

German Doctor: Fine but let’s leave the profanity out of it.

As clever and practical as that may be sometimes my American brain takes over I want to poop into a 50 gallon drum where I will never me confronted face to face with what was, three hours ago, a great bratwurst and 3 beers.

Do I need to tell anyone here what having poop underwater vice exposed to the air does for the, shall we say bouquet? 

If there are no closets, what the hell do gay Europeans come out of at the age of 23?

I live in a four bedroom, hell if you want to get a bit creative five or six bedroom house.  That’s right America, while sucking off of your hard-earned tax dollars (take that Kat … scroll down to the comments) I’m over here living in a fucking mansion with servants, a Mitt Romney inspired car elevator and

… okay no I don’t

While I’ve heard that the reason European houses don’t, as a rule, have closets is that the ‘closet is considered a room for tax purposes.   I doubt that’s true but the point is their houses generally don’t have closets, not the way we think of them at least.

So how many bedrooms do I have?  Two.  I’ve lived in 3 houses in Germany and one Italy, total “no shit that is a closet and not a room closets” in those houses?   None.

actually it looks pretty cool ...

Actually it looks pretty cool ...

So what happens?  What do you do?  Those extra rooms, they become the closets.   One, likely two rooms become places where all your clothes go.    That and you buy the European version of a closet, a shrunk, a chest or just a giant against the wall thing.  Which again on some level makes sense, you go to a store and you buy an item that goes up against the wall of your house and you pick one that makes sense to you.   But I gotta say the American system just makes SHIT easier.   

Kitchens and light fixtures

We American military and government civilians living in Europe lead sheltered lives here*.  We do.   People can and do, sadly, spend entire tours here venturing no further into German culture than their drive to work.    Like any part of the world, except that one place (you know the one), Europe is steeped in culture and filled with mystery and awe behind every twist and turn of the road.

Mysteries like why the fuck Europeans insist on raping the kitchen and every light fixture in the house when they move. 

European kitchens are modular kinds of things, unlike our ‘fuck you I’ll get moved with you remodel or burn me down for the insurance money’ American kitchens.   If you rent, or buy , a German house you start with a blank room.  Hot and cold water hook ups coming in and a drain hole in the wall for water going out, electrical outlets and that’s it.  No countertops, hell nothing even to hold up a counter top.    I mean I get taking your fridge, your dishwasher and if you’re really pleased with it your stove but literally EVERYTHING? 

So if you’re putting in a modular kitchen, think this through, it’s likely purchased from Ikea and where do you think on the durability lies on a scale of one to 10?  If you guess somewhere around a knob falls off if harsh language is used around it — have a beer, you’re right.

Yes, yes there are gourmet European kitchens and people that have KICK ASS kitchens but the crap we end up renting usually has no drawer that ever closes quite right and the counter height was designed for use by midget dwarfs.

Don’t get me started on light fixtures.   Europeans when moving take them when they move.   I have negotiated with at least two previous tenants about purchasing their light fixtures and discovered that men left to buying light fixtures don’t really give a shit.   The conversation goes this way, “and I paid 5 euro for that light, and 6 for that one and oh boy we got crazy in this room, that fixture is 10 euro.”   It ended with me handing over 50 euro because I really don’t want to spend a day buying and hanging up new light fixtures either.

*We’re sheltered here because we generally have access through our base housing office to landlords that understand we’re retarded/lazy Americans and want our kitchens to have counters and our rooms to have light.     

Everything is FUCKING expensive

The average cost of a pint of beer in the United States $1.83, the average cost of in Germany $3.37* and HOLY SHIT THAT’S A LOT OF MONEY! 

Putting aside the discussion of which currency is stronger than the other and ignoring the general idiocy of people like this model, one euro is at the moment of this writing is worth about $1.32.     Meaning something that costs €100 ends up costing $132.00 is good hard American cash.

Then there is VAT.  The Value added tax in Germany is 19% which goes toward such programs as …

(left for three hours to play Skyrim)

Join my guild

Join my guild!

Stupid Grey Beards, those guys suck.

Value added taxes are used to subsidize poop shelves and doctor patient discussions of poop for all I know.   Point is crap here is expensive. 

Yes, I know, I know you can and should use a simple and easy to use VAT form to avoid the tax**.    But for a purchase under like $100 it’s not worth it.   I tried it at my favorite bar.  The tab was 46 (or $60 with VAT no tax saves me an amazing $11 dollars). 

Me: Can I use a vat form?

Hans: Fuck you Todd, €60

Me: That’s like 11 dollars!

Hans:  Do we have to do this every time dude?  Just pay the tab.

Me: Well then FUCK your tip

Hans: Dude stop tipping in Europe, you look like a douche every time you do it.

Me: I hate you.

Hans: See you tomorrow?

Me: Of course.

 

* The German beer verses U.S. beer price, while fun, was gathered through a ‘shit ton’ of retarded Google searches … your own price may very

** VAT avoidance IS easy in Germany.  In Italy you have to leave your first born child at the store, drive to Rome (which is a bitch from Sicily) sacrifice a goat and then two-years later your purchase arrives at your door, after you’ve moved.   They also keep your kid.

Part 3: Naked in mixed company German sauna reborn … erections and gayness


I had hoped this was going to be the third and final German sauna story but I think there’s going to be a fourth. 

Yeah, there’s going to be a fourth.  Besides being (99% of the time) a great relaxing day they can be (1% of the time) hysterical … to me, and hopefully to you.

While I’ve had some rocking days here at Hadafewbeers.com (thanks for all the Facebook shares by the way) where there were TONS of daily hits … the series about being naked in a German sauna still gets a lot of hits every damn day.   While ‘Merica, F’yah generated a lot of hits the sauna stories continually get hits albeit in smaller numbers .   On days, hell weeks, I don’t post … in the search terms that word press provides on the stats page, German sauna is still the strongest, all around, hit generator. 

Which leads me to believe there’s a lot of perverts reading this, awesome.

The other two sauna stories for those that missed them are located here (part one) and here (part two).

Last time I posted on the topic I promised the following in this update.

Gay man hits on me in the sauna and the same gay man hits on me later story follow up.

What happens exactly when the whole place goes nude.

Three erections

Yes, Dagmar, okay I was looking at those girls cause they were hot

The Pee-Pee Patrol

Exhibitionist girl

Sailor man’s penis

We’ll get to the first three this time and the last four next time … I’ll even add in a bonus, what happens when you meet a fellow American at the sauna.

Finally Dagmar and I have gone to the sauna I’m betting a few hundred times and these are the exception not the rule to the place.    If you’re ever in Europe and thinking of hitting a traditional European sauna nothing like this will happen to you, but if it does tell me all about it.

So here we go.

Gay man hits on me in the sauna and the same gay man hits on me later story follow-up.

This is the funniest trip to the sauna and also it’s the one that makes Dagmar cry with laughter whenever it comes up in conversation.  Gay men have from time to time, since I was like 13 or some shit, hit on me.   Dagmar finds every single instance extremely funny and I hate her for it.

Fuck you Dagmar it’s NOT funny!  

Okay it’s pretty funny.

Did I mentioned crowded, the sauna's are crowded.

As I think I explained in a previous post at most big sauna’s there are sauna meisters and they, every hour or at the really big ones every half hour, run a special sauna where you rub honey on your naked flesh, rub salt on your naked flesh or for all I know somewhere in northern Germany there is a ‘smack yourself in the face with a dead fish’ sauna.  Point is there are special saunas, you have to get there early because they get VERY, in a way that capital letters cannot convey, crowded. 

By the time the sauna doors are closed you are packed in like sardines, naked sardines and I don’t know of any other kind.   Literally you are squeezed into your space on the sauna bleachers desperately trying not to make skin to skin contact with anyone you aren’t married to.

So this particular sauna was a salt sauna, where you sweat your balls off and then rub salt all over your skin because according to Germany evolution didn’t allow us to shed dead skin cells effectively enough and we need the help of salt.  Alternatively my skin feels really smooth and soft after this particular sauna which is why dudes think I’m gay a lot.   It’s a lose, lose situation … point is I like the salt sauna.

‘Get to the fucking point’ I can hear you all saying and ‘FUCK you’ is my reply.  You get hit on by a gay man while you’re nude with your WIFE LITERALLY glued to your side and then YOU talk about it in a humorous manner.

Okay so during the salt sauna, when you’re rigorously rubbing rock salt all over your body you, and I’m sure you figured it out, can’t do your back.  That’s okay though I have Dagmar to do mine and I do hers. 

Then it happened. 

I speak enough German to order a beer and to prove I don’t speak German.  What I mean is, I don’t speak German.    

The man next to me wanted me to rub the rock salt on his back.   I was naïve enough to, at the time, rationalize this in my

See the guy in the center, the one with the clothes, yeah that the's sauna meister.

head.   There are, I assume, plenty of gay saunas in Germany … anyone that was looking for gay sex would never come to these huge, mixed gender saunas looking for gay sex.  To this point in my, I guess then 3 years in Germany, I knew the Germans to be fanatical rule followers and I honestly assumed this was another German dedicated to the health benefits of the sauna.  

Still though there was the twinkle in his eye.  Never ignore a fucking twinkle folks, never.

I rubbed that salt into his back with the vigor of a German.  “Do a good job,” I told myself.  Work that upper back, scrub the middle back and damn it son don’t skimp on the salt, use some of yours if you have too. 

I introduce him to Dagmar shortly thereafter because even I, with the gay radar of a dead raccoon, am starting to get it.   I believe he told Dagmar at this point, “You are married to a beautiful man”.

Okay fuck …

Dagmar laughing her exposed boobs off the entire time.  

The sauna ends and I think nothing of this episode, other than glad that’s over.   She and I exit and shower.  She now has wonderfully smooth skin.  I now have wonderfully smooth skin and a wife that is in hysterics laughing at me. 

Outside of the main sauna area there are, in the summer time, numerous lounge chairs.  I mean we all love a cancerous tan right?  I do …

As Dagmar and I sunned ourselves, au natural, mister “you are a beautiful man” came back.  To again assure Dagmar that she was still married to a beautiful man.

Seriously.

What happens exactly when the whole place goes nude.

What happens when the whole place goes nude is the best, if only, transition to three erections.   It’s also telling me this is a four or five part update, not just a three part. 

Remember that as soon as the Sauna opens until it closes, most days, there is a clothed part that consists of fun slides, wave pools, mineral baths and then there is the nude side that has, in addition to the sauna’s a large heated pool and a few other things like a massage  area and a bar.   These are separated by an imaginary line on the floor.  Beyond that line everyone is naked, except when they are not.  Which is usually.   Outside of the sauna or the pool most everyone wears a towel or a robe.

Yeah there’s always some naked dude or 80-year-old woman that’s just said, “fuck it, no one is checking me out anyway,” but generally, everyone wears something.

This, obviously, was not after 7 p.m. on a Saturday. It is however the place we go to.

At approximately 6:55 p.m. though, on the clothed side there’s an announcement over the intercom that I think says “hey clothed people the naked weirdos are about to come over to the clothed side of the place so flee if you want to,” or something like that.   And then it just sort of happens, some people leave, some strip, others stray in from the sauna side and by 7:15 it’s a done deal. 

Not that exciting except it leads directly to three erections which, I at least, found hysterical.

Again even after 7 p.m. most of the people who are still there remain wrapped in a towel or robe when not swimming or laying in the sun (in the summer it stay light here until almost 10 p.m.).  

Most people.

Three erections

I don’t remember what time of the evening it was but it was just after the whole place went nude.  While having a cigarette (outdoors – near the snack bar) during one of our trips I noticed three 15 or 16-year-old males seated at a small circular table yelling at each other and apparently masturbating.   Yeah, masturbating …

Now before you close your browser and draft an email where you call me gay and/or a disgusting liar hear me out.  The three were seated at the table in such a way that they couldn’t see what the other was doing, though it was painfully obvious and the fact that they were yelling at each other made it a train wreck that I could not turn away from.   

I should have stamped my cigarette out, fled the German sauna world forever and immediately entered therapy but I was baffled and wanted to see what the fuck they were going to do.  

Besides the obvious I mean.  

And the yelling?  It seemed like encouragement but I have no clue what they were saying because again I don’t speak German but who the HELL encourages their other friends while they are … I know, I know get to the point.

What these three adolescent masterminds had in mind was this.   At a certain point in the, literal mind you, circle jerk they stood up, boner all a-poppin and marched directly through main area in what I guess was an attempt to scandalize the masses and or get a ‘rise’ out of my gay friend in the salt sauna.   Prank wise I think it’s a 4 out of ten.   Balls though?  You bet.

‘Merica f’ yeah part 2, Tractors, good food, nice people and … HOLY CRAP IS THAT A FAKE BABY?


I have to admit, I was stumped. 

While “’Merica … F’ Yeah!  HOLY CRAP America its food, booze, anger and food — deep fried thoughts from Baltimore” blew away my previous best days here (I hate Valentine’s Day” and the always popular “naked in a mixed gender German sauna”) people were asking for the upstate New York update.   There were emails and a few personal requests.    

So basically seven of you read it … each of you will recieve your $10 check as promised.

I tried, honestly I tried.  Back home here Germany safe and sound in my own house, in my own bed I thought and I thought.  But really what the hell is funny about upstate New York? 

Answer: nothing.

That the lady at the diner near my Dad’s girl friend’s house called me honey while refilling my coffee that was sort of funny.   My Dad’s girl friend’s daughter Darcy DiBaise puts on an awesome dinner party (better than Dagmar and I ever could), that’s not funny.  She’s pretty funny and her five year old daughter Mia throws a mean left hook but the situation isn’t funny. 

Everyone makes really good home cooked food, not funny.  Everyone is super nice, also not funny.  

Everyone is FUCKING nice.   Aunts, uncles, cousins, spouses of cousins (cousins-in-law?) are all nice and further everyone is a lawyer, doctor or about to be elected president.  Shit what’s funny about that?  Also please don’t sue me.

Dagmar was not impressed

If there's ever a job for driving tractors up and down hills, I'm your man

My dad likes tractors, so much so that he bought one.   Well its farm country so what’s so funny about the fact that he bought, restored and uses a tractor in his retirement to plow snow, mow brush and tinker?  

It wasn’t a funny ride. 

So there you go.  Upstate New York, YOU’RE NOT FUNNY, in fact you’re a bit boring but I think you like it that way.  Hell, I think I like it that way.  

8-month-olds sit still for no camera, they're rebels like that.

8-month-olds sit still for no camera, they're rebels like that.

To top it off I had a great time , I met my nephew for the first time Edward Oliver and Dagmar immediately set off to kill Diane’s dog with rigorous death marches because she hates animals.

Maybe there’s a cow joke in here somewhere but Gary Larson I ain’t.

So basically I was stuck. Until yesterday when Dagmar came home from the gym and showed me this clip from the Today Show.

Please take the next six minutes and watch this clip.   I’m willing to risk your going away and not coming back because that clip is just the bizarre.

Okay, did you watch it?   If you’re at all like me right about now you’re thinking about suicide, gouging your eyes out our becoming Amish.   Basically, anything that will prevent that kind of news from entering your brain ever again you’re in favor of … amiright?

Jesus that's fucking retarded!

Jesus that's fucking retarded!

At about 1 minute in we get to look into Becky’s charming idea of fun freaking out older people with her fake baby.    Becky you’re going to give one of those women a heart attack with those shenanigans so knock it the hell off!    Also Becky I seriously suspect you should have your IQ tested and I’m fearful that you vote.    We know, that you know, it’s a doll and that makes it just that much fucking retarded. 

Then there’s Dori and Gary, who have their own goddamn real-life kids and grandkids by the way.   Gary.  Gary, Gary, Gary … Jesus man what happened to you?   You still have that penis right?   I mean okay I get it, she’s your wife and it’s worth it to you not to bitch about the dolls but don’t let her drag you to the convention for Christ’s sake.  What were you thinking sir?

Let’s take this quote from Fran Sullivan, who is SIXTY FUCKING TWO by the way.

“Children talk to their dolls, and they express their feelings toward their dolls,” she told Lauer. “And as a 40- or 50- or 60-year-old woman, you do the same thing. You’re still the same person you were when you were an 8-year-old.”

Maybe you’re the same person you were when you were 8 Fran?   Mentally it seems very likely you are the same as an 8-year-old but 60 year olds DO NOT TALK TO DOLLS AS IF THEY WERE REAL PEOPLE.   Fuck what’s next, a little show and tell with bobby in the janitor’s closet.

Did you catch old Becky and Karen about four minutes into the story? 

Oh boy! 

You know I’ve met Ann Curry.  She’s awesome, really nice, and friendly and I cannot understand how she kept herself from punching these two chicks back into reality.   I think she skipped part of the question she wanted to ask when she says “what made you want to have these dolls?”  I think she meant, “other than being bat-shit insane and obviously borderline retarded, what made you want to have these dolls?”

Not to call into question Ann’s professionalism but I think she missed a few questions.   Questions such as, this is all big joke to get on TV right?   Are both of you fucking kidding me?   Who let you into our studio?  I bet Katie Fucking Couric doesn’t have to do stupid shit like this and Are you all just really mad at your husbands and using these dolls as some sort of revenge?

When I first saw this I assumed it was an April Fools’ joke.  I was secretly hoping Mall Lauer would run in at the end of the segment and violently slay the dolls with a chainsaw or that Ann would, mid interview, reach over grab a doll and bite its head off. 

That, obviously and sadly, didn’t happen.