Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Inchoate nodus

Two words I learned in my word-a-day calendar. Today's word is descry. Yes, I'm interesting at dinner parties.

I'm listening to the new Ryan Adams' album, "Easy Tiger" and this is my second or third listen and it's starting to grow on me. I'm pooped, it's been a full day, let me tell you what happened:

Woke up at 7am totally shocked awake, needed to really make me wake up this morning but it was raining hard and not very motivating. I was wet and damp and uncomfortable on the tram into town, had a good lesson at 8am, went around the corner and had another good lesson with 4 expensive lawyers for another hour, then walked up another 8 minutes into the heart of town, chatted with two other teachers, one from England and the other from Denmark, then taught a class on WWII to 12 German college students. I was fucking shocked how little they seemed to know about it. I think they just don't like talking about it. I asked them many good questions, e.g., Do you think they should sell Mein Kampf in Germany? or Have you ever been to a concentration camp? They didn't know, not ONE of them when WWII started. Only ONE of them had an opinion about the Reichstag fire in 1932 or 1933. I don't expect you to necessarily know about that but these are major moments in German history. It was an interesting talk.

After that I took the tram home and tried to relax. It's been a super tough last week for me and I was trying to come to grips with the fact that I didn't have to work that night from 6-9pm like I normally have to. I then chilled in my chair in my bedroom and corrected the last 11 tests I will have to grade for many many months. It felt good. Something important that I absolutely HAD to do before I left, finished today.

My roommate, Lena, came home around 2.30pm and then we cooked two pieces of pork schnitzel in a pepper sauce with mushrooms and home potatoes. I then finished the last 4 of the 11 tests, put on my jogging shoes an hour later and had a hot and humid and sunny jog of 35 minutes, took a cool shower and then started to organize some of my stuff, namely my desk area. It was much to cluttered and I wanted to get it scaled down a bit. I think sometimes that Assiyeah and I have too much small chaos in our lives and I would like very much to reduce that if possible.

Lena got home from class around 8 and we made a really tasty salad that had corn, orange pepper, ham, grated swiss cheese and a balsamic vinagarette. Then I went back to cleaning, organizing. Now it's 10.46pm and I'm drinking a beer, officially satisfied with everything I got done today. It's not too often you can say that.



At 9:21 PM, Blogger Howard Brodsly said...

I was impressed with what you said about the younger Germans not knowing their history. I thought they did. I know that there ae a lot of German youth that visits Israel to learn and try to understand.

WHat was your opinion of the "camps"

At 10:51 PM, Blogger hell.yes. said...

I made the experience that if you know about WWII as a German person then a LOT of people (particularly the English) will call you a "nazi". Secondly, I prefer to forget about that chapter of German history, what's so wrong about that?! If we don't want to talk about it, why do other people think they have to right to remind us of it all the time? It's done, lets get over it and "gut is". Or do Americans constantly want to talk about how they persuaded and killed all the natives?!

At 10:51 PM, Blogger hell.yes. said...

ps - I was at a camp.

At 2:34 PM, Blogger Jason said...

No, actually I was doing my job "hell yes". I teach American History at one school and the topic was WWII. My job was to find out what they knew, give them another perspective, for example why English people and Americans have completely different perspectives of nazis, namely because no bombs from the Germans dropped on American soil but hundreds fell in England. The feeling between the two is different.

Trust me, I am someone who doesn't think that Germans have to be reminded of it constantly but they sure as hell better know what happened. Complicity becomes guilt, especially the second time around.



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