Monday, 15 December 2008

ich bin ein ausländer

So while I was in Germany I kept a little diary. Here it is.

What's the German words for day One?

Right after like a 6 hour journey I arrived at Munich airport and met Ko, (my German guide).
Ko lead me through a searies of trains (none of which were paid for), and finally ended up ren dez vousing with 5 other poets on a duble-decker "sub-urban train." I'd also like to take this opertunity to point out the inhearent cultural differences. No one has their feet on a seat, there's a little geeza offering a waiter survice for beer and I watched my new German friends holding onto their litter until they found a bin. We rode the train for about an hour and they all talked in German.
Eventually we arrived in Regensberg.
First thing upon arriving at the venue we were given free food and drinks. Being in Germany I went for the Currywurst met pomme.
Sausage and chips with curry ketchup.
Then it was into the gig. I was shown the backroom where I had permision to smoke and then after more free beer was hurded into the room of the Slam.

Oh My Days.
Litterally like 400 people.
Paying money to watch poetry.

I was a bit nervous upon taking to the stage as I was the only person in the room who couldn't speak German and so had not understood anything that had happened to that point.
I explained it was my first time infront of a crowd whom didn't have English as a first language and taught them 2 new English words,Clout and Giz.
In the end it seems like they were fucking well into it. so that's alright eh.

Apparently I'm staying in the venue tonight. they've got a perpouse made room for the acts to sleep in.
All in all my first day in Germany, and what is esentially my first time propally abroard, (if you don't count the numerouse Amsterdam trips), has been more than successful.
I like Germans
They ain't nothinbg like what I've been conditioned to think they'd be like

Tag Zwei (german for day Two)

Yeah work up today in a room with 4 German guys all of us sleeping in our own pair of bunk beds.
Not what I'm used to to be honest.
Are bunkbeds called pairs or sets?
I had a quick duschen (shower) then we went and got the train back to München (Munich).
I tell you what Germans seem to be really good at judging distance all ways saying things like "Yeah it's about 160 kilometers" or "Its only 90 meters"
See I'm a terible judge of distance so I don't know if there right.

Anyway when we got back we went to essen (eat) some traditional essen (food, yeah same word, crazy init).
I ordered a thing that turned out to be like a pile of beef and a pile of potatoes. Mate. Half way through I stopped and looked at my plait and fucking hell it was still massive.
While I was there I decided to drink a drink. (essen's not sounding so crazy now eh).
Then I checked out Lederhosen (you know what that is and if not then google it)
Thing is it costs like 550 Euroes so I didn't get none.
Then Rayl my new German mate had organised entertainment for me for the afternoon/evening.
Check his myspace by hitting his name he's a ledgend init.

I wanted to go see my friend Halil today but he lives about 160 kilometers away and I'm short on Euros foe now. Hopefully I'll see him tomorrow.

Thats over half way through my Germany trip now but they tell me tomorrow night's gunna be the one so I'm looking forward to it.

Was ist der Englisch für tag drei?

This morning Rayl woke me up around 1 o'clock with a cup of tea and some German breakfast sausage and swiss cream-cheese on toast.
Man that shit was tastey. seriously if I think about it I can still taste it.
We chilled for a bit he played me music by Audio 88 and Misanthrope I played him Kate Tempest and Sound of Rum. (click names for myspaces).

About 6 o'clock we went to prepare for the Munich slam.

Now anyone familer with slam poetry will probably have some idea of the usual rules. The rules here were a little different and to be honest the whole thing benifitted from the change in convention.
Here instead of 3 minutes each and a score card system, each poet has 10 minutes and after 5 have performed the audience vote via applores/general noise making.The winner goes on to face the winner of the next round in the final where each poet does 1 poem.
What this means is that essential every poet in the slam is a feature and the standard is high.
I'd like to point out that I was in the slam, but I didn't win my group. I blame it on the fact that I was the only person performing in English but to honest didn't feel the disapointment I usually assosiate with getting knocked out of slams in the UK.

I think I might try and put a little slam together in the UK following Rayl's format.

Some other key differences between our two countries that became apparent today.
This difference is in how we imbibe our controlled substances.
Yep smoking and drinking.

In Germany you have to drink beer all day with everything you do.
Anyone who's been out on't'lash with me'll be able to confirm that I'm not really much of a drinker so there were times when I was struggeling to say the least.

Smoking indoors has been banned in Germany for about a year but the rules are very vaige. for example we were allowed to smoke in the club before people came in and then again when most had left. You just can't smoke when it's busy.
Probably for the best 'cos at it's peek there were around 600 people in there and very poor ventilation. One girl in the audience actually collapsed and had to be carried to the door for air.
Heinner told me that this happens everytime sometimes 3 or 4 in one night.
After the slam me and Rayl did some hard drinking late into the night and talked about not understanding women, (turns out that's the same in any language. )

I have to go back to England now, I'm actually sat in the airport as I write this waiting to board my flight.
As far as my first international tour goes I feel like it was a great success, I've seen a beautiful country and made some amazing new friends. It's really opened a door for me.

So don't worry Deutschland Berko will be back, sooner rather than later.
Oh I also got asked yesterday if I'd perform at the newly formed Madrid Slam in April or May, so who knows maybe this is the start of EuroBerko tour de internationale. (Probably have to learn another language eh, my English is often missunderstood in England so Europ might get a little tricky).

Saturday, 13 December 2008

It's against nature!!!

Yu know prior to this weekend I'd been on 4 plains in my whole life. Not only that but they were all in the last 2 years.
I reckon part of it is thought I might be afraid of flying.
Well this weekend I'm doubling my life-time's statistic.
Also I've only ever been on RyanAir or EasyJet where you don't get shit all.
This time I was with KLM and as it turns out I get free stuff.
So I enjoyed it alot more.

plain 1 KL1424
11.20 Birmingham-Amsterdam
Seat 11B

Neighboring passengers:
Left: Dutch man with very well behaved baby.
Right: Brummy business twat talking to a second twat about the fat girl he left in his hotel room.

Free shit: Minute Maid Jus D'Orange150ml. 8xTuc biscuit.

plane 2 KL1797
15.15 Amsterdam-Munich
Seat 07B

Neighboring passengers:
Left: Fairly attractive Europian girl who would probably be less attractive if she wasn't foriegn.
Right: The man who looks at me like I've dissapointed him, Probably English or German.

Free shit: Prince, ChocoPrince Vanillesmaak. Terra Andina Sauvignon Blanc-Chardonnay, (only got this 'cos of the blog name).

So that was the way there.

plain 3 KL1794
11.50 Munich-Amsterdam
Seat 20F (window seat badman).

Neighboring passengers:
Left: 2 thick-necked German lads reading about German cars in a German magazine.
Right:The sky

Free shit: Prince ChocoPrince; 8xTuc Pocket; Granini Apple Juice from a carton (No expence spared eh).

Now my connection in Amsterdam was like a 2 and a half hour wait and it had been over 3 hours since I smoked a roll-up.

Thankfully I managed to find this smoking area. It's a bit like a greenhouse except full of other peoples smoke. To be honest it was fucking awful.

plane 4 KL1429
15.40 Amsterdam-Birmingham
Seat 11D Aisle (Row 11 on this flight was the emergancy exit row and before take off the cabin crew lady told me and the 2 othe people in the row that in the event of an emergancy we were in charge of opening it. Crazy I didn't realise that they wanted me to have so much responcibility).

Neighboring passengers:
Left: Nobody
Right: An English man and his son. The most significant thing about this is that they were also on my first flight and I had laughed to myself at the obvious biological connection.

Free shit: ChockoPrince but I didn't even want it sick of them now, gave it to the lad he fucking loves um. Minute Maid Jus de Pomme, not fizzy but still in a can.

So there you go. Turns out I ain't afraid of flying. I also quite like the sterile atmosphere of antissipation and the intermate frisking by lacluster security gards that comes with the whole airport process. Need to find a Buroe du Change now got some Euros need switching up into pounds.

One hour ahead

Yu know what I'm thinking.
When I'm in Germany and it's nine o'clock and in England it's eight o'clock yeah.
or vica versa
(probably a German word or pair of words whatever).
Well any way we all know about that hour a head bit that the world worked out so as time was the same everywhere and that day is always day.

Well where does THAT LINE come.
is it an instant thing like you cross the line and it's an hour later.
cos if thats the case and your ten years old living on the edge of the "Early-side" of That Line then check this out.
Here's what you should do.
Start hanging out with kids who live on the other side.
Yep, you heard me chill with the othersiders.
That way when it's like 8 o'clock and there all going in you can go and stand outside their houses so they see you're still out and they'll get mad jelouse and you'll look well cool.

Right I know what yu thinking.
You're all like,
"yo Berko if you actually want anyone to dedicate their preshus time to reading the nonsence you write in yu blog then you actually have to write blogs."
and yeah that's fair enough.
I mean I'm the first to admit, I have been a bit slack with the old reporting on mundanity. 

But I'm going to claim that it's not completely my fault.

I've been ill see. it's that crazy sneezing, runny nose, can't quite cough hard enough to get the phlem out kind of wintery illness and I've been it's bitch for a few weeks now.
Don't get me wrong it's not like i'm immobile or ownt. just feeling a bit shit.

The big news for regular readers is that I've had to sign off
No job as such but I'm in Germany this weekend and they don't like you just like fucking off to Europe chasing the old Euros when they're paying you to be seeking gainfull employment.

Anyone reading this in Germany might want to come see me in the flesh and if that's the case I'll be at the Munich Slam on Sunday night. 
If you are reading this any time after that or don't live in Germany then sorry.

In other news fans of me cutting my own hair will no doubt be delighted to learn that I've done it again.

Sorry to say the mullet has gone. Although any one who's partial to hairstyles that make you look like you reside in a house on wheels will surely be delighted to see the off-centre rat's-tail I'm currently rocking.

Pictures to follow tomorrow sorry flat battery on my phone so I can't bluetooth it to my McLapbook and I'm also out sourcing photography on this trip to my new friends Rhyl, Ko, Alex, Dorean and Heinen 
I've got like 5 unpublished blogs on the stickies init. 
So don't worry shit's gunna be fireing in the next few days.