1. i’ve survived summer, the most perilous time of year for an elberry. Spring and autumn are always the seasons of change for me, after the hard stasis of summer & winter. At the moment i feel like the last rat on a sinking ship, as the whole of Western Europe will collapse into Balkans-style civil war in the next ten years or so; and a surprising number of my colleagues are quitting:
1.1 The Cop: he was knocked off his bike, and then got a complaint from a hotel where he’d taught a McLingua crash course for a large engineering company. His version runs that everything was disorganised, no one knew where equipment was, and in true Cop fashion he let them know this was unacceptable. i dare say he got in people’s faces, and i can’t imagine him going beyond the limits of standard venomous German grumbling, but he has an aura of violence which amplifies matters somewhat; in this, similar to Morgana who could say things which, on paper, would sound merely aggressive and nasty, but with her evil goblin/Borderline look, talking with her was somewhat akin to being stuffed in a bag with a dozen rabid raccoons, and then being thrown into the sea, and eaten by a shark.
The Cop had always nurtured the illusion that, because he can be a good teacher (i.e. when students cooperate fully), and is reliable, McLingua valued and respected him. After his bike accident none of the management or sales team even asked if he was okay (he had “bone bruising” and could hardly walk, but continued working for McLingua). And then they chided him for getting in the face of the incompetent hotel staff. He had, apparently, garnered a reputation as a Nazi, amusing given he is a Zionist and i’m far more to the so-called Right, but then i don’t look the part.
The Cop has a rich wife and doesn’t need money, so quit. It’s quite a shock, strange as it sounds, for he was a decade-long-staple of the McLingua teachers, one of the few who persisted while young pampered millennials came & went. It’s like David Bowie dying all over again.
1.2 Big Ben – an American, think i wrote about him earlier but can’t find the post (perhaps deleted). He’s probably mid-30s, well over 6 foot, fat, alcoholic, from some rich man town outside Detroit, left his family when he was a teen and worked construction, went to university and studied History, speaks now a faintly-American English accent, vaguely 19th Century to my ears; he said he spent some time in his late teens locked in a room watching Anthony Hopkins films, and absorbed the voice. A deeply strange individual, he speaks excellent German, doesn’t read but speaks literate English (unlike most of my colleagues), is a fan of shows like True Detective and The Thick of It. i always found him fascinating to talk to, but at the same time couldn’t trust or get a sense for whoever he really was – perhaps much as the lesser man has always responded to me, which suggests Big Ben is actually the Übermensch, by god.
A month ago he told me he had to give up alcohol after a hernia, and also feels generally weakened by “German meat” – he said he visited his family in America and “after eating American chicken, I felt power in my body again”. He does, at times, radiate a slightly serial killer vibe. And now he will move back to America, to eat meat, after a decade of McLingua.
Curiously, he is a very good teacher; between classes he groans lugubriously about the job – much the same problems i have – but his students universally admired him, and i walked in on one of his classes and was faced with a totally different persona. As he said, when last we met, – I never applied myself to this job. I couldn’t accept this as a career, so I never learnt anything about how to teach languages, or teach anything. This was always temporary. But then it went on too long to be temporary.
– What are you going to do back in America? i asked.
– Anything except this. I have to get my car fixed up, then I want to drive around. There are wastelands, like Mad Max territory but without the cannibals and warlords, there’s just nothing there. I’d like to drive around these places, eating meat and feeling strong again. Germany took my balls away. I have to regrow them.
1.3 Hillary – a hipster from, of all places, Texas, probably early 30s, utterly deracinated (as California Jesus noted “she don’t be speaking or dressing like no American”), a weird hybrid accent, weird lesbian haircut, lived a few years in Helsinki without learning any Finnish (“only the whores go to Helsinki”), has worked mostly in IT & Marketing. She worked at McLingua for about two months before getting a real job in Marketing. Our first conversation as follows, about a week after Brexit:
Hillary: Oh yeah, you’re, like, a Brit, that’s fantastic. So will Brexit affect you here?
elberry: Probably, but i voted for it so i can hardly complain.
Hillary: What? Like, you voted in Brexit, or you voted to leave?
elberry: i voted to Leave, by god.
Hillary: Oh. And you regret it now?
elberry: What? No, i’m absolutely delighted.
After this, all our interactions were marked by a sneering hostility on her part, and shrugs on mine. Like many women she is a natural scold and know-it-all who enjoys policing others, witness the following conversation in the teacher room:
elberry: That Bundeswehr class was pretty cool.
Toddball: A lot of beards.
elberry: But real beards, not hipster beards.
Toddball: Yeah, them niggaz weren’t hipsters.
elberry: You should only be allowed a beard if you’ve been trained to kill. It makes me sick to see hipsters with beards, when they’re just vegan Che Guevara-loving losers who couldn’t kill a squirrel with an Uzi pen.
Hillary [listening the whole time with a tense female look]: Whoah! There’s a lot of stereotyping going on here!
elberry: Yeah, there is. [elberry leaves without another word]
i was puzzled by her “do you regret it” question, then realised she’d been reading BBC and Guardian articles claiming that people voted to Leave as if on a whim and then immediately regretted it, before anything had actually happened (these articles came out within a few days, and so far nothing at all has happened politically). She probably also believes the stories that Britain is suddenly suffering a Brexit-earthquake-driven tsunami of racist massacres, and the only solution is to reverse the referendum and restrict future voting rights to Guardian-reading millennials who live in London, because they know best.
Nasty piece of work, really.
1.4 Two other teachers are leaving soon, both nice, neither remarkable or blogworthy. They will probably die in a ditch.
2. i’ve now been in Germany just over 7 years. Astonishing – that i speak still virtually no German (by my standards), can’t read anything serious without intense effort. i thought about relocating to Eastern Europe, as Germany will soonish collapse into civil war. i can predict that one of the safest places on the planet will be Slovakia, for the simple reason that the Viking lives there, and while he often says things like “God has plans for me, He does not want me gallivanting about having fun” he also has an odd habit of always living in the safest places on the planet, which are also the only places someone like him could survive. If he ever leaves Slovakia, you can be sure the Major Shit is going to go down there within the next few years.
But i feel rooted here, especially in Bavaria. There seems, as best i can discern, a kind of presence here, protecting the natural human culture – it could be that the culture has always been a bit different to “Germany”, so it resists in some sense the crass tide of modernity. i note many Leftist assholes come here for work, and live in quiet villages and towns, and then decry the CSU for trying to protect the state from millions of 3rd World rapists. The Leftists appreciate the safety and order, and don’t understand these exist because of the Catholicism, the conservatism, the traditions they hate and would destroy. Sorry, pal, but that’s the way it is – if you want to live in a cool hipster city where the police don’t do anything, and you’re surrounded by sand peoples, that’s fine, but you’ve also got to accept you’re going to get raped on average four times a week, and your dog will be stolen and made into a kebab, and your daughter will eat it, before she gets raped by a 42-year-old Algerian who will escape prison because he says he’s a 12-year-old Syrian called Mohammed, all praise the prophet.
3. i have wanted to leave this job for the last 4 years but there’s nothing else i could do, save cleaning and bar work, neither of which appeal. And an office job would drive me crazy now. So i try to make the best of it; i enjoy most of my classes, it is merely that i feel how little of my mind and knowledge is engaged – so today, i managed to talk about metallurgy with a steel Sales Engineer, and as is my wont talked about WW2 in terms of raw material supplies, and then with some regret turned back to the shitty McLingua books, with a heartfelt, – Well, i suppose we’d better get started on this chapter.
As Europe – thanks to people like Hillary – is now inexorably plunging into the great Race War, this all seems rather besides the point, but i take a certain pleasure in the fact that the Sales Engineer was a very genteel North African in his 50s, and the other student a kind of dim but sweet Turkish woman, and i hope that they survive the coming slaughter, that if the Titanic is going down, there are enough lifeboats for the good eggs. Not likely, of course, but if anything human survives the coming War i’ll count that a victory.