Na, super – nachdem ich nun leider einen negativen Bescheid von der sogenannten Agentur für Arbeit bekommen habe ist klar, dass ich nicht den Luxus einer
angemessenen sich jedenfalls minimal auskennenden Behandlung erfahren werde. Mit der Agentur für Arbeit war abgesprochen, dass ich einfach in der Woche bevor ich auf eine der von mir noch zu besuchenden Konferenzen fahre anrufe und Bescheid sage. (Es herrscht ja Anwesenheitspflicht, dass heisst ich muss immer schön daheim sitzen und warten, denn es kann ja sein das mir von heute auf morgen eine super Arbeitsstelle zugewiesen wird.) Nun ja, da aber nicht mehr die Agentur für Arbeit für mich zuständig ist, sondern eines der zu Recht berüchtigten JobCenter, gilt diese Abmachung nicht mehr. So wurde mir bei meinem heutigen Anruf erfreulicherweise mitgeteilt, dass ich doch bitte am Montag vorstellig werden solle. Da darf ich mich dafür rechtfertigen, dass ich Himmel und Erde in Bewegung gesetzt habe damit jemand den Flug und die Konferenzgebühr für mich bezahlt, dass ich ein Stipendium von der Kanadischen Soziogischen Gesellschaft ergattert und einen großzügigen Doktorvater habe, der mir auch aushilft. Ist ja nicht so, dass der deutsche Arbeitsmarkt mit Stellen reich gesegnet wär und das eine der wenigen Möglichkeiten, die einem bleiben darin besteht, die in Deutschland teuer bezahlte Ausbildung woanders zur Verfügung zu stellen.
So lohnt die wunderbar repressive Gesetzgebung Engagement und Initiative und so werden Arbeitplätze geschaffen. Woanders. Bleibt allgemein nur zu sagen: Vielen Dank liebe Sozial- und Christdemokraten. Ach ja, die Grünen haben ja auch mitregiert. Auch vielen Dank.
Und mir geht es noch gut, das sollte man nicht vergessen – wenn ich sehe (und vor allem höre, denn es ist ja nicht so, dass die Privatsphäre der Vorsprechenden im JobCenter in irgendeiner Weise gewahrt werden würde), wie andere Leute im JobCenter behandelt werden…
Archive for the ‘berlin’ Category
Think about it…
My arrival two days ago was perfect. Entering the plane in Oslo in cold and cloudy weather, rising above the clouds to fly while the sun is sinking down. Then, landing in Berlin. Evening sky, warm breeze. Not a lot of people around. Walking to my platform at Schönefeld station, I was asked by a somewhat drunk mid-forties working style man:
Wo jehtsn ſzur S-Bahn hier? And I gave the correct, easily-followed answer. Good deed.
After waiting for fifteen minutes enjoying the pleasant weather, the S-Bahn arrived and transported me graciously and rockingly down to Alexanderplatz, where I changed to the U-Bahn line 2. Leaving the U-Bahn at Senefelder Platz, I wandered over to Kleopatra, bought myself a decent Döner Kebab for € 2.30, and walked over to my apartment, passing people who sit outside of cafés and bars. Entering my apartment, letting down the book-heavy traveling backpack, opening the balcony door and sinking down into the comfortable camping chair, watching people pass by below, munching away at the Döner, and sighing happily from time to time.
That’s how I like my arrivals in Berlin.
Besonders in der Aneinanderreihung ein unterhaltsames Wort. Weniger allerdings in der praktischen Ausführung. Selbst bis in Ausland verfolgen sie einen – gestern erst hier in Oslo beim Umzug geholfen. Und – Überraschung – mal wieder ganz nach Art des letzten oder besser nahezu einzigen Helfers in der Not. Wenn man schon sonst keinen Sport macht. Zumal das Wetter ganz famos war und Kerstin und ich nur schubweise (immer zur Anlieferung neuer Kartons) schuften mussten. Zwischendurch Zeit für Balkonien und poofen auffem Sofa.
Gut ist, dass hier ein normaler, wenn auch später Frühling durch die Lüfte flattert. Daheim scheint der Übergang ja mehr so vom Winter direkt in den Sommer zu gehen.
Gut ist auch, dass es sich derzeit ganz angenehm schreibt und ich zuversichtlich bin, meinen Einzelbeitrag für den von Lars und mir herausgegebenen Band noch hier in Oslo fertig zu stellen. Vielleicht schaffe ich es danach dann ja auch wieder, etwas fleißiger zu bloggen…
Yup, the regularity of seasons. What a nice thing. Especially now that it becomes possible again to stir your hot chocolate on the balcony while peeking at the first sprouts that penetrate the outer shell of branches and soil.
It’s good to be home again after a prolonged period of traveling. The first week was consumed by working my way through the piles of physical and electronic mail, washing, organizing, filling a new book shelf, registering as being unemployed beginning April 15th, and writing my first job application in more than three years. We’ll see how things develop…
Olli is carrying around his new bag, when I’m in a café I tend to look at the other guests more closely, scanning for movie celebrities, the radio program features my favorite cinema guru, Knut Elstermann, more often; short: it’s Berlinale time!
I personally am too phlegmatic to get up early, queue, check out programs and schedule and so forth, so I have to rely and good friends who ask me to accompany them when they have a spare ticket. Luckily, they exist and thanks to Berit I saw my first Berlinale 2006 movie yesterday.
It was Women Liang or You and Me, the opening movie of the adolescent movie feature/ competition 14plus. An excellent movie about a girl who moves to the city to study and rents a small shed-like room from an old woman. Those two, the young women and the old landlady are similar in character: stubborn, haughty, loyal, direct – they are fascinating women, full characters and seeing them clash and care was a great experience. The actresses are very impressive. A slow movie with a very tender and personal camera. Definitely to be recommended.
If you like good music… go to the Hotelbar on January 31st of the wonderful year 2006. The Early Tapes will be playing. You will be enchanted by the groove of the music, the charme of the lyrics and the handsome line-up! And don’t forget to bring loads of money for merchandising goods.
The end of this year’s leisure season has come. The future months will show if it came just on time or too late… I am seriously behind schedule with my dissertation therefore having at least several weeks of highly concentrated work in front of me – including a disruption caused by our college’s conference in October.
To smoothen the switch I took a relatively early train from Buchholz to Berlin. The hope is that I will only need this day for going from feeding the washing machine, re-organizing my stuff, staring mindlessly into thin air, distributing and caressing birthday presents, updating and synchronizing my computers, eating homemade plum pie, feeling disoriented, going through accumulated mail and odd household jobs via the fearsome afraid-to-start-working procrastination to actual page-production mode. The updating-my-blog phase is now done with at least.
I have wanted to move my trusty old cereus cactus to a new, larger pot for at least 10 years. I have this cactus (it is about two meters high) since sometime in the early eighties which means for more than twenty years. It has suffered many injuries, went through diseases, dismemberments, was infested by scales and generally not always treated very well. Nonetheless, it has survived and stayed with me, accompanying me through at least 10 different apartments, occupying sometimes nicer and sometimes more remote places in them. Now he’s getting a breath of fresh earth, water, air, and sun outside on the balcony. Good chap.
I also moved Junior, our small banana plant, to the now vacant pot which offers more space for Junior to spread it’s roots and develop into a huge tropical banana-bunches-bearing tree!
There is a lot of stuff that should have been posted here. I’ve seen several movies – the new Woody Allen Melinda and Melinda, Willenbrock starring the down-to-reality Axel Prahl, and Million Dollar Baby by and with Clint Eastwood. All of these movies are worth a visit. Another thing which is always worth a visit is the beautiful city of Hamburg. I was lucky and had the opportunity to be there last weekend. The weather was absolutely perfect. I visited several friends, strolled along the Elbe, met Kerstin who was able to leave Kopenhagen for the weekend, together went to and enjoyed Anja’s, Anke’s and Heike’s 90th birthday, made a gorgeous two hour revival bicycle tour through the spring-blossoming western vicinity of Buchholz, spent a few hours in a school sports hall watching kids play handball, and did my share of sauna-ing. Perfect weekend, indeed.
Last Saturday, I went to a party in Tini’s and Andi’s house in Kreuzberg (happy birthday Tini!) which had a pretty scary motto: Pimp your Kopf. Inspired by the idea Marc gave me, I took out scissors and cardboard paper to cut myself a Mitra. Mitra? Yup, and thats why I was greeted by a crowd of drunken Erasmus students shouting “Paparazzi!” It took me more than a few minutes before I overcame my confusion about the fact that I did not carry any cameras with me but people still kept on saying “Paparazzi!” to me and enjoyed themselves tremendously. Could they interpret the white hat as a cook’s hat, perhaps the cook of the excellent Italian restaurant here in Prenzlauer Berg that is called Paparazzi? Finally, I figured it out: they were saying “Papa Ratzi!” – and quite correctly they did. After this obstacle to mental relaxation on the part of yours truly was overcome, the same had a very good time…
Yesterday Olli and I enjoyed our first breakfast. Complete with a wide selection of Greek cheeses, boiled eggs, a new cereal bought at Lidl around the corner. They are called Nougat Pillows – not as bad as I feared, but not convincing either. What I am really looking for is a cheap version of Toppas. Erm. Back to topic. Today we had another balcony breakfast, enjoyed the newly planted flowers, and the first sprouts on some of our long-time balcony inhabitants. Olli then insisted that we should play some basketball on the sports yard across the street. I was somewhat disinclined to involve myself in physical activity and hoped that we don’t have a working pump to bring the basketball into shape. However, Olli didn’t let himself be irritated by my lack of inspiration, found a pump, and off we went. Good decision. We had a fun time, I think I got a small sunburn in my face, and we met Esther, an FU direct exchange student from the Twin Cities with whom we played basketball for a while. This is what sports are for: Völkerfreundschaft! Now, I have emptied a big glass of banana shake, took a cold shower, and feel a bit creaky in the joints but nonetheless quite swell. A promising season has begun.
Back again from the land of classic profiles. We had a great time, met many nice people, saw a few piles of stone, and got to know quite a few new and delicious dishes and beverages. Want to hear an anecdote? Let me think… Kerstin made an observation that has good anecdotal value: Here in Germany, dogs usually do live their lives accompanying the humans they belong to. They walk around with them, they sleep in the same houses, they eat food that is served them personally. In Greece, there is not only a human population in settlements, there is also an almost independant population of dogs. They hang out with other dogs, they eat with them, sleep in packs, trot along the trottoir with other dogs and generally ignore humans (except for trying to pay attention to cars and other dangers). Funny to watch them be dogs that are different from local dogs. Doggier, I would say. I also felt less threatened by those dogs and I saw fewer piles of dog shit in Athens than here in Berlin.
This weekend I had ample opportunity to hone my skills as a fan. The most challenging aspect of this endeavour was the difference between the acts that I was participating in: On Friday, a Ska-Punk concert; yesterday, Pop-Music at the German qualification for the European Song Contest.
The concert of the Skatoons took place in the Tommy Weissbecker Haus in Berlin Kreuzberg. An adequate location. There were quite a few kids there, and not few of the female population was inspired by Avril Lavigne-ness. The concert was great fun, even though several members of the Band were ill or still recovering from illness. Fast rythms, great ska-brass-blasting-sounds and a fun crew on the stage. I have to admit that my oldest friend Henning is part of the Band, along with others that I know like Inga, Tobe, and Holle, therefore I might have been slightly non-objective in my judgement. However, I had the opportunity to watch kids that knew the lyrics of the songs they played (not of the cover versions!), and they seemed to have a lot of fun, too. Buy their records, visit their website, dance to their music!
Change of subject; different scene altogether. A bunch of friends and yours truly are in the Arena in Berlin Treptow, entering the set for the European Song Contest qualification. We were cheering for Mia, a good friend of my apartment mate Olli. It was warm there too, though much less sweaty, and more heads with hair on top were present. We had excellent – the best, I would say – seats right at the side of the catwalk that belonged to the stage set, and enjoyed a perfect view on the performances. Which weren’t always that great, sadly. Nonetheless, we enjoyed the event immensely, cheered as much as we could every time Mia Aegerter was mentioned or visible on stage and hoped the best for her. Bad luck. Somebody else had more active fans voting for their star and Mia did not qualify… I liked her performance of the song Alive on stage – surely the vote has not a lot to do with her performance though. Reinhold Beckmann, the moderator, was terrible: neither funny nor clever nor sincere. The one shining light (hehe) for me was: Emma the former Spice Girl. The choreography of her dancing crew on stage was really funny, and really well done. I can’t recall much of the song, but the performace was great. What is even better: when she passed our seats I could not resist and hollered
Emma!! and received a charming smile from a real, life Spice Girl! What a day…
No, this is not the first sentence of a novel that I am writing. Though it would actually be a good first sentence. Why would I like this sentence but still not use it in a novel? Well, the first person who guesses correctly will be invited to a free beverage of her or his choice!
Instead of a famous novel I present you with a short anecdote from the daily affairs of yours truly. Currently I am in Oslo – in the train from the airport to Oslo, to be exact – and sitting in this train comes as a surprise to me. This morning I thought that I would instead be sitting in a train from the airport Berlin Schönefeld to my humble apartment in Prenzlauer Berg right now. Well, it seems that I got something about the today’s date wrong. As the check-in lady of Norwegian told me with a hearty laugh, my flight will be leaving tomorrow, not today. Seems I got something wrong about today’s date and the date written on my ticket. Fine, this is funny, and I like a good laugh. However, if the lady would have known how I came to Oslo she might have been even more amused, more amused by the exact same amount that I have been more frustrated…
The thing is, when I sat in the train to Berlin Schönefeld Thursday last week, I was a bit less relaxed than I am now, and would most certainly have refrained from writing down anecdotes. I was quite anxious instead. The Tram had been late before I entered the S-Bahn to the airport. The S-Bahn was delayed even more. Minutes were passing quite quickly, the train finally arrived, I was running to the airport with a big load on my back, arrived 30 minutes before take-off, and they did not let me check in anymore. No hearty laughs there. So, last week, I missed the flight that I was supposed to have taken. (I had to pay the full price for a new ticket the following day – Norwegian might be a cheap airline, but it certainly is not a very flexible airline.) This week I am a day to early. *sighs* What does this tell me? Traveling by train is better than traveling by plane. Another possible conclusion would be that it be more comfortable if I knew when to be where and what to do there instead of just drifting through life.
Nun bin ich wieder ein ordentlicher Staatsbürger. Nachdem ich vor längerer Zeit meinen Perso verschlust habe, bin ich nun wieder im Besitz eines solchen staatsbürgerlichen Dokuments. Selbiges weist auch einige neue Kopierschutzmechanismen (komische Hologramme und so) auf, mit denen mein alter Perso nicht hätte mithalten können. Also alles viel besser jetzt? Mitnichten. Nun komme ich nämlich in die missliche Lage, mir für die beiden um die Ecke liegenden Videotheken einen Leihausweis besorgen zu können. Bisher ging das nicht, weshalb Kerstin und Olli den lästigen Gang zur Videothek absolvieren mussten, während meine Anwesenheit eher fakultativer Natur war. Früher war alles besser.
Morgen fahr ich übrigens das erste Mal wieder nach Darmstadt. Da sollte doch schon diese eine Jahreszeit ihr blaues Band feist am flattern haben. (Wobei ich mich ja nicht beschweren möchte: unser Kirschbaum verwandelt sich derzeit in eine riesige rosa Wolke, was ja ein kaum zu übertreffender, erhabender Anblick ist, der auch dem gelangweiltesten Prenzelberger einen unschick offenen Mund verpasst und die Maske der Desinteressiertheit für einen Moment abblättern lässt.) So, jetzt wird Wäsche aufgehangen und weiter artikelt.