Niemand ausser mir

The weather here is gorgeous. Unfortunately, I have to work this weekend. My company is re-designing its website. The current version was originally designed and set up years ago by none other than PapaScott. It has served us very well and is very advanced for what it is, but it needs to be put out to pasture. The CMS, which was supposed to handle a few hundred static pages, now stores around 6,000 static html pages. That’s right. 6,000. Static. HTML. Pages. Those of you, whose mouth just fell open, know what kind of fucking hell I’m dealing with. These are all stored in a database but that needed to be imported into MySQL. Ooooooh! Fun!!

So for the last 6 months I’ve been working with a local company here on the redesign. Of course neither party knew exactly how complicated it would actually end up being and of course it ended up costing more than originally planned, but that was smoothed out with the powers that be. It took a while to convince others that such a move was necessary, hence the obscene number of pages, but I think we’ll all be happy with the final result.

It should go online this week. I said that last week, and 3 weeks before that, and 2 months ago and 4 months ago but I think this week it might actually happen. I just have to clean up loose ends and fix a few bugs.

This has been driving me crazy for the longest time. I can’t wait till it goes online. I will need a serious vacation after this.

As an aside, here are some things you should know:
IE is the biggest piece of shit browser ever.
IE5 for Mac is even a bit worse.
When it comes to writing CSS for IE5 Mac and you are tearing your hair out trying to stop it from blowing your beautiful layout to smithereens, the IE5/Mac Band Pass Filter can help.

If there is something in your stylesheet that you don’t want IE5/Mac to see…

/* begin hack \*/
#Put it here
/* end hack */

If there is something in your stylesheet that you want only IE5/Mac to see…

/* begin hack \*//*/
#Put it here
/* end hack */


I’ve received this link from a few Germans asking if it is for real. It appears to be.

Our goal was to create the most comfortable and safe toilet for Large-Size people in the market. The other challenge was to make a toilet that could also be used by any size person. The final result was the creation of a “SIZE FRIENDLY TOILET”.

Not to disparage anybody that might have a real need for this, but the thing looks like a gun turret. For those who ask if it really necessary, here you can see the difference.

Greatly exaggerated

Another example of wonderful German bureaucracy: “You’re Dead, We’ve Checked the Records”.

I’m sure this could easily happen in most other countries as well. The best part is what she has to do to prove she is alive…

Just hearing Kruse’s voice on the phone wasn’t good enough. Instead, the fund official asked for a so-called “life certificate,” obtainable from her municipal office at 4.80 euros ($6).

The certificate stated that Kruse was alive and well and fully able to present her identity papers.

Papers Please!!

So Easy

Planning a huge trip is a pain in the ass. That’s what we have been doing for the last couple of days. We are going to finalize our flight plans in the next few days. Expensive. We are gonna go to America for a few weeks in August. We have to go to Tucson for a special reunion of sorts. Ugh!! Tucson in July/August sounds like a lot of fun, especially if you enjoy standing on the sun. Then we will road-trip it from Tucson to Connecticut and visit some friends and family on the way. By the time it is all over and I’m back in Germany, I’ll probably be flat broke. Oh well.

I’ll borrow from the blogger who shall not be named and give a German Word For Today: Gabelflug – arm and a leg

Might stop for the night here and see what kind of trouble we can get into.

Äy Alter! Willste fette dicke Beats hören?

Die deutsche MCs mit den tighten skillz:

…But then, just as you are about to award the country full marks for hip hop excellence, the vocal comes in. Oh dear, you think. What’s going on? The delivery is pedestrian, the voice weedy, and worst of all, it’s in German.

And therein lies the problem. It may be terribly politically incorrect to say so, but German is simply a bad language to rap in. French, Spanish, Portuguese, even Russian – all perfectly acceptable languages for words of hip hop wisdom. German, sadly, just doesn’t lend itself to that all-important lyrical flow.

I beg to differ. There are a few German hip-hop artists who can, uh, keep it real and representen. Those who can’t, are straight up wack MCs. Yeah, I said it. Na, und? The difference between wack MCs and the true playas is skillz. You either got it or you don’t. In the realm of hip hop (and I am in no way, shape or form a lexicon of German hip hop) there is Deichkind, Massive Töne, Creutzfeld & Jakob and Eko Fresh to name a few.

I’ve talked to a lot of German musicians who prefer to write and sing English lyrics because, according to them, German doesn’t flow off the tongue like English does. Listen to German musicians like Kante, MIA, Niels Frevert, Wir Sind Helden, 2raumwohnung, Besser or Selig and you’ll know that this isn’t necessarily true.

A few times I’ve had to read and correct English lyrics written by Germans and I had to tell the author that what they wrote makes no sense at all in any stretch of the English language. But neither does “I am the Walrus” from the Beatles so it doesn’t matter. Some German artists who can pull it off in English (among many many others) are Masha Qrella, The Notwist and The Beatsteaks.

Oh, by the way. The first rule of hip hop applies to German MCs as well: Never ask a rapper who he is because he’ll tell you within the first few seconds of the song whether you want to know or not.

UPDATE: Hey, I was thinking it would be cool if Germans or other expats could leave comments about who some of their favorite German bands/musicians are. The more obscure the better. The first to say Dieter Bohlen gets banned.