Friday, June 6, 2014

42 million copies of the daily BILD Zeitung - one for every two Germans

The tsunami of forced happiness and soccer world cup frenzy is here again.

Our best indicator in our time in Germany has proven to be the free special edition of tabloid Bild. The overpriced World Cup merchandise in every store has been on offer for weeks, it is not a good indicator for the start of the events. The merchandise only tells you when the world cup is over because prices will plummet at that point.

Finally here! World Cup fever! screams the headline. 

After a supremely chilly night of 0.5 C (yep, 33 F) up in our hills, isn't it heart warming to find an unwanted copy of BILD in your letter box?

The only heart warming aspect of the rag with its scantily clad young women and not very dressed young men is this:
We look forward to putting it into the recycling bin in the hope it'll end up as recycled TP in the supermarket.

Which is a far less direct process as older Germans we know chose: they simply tore it up into TP sheet size squares and applied it directly as needed.

There are no good estimates of the amount of BILD Zeitung ink in the sediment of German septic tanks, but we are talking many tons if we can believe accounts of old customs. Based on the stunning amount of septic tank ink, arachnid archeologists may one day conclude that every German farm had its own printing press for at least half a century.

Bread and Circuses is alive and well thousands of years after some Roman empire party pooper decried the practice.

One more thing: If you live in a country prone to world cup fever, watch your government very very carefully for the next weeks. Some of the worst legislation ever is routinely passed while nobody watches the government -- we kid you not.

One more one more thing: If German environmental protection officials, in hazmat suits and clutching a mass spec, raid your septic tank based on our estimates of old BILD sedimentary ink, please accept our apologies.

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