dictionaries

Have you ever seen those dictionaries in the humor section of the book store titled “Woman-English, English-Woman” (or sometimes Man-Woman, Woman-Man)? On the escalator in the train station several days ago I saw a cardboard cutout advertising one of them from the window of the first-floor bookstore. A pudgy, middle-aged cardboard man in a Cosby […]

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ode de parfum

In the dressing room I removed layer after layer of coats and sweatshirts, and the scent of my sweat and my skin filled the tiny compartment. In context, I don’t smell bad. I like the way I smell, my lover likes the way I smell, and the people who I spend most of my time […]

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one more cup of coffee for the road

One cup of coffee. Just one. You don’t need to drink anymore, Nikki. One is more than enough. No matter how often I tell myself this, I still find myself with an empty pot beside me, and weird jittery energy that I don’t want or need. One cup of coffee is just right sitting next […]

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tonight: bird from holland, lisa from darmstadt

Local readers! I’m putting on another concert! It’s going to be great! There’s going to be hot chocolate with amaretto (as well as the usual cheap beer and free kicker) for sale to warm your belly one last time before spring finally rears its soppy disheveled head! Haus Mainusch, Staudingerweg 23a, Mainz, doors at 9 […]

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dilapidated chaos = love

Another picture by Mr. Himmel. This is our kitchen. Somehow, in black and white, I love the chaos even more. And now by request (and because I’m not feeling very chatty this week), the answering of a few reader questions. Would you describe your own personal experience finding these communities and getting a place in […]

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good egg bad egg

“Dumpster diving?” “Oh. No. Oh. I really don’t want to go outside again tonight.” I say nothing, knowing we are both thinking the same thing and hoping that his voice and not mine will chide him out of bed with me tonight. “But I guess if we don’t go we won’t have anything to eat […]

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why i love where i live, part one

Photo courtesy of the esteemed Mr. Himmel. Do not steal it without his permission. Also: abetting the gnomes in their escape from The Cage is strictly forbidden. If you’re new to this blog, I should probably explain. I live on a wagenplatz in Germany, and a wagenplatz is something like a trailer park, a gypsy […]

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winter’s come and gone

The time of the thaw has come. It is the ugliest time of the year, when all the trash emerges from beneath the snow. It is too soon to say that winter is over, but it’s not too soon to start singing my favorite end-of-winter melody.

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people of the crane

I could talk to you of paranoia, of people watching me from the sky, and I would be telling you the truth. And I wonder, as I pee in the bushes beside my wagon and listen to hard-hatted men yelling to each other from the construction site behind our wagenplatz, if those manning the cranes […]

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sneakin': radeberg

Sundays quickly became bike days, days for exploring streets I hadn’t noticed before, discovering playgrounds, empty buildings, useful trash. Dresden is full of beautiful, crumbling secrets. Outside of Dresden, if you manage to pedal out of the valley, are others. On the bike ride to Radeberg, all up hill, all cool forest and empty Sunday […]

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