Leave it to the Canadians to throw a Thanksgiving party on December 1st. Leave it to the German man who runs the poultry-and-wild-things shop to be completely unfazed at my request for an 18-person turkey the week after a holiday that is not celebrated in Germany.
Maybe I told you this last year, but it is again relevant: you do not earn a world-wide reputation for efficiency through leaving choices up to the individual. The German approach to standardization applies even to the home cook’s oven. Last year, I requested the largest turkey the butcher had, and he said ‘Oh, you have an oven that is not the standard oven? The standard German oven accomodates an 8-kilo turkey; larger turkeys require a non-standard oven.’ I said ‘Excuse me. 8 kilos, please’ over the raised eyebrows of my fellow patrons and the furious scratching in the notepads of the Observers. This year, I requested an 8-kilo turkey like a good little cog in the machine and, lo, the process was so easy and the line at the butcher moved so quickly and the trains really are always on time.
(Oh, Germany, you know I love you. Not your weather or your accent or your rigidity, but I do love the fact that you provide access to health care, job training, child care, education, and the arts for your entire populace, and although your puns tend to be terrible I appreciate the effort.)
Speaking of bucking the system, guess what we’re doing tomorrow? Why, we’re going to a kid-friendly open house at the anarchist-occupied building accross the street! The open house will feature children’s games, a vegan cooking demonstration, a leatherworking demonstration, and a no-money-allowed swap meet. The anarchists printed lovely little flyers about the event and distributed them to all of the neighbors. The flyers encouraged attendance and the bringing of baked goods. I am going to make some vegan red-beet chocolate cupcakes and also some fancy little walnut fudge bars in specially-purchased disposable gold foil candy cups (see what I did there? I’m getting all consumer capitalist on the anarchist baked goods. God, I slay me.) The open house is from 1:00-4:00 tomorrow afternoon, and I will be arriving, with family in tow and wearing my best black hooded sweatshirt with the pro-choice slogan, promptly at 1:00 because very little is funnier to me than how punctual our local anarchists are: their demonstrations are well advertised, well controlled by the riot police, very well attended, and they start absolutely on time. It is clear already from the open house prep that they have held some serious committee meetings:
Open House Preparation Committee Meeting, November 15, 2012
Members Present: Wolf, Hans, Anna, Olga, Jörg, Hans, Sven, Katja, and that guy with the neck tattoos who refuses to admit that his mother calls him Peter and who is trying to get us to refer to him with only a fist in the air gesture.
10:00 Call to order
10:01 Brainstorm booth ideas for upcoming open house
10:15 Vote on children’s booth, vegan cooking booth, and leatherworking demonstration
10:16 Vegan cook lodges formal complaint about the inclusion of the leatherworking demonstration
10:20 Discussion ensues
10:45 Vote is recounted, all origional booths are re-approved
10:59 Meeting adjourned
Next meeting, November 16, 2012. Agenda to include assignment of location of vegan cookery and leatherworking booths, factoring in wind direction and the use of children’s entertainment booth as neutral territory.