Monday, June 04, 2007

The Teddy Factory

A somewhat belated 'Hello' from Germany!

What is new here? Well, the whole country is upset about the G8 summit in a city that nobody had ever heard of before. Border security has been enhanced, and Lufthansa had all passengers sniffed at by a huge dog. I can also report that Lufthansa meal sizes have increased again, they still serve liquor for free, and my flight was otherwise a classical chicken-or-pasta event. Besides this: congratulations America! When I was here last time late 2006, newspapers were praising the USA for remembering democracy, now you've succesfully regained global-asshole status (I am currently not in the mood to elaborate on global energy scarcity, for an extended version of my opinion, see Global Warming.)

Sure sure, America is still faster, bigger, better: Germany still doesn't have penny trays (I consider that to be one of the most important advantages of the USA), they still don't know what 'cash back' is, and shops are still closed when I finally find the time to go there.

Something completely different: since all-my-mother's-children have moved out and the cat died, the house gets populated by an ever increasing amount of handmade Teddy bears.

[Figure: Representavive sample of the German population
-- Can you find out which item does not fit in?]


  1. Taking photos with teddy bears is fine, but you must be very careful if you film them. You might get sued.

  2. How could someone not know Helligendamm? I was there somewhere in the early 1980s when we went to swim nach Insel Rügen. The spa is near Rostock.

    Now I see a map - is E55 continuing through the sea? E55 id the European road where German drivers hire the dirty Czech prostitutes. What are they doing to them in the sea?

    I am always amazed how people are ready to determine who is an asshole according to the opinion of jerks and losers. Germany needs another Hitler to be destroyed by America, to remember who brought them virtually everything good in the last 65 years. The excitement about democracy and capitalism in Germany is currently as high as during Weimar Republic.

    Homework: the teddy bears with the US flag T-shirts don't fit in. Otherwise all of the items are the same stuff.

  3. Of course, if YOU were there in the 1980ies, everyone must know it! Does the city history mention the visit of the young Motl?

    Needless to say, the asshole-status is not my opinion. In this regard I am somewhat a back-and-forth jumper amazed about the amount of prejudices on both sides. The US as well as Germany, both could learn a lot from each other but they prefer to either proclaim the other is a looser or to overpraise them (depending on who you ask).

    You could as well say America needs another Hitler, they apparently don't know what to do if nobody needs to be 'saved' or 'freed'. Best,


    PS: if you have the time, you might find this interesting.

  4. Hi Alejandro,

    I can assure you none of my Mum's teddybears is evil. In fact, they tend to loose body parts if you don't treat them really nicely. Though she's a teacher and definitely a 'teddy bear master'... ;-) Best,


  5. hi bee, it's sad to see some physicist's comments here :( ..

    and btw. we need to take issue of global warming seriously:


    and also this is important to see:

    I'm afraid to tell what item does not fit.. of the wevil beer .best


  6. ok, skip that, I was just trying to point to people's attention some of the REAL issues on the planet ;)

  7. Aah, now I know the bears dont get alive, because they weren't sitting in the right order!
    Best Mum

  8. Hi alejandro,
    I read your link about filming bears- and now I 'll get a nightmare because I am a math-teacher!

  9. Hi Bee,

    Good that you are having a nice time in Germany. However, you missed our great canoe trip last Saturday. ;-) I recorded it briefly and took some funny pictures. If you were there, I believe you were able to catch more funny moments of PI fellows.

  10. Aah, now I know the bears dont get alive, because they weren't sitting in the right order!

    Hm... all my fault... Bee had told me to remember exactly from where we had taken the bears, but that was too much for my short-time memory ;-)

    Cheers, stefan

  11. Hi! If you could quickly find some obvious errors in my translation of the interview with Helmut Schmidt on my blog, it would be great to learn. Danke, Lubosch

  12. As far as I know, bears never wear glasses.

  13. Hi Carl: the bear in the upper right corner in the small chair next to my shoulder wears glasses (click on the picture, you'll get a larger resolution). best, B.

  14. Hi Yidun,

    yes, I know! I am really sorry to have missed it :-( Anyway, I am having quite a nice time here in Italy (no longer in Germany). Yesterday I met Amara (who sometimes comments here)... currently sitting in the morning session of the conference *yawn* hope coffee break is near... best, B.

  15. haha, just noticed more 'sting theory'

  16. Be careful, Bee! You might make Stefan a tad-bit jealous seeing you cozy amongst all those gentlemanly bears of yours.;-)

  17. Yeah, Bee unfortunately experienced the Alitalia syndrome, an airline that has one of the worst records in the business. At first, they didn't want to admit that they knew where was her luggage, or even that they transported her luggage. Sherlock Bee Holmes tracked it down. (You should write a short story on that, you know, Bee).

    Tomorrow afternoon we will make an adventure, in Rome, doing something interesting, I expect! :-)

  18. Bee,

    I hope you brought Mum a Vermont teddy bear....

  19. Bee: As you are German, it is forgivable, but I notice that many on blogs use "looser" when they mean "loser". It is almost becoming "standard American usage"---apologies for being a pedant.
    What do you think of Freeman Dyson's take on GW on youtube ?( since you have anonymous going into hysterics almost...;) )

  20. Obviously, the human doesnt fit in.
    Was that a rhetorical question?

  21. Hi Cynthia:

    There's a limit to the amount of hair I tolerate...

    Hi Anonymous Snowboarder from Vermont:

    no... in fact, I didn't even bring Maple syrup :-( Just several pounds Hershey's kisses for my husband (which I then kept for myself).

    Hi Amara:

    looking forward to Rome :-) Tooooooo stupid my bag still isn't here, so I can't take photos.

    Hi Gordon:

    Thanks for pointing out the typo. Unfortunately I can't look at the youTube clip. Well, I can look, but I am sitting in a conference talk, don't have earplugs and have sound off. Best,



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