Archives for category: Berlin culture
Directly across from Treptower Park in Berlin is the Blaue Apotheke (Pharmacy). By attaching five plastic flowers to the building facade, the owners of this structure have transformed a rather ordinary piece of architecture into something whimsical. What better way to attract customers and improve the urban landscape.

On cold and cloudy days, this building adds a little sunshine to the bleak environment. It certainly brought a smile to my face. Unfortunately, there’s not much whimsy in current architectural design. It seems that many architects take their designs too seriously. What ever happened to the Gaudi’s of the world? 
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Directly across from Treptower Park in Berlin is the Blaue Apotheke (Pharmacy). By attaching five plastic flowers to the building facade, the owners of this structure have transformed a rather ordinary piece of architecture into something whimsical. What better way to attract customers and improve the urban landscape.

On cold and cloudy days, this building adds a little sunshine to the bleak environment. It certainly brought a smile to my face. Unfortunately, there’s not much whimsy in current architectural design. It seems that many architects take their designs too seriously. What ever happened to the Gaudi’s of the world? 

Barbie’s house is now on display in Berlin. Barbie fans can explore the 2900 square foot house, which offers a glimpse into Barbie’s private life. Among other things, the interactive exhibition displays Barbie’s living room, bedroom, and hundreds of her outfits. 

The exhibition is not without controversy. Police will be on hand guarding the house after feminist groups and left-wing activists said they would picket the exhibition, calling it sexist propaganda and the wrong role model for young girls. Although Barbie isn’t my thing, it is a cultural phenomena that many people will find interesting. 

Barbie Dreamhouse Experience, Voltairestraße 2a/Dircksenstraße, Berlin; +49 30 4799 7433; May 16-August 25, 2013; open daily from 10 a.m.-8 p.m; admission €15 for adults, €12 for children under 14.

It was the most expensive animal rescue in Berlin’s history, and it took 40 firefighters and animal relief technicians to rescue Skipper, a white Parson Russell Terrier. Shortly after 6 p.m. last Friday, Skipper broke free from his leash while on an evening walk and got caught in a badger’s burrow. Skipper’s distraught guardian called the Fire Department after her efforts to rescue him were unsuccessful.

The rescuers had to excavate an area of approximately 50 square meters and dig to a depth of 12 feet. Skipper was finally rescued shortly after 1:00 a.m. This unfortunate mishap will cost Skipper’s guardian 10 000 Euro ($13,000).

In the USA, when a child is rescued from an unfortunate situation, the taxpayer, and not the parents, usually foots the bill. But what happens if a pet’s endangered. Who pays the costs then? Are costs assigned differently if it’s an animal that needs help? Both the child and the pet have responsible caregivers, shouldn’t liability be assigned equally? 

It was the most expensive animal rescue in Berlin’s history, and it took 40 firefighters and animal relief technicians to rescue Skipper, a white Parson Russell Terrier. Shortly after 6 p.m. last Friday, Skipper broke free from his leash while on an evening walk and got caught in a badger’s burrow. Skipper’s distraught guardian called the Fire Department after her efforts to rescue him were unsuccessful.

The rescuers had to excavate an area of approximately 50 square meters and dig to a depth of 12 feet. Skipper was finally rescued shortly after 1:00 a.m. This unfortunate mishap will cost Skipper’s guardian 10 000 Euro ($13,000).

In the USA, when a child is rescued from an unfortunate situation, the taxpayer, and not the parents, usually foots the bill. But what happens if a pet’s endangered. Who pays the costs then? Are costs assigned differently if it’s an animal that needs help? Both the child and the pet have responsible caregivers, shouldn’t liability be assigned equally? 

Throughout Berlin, there are green containers called Kleiderbox (clothes boxes). These boxes are depositories for used clothes and shoes that are no longer needed. A person places an unwanted item of clothing in the box, and it will be collected by the city and distributed to various charities in Berlin. It’s a wonderful alternative to filling our landfills with otherwise wearable clothing.  

The other day, I noticed a Kleiderbox with a quote written on the back. I’ve usually seen the quote written as, “The Earth Without Art is Just ‘Eh’,” but this version also gets the point across. 

Throughout Berlin, there are green containers called Kleiderbox (clothes boxes). These boxes are depositories for used clothes and shoes that are no longer needed. A person places an unwanted item of clothing in the box, and it will be collected by the city and distributed to various charities in Berlin. It’s a wonderful alternative to filling our landfills with otherwise wearable clothing.  

The other day, I noticed a Kleiderbox with a quote written on the back. I’ve usually seen the quote written as, “The Earth Without Art is Just ‘Eh’,” but this version also gets the point across. 

Berlin is currently hosting the biggest electronic entertainment event in the world. Known as Campus Party, this week long technology festival brings together some of the best tech talent from Europe and Latin America to discuss the latest in technological innovation. Campus Party is expecting 10,000 programmers, bloggers, inventors, developers, and gamers to attend. Campus Party continues until August 26, and is being held at Tempelhof Airport. I wish I was in Berlin to attend.

There’s a story in today’s Tagesspiegel with the title, “Is Berlin a Service Desert?” (Ist Berlin Eine Service-Wüste?) The answer of course is an unequivocal, yes.

The notion of service at a restaurant, store, government office, or even a bank, is a foreign concept in Berlin. Most places in Germany have excellent service. In fact, Germany has a reputation as being efficient, fast, and courteous. But, as with many things, Berlin is different from the rest of Germany.

So when visiting Berlin, one should expect poor service, it’s the norm. I’ve come to think of Berlin’s poor service as one of those charming cultural differences to be savored like a fine French wine. 

There’s a story in today’s Tagesspiegel with the title, “Is Berlin a Service Desert?” (Ist Berlin Eine Service-Wüste?) The answer of course is an unequivocal, yes.

The notion of service at a restaurant, store, government office, or even a bank, is a foreign concept in Berlin. Most places in Germany have excellent service. In fact, Germany has a reputation as being efficient, fast, and courteous. But, as with many things, Berlin is different from the rest of Germany.

So when visiting Berlin, one should expect poor service, it’s the norm. I’ve come to think of Berlin’s poor service as one of those charming cultural differences to be savored like a fine French wine.