You spotted an incredibly strange flyer that you absolutely had to photograph and share on Facebook with your friends. You thought, wouldn’t it be great if an entire website would be dedicated to these postings. Guess what.
Notes of Berlin is exactly that. The incredibly funny, participatory blog is an homage to all the notifications that can be found daily all over Berlin. Stefanie Tendler chatted with its initiator Joab Nist.
S2S: In October 2010 you launched „Notes of Berlin,“ how did the idea for the blog evolve?
Joab Nist/Notes of Berlin: The idea came to life in Berlin. In 2004, I moved from Munich to Berlin, because of the city, not because I was accepted to University or due to a job offer. I was impressed by everything Berlin had to offer, even just riding on the subway. Everything was the polar opposite to Munich and since I always have had a passion for photography, I never left my house without my camera and came to Berlin with the intention to take a lot of pictures. I stayed alert when I walked around the city, stepping into corridors to get some insight, inspecting every place I encountered very intensively.
I am among those who did not notice the Stolpersteine – the stumbling blocks or stones paved into Berlin’s sidewalks, at the entrances to buildings where Jews and other Others (Roma and Sinti, homosexuals, people with disabilities, communists and other dissidents) used to live prior to their expulsion and extermination between 1933-1945. I’ve heard about them, naturally, but ever since I came to Berlin, over a year ago, I simply couldn’t trace the Stolpersteine. And then, one day, my younger son stopped and stared at the pavement, and asked, ‘Mom, what’s that?’ And there they were, a few golden stones, remarkably reticent, the inscription minimal, starting with ‘Here Lived’ followed by name, date of birth, date of expulsion, destination, fate (usually murdered) and date and place of death (if known). ‘Ah!’ I said and stared for a while.
For almost a decade Jule and Anni have been sharing styling tips, gossip and stories about their love lives. Both in their prime (around 30) they are living in Berlin. Anni is married, Jule is single. Anni can write, Jule can take pictures. A dream team on a mission, focused on the lonely hearts of this city that seemed to be in need of a new singles magazine – Im Gegenteil (Au contraire). Their goal is making themselves and others happy!
S2S: How did you come up with your idea for Im Gegenteil?
Jule/Im Gegenteil: We were at a bar in Neukölln on a girl’s night out and we started pondering about how many interesting singles we actually know and how it would be amazing to get them all into one room. We reached a point where we realized that the issue of most of the singles was meeting the right person in Berlin. I personally can also relate to this matter and Anni has tried hooking me up many times already.
The name Toby Charles probably doesn’t mean anything to you. And there’s no reason it should. To this nine-year old soccer player in America’s 1970s Heartland, however, Toby Charles was everything.
Toby Charles, you see, was a Welsh broadcaster who, in addition to his regular announcing duties, once a week hosted a public television show called Soccer Made in Germany.
This Emmy-nominated weekly series, produced by German Educational TV and broadcasted only on American public television, featured hour-long edited highlights of games involving West German association football teams and select international and European cup games from UEFA. Toby Charles was the host from the show’s inception in 1976 until he left in 1983.
My love/hate relationship with the Deutsche Sprache!
Hey. Can I talk to you? Sit down. Fine. Stand.
Look, we’ve had our differences lately – a lot of differences – and I need to tell you…I’ve been seeing other languages. Don’t yell, please. You’re always so harsh. This is hard enough. I don’t know how it happened. How do these things ever happen? I was bored. I was frustrated. I was online and I saw the…Berlitz website. Don’t yell! I set up a meeting.
With…French. Don’t laugh!
The fight for acceptance and tolerance continues!
This June 22nd Christopher Street Day was celebrated for the 35th time in Berlin.
About a million people took part in the parade and the CSD finale, marching on the street for the rights of gays, lesbians, transsexuals, transgender and inter- as well as bisexuals. This year’s main theme of the parade was discrimination.
The CSD is held in memory of the Stonewall Riots that took place on June 28, 1969 at the Stonewall Inn, a bar on Christopher Street, in the Greenwich Village neighborhood of New York City. The Stonewall Riots were a historic series of violent rebellion by the LGBT community, against biased treatment of homosexuals and other sexual minorities by the police.
Music doesn’t lie! If there is something to be changed in this world, then it can only happen through music.
The Street is one of the most exciting stages for musicians – here they can experiment and are allowed to go wild. However, not all musicians are comfortable encountering the immediate and authentic reactions of an accidental audience. There is no hiding from the reaction of passers-by. Yet, the amazing thing is exactly the fact that there are no boundaries. There are no limitations of time and space when it comes to street performances, as it is entirely up to the band to decide how long and where they feel like playing.
Why does this city keep the street lights illuminated the entire night?
Isn’t this a waste of energy and resources?
The night is fairly bright in this city and no one tends to question this, or bother to think about it. The design team of Cheesecake Powerhouse, a young creative studio based in Berlin, dealt with that issue and spontaneously installed a light switch on one of the lamp posts in the district of Kreuzberg. The interdisciplinary crew thought of this idea one evening after designer Chehad Abdallah had bought a light switch at Bauhaus hardware store. Che is originally from the graffiti scene and among other things having to do with art that does not only exist on screen, he has concerned himself with art taking place in urban spaces.
Everyone is allowed to ride you…
Hopping on and off as we please, you don’t seem to mind.
Whether we consider ourselves part of the mass or have decided to part with it, you don’t differentiate. In the wagon of the underground everyone is a commuter – a traveler heading somewhere, from station to station. What changes are the expressions decorating the faces of the passengers. Depending on the time of day or the intensity of the intruding sunlight these sometimes seem grey and tired but also can be lively and content.