Poem 3: Charlottenburg 1986

Do you remember the days when we were friends…

 

when that fertile field felt funny under my feet

with stones that ricocheted razor-sharp

against the pillars of Reichstag and grazed

against my swollen back.

 

New napalmed Nazi signs blazed

and branded onto the timid tender

arms of you, a Catholic girl that shaded and shifted your

arms with pulsing childlike blended skin.

 

Chilling and chastising accounts of open canopies

marred the city’s blooming clouds that were

floating over the crafty graffiti on the wall and

floating by a breeze that blazed over the rumbling S-Bahn.

 

Your hasty heaving screams pierced near my body

blocking my bloodshot bursting eyes

shifted once by the steel-glazed guns and

shifted by broken daisies left dangling and deserted.

 

For now, you and I will still remain under close watch

under their piercing, tranquil stares

praying that the gloom of the city will swallow us

praying that the memories of our mind will vanish

forever.

 

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What We Do: Eat a Currywurst

For my newest Tuesday weekly feature, I thought I’d dip into the past giving ideas and recommendations on anything from food to pop culture to games from here to around the world.  And so for the first post, I take you to Berlin, Germany where a popular little dish is eating a Currywurst.

If there is something that Germany has a lot of, it’s a lot of “wursts” – different types of sausages, including Knockwurst, Bratwurst, Kasewurst, Bockwurst and my personal favorite, the Currywurst.

currywurst

The Currywurst is something I tried for the first time in the early 80s and I became obsessed with it.  I would walk down to a nearby “imbiss”, which is a small type of bar that sold snacks and drinks of all varieties.  They would hand me a small paper tray, in which I would have a sausage cut up in a curried sauce.  It had a zest to it, but it wasn’t really spicy.  It would be my daily snack.  (And usually I would also have French fries coated with mayonnaise on the side).

fries

Since then, I’ve tried to recreate it in my own home and while it’s definitely not the same outcome, the taste is fairly similar.  Honestly, it’s really easy to make.  And cheap.  I use smoked sausage, although I’ve also done it with Bratwurst and Kielbasa, too.  In some stores (such as a Meijer or Kroger), they actually sell a specialized Curry sauce.  Some sell it with other condiments (“Curry Ketchup”), while other stores have an international aisle where they may sell it as an imported “Curry Sauce”.  Either one has worked for me.  I’ve also simply used a regular ketchup bottle, mixed it with some tomato paste and put some curry powder, salt, pepper and some creole seasoning in there as well.

The food is really popular in Berlin.  In fact, they’ve even opened up a Currywurst museum dedicated to the sausage itself.

museum

So in summary, if you don’t make it out to Berlin any time soon, try a flavorful Currywurst yourself.  And if you do make it out there, stop by, have a Currywurst and then don’t forget to visit the museum…to have some more!  It’s what Berliners do!

berlin

THE DREAMER

About 2 years ago, I found myself rummaging through old school papers that included report cards, school pictures, essays I wrote, journals, diaries, newspaper clippings, etc and remember some of the comments my fourth grade teacher made.  Apparently, I looked out the window too much.  Apparently, I was a day dreamer.  Apparently, I had no affinity for any kind of education and if I didn’t improve my conduct I would be held back.

Now I take issue with one thing.  It’s not true that I didn’t care about schooling – I actually loved math and spelling.  I loved things that made me think.  I was usually the first one to turn in the timed multiplication tables and I had an abundance of spelling stickers (which were probably the inspiration for emojis – happy smiley faces!  Stars!  Fireworks!).  For some reason, my teacher thought there was no hope for me.  That wasn’t true at all.

The one thing that was true was that I did dream…a lot!  Even my mother would always laugh at how many different thoughts came into my head.  From wanting to host game shows to stage acting to becoming a police officer to even riding around in a garbage truck, I always seemed to want to have a different dream.

Today, I am no different.  I still dream.  I want to travel the world.  I want to write a book.  I want to write programs for a children’s hospital.  I want to solve a murder case.  I want my kids to look at me as some kind of fantastic superhero.  And that’s why I am here…to share not just my future, but so that others can go along with me as I ride my journey to one (or two…or better yet…multiple) dreams.  And maybe others can be inspired by this journey I am taking.

That’s why I am here…but I should probably introduce myself now, so people understand also who I am.  My name is Mo Anand and I was born in Berlin, Germany.  I lived in Germany for nine years before moving to Michigan.  Michigan has been my home for 30 years now.  I am married to my wife, Rachel and we have four wonderful children, Benjamin, Oliver, Charlie, and Annika.  I am a Christian and I currently work in several different fields:  transportation, health care and education.

As far as my future goes, I have several goals in mind.  Within the year, I want to earn more than the $55,000 I am making now.  I want to learn how to program in Java.  I want to write a TV script pilot.  I want to re-learn German and Spanish.  I want to read a whole slew of Dickens novels.  There’s a lot I want to accomplish.  But that’s me….the dreamer still lives in me.