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16th of April, 2024



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G'scheits - German Blogging


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A Short Cultural Note

In every industry, there are the kickbacks, the skimmings, the tricks of the trade that allow the core products to be competitively priced, and accessible to Joe Consumer. In some cases, it even allows the core products to be given away for free. In the late 90’s, for example, we used to actually sell computers for below cost, knowing that, within six months, we could charge thousands of dollars to check these same computers for Y2K-compliancy. I ran the (mostly ceremonial) test procedures at least a thousand times during the last six months of 1999, and not once did a customer ask me why we didn’t check the things before we rolled them out, sometimes mere days before returning to certify them. I must have gained 40 pounds in 1999.

Another great example of this particular business model is Microsoft’s XBox. Every XBox in the world is sold at a horrifying loss. The hardware costs alone are something like 90% of the price tag, and the other 10% couldn’t even put a dent in the massive R&D, marketing, and licensing costs The Beast poured into this fine piece of machinery. Nevertheless, Microsoft made (and still makes) a killing off this thing. The secret is the game licensing. GatesCo. basically gives away the hardware, so that they can make money off of the games that are sold to run on it. The XBox’s anti-“piracy” technology ensures that only those games which have been blessed with The Key can run on it, and The Key, my friends, costs the pudenda for those who wish to use it.

Which brings us to my fucking haircut. Throug whispered confessions in nervous, back-alley meetings, it came to my attention that there exists here in Germany a reasonably-priced barber shop, hidden within the steamy bowels of a department store. Department stores are, in Germany at least, the Grand Mufti of Commerce, because they are often open until the ungodly hour of 8:00 PM, instead of closing at 4 in the afternoon like every other shop on the continent. People who do not belong to unions, and therefore do not enjoy the 11-hour work week and 45-hour lunches which seem to be commonplace here, might, in such an establishment, actually be able to buy an overpriced pair of Italian shoes after work that will turn into shredded leather foot wrappings during the first snow like something out of a grainy, black and white Operation Barbarossa documentary which will only lead to cannibaliism at some point, God help us all.

So, armed with the forbidden knowledge and secret pass-phrase, I walked casually into said cut-easy at 6 in the afternoon, curious as to what awaited me. I walked confidently to the counter, where the tell-tale scent of Barbicide betrayed the establishment’s true purpose, and announced that I was there for a...haircut! I was promptly greeted by an attractive young nymph, probably fresh out of art-school, in need of funds, in a lowly state, ready for every degradation I could muster from my addled id.

I can’t really recall much about the haircut. It was alright, the barbress turned out to be not that attractive after all, which is gang und gebe, a little pudgy, actually, though she did have magic hands at the hair-washing sink, though the fact that she didn’t ask if I wanted the “special treatment” was not lost on me, and therefore was likely to affect her tip, negatively. The wrong kind of rub was in coming, though. She did a bad job on the head. Now, I know I’ve got a difficult head to cut, and I’m usually very understanding when newbies have difficulty with it. After the damage was done, the nymphette looked askance, and inquired as to whether I would like some gel on my hair. In a moment of weakness, I said, well, maybe just a little dab to hold back the humiliation when I walked out the door. So, she being responsive, and subject to my every whim, she took out a tube of hair gel, squeezed out a miniscule drop of the sticky, sensous fluid, and rubbed it on my battered skull. I looked in the mirror, and, swallowing my distaste, mussed a bit till I looked like something other than a month-old jack-o-lantern. I thanked her, and proceeded to the cash register. I paid my due, and realized she’d tacked €1.50 onto the price for the fucking hair gel!

I realize the people have to earn their money. I realize that the price for the haircut was suspiciously reasonable for these dark post-Deutschmark days, but a fucking €1.50 for a fucking cum-dab of hair gel!!!!!1

At this point, I was confronted with the decision, do I scream, at the top of my lungs, YOU FUCKING BACKSTABBING CUNT I’LL FUCKING DO YOU IN YOU GODDAMN BITCH FOR THAT FUCKING HAIRCUT YOU GONNA FUCKING PAY MOMMY MOMMY, or do I just meekly pay the €13.50, thank the nice lady, and walk out the door like someone actually did me a favor? People who know me will have no trouble believing that, not only did I pay the full tab, I also dropped a Euro into the tip jar. What a twat I am.

At two points in this story, as with so many cases in life, I could have been saved with one simple question: What would the Duke do? First off, John Wayne probably would have declined the hair gel, I’m guessing. Failing that, he most certainly would have shot every fucking customer in the department store amid myriad shoulder-rolls and hat-tips, which, honestly, is exactly what this pussified gay-bar of a country needs a bit more of.

Where’s my fucking big-airn?


Holy Father

May I recommend a new hairdresser!!!


... damn good to have you back posting, Rube... I had heard you was dead...


Reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated. Except Friday morning, of course. Then it might have actually been clinically proveable.

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