Saturday, September 16, 2006
Alle Menschen Werden Lunchen
After a miserably wet month of August, the weather gods have come to realise that it’s not yet autumn after all. The last couple of days have been quite nice, if not to say hot. So lunch in the park it is then!
As I’ve explained before, there’s a strict picking order for the park benches. There are many of those, but not all of them are in the shade and some of them look like a flight of B-52’s dropped bird shit on them. But yesterday I discovered there’s another weird thing about the park. You see, it is situated on the border between the European district, where you can find the European Commission, the European Parliament and hundreds of related office buildings. On the other side of the park, where my office is located, there is a district with ordinary people including lots of immigrants from northern Africa.
The members of the European aristocracy are easily recognisable by their suits or business outfits. They buy their lunches in one of the fancy food shops and restaurants in the shadow of the EU Commission building, the Berliamont, where prices are ridiculously high and food is not that good but served by waiters with a lot of attitude imported from all corners of the Union. The Eurocrats tend to keep to their side of the park.
We, the commoners, make our own lunches that we unravel from their plastic wrap or aluminium foil. Or we buy our lunches in one of the cheap diners down the street. At our side of the park, you will mostly find pita bars, fry shops (our equivalent of the fish and chips barracks) and the occasional boulanger. We too keep to our side of the park. We hang on the benches instead of sitting upright. We play cards instead of quickly reading through a dossier. We play with dogs instead of thinking up regulation to standardise the production of dog pooh in the Union.
You can see here in practice how the Eurocrats are drifting away from the ordinary folk. Maybe we should try to write a European constitution right here in this park.