Interview with Frithjof
conducted by tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE
(with occasional interjections from Gyoergy Ladanyi)
Berlin - April 13, 2004
[I was introduced to Frithjof as "Monty", as in "Monty Cantsin" - open pop star of neoism, by neoist Gyoergy Ladanyi - who further identified Frithoj as his "spiritual son". As with the interview I conducted with Gyoergy, my only being able to communicate adequately in English put Frithjof at an extreme disadvantage as he tried to find the words in English & put them in a somewhat correct syntax. The result was that this interview was much more halting & incoherent than it would've been if we could've conducted it in Deutsch. Despite this handicap, it was obvious that Frithjof has a lively ability for constructing puns. In the following transcription, I only vaguely approximate what I hear in the German. It is in no way accurate.]
[I probably transcribed this interview not long after I conducted it in 2004. Opening it now, 10 years later, it's garbled in some palces where the computer has replaced the original text with repetitions of "CCCCCCC". The mini-disc recorder that I used to record the interview is long since broken so I can't easily reference the original anymore. Because of this, I leave the "CCCCCCC" in the transcription to show that something's missing. Fortunately, most of it seems to've survived. - August 21, 2014 note]
Part 1: 39:38 long interview
tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE: &.. my 1st question is the name that you want to be identified by.
Frithjof: Yeah, Frithjof.
t,ac: Ok. Just Frithjof?
F: Yeah. What now?
t,ac: Alright. Now you've told me some good stories that I want you to repeat for me but maybe you should just give me some background information abut yourself 1st - whatever you want to talk about.
F: Ok,uh, I grew up in [says something aside in German] Russian occupied territory of Germany. My parents were collaborates.
t,ac: With the Russians.
F: With the Russians. But this is, those are harsh terms. We could have easier terms, softer terms but, but now I love to tell it like this.
F: Uh, they both hoped that this gonna be something very different but they didn't knew Monty Pythons by then, uh..
t,ac: Monty Python did you say?
F: Monty Python, yeah. They didn't know it. But my father was, you know, coming to know very soon, getting frustrated & to [relieve?] frustration my mother had to kick him.
t,ac: Kick him out?
F: Yep. Mother were teacher with Marxism, Leninism, [?], German literature &..
t,ac: Did they originally come from..
t,ac: ..a poor background? Is that why they thought there was hope?
F: Yes, yes, yes. My mother was the last daughter of a billion children family &, uh, more than 10, 13 I think - & a Rohrgebiet
t,ac: Which means?
F: That's a river, Rohr - where lots of wars were fought because of the miners. Mines.
t,ac: Miners, yes. So, lots of struggle for better working conditions & wages & that sort of thing.
F: Yep, yep.
t,ac: Coal mining? What kind of mining?
F: I.. Usually coal mining, yeah. It's dead by now. Dead.
t,ac: He's referring to the ham here now, I'm saying this for the record, because Gyoergy has brought in ham & put it underneath Frithjof's nose.
t,ac: Ok, so, back to your family history: So your mother thought
F: They both thought
t,ac: that conditions would be better in Russian occupied Germany but the Russians ended up being just as totalitarian a& repressive as anyone else.
F: No, she didn't feel like this. She thought it was all great, & by law, &, you know, smooth.
t,ac: She liked the East German conditions.
F: Yes. Yeah, that's what the hand that the dog gets feeded by will not get bite.
Gyoergy Ladanyi: Bitten. Gebissen.
F: Bitten, yeah, yeah. Will not bite.
t,ac: But you felt differently.
F: Not in the beginning because of this problem when the mother feels well the child as well feels well, but, uh, then she, now, according to me, became the real agent, like in "Matrix" &, uh, any, uh, real thought & any real feeling of any of their child, her childs, were immediately interupted as a harm to her, so.. I don't know, she, she, yeah, what to tell, she tried, she's tried her best & was just caught by this big machine that is but [?] I think Bolshevism is just a more simple machine than, than what is founded in the western world through American empire. The 1st thing you have to be free of is personality. & that was the same in East Germany. Anything.. The equalness were thought of like everybody needs to do the same, has to do the same.
t,ac: It's the same way in the United States. It's just disguised in a different way.
F: Yes, but.. yeah by now they've just destroyed ways to escape because if you destroy the place to escape to then you destroy the ways. So there's no material, there's no real place, no material place, space, maybe.
F: I'm not sure about. I'm actually not sure about fighting it anymore. Not that I say that it's great but I say that I'm just not powerful enough.
t,ac: So, so jumping ahead in your personal history a little more, uh, when the Berlin Wall came down you moved to Berlin? Is that correct?
F: For one day, now, the 1st, January 1st of 1989 I moved to East Berlin.
[people enter & some German is spoken]
t,ac: Maybe, maybe we should move to the other room so that we're not disturbing socializing in here.
F: Ok, yeah. [to Gyoergy:] You don't mind if we do this in your room do you?
[we arrive in the other room]
F: Here I am again.
t,ac: So, maybe before we jump ahead to East Berlin, should you tell me more about your experiences in East Germany, uh, before you moved to East Berlin? Any important stories?
F: I was a mother's boy. I had, yeah, just 'til I was 13, I had no reason to doubt anything. I was ok. But then, you know, just usual, start, uh, personality growing & that was constantly blocked & I felt like from very simple situations I just seeing it is not a paradise that she was saying. My questions were always blocked like I was, because of those questions I was the evil. But this is, uh, just a Christian behavior.
t,ac: Your mother was a Christian?
F: Catholic, uh, National Bolshevik, I used to call it.
t,ac: So how old were you when you decided to move to East Berlin?
t,ac: & you came to East Berlin because.. looking for more action or?
F: No, because, actually not, just was, 1st it was an escape. I just, I was a little in that theater & arts, uh, uh, crowd.
t,ac: Was there interesting theater & art stuff going on in East Berlin then?
F: In East Berlin then, yeah, always. Uh, I remember, uh, the group Chernobyl Röt, Tinoba Röt, Tinoba, Tinoba, this rat shade
t,ac: A rat shade?
F: Red shape, shape of red.
t,ac: Oh yeah?
F: Tinoba, I don't know the English expression. &.. I committed myself being a poem that time. Poet. & a poem as well, for sure. & I was, 1985, I was judged for the 1st performance.. 3 month
t,ac: The 1st performance that you gave?
F: MmHm. For 3 months in the [?]mannerdrafthauptstucke & I survived it, I survived it.
t,ac: What would that translate to?
F: Socialistic Humanistic Prison, uh, I don't know. Prison, prison, jail, jail, judgement, I don't know.
t,ac: You were judged? You were on trial for something you had done? I don't understand.
t,ac: On trial for a performance, though.
t,ac: What was the performance?
F: Uh.. Kindof a graffiti - including speaking, speeches, like a Speaker's Corner.
t,ac: Oh, yeah. So you were outside in public writing something & talking to a crowd?
t,ac: What were you talking about?
F: That it seems to me like a red painted Ari Botchi, like a red painted Hitler, like a
t,ac: Ok, just a new camouflage.
F: Yeah, just a new camouflage.
t,ac: & the police came while you were doing this
t,ac: or did someone complain or?
F: No, they came while I am doing this but, uh, 1st they said: "Stop it." I was Six-, 16. We.. I kept spraying & for this, you know, some days like [?], just, just interviewing me. I was surprised from this in little awareness they had 'cause
t,ac: How little they understood what you were doing?
F: How little they of they understood what I was telling them. They interviewed me about 10 hours, 5 men, 5 men - through cross-, also. I kept talking - & they were just going to let me.. & I said: "What? How stupid you are! For sure I did this" &, yeah..
t,ac: They were going to let you go but then you said that & they decided to keep you because of that.
t,ac: So did you have to go to jail for that?
F: Yeah, 3 months.
t,ac: 3 months, yeah. Which was like ajuvenile jail or was it an adult jail?
F: MmHmm. Juvenile. But, uh, there are lots of features about the boot camps. That was kindof a boot camp.
t,ac: Yeah. Yeah, in the U.S. they more or less call them boot camps - the ones for the juveniles.
F: You get booted. They want to get you booted.
t,ac: Yeah. It's military training camp type of thing. There's one outside of where I grew up that's actually has, it's actually called the same last name as my given last name. But, as far as I know, my family has nothing to do with it.
GL: What is your given last?
t,ac: Tolson. T,O,L,S,O,N. So there's a..
F: Private, huh? Is it? No?
F: Some private prisons like private I grew up around
t,ac: I don't know whether this is or not. There are the private prisons in the U.S. There's a whole business based around it, yeah. But back to your story then, so after you got out of jail for doing that I assume your spirit was still strong so you still wanted to do the same things. Or, am I wrong?
F: No, yeah-ah, yes, but I decided to wait & I.. did, took, not classes, but I did a profession, I learned a profession
t,ac: What was your profession?
F: [tries to think of the word in English] Metal-work.. like.. Uh.. Monturer - I don't know what it is..
t,ac: Do you know what it is Gyoergy?
GL: Yeah, it's a sort of locksmith.
F: Locksmith. Yeah, locksmith is schweide, no?
F: Locksmith, Schlosser, yeah, locksmith. [?] After this, I gave the break & my house I, like a club, & met & partied &, & before any problems were arising I stopped that & went to Berlin after.. There was a, I 1st tried to do a legal, like a common way, um, getting a job 'cause they, it was the Bolshevik's plan to make East Berlin, to change it into a nice, modern city. I don't know what they, how this could be.
t,ac: With alotof cultural activities or what?
F: Yeah, there were, there were, like ever there were stages of
t,ac: Like the Volkesbühne?
F: Volkesbühne. This time Volkesbühne wasn't that great or important. It was just some common theater. Of more interest were Deutsches Theatre und some of those little off-theater like Chernobyl & in the beginning of the '80s there were these medieval, they call it medieval spectacular, uh.. where they presented, you know, um, old hand-craft, uh, medieval hand-craft - what they thought was medieval, & medieval music, what they thought was medieval
t,ac: This was a theater that did this?
F: It was kindof a theater, as well, but it was more of a scoial theater, more, you know, like, a [locked?/large?] place with everything, theater, music, hand-crafting.
t,ac: Yeah. So, like in the United States they have Renaissance fairs - something similar to that? Like the Society for Creative Anachronisms.
F: Yeah. Creative Anachronisms, right.
t,ac: So, you were connected to this?
F: Uh, no.
t,ac: It was just something that was happening.
F: I knew some people, I was friends with some people that did this but I about to, rather about to see what's, I didn't, couldn't think of it as a real thing to me, I just wanted to find idea, GDR doesn't exist no more &, you know, this kind of stuff. I didn't know it's that easy! [laughs]
t,ac: [laughs] Ok, so what did you do when you got to East Berlin? Were you working as a locksmith?
F: No. 1st half-year I wasn't working, for sure, I was just looking for a crowd of people to talk to, you know, to find, to see ideas, to hear ideas, to see what, to learn a bit, whatever, & to [savor?/save?] a bit, whatever, didn't know. I wasn't fixed, & this is a strategy, I wasn't fixed & this is the truth, I wasn't fixed in any point except: "I don't want this to be." &, so I felt like, a little like a victory in 1989 & the next 2 years when the wall came down, the Bolsheviks came down, but, then, very soon, too soon to be able to use, to have, to have a good use of the situation I realized, I saw it, that, uh, then I see it changing into something even worse.
t,ac: Why was it even worse?
F: Because so.. Because too many, too many people were not profiting of it. Too many. Just.. for sure, not everybody, but too many were just frustrated - the former political persons, you know, in the.. what is that? - not the highest?
t,ac: The underground?
GL: Have you been profited of it?
F: I? Sure.
t,ac: You've profited off of the change? Yeah. But you thought that not enough people profited from it.
F: Yeah. Yeah.
t,ac: So, at any rate, you developed a way of expressing your dissatisfaction, correct?
F: Yes, but just in personal, you know, interviews, talks, talk a little. I did some readings, I did some this or that, some, um, uh, installations, some, something I did but, uh, the one big thing that I really suffered of that was the, uh, western crap crowd, so-called anarchists & so-called punks & so-called.. & called themselves, you know, this & called thgemselves artists, you know, because: [goes into hoarse 'demonic' parody voice] "I want to be an artist!" - like, another thing, there were "unemployed", like somebody told me: "Ich bin arbeitzer kunstler" - "I'm an unemployed artist." I couldn't imagine what this fuck could be, you know? I just had no, picture of that, you know? But I knew it was part of social, of psychic reality that this is possible to say this, you know? Just, to tell such bullshit.
t,ac: To you it was bullshit because an artist is a person who is always what they are
F: He is, he is an artist, even though he doesn't do art, he is an artist.
t,ac: So, it's not a matter of employment. Yeah, ok, I just wanted to make sure I understood you clearly.
F: He cannot be unemployed because an artist can never be employed.
t,ac: It's like saying: "I'm an unemployed person" or "I'm an unemployed eater."
F: Yeah, yeah, yeah.
t,ac: "An unemployed breather" or something.
F: So.. & then came the drugs - & I'm a very sensitive.. this great experience of a trip was a good job & I just went into changing myself from saying no to also just doing & I thought that it was good doing like this health stuff & I drew more & more into this kindof guru image which I
t,ac: Guru image?
F: Yes. People came up to me
t,ac: Like yourself being a guru?
F: Yeah, yeah. People came up, showing up, Frithjof, yeah, well, well, I knew I, I knew something & I could do something but, by now I think that is.. I'm not sure about.. it's, ah, really, a step forward for them, you know, like, or if it's more of another opium
F: But opium is not that evil - it's not as evil as, you know, this religion was committed by Karl Marx, I rather think, by now, & actually in the '50s it was "Mother's Little Helper"
[a Rolling Stones song about pill popping housewives]
opium is religion to the people, you know? Yeah, mother's little helper - but this wasn't opium it was MDMA
t,ac: Oh, you did alotof ecstasy?
F: No, I did not, ecstasy, I ever hated ecstasy - I didn't know why I love, I didn't know, I just, not frightened but sceptical, this: Why am I so loving? What!? & How?!
t,ac: Yeah. So what did you prefer? LSD or?
F: I preferred just simple hash. LSD I took, I had about, I took, I had about.. not very often. One very spectacular & 2 I just did just thought, you know, it was nothing.. I hate, by now I hate cocaine, I don't hate it but I have too much respect for what it does to some friends of mine, some get really powerful beyond their natural powers. Some get, like, bones, & skins
t,ac: Bone problems?
F: bones & skins - No, no, just like skeletons
t,ac: Oh, yeah, very thin.
F: Looking like skeletons - it's not about thinness
F: Dead. Dead bodies. & I.. So I had my suspicions.. suspicions &..
F: Yeah, criticisms. Criticism is a state of critic, huh?
F: But no.. it's not this.
t,ac: Being critical, yeah. Ok, not that.
F: Skepticism, I had my skeptist, I was skeptical. ..&.. yeah, then I did.. for about 3 or 4 years I was into this esoteric things - all that needs.. Alan Watts reading, which I love, still, somehow love & some kept there but there's still some more I'm not sure what to do so I right now in the mood of having a rest in the country for a little escape & I tell everybody: "I'm escaping, I'm weak, I'm escaping, I'm weak" but I know, I hope there's more - but hope is always a matter of facts as well - pure hope is like never heard that there was a Dante
t,ac: So, I was hoping that you would talk about things like this thing that you're on probation for because I think it's very interesting - the whole "Wie Geil"
F: Yeah, "Wie Geil". I used to play with these words, I used to play with social words. There was a time I just, uh.. wasn't speaking, I didn't speak, I just, uh, RrrRgrrhuhhuhh - like if you know this movie, "[Tamrock?]? , you know, French movie, "[Thamrock?]", "[Shamrock?]"
t,ac: No, I don't recognize the title, yeah.
F: Ok, just not talking but getting sounds, like articulated sounds like Rah-oo-eah & it was, you know, an experiment. It was an experiment, you know, a communication experiment.. &.. but, since lots of people, uh, in this so-, in this so-called, em, uh, alternative, uh, area, where I used to stay, uh
t,ac: What area was that?
F: It's the Prinzlauerberg. In the muth, I was a muth, an azimuth, but it was a [mini?]muth for awhile - realized that it's good to have money, & it's good to earn money, it's good to have others bring money. There were less changes, changes to, um, to make it show, to show because when you make money you only can make, you can only make money off the needs of others & until somebody realizes others know what you want & needs to make alot know what you want - & therefore, then therefore, then started the time I was even attacked by self-calling alternatives as, whatever, fascist, dog fascist - whatever that is
t,ac: You were called a dog fascist?
F: Yeah, for example, or anything
t,ac: Or a fascist dog I think is probably..? I understand.
F: No, a fascist to dogs - so the dogs were my Jews, you know?
t,ac: Oh, I see. Ok, I misunderstood, yeah, ok.
F: In particular, I said, to most people that, most people that I've seen, having dogs, were just having dogs because they couldn't afford or didn't dare psychiatrists
t,ac: [laughs] Ok, so when you say you were attacked are you saying that you were phsyically attacked or that you were
t,ac: Yeah, but people were just insulting you mainly or whatever.
CF: Yeah, yeah, ok, insulting, but if you just sit there, I don't know how to call it, meditating, meditating, meditating is what you do for your own.. but I was just going to have a social contemplation [?] & there is something that make people [hacking it?], no, not further, not further see what is. Ye shall not see what is. Ye shall not see what is & see, there's this, there's this, uh, pedagogue speech in German, uh, uh Wehr nicht Herman wehr nichts fuelhen - Who doesn't ant to hear, has to feel. But this is clearer, in English it's clearer, sure, if I don't want to hear what God says, I have to feel what God is. Whatever that is. But it is always used for, you know, [makes threatening voice:] "You fuckin' do what I TELL you!" Yeah, & others, you know. [says something in German?] & so on. But I never put these speeches, so I turned off, turned from, from, uh, thinking of myself as a poet, as I often did, uh, & turning myself into a, uh, propagandist. Wie heist ist polimiscist?
t,ac: Polemicist, yeah. So you would.. Would you read texts in public? Or just improvise?
t,ac: You were trying to provide the missing link, the missing point? I'm not sure I followed you there.
F: Yeah, yeah.
t,ac: You were trying to talk about the things that weren't talked about?
F: Yeah. Now, yeah, this is part of it but, um, I think one of the greatest performances wasn't me, the problem is the authorship of such a thing. There is no authorship & normal conditions the one does this get nailed. This is, you know, the Jesus problem - because he was able to do this, maybe, I don't know, but I wanted to be able to learn how to do this & I, very soft, uh, uh, versions of it where there was a girlfriend having a very beautiful black shepherd, Austrian Shepherd, beautiful black & soft & he was very sensitive, he was , it wasn't like HeahUh? It was singing - & not singing man-make-dog-sing-that-song, it was singing like a dog sings but to humans - & one could push him to that & he also loved the sounds of several instruments - like trumpets & stuff - & went to a pub, an opening, there was an art opening &, uh, of Eastern crowd, Eastern former well-known & successful artists, which are not too bad actually but there was dancing, there was, there was this musicians - & I was a great, you know like, fuga, when, when the, when they are going to stop, they're going to mellow down, I made the dog communicate with the guys. In public I used to dance with this dog, I, like dancing is, uh, you know, giving the dog to the dog, like this kind, not like the horse whistler or whatever, you know, but just
F: Yeah, but, yeaah.. not like this, not letting him do what he
t,ac: So, but what I was trying to understand about the dog situation is, is that, so you would get the dog to sing, along with the musicians at this party, & is that the sort of thing that people accused you of being a dog fascist for? Or?
F: No., no, that.. this, especially, was a very mellow, soft, like a peaceful success because the dog's very beautiful, uh, it's black & the room was white & I wasn't dancing & the music.. they.. Wo ist ist?
CF: Yeah, the musician have not been too stupid. He just showed up & played his trumpet to the dog & the dog was him doing 4 words
t,ac: Yeah, ok.. So, so continue..
F: 'Bout what?
t,ac: Uh, well tell me more about, uh, ok, to get back to the, uh, uh, "Wie Giel" - that's spelled W, i, e; G, i, e, l?
t,ac: & what does that translate into in English again?
F: Uhh.. How great.
t,ac: How great.
F: "Geil" is actually not an English term, an English word, but, by now it is used as "great", great, yeah
t,ac: So, you were at a performance, a theater performance &
F: A public place.
t,ac: you held out both arms
F: both arms
t,ac: in front of you in what I would call a zombie-type fashion
F: Yeah, yeah, actually, good, great, yeah!
t,ac: but which could be seen as a take-off on the "Sieg Heil" salute
t,ac: except you were doing it with both arms
t,ac: & you were shouting it out at this performance, uh, what was the performance?
F: Uh, just common theater, common.. They thought of themselves as avant gardes because they, instead of changing, changing the, the, the Keiselbuhne - they have one place in the theater that is changing but they don't change this place, they themselves change from place to place so, so different places on the, on the
t,ac: The performers were moving around in the theater?
F: Yeah, moving around on the square, different places.
t,ac: Oh, instead of doing set changes or whatever, ok. So you were doing this, saying this "Wie Geil" knowing that people would misunderstand you
t,ac: if they weren't paying attention
t,ac: & thinking that you were saying "Sieg Heil".
t,ac: So they would think you were, you were being ironic to a certain extent because you were saying "How great" but you didn't necessarily think it was that great, correct? You were being somewhat sarcastic
t,ac: to say "Wie Geil"
t,ac: Sort of fake feeding of the egos of the performers, correct?
F: Yeah. That's correct.
t,ac: But at the same time you knew that people would think that you were making some sort of neo-nazi attack on them or something, right?
t,ac: But you were probably hoping that someone would understand that that wasn't what you were doing. That you were actually being sarcastic & more complex in your language use. Is that..?
F: Yeah, yeah, hoping, hoping, hoping - this is the last piece of hope, sometimes, I don't get punished with this, but, I actually don't have, don't have this hope. I know they had to do, they had to misunderstand it, they had to take it as this, as they took it. They had to because of the play, not just this theater play - any social game going on - any social game: "I am the actor, you are not, you are the audience, I am the actor, I am the author, you are the actor. You are the one who keeps us from, that saves us from" those like, you know, I was, provocation, "Yeah, you have to do this, you have to do this, you have to" makes people turn into what they, turn into their possession, turn, yeah, this is for sure, you know, this is
t,ac: Yeah, so you were partially doing it just as an audience participation type thing which you knew was not approved of because the roles were fixed.
t,ac: That's what you're saying, right? Ok, I mean because, I've been very.. I've done alotof audience participation type things where I've also gotten into trouble for it or whatever - like one time there was a show & the audience was sitting on, uh, uh, uh, like a stadium seats, you know, uh - Now I can't think of the English word!
t,ac: Bleachers! Bleachers, ok! & a friend of mine & I got underneath the bleachers & when it was question & answer time we started shouting out questions from either side underneath the bleachers but no-one knew where we were because we weren't sitting in our supposed place where we were supposed to be & then, even though we were actually liking the performance & we were doing this as a way of showing our appreciation for it by being more imaginative, the people who, uh, ran the place were furious because they felt like we were stepping out of our role - in other words, the audience had to be on the bleachers - that was the only place where you could be, you couldn't be under the bleachers. So, after that, we were basically banned from being able to do anything in connection with this space. Uh.. But it was so stupid because we were being so friendly, we weren't trying to hurt anyone, we were just trying to a more imaginative, less dull audience.
t,ac: But they couldn't accept that - they just wanted us to be stupid.
F: Yeah, for sure.
t,ac: So, at any rate, you got arrested for this, the police came & you were arrested & charged you with maybe some sort of neo-nazi provocation, correct?
F: &, not defend, not defend against power, you know? [says something in German] Like always. Defense on, not, I don't think they call it defense, but..
F: Attack, attack on cops.
t,ac: Oh, oh yeah, ok. A very common.. "Resisting arrest", for example.
F: Yeah, resisting, yeah, resisting arrest, attacking the Volkspolizisystem
t,ac: Did you hit the police? Did they hit you?
F: I don't, I don't know, I, you know, I don't think I am so stupid, you know - there were, they're really not armed but they have this, you know, full..
t,ac: armor, yeah
F: full armor - I'm not a great kung foo fighter
t,ac: Yeah, no, I understand. In the United States you almost always get charged with resisting arrest - even if you're incredibly passive because many of the time they don't have any other charge - so they have to make it seem like you did something & then when you go to court you have to fight the resisting arrest charge which is a complete fake so that they can then press something else on you & get away with it.
F: Yeah, just to charge you when they don't feel that there is anything to charge. This is, yeah, you got it, yeah, ok.
t,ac: Yeah, well, yeah, I'm very familiar with that. So, uh, & then they put you on 3 years probabtion. When you were on trial did you explain what it was that you were saying?
t,ac: You just didn't even bother.
F: Yeah, uh, no - I did explain, look, about a thousand times, it wasn't "Sieg Heil" it was "Wie Geil"
t,ac: & they didn't believe you?
F: No, they just.. you know, said: "No", no - for there was a literature, we have this Dorneschaum, translator
GL: translating guy of high class culture, of high culture - paid to them as a witness
F: Klaus Lops
t,ac: He was a witness against you?
GL: & he was very sharp, & very intelligent - & extremely upper, you know
GL: educated, yeah
t,ac: A Bildensburger? Is that correct?
F: Yeah, East German bildensburger - which is a contradiction
GL: A Prinzlauerberger
F: A Prinzlauerberger as well - which is what you call a left wing area
t,ac: So, ok, he said that you did say "Sieg Heil"?
t,ac: [laughs] It's so stupid. Uh, ok, so, so..
F: When I say, look, but this is what I always will do but this is very short - fft fft - there is a Marxist pub where, where this is, I know of it, I think of it as a Marxist pub, uh, uh, where a friend of mine was, uh, uh, bartender. I used to go like very glooming, very, you know, wrapping my arms around "Hatzlieger sieg heil mein Freult"
t,ac: What does that mean? It's another pun.
F: Warm hardly, hardly?
F: heartedly, [said tenderly:] "sieg heil, I love you, sieg heil, I love you" - because I don't think the word "sieg heil" doesn't mean anything evil. Great, great for you, stay, stay - it means, you know, get what you need
t,ac: What does "sieg heil".. Is that what "seig heil" means? & can you translate that for me?
F: Yeah. Get what you want. No, not get what you want, get what you need & be like healthy. Health, hale is like gorgeous thing to get - this is, you know, hale, heil is: I'm with myself.
GL: It's just health.
t,ac: So "sieg heil" means "get health"?
F: Yeah, no, receive what you need to stay healthy.
GL: Uh, anyway, no it means "only victory", "only victory heals you" - this is exactly, in U.S. terms, "second to none" sir. "Second to none" this is "sieg heil".
t,ac: So, "we're number one" type of thing.
GL: Yeah - yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.
t,ac: So, ok, do, the pub story, alright. Tell me.. So, it seems to me that what you do is you play with all of these, uh, loaded German
t,ac: phrases & use them as kindof, uh, "chain-pullers" - as we'd say in the United States. Things to pull other people's chains because you know that they have the Pavlovian Dog reaction to them - like you know that you can make someone salivate in response to something because they're not detaching themselves enough from it to understand the way that you're deliberately twisting these things, these chain-pullers. Does that make sense?
F: It makes, it does, yeah.
t,ac: So, do you think that that's one of the central ideas that you have pursued or is it just one of many, many ideas?
F: This is the 1st tool, that was the 1st tool for me, but, it's actually one tool of, among many others &, yeah, but the 1st, for sure, yeah.
t,ac: Yeah. Um, so what are some of the other ideas that you've explored. You seem to do alot with language but, uh, so maybe you can talk to me about other language ideas that you have? Or, whatever, anything that you can think of that I don't know you well enough to ask about.
GL: Excuse me. Just to brief you really quickly. Frithjof is the son of an East German writer, who published - &, so, this figure is not unimportant to him. The figure of the father, as in most of the cases is not unimportant. So, the father was writing a funny farce on East German system which could be understood as funny, you know, very tENTATIVE way - &, uh, so when Frithjof moved from Dessau to Berlin he was eagerly writing - like this, uh, like Jandl this abstract poetry
t,ac: Ernst Jandl?
GL: Ernst Jandl, yes, concreta, this concrete poesie stuff as well as real harsh social poetry stuff - like: "I'm hungry, I want food, I am hungry, I need to eat, I need to eat, I'm hungry, but I'm vomiting." This kind of poetry, so, it was a free quoting him now - very, very free - so, this idea of social with, full of avant-gardist elements - the one embankment just working with sounds & the other embankment is being very political, very social, very anarchistic, very, very something; very authentic - &, &, the problem is, he's even less organized than me, so, you know, like, keeping leaflets, these are huge problems, fate is against him as well [fades out]
t,ac: Have you been published at all? In print?
F: No.. Yeah, a little, very little.
t,ac: More the concrete poetry type stuff or more the?
F: The last thing was where we have been at the pub
t,ac: The Kaffee Burger?
F: The Kaffee Burger there is another place called Weiland, Walden, yeah, Weilden
t,ac: Walden? Walden after Thoreau's "Walden" or something else?
F: I'm not sure.
t,ac: Yeah, ok, so probably named after Thoreau's Walden Pond.
F: Yeah, & I did like a singing: "Blah."
t,ac: Blah, blah, blah.
F: [singing a scale:] Blab blah blah blah blah blah blah. This is published, this is published, but
t,ac: Published as a recording?
F: Yeah, published as a recording.
t,ac: Yeah. On what? A CD compilation?
F: On a CD: "The Last of Sklaven Markt"
t,ac: I've heard of them.
F: Slave market.
t,ac: Yeah, yeah - Florian told me about them.
F: Yeah, this is also run by, uh, Dar Pattenfus, which was, which is, I think, still, uh, [?] concrete poets, uh, & there was another connection with a philosopher, uh [laughs], my friend George used to call the "barefeet philosopher"
t,ac: "Bare feet philosopher"?
F: Bare foot, bare foot philisopher whose main axiom is water, water is the main axiom of human life - as, uh, not, yeah, materialistic but also the spirit - carrying the spirit, nothing, the water will not forget, water has anything in it, any water has anything in it, like this, & he has brought me to this Sklaven Markt & he's also telling me in a very misunderstandable way about, uh, uh, uh, uh, stupidity of telling of calling fascism an evil inhuman thing - for me, forever the 1st question was: "Who else in humans did this?" Who, if not humans? & I also think mythologies, mythologic way, that was the 1st scream of mother to get back into power.
t,ac: Fascism? Or?
F: Actually Bolshevism was the 1st because it was, uh
F: was before, but, uh, uh, this is the problem - it was too intellectual, this is Marxism, it's too, too intellectual for those people because, you know, you don't have enough time to study when you work 16 hours a day - it's just, you know
t,ac: So, why do you say the mother get back into power, though? What's.. Rather than the father or
F: The father's the Christian religion in this case, the Jewish-Christian
t,ac: So the father is already in power, so Bolshevism
F: still, still - as we think, as he thinks, & I think - it cannot last very long because, uh, for.. everything is available for anybody, most anybody, in different ways, um, um, each person has now the chance & this bad luck to be, uh, like an.. Zu rucker broten liken est - What is this?
GL: Been thrown back
F: Uh, yeah, but this is a philosohpical term, it's just "on your own" - there's just pure, pure loneliness - & this makes like a breathe [inhales dramatically] you're lonely, you're with them, you're lonely, you're with them, you're lonely, you're with them - now I think, uh, I can't - in some, in some.. I cannot see mankind as split, split in many ones, um, unit - I think it's a unit but it's, uh, a growing unit - like it needs.. it's an idea that plays with itself - & this Matrix movie shows a little bit but it shows it like, like a war - it shows it like a, still shows it like this Jewish self-hate. We created, we hated. We.. & this is not acceptable, we.. I don't know..
t,ac: Too simple?
F: It is not too simple, it is just too one & one, it is just.. & this, uh, uh
t,ac: Too polarized?
F: Yeah, but, it is actually polarized because there is, maybe there is, at 1st, the sun, not the father & the son, the sun & the earth - & the one is the light & the other is the ground, uh, but in Christian terms, I think God would get very soon bored with his own love when there is no shade to reflect &.. & so I think the pureness.. but this is, it's part, it's.. if you read it, if you read bible like, you know, from [fluend?] point but not, then you see it there, it is there, but this is what the Buddhists, this is one common Buddhist speech, um: "Buddhists can see the world, the whole world in one seed of bees"
GL: Of what? Sorry.
GL: Oh, I see, of bean.
F: pea, yeah, yeah but we're not Buddhists, we're parts of one, in this point of view, blacks are black because it is better to be black because when you are white you get sunburned
[we all laugh]
This is not very clever to wear like an Eskimo, a big animal pelt, coat, in a sauna - that's just silly, this is just, you know,
t,ac: "Hebephrenia" would be the one term that is used - meaning innappropriate reaction to a situation like
F: Yeah, accomodation, acclimatization - but this is a long term, acclimatization, it's a long time, time, different, you know - this is what I came to that anything is okay but, you know, there's just different stages of understanding the same words, different levels - but those actually, are actually not different levels it's just different interesting, different to human, to one human, to human nature, interesting problems - for sure you can cut a tree, but if you use the symbol of cutting a tree for treating man, you just kill them, you know, I, you know, this is.. simple.. yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah
t,ac: So, can you explain a little more about what you mean by what you just said, uh.. again, you seem to be talking about, uh, inappropriate displacement of, of, uh, of human reaction, or whatever. When you say you can cut a tree but if you use a symbol for cutting a tree to cut a human you just kill them
t,ac: you mean.. uh, that what is appropriate for one type of living being is not appropriate for another type of living being?
F: For another problem of the same type of living being. I don't.. as my friend Gyoergy used to say: "We are all animals" & I say: "I do agree" because that don't know how to live their animal anymore - like they don't dance ecstatically, don't, don't don't run because they are in fear of getting caught by the police because somebody that runs is suspective & these things that make them [goes into special under-the-breath type character:] block, fuckin' self, you know?
F: & if the animal does not live no more it says: "Ok, if I can't live no more, why shall you?" & I think this is the problem by now with Iraq but it's very clever done - who knows if it's not all but done by the Central Intelligence Agentur, you know, but, uh.. If I was in the G.D.R. & it would've, it would've been done that way.. they would've done, ok, Bolshevism, over - we go there & fight the Bolshevist powers, like army & stuff - I wouldn't, I wouldn't be, I know I would've not been in the army, in the East German army - I'm not silly enough, I'm not, you know, what's easier? To hit somebody when he is, you know, you hit, just one gun, one bullet, when a stuffed crowd kills 10 - to hit running person is much harder & I would, you know, I would get, I would've got, you know, not angry, yeah, I can somehow understand this, like, private terrorism, they, which I think lots of this terrorist attacks of, uh, in Iraq are now, uh, I think I would do this, I'd do this - this is not my fault you know, that's why I'm not doing this, it is not my.. it is part of my problem in thinking but it's not my physical problem, it's not here.
F: Yeah, I'm not there, I'm not going through so much: "You-Have-To-Do-It-Like-I-Think-You-Shall-Do-It" even though sometimes from beyond you see just more - like as a visitor you see more like a chess game, chess game's going on you see more
t,ac: You have an overview.
F: You have an overview, you have, but it's not you, your place & so why does it care? Why does it care? It's not just for humanistic, uh, uh, uh reasons. I believe not because if they think they are doing this, we could talk, but I don't think they think this, I, I just think they.. I mean, I don't know, I haven't studied electrici-, you know, this stuff, but, how can it comes that that powerful country was in knowledge of an atomic bomb is not able to give electricity to anybody for free with, you know, in a country that has sun, sun
t,ac: Well, you know that, uh, Tesla, do you know who Nicolo Tesla is?
F: I know Tesla, yeah.
t,ac: Ok, well you know that Nicolo Tesla proposed
F: [sings something simultaneously while tENT speaks that sounds like:] I got me Niagara Falls
t,ac: he proposed a.. Well, yeah, that was probably the place where the 1st, uh, AC generators were or whatever but, although I don't remember but, he proposed a free way of distributing electricity & the, the very rich man who was funding his research, uh, then cut off the research saying: "Well, I can't make a profit off of this so I, of course, don't want it to be developed."
F: Yeah, yeah. Yeah, for sure, for sure. I have, it seems to me, heard of an interview with one of those guys, water, not water power, uh, Wasserschtoft?
F: Hydrogen, you know, hydrogen energy - & he said: "Ok, we research for, but we research how the companies that by now are oil can use this with their structure." He just did it like this & this is also a problem because I have seen it for 2 days ago, The Matrix, there was: "How can the machine do, create anything else than a machine?"
t,ac: It's a self-perpetuating system.
t,ac: So, wait "hydrogene" - do you mean "hydrogen"? I'm not sure.
GL: Uh, this chemical element of "H".
t,ac: Right, hydrogen, ok, is what you would say in English. That's being researched as an alternative fuel? Is that what you're saying?
F: Power, yeah, yeah. & this is a problem which I have seen with, there's a high, hemp, spectacular hemp culture, hemp, in the beginning of the '90s here - this had, yeah, "Hemp will solve the problems, lots of our problems" & I said: "Look, when, uh, it's not forbidden" you know what I think it's not forbidden because it does do harm, it is forbidden because, by now, the powers cannot do harm with it.
t,ac: Well, the, the original story behind its prohibition in the United States, if I remember correctly & I'm sure I don't have
F: Hemp for Victory!
t,ac: It was because of, I don't know, someplace like Dow Chemical Corporation saw it as a threat to their industry so they got it banned so that they wouldn't have competition
t,ac: claiming that the marijuana was this deadly menace
F: Always just this one point that those in power sees just this one point: they couldn't get in power by seeing everything because this kind of power always means, uh, make others do what they, what you want
F: & especi-, more simple way, a more simple way is the 1st thing make him not know what they want & this is already done, this [laughs] is harmfully done, nobody, very few people know what they want & lots of them end up in mental hospitals.
t,ac: Yeah, confused.
t,ac: So, do you have any concluding statement you want to make?
F: Uh.. [laughs shortly]
t,ac: It doesn't have to be simple. & it doesn't really have to be conclusive either. I just mean anything you want to say before I stop doing the recording.
F: Yeah. I give myself some more situations to reclaim, uh, a stage of awareness that allows me to say: "Ok, by now, I don't need to do what I maximum need or want in maximum" &, also, be able to say, just: "Do what thou whilst" - but, yeah, but, "Do what thou whilst under love" but, love, you know, but, love, ok, we're taught, we're taught to be good, uh, for [says something in German], in German, Ich bin guten und so wiese guten und teufel cum loss. We're taught
GL: It's very simple, "We are educated to be good for whatever price."
t,ac: "Teufel" was in there somewhere - which is "devil".
F: Yeah, but this is a German
GL: Yeah, but this is German, this is price, this is, yeah, uh, the price of the devil is running out. This is the German idea.
t,ac: So it means something like: "You're taught to be good but you do anything bad in order to be good"? Or? I'm not quite sure I understand.
GL: No, it means: "You have to be good, you must be", in German, "You must be good, heart, strong, I have to bend you." This is such a simple-minded idea.
t,ac: Oh, like you have to be made to be good.
GL: Yeah, Graham Greene said: "With the best of intentions" as like, uh, this Christian medieval idea of the holy, um, this, this, inquisition.
GL: Killing bodies to save souls.
F: To cave souls, that's the idea, yeah.
t,ac: Cave souls! [laughs] Ok, do you mind if we end on that pun, because I think that's a good one.
F: Yeah, yeah.
GL: Very good point.
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