Myfest, your fest, it’s all the same fest to me. May 1 is German Labor Day (and practically everywhere else, too, I might add) and a big important public holiday and therefore a traditional day for protests (you go and figure it out). It has to do with Chicago or something. But here in Berlin, it’s even more big and important. At least it is this year.

In 1987, 20 years ago, Berlin’s Kreuzberg district witnessed its first violent left-wing scene riots, you know, just-for-fun. And although most of these anarchistic types haven’t aged too gracefully and don’t have the bite they used to have (having dentures and all must be a real bitch), Berlin Police are going to be particularly on their toes during this year’s anniversary celebration nonsense.

And to confuse matters for the cops all the more, the Myfest will be taking place again this year, too. Myfest (My rhymes with Mai which means May, get it?) demonstrators will be trying to defuse potential violence in their potential neighborhood by holding their fourth annual multicultural barbecue and live music smooze fest party for peace and understanding or something. And they’ll beat the crap out of anybody who tries to get in their way, too.

But to really understand what’s going on here, one has to delve into German mysticism and mythology. And who wants to do that? So instead, I’ll just remind you that tonight is Walpurgisnacht (The Night of the Witches) and the real cause for all of this pent-up violence. It has an even longer tradition than May 1, by a long shot, and is the night in which countless German witches hold a freaky celebration on Blocksberg Mountain (Brokeback Mountain came later) in witch (get it?) they do, uh, I dunno, witch karaoke or something. You know, it has something to do with Goethe and ghosts and scary shadows and stuff like that. How the hell do I know what they friggin’ do up there?

But damn. I’m getting goose bumps just thinking about what it could be. And if you want guaranteed goose bumps, perhaps the eeriest thing of all are the lyrics to this old Berlin classic Schlager number, “Kreuzberger Nächte Sind Lang”. Don’t try singing this at home, kids.

Come visit me at Observing Hermann…

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