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October 29, 2011

Very provocative title but it’s not a call to action, I promise!

Anyone living in or passing through or visiting Prenzlauer Berg may have noticed recently that Kastanienallee is a bit of a building site at the moment. This is apparently because the Bezirksamt (or whoever’s in charge of such things) wants to make the road wider to allow cars to park on either side. Seems to make sense since find a parking space in Prenzlauer Berg is like trying to find a needle in a great big haystack full of fellow angry motorists. However, for some people this is not a positive thing.

Since I don’t have a car and don’t live in Prenzlauer Berg, never mind on Kastanienallee, I don’t actually care that much about the street’s fate. What has caught my eye, though is the rise in hate towards the ‘yuppies’ and the Swabians (people from Swabia in southwest Germany) in this area. For example, this and this.

We’ve already talked about yuppies in the past but what about the Swabians? Well, apparently there’s tonnes of them here and they’re all hip, cool and stuck up and live in Prenzlauer Berg. Apparently, 34% of the Berlin population are from other parts of Germany but no bugger can say what percentage of this are from the land of the money-mad, head-up-their-arse Schwaben so I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that, based on the size of Germany, probably not that many really. Despite this, the Schwaben have managed to draw the short straw in terms of winning the hearts of the Berliners and have become the focus of their hatred instead.

Why, I don’t know- perhaps a scapegoat is needed and the notoriously hardworking, thrifty Schwaben are it and because they’re German and white, it’s ok to hate them? I wonder who’s next, the lazy, loud, lager-drinking Brits??

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