Thursday, October 11, 2007

Hello Muddah, Berlin-Style

Whilst walking Alfie the Pomeranian at 7:30 this morning, my Crackberry vibrated with the promise of a new incoming e-mail.

Digging the addictive device out of my raincoat pocket (hastily thrown atop my shorts and bra-less t-shirt so as not to scandalize Morningside Heights, esp my disgraced neighbor Lee Bollinger), I saw that the new missive was from none other than Big Babe, my firstborn, recently graduated from Columbia U and now based in Berlin.

Two days ago, I bought a mega-cheapo ticket to Berlin (Delta, direct, nonstop, round-trip for $450!!!!!!!) to see my son and the news of my impending arrival awakened that instinctual impulse shared by offspring of all ages: the instant awareness of things lacking in one's life and the composition of a list of such items to be shlepped by one's parents, often internationally.

With Big Babe's permission, I am hereby reproducing his request list:

1. Books from that bag I left in the dining room: Updike collected stories, a few others that can be chosen at random. I forget what's there...possibly Schnitzler and Svevo? Naked Lunch??? I really am at a loss.
2. Gap 3/4 peacoat (hanging in front of house)
3. A couple of scarves (you know 'em)
4. My leather gloves (should be in some coat pocket)
5. A few blazers from my closet. Green corduroy banana republic one; somewhat stiff brown cord one w/big pockets (you know it)...whatever else you feel is classy enough.
7. A couple button-down shirts (same instructions)
6. Some more Henley shirts (in hideous cupboard next to closet)...and another sweater or two (black wool turtle-neck and maybe a zip-up or two)
7. My pleather fender shoes (ersatz converse)
8. a pound of Zabar's coffee (F.I., ground for Melitta)
9. More pairs of socks!!! (alle Farben)
10. A warm cap / hat - like that stupid black thing with the pompom
11. Anything else that you think would improve my quality of life here
12. My portable typewriter - only if it isn't too much of a pain in the ass
13. Hyemin
14. The Complete New Yorker - it's on the shelf in the livingroom. If the whole things too much of a hassel, then take the discs out and put them in the protective vinyl sleeves I have in my room inside that CD / DVD storage box.
15. Before I left, I was looking everywhere for a notebook that says "World Turned Upside Down" on it. It's a thin (50 sheets), beige and classy notebook with non-recycled paper...It should be 1/2 filled up. Maybe it made its way into the piano bench or with elsewhere with sheet music. No need to turn the house upside down to look for it...but if you do see it lying around, please bring it.
16. My opera throw with the Chagall design on it. It's rather light and non-bulky.

OK...I think that's about it. Remember, all these items and quantities are negotiable...and Dependant on what you can physically bring with you. I can even meet you at the airport if you need help!

Luv ya!

So....there you have it. The modern Wish List of an American in Berlin. To learn more about Big Babe, visit his amazing blog at

And stay tuned for word of Middle Babe's Wish List from Towson, Maryland. We're planning to visit her the weekend before I fly to Berlin. She has warned me that her list is extensive and might require many trips to Target.

Donations can be made to Bungalow Babe in the Big City.

Earmark the funds Hello Muddah.

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