Euro04: Berlin + Prague

At the Village Voice

Tuesday, March 9th, 11:20PM

Ruth Elkins in Brenna's glasses.

Then we met Ruth again at The Village Voice, a beer/coffee bar about a half-block from Brenna's new apartment. First some forty-year-old (or so) guy tried to hit on the girls in German and, when that clearly wasn't going to happen, decided to ask me a few questions about things. Then the owner of the place, a woman in her forties or fifties, came over and held a conversation in a thick Berlin accent with the girls, both of whom are nearly completely fluent. I understood that I was in a foreign country, but I was still kind of annoyed to have to sit and stare at the walls for so long. So it goes, I suppose.

Brenna went to the restroom and Ruth and I got to discuss the book concept for a few minutes. A big poster of Charles Bukowski hung on one of the walls (sort of breaking the East Village theme in which, as an anti-social Los Angelino, he most definitely does not fit). Ruth didn't know who he was, which surprised me a little at first and then made sense. That sounds like an insult. It's not. There are probably plenty of authors she considers essential reading that I've never heard of. So many people I knew had a brief "Bukowski Period" (including myself) that it threw me off.

Um. So. Yeah.