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Day Eight: Köln

Posted on Saturday, February 2nd, 2008

Dave!Oh my aching head.

Today I met up with my friends from Essen, who came down to visit with me and check out the Kölner Karneval (Cologne Carnival) festivities. Unfortunately, I am leaving tomorrow and won't get to see the big carnival climax with Rosenmontagzügen (Rose-Monday Parade), but there was still plenty going on.

After days of rain and overcast gloom, the party gods decided to smile upon Köln with blue skies, which was nice...

Cologne Cathedral

In preparation for the ensuing craziness of the carnival, businesses are boarding up their storefronts, which is not so nice...

Boarding-Up The Store

When I met my friends at the train station at 11:00am, their first order of business was getting a beer. Fortunately this was not a problem, because there are beer stands every ten feet. Stores that you wouldn't normally associate with selling beer have signs plastered all over their windows advertising it. I didn't check, but would not be surprised to find the LEGO store selling beer. Of course, since this is Köln, the drink of choice is Kölsch, which is a beer unique to the region (and which can only legally be named "Kölsch" if it's brewed here)...


This is where the trouble started, and it was not because I was attacked by a group of transgender Viking warriors...

Transgender Viking Brigade

I made it very clear to my friends that I would not be getting drunk because I absolutely did not want to take an international flight with a hangover in the morning. My good "friend" Denis told me that I would not get drunk if I were to eat something with every beer I drank, then handed me a Kölsch. "This is good German beer! You will be fine!" he says.

And it was a good theory... at first.

I had Kölsch & a Spritzringe donut. Kölsch & a slice of corn pizza (don't ask). Kölsch & an ice cream cone. Kölsche & potatoes with mayo... WHICH, by the way, is about the most awesome food invention since chocolate pudding...

Mayo Potatoes
Yes, that's my room number written on my hand in case I forget!

But once you drink five Kölscheses, it doesn't matter how much food you've eaten... you're probably going to get drunk. After you've had six, it's guaranteed. Which is why I had seven. And so here I am, drunk at only 8:00pm, praying that I can sleep this off and not be miserable on the flight tomorrow...

Dave Scarf

Dave Scarf

You know I must be drunk, because I'm wearing a clown scarf. Except it's not really a clown scarf but instead the official scarf of the Kölner Karneval which Emma assures me looks totally hot. Though I don't think anybody noticed my new-found hotness, because the crowds were insanely huge...

Köln Street Party

Anyway, Denis tells me that I wouldn't be having this drunkenness problem if I were to stop with my vegetarian nonsense and would have eaten something from the Giant Flaming Wheel of Meat, because that's what he did and he's totally not drunk...

Giant Flaming Wheel of Meat

The very idea of it makes me want to puke, which is probably just what I need right now. And I never thought I'd be saying that about a Giant Flaming Wheel of Meat.

Thus ends my final day in Europe... and what a way to go. It's not every day you see a man in a purple mini skirt and pink bunny ears puking into a trash can while a woman dressed like a cat blows a big plastic horn at his head. Of course, I've never been to Mr. Fab's house, so I could be wrong about that.

Thanks to everybody for tagging along on my trip. Tomorrow we return to our regularly-scheduled blogging...

Categories: Food 2008, Travel 2008Click To It: Permalink


  1. Penelope says:

    Wow this took me back to my childhood when we lived in Germany. Karneval time was so exciting, for kids; it meant bagging your own bodyweight in sweeties. Also chips and mayo…a tradition I have stuck to since we moved back to UK 25 years ago…you just can’t beat that!

  2. Hilly says:

    Haha, you look cute! That clown scarf does totally make you look drunk (forget about the way your eyes look).

    I’m not sure I could take reading your blog anymore if you weren’t coming home. Your food pictures make me want to lick the screen and then recreate whatever it is your photographing!

  3. adena says:

    HaHA! I was going to say, you MUST be drunk if you’re wearing a clown…then I scrolled down, and you said it.

    I have a feeling once you’re sober, you will be filled with an overwhleming sense of horror.

    And, um…I love mayo as much as the next gal…but…FRIES with mayo? That’s just…not right.

  4. Suzy says:

    1. That scarf is totally hot and if I had known there would be scarves like that over there I would have given you undervalued dollars to buy me one.

    2. You do look hot wearing that scarf. I’m not drunk.

    3. Potatoes in mayo. My fav potato salad is one my mom makes. Yukon gold potatoes cooked and cut up, mayo, Le Sueur Baby Peas (in the silver can)and cut up hard-boiled eggs. Sometimes I make a giant bowl and eat it in one day.

    4. Have you ever seen how the German bartenders pull a beer? It takes FIFTEEN minutes for them to get the head just right.

    5. #4 sounds like it might be fun without the beer.

  5. It’s amazing you can still blog when you’re in this state. I’m envisioning the computer attached to your brainwaves somehow so all the photos and words are just pumping into the blogosphere as you stagger your way back to your hotel room (room number on hand — good call)


  6. claire says:

    I always enjoy tagging along on your trips, Dave. And the value of the US dollar being what it is (as you’ve pointed out), vicarious is the sort of international travel I can afford.

    Have a safe trip back!

  7. Suzanne says:

    Not being a vegetarian myself, I would have to say the Flaming Wheel of Meat looks totally yummy.

    In fact, since I was a good girl and did 45 minutes of cardio at the gym today, I’m going to go rummage around my fridge to see if I can come up with reasonable facsimile here in my kitchen.

    Hope you’re not too hungover. Flying with a hangover sucks. Flying internationally with a hangover: BLEAH! It makes my nauseous just to think about it.

    But not too nauseous to rummage through the fridge…

    Safe travels back, Dave!

  8. kapgar says:

    Dude! You were so drunk you got your hand tatted and you didn’t even know it! What’s the significance of “342”?

  9. Lewis says:

    OH my god, so much to comment on here, but you already know I’m gonna let you have it good. First of all, I’ll play nice….the pic of the cathedral is HOT HOT HOT. Love that. And you know what I already harbor deep inside as far as your hotness and the giant spinning wheel of your meat goes. Take off that damned scarf thing, though. It’s gonnna get in my way.

  10. bogup says:

    I got this international calling card from Costco for Xmas so I called room 392. The woman who answered told me you had just left hours ago but you had a lotta fun.
    Everything on that meat wheel looks delicious! And, those folks on the street look like they know how to have a good time. Fun, fun, fun.

  11. Iron Fist says:

    “Giant Flaming Wheel of Meat” sounds like something you’d have to endure in the elimination round of a game show gone horribly wrong.

    (That being said, I would probably watch a game show that feature a giant flaming meatwheel.)

  12. the patient says:

    Dude… I was going to say… you’re wearing a scarf with clowns on it! You must have been drunk.

    But then you went ahead and said it yourself.

  13. Wayne says:

    I LOVE big steak fries with mayo. Well, with mayo and ketchup. Red Robin (gourmet burger and grill) has the best steak fries. Wendy’s fries are good with M+K. The small wimpy fries don’t really stand up so well.

    Now I think I know what I want for dinner!

  14. Michelle says:

    Is that mayonnaise on your fries? That is just wrong, evil even. Ugh.

    Sounds like a good time, sans mayonnaise covered fries.

  15. Mr. Fabulous says:

    Actually, you WOULD see that at my house. Every Thursday.

  16. mew says:

    your borg pictures are adorable

  17. Laurence says:

    You are so hot with your clown scarf ! :p

  18. ajooja says:

    Gotta love bleary-eyed, Drunk Dave. Have a nice trip.

  19. btw, I LOVE mayo with fries – and I don’t care what other pp say. LOVE IT (esp when you’re drunk.)

  20. Dave2 says:

    Penelope… Oh so delicious! It’s the perfect excuse to eat mayonnaise, which I love. I’d eat it straight out of the jar, but I think people might not approve…

    Hilly… Yes, I am downright adorable!! I can’t get over how cute I am there! I’d go on, but modesty prevents me from gushing any further…

    Adena… No no… still wearing my scarf and looking brutally hot! And fries with mayo is delectably right! It’s SO right that I find myself dreaming of them at night.

    Suzy… Guess you’ll have to fly to Köln next year for carnival to get your own scarf! Your potato salad sounds ever so dreamy, and you must give me the recipe. The Germans are picky, but nobody is pickier than the Irish and their Guinness! Fortunately, I was drinking out of the bottle and didn’t have to wait!

    CuriosityKiller… It took a lot of re-reading and re-typing, believe me. I am not a good drunk blogger (or so I think when I re-read entries once I’ve sobered up).

    Claire… When I get back, I’ll be eating peanut butter sandwiches for a month, and I do it all for you! 🙂

    Suzanne… That must be a well-stocked fridge indeed if you are expecting to pull a FLAMING WHEEL OF MEAT out of it! Be careful not to burn the house down! 😀

    Kapgar… It was my room number. Is the photo caption not showing up on your browser? Uh oh…

    Lewis… Once I remove the scarf, all my hotness will disappear! We can’t be having that!

    Bogup… Ah, that’s 342, not 392… so she must have been talking about some other bloke! Everybody had a GREAT time… including those puking in trash cans and laying in the gutter. Or maybe they had TOO good a time?

    Iron Fist… FEAR FACTOR GERMANY! I like it!

    The Patient… It was a preemptive blogging strike! I try to save my readers the trouble. 😀

    Wayne… I dunno… it used to be I mixed ketchup and mayo, but lately the ketchup is less and less as I go heavier on the mayo. Now that I’ve had 100% mayo, I may never go back!

    Michelle… Yes. Mayo. Delicious, wholesome, nutritious mayo!

    Mr. Fab… Well I was right then! I was worried it would be a daily occurrence.

    Mew… WAAAAHH! I DO LOOK LIKE A BORG!!! Sweet! I hadn’t thought of that before!

    Laurence… Yes, yes I am totally hot! Thanks for noticing! (as if you wouldn’t!). 🙂

    Ajooja… He is rather lovable… until the next morning…

  21. Bec says:

    Chips and mayo… A girl really shouldn’t drool this much!

  22. Oh, Dave. I gotta say. You are totally HAWT in that scarf, baby! 🙂

  23. kapgar says:

    No, the caption didn’t show or I missed it or something like that. Who knows. Oh well. Glad you enjoyed your luscious fries!

  24. Avitable says:

    Those potatoes with mayonnaise looked awesome.

  25. I’m inclined to agree with Emma. That scarf is awesome. Also, I’m glad you’ve discovered fries with mayo. As long as it’s good mayo (and as you know, quality varies a lot with that product) I think it’s perfect compliment to fried spuds.

  26. vulgarwizard says:

    These are some great shots. I greatly envy your travels. I hope to visit Wales someday (my grandmother was born in Swansey).

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