EXPATS AGAIN! Experiencing other cultures while enriching our global view.



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Munich, Germany
I am married to the love of my life and am finally able to shower him with all of the attention he deserves. I am now retired and living the life here in Europe. I am an American, he is an Australian, and this is our second overseas address. The first was Shanghai, China and now Munich, Germany. Come along and live the life with us as we continue our adventure of discovering all Europe has to offer.

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Sunday, October 10, 2010


When I lived in the states, just about 18 months ago, I didn't realize that my hometown, Toledo, could have been so newsworthy.  However, since we have been living in Munich, we have become aware of more than a couple of stories coming out of our hometown.  First, let me say that nothing very newsworthy ever comes from Toledo, unless you want to count Jamie Farr, Klinger from MASH, the tv show fame, who is our native son. And then there are the Tony Packo Hungarian hot dogs he raved about on the show. They are pretty famous also.   Oh, I guess one might add the Toledo Mudhens baseball cap that he wore on the show too.  But other than that, Toledo is just not a memorable place for anyone or anything famous.  

But I think that is beginning to change.  Our first overseas news event from Toledo was when we caught a glimpse of our hometown on the German tv newscast here in Munich.  It was about a woman who got angry at a McDonald's drive-thru clerk because she wouldn't sell her a cheeseburger at 8:00 am. ( Who eats cheeseburgers at eight in the morning anyway?) The customer's anger led her to begin bashing in the drive-thru window and then hurling a drink at the clerk.  

Great stuff coming out of Toledo....

Months later, there was news of the mother who stepped outside of the Cheap Cuts hair salon (or something like that) while her daughter was waiting for a haircut.  When she returned back inside of the salon, her daughter was crying because a beautician cut her hair in a way she didn't like.  As any loving mom would, she attacked the hairdresser only to receive cuts and wounds from the hairdresser's shears that landed her in the hospital.

What in the world is going on in Toledo?

But the most recent international news event coming out of dear old Toledo is about  Rich Iott, a Republican candidate for the House of Representatives, who was photographed in a Nazi SS Waffen uniform all over the internet.   According to  "The Atlantic," Iott is involved with a group whose members are devoted to re-enacting the exploits of an actual Nazi division, the  55th Panzer Wiking, which fought mainly on the Eastern Front during World War II.

Photo from "Atlantic,"  Rich Iott second from right.

Well,  Mr. Iott, all I can say is that if you tried that uniform on and marched your stuff around here in Germany, you wouldn't just be getting heat from your possible constituents, ....No sir, you'd be in jail!

In Germany, it is illegal to wear an SS uniform.  

Just how do you explain to the Jewish community of Toledo (or anywhere for that matter), why you would want to glorify a unit that was formed to help exterminate millions of Jews? 

In the "Atlantic" article, according to a World War II expert, Eleonore Lappin, a noted Austrian historian: "The actual Wiking unit has a history as grisly as that of other Nazi divisions. In her book The Death Marches of Hungarian Jews Through Austria in the Spring of 1945, Eleonore writes that soldiers from the Wiking division were involved in the killing of Hungarian Jews in March and April 1945, before surrendering to American forces in Austria."

Well, it just goes to show you that when it comes to the absurd, the wild and the wacky, well....Toledo ranks right up there at the top!  Why, you can be living clear across the pond and still get the Toledo news in your living room! 

Now, how many cities can boast that claim to fame?

1 comment:

Kristin said...

OMG excellent post! I enjoyed reading this to my Brazilian friend (we're vacationing in Argentina) and got to tell her this is our new town. The Nazi thing is super weird but the other stories, esp the super cuts one, were great! Thanks for the laugh!