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Thread: "Und noch zwangzig Minuten bis Buffalo"

  1. #1
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    "Und noch zwangzig Minuten bis Buffalo"

    I know this site is based in Buffalo, and thought this might be sort of interesting to any Buffalo folks here.

    It seems this US city is "known" to Germans, via a poem by the 19th century German writer Theodor Fontane, which used to be included in poetry anthologys in German schools. Fontane wrote a poem, "John Maynard" about a shipwreck or ship explosion on Lake Erie, on ship, "Die Schwalbe", or "The Swallow" running between Detroit and Buffalo..John Maynard was the pilot....the poem ends each verse by counting down the time to Buffalo....30 minutes, 20 minutes, 15 minutes, and so forth.

    Heres the poem in its orignial German:

    John Maynard

    (I gather from my limited German that Maynard does not survive).

    Now, not sure if this was a real shipwreck or not, but sort of an interesting cross-cultural connection...a somewhat obscure US city enters into the memory of folks in a foreign land via a poem.

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    Cyburbian Emeritus Bear Up North's avatar
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    A "certain fish" must be swimming in another place today. I have been waiting and waiting for HIS response to this thread......waiting with "baited" breath, no less.....

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  3. #3
    Cyburbian Rumpy Tunanator's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Bear Up North
    A "certain fish" must be swimming in another place today. I have been waiting and waiting for HIS response to this thread......waiting with "baited" breath, no less.....

    Tiger Barb Bear
    The response is on its way


    Quote Originally posted by Trinity Moses
    Now, not sure if this was a real shipwreck or not, but sort of an interesting cross-cultural connection...a somewhat obscure US city enters into the memory of folks in a foreign land via a poem.
    Buffalo wasn't a somewhat obscure city during the late 19th century and early 20th century. It was a city located on a major transportation route that had many immigrants and trade pass through its port. I don't want to boost, but the city was the 8th largest in the U.S. at the turn of the century.

    As for shipwecks and this particular ship, I'd have to check it out as many ships went down in Lake Erie. Its not surprising that other countries mention this city though, as the city's collection of grain elevators is mentioned on foreign websites for their industrial design and disaportionate scale to the human environment. These grain elevators played a major role in the ports trade.

    I could go on, but I'll stop because its friday (wait saturday)

    Rumpy heading back to the water.
    Last edited by Rumpy Tunanator; 04 Dec 2004 at 12:43 AM. Reason: I'm a retard
    A guy once told me, "Do not have any attachments, do not have anything in your life you are not willing to walk out on in 30 seconds flat if you spot the heat around the corner."


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