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April 18, 2013 2:42 AM   Subscribe


 
woah, never thought about that.

Mefites, here's what we'll do: PM me when you're coming to Vienna and we're gonna take tour looking for their apartments and favorite coffeehouses (or where they used to be).
It's gonna be something completely contrary to the popular Third Man and Before Sunrise tour!

(Those are good too, though. I don't mean to play them down.)
posted by bigendian at 2:54 AM on April 18, 2013 [10 favorites]


Reads like a fluff travel piece about Vienna but that's why I enjoyed it so much.
posted by Corduroy at 2:56 AM on April 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


Sounds like the premise for a terrible play about that one fateful day they all met up, but really it just reflects that fact that Vienna was a very important city before WWI.

Amusing that the BBC categorises this as "news".
posted by Segundus at 2:58 AM on April 18, 2013 [5 favorites]




It was all fine and dandy in Vienna until Trotsky had one sherry too many, Tito tried to shag Freud's mum and Hitler and Stalin couldn't agree on who won their game of Risk because they both knocked the board over in a fit of pique when they lost Poland.
posted by MuffinMan at 3:04 AM on April 18, 2013 [7 favorites]


but really it just reflects that fact that Vienna was a very important city before WWI.

Man oh man. Wouldn't it be cool to see a map showing the residences and hangouts of famous and "before-they-were-famous" people in every major city, in those years?

Cool article, thanks Gilgongo.
posted by cairdeas at 3:04 AM on April 18, 2013 [5 favorites]


Einstein was also in Vienna in 1913 (although he didn't live there). Einstein gave a major talk at the 85th meeting of the society of German natural scientists and physicians on September 23, 2013 in Vienna.1
posted by RichardP at 3:14 AM on April 18, 2013 [2 favorites]


Erwin Schrodinger was also in Vienna in 1913
Are you absolutely sure about that?
posted by fullerine at 3:18 AM on April 18, 2013 [38 favorites]


Seems like a good as time and place as any to point your time machine.
posted by Harald74 at 3:21 AM on April 18, 2013 [4 favorites]


That's where they go the idea for the TV show "Friends".
posted by robotot at 3:24 AM on April 18, 2013 [8 favorites]


Segundus: "Sounds like the premise for a terrible play about that one fateful day they all met up, but really it just reflects that fact that Vienna was a very important city before WWI.

Amusing that the BBC categorises this as "news".
"

This is in the Magazine section of the New site, which is for features like this one. It's better than they normally are. A salutary lesson in how quickly what can seem like a settled state of affairs can fall apart, driven by social and technological and the ambitions of individuals.

Also my first thought on reading this and thinking about the unknown future despots living among us was this rather excellent Onion article from last year - Person Who Will One Day Become Warlord-Ruler of What was Once Nebraska Born in Omaha Hospital.
posted by Happy Dave at 3:26 AM on April 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


This means nothing to me.
posted by longbaugh at 3:30 AM on April 18, 2013 [5 favorites]


Via the Today programme on radio 4 this morning?
posted by dmt at 3:46 AM on April 18, 2013


Now I'm imagining a turn-of-the-century Vienna version of The Young Ones, with Hitler, Stalin, Trotsky, and Freud all living in the same waa-aaa-acky student flat. Clearly, Hitler would be the Vyvyan of the group.
posted by Strange Interlude at 3:49 AM on April 18, 2013 [6 favorites]


One of history's greatest PR efforts: the world associates German-born Beethoven with Vienna, but not Austrian-born Hitler.
 
posted by Herodios at 3:51 AM on April 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


Paging Tom Stoppard to the thread, paging Tom Stoppard to the thread....
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 4:01 AM on April 18, 2013 [5 favorites]


While all 5 went on to solid careers, Tito had to live in the shadows of his more successful brothers.
posted by condour75 at 4:02 AM on April 18, 2013 [14 favorites]


Erwin Schrodinger was also in Vienna in 1913

Are you absolutely sure about that?


Of course; we just can't know what his momentum was at the time
posted by TedW at 4:08 AM on April 18, 2013 [8 favorites]


Hitler would be the Vyvyan of the group.

Hitler is Neil. Stalin is Vyvyan.
posted by griphus at 4:08 AM on April 18, 2013 [6 favorites]


Amusing that the BBC categorises this as "news".

Its in the News Magazine section. There's a lot of stuff on the bbc site that someone probably calls leveraging their output in the multimedia space or something similar but is basically ads for tv or radio programmes on the bbc.

Clearly, Hitler would be the Vyvyan of the group.

Nah, Hitler running around ranting on about life being unfair and Germany getting victimised by the treaties from WW1, so Rik. Stalin prone to psychopathic outbursts of violence so Vyvyan. I'm tending towards Freud for Neil, but with spin towards trying to understand why we can't all just love each other.
posted by biffa at 4:08 AM on April 18, 2013 [3 favorites]


Wouldn't Trotsky make a better Rick; the quiet, thoughtful people's poet type communist in contrast to Vyvyan's angry, destructive politics. Mike seems the most ambitious and right-wing of the group; he would make a good Hitler.
posted by TedW at 4:13 AM on April 18, 2013 [2 favorites]


That's where they got the idea for the TV show "Clone High".
posted by cthuljew at 4:16 AM on April 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


"Liebchen, I'm home."
"Gunther, what is wrong?"
"Ach! You would not believe the day I had at the coffeehouse today..."
posted by PlusDistance at 4:27 AM on April 18, 2013 [3 favorites]


Hitler running around ranting on about life being unfair and Germany getting victimised by the treaties from WW1

In 1913? Nah. Clearly Hitler is Mike.
posted by Jimbob at 4:28 AM on April 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


I tried to determine if they had a shared language, but apparently Stalin didn't speak German. He is claimed to speak passable English, but Hitler only knew a tiny bit of that language. So a bit hard to get them to share a flat, I guess...
posted by Harald74 at 4:43 AM on April 18, 2013


What happens when two future world leaders share an apartment and don't even speak the same language?

Find out at 8/7 central tonight on ABC Family.
posted by griphus at 4:48 AM on April 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


Einstein gave a major talk at the 85th meeting of the society of German natural scientists and physicians on September 23, 2013 in Vienna.

If anyone was going to conquer time travel, I'm glad it was Einstein.
posted by DigDoug at 5:20 AM on April 18, 2013 [6 favorites]


Take that Chelsea Hotel
posted by edgeways at 5:25 AM on April 18, 2013 [6 favorites]




Jim Henson's Dictator Babies (and Friends)!

(Also, Freud is Mike. And Hitler has to be Vyvyan because Eddie's full name on Bottom was Edward Elizabeth Hitler. QED.)
posted by The Underpants Monster at 5:40 AM on April 18, 2013


Of course; we just can't know what his momentum was at the time

You're violating Pauli's Lesser Exclusion Principal: Don't mix physics joke metaphors!
posted by kmz at 5:42 AM on April 18, 2013 [2 favorites]


I was afraid I might get called out on that, but said "what the heck" and posted it anyway.
posted by TedW at 6:00 AM on April 18, 2013


Iosif Vissarionovich Dzhugashvili

If he'd kept that name he would have won.
posted by crazylegs at 6:18 AM on April 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


The 20th century started in Europe! Gee, what a surprise!
posted by MisantropicPainforest at 6:22 AM on April 18, 2013


Iosif Vissarionovich Dzhugashvili

If he'd kept that name he would have won.


What, Scrabble?
posted by ZeusHumms at 6:43 AM on April 18, 2013 [3 favorites]


One of history's greatest PR efforts: the world associates German-born Beethoven with Vienna, but not Austrian-born Hitler.

Well, Hitler only lived in Vienna for 8 years (and apparently never liked the place), but Beethoven lived there for 35 years, so maybe it's not just PR.
posted by klausness at 6:49 AM on April 18, 2013


Wow, this is really incredible to think about. Thanks for posting it.
What, if any, would be the modern day equivalent of a central city like this with the broad exchange of ideas?
posted by staccato signals of constant information at 6:49 AM on April 18, 2013


Well, Hitler only lived in Vienna for 8 years (and apparently never liked the place),

So why did he want to keep it?
posted by biffa at 6:53 AM on April 18, 2013


Well, Hitler only lived in Vienna for 8 years (and apparently never liked the place),

So why did he want to keep it?


Keep it? You mean why did he want to annex Austria? He'd renounced his Austrian citizenship and acquired German citizenship, but apparently he thought that Austria should be part of greater Germany. But he apparently disliked the city of Vienna, in particular, not necessarily Austria in general. I imagine that his dislike of Vienna may have had something to do with all the non-germanic people there (as the article mentions, more than half of all Viennese were non-native).
posted by klausness at 7:00 AM on April 18, 2013


I thought this was about a reality show.
posted by jonmc at 7:03 AM on April 18, 2013 [2 favorites]




This is like the setup for a really great action movie where you go back in time, find Freud and Trotsky, and team up with them to take out Hitler, Tito, and Stalin.
posted by koeselitz at 8:05 AM on April 18, 2013 [2 favorites]




This is like the setup for a really great action movie where you go back in time, find Freud and Trotsky, and team up with them to take out Hitler, Tito, and Stalin.

Someone get Cronenberg on the line; we've got a million-dollar sequel idea here.
posted by griphus at 8:30 AM on April 18, 2013


I just had a crazy thought probably because I haven't had enough tea but I would so so watch a lavishly-costumed Vienna from 1900 - 1930 TV show with all these famous people bumping into each other on the street and shit. It would be like "spot the major influential thinker" except probably with more sex because we all know HBO would be the only one who'd fund it.
posted by WidgetAlley at 8:37 AM on April 18, 2013 [3 favorites]


Vienna in 1913 would have had Gustav Klimt and Egon Schiele running around town, as well.

This will be my first destination when they invent time travel.
posted by rocket88 at 8:42 AM on April 18, 2013 [3 favorites]


Fascinating; thanks for posting it. I knew about most of those people, but had no idea Stalin had ever visited Vienna, let alone living there for several weeks.
posted by languagehat at 8:55 AM on April 18, 2013


the quiet, thoughtful people's poet type

"Quiet" and "thoughtful" are two adjectives I'd never have thought to apply to Rick. I think he's the perfect Hitler, really--the failed artist, bitter that no one shared his belief in his artistic greatness.
posted by yoink at 8:56 AM on April 18, 2013


"Adolph, Adolph!" I swear, every time something blows up around here, it's always bloody "Adolph!"

Hitler . . . Stalin . . . Tito . . . Oh my ghod! It's James Last!
 
posted by Herodios at 9:13 AM on April 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


It doesn't say anything about Jermaine or La Toya.
posted by A dead Quaker at 10:01 AM on April 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


A few years later in Zurich there's an equal but opposite cultural soup
posted by Smedleyman at 10:46 AM on April 18, 2013


A lot of writers--including E. E. Cummings, John Dos Passos, Ernest Hemingway, and W. Somerset Maugham--were ambulance drivers during World War I. (Walt Disney and Ray Kroc trained as ambulance drivers but didn't serve before the war ended.)
posted by kirkaracha at 12:39 PM on April 18, 2013


"Well, Hitler only lived in Vienna for 8 years (and apparently never liked the place)..."

So why did he want to keep it?

klausness: Keep it? You mean why did he want to annex Austria? He'd renounced his Austrian citizenship and acquired German citizenship, but apparently he thought that Austria should be part of greater Germany. But he apparently disliked the city of Vienna, in particular, not necessarily Austria in general. I imagine that his dislike of Vienna may have had something to do with all the non-germanic people there (as the article mentions, more than half of all Viennese were non-native).


"In my eyes Vienna is a pearl to which I will give a proper setting."
Adolf Hitler, Vienna, April 9, 1938

The quote is used for the title of a scorchingly readable history of Vienna under Hitler, "The Setting of the Pearl" by Thomas Weyr (OUP, 2005).
I happened to read it just before my first ever visit to Vienna a couple of years back - and it absolutely transformed the trip.
posted by Jody Tresidder at 1:03 PM on April 18, 2013 [2 favorites]


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