The magnificent, insane castles of Ludwig II of Bavaria are slowly decaying. (Come for the architecture, stay for the orgies and proposed bank robberies.) As the article notes, "Ludwig kept hundreds of upholsterers, wood carvers and gilders busy, along with engineers and Siemens technicians." He spent himself into debt for the sake of his castles, many of which were designed after inspirations from Wagner, and some of which may have been built specifically for Wagner performances. [more inside]
Die Woodys - Fichtl's Lied: Eine Produktion von Tony Marshall. Superhitparade der Volksmusik 1984
In 2012, selections from an archive of five hundred previously undiscovered fairy tales, found in Regensburg, Germany, were published by Erika Eichenseer. The fairy tales were collected by the historian Franz Xaver von Schönwerth, a contemporary of the brothers Grimm. Last year, an English translation of the collection was published. Here are three of the stories, in translation:
"Whereas yesterday's Cora Pearl was eccentric, charming and a little cold-hearted, today's Victorian courtesan, La Païva, is straight-up eerie. Like, so eerie that a lot of people thought she was a vampire. My hand to Baby Jesus, people actually believed she was a supernatural being. " Bizarre Victoria shares (what else) bizarre, scandalous, and noteworthy stories form the Victorian era (and more). What do you serve at a country club for fat men? Devil's footprints! Lola Montez: servant whipper, de facto ruler of Bavaria. Empress Sissi and her No Good Very Bad Life. Aristocratic marriage at gunpoint. Public pubic hair trimming. Specialties of the Victorian Brothel. Curing hiccups by setting your shirt on fire. Gilded Age Arranged Marriages.
There are more than 700 curious tunnel networks in Bavaria, but their purpose remains a mystery. Were they built as graves for the souls of the dead, as ritual spaces or as hideaways from marauding bandits? Archeologists are now exploring the subterranean vaults to unravel their secrets. [more inside]
Hitchcock's first in 1925. Kubrick in 1957. Sturges in 1963. Bergman, Huston, Ophüls, and Wilder. Sound of Music in 1965. Willy Wonka in 1971. Also, Monty Python made their Fliegender Zirkus specials there in 1971 and 1972. Film history and all that. Sure. But to my mind, the best part of the Bavarian Film Studios is being able to go inside the actual submarine from Das Boot. Or you can ride on that flying dog thing from Neverending Story... if that's how you roll.
Residents of the Fuggerei in Augsburg pay an annual rent of just one Rheinischer Gulden, the same as in 1520. There are a few conditions: one must be poor, Catholic, an Augsburg resident for two years, and pray thrice daily for the souls of the Fuggers.
slappity-slappity-BOOM!-slappity-slap-slap-slap-BOOM!... Slap dancing from opposite ends of the earth! In Samoa, it’s called the Fa'ataupati; it’s said to have originated out of the need to swat insects away. And in the Tyrolean Alps, it’s called the Schuhplattler, supposedly the oldest surviving dance in Europe. And on MetaTalk, it goes like this, amirite? [more inside]
King Ludwig II of Bavaria was known as the "Fairy-tale King" and the "Mad King" due to his unusual upbringing, eccentric behavior and architectural projects based on Wagnerian operas. For the last 121 years the official word on his death was that he committed suicide along with his psychiatrist, Professor Bernhard von Gudden, by drowning himself in Lake Starnberg. New evidence suggests what many have long suspected.....dum dum dum....Murder.