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William C. Altreuter
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Monday, September 27, 2004


It's a pretty city, but the sky didn't look like this. It rained pretty much the whole time, and it was colder than I was really ready for. Still, I managed to get a nice six miler in, out along the path that runs along the river, and back along the path on the other side. I'm really always a little uncomfortable in German speaking places: the default assumption, what with my name, and the way I look and all, is that I am German, and people are surprised that I don't speak the language. It is a little like being a white guy in a place full of racists, but nastier. The Austrians are at considerable pains to make sure that you understand that they are not Germans and in fact will privately confide that they regard themselves as "the first victims". This sort of denial is hard to swallow, even from people who are very agreeable and nice in every other way, but knowing that they are in denial makes it all the more chilling when you see a swastika spray painted on a bridge abutment. I mean, you see that sort of thing in the US too, but we have a different history. When I see a Confederate Battle Flag I am offended, and a little angry, and a little sad about the ignorance that is woven into American life. If I were mayor of Salzburg I'd make a point of having a crew on call to clean up graffiti 24/7. Posted by Hello

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