To explain this and the upcoming posts tagged “A Swissbook”, I have to go back to the guest bathroom of the house I grew up in. On a small shelf we had a huge collection of small distractions; dictionaries translating between German dialects, various cartoons, small brainteasers and of course books. One of these books was “Ein Schweizerbuch” (A Swissbook) by RenÃ© Schweizer (http://www.rene-schweizer.ch/), a collection of nonsense or plain absurd letters to numerous officials. Somehow this book made it to my new flat and cheered me up many times.
At a recent party with friends and a nice big bowl of “Feuerzangenbowle” I passed the book around and people just smiled and giggled reading a few of the correspondences. As some of them don’t speak German natively, I started translating on the fly and the idea came up to publish an English translation.
With the kind permission of RenÃ© Schweizer himself, I decided to feature some excerpts in my blog:
Aus der Lyss 20
Tel. 25 12 06
Basel, 25th January 1977
Department of Public Prosecution
I shat my pants and would like to know if this is an offence liable to public prosecution.
Respectfully with gratitude for you effort
During the next few days or weeks I will publish more excerpts of this “tactical madness”, as the author calls it.
For those who read German, I can only suggest to have a look at “Das Original – Ein Schweizerbuch“, a collection of correspondences of the last 30 years.
Tim (who believes in casual madness)