The Berlin Perspective: What Archaeologists Will Find Here in 2000 Years from Now
On a hot day in the year 4019, some people with little shovels, buckets and tooth brushes might dig into the desert which will cover the area known as Berlin today. Here is what they will find.
Archaeologists will be stunned when they dig up the chewing gum I stuck to a pizzeria table the other day, because there was no trash can or ashtray. In their report, they will write the Berliners had “loved chewing all day long. When they were done eating, they chewed on so-called gums made for that purpose. And then they stuck those items to pizzeria tables.”
Those people digging in the sand will unearth quite a few uncompleted construction sites. Unfortunately, the corresponding part of their report will not exactly sound flattering: “Berliners started millions of construction projects without ever finalizing them. In 2017, they started refurbishing ‘Karl Marx Strasse’ and never finished the damned thing.”
“In 2006, they wanted to build a new airport”, the report will read. “Once it was completed 1114 years later, in the year 3120, aircraft did not exist anymore. So they used it as a fast food restaurant.” Our descendants will wonder what in the hell was wrong with us. And they will have a point.
The archaeological endeavor in 4019 will bring to light so many interesting items, they will probably open a Berlin Museum. A petrified ‘currywurst’ which was bitten into 2000 years earlier will be one of the highlights. “In the Berlin of the year 2019, residents mainly ate ‘currywurst'”, a plate at the museum will say. “Historians have not been able to figure out how they managed to choke down that kind of food.”
They will also dig up a sign splattered with bird scat on which it says “Rigaer Straße 94 remains occupied” written by squatters 2000 years earlier, and one digital sign saying “Because of a malfunction in the operating procedure, the next ‘S-Bahn’ trains will have delays of up to 20 minutes. We apologize.” Well, the archaeologists will be able to draw more conclusions. “In 2019, the Berliners were a very polite bunch of people. Nothing really worked properly in their city, but at least they apologized.”
Our descendants will definitely admire us for having bike lanes on ‘Oberbaumbrücke’ which were 2 meters wide. “It took the Berliners several attempts to get the measurements right”, the report will say. “This is one of the few projects in which they succeeded, after decades of trying.”
Other finds will lead to even more historical wisdom: “They had this thing about walls. First they built a long wall through the city. Then they noticed they hated that thing. So they got rid of it in the late 20th century.” This point will make us look good.