a brush with swiss bureaucracy

“sesselfurzerin, sesselFURZERIN, SESSELFURZERIN, verdammte SESSELFURZERIN…”, the swearing in my head grew louder by the minute. i needed to do something as simple as getting my ID renewed for my upcoming travels. yet within minutes – what am i saying? seconds – i was fuming. and that quite usually happens when i have a brush with swiss democracy. sad.

somebody farting onto a chair, is what “sesselfurzer” means if you translate it literally. it’s our pejorative term for bureaucrats – the swissgerman “pencilpusher”.

sesselfurzer! i hate them. and unfortunatley we have tons of them in this godforsaken country. in fact every single time i have to visit or call a goverment agency i have to deal with the sesselfurzers.

so. a new ID i needed. the woman sitting behind the desk that morning was actually strikingly beautiful and judging from her name, she must originally be from one of the ex-yugoslavian countries. educated guess, her name: something-ic. “they won’t accept this photo, you know, because its from one of those cheap machines in the trainstation, you know, you know” (in the corner of the room stands a machine that takes color photos [ugh!] for 17.- swissfranks [ugh!]). “we can’t guarantee that you will get your ID by the end of august, you know” (i did this on the 18.!). “all you can do if you need to get an ID for your travels is get a temporary passport, you know” (costs 100.- swissfranks and valid only 1 year, thank you very much).

as i read this i realise that factually she is so not to blame. she is not “making the rules”, she just “works there”. but the way she told me these things is what got me fuming. with that air of supperiority, with that take-this-you-weasel expression, with that smug smile on her face – as if farting onto her chair at the same time.

About Jan Zuppinger

Jan Zuppinger has been writing this blog since 2002. He likes to grow vegetables. He likes to eat them too. He has opinions on everything, but sadly no one cares. Jan Zuppinger is not joking, just joking, he is joking, just joking, he's not joking. *click.