The catastrophe

The coronavirus period is a continuous equinox*.

30 April 2020 by Klaus Meier 

All the versions of this article: [Deutsch] [English]


Berlin after the explosion of the economic neutron bomb. The nutritional basis is now Soylent Green... Corona night makes everything the same. Nothing counts anymore. Day/night, money/nothing-money, right/wrong. Nothing is everything and everything is nothing. At least as far as the cash register is concerned. You could go crazy.

Taxi stop Rathaus Steglitz

Ohne Corona rund um die Uhr besetzt.
Ohne Corona rund um die Uhr besetzt.

Taxi stop Lietzenburger

Vor Corona reichten die 7 Stellplätze nie.
Vor Corona reichten die 7 Stellplätze nie.

Taxi stop Lietzenburger

Sechs große Hotels brauchen keine Taxis
Sechs große Hotels brauchen keine Taxis

Climate catastrophe

Was macht der Eisbär in Berlin?
Was macht der Eisbär in Berlin?

Taxi stop Bundesplatz

Die illegalen Taxis sind hungrig.
Die illegalen Taxis sind hungrig.

That’s what I hear from all my colleagues, with small differences:

Shift turnover taxi during the day: € 50.00
Shift turnover taxi at night: € 50,00
Gross wage: 38% of this, hardly enough for a mini-job
Payout about 16 to 20 euros net wage for 10 to 12 hours work with 8 to 10 hours waiting at the stop.

The colleague in the taxi in this picture explains why he is doing this: short-time working allowance has not yet arrived, amount unknown. Whether the boss will pay it to him is uncertain. His wife is working. That’s why he can’t apply for ALG II. He has to work, even if he only brings home ten euros per shift. Why doesn’t he claim the statutory minimum wage from his boss? He doesn’t do that.

There are twice as many Ubers as taxis on the road that night. I am told:

At Uber there is 50% of what the intermediary leaves, presumably 19% VAT is still deducted. The megacorporation keeps 30% of the turnover. Turnover is no better than in a taxi. What do you get out of it? With the same turnover, 14 to 17 euros for the shift, roughly estimated. Black. But the wages are not always paid. Unbelievable


How does this constant stress make you feel? That’s roughly how some colleagues describe it:

Minimum wage? I’ve heard of it. The main thing is that something comes in.
It doesn’t matter what you do, it doesn’t come in anymore. So you do nothing. You wait.
For weeks. And before that too.
Would a change be good? The main thing is that it doesn’t get worse.
Can it be changed? Most certainly. What exactly will happen is up to each individual driver.
* Equinox
The equinox is the name given to the two calendar days of a year on which daylight and night are approximately the same length.
This applies to every place (except the poles) on earth. And on these days, the sun rises almost exactly in the east and sets in the west everywhere on earth.
The fact that there are only two days a year with this special characteristic is due to the fact that the Earth’s axis does not intersect its orbital plane around the Sun perpendicularly, but maintains its direction in space and wobbles relative to the orbital plane as seen from the Sun during the Earth’s orbit.

Equinox as a permanent state means standstill, remaining in a state of exception. It’s like driving a taxi in times of coronavirus.

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Do you have other experiences? You want to add something? I look forward to your reaction.

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