[Home]Potsdamer Platz Variation

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The official name for what was informally known as the Berlin Wall Game. Prior to 1990 this variation was regarded by most international players as the most challenging version of the game ever devised: it was actually impossible to win without breaking the rules, and anyone discovered cheating was shot. The variation became, to the regret of some, trivially easy after the re-unification of Germany.

The part played by Mornington Crescent in the negotiations leading up to German re-unification has until now been unknown to all but a small circle of statesmen and senior diplomats. There was a top-secret cell of fanatical adherents of the Potsdamer Platz variation in the highest echelons of the British Foreign Office, and they realised all too well what would happen to their favourite pastime if the Berlin Wall came down. They very nearly succeeded in sabotaging the whole process (indeed, only two weeks before re-unification was agreed the British Ambassador in Bonn said it would take ten years to achieve). Fortunately, Maggie Thatcher's detestation of anything to do with railways exceeded even her hatred of foreigners, and as soon as she got wind of the diplomats' plot she gave Chancellor Kohl the go-ahead. The rest is history.

And the errant diplomats? We are not at liberty to name them, but can reveal that one of the ring-leaders met with a still-unexplained "accident" on the Northern Line shortly afterwards, while most of the rest were allowed to take early retirement. The most horrible fate of all was suffered by one brilliant individual, the acknowledged champion of the Potsdamer Platz variation, who was forcibly transferred to the Department of Transport, where, his reason by then completely gone, he supervised the privatisation of British Rail.


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Edited September 17, 2004 12:44 am by JLE (diff)