In the US you can find Pizza Vending Machines. Dubai has a Gold Vending Machine. And Berlin? Berlin has Cigarette Vending Machines – and the “Madenautomat” – a vending machine which sells live bait. More specifically – small green plastic cases filled with live maggots.
I had an hour to kill on a Saturday afternoon, so I decided to venture out into the heart of Wedding in search of this curiosity. My lovely partner surely must have thought I’m all sorts of special after I had told her I was going to Wedding (for those not familiar with Berlin – Wedding has a reputation for being rather “rough”) to take pictures of a vending machine which spits out live maggots. She didn’t seem any more thrilled when I told her they supposedly only cost 1€! What a bargain!
After a short walk from the U-Bahn Station (U9) Amrumer Straße, passing by several afro-asian supermarkets and a Bollywood DVD rental store (Wedding, I’m beginning to like you more and more) I finally arrived at my destination.
I felt a slight thrill to see that this obscure vending machine was still there – and I got even more excited to see that there were some maggots left! I was worried that the machine might have been removed by now, or that it was too cold for them to stock it with live maggots.
Just in case you were wondering why this thing looks like a cigarette vending machine – it was exactly just that before it was converted by the Koss Tackle and Bait Store which stocks the machine (which is conveniently located right next to their store).
Curiosity got the better of me and I just had to drop in a euro and try it out. Were there really going to be live maggots in there? Even though I knew what was inside, I just had to see it to believe it. With a rather forceful pull – which reminded me of my delinquent youth sneakily buying cigarettes – out plopped a green plastic container. I put my ear to it (why not?) and I could hear them crawling inside. I opened the canister – and oh what a surprise! Live Maggots!
Bonus Video: Unboxing at the Madenautomat
Now here comes the part which I didn’t really think about – now that I had bought the maggots, what do I do with them? I wasnt keen on the idea of dragging these things in my jacket pocket, nor did I want to throw them in the trash. It seemed like kind of a waste. After walking around the block, I found a nice park and dumped out the bait in a patch of grass. Bird Food.
So what else is there to say – it’s a Maggot Vending machine after all. I’m a big fan of the odd and seemingly pointless adventures, if you are as well, (and you are ever in Wedding) make a Beeline for the Madenautomat.
Der Madenautomat Address
Tegeler Straße 36-37
13353 Berlin Wedding