Wednesday, November 26, 2008


One of the things I've learned about German etiquette, is that you don't have to ask if you need take your shoes off when you enter someones house, you just do, ALWAYS. However the Germans are kinda crazy about keeping everything covered.(Hence the scarf madness, seriously everyone wears them all the time.) So they're very big fans of of slippers, or house shoes as they call them. So naturally they do not expect their guests to walk around in socks, you would get sick! So most Germans keep extra pairs of slippers sitting around in their entryway, just for guests. In one store I even saw a kinda bag you hang on the wall just for your "guest slippers." I think that's just really awesome, I think it makes a people feel so much more comfortable. I keep thinking should buy one of those and try to bring it back to America, but I think a lot of Americans would find that weird. But it definitely keeps your carpets cleaner.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

My First "Lost in Translation" Experience

Funny story... The senior missionary couple were hosting a large dinner, with the 3 sets of misionaries, 5 people who the missionaries were teaching, and me.(14 people all together) To begin, there's a joke all the female missionaries have about their "German Baby" caused by eating way too much of the tasty German food.

So after this dinner (which once again caused everyone to overeat from tastiness), I was standing in the kitchen with the Senior missionary sister, and two men. The Sister speaks almost no German, and these to men spoke almost no English, so I was the one best suited for translation when gesturing didn't cut it. (not a good situation) Well the sister made a comment about her "German Baby" and one of the men thought she was talking about me, so I attempted to explain this concept of gaining wait and joking about how you're pregnant. I thought I did an okay job... not perfect grammer but most of the right words. Until several minutes later, the other man looked at me and asked "so are you pregnant?" I'm not sure if what I said implied that or if he just wasn't paying attention, either way I turned bright red and adamently assured him that no, I was not in any way pregnant.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

They love them that English

Okay so before I came to Germany I was on a crusade to stop the American use of the word "ueber" for several reasons; one being the inability of English speakers to say the umlauted "U", but mostly because they have no idea how to use it (it means over if you would say over don't say ueber). However I am officially giving that up.
My thought was if you want to ruin your own language fine, but you shouldn't ruin other peoples. Apparently nobody else thinks that, especially the Germans. Most people here have at least a rudimentary knowledge of English, enough to deal with the tourist. So advertising in English is a really big thing, "put it in English, it's cooler." Unfortunately they don't seem to get actual English speakers to develop this advertising, they just insert English adjectives like "super" Deluxe" and "Amazing." So they don't really understand the differences between all these words and you get signs saying "we have DELUXE deals" which sounds terrible. I keep finding shirts that are supposed to be cool but just sound very proper like: "I am not a model. I just look like I am one" and "I am born to reign" I just keep laughing at the things that really aren't supposed to be funny.
So appreciate your English. Congratulations you are speaking the coolest language in the world.