Friday, November 30, 2012

WDR: Warum gibt es einen Kauf Nix Tag?

Das ERSTE FERNSEHSENDUNG:   KAUF NIX TAG

SUPER! 

In der Zukunft werden wir alle weniger kaufen wollen?
(Will we all choose to buy less stuff in the future?)

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

2012 Karneval - Stufe 1 singt AlexiBexis DYNAMIT!


Krampus fasziniert!

HIER IST EINE TOLLE KRAMPUS MASKE

Cassandra Steen - Gebt alles



Gebt alles

Gewinner, seid Sieger!
Taucher, taucht tiefer!
Liebende, liebt noch intensiver!
Hellseher, seht heller!
Zeit heilt die Wunden schneller.
Kinder, seid noch kindlicher!
Suchende, sucht und findet mehr!
Sänger, singt von der Herrlichkeit!
Gläubige, erzählt von der Ewigkeit!
Trainer, trainiert gekonnter,
Denn sonst wer bleibt nicht sonst wer.
Dichter, schreibt nur noch Liebeslieder!
Schuster, bringt uns das Handwerk wieder!
Maler, malt das Leben,
Denn was kann es Schöneres geben?
Gebt alles, wir sind der Boden, der uns trägt.
Gebt alles, denn wir sind das, was uns bewegt. Alles
Wir halten es in unserer Hand.
Gebt alles von Anfang an!
Götter, seid stärker!
Gelehrte, gelehrter!
Ärzte, macht das Leben lebenswerter!
Richter, richtet uns milder!
Tänzer, tanzt noch viel wilder!
Sehnsucht, werde heißer!
Sesam, öffne dich weiter!
Sänger, singt von der Herrlichkeit!
Gläubige, erzählt von der Ewigkeit!
Trainer, trainiert gekonnter!
Denn sonst wer bleibt nicht sonst wer.
Dichter, schreibt nur noch Liebeslieder!
Schuster, bringt uns das Handwerk wieder!
Politiker, schafft Klarheit,
Denn die Wirklichkeit braucht Wahrheit.
Gebt alles, wir sind der Boden der uns trägt.
Gebt alles, denn wir sind das, was uns bewegt. Alles
Wir halten es in unserer Hand.
Gebt alles von Anfang an!
Gebt alles, behaltet nichts für euch!
Gib alles, behalte nichts für dich!
Oh Oh .. Oh Ouh-Oh.
Gebt alles, behaltet nichts für euch!
Gebt alles! Es ist leicht, ganz, ganz leicht.
Oh Oh .. Oh Ouh-Oh.
Manchmal fühlt es sich zu viel an,
Der Wind sich zu kühl an.
Du bist müde und leer.
Doch du kennst es, du weißt es,
Gehst du noch mal weiter, schenkt das Leben dir mehr!
Gebt alles, wir sind der Boden der uns trägt,
Gebt alles, denn wir sind das, was uns bewegt. Alles
Wir halten es in unserer Hand.
Gebt alles von Anfang an!
Gebt alles, behaltet nichts für euch!
Gib alles, behalte nichts für dich!
Oh Oh .. Oh Ouh-Oh.
Gebt alles, behaltet nichts für euch!
Gebt alles! Es ist leicht, ganz, ganz leicht.
Oh Oh .. Oh Ouh-Oh.

English Translation

Give it all

Winners, be victors.
Divers, dive deeper.
Lovers, love more intensively.
Clairvoyants, see clearer.
Time heals the wounds quicker.
Children, be more childlike.
Searchers, search and find more. Singers, sing about the magnificence.
Believers, talk about eternity.
Coaches, coach more skillfully.
Because whoever doesn’t remain whoever.
Poets, write nothing but love songs.
Cobblers, bring us back the craft.
Painters, paint life,
Because what could be more beautiful?
Give it all, we are the ground that supports us.
Give it all, because we are that which moves us. Everything
We hold it in our hand.
Give it all right from the start.
Gods, be stronger.
Scholars, more scholarly.
Doctors, make life more worth living.
Judges, judge us more gently.
Dancers, dance even more wildly.
Longing, be hotter.
Sesame, open wider.
Singers, sing about the magnificence.
Believers, talk about eternity.
Coaches, coach more skillfully,
Because whoever doesn’t remain whoever.
Poets, write nothing but love songs.
Cobblers, bring us back the craft.
Politicians, create clarity,
Because reality requires truth.
Give it all, we are the ground that supports us.
Give it all, because we are that which moves us. Everything
We hold it in our hand.
Give it all right from the start.
Give it all, keep nothing for yourselves.
Give it all, keep nothing for yourself.
Oh oh .. oh ouh ouh.
Give it all, keep nothing for yourselves.
Give it all. It is easy, really, really easy.
Oh oh .. oh ouh ouh.
Sometimes it feels like too much,
The wind feels to cool.
You are tired and empty.
But you know it, you’re aware of it,
Go a little bit further and life will give you more.
Give it all, we are the ground that supports us.
Give it all, because we are that which moves us. Everything
We hold it in our hand.
Give it all right from the start.
Give it all, keep nothing for yourselves.
Give it all, keep nothing for yourself.
Oh oh .. oh ouh ouh.
Give it all, keep nothing for yourselves.
Give it all. It is easy, really, really easy.
Oh oh .. oh ouh ouh.

"Feuerwerk" -- von den GAPP V Tänzer aus Burgau



Ha-ha!  Im Videoraum schrieben sie selber einen Abschied.  TOLLLL!

Monday, November 26, 2012

Von Langenscheidt: Die Jugendworte 2012


(Uff!)

Wissen Sie, was „Komasutra“ heißen soll?

München - Viele Erwachsene werden mit dem Begriff wenig anfangen können, dennoch ist „Yolo“ zum Jugendwort des Jahres gekürt worden. Auch die nächstplatzierten Sprachkreationen sind bemerkenswert.

Eine 6-köpfige Jury des Langenscheidt Verlags wählte dieses im Internet häufig benutzte Wort unter 40 000 Einsendung aus, wie das Magazin „Focus“ berichtet. „Yolo“ sei ein Akronym und stehe für „You only live once“ (Du lebst nur einmal) - eine Aufforderung, alle Chancen auf Erlebnisse zu nutzen. Der Wettbewerb bestätige, dass der Einfluss des Internets auf den Sprachgebrauch weiter wächst.

Auf dem zweiten Platz landete die Abkürzung „FU!“, die für „Fuck You!“ steht.

Auf Platz drei kam das aus dem Arabischen stammende Wort „Yalla!“, übersetzt heißt es so viel wie „Beeil dich!“.

„Wulffen“ schaffte es auf Platz vier. Das Wort ist eine Anspielung auf die Affäre von Ex-Bundespräsident Christian Wulff und kann „jemandem die Mailbox vollquatschen“ oder auch „auf Kosten anderer leben“ bedeuten.

Auf Platz fünf setzte die Jury das Wort „Komasutra“, das den „versuchten Geschlechtsverkehr zwischen zwei sehr betrunkenen Personen“ beschreibt.

Die Wahl, mit der das Verlagshaus auch für sein Lexikon der Jugendsprache werben will, gibt es seit 5 Jahren.
  • 2011 gewann der Rap- Ausdruck „Swag“ für eine lässig-coole Ausstrahlung;
  • 2010 stand „Niveaulimbo“ für das Absinken des geistigen Standards an der Spitze. 
  • 2009 gewann das umstrittene Wort „hartzen“ als Beschreibung für Arbeitslosigkeit oder Rumhängen. 
  • Zum ersten „Jugendwort des Jahres“ wurde 2008 „Gammelfleischparty“ gekürt - eine Bezeichnung junger Leute für Ü-30-Partys (literally, party for old meat).

Friday, November 23, 2012

Truck Stop - Ich möcht' so gern Dave Dudley hör'n

1978  Diese Gruppe ist mir völlig neu.  Sie singen aber immer weiter  (Take it Easy, altes Haus ist eigentlich kein schlecht-gesungenes Lied, doch folgendes Ami-inspirierte Lied wird meistens genügend sein.)  Yes, there is a significant "Western" influence that continues in Germany today.



Truck Stop - Ich möcht' so gern Dave Dudley hör'n 1978

Es ist schon weit nach Mitternacht,
mein Tag ist längst vorbei,
mir fallen gleich die Augen zu,
verdammte Fahrerei.
Der NDR bringt Tanzmusik,
ich krieg nichts and'res rein,
das geht so durch bis 6 Uhr früh,
ich glaub', ich schlaf gleich ein.

REFRAIN:
Ich möcht' so gern Dave Dudley hör'n,
Hank Snow und Charly Pride,
'nen richtig schönen Country-Song,
doch AFN ist weit.
Ich möcht' so gern Dave Dudley hör'n,
Hank Snow und Charly Pride,
'nen richtig schönen Country-Song,
doch AFN ist weit.

Schneesturm auf der Autobahn
und vor mir keine Spur,
ich seh' die blauen Schilder kaum
und ahn' die Fahrbahn nur.
Drum nehm ich mir mein Funkgerät, Kanal 410:
An alle, hier spricht Gunther G,
ich hab' da ein Problem.

REFRAIN:

Ich halt am nächsten Rasthof an
und leg 'ne Pause ein,
ich schlaf am Tisch, ein Kellner kommt
und fragt: Was soll's denn sein?
Ich schau ihn an und weiß genau,
der Mann wird's nicht versteh'n,
ich möchte weder Milchkaffee,
noch will ich schwarzen Tee.

REFRAIN:
---


Literal Translation:
It is nearly after midnight, my day is already over,
I almost fall asleep, bloody driving.

The NDR* sends dance music, I don't get another radio station here,
this is going until 6 o'clock in the morning, I believe I will fall asleep very soon.

I'd love to listen to Dave Dudley, Hank Snow and Charley Pride,
a really good country song, but AFN is far away.

Snowstorm upon the highway, no tire tracks in front of me,
I can hardly see the blue traffic signs, and can only imagine the driving lane.
That's why I take the CB radio, channel 410. To everyone, Gunter G. talking,
I have a problem here: 

REFRAIN

I stop by at the next roadhouse and take a break.
I fall asleep at the table, a waiter comes and asks me: What may it be?
I look at him and know exactly, the man will not understand it,
I do neither want white coffee nor black tea.

REFRAIN:

*The NDR is a north German broadcasting company.

Hesse und Xavier Naidoo

HIER EIN CONTEST -- Von Step into German.  -- Warum nicht ein TSHIRT (oder etwas elektronisches?)  gewinnen!



Worum geht dieses Gedicht  Der Liebende
Hermann Hesse (1877-1962)

Nun liegt dein Freund wach in der milden Nacht,
Noch warm von dir, noch voll von deinem Duft,
Von deinem Blick und Haar und Kuß -
       o Mitternacht,
O Mond und Stern und blaue Nebelluft!
In dich, Geliebte, steigt mein Traum
Tief wie in Meer, Gebirg und Kluft hinein,
Verspritzt in Brandung und verweht zu Schaum,
Ist Sonne, Wurzel, Tier,
Nur um bei dir,
Um nah bei dir zu sein.
Saturn kreist fern und Mond, ich seh sie nicht,
Seh nur in Blumenblässe dein Gesicht,
Und lache still und weine trunken,
Nicht Glück, nicht Leid ist mehr,
Nur du, nur ich und du, versunken
Ins tiefe All, ins tiefe Meer,
Darein sind wir verloren,
Drin sterben wir und werden neugeboren.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Prinz Pi rappt: Drei Kreuze für Deutschland

Per STEP INTO GERMAN:  "Since the release of his first album in 1998, the rapper has published fourteen records and collaborated with many stars of the German hip hop scene. Prinz Pi is known for his socially conscious and critical lyrics and does not back off from controversial subjects.

(His) real name is Friedrich Kautz (and he) was born in 1979. He grew up in a typical middle-class family in Berlin. As a teenager, he studied ancient Greek in high school and discovered his passion ... Since “Pi” is not only Greek but, as the rapper says, also “the link to his classical education and a cool mystical number”, he changed his name to Prinz Pi – and suddenly received the attention of a growing number of journalists and magazine editors.

In "Drei Kreuze für Deutschland" Pi sympathizes with those German soldiers who died during the military intervention in Afghanistan, or because of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder after their return to a “normal” life. 



SONGTEXT:  ERSTE STROPHE
Der Vater ein Kapitän, er ist bei der Marine,
Ein großer Soldat mit unbeweglicher Miene.
Er kommandiert sein Schiff und auch seine Familie,
Seine Uniform sitzt tadellos, er zeigt nie seine Liebe.
Er zeigt nie eine Schwäche, denn er muss befehlen.
Er war keinen Tag im Dienst krank, denn er darf nie fehlen.
Wenn der Vater predigt, ist sein Gott Disziplin.
Der Wind scheint ihn mitzuziehen.
Sie warten auf das Schiff mit ihm.
Seine zwei Söhne wurden so schnell erwachsen.
Das Hochzeitsfoto zeigt sein einziges Lachen.
Seine Fregatte muss zum Persischen Golf los.
-- Nachts geht ein Mann über Bord, die Suche erfolglos.
Kein Sarg kommt nach Haus, nur ein Kreuz am Band.
Irgendwo sinkt seine Leiche auf den Grund.
-- Das kleine Kreuz, es liegt leicht,
Es liegt so leicht auf Mutters Hand.
Dann bellt draußen ein Hund.
(Refrain)
Da steht ein Haus am Meer, ein kleines Haus am Meer.
Mit Mutter, Vater und zwei Söhnen und sie liebt sie sehr,
Und einem Labrador und einem Familienwagen.
Und in der Küche sieht man Mutter warten.
Da steht ein Haus am Meer, ein kleines Haus am Meer.
Mit Mutter, Vater und zwei Söhnen und sie liebt sie sehr.
Und einem Labrador und einem Familienwagen.
Schon seit vielen Jahren sieht man die Mutter warten.

ZWEITE STROPHE
Der große Bruder kehrt zurück,
In seinem Kopf knallen Gewehre,
Und schreien die Kameraden, sie schreien seinen Namen.
Und wenn er träumt, dann sieht er die Straßen
In bräunlichen Farben, gesäumt von Irakern.
Und er weiß, die Bomben, die Bomben,
Sie warten auf seine Kameraden,
Die Jungs, die dort starben.
Und dem einen nahmen sie beide Arme,
Einem anderen seine Augen und dreien ihre Nasen.
-- Und er konnte nichts machen und das ist das Schlimme.
-- „Es gibt nur einen Ausweg“, sagt ihm eine Stimme,
Die er hört, auch mit Schutz auf dem Schießstand.
Die Stimme kam aus Kabul nach Nordfriesland.
-- Und so nimmt er sein Sturmgewehr,
-- Salutiert vor der Fahne
-- Und steckt sich den Lauf in den Mund. Dann läutet zuhause die Tür.
-- Zwei ernst blickende Soldaten wünschen Beileid.
Dann bellt draußen ein Hund.

(Refrain) 

DRITTE STROPHE
Der kleine Bruder ist zurück, er ist Mamas Liebster.
Sie sagt: „Bitte, bleib bei mir“ und er blieb da,
Wohnt im kleinen Haus, damit nichts mehr passiert.
Schreibtischdienst, ist hier stationiert.
War drei Jahre in Kundus, er spürt nur Leere.
Alte Freunde wollen quatschen, doch keiner will reden.
Alle wollen aus dem Dorf weg, wollen zur Party fahren,
-- Doch er bleibt für immer in Afghanistan.
Über dem Dach der Kaserne sind die selben Sterne,
ob in Deutschland oder in der Ferne.
Beim auf den Bus warten, gleich vor Mutters Garten
Jagen zwei dumme Glatzen einen Schwarzen.
Der Kleine hat Courage, der andere eine Tonfa.
Auch das arme reiche Deutschland produziert paar Monster.
Die lokale Zeitung geht dem auf den Grund.
Die Armee verleiht ein Kreuz,

Dann bellt draußen ein Hund.

Die Mutter steht allein vor der Kaserne,
Und sie fragt: „Was habt ihr mit meinen Jungs gemacht?“
Keiner hat Verantwortung, kann ihr sagen, wo sie starben.
Niemand hat sie umgebracht.
Die Mutter steht vorm Admiral, blickt auf die Orden.
So viele bunte Stecker kriegt man fürs Morden.
Dann nimmt sie die drei Kreuze:
Ihr Mann, ihre Söhne, ein Captain, zwei Leutnants.

Und macht ihre drei Kreuze,
Sie macht ihre drei Kreuze,
Drei Kreuze für Deutschland.

English Translation

Three crosses for Germany

FIRST VERSE
The father’s a captain, he’s in the Navy,
A great soldier with an unmoving face.
He commands his ship and also his family,
His uniform is always impeccable, he never shows his love.
He never shows a weakness, ‘cause he must command.
He was not sick a single day for work, ‘cause he can never be absent.
When the father preaches, his God is discipline.
The wind seems to pull him along.
They wait for the ship with him.
His two sons grew up so fast.
His wedding photo shows his only smile. His only laugh????
His warship must head to the Persian Gulf.
At night a man goes overboard, the search in vain.
No casket comes home, only a cross on a ribbon.
Somewhere his dead body sinks to the bottom.
The little cross, it weighs very little,
It weights so little in mother’s hand.
Then a dog barks outside. (Chorus)
There’s a house on the sea, a little house on the sea,
With mother, father and two sons and she really loves them,
And a Labrador and a minivan.
And in the kitchen you see the mother waiting.
There’s a house on the sea, a little house on the sea,
With mother, father and two sons and she really loves them,
And a Labrador and a minivan.
For years now you see the mother waiting.
SECOND VERSE
The big brother returns,
Guns crack in his head,
And his comrades, they scream his name.
And when he dreams he sees the streets
In brownish colors, lined with Iraqis.
And he knows, the bombs, the bombs,
They wait for his comrades,
The guys that died there.
One lost both his arms, And he couldn’t do anything and that is the worst.
“There’s only one way out,” says a voice to him,
One he hears, even with protection at the firing range.
The voice came from Kabul to Nordfriesland1.
And so he takes his assault rifle,
Salutes the flag
And sticks the muzzle in his mouth.
Then at home there’s a ring at the door.
Two serious-looking soldiers express their condolences.
Then a dog barks outside.
(Chorus)
THIRD VERSE
The little brother is back, he’s mama’s favorite.
She says “please, stay here with me” and he stayed there,
Lives in the little house, so that nothing else happens.
Desk work, he’s stationed here.
Spent three years in Kundus, he only feels emptiness.
Old friends want to chat, but nobody wants to talk.
Everyone wants out of that small town, want to head to a party,
But he will stay in Afghanistan forever.
Over the roof of the barracks are the same stars,
Whether in Germany or in the distance.
When he was waiting for the bus, right in front of mom’s yard,
Two dumb skinheads chase a black guy.
The little one has courage, the other a baseball bat.
Even poor, rich Germany produces a few monsters.
The local paper gets to the bottom of it.
The army awards a cross,
Then a dog barks outside.
The mother stands alone in front of the barracks,
And she asks “what did you do with my boys?”
Nobody is in charge, can tell her where they died.
Nobody killed them.
The mother stands in front of the admiral, looks at his medals.
So many colorful pins is what you get for murder.
Then she takes the three crosses:
Her husband, her sons, a captain, two lieutenants.
And she crosses herself three times,
She crosses herself three times,
Three crosses for Germany.
1A region in the German state of Schleswig-Holstein, bordering Denmark and the North Sea.

Peter Fox Instrumental -- zum Ueben!

For PRACTICE!



Tuesday, November 20, 2012

SKANDAL bei den Wise Guys (Gott sei Dank)

 SPIEGEL ONLINE:  HIER DIE GANZE ARTIKEL

Sind die Wise Guys zu der dunklen Seite gewandert?
(Have the Wise Guys turned over to the dark side?) 
So scheint es in Neuseeland, als ihr Lied RELATIV, für eine Stufungsprüfung benutzt war.
(That's how it might seem in New Zealand, after 16-17 year old students across the country were asked to interpret their song RELATIV, on a German exam.   Some left the exam in tears; other laughed in amazement.  Teachers themselves were perplexed as to how the song should be interpreted.)

Da haben einige Schüler in Neuseeland (liegt neben Australien) aber etwas gehörig missverstanden: Nicht die provokanten Texte von deutschen Musik-Exporten wie Rammstein gelten hier als anstößig (offensive), sondern ausgerechnet ein Lied der familienfreundlichen Gruppe Wise Guys wurde in einer Deutschprüfung zum Problem.
  
A-cappella-Formation Wise Guys: "Wir brauchen 'nen Skandal"

 Bei einem landesweiten Test zum Erwerb eines deutschen Sprachzertifikats bekamen die Schüler die Aufgabe gestellt, den Liedtext des Songs "Relativ" der Kölner Band zu interpretieren. (The assignment, shared country-wide for the completion of a German Speaking Diploma, was to interpret the song.)  Viel zu sexy, urteilten danach die 16 bis 17 Jahre alten Schüler, auch die Lehrer waren angeblich entsetzt (allegedly appalled). Im Lied heißt es unter anderem: "Du bist netter als mein Nachbar. Und ich nehme an, im Bett wär mit dir relativ viel machbar." Das war offenbar schon zu viel für die Ohren der Schüler. Einige seien so perplex gewesen, dass sie unter Tränen die Prüfung verlassen mussten. Andere hätten nur ungläubig gelacht, berichtete ein neuseeländisches Nachrichtenportal.

Der Song sei auf Grund seiner sexuellen Anspielungen und schwer verständlichen Wortspiele für die Schüler ungeeignet und völlig unangemessen gewesen, sagte ein Deutschlehrer der Website stuff.co.nz. Er und seine Kollegen seien darauf nicht vorbereitet gewesen. Auch nach mehrmaligem Hören sei es schwierig zu erläutern, worum es in dem Lied gehe.

Vielleicht die Beschreibung einer Striptease-Tänzerin
 
An anderer Stelle heißt es: "Es ist relativ gigantisch, wie du manchmal strahlen kannst / Mir wird relativ heiß, wenn ich sehe, wie du tanzt." Daraufhin seien einige Schüler der Meinung gewesen, es müsse sich hier um die Beschreibung einer Striptease-Tänzerin handeln. Ein Lehrer sagte dem Bericht zufolge, die Aufnahme habe sich außerdem angehört, als sei sie in einem Goldfischglas produziert worden.

Richard Thornton, stellvertretender Vorsitzender der zuständigen Schulbehörde in Neuseeland, verteidigte die Auswahl des Lieds. (Selection of the song was defended by the chairman of the New Zealand School Board who was responsible for the choice.)   Es sei ausgesucht worden, weil es darin um gesellschaftlich relevante Themen gehe, die auch Schüler interessierten. (We selected it, because it contains societal themes which also interest the pupils.)   "Die Aufnahmen sind professionell gemacht und die Texte klar zu verstehen", sagt Thornton.  Alles sei korrekt abgelaufen.  (The recordings are all made very professionally and the text is clear to understand.  Everything ran just as it should have.

Die Wise Guys zeigen sich von dem Rummel in Neuseeland verblüfft: "Ich hatte mit dem Songtext nicht die Absicht, Schülern in Neuseeland die Tränen in die Augen zu treiben" sagte Sänger und Texter Daniel Dickopf SPIEGEL ONLINE. ("It wasn't my objective when writing the song, to bring the pupils in New Zealand to tears," said singer and songwriter Daniel Dickopf. )  

Der Song sei bereits vor vier Jahren auf dem Album "Frei!" erschienen und auf Konzerten sehr beliebt. Noch nie habe sich jemand über zu explizite Texte der Vokal-Pop-Gruppe beschwert.  (Never had the vocal-pop-group been burdened with the tag of being too explicit.)
Die Idee zum Lied kam Dickopf während einer Unterhaltung, in der oft das Wort "relativ" benutzt wurde. (The idea for the song came to Dickopf during a conversation about how often the word "relativ" is used.)  Dies werde im Song auf die Schippe genommen. Um Sex geht es in dem Lied nur am Rande.  (Along the edges of the song there are traces of sex.)  "Als ich das alles gehört habe, musste ich aber schon etwas grinsen", sagte Dickopf.  (As I heard about the incident, I had to grin a bit, said Dickopf.)  Die Gruppe, die unter anderem schon den Titelsong für den evangelischen Kirchentag gesungen hat, ist bisher weniger für ein provokantes Image bekannt.
Im Gegenteil: Die Musiktexte der Kölner Wise Guys werden regelmäßig von Deutschlehrern im Unterricht verwendet, das Goethe-Institut schickte das Quintett im Jahr 2002 sogar auf eine Nordamerika-Tour. "Wenn es Kritik gibt, dann hieß es bisher immer, unsere Lieder seien zu lieb und zu harmlos", sagte Dickopf.  ("If we are ever criticized, until now it's been because our songs are too sweet and harmless," said Dickopf.)

Über ihren Nimbus als Chorknaben verfasste der Sänger sogar ein eigenes Lied. Darin heißt es: "Wir haben leider nix von Rambo, Rammstein oder Ballermann / Sind noch nicht mal böse Onkels, nur die Jungs von nebenan (...) Wir brauchen 'nen Skandal, brutal, 'ne Schlagzeile in 'Bild' wär' optimal." --  >  Immerhin, das mit der Schlagzeile hat mit einiger Verspätung nun endlich geklappt.

(The Wise Guys finally got the scandal they seem to be seeking, according to the song text in another of their songs:  Unfortunately we're nothing like Rambo, Rammstein, or Ballermann; we're not even angry uncles; just dudes from next door...we need a scandal, something brutal, a headline in the --scandal rag-- BILD  [Picture] would be optimum.")

jon/dpa    Casual translations provided by blogger.

2014 England requires L2 Instruction in Elementary School

England to require foreign language instruction
Beginning in 2014, all primary schools in England will offer at least one foreign language option for students ages 7 to 11 (Grades 2-6) .

Potential choices include French, German, Spanish, Italian, Mandarin, Latin and ancient Greek. 

Officials hope earlier exposure to language education will result in more students learning classical languages, which can boost students' knowledge of vocabulary and grammar.

The Telegraph (London)

Hör Deine Großeltern zu! "Legacy" Projekt


  Legacy Project Homepage
Spacer
Listen to a Life Contest
Legacy Project

STUDENTS TRAVEL TIME TO LEARN FROM THE PAST
AND SEND A MESSAGE INTO THE FUTURE 



The Legacy Project and annual Listen to a Life Essay Contest help you TRAVEL TIME and change lives.

The 13th annual Listen to a Life Contest runs to March 22, 2013. Travel through time as you interview an older adult about their life experiences – you may be surprised by what you learn. Then, submit a 300-word story to send a message around the world and into the future. All winning essays become part of the Legacy Project's online Legacy Library, recording life wisdom that can make the world and our future a little bit better.

When you really listen to a life, you have an opportunity to discover timeless insights and ideas. They may be big or small, but they're always valuable.

One Grand Prize Timeless Award winner receives a Lenovo ThinkCentre computer – because computers are amazing tools for helping us create, record, and share ideas – and a keepsake timepiece from Expressions of Time.

10 Legacy Award winners also receive a keepsake timepiece from Expressions of Time. And all winners receive a framed award certificate and an autographed copy of Dream, an award-winning bestseller about time, legacies, and dreams across a lifetime.

This year, we'll be featuring selected stories as they come in – even before winners are chosen! – to recognize as many entrants as possible. A story you share can change a life!


FIND OUT MORE HERE!   

Filmmaking in Germany

 From Germany Info...German Missions in the United States    Written by journalist and author Sabine Pahlke-Grygier.   Translated by Jonathan Uhlaner

Germany is a country of film legends.
 
In the 1920s, Berlin's famed Babelsberg studios was one of Hollywood's top competitors. It was also a laboratory for a new form of high art where Fritz Lang crafted the vivid dystopia of Metropolis and Marlene Dietrich melted hearts with a bat of her lashes in The Blue Angel.
 A scene from Fritz Lang's "Metropolis" (© Courtesy of Kino International)
Today, a new generation of filmmakers is winning international acclaim with smart takes on tough topics. In 2007, Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck's spy thriller The Lives of Others snagged an Oscar for Best Foreign Film and showed the world that German films can keep international audiences gripping their popcorn.

Films “Made in Germany” achieve international recognition and win some of the top prizes. It has, however, been a long and winding road. The fact that the film industry had such a difficult time for quite a few decades can also be put down to Germany’s history.

Films “Made in Germany” achieve international recognition and win some of the top prizes. It has, however, been a long and winding road. The fact that the film industry had such a difficult time for quite a few decades can also be put down to Germany’s history.

When moving pictures started to take their first steps around 1900 and filmmaking pioneers were in a neck-and-neck race to exploit the best technical and aesthetic assets of this new medium, German producers led the field. At the legendary Babelsberg Studios, Europe’s first large-scale film studios set up in 1912, directors like Fritz Lang and Friedrich Wilhelm Murnau made film history.

Then the Nazis came to power. Many creative film people had to flee the country, the war broke out and the division of Germany was the final blow – the result was a harsh void which took the German filmmaking scene decades to recover from. Film production did in fact continue after 1945, but German films did not stand a chance on the international film-making scene that in the meantime had been taken over by the major Hollywood studios. The only people to gain any attention at all were the West German “auteur” directors of the 1960s and 1970s like Rainer Werner Fassbinder, Wim Wenders or Volker Schlöndorff.

A new awakening after reunification

After reunification a jolt went through the sector. This was evident both in the content of the films as well as in the industry’s structures. Contemporary subject matter like the new political situation and the culture clash between East and West drew people into the cinemas in their droves and aroused international interest, too. In 2003 the German Film Academy was founded. At the same time attention was focused on new talent. A new prize came into being for new, young filmmakers called the “First Steps Award” and at the Berlinale film festival the newcomers were also assigned their own section called “Perspective Deutsches Kino” (Prospects for German Cinema). The number of film-goers watching German films and co-productions increased continuously. In 2009 there was rejoicing in the sector – over 212 new German film releases, 14 of which attracted audiences of over a million.

International prizes were won like Canne’s Golden Palm for The White Ribbon, the Golden Globe for Waltz with Bashir, Venice’s Golden Lion for Lebanon, and at the Berlinale the special jury prize for Soul Kitchen and a Silver Bear for Everyone Else. Over the last few years German productions have been nominated four times for an Oscar in the “Best Foreign Language Film” category. Victory was theirs twice with Die Fälscher (The Counterfeiters) in 2008 and Das Leben der anderen (The Lives of Others) in 2007.
Ulrich Mühe portrays Stasi captain Gerd Wiesler in "The Lives of Others." (© picture alliance / Mary Evans Pi)

Cinema, television and film funding

The 2010 film year with its 180 releases of German productions and co-productions did not go quite so well. This may well have been due to natural fluctuations within the industry, but this development immediately triggered the old, ever recurrent discussion on the dependency between film and TV. For over 40 years now hardly any film has been made in Germany without the financial involvement of TV channels. The debate on whether television has too much influence on the dramatic or the aesthetic quality is equally as old – inferring that films are produced that are too small for the big screen. TV editors who know that big productions like Das Boot (The Boat) would never have been made without their involvement reject this. Even successful producers like Stefan Arndt (Good bye, Lenin!) express their doubts that television is bad for the cinema film and the cause of box-office flops. “What I mean to say is that maybe some German films are simply just not good enough,” he says in a discussion at the German Film Academy. “The films are not unique enough, they are not exciting enough, they are simply not mind-boggling enough.”

If “larger than life” cinema, as the head of the German Film Academy, Alfred Holighaus, calls it, is to be made in Germany at all, it is going to take more than just the funding by the television stations. Even successful producers like Bernd Eichinger (Perfume, The Downfall), Regina Ziegler (Henry of Navarre), Detlef Buck (Wir können auch anders, Same Same but different) or the longstanding director of the Bavaria Studios, Günter Rohrbach (Stalingrad, Anonyma – A Woman in Berlin) were and still are dependent on public funding. This means that every project is accompanied by a battle for the funding, which is granted annually by the federal government and the regional governments of the individual states. Even the biggest and the oldest studios, Babelsberg in Berlin and Bavaria in Munich, would not be able to survive without these subsidies.

Young and up-and coming talent – “Welcome back to reality”
 
The struggle for the funds that are available for the various phases of film-making, be it screenwriting or marketing, is often long and drawn out, because their allocation, depending on the institution, is often linked with certain conditions. This makes calculating the films’ budgets quite difficult. New, young filmmakers often get lost in this “jungle.” And despite the fact that the training of young filmmakers in Germany, with its five film schools and all the post-graduate and specialist courses available at various universities and colleges, has “improved immensely,” as Andrea Hohnen, the organizer of the First Steps Award, puts it, there really are not that many who manage to really make it in the film business on a long-term basis.

Every year about 60 young directors, armed with their degrees from the film schools and universities, pour onto the market. According to Alfred Holighaus it easier for them to make their first film than their second. “When you make your first film in Germany you are allowed to enjoy the privilege of being a bit crazy. These people are hot and as filmmakers they can exploit themselves to the hilt. Even the actors, the whole production team, are modest in their demands and tolerant, yet highly ambitious.

The first thing the filmmakers usually have to do is pay off the debts incurred making their debut film, often with the help of the prize money they won in the First Steps Award competition. Then, however, they have to face the tribulations of everyday life. Not everybody is able to stand the pressure of having to be creative, of having to win over funding bodies and TV stations and the ever-present insecurity. It really is often like that, as was the case with Axel Melzener, a screenwriting graduate of the Baden-Württemberg Film Academy in Ludwigsburg. Of the ten young people who graduated with him, only three managed to continue working in the film sector, “The others either gave up, went on to study psychology or even became nurses,” he says. “Welcome back to reality.”

Written by journalist and author Sabine Pahlke-Grygier.

HERE YOU'LL FIND A PARTIAL LIST OF RECENT GERMAN FILMS ON DVD 
(20 German films are listed alphabetically.)

LA Autoschau: BMW; Benz; Porsche haben neue Wagen

The North American debut of the BMW i8 Spyder hybrid roadster concept, the world debut of the Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Black Series, and another hotly-rumored world debut slated from Porsche as well as the North American debut of the 911 Carrera 4 are highly anticipated.

la auto show_lrThe Los Angeles Auto Show confirmed on November 12, 2012 that nearly 50 vehicles will debut at the show Nov. 28-29 when it opens for Press Days and Nov. 30-Dec. 9 for the public. 

Just two weeks away, the show will feature world debuts ranging from electric vehicles to performance and luxury designs from a global array of the world’s top automakers. 
The number of debuts and strong representation from the world’s key auto manufacturing regions underscore both the rebounding strength of the industry as well as the importance of the Show as a launch venue.

Let's stay tuned!


Historic Day in German History: November 9th

 Germany.Info reports:

NOVEMBER 9TH HISTORICAL

Learn (review details about) what happened on November 9th in 1918, 1938, and 1989.

North Rhine-Westphalia at the International Emmys 2012

German World   November 16, 2012 by GW Editorial Staff  

During the Emmy World Television Festival from November 17 to 19, the International Academy of Television Arts and Sciences will be presenting the International Emmys to the world’s best TV programs.  This year, again more than 700 TV-experts from 50 different countries are expected for the festival (17.-18.11.) and the awards ceremony (19.11.) in New York.
Host of the event is the International Academy of Television Arts & Sciences with its president and CEO, Mr. Bruce Paisner.
Since 2009, Germany’s leading TV location, the State of North Rhine-Westphalia has had a prominent presence at the annual TV festival with a star-studded delegation of television-makers. This year’s delegation includes among others: 
  • North Rhine-Westphalian producers Ms. Bettina Brokemper (Heimatfilm, “Melancholia”), 
  • International Emmy Award Winner Mr. Leopold Hoesch (Broadview), 
  • Mr. Daniel Hetzer (action concept), 
  • Mr. Michael Souvignier (Zeitsprung)
  • Mr. Sam Davis (Rowboat), 
  • Ms. Claudia Michelsen 
  • Mr. Wotan Wilke Möhring,
  • Mr. Joko Winterscheidtl, TV-presenter
  • Mr. Klaas Heufer-Umlauf, TV-presenter.
After the festival and awards ceremony, another highlight awaits German and international representatives of
TV and Media on November 20: The traditional “NRW-Rendezvous” Lunch in the Hearst Tower, where... representatives of TV and Media will meet for a lunchtime networking and brainstorming session....
With 53,000 media and communications companies, approx. 380,000 employees and annual sales of 126 billion Euros, the State of North Rhine-Westphalia has developed into a leading media and creative location -- where an attractive cultural landscape ensures a high quality of life as well as productive cross-links between media, art and culture. 
Bertelsmann and Deutsche Telekom, two global players based in NRW, lead the ranking of the most influential media corporations. The city of Cologne, the number one television location, is home to WDR, Europe’s largest public-law broadcasting company, RTL, Germany’s most successful private broadcasting station, and eight of the ten most important TV producers. 
> One out of three minutes of TV airtime in Germany is produced in NRW. (Source: Hans Wolters International Inc.)

Saturday, November 17, 2012

BEETHOVEN --BBC's Mark Steel



Cool!

Aus Schottland, ein deutscher Blogger

Worüber?  (About what?)   Hier:  über "Fake tan".... Mädels in Schottland sind nicht dünkel genug...



Findet ihr diesen Blogger interessant?  Und sein Theme?

Willkommen in Deutschland

Spielen wir diese Fotos als wir zu Karneval essen?




Hermann Hesse liest sein Gedicht: STUFEN



Worüber geht das Gedicht?
Bei Step Into German/ Facebook   HIER   kann man Preise gewinnen . . .

Wie die Maschinen in Deutschland den Rasen mähen können


Heute ist mein Tag

 Sei Dankbar! 

Text & Sprache von Alfred R. Stielau-Pallas, mit wunderschönen Bildern und inspierierende Musik von Thomas Ihl.



Öffnen wir heute die Schatztruhe!  (Let's open the treasure chest today...)

eine leuchtende Energieperle  (an illuminated pearl of energy)

Ich kann mir meine eigenen Vorstellungen davon machen wie die Welt ist, wie sie sein wird.

Ich kann selbst entscheiden, wie ich diesen Tag verbringen werde.

Ich kann ihn als letzten Tag meiner Vergangenheit, order gleichzeitig als ersten Tag meiner Zukunft ansehen. 

Was für ein Glückstag mein Tag geworden ist.

No Internment Camps in RI, but POW Camps.

Following up on Arndt Peltner's article:

--  Did you know that there were 3 German POW Camps right here in RI? --  on the Island of Jamestown?  OK.  These camps actually graduated their inmates.   Here's a clip from the tail end of an article from 10/08/05 on the cover of the Jamestown Free Press:

POW camps little-known part of island legacy

By Geoff Campbell

North Kingstown resident, Walter Schroder, offers a unique perspective on the subject.  He was a Jamestown resident for more than three decades following the war, and wrote “Stars and Swastikas: The Boy Who Wore Two Uniforms,” detailing his birth and childhood in Rhode Island and his family’s subsequent return to Germany.

As a 15-year-old German Army anti-aircraft crewmember, Schroder was captured, served time in a British-run German POW camp in Belgium, enlisted and trained in the U.S. Army, and served in the occupying force in his father’s homeland. 

Later, in a further book, “Defenses of Narragansett Bay in World War II,” Schroder offers important context:  “During World War II, close to 370,000 German prisoners of war were interned in 378 camps across America.”  One of the aims of the re-education programs, according to Schroder, was to offset the ongoing brutal treatment in German POW camps of anti-Nazi prisoners by their pro-Nazi colleagues – often officers. The re-education sought to give voice and structure to prisoners with opposing views.

Dan Stets’ article, “The Spirit of Kearney” appeared in the Providence Journal on July 18, 1982. Stets explained that prisoners sent to Ft. Kearney “were hand picked according to two criteria: intelligence and hostility toward the Nazis.”

“Almost all had served in Hitler’s army against their will,” Stets wrote.

Jamestowner Delores Christman, 15 at the time, remembers the POW trucks going up and down Southwest Avenue to and from Ft. Getty. “They would wave at us and we would wave at them,” she said.

In a 2008 article for Weider History Group’s bi-weekly magazine, “WWII,” Ronald Bailey noted that The Factory combined 85 exceptional German POWs – “former editors, professors, writers and linguists” and their U.S. captors – distinguished professionals and noted civilian educators from Brown and Harvard.  It was here, Bailey contended, that this unique collective oversaw a complex and ever-evolving plan for giving democracy the best chance of gaining a foothold in postwar Germany.

At The Factory, Bailey wrote, “they worked to produce, edit or review books, newspapers, films, in order to re-educate their countrymen interned in...POW camps across the United States.”
Alcina Blair remembers the Carr School that used to occupy the site where McQuade’s Market now sits. She recalls sitting with her brother on the corner of Southwest Avenue, watching the Army repair the road after the heavy equipment that brought in the big guns during the war had torn it up.
“We used to play in the field by the school” for as long as the daylight would permit, she said.
It was, she added, “a simple life.”

Bailey describes The Factory as “the world’s most relaxed prison camp. Ft. Kearney had no armed guards or guard towers. The Germans would travel from there in Army trucks on the ferry to Jamestown, R.I. to pick up supplies, socializing with passengers who had no idea that they were chatting with POWs.”

One way in which the Ft. Kearney group was able to influence their imprisoned colleagues was a regularly published newspaper, “Der Ruf” (The Call).  “Der Ruf” eventually found committed readers in 140 of the U.S. camps, according to Stets.

According to Bailey, “The Ft. Kearney experiment proved so successful that new schools were created at Fort Getty and Ft. Wetherill...training administrative personnel at Getty and policemen at Wetherill.”

Schroder contends that all three schools were part of the original plan.  He is quick to point out that the prisoners at Fts. Getty and Wetherill were “not allowed to walk around town.”  One night, Blair recalled, two prisoners, who were lost, appeared on the front porch of their Windsor St. home.
“My mother and father were concerned and called the chief of police who came and got them,” she said. “They were not escaping. They'd just been lost.”

“The Historic and Architectural Resources of Jamestown,” published by the Jamestown Philomenian Library, says that, “Groups of German POWs passed through the school every 60 days. The last class graduated in December 1945. In all, 1,166 German prisoners completed the schools at Ft. Getty and Ft. Wetherill.”

The Newport Daily News of Sept. 21, 1945 featured an article titled, “War Dept. Tells Facts of Prisoner Schools – Secret Operations at Bay Forts Bared to the Press.”

Remarkably, the U.S. War Department’s detailed description of the plan that followed fully revealed the previously top-secret effort to extend democratic values to a formerly fascist and vanquished enemy.

It would appear that Jamestown, host to this remarkable experiment but relatively unchanged by the experience, went back to living – as Alcina Blair called it – “a simple life.”
 

Arndt Peltner: German Internment Camps

THE ATLANTIC TIMES (a monthly newsletter from Germany) 

 The following article is from our May 2007 issue.

Unforgettable Injustice During World War II, the U.S. government detained Americans whose roots derived from "enemy countries." Now, former German detainees are about to get an apology, too - By Arndt Peltner

"When the war broke out, all men had to register with the military and I still have my card; I was number 1120. They asked me, why I didn't want to fight against Germany. I said, my brother is still there, my mother is still there, I still have all my relatives over there." - Max Ebel

Max Ebel, 88, was born in Speyer, Germany. He left home in May 1937 after being threatened and beaten because he refused to join the Hitler Youth. His father, Max Ebel Sr., a naturalized American citizen who emigrated in 1929 after divorcing his mother, urged him to come live with him. The young boy agreed and arrived in New York City on May 28, 1937, after 10 days at sea.

His father had settled in Boston as a cabinet-maker and Ebel started to work for him. He was enjoying his new life in the big city to the fullest. However, when the war in Europe began, things started to change for German nationals living in the U.S. Even though every foreigner living in America had to register in 1940, these measures were really intended for Germans, the Japanese and the Italians.

Immigrants were able to lead normal lives until 1941. They didn't know that FBI chief, J. Edgar Hoover, already had plans on his desk to intern German, Japanese and Italian natives he deemed dangerous.

When Japan attacked Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941, the shocked American public called for revenge. The next day, President Franklin D. Roosevelt addressed the U.S. Congress, calling the attack an act of war. Roosevelt declared war on Japan.

Immediately, the president issued presidential proclamations requiring all Japanese, Germans and Italians to register, deeming them "enemy aliens" and restricting their travel and personal property rights.

The president invoked the Alien Enemies Act of 1798 specifying that citizens of enemy nations can be "apprehended, restrained, secured and removed" due to a declared war or an attempted or threatened invasion of the U.S.

The FBI pulled out its internment plan. Thousands of German, Japanese and Italian nationals, especially in the coastal cities, were arrested overnight, despite the fact that Germany and the U.S. did not declare war on each other until Dec. 11.

They were held in police stations, military barracks, any place available. The Department of Justice (DOJ), working with the War Department, established extensive restricted zones in coastal areas from which thousands of "enemy aliens" had to move.

In February 1942, the president issued the well-known Executive Order 9066 which led to more than 100,000 West Coast Japanese and Japanese-Americans being relocated and placed in War Relocation Authority (WRA) camps. The DOJ and the U.S. Army established a system of internment camps across the U.S. to hold enemy alien internees and some of their families, including American-born children.

Later, over 6,000 German and Japanese natives were picked up in 18 Latin American countries and they, too, were interned. At least 2,600 Germans and their families were used for prisoner exchange with Germany, a reason some allege for the internment of thousands.

Ebel and his father were arrested in September 1942. An American citizen, Max Ebel Sr. could not be interned but officials sought to exclude him from coastal areas.

After a lengthy court battle, the military finally withdrew its' order concerning Max Ebel Sr. His son was not so lucky. Still a German citizen, he became one of 11,000 Germans living in the Americas who were arrested and interned, far from their homes during World War II.

Ebel spent four months in a Boston detention facility, during which time he had a brief hearing. The U.S. Attorney and FBI agents presented their "evidence." He was not allowed to question the proceedings or have counsel. Ebel was then sent to Ellis Island (ironically used for internment longer than any other facility during WWII), followed by military camps in Maryland and Tennessee before arriving by train in Bismarck, North Dakota.

Fort Lincoln was the final destination for many interned Germans. Over the winter, desperate to escape barbed wire, he worked on the cold North Dakota plains for the local railroad. Later, still an internee, he was drafted into the U.S. Army. He flunked his physical, was granted a rehearing and on parole until November 1945. The rehearing board, recommending release, appeared mystified as to why he had ever been interned.

Not bitterly but emotionally, Ebel describes his two-year incarceration as an injustice. Fort Lincoln "is hell," he wrote in a little diary he kept during his internment. Like other interns, he hadn't been a Nazi or a spy. He came to the U.S. to find a new home, freedom and peace.

A troubling aspect for Ebel was that he never knew why he was arrested and, later, why he was released. Even while becoming a U.S. citizen in the early 1950s, government officials noted his internment but never gave him access to his files.

Ebel's story is only one of many similar injustices during the war years. Born in the United States, Arthur Jacobs is a bitter man today over what happened to him and his family. The FBI deemed his father, Lambert Dietrich Jacobs, dangerous simply because he was German. In 1944, they arrested not only him but also his entire family and sent them to a camp in Crystal City, Texas, about 100 miles south of San Antonio.

Father and son were surprised to find German and Japanese citizens from Latin America there as well. The internment didn't end with the capitulation of Germany and Japan. President Harry Truman required a review of the cases of those still interned in anticipation of their deportation. Hundreds of Germans were held at Ellis Island, many fighting deportation until 1948.

Like thousands of Germans used for exchanges before them, the deportees were sent to Germany, a country that was no longer their home. For Jacobs and others like him, it never had been a home, yet he and other U.S. citizens were sent to Germany, along with their families where they faced unimaginably harsh conditions.

When Karen Ebel learned of the two-year internment of her father, she wondered what he had done and why he never talked about those years. Slowly he opened up, telling his daughter about the events that had changed his life.

The lawyer, decided to fight for her father's rights and seek justice. While the injustices committed against Japanese and Italians have been recognized, those committed against German Americans and those living in Latin America have not.

Yet in 1988, with the passage of the Civil Liberties Act, President Ronald Reagan apologized to and compensated only the thousands of Japanese-Americans who were interned in DOJ and WRA camps.

In 1999, the U.S. settled a class action lawsuit granting $5,000 and a presidential apology to Japanese citizens living in Latin America.

In 2000, the Wartime Violations of Italian American Civil Liberties Act recognized the government's wrongful denial of Italian American civil liberties.

Congress passed a $38 million bill in 2006 to preserve all facilities where Japanese were held, facilities which the National Park Service has already deemed national historic landmarks.

In August 2001, the Wartime Treatment Study Act was finally introduced. It would create an independent commission to investigate the internment of German Americans and those living in Latin America, among others, during World War II. The bill, repeatedly blocked by an anonymous Republican senator, was reintroduced in February. On April 12, the Senate Judiciary Committee recommended approval.

Karen Ebel, who recently formed the German American Internee Coalition to represent former German internees and their families, hopes this time it will pass. "Passage is long overdue," she says. "Too many have died without government acknowledgment of their suffering. Those remaining have waited long enough. There is much to be learned from their stories as we weigh freedom and security concerns today."

Ebel sits in the kitchen of his daughter's home in New Hampshire, his voice breaking. "I have been so happy that Karen is doing this," he says. "It's emotional...this happened and the recognition from America has to be made. I don't talk much about it but it's there in the back of my head. I want to forget but I can't."

- Arndt Peltner is a freelance correspondent and producer at Radio Goethe in San Francisco. 

Blogger Adam Fletcher's "Top 10 Ways to Become German"


#1  PUT ON YOUR LITTLE HOUSE SHOES! 

So, here we are then my little Ausländer. Your first day as an aspiring German. You’ll have awaken in your bed, probably because it’s gotten light outside and you don’t have curtains (because curtains are evil and suggest you have something to hide).

Now, you’ll need to carefully make up your half of the bed (you will probably be sleeping in a double bed made up of two single mattresses and two single duvets). What it lacks in nocturnal romance, it more than makes up for in practicality (each makes his/her own side of the bed) the most prized of German possessions. 

Now, careful!  Don’t step off of the Bettvorleger yet, there is a very high chance that the floors will be ever so slightly colder than you expect! So cold you may go into some kind of morning shock. That’s why you need house shoes! They are requirements of Germanism.

I would like to be able to tell you why Germans are so in love with their house shoes, I’ve asked several but their answer is so incredibly unromantic, so sensible, practical and boring that my happy little barefoot brain has no idea where to store information of that nature and so just gives up committing it to memory. 

Actually, that these little house shoes prevent the outside dirt from creeping through the tidy German household is something Brits understand far less than do, for instance the Japanese.  OK.  There.  How very practical, indeed.  Is there hope after all?

 
   

#2  EAT A LONG BREAKFAST

Coming from England, I was very surprised to see how important the kitchen is to the German people. The English tend to treat it purely as a room of function, like the toilet, only with a fridge. You get in, do what you’ve got to do, get out. The living room is the heart of the home.

For the Germans, it’s a different story, they are happiest and spend the most time in their kitchens. It’s the most practical room in the house. You have a table, water, coffee, food, radio, serious, correct-posture-encouraging seating. They’ve correctly realised, if trouble does come calling, they’ll be best prepared for it by holing up in their kitchens.

German breakfasts are not meals, but elaborate feasts. If it’s a weekend, every square inch of the table will be smothered in an assortment of meats, cheeses, fruits, jams, spreads and other condiments. It’ll look like someone broke in and while hunting for valuables just tipped the contents of all the cupboards out onto the table.

The first time I experienced breakfast in a German WG (= Wohngemeinschaft, or dormitory) it lasted so long that I drifted off into a sort of breakfast coma and they had to wake me with some Nutella, which is a sort of chocolate strip you put on bread. I didn’t know you could legally combine chocolate and bread, it was quite a revelation. Now I just eat Nutella with everything, and slowly I’ve learnt to eat more and also slower, during the long drawn out German breakfasts. 

#3  BE PREPARED

So far, so good. Look at you, you’re up early, you’ve got your radio on, no doubt some Depeche Mode is blasting out, you’re eating a slow and ponderous German breakfast, you’re acclimatising very well, young Ausländer.

Now you need to enter the headspace of the Germans. If you want to be one, you need to think like one, which is a big task and we’ll cover it in more detail in later steps. But for now, start accepting the three central tenets of Germanism.  The three P’s. Planning, Preparation, Process.

Being a good German is about understanding the risks, insuring for what can be insured, preparing for what cannot. You are your own life’s project manager. Plan and prepare. Make spreadsheets, charts and lists. Think about what you’re doing each day and how you can make it more efficient.
Is it possible you arrange your shoe storage so that the most used items are nearer the top, reducing bending time? I don’t care if you’re 17, it’s taking you nearly a full minute to get your shoes on, buy a shoe horn! Optimise your processes!

Just because they call it spontaneity, doesn’t mean it can’t be scheduled. There’s a time and place for fun, and it’s to be pre-decided and marked in the calendar. All else is frivolous chaos. So sit down now and make a plan for the day, then the week, then the month.

Then book your holidays until 2017. -- To make it easier, just go to the same place. How about Mallorca? All the other Germans go there, there must be something to it.

  

#4  GET SOME INSURANCES  
    
Everyone knows it’s a jungle out there. Hence why we created the phrase. So, plucky Ausländer before you go out into the jungle and start swinging from its high branches, it’s wise you be sensibly insured. Germans, being imaginative people ran a little wild with the concept of sensibly insured.
Don’t be surprised if the Germans you meet all have personal insurance advisors.

My girlfriend communicates with her insurance advisor more often than I do with my mother. If someone invented insurance insurance, an insurance against not having the right insurance, we’d all be treated to the sight of 80 million people dying of happiness.

#5  DRESS SERIOUSLY

Plan made for the day? Insurances in place? Great. Good work!

Now it’s time to change out of your Schlumperklamotten and head outside to face the day head on. You’re going to need to get appropriately dressed.

*WARNING! AUSLÄNDER! WARNING!* Outside is this thing called nature, nature is fickle and not to be trusted!  It dances to its own illogical, changeable tune. Best dress on the safe side. You need – expensive outdoor clothing! After all, you’re going outdoors, it’s called outdoor clothing, therefore it must be necessary.

At all times, you should be dressed for a minimum of three seasons. Get some of those funky Jack Wolfskin shrousers, the trousers that zip off into shorts.

If there is even the slightest possibility you may at some point leave a pavement, be sure you are wearing high-quality hiking boots. The Germans consider anything else an act of ankle suicide.

Should you show your Ausländisch self and suddenly find yourself unprepared in the elements,  prepare for serious snickering in your direction.

#6  LEARN GERMAN!
 
Every nation has done things it should be embarrassed about. Dark acts in its history. The Germans are no exception. You know of what I talk – the German language.

In principle, it’s not that hard. It works in two stages. Learning words and learning the grammar. Learning words is fun, most are even similar to English thanks to our shared ancestry, you’ll zip along making great progress and really enjoying wrapping your tongue around such delights as Schwangerschaftsverhütungsmittel, Weltschmerz and Zeitgeist.

Then, confident at all the little snippets you’ve already accumulated, you’ll start learning the grammar, the putty that builds your mutterings into real, coherent German sentences. This is where you’ll start to feel cheated....

English, at least linguistically, has always been the biggest slut in the room. Giving and taking from other languages. Trying to make you like it. Keeping it simple. My pet theory is that the Germans, despite their committed efforts, were not as successful as the English in their world power plays and so the English language has always, historically, been forced like a bridge made of glue to ford whatever cultural divide lay between us and whoever we were conquering, sorry colonising this week, so we had to smooth down its rougher edges, which is a poetic way of saying, kick out all the hard bits.

English was forced to evolve in a way that German had not been. German retained the grammatical complexity of Old English.  Take genders as an example, present in Old English, still present in German, yet assigned utterly arbitrarily.  Sure, there are some sort of vague guidelines about how words end or that almost everything to do with time is der. That’ll help you with maybe 30 per cent of nouns. That still leaves 70 per cent that you’ll have to learn by heart so you can decline correctly.
(PRO TIP: never learn a noun without its article, going back later and adding them in is very time consuming and inefficient).  Without knowing the gender of the noun, you can’t accurately decline the endings of the sentences, nouns and adjectives or adverbs. Without it you’ll say very embarrassing things like "einer grosser Wasser", instead of "ein grosses wasser."  I know, cringeworthy.

Of course there are far harder languages to learn than German, that’s not my point. English also has its stupidities, like a staunch commitment to being unphonetic. The difference is that English was kind enough to be easy in the beginning, it ramps up slowly and encouragingly. German just plonks you down in front of a steep mountain, says “viel spass” and walks off as you begin your slow ascent.
When I first started learning the language, I was gently reminded by a friend that some of the smartest things ever written were written in this language. First you need only respect it, later you can learn to like it.  And you will.



  

#7  EARN YOURSELF [A FEW MORE] QUALIFICATIONS!
 
When I first moved here I was given the advice that “while in England, it’s he who drinks the most and doesn’t vomit on his shoes, that gets the girl.  Here it’s he who knows the most about philosophy that gets the girl”.  -- OK.  That might be a bit of an exaggeration.

But the Germans, on account of their excellent school system (at least in comparison to the English), and the extraordinarily long time they tend to study (now reducing as they’ve adopted the Bachelor/Masters system) are an intellectual bunch. As a result, they also tend to have a great number of qualifications.

Vanity always needs an audience, it’s no different with intellectual vanity. So the Germans needed to create situations in which they could gently remind other Germans how much more qualified they are than them. An outdated idea in English culture, where everything is on a first-name basis, I am Adam, he is John, it’s what in our heads that shows our qualifications and intelligence.

Here in Germany, it’s the letters before or after our full name, letters we use when addressing each other, for example Herr Dr or Frau Prof Dr.h.c Schmidt, none of this first name over-familiarity.  Even the humble doorbell offers an opportunity for neighbour one-upmanship, where academic qualifications can be listed.

You can expect occasional smirks and reassuring pats on the shoulder, when you tell them you only have a BA in Theatre Studies, as if they’ve a new found respect for the fact you’ve managed to dress yourself properly.


#8   OBEY THE LITTLE RED AMPELMÄNNCHEN!

I think the often exaggerated stereotype that Germans love to follow the rules all comes down to one little illuminated red man: Guardian and God of the crossing pedestrian.  To dare challenge his authority and step gingerly out into a completely empty road when he is still red, is to take great personal risk.

Not of getting run over, the road is completely empty after all. Bar being struck by an invisible car, you’re safe.

No, what you really risk is the scorn, the tutting and the shouts of “Halt!” from nearby Germans, who will now consider you an irresponsible, possibly suicidal, and certainly a social renegade (well-- especially if there are impressionable kiddies nearby).

Halt!  Await the GREEN Ampelmännchen.  Consider it an elaborate exercise in self-control. You’ll need all that self-control not to freak out and start shooting the first time you visit the Ausländerbehörde and find out they don’t --want to -- speak English.



  

#9  DRINK APFELSCHORLE!

Germans fear any beverage that doesn’t fizz. It brings them out in a cold sweat.

It’s a great comedic joy to live in a country where you can watch tourists and foreigners buying “classic” water, thinking that since for millions of years now “classic” water, you know, the kind that fallen from the sky since the dawn of time, was still, uncarbonated water, it would be the same here, right?

Oh no. Millions of years of water history have been conveniently forgotten. “Classic” means carbonated, of course. You big silly.


Learn to like it. If not, when visiting the homes of your new German friends, you’ll request tap water and they’ll look at you like you are some primitive savage they just found in the woods covered in a blanket of your own hair.

Related to this is Apfelsaftschorle. You know in movies when people go to therapy and then the therapist asks them to create a happy place. A safe, tranquil spot they can turn to when the world gets too big and scary. Usually it’s a beach, or a rocking chair on the front porch of an idyllic childhood home?

For Germans, that happy place is swimming naked in a lake of Apfelsaftschorle. Tired after a long day of stamping and form filling, confronted with a 15-page long restaurant menu, baffled by the burdens of choice, they always retreat to their happy place and order Apfelsaftschorle. It’s steady, reliable.

For more than a century Germans, smug with their discovery of fizzy water, all their abundant breweries producing fine beers and ales, they didn’t believe it could get any better. Then some bright spark tried adding a little apple juice to that fizzy water. Creating something equally refreshing, but 6 per cent more fun! It was a near riot.

People were not ready. It was almost too fun. An all-night discoparty for the tastebuds. Of course, it won’t taste like that to you, with your funny foreign pallet. Apfelsaftschorle will taste to you as it really is, a fractional improvement on water’s boring taste.

#10  EAT GERMAN FOOD! 

It’s hard to discuss German cuisine without mentioning Wurst, at which point you’ll feel like I’m smacking you about the head with the stereotype stick. So I won’t. Wurst is important, but I think more for what it represents than how it tastes.  Here, meat is the linchpin of every meal. Being a vegetarian here is probably about as much fun as being blind at the zoo.

The notable exception is Spargel Saison (asparagus season), where the country goes gaga as the almightly Spargel is being waved around everywhere, like a sort of culinary magic wand, which coincidentally it does rather resemble.  Almost every restaurant features Spargel in almost every course. 

In conclusion, German cuisine is to the world of food, what the band Eiffel 65 are to the history of popular music: present, but largely a footnote.


You are probably wondering how I wrote an entire entry about German food without mentioning that lumpy S word – Sauerkraut. Fear not, it deserves an entire entry of its own….. It's certainly present as a side dish to many a meal.  Would you have it any other way?  YUM!   Right?





















Maikranz Tanz Endszene: Im weißen Rößl am See


Der Film ist aus 1980.  Er ist nur lustig, und die Kostüme finde ich auch lustig!  Diese Endszene ist nur 14 Minuten lang.



Werden Oberkellner, Leopold, und Gastwirtin Josepha sich je verstehen?