Category Archive for: ‘German’

Bad German Words

Seven German words that sound bad, but aren’t

German and English derive from the same base language so they have a great many similarities. I always tell new students that they should seek to make connections between English and German but also other words – especially newer so-called

Relationships In German E1404894949183

Degrees of Friendship and Relationships in German

Because of Switzerland’s strict immigration laws it used to be when you asked non-Swiss why they were in Switzerland the answer would usually be one of two things: 1. work, 2. love. With the Schengen-Dublin agreement that changed and more

Restaurant

Ordering in German — Auswärts essen

Learning a new language takes a degree of humility. It often means starting from zero and learning things like the alphabet and counting again. Simple ideas can be a struggle to express in your new language and then when you

Hitze

Heiss, Hitze, Heizen – Words for heat in German

Summer has returned to Zurich and like in so much of the world today seemed to come right after winter, though this year most of us in Northern Switzerland were left wondering, what winter? Of course with summer come the

German Animal Expressions

Pig-dogs, Pony Farms, and Monkey Theaters – Expressions in German

When you get to know a language well enough you discover that no matter how boring your teachers may have made them out to be or how simply rediculous à la Eddy Izzard’s “Le singe est sur la branche” they

Toll Prima Geil

Supergeiler Artikel – Expressing enthusiasm and admiration in German

The other day my friend was walking her dog in Zurich when a man spray painting a wall along the Limmat yelled after her “geiler Arsch” (nice ass). She was shocked, and I’m surprised that the dog didn’t bite the

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Hin und Her – here and there, and the importance of direction in German

When people first start learning German, one of the basic things that is confusing for many is that there are three words for where, well kind of. We have wo – where (exact location), wohin – where to (direction away

Partizip I

The German Present Participle – Partizip I

Clarifying a Common Mistake Before We Start: For anyone who’s learned English, especially in North America, you probably remember hearing the definition of a verb being “the word ending in -ing.” That was definitely a simplification that put many of

Kaufen Vs. Einkaufen

Kaufen vs. Einkaufen — Shopping made easy

The holiday season is again upon us. For many that means parties (Partys), family (Familie), and shopping (shoppen?). I’ve question marked the word shoppen because it’s the idea I want to clarify in todays post. Students always ask me, “When

Wein Deutschlernen

Speaking about Wine in German — Vocabulary & Expressions

The wine boats (Weinschiffe) are back at Zurich’s Bürkliplatz for the 60th annual Expovina. This is Switzerland’s largest wine fair, a great place to try new wines, meet friends, and speak German. If you’re in Zurich, or the area, I

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Telephoning in German — What you need to know

[Ring, ring, ring. Click.] Marathon Sprachen. Langenegger am Apparat, guten Tag. Ah, ah, ah, … English?… Oh, yes, English is ok. … The above telephone conversation occurs on a regular basis even with people who have a B1 or higher

Oktoberfest E1383291477693

Oktoberfest Terminology and Songs

When many people think of Germany there are a few things that come to mind, but one of them is usually Oktoberfest. The world’s largest folk festival (Volksfest) and it’s been taking place since 1810 attracting over 6 million visitors.

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