The intellectual equivalent of a ham sandwich.

Posts tagged ‘german’

Attn: Ellen (8/16/17)

Front

Ellen321a

Back (apologies for my handwriting!)

Ellen321b

 

The text of the postcard is

Dear Ellen,

In my feeble attempt to learn some German via Duolingo, I am also learning that I don’t know much English. For example, today I am doing a lesson on ‘Genitive Case.’ I don’t know what that means, but I can only assume it’s language you’d use while visiting Geneva. Stuff like, “hey, nice watch!”

Sincerely,
DumbFunnery.com OR @DumbFunnery

Why am I doing this?

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Hallo Fliege

In this post I am going to attempt to use my fledgling German knowledge to express my hatred of a fly that is inside my house and does Top Gun style fly bys of the tower (my face) and I want to kill him but he never seems to land. Except for on my legs when I am eating.

 

Hallo Fliege,

Mein freund, du bist nicht gut. Und ich habe kein liebe für du.

Ich bin stark, und groß, aber du bist schmutzig und … um, nicht stark.

Hmmm. Ich spreche ein klein Deutsch so das ist schwer. Ich brauche … etwas.

Mit hass,

Mich

 

And now a translation to see how I’ve done. I can already tell you – not well. But let’s see it. I am lacking a vocabulary. You want me to say hello to a potato? I can do that. But to fully express my hatred for a fly? That’s beyond me.

 

Hello fly,

My friend, you're not good. And I have no love for you.

I am strong, and tall, but you are dirty and ... um, not strong.

Hmmm. I speak a small German so that is hard. I need something.

With hate,

Me

Czech, a Cryptographer’s Language

Recently my wife and I had the pleasure of visiting Prague, Czech Republic. It is a beautiful city that seems to have a mystical and unsettling charm that is amazing.

It also features a language that, I think, was created by an English speaking cryptographer.

 

Pants

Spanish – pantalones

German – hose

Czech – kalhoty

Hello

Spanish – hola

German – hallo

Czech – ahoj

Friend

Spanish – amigo

German – freund

Czech – přítel

Ok. Well.

I thought I would find a bunch of words that would illustrate that Czech was incredibly confusing to me and somehow more foreign than most languages. With Spanish, French, German and Italian I’ve seen or heard enough words/phrases that it doesn’t boggle the mind. With languages that use different letters … of course it’s confusing. But Czech was letters I know in orderings that I’d never encountered before. There was no ‘wo ist die bahnhof’ (where is the train station), there was ‘kde je vlakové nádraží’ … go ahead, try and guess how to say that.

I’ll end with the most beautiful phrase in German I know, “Ich fürchte, es gibt einen Spinnenaffe in meinem Salat, bringen Sie mir bitte ein Paar chirurgische Handschuhe und einen Zylinder. Sofort. Oh und auch ein Monokel.”

8% Fluent

According to Duolingo, as of tonight, I am 8% fluent in German. I don’t know who I could communicate with my 8% fluency but I think it would have to be someone who has been hit by a truck several times.

I could maybe keep up with a 16 month old. Would you consider yourself 8% fluent in the English language at the ripe age of 1 and 1/4 years old?

Ich bin eine banane. Did you know that means I am a banana? I can tell people these kinds of things with my 8%.

“Hallo.”

“Hallo!”

“Du ist eine kartoffel?”

“Nein, bitte! Ich bin ein mann!”

Here we see one of any number of classic German conversations I might have. Someone greets me, I greet them in return, they ask if I am a potato, and in turn I inform them that I am actually a man.

What if I need to find a bathroom in Germany? No clue. But I can point to a glass of hot chocolate and say, “HeibBe schokolade, bitta! Mmmm, es ist lecker!” (This is tasty!)

Also that B should be … well, a different B. It’s called Eszett. Did duolingo teach me that? Of course not, I know “8%.”

I wish I could be confused as this guy, you need 80%+ understanding before idioms can even make sense enough to baffle you.

Animal Facts! (Horse, Otter, Long-Spined Sea Urchin, Mandrill Monkey)

Horse

Can’t see the spice ‘dill weed’ without giggling. (What a total dill weed.)

Does a great impression of someone doing a terrible impression of a German accent. Not really, but it’s better to think that’s what he’s doing.

Ewwwwwww! … Oh, ohhhh! Ha. Oh I get it … Still, ew.

Bicycles, unicycles, recycles – you name it, he cycles it.

Regrets to inform you that he is FRESH TO DEATH!

Otter

When he’s in a fight with his girlfriend he talks to a pretend audience, saying, “oh sure, who needs fluid transitions? Change scene as you please.”

Is not platform independent.

Doesn’t know which he has more of: attraction to Burt Reynolds, or fear over his attraction to Burt Reynolds.

Every once and a while says something so poignant and so brilliant – but then you realize you’re just drunk.

Wouldn’t pick Lebron James.

Long-Spined Sea Urchin

Counting down the minutes until the next hour begins.

FOOOOOOOOOD FIIIIIIIIIGHT!

Glasses? Check. Keys? Check. Wallet? Check. Pants? … Of course not.

Loves discovering great, unheard of indie romantic comedies. Also happens to hate 99% of the movies he watches.

Notices you noticing him noticing you.

Mandrill Monkey

Finds you incredibly attractive.

Like a fine wine, gets better with age. Unlike a fine wine, hated by old white people.

Funky. Fresh. Dressed. And ready to party.

When he’s bored he kills time by picturing famous people saying, with dramatic flair, “up your butt and around the corner.”

Refuses to drink Aquafina bottled water – you call that bottled water? He calls it bottled spit. Puh-lease!

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