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Old 20.01.2007, 02:45
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German words used by expats in English conversations

I'm in my 7th year here and i'm fairly fluent in German. There are certain German words that i seem to use whilst speaking English rather than the equivialent English word as they just seem more appropriate.

For example... "Bahnof" is a much better word than "train station" and "kaput" is more effective than "broken". Another one that springs to mind is "achtung", it's just more useful than "attention".

As i work with food and speak German at work, there are foods that i know in German but i'm stumped when i try to think of what they are called in my mother tongue.

I know i'm not the only native English speaker with this trait... anyone got any other examples of German words being more useful than the English version
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Old 20.01.2007, 03:56
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Re: German words used by expats in English conversations

Good ones!!

I find I say "scheisse" instead of shit.
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Old 20.01.2007, 12:49
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Re: German words used by expats in English conversations

Quote:
I'm in my 7th year here and i'm fairly fluent in German. There are certain German words that i seem to use whilst speaking English rather than the equivialent English word as they just seem more appropriate.

For example... "Bahnof" is a much better word than "train station" and "kaput" is more effective than "broken". Another one that springs to mind is "achtung", it's just more useful than "attention".

As i work with food and speak German at work, there are foods that i know in German but i'm stumped when i try to think of what they are called in my mother tongue.

I know i'm not the only native English speaker with this trait... anyone got any other examples of German words being more useful than the English version
Very interesting example you give. Kaput as you spell it is the **English** version of the same sounding German word Kaputt, which is probably why you like it
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Old 20.01.2007, 15:36
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Re: German words used by expats in English conversations

Quote:
I'm in my 7th year here and i'm fairly fluent in German. There are certain German words that i seem to use whilst speaking English rather than the equivialent English word as they just seem more appropriate.

For example... "Bahnof" is a much better word than "train station" and "kaput" is more effective than "broken". Another one that springs to mind is "achtung", it's just more useful than "attention".

As i work with food and speak German at work, there are foods that i know in German but i'm stumped when i try to think of what they are called in my mother tongue.

I know i'm not the only native English speaker with this trait... anyone got any other examples of German words being more useful than the English version
Kaput is actually used a lot in English - in fact, it's in the English dictionary. But I remember using a lot of German words as they were 'better' than English ones for some things: ie. They were shorter and snappier usually.

One that springs to mind is 'genau' for 'exactly'. 'Parkhaus' is another - comes off the tongue easier than 'Multi-storey car park'.


Gav
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Old 20.01.2007, 18:32
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Re: German words used by expats in English conversations

"Gemeinde"
Beats the hell out of "Local community (bit actually Government) resident's controliing office"...
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Old 20.01.2007, 18:41
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Re: German words used by expats in English conversations

I don't know what you're all talking about - using German words whilst speaking English.---phaaa.... The English language surely has enough suitable words to choose from in any situation........oder?
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Old 20.01.2007, 19:36
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Re: German words used by expats in English conversations

"Genau", but always said slightly tongue in cheek.
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Old 20.01.2007, 20:21
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Re: German words used by expats in English conversations

Quote:
"Genau", but always said slightly tongue in cheek.
When I do that it just comes out "gwer-wow"...
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Old 20.01.2007, 20:48
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Re: German words used by expats in English conversations

Quote:
I don't know what you're all talking about - using German words whilst speaking English.---phaaa.... The English language surely has enough suitable words to choose from in any situation........oder?
Au contraire...

Schadenfreude? No English equivalent.

And all these too
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Old 20.01.2007, 21:08
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Re: German words used by expats in English conversations

Even though I live in the French-speaking part of the country, I only use SBB and never CFF. I also find myself using 'bahnhof' when speaking English in the German part of the country, but never 'gare' when in the French speaking part, I always translate it to station (this is despite my French being WAY better than my German).
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Old 20.01.2007, 22:26
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Re: German words used by expats in English conversations

"Stange" quicker than Ill av a pint luv.


DC
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Old 21.01.2007, 04:42
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Re: German words used by expats in English conversations

"Stange"... rather than a pint, Been here way far too long mate. What is it with the Swiss and small beers. "Ein Herr Götli bitte" (yes, i know it might (/IS) be spelt wrong, aye, do i care?) (you get the point aye?)

"Genau" was the very first Swiss German word that made any sense to me, closely followed by "streifen" (i may have the e and the i in the wrong order there, forum pedants >c'mon, carpark?)... thanks to the radio mentioning stories about the Gaza Streifen.
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Old 21.01.2007, 11:11
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Re: German words used by expats in English conversations

To me, "Streife" mean "police patrol vehicle" - i.e. short for Streifendienst - or is that just (high) German ?
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Old 21.01.2007, 11:26
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Re: German words used by expats in English conversations

My favorites

- "Jein", yes and no
- "Tiptop", which is an in joke with the wife, but interestingly seems to creeping back into normal english
- "Kommt scho guet" with caricature schwiiiiitzertuuusch accent

Daniel
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Old 21.01.2007, 13:15
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Re: German words used by expats in English conversations

"What is it with the Swiss and small beers"
When you leave work on Friday at 5 and crawl out the the bar at 2 am, I think drinking pints I would need medical help.

DC
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Old 21.02.2007, 16:51
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Re: German words used by expats in English conversations

I love scheisse... well the word anyway- find it so much more fulfilling than 'shit' – too short and dry

‘genau' – nothing as precise and exact as genau

'doch' - I like too - much easier on the tongue to say ‘doch doch’ as compared to ‘of course of course’
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Old 21.02.2007, 16:59
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Re: German words used by expats in English conversations

Sheewie- "Doch" doesn't mean of course........it means the opposite really in a sort of Little Britain" Yeah-but-no-but" kind of way. It sort of means "however", "but" etc....
So what have you been agreeing to when other's thought you weren't
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Old 21.02.2007, 17:25
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Re: German words used by expats in English conversations

Quote:
... "Doch" doesn't mean of course........it means the opposite really in a sort of Little Britain" Yeah-but-no-but" kind of way. It sort of means "however", "but" etc....
So what have you been agreeing to when other's thought you weren't
oh really?!

That explains why I've been getting so unpopular ever since I started speaking German and using doch doch

yeah-but-no-but- however-but- i thought-but.......

that's good to know
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Old 21.02.2007, 17:40
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Re: German words used by expats in English conversations

läch du mir....


nuff sed
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Old 21.02.2007, 17:46
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Re: German words used by expats in English conversations

Quote:
oh really?!

That explains why I've been getting so unpopular ever since I started speaking German and using doch doch

yeah-but-no-but- however-but- i thought-but.......

that's good to know
I don't think we're really defining doch correctly here. Doch can be used instead of aber, and means "but." However, if you're in a conversation and someone disagrees with you, saying "nein," you can respond with "doch," which means yes in this context. Actually, more like "yes it is" -- rather affirmative. I fail to see the connection to the teenage character in Little Britain's catch phrase.

Here: this is probably better http://german.about.com/library/weekly/aa010806b.htm
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