and welcome to our German Word of the Day and today it’s time for another episode of:
Words – married and in love
In those specials we look at combinations of words that are used very frequently and that mean… well somewhat more than just the combination. Last time we looked at was für, a really potent couple… sem… uh.. sementically (oh god, that doesn’t sound right).
And here are our words for today:
- gehen and um (pron.: ghehuhn / oom)
Those 2 words can be combined in not 1, not 2 but 3 different ways and we’ll look at all of them today. That way, you’ll learn to thoroughly hate German while I get to procrastinate the god damn drag that is explaining the word mal… oh mal…
In a daze for days,
mulling over the malice
oh malleable mal.
(this Haiku was brought to you by: Dictionary ®, Helping people show off since 1876)
Anyway… let’s get back to our actual topic. As we learned in our little April’s fools post, little words like an, aus or um can be combined with a verb in different ways. I can honestly not imagine how confusing those combinations must be for someone who is just starting to learn German. Unfortunately, there is no way around that and many of those combinations are really important words or constructions. When you start learning German, you may very well ignore cases for months and it still make good progress… but those combinations are vital and we have to deal with them.
Um can be combined with gehen in 3 different ways … as a preposition, as a separable prefix and … as a non-separable prefix…. yap. Sooooo confusing. Let’s start with the preposition version. Continue reading
German sucks. No one likes it. Especially Bella doesn’t. First of, it has cases. Detectives have cases, laywers have cases but languages… come on!
Also, German has part of the verb at the end. What’s that supposed to be? Do the parts of the verb have like a distance relationship? Couples have distance relationships but a language? Puh-leeze!
But the worstest thing by far are the, for the lack f a better word, little words… like … German’s always like “Ooooohhhh look, I’m the German language and I have 3 genders. I’m soooooooo organized” And you’re like… wow 3 genders, that is pretty damn organized and modern … but then yóu look a little closer and you see all those little words lying around all over the place… like ein or an.. and you’re like “Oh uh German, what kind of word is an… is it like and Adverb or a preposition” and German is like “Pffff I don’t know… it depends.”
And so you’re like “oh… uh… okay” and you’re like “Hey an, great to meet you, what’s your translation?” And an‘s just like “Oh actually I got like 10… you wouldn’t wanne know.”… It’s just soooo messy. Sometimes the little word is part of the verb as a prefix, sometimes it is also part of the verb but as a preposition and sometimes it is even both… I mean… look at this, this is crazy:
The first mit is a preposition, the second one is a separated prefix of the verb mitkommen an both mits MUST be there or the sentence would be grammatically wrong. Let’s have a look at how English deals with the same content:
One with. English is 50% more with-efficient than German.
So the little words are really a big deal in German… oh speaking of little words, I really should do a post on mal some time, that would certainly interest a lot of folks. Too bad that it’s April now. Malch would have been a really good time to do it. Oh well, another Malch will come eventually.
So… today we learned why German sucks. I am off to a site where I can learn Klingon.
Hope you liked it and see you next time.
The post on mal is in the pipeline but it is REALLY EXHAUSTING … I hate mal… and the real post on “gehen um” will be online tonight or tomorrow the latest.
Happy April’s fools day.