A Strange Blog: About mother tongues, and Germans

Yesterday somebody accused me of speaking (i.e. singing) bad English. I wondered, shortly, if I was AGAIN (after only recently) to be mistaken for an Australian with a toothache. (ME the band, are you to blame for that after only 6 months of friendship??)

Well, whatever, I am not a human being and thus don´t even have tongue of my own. All borrowed. But it´s fun to play British, and since the internet was invented, almost everyone understands enough of it to recognize our message. Did you forget we are still searching members of our lost crew by means of our music? But don´t take that as an apology, please. It isn´t needed.

Nevertheless that made me think about language. Especially as I am right now stuck in a country that utterly hates its own culture and language and does its best to avoid them wherever possible. (Why should I use them, then? There´s enough people hating me already.)

SpaceRadio142 (c) Susanne Clausen

I heard, just today, a police officer talk on TV about some new regulation concerning internet crime. As I was stupid enough to fall for one of these frauds myself (and had to pay twice for my phone (which didn´t even work very long)), I got interested and started listening. And guess what: with a broad Saxon accent he mumbled something of a “Virtual Crime Specialist Section” or other, that had to be founded to hunt virtual crimes. An utterly funny situation, that is, if it was not so sad. No Spanish Guardia would ever call a spec ops division something English, nor would any other country (if it´s not using English as official language, of course). Or do you know any other examples? I would be happy to know.

I mean, it´s one thing to call your funky device “pad” or “pod” without even knowing what that means or where the naming originates (thank you, Mr Roddenberry!). But to use a foreign language for internal affairs of the state – isn´t that, well, freaky at best?

– do you know what is really, really, sad? The Germans even invented a nonexisting GEnglish word for their cell phones. They call them “handy”. Well, they are, obviously, but that´s a noun in Germany. WTF? I mean – there´s enough English words for that darn thing, call it cell, mobile, or wheretheheckisthatdarnphoneagain. Or, just maybe, they could have stuck with Telefon, Mobilfon, Fonchen, Foni, Funki, or whatnot.

(And you know what? the only people ever complaining about lack of authenticity in any language but their own are, surprise!, the Germans. No Englishman, American Beauty, Nigerian prince or Scottish fool ever found my or my companion´s idiom ever wanting.)

Many Germans will tell you that´s a Nazi thing, that the Nazis stole the German culture.  That´s partly correct, of course – I was there (before I went to sleep for some decades, right in time when things started getting really bad). And I don´t want to hear some of them Volkslieder again in my entire life. But how could they steal a language? And why didn´t that happen in other Nazi countries, Italy, Spain? or under Stalin?

I have no answer for that. Thus I´ll leave you for today. If you stumble upon any answers, please post them. I am getting tired of having to provide all of them for you petty humans.

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