Tuesday, 4 June 2013

That's easy for you to say!

Last night I discovered the sad news that the fabulous and not at all fictitious German word Rindfleischetikettierungsüberwachungsaufgabenübertrag-ungsgesetz  has ceased to exist. In so far as a word can be said to die, bereft of life it has shuffled off this mortal coil and joined the choir invisible. It is an ex word.

The German language is justifiably famous for its compound nouns, reflecting the German propensity to call a spade a manualsoilremovalwerkzeug. (I know, I know, it’s ‘spaten’ really, you spoilsport!) I remember from my dim and distant youth (who I keep in a poorly-lit box, far away) some cracking made-up, Anglicised German words and phrases like Das flippen-floppen (windscreen wipers) and Plinkenplankenplunkenboxgepounder (pianist).

We have plenty of German words in use every day in English such as the fabulous word without which the inner character of every true-born Englishman could never adequately be described -  Schadenfreude. And where would we be without such responses as gesundheit or the sage and timely Vorsprung Durch Technik to draw on whenever an Audi is seen broken down – kaput - on the motorway?

In fact we should resist with all our might the politicised dumbing down of our beautiful language else soon all we will be left with is a meagre and anodyne Newspeak. As Syme, in 1984 says, “It's a beautiful thing, the destruction of words.” commenting on the intention to completely eclipse Oldspeak before 2050. It’s already happening and unless we fight back we won’t even have the language to express irony within a generation, let alone the irony of introducing new words plundered from the German language.

Franglais was fun. I reckon Deutschesprechen will be a delight and we should do it more often. It’s a game anybody can play. I'm going to call it British-German... or "Breutsche".

Thus I present:
  • Schpendentaxundspchendenmoretillvearepoorhein = Labour Party
  • Komödiehoistencockundschaften = Boris Johnson
  • Istmannorfrauwhoknau? = Harriet Harman
  • Gromitidentitätswechsel = Ed Miliband
  • Wreckenzeerailbahn = Bob Crow
  • Scheenischinidishengesichtdave =Shiny Dave Cameron
  • Baschendeboschennigel =Nigel Farage
  • Detwatökonomische = George Osborne

UK Eurovision entry 2014

Feel free to add your own beiträge in the comments box hereinunten. Danke schön


  1. Einenshitzenfartenmegaphonentwatenzeeprichgarteninvadendich : Owen Jones

  2. Unserliebalandevassehrsehrgutjeztihnenkaputmachen: Tony Blair