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Wednesday 03.Sep.2014

No highly-rated posts on this day.

Tuesday 02.Sep.2014

StarStarStarStarStar (10)   Renouncing US citizenship by willowhands
I went to check this out today, and it looks like it will work! Granted, I fulfill all the usual requirements to get German citizenship anyway (over 8 years working and living here, practically fluent German, health insurance, etc..) I also conveniently earn enough, but not above the approximately 1,790 Euro cost of renunciation, so the German law of hardship (paragraph 12, I think) does apply in my case. There is a bunch of paperwork to collect - birth certificate, proof of german abilities, proof of being self-employed the entire time, health insurance, among other things, and, most importantly: a paper from the US consulate stating that the fee is indeed $2,350. I have contacted the consulate about getting that, and will keep you updated about how to get this. I assume that after… (another 159 words)
StarStarStarStar (7)   Getting an Asperger's/autism diagnosis by LeonG
Thanks for the link Your neurodiverse (Aspie) score: 139 of 200 Your neurotypical (non-autistic) score: 75 of 200 You are very likely neurodiverse (Aspie) Now, what am I going to do with that? Probably nothing. IMO Aspie is becoming one of the fab things to be diagnosed with. I have in the last few years known 3 adults who were diagnosed as Aspie's and immediately felt at ease that they officially had something wrong with them, stopped working and went on disability. For me, being an Aspie.. or not.. doesn't change anything. Does it make me less capable of doing my job than I was an hour ago? Somehow I don't think so.
StarStarStar (5)   Applying for a residence permit by PandaMunich
Yes, sorry, the Finanzamt accepts programmers with a university degree as freelancers, while for those without a degree it's usually an uphill struggle: they get classified as gewerblich initially and then have to try to convince the Finanzamt that they're not. Most times without success.
StarStar (4)   Applying for a residence permit by engelchen
In other words, you submitted a business plan for a business that has nothing to do with Germany as the basis for a self-employment permit for Germany. Personally I think that a business proposal without any Germany clients is very weak and I'm not surprised that your application was refused. In Germany, formal qualifications always have an impact. Since your permit was denied, you now have 2 choices; you can leave Germany before your 90 days are up or you can try again with a better business plan. Keep in mind that you are have no legal claim to a permit and it is at the discretion of the civil servant processing your application. Furthermore, if you decide to reapply, you need to do so before you have spent over 90 days in the Schengen Area.
StarStar (4)   Stay in Studentenwohnheim as a working citizen by kato
No, they don't (unless they operate with too much capacity, which you won't find in this area). There are also no student dorms in Walldorf, considering the closest university is over 15 km away.
StarStar (4)   Moving to Germany, pregnancy, insurance etc... by engelchen
It is highly unlikely that your wife will be able to find a job in the next year. As you already know, Berlin is the economic black hole of Germany with too many unskilled foreigners and a very high unemployment rate. Moving here without having skills needed on the labour market is generally challenging, howvever, moving here with a child on the way without being sure that you'll have health insurance is incredibly irresponsible. Skills that are unfortunately not in demand in Berlin. If you are really concerned about your child, you should reconsider your plan. Keep in mind that these Customer Service Representative positions in Berlin have a very high turnover and most new hires do not pass the probationary period. You are only allowed to be in Germany as long as your wife fulfills… (another 129 words)
StarStar (3)   Moving to Berlin and my situation/question is unique by Conquistador
Just a word of advice about "English-speaking companies"- you will still often find yourself at a huge disadvantage when it comes to communicating with other employees (including socializing), or even your boss, if your German is not up to snuff and the others are not entirely comfortable in English. This can lead to all sorts of misunderstandings and limit your success and advancement. A colleague may end up being a go-between, and not only isn't that optimal, but it may be resented and prevent your case from being heard, i.e., result in a less-than-favorable view of you (I once had to serve as the go-between for colleagues from South Asia and, although they were great colleagues, it was a distraction from my work).

Monday 01.Sep.2014

StarStarStarStarStarStarStarStar (15)   Bank account seized by hawkesm
So, a bit of an update, just in case anyone else is looking for information on this subject. After I had been paid, I just went down to my bank and asked them to transfer the sum that had been claimed against my account, a couple of hours later the "freeze" was lifted and I was able to use my bank account normally again. If you look around on the internet there is information about converting your account to a "P-konto", this is NOT the thing to do unless the sum of the claim is greater than any money you are likely to have incoming into your account, and you need some protection for living costs over several months. From my point of view, I put this down as a lesson learned, and not to be so careless with finance and legal matters in a system I don't fully understand… (another 24 words)
StarStarStar (5)   Getting an Asperger's/autism diagnosis by ruapehu
jeba is almost certainly right on this one....because the insurers would fear having to pay out for therapy (and maybe medication). That's all they're interested in, not employability. OP hasn't said how she wants to deal with the diagnosis - therapy? Or what is the aim of having the diagnosis repeated in Germany? If it's "just" for peace of mind and then you'll do self-help measures, there wouldn't really be any need for a second formal diagnosis. If you want therapy, it's moot whether it's considered a medical condition or a "state of mind" - the insurance companies would be asked to foot the bill for that therapy, and they would therefore either exclue the condition from cover, or more likely reject your application for insurance. If… (another 55 words)
StarStarStar (5)   Job offer received - Salary expectations not met by dj_jay_smith
In my experience then in the IT industry work experience counts more than a degree and a degree of any type is good to get you in the door but after that your experience will be more important. As such, then given that you do have 6 years experience then I would suggest that you should be pushing this. Highlighting this fact, and because of this you are not a newbie that knows nothing, that you will hit the ground running and be adding value from day 1. Otherwise, if you don't get the figure you are looking for then consider a structured deal. When you start at x and after 6 months this rises to x+y, and a year later to x+y+z. This gives you a guarantee of a better package in the future and them a guarantee that you are committed to them and allows them to see you develop over time.
StarStarStar (5)   Kids spend all their free time with computers by Russet
I overheard a woman in a computer store say to the sales assistant “I want a game capable of holding the interest of my six-year-old, but it’s got to be simple enough for his father to play, too.”
StarStarStar (5)   Parents to be extradited back to UK by pappnase
Gwaptiva, the child has a brain cancer of sorts and the family want "proton beam therapy" to treat it, the NHS say that it's not the best treatment for his form of cancer and want to use something else. Proton beam is expensive and it's not easily available in the UK but NHS England have paid in the past for kids to go abroad for this treatment. It doesn't seem to be available in Spain so I'm not sure why they family have run there. I don't know enough about treatment options for this awful disease to know what is in the best interests of the child, but I think that should be the only deciding factor when finding out if the family should be brought back to the UK.
StarStar (4)   Parents to be extradited back to UK by modernbird
removing (part of) the skull isn't a lobotomy. lt happens all the time with brain surgery. They saw the skull enough to create a trap door, essentially. When surgery is over, they close the flap so that the skull mends. Bodies are amazing things.
StarStar (3)   Parents to be extradited back to UK by BattalionBoy
To sell a property in a foreign country, they didn’t have to run away with the hospital patient without informing anybody. One of my work colleagues was a Jehovah witness and at first all seemed perfectly normal until one day there was a discussion about prehistoric times to which he quickly dismissed fossils and any other scientific data (prehistoric man, evolution, existence of dinosaurs etc.) as complete nonsense and non-proof. I quickly realized I was dealing with a complete fruit cake and the relationship deteriorated exponentially after this
StarStar (3)   Parents to be extradited back to UK by MadAxeMurderer
Parents of a dying child tend to be pretty desperate and willing to believe in anything that might save their child. They may be believing in pointless treatment, or the NHS may be acting the asshole. Hard for any of us to know. @Yorkeau Nothing is accelerated to the speed of light. Except photons, neutrinos, and gravitons. But baryonic protons: never.
StarStar (4)   The Vent by GertyMeTurty
it is such a shame that having moved to an office in which other English people work, it seems that they are a bunch of cliquey assholes. I've discovered that I don't really like them on a friendship level and they are not really my kind of people, but being a grown-up and all, I am polite and courteous at work and thought we all had a good working relationship. As such, it was pretty stinging to not be invited to a "workmates" dinner (of 7+ people) on Friday night. I am however more annoyed at myself for feeling so hurt by it: these guys are fuckers and I don't want to hang out with them outside of work anyway!
StarStar (3)   Pergamon altar closing on Sept. 28 by El Jeffo
I was looking up another museum for my wife and discovered a notice today that the hall containing the Pergamon Altar, along with the north wing and gallery of Hellenistic art, will be closed on September 28, 2014 and is due to remain closed to the public until 2020. So if you haven't gotten around to it yet or want to see it again before it goes away for a while, the clock is ticking. Announcement at SMB site If you plan to visit, be sure to buy your tickets in advance and skip the long lines.
StarStar (3)   Fathers in girls' shower area at swim school by Beuel
Darting in and out to help their own kids = ok Hanging out to watch the kids = not ok Tell the guy that you will need to talk to the club because he makes your daughter uncomfortable and you wonder what his motivation might be to act like that. That should be hint enough that you think he's a perv. If he still doesn't get it, talking to the club management would be the best way to end this. He might be completely harmless. But better safe than sorry.

Sunday 31.Aug.2014

StarStarStarStarStar (10)   Buying and sending a birthday gift by PandaMunich
[list=1] Go to Obletter at Karlsplatz. Buy a toy. Walk 450m west on Bayerstr. (see map) until you reach the central train station (= Hauptbahnhof). Enter the post office located opposite the station. If the toy already comes in a sturdy box, go to step 5. Otherwise look for the display of light-yellow cardboard boxes that the post office sells and decide what size box you will need. Stand in line. When you are served, tell them that you want to send a parcel. If you also need a box, tell them the size. They will give you an address label and a customs declaration. Fill them in. Go back to the clerk, hand over everything, pay what he/she asks for. [/list]
StarStarStarStarStar (9)   The Vent by Mellyco
I'm feeling so bad for my elderly neighbour(N#1) right now. She lives directly underneath us, and has a little dog who has separation anxiety, and barks when she is out. It was really bad, but now that she knows it is happening, she is really good about making sure that he isn't left alone for long periods of time. And when she is home, he only barks if someone comes to the door. Anyway, a new neighbour (N#2) moved in under her last week, and has a large dog that won't shut up. But he is in a new place, it is hard to blame him. Hopefully it won't be too long before he settles in. This afternoon, neighbour #1 must have been out, because the little dog was barking on and off, but not enough to really annoy us. But then we heard sirens, and the fire brigade, paramedics, police,… (another 328 words)
StarStarStarStar (8)   The Vent by chaos_amoeba
Dear Restaurant / Waiter, If you can't offer guaranteed gluten-free food, that's fine. You're under no obligation. But maybe you could avoid pulling that horrified face when the coeliac (whose friends, by the way, explained about when they made the booking) asks for boiled eggs instead of any of your fancy breakfast options? MAYBE you could avoid insisting that you have "loads of gluten free things - like, half the menu" if you can't really be sure what you serve will be gluten free? And - husband, dearest love of my life - maybe you, too, could step up and just say "No, boiled eggs or nothing" instead of letting yourself be intimidated into ordering something? BECAUSE then, maybe I wouldn't be looking after a really poorly husband who ate something… (another 49 words)
StarStarStar (5)   Shoplifting and student visa application by ruapehu
correct. Robinson pointed out earlier that a one-off petty theft incident isn't likely to have massive repercussions for the OP. However, on being given further information from the OP suggesting the OP may have a general issue of cleptomania, Robinson (and probably others who had initially tried to allay the OP's fears) realised that there may indeed be a serious problem arising - 1) psychological, and 2) that if caught on multiple occasions, the thefts may well cause trouble for the OP's residence permission in the long-run. No issue of inconsistency, rather one of you "not getting it", Village Idiot.
StarStar (4)   Bodensee curry night by MadAxeMurderer
Attached imageEverywhere I end up (Friedrichshafen-Fischbach) there has to be a curry night and here is no exception. The inaugural Bodensee curry night will be at the Goa Heidengasse 2a, 88677 Markdorf, Tel: 07544 949 90 80. Other curry houses to be visited are in Friedrichafen, and there are 5 or 6 across the pond in Konstanz to be tried out. I've also heard very good things about the curry house in Ravensburg. Please post here if you want to come along. While we probably don't need reservation, it's nice to have numbers. I'll also entice a few from work, will post that later. 1: MAM+1 3:
StarStar (3)   What's got you flummoxed today? by emkay
Attached imageMore tree and neighbour flummox...... The tree in question didn't get the chop, just a haircut much to the annoyance of our elderly neighbour. This is the neighbour and her husband whom we have helped quite a bit including me vaulting over their garden fence when the old chap fell down the front door steps, we called the ambulance, my husband drove the wife to hospital, we took care of the husband when the wife got rushed to hospital, my husband takes garden waste to the tip, we searched high and low for long obsolete printer parts (thank you TT for your help with that), I've been mushroom picking with the wife as she is scared to go alone and all I get is a load of tick bites, we sweep their leaves, shovel their snow etc etc. I was utterly gob smacked yesterday when the wife venomously… (another 61 words)
StarStar (3)   What made you laugh today? by Metall
I'm reposting from The Vent because part of it will disappear soon: Toytowner #1 says: • My brother in-law lives from Hartz 4 for the last 20 years. • Me and him are the same age 39. • He goes on vacation 4 times a year. And I'm a working guy and can't afford a vacation for my family and we live thrifty. Somethings wrong here. Argggggh!!! Is it me or do only parasitic people and criminals get ahead in life? Ugh!!! Toytowner #2 replies: wow, he really is screwing the system - since Hartz 4 was only introduced about ten years ago

Saturday 30.Aug.2014

StarStarStarStarStar (9)   Why are you unhappy today? by batchfile
I've spent most of this year in the UK looking after, with the help of my siblings, my elderly parents. I had planned to be back in Germany full time from October onwards but that seems ever more unlikely. I am sad. I hate seeing my parents deteriorate. I hate the fact that they won't acknowledge that they can't cope. I hate the abysmal, disjointed health care. And I really, really miss my husband.
StarStarStarStar (8)   Salary not paid for a couple of months by desdemona
This can't be stressed enough but Pandamunich really is one of the pillars of this forum. She had probably saved lives with her very helpful, very comprehensive answers. Markus, do exactly what she said, listen to Pandamunich and not your boss!
StarStarStar (5)   Strange burning smell in my flat by 2B_orNot2B
I agree with NBJ and nina_glyndwr insofar as the source of the smell is most likely due to an electrical wiring issue. Think about what your electrical current demand was during, or immediately before, the smell became noticeable. Any higher load devices such as those with heating elements or motors like dishwasher, washer, dryer, vacuum cleaner, being used when your fridge/freezer is cycling could, if the wiring is not of suitable gauge, be causing the weakest section to overheat. Electrical fires are the most common cause of house fires in Germany so don't take any unnecessary risks. If the wiring circuits were installed according to post 1970s code then the circuit your washing machine or water heater/s are on should be heavier and separately fuse protected. Overheated wiring can… (another 322 words)
StarStarStar (5)   Strange burning smell in my flat by PeterN
Are there any nails or screws in the walls - perhaps for hanging pictures? My FIL managed to put a screw through a cable. You would think that would blow the breaker or trip the RCD (GFCI, FI schalter) but the screw had enough resistance that the supply didn't switch off. The screw and the wiring just got hot and there was a burning smell. Check any screws/nails in the walls without touching them: Your local baumarkt will have sensors that allow you to find and follow cables in walls. A Berührungsloser Spannungsprüfer - will show you if something is connected to an electrical supply. Bear in mind that there may be cables passing through your walls that go to other parts of the building so you may not be able to locate cables by just looking at the switches and power sockets in… (another 3 words)
StarStarStar (5)   Strange burning smell in my flat by Metall
The screwdriver Uncle Nick means (with the built-in voltage detector, lights up red) is called a Spannungsprüfer in German. Go to the hardware store and buy one if you don't have it. It's the cheapest life insurance you can get when dealing with electricity.
StarStar (3)   Strange burning smell in my flat by nina_glyndwr
Could it be coming from some sort of electrical device that you switch on only occasionally? The last time I used my hairdryer I smelt a burning smell and realised that the hairdryer is on its way to the next life. Some wire seems to be 'burning' (not sure if it is - but it smells like it). One day, I'll try switching the thing on and it'll be dead.
StarStar (4)   Hygiene in Kindergarten by batchfile
Whilst hand-washing is the nice thing to do before eating I'm not convinced that the best efforts of small children would result in much more that the displacement of the largest lumps of grime. Isn't one of the sub-texts of kindergarten the sharing of revolting germs and building up of immunity?
StarStar (3)   Hygiene in Kindergarten by Tap
I had 3 children go through kindergarten here and at one stage, we seemed to have strep throat in the house almost all the time. Not all 3 children were susceptible to it, the youngest one got it the most, but we went through it and when kindergarten time was over, it was done and dusted and they never got it again. Kindergarten is the place for children to build their immunity to illnesses like this. I also encouraged my children to play with other children who had chicken pox, I wanted them to get it before they went to school, and they did. I also seldom gave my children antibiotics, I was lucky enough to be at home with them back then and nursed them through their illnesses. Don’t be too quick to blame the kindergarten, it’s good for kids to get dirty and for their bodies to learn… (another 18 words)
StarStar (4)   Unflattering photo of myself on Getty Images by robinson100
I just Googled "Uncle Nick" and can't find anything worrying.... Edit: I just Googled myself and the first hits are under "findagrave.com", which is somewhat worrying - am I dead already???
StarStar (3)   The Vent by kiplette
Again, building and walls. Why oh why do they bury the pipes in the walls, so that a simple break/split is invisible and leads to raw sewage accumulating in the walls, horrible black mould, then the 'fix' is a massive building job and takes ages, all because it 'looks better' to have the pipes in the wall? But then it all gets covered over with woodchip in the end. Apparently because it is long lasting and the paint doesn't chip off like it does with smooth plaster, according to the poor sod who spent his day chipping the rotten masonry out of the bathroom. Yuck yukkity yuk. Visible pipes win every time, or with an easy access wooden box cover. And a smooth plaster finish on the wall. Oh yes please.
StarStar (3)   Landlord allegedly bankrupt, Kaution question by SpiderPig
You got it right kiddo... Kick someone when they are down on their luck.... Prescious moments mate... Well done! Edited as I am at post limmit... You are a disgrace to your fellow countrymen... You want to cause damage/vandalism to this old womans apartment because her son is a Bankrupt... Shame on you... You do not deserve any help on this forum!
StarStar (3)   Landlord allegedly bankrupt, Kaution question by ruapehu
may well end up teaching you a lesson, too. Sounds like you are trying to dig yourself deeper and eeper into a hole of illegality. Then you can only hope that he is just a little crook without legal knowledge or connections himself, otherwise your lesson may involve you leaving Germany.
StarStar (3)   Legal insurance declines claim by PandaMunich
The Notar may process it, but if you have any siblings they will ask you for a reckoning of what you did with our mum's assets during her lifetime. If you're an only child then of course the old adage of "Wo kein Kläger, da kein Richter" (= if nobody complains, even illegalities will not be punished) stands, since you will not be affecting anybody else's inheritance. Though the Finanzamt may take a dim view of such unzulässige Rechtsgeschäfte (= not permitted actions) if they think that you are trying to evade inheritance tax by instead transferring her property to you by doing tax-free gifts of up to 400,000€ every 10 years, just saying... I suggest you read this section in the link that arunadasi posted: Bei einer Befreiung von den Beschränkungen des § 181… (another 188 words)
StarStar (3)   Leaseholder property protection rights by kato
Not at all. The Erbbaurecht expiring time-wise leads to a rejoining of legal ownership of both land and building to the benefit of the land owner, with the previous building owner having to be compensated for this loss. The compensation amount and regulations is usually set up in the Erbbaurecht contract, although this is not required. The land owner can, but is not required to, also - multiple times sequentially - offer an extension of the Erbbaurecht for as long as the building stands; should the building owner decline this extension then his right to compensation for the building ceases completely. §27 ErbbauRG.

Friday 29.Aug.2014

StarStarStarStarStarStarStarStarStarStar (20)   Salary not paid for a couple of months by PandaMunich
Attached imageGo to the Arbeitsamt, since you haven't received your salary for more than 2 months, they will give you some money immediately to live on. Please see here for a case similar to yours, the lawyer told him exactly that. Going to the Arbeitsamt is anyway what you are obliged to do, within 3 days of the day that you received your Kündigung. This is laid down in the law, §38 Sozialgesetzbuch III: Personen, deren Ausbildungs- oder Arbeitsverhältnis endet, sind verpflichtet, sich spätestens drei Monate vor dessen Beendigung persönlich bei der Agentur für Arbeit arbeitsuchend zu melden. Liegen zwischen der Kenntnis des Beendigungszeitpunktes und der Beendigung des Ausbildungs- oder Arbeitsverhältnisses weniger als drei Monate, haben sie sich innerhalb von drei Tagen nach Kenntnis des Beendigungszeitpunktes… (another 602 words)
StarStarStarStar (8)   Salary not paid for a couple of months by Metall
No! No!! What the company is doing is called Insolvenzverschleppung in German, meaning delaying proper bankruptcy procedures, and this is illegal. Asking you to help cover that up is illegal, and makes you an accessory! This is super shady! The contract termination for a bad market situation is a damn lie. Do not sign ANYTHING! You *must* tell the Arbeitsamt about this on Monday, also that you haven't been paid for months (bring your contract and bank statements as proof), and ask for assistance in getting Insolvenzgeld (financial aid for employees of a bankrupt company). The point is, as long as they cover up the bankruptcy, you won't get the Insolvenzgeld. Also read How to get a court payment order (Mahnbescheid) about getting a court order to make your… (another 116 words)
StarStarStarStarStarStarStar (13)   Why are you unhappy today? by smeeks
This morning we discovered a small doe next to our neighbor's house. It was hurt and couldn't stand, just those big doe eyes staring at you. Traudy talked to it in a soothing voice but no activity except trying to stand up. I decided to call 911 and did. I asked them to send animal control and they did. A female with the animal control truck came. However, she was accompanied by two of our finest cops in two patrol cars. After studying the situation. she put one of those noose things around the doe's neck and pulled her out into the grass. After studying the situation and talking things over one of the cops pulled out his pistol and shot the doe. After the animal control officer felt for a pulse, he shot the doe again. She again checked if the doe was alive. It was, so they… (another 183 words)
StarStarStarStar (8)   Why are you unhappy today? by mlovett
I went to my doc appt yesterday, only to find a note on the door that she's dead. She and her husband died in a horrific accident. I really, really liked her. Then I spent all day looking for a new doctor. I hope I will like her.
StarStar (4)   Why are you unhappy today? by LostinLuneburg
Killing animals is one of the main tasks of animal welfare officers. Sometimes to prevent an animal pain, sometimes to prevent the spread of disease. If the animal was injured, but otherwise healthy, the meat may well go to feed carnivores. That said, there is no excuse for doing it with a pistol! It needs to be done cleanly and as quickly as possible!
StarStarStar (6)   Renouncing US citizenship by Hazza
This is incorrect. The fee could very well be enough to allow US citizens to take on German citizenship without losing their US citizenship. As long as the fee is more than a month's net income or at least €1280, it is considered unreasonable to expect someone to pay that much to renounce their original citizenship. Details here
StarStarStar (6)   Being asked for money from beggars in DE by El Jeffo
In my experience, nearly all the "woe is me" beggar types are frauds. I mentioned some time back that there's a swarthy-looking guy who canvasses my neighborhood, walking with a cane and a severe limp and shaking his paper coffee cup at everyone he passes. I've watched him on several occasions as he'd turn a corner and, (incorrectly) assuming he's not being observed, straighten up and walk normally. One time the idiot even gave his cane a little Chaplinesque twirl as he poured the (round metal) contents of his coffee cup into his blazer pocket. I had another encounter a couple of weeks ago, when I was having lunch at an outdoor cafe with a friend, and a bent-over woman in a saree and headscarf - holding hands with a young child - approached us and gave us a highly… (another 93 words)
StarStar (4)   Being asked for money from beggars in DE by nina_glyndwr
The first guy was probably just interested in talking to foreigners and practising English The second guy was only trying to be helpful. If I hear people talking English and looking a bit lost, I ask if they need help.
StarStarStar (6)   Cancelling a gym membership by sarabyrd
Yes. It doesn't if you entered the premise voluntarily and received the contract for your signature face to face after receiving instruction on the content of the contract. The two week cooling off period refers to contract made via the internet, on the phone or with a door-to-door salesperson. You didn't ask but still, you will hear this fairly often: Don't sign anything that you do not understand. You mean you signed someone else's name to it? Hmm, that could be considered forgery. Correct, in this case. Contrary to popular belief, people in Germany are not on a default setting to take advantage of the ignorant foreigner. Save your money for Disclaimer: I am not a lawyer. Please have all legal advice you receive here verified by a legal professional.
StarStarStar (5)   Cancelling a gym membership by friederike
There's no such thing in Germany as a general 14-day cancellation period for contracts. It exists only for contracts made on the phone, via fax or online (Fernabsatzgesetz). You signed the contract, you're stuck with it. Plus your idea with the fake signature tells me you signed it planning or at least considering to trick them so forgive my lack of compassion. They have your address. In what way your fake signature might help you, I don't know. If I were you, I'd seek advice from a lawyer or Verbraucherzentrale. PS: Sorry, didn't see that sarabyrd had already replied.
StarStarStar (5)   Kids spend all their free time with computers by LostinLuneburg
I think we need to define gaming. I personally see a big difference between gaming (in the sense of complicated, challenging, age-appropriate games) and random surfing or flash-style games that require little-to-no thinking. The first can be a hobby like any other, as it can be done together with online and real-life friends and requires learning, thinking, and skill. Like any hobby, it usually is fun and healthy but can become obsessive. The random surfing/flash games are heading towards zombie-territory which is fine for every once in a while brain-clearing session (with a "depending on age" caveat - for instance, I think that Angry Birds is great for practicing fine motor skills in small kids and zombie material in anyone older). Unfortunately, I can't imagine the step-kids… (another 68 words)
StarStarStar (5)   Kids spend all their free time with computers by don_riina
The difference I see between time spent on computer games by kids today, and kids back in the 80's when I was young, is that we had to wait 5 minutes for every game to load from cassette, and multiplayer gaming was not really around, so everyone had to take turns. So, we did not actually spend as much time gaming, but still sat in front of the computer for hours and hours at a time. Out of interest, reading that some parents limit their children's computer time, does anyone put any kind of restrictions on the amount of time their kids play outside with a ball? Because almost nobody makes money from playing with a ball, yet there are thousands of us that learned how to hack games as a kid, and now work in the IT industry.. Creativity and problem solving in minecraft - or the pointless… (another 10 words)
StarStarStar (5)   Betriebsrat - works council by franklan
Hi, One of the jobs of the "Betriebsrat" is lighting a fire under the bosses @rse if ladies are substantially paid less then gents. Guess what, to do that job the Betriebsrat members regularly check the employee lists concerning who earns how much. That's what they were elected for by the employees. He might be employed in logistics but because the other folks in that company considered him to be the right guy to stand up for their rights, the elected him to be a member of the works council, and the members of the work council elected him to be the "head of work council". Depending on the size of the company he is doing that full time and is actually never doing his assigned work task (which means your "head count" is reduced by one)... Further reading: h… (another 9 words)
StarStarStar (5)   The Vent by loz_adele
omg WHY are you trying to tell me what type of wall you can and can't paint and how 'clueless' I am with DIY if you have NEVER PAINTED A WALL IN YOUR LIFE. No, I will not go to the trouble of stripping off the hideous wallpaper in our nice new flat just to replace it with that hideous woodchip (what is it with Germans and woodchip anyway?! This isn't the frigging 80s!). Just cos I left it up in the old flat doesnt mean I like it, I'm not crazy enough to try and strip that when it's already there but I'm certainly not gonna put it up in areas it isn't! Just what is your problem with flat surfaces?! A smooth painted wall is so much nicer than painted woodchip! Man alive I hate that
StarStarStar (5)   Legal insurance declines claim by arunadasi
My mother-in-law died on Monday. It came very unexpectedly. Last I saw her was two weeks ago, when I went to pick her up and brought her to my village to visit my husband, who is very ill (another story). She was in fact fitter than him. Then her grandson went on holiday, she went into a care home for the duration, and two days later she died. Funeral was yesterday. I was actually quite sad at the funeral. I have grown very fond of her. Totally ignored the grandson. Afterwards, I went to a cafe with the cousin, cousin's wife, MIL's Goddaughter. The cousin, who used to manage her accounts up to four years ago, told me that the amount my dear stepson has taken amounts to about 55k. Nice. Just two weeks ago MIL told me she wants to withdraw some more money for my daughter, but according… (another 79 words)
StarStar (4)   Legal insurance declines claim by arunadasi
Wow! I just read the couple of posts before my last. There was someone jumping to extreme conclusions! Just FYI, if you are still reading this: I was not pushing her into a care home. Just about everyone who cares for her has advised her to do so as she is in very bad hands with her grandson. Care homes are not all as bad as people think. She used to sit around alone all day long, neglected by family, sometimes her fridge was empty. In a care home she would be well looked after and have company. She used to hate the very idea of me, without ever meeting me. I managed to win her trust and her love. I think that is something! In the last year she often called me up to talk, begged me to come and visit as she was so alone. I have been hoping, planning, that in future I could… (another 72 words)
StarStar (4)   Bastard or bitch of the day by Porky Pine
To the nameless thieving bitch or bastard who stole my friend's rollator on Wednesday: You defy description. You stole my friend's rollator that he is dependent upon to get around because he is much too shaky on his feet to walk without it outside. And yes, he has to get out and walk because he needs some exercise, even if it's only walking around a couple of blocks twice a day. My elderly friend lost his beloved wife some months ago, which is a hard enough blow after being married for eons. He now also has heart problems and blood pressure issues. I find his attitude toward life amazing after all he's been through recently, and yet he still manages to get out and walk a bit, even though it isn't easy for him physically. He had an important appointment yesterday that he… (another 231 words)
StarStar (4)   Germany vs. Yorkshire by loz_adele
I'm from Sheffield, studied in Leeds and have lived in Cologne for 7 years. Much as I love Yorkshire, I personally think Germany would be better for your kids. Not that I have any myself so I'm probably not qualified to judge but higher education is way too expensive over in the UK now. And I just think in Germany, they're so much better with languages and just generally have more options. Although obviously the language barrier could pose a problem. I love Sheffield and I love Leeds, they're great for shopping and nightlife but really, apart from that there's not much else. Whenever I think about going back it feels like it would be a dead end. I think the general direction that the UK is going is a negative one, it's becoming very insular and I'm not sure how… (another 228 words)

Thursday 28.Aug.2014

StarStarStarStarStar (10)   Germany vs. Yorkshire by Insigna
Hi, IF I may share my own experience. I am French but married an English Man from Yorkshire, my daugher was also born in Yorkshire and we lived there for a while as well as London and Plymouth. I am now since 2000 in Munich and having had the chance of experiencing living in 3 different countries, I can safely say that Munich is the place for me and i have no intention of living my little sanctuory. Bavaria is a great place for families as life still holds its fundatemental such as family and respect. It is great to be able to let your child play outside and your windows open without fearing anything. Munich still holds this country flair which is refreshing in the world we are living today. As a teenager, my daughter was able to go out to Munich in the evening with her friends and come back… (another 598 words)
StarStarStarStar (7)   Being asked for money from beggars in DE by ruapehu
BullsFanCly, you seem to be trying to turn the thread into a comparison of the number of beggars in Germany vs. the number in other places, such as the USA (and also comparing your experiences living in the USA with those as a tourist in Germany...where you get different impressions). That's not what this thread was originally about. The OP was asking a general question about German residents' experiences with beggars in Germany.
StarStar (4)   Being asked for money from beggars in DE by Isenburg Runner
Being that I have lots of experience in this area, I think I can point out a few things or agree or disagree with alot of people. • First, I fully agree with the last comment by Mapleleafdude. • Second, I was working as a Socialworker by the Diakonie in the Bahnhofviertel in Frankfurt for 2 and a half year as a replacement for a socialworker that was beaten by our clients. I worked mainly with (prostitutes, substance abusers, homeless, psychological sick, and all beggers) • Most of the clients or beggers that were my clients, I either see in the Bahnhofsviertel or on the Zeil begging people for money, about 60 percent of them were Romanian or Bulgarian. And most of them when they went on the Zeil or walked the streets, they acted like they had a legitamate handicap. One of them got 10… (another 147 words)
StarStarStarStar (7)   Shoplifting and student visa application by Lavender Rain
He's shoplifted many times before and today had to resist the urge to steal even after being caught yesterday and being so afraid of the repercussions than he already has a serious problem that's persisted without help. Without the proper intervention, this problem can completely ruin every aspect of his young life and dim his prospects for a bright future. Kleptomania is the inability to refrain from the urge to steal items. I suggest he considers finding a therapist as soon as possible for his deviant anti-social behavior if he's truly interested in changing this long-standing behavior. People with this problem will not only steal from stores, they will steal anything they can conveniently get their hands on which makes them a danger not only to themselves, but also to… (another 1 words)
StarStarStar (6)   Bastard or bitch of the day by bubli
The bastard of the day is one of the instructors in Kletterwald (high ropes park) in HH-Volksdorf. I was on one of the medium-difficult courses when a 8-9 ys old kid climbing right before me got stuck in front of the next obstacle. Poor guy, he was really afraid, almost tears in his eyes, and couldn't (or wouldn't) continue, so he had to call the instructor for help. The bastard came to the platform and as he was getting his ropes and gadgets ready to pull the stuck kid down, one of the other kids climbing somewhere else in the forest called at him "Hallo trainer!" (that was agreed-upon signal meaning "I need help"). From then on, it went as follows (loosely translated): " #33; Every five minutes, one of those snotty kids calls 'Hallo trainer!'.… (another 137 words)
StarStarStar (5)   Renouncing US citizenship by Straightpoop
The US State Department will shortly announce in the 28 August 2014 number of the Federal Register its intention to increase the fee it charges Americans to renounce their US citizenship from the current $450 to $2,350. As justification for this rather extraordinary jump, the notice cites several factors (some of which are clearly bogus) but one of which clearly is not: "Since [the current $450 was set in 28 June 2010], demand for the service has increased dramatically. So, if you've been dawdling about getting free of Uncle Snoopy and expect to live off the reservation permanently, CLNs (Certificates of Loss of Nationality] are going to get real expensive, real soon.
StarStarStar (5)   Moving to Germany, pregnancy, insurance etc... by john g.
Good evening, Blue Sky! First of all, congratulations on your coming status in life as parents! The posters on here have advised well - IF you just arrive here and IF your wife hasn´t been publicly insured in an EU country for at least 2 of the past 5 years despite being an EU citizen, she has no access to public insurance and nor do you. IF she is currently publicly insured and can prove it in an EU country, she can come to Germany and (ok, bureaucratic ) apply as a so-called voluntary member of public insurance to start with and you can be co-insured free of charge IF your earnings are not over 395 euros a month. Take a deep breath!!! IF none of this is the reality, do NOT take this move here lightly UNLESS you are guaranteed this employee job you mention for 1,500… (another 150 words)
StarStar (4)   Moving to Germany, pregnancy, insurance etc... by batchfile
That's not how it works here. You and your wife both need health insurance. If you are thinking of taking the public health insurance you will still need to pay for that insurance. Your wife being an EU citizen gives you the right to live here if you can afford to support yourselves - as you will have contributed nothing to the social system you'll have no eligibility for unemployment benefits (unless the system has changed markedly since I arrived). Health insurance should be one of the first things to sort out - you can be charged retrospectively back to your arrival in Germany, youmight as well have the policy in hand and make best use of the excellent medical services available.
StarStar (4)   Health insurance problem, non-EU by Starshollow
ok, without being able to see what your insurance says or writes it is all a bit guesswork here.... getting legal advice is certainly something you should consider asap. I would imagine that with a degenerative auto-imune illness like MS the insurance suspects that you were ill before or new about this condition and based on this reject payments as this would be considered a pre-existing condition and thus excluded in most insurance policies. Btw: you might want to get involved in some PALEO group and see how changing your eating habbits (especially exclusion of any grain related food) can help you slow the MS process. There is a so-called "autoimune protocoll AIP " developped by others with MS and similar autoimune disturbances where a number of inflamatory foods have been excluded… (another 90 words)
StarStar (4)   Getting a passport for a German child by techgirl
Actually, she automatically has US citizenship by virtue of you, her mother, being a US citizen. It's not anything you have to apply for. The passport, on the other hand, you will have to apply for. Your daughter is already a US citizen and you may have trouble trying to bring her to the US without her having a US passport.
StarStar (4)   Getting a passport for a German child by Conquistador
Think about this- you're her mother and you're going to enter on a US passport. At the very latest, I'd assume that it sends up an immediate red flag when you try to clear immigration in the US- do you have any particular desire to be held up for hours while jet-lagged, or perhaps having her denied entry, or you fined? Your daughter has an automatic claim on US citizenship, which means you can't avoid the requirements of citizenship simply by failing to register her birth with the consulate.
StarStar (3)   Getting a passport for a German child by liebling
Yes, a full adult-style German passport is required for USA travel for German citizens. Thousands of people do this every day. Call your local Bürgeramt. They issue passports. Normally a non-present parent has to sign a form in advance saying they agree to the issuance of the passport but since you have sole custody this may be different. They can tell you in advance, and they (or their website) can list everything you need to bring with you for the passport, which must be applied for in person and with the child present. You have to have the child's birth certificate, parent's passport (US in your case - just to prove you're who you say you are, and match your ID with the birth cert). Also bring money (ours takes EC cards, too) to pay the passport fee (IIRC it was 38 EUR when… (another 30 words)
StarStar (4)   Temporary move to Germany with spouse (non CS) by Conquistador
Mine is not an expert opinion, so take it with a grain of salt, but since your husband will be here on SOFA status, I think you will have a hard time claiming family reunification with the German authorities. Furthermore, any visa issued by them would come with their conditions, and I'd be skeptical that online schooling for your kids would pass muster.
StarStar (3)   Diet support by Moondancer
Long 2 months with little weight loss, but have kept it in the 71 kg. area, with a day or two venturing to 72+kg. Vacation in Berlin, 2 birthdays to celebrate, going out to eat with the kids while by daughters boyfriend was here all meant that watching what I ate was a bit tougher to do than usual. Today though, my lovely scale said 70.8kg. Hooray for me! Beginning weight in Dec.: 84.4 kg or 186 lbs Today: 70.8kg or 156 lbs Total weight loss: 13.6 kg or 30 lbs BMI has dropped from 30 to 25.2 Really feels great to have lost 30 lbs. Have gone out and bought 2 pair of jeans as the other ones were literally falling off of me. The best part about getting these jeans, was that I only picked out these 2 pair to try on and they both fit. Can't remember doing that since I was a young woman. Flying… (another 47 words)
StarStar (3)   Washing machine broken after two years by Krieg
As far as I know there are two main reasons why the bearings will wear, the first one is too much water when starting to spin, this can be because the water does not flow out properly which can be caused by a dirty filter (you never mentioned if you are cleaning the filter regularly). And the second one because of an uneven floor and the machine is not sitting properly.
StarStar (3)   Washing machine broken after two years by Moondancer
Used my washer for 27 years with never a break down until the end. Cleaning the filter out was a must every 6 months. This does build up slime in it and if you don't clean it, the water won't drain out and you will think your washer is broken, plus everything stinks. Use the tabs which cut down on the lime/calc deposits. Just bought a new washer this year so will be interesting to see if the electric bill comes down at all since it is supposed to be energy efficient. Dishwasher, Siemens Lady 233 is over 19 years old. Never have had a problem with it, though again, I clean out the filters and have cleaned out the holes on the arms that spin around. Use the all in one tabs. Glasses are clear and no build-up of calc. Fridge made it 16 years with no problems til the end. Decided on… (another 5 words)

Wednesday 27.Aug.2014

StarStarStarStarStar (10)   Shoplifting and student visa application by 2B_orNot2B
You turned those into the most expensive carrots in your city today, cbeans You'll probably get another fright when you start reading the implied threats in the quoted legal paragraphs on the letter from the police, so don't panic. The letter will say a report has been made by *name* the manager of the REWE store that you committed an act of shoplifting and that, prior to sending it on to the public prosecutor, you are required to respond to this police enquiry. The law requires you to confirm (or correct) the details of your personal identity ie. name in full, age, place and date of birth, nationality, passport or id card number, address and occupation and hourly or monthly income. You must check those boxes and/or fill in the blanks. German law specifically does not require… (another 246 words)
StarStarStarStarStar (9)   The Vent by aqua_minie
Fucking Feminazis get on my nerves. How does a tool that can be used for self defense by young women promote rape culture? They go as far as accusing these young entrepreneurs of profiting from the rape culture all the while pointing out they're all 'notably males'! Huh? Why the even point this out? They say that we need to teach people to stop raping. Fair enough. So what are these feminists doing about that? Do they ever step away from their tablets and fancy first world comforts, and actually get involved in the community that they're so concern about? I doubt. It's like they're detached with the reality; that we live in an imperfect world where unfortunately women still get assaulted. Till the problem in resolved from grassroot, it is reasonable (and smart!)… (another 96 words)
StarStarStarStarStar (9)   Payment dispute with DB Call a Bike by Simonst
Update on this topic for those who were interested. After many conversations with DB as the issue was escalated through their customer service process, they actually treated me very well and let me off with a €20 fine. - for improper return of the bikes + 1 days rental. Waived the outstanding rental altogether. What's more they were very friendly and most people I spoke to had good English. So in the end very happy with how they treated me.
StarStarStarStar (8)   Kids spend all their free time with computers by emkay
Dear Bubli. I was very interested to read your post as I'm also feeling that my daughter, 13, is spending too much time on her iPad. She's not so much into games but watching YouTube young ladies sharing beauty tips though some of the content is about baking and charitable stuff. My first feeling is of guilt that we aren't engaging her in anything else she would be interested in. And yes, those famous words "why don't you go out on your waveboard and play with the kid across the road" do get aired often. I too remember my mum chucking me out of the house come rain or shine without a clue of my whereabouts until dinner time. But, things are different now. It seems society has pushed parents to keep our kids closer to home for their safety and parent's peace of… (another 367 words)
StarStarStar (6)   Getting a different license plate or... by 2B_orNot2B
Hi Surviving Germany It varies marginally in one or two states but, when you change address, you're supposed to re-register yourself and your vehicle/s within x (~7) days, not weeks. It's not a hanging offense but you might get an administrative fine if you leave it too long. ="Verdana, sans-serif" ="Verdana, sans-serif" ="Verdana, sans-serif" ="Verdana, sans-serif" ="Verdana, sans-serif" ="Verdana, sans-serif" ="Verdana, sans-serif" ="Verdana, sans-serif" ="Verdana, sans-serif" ="Verdana, sans-serif" ="Verdana, sans-serif" ="Verdana, sans-serif" ="Verdana, sans-serif"
StarStarStar (6)   Germany vs. Yorkshire by don_riina
I'm somewhat well known for disliking pretty much every aspect of Germany, apart from their super cheap awesome beer. I've been here about 12 years now, and frankly, the longer I am here, I just find more stuff to dislike about the place. The bloke that stocks the drinks fridge at my local Edeka for example. He's an arsehole. 6 different types of bloody lager in the fridge, and not one weissbier?!?! Should be fired for that if you ask me. Anyway. We had to move here because my (German) wife has certain medical needs, and the health service in England is simply appalling; and getting worse by all accounts. We have since had kids here. That's is where everything changes... Me? I am a grumpy English arsehole. I want to go back home to my country, to sit in a pub with… (another 162 words)
StarStarStar (5)   Germany vs. Yorkshire by Keefy
Had to attend a meeting in Leeds some years ago. It was held at the Royal Armouries Museum (which is actully a quite brilliant place). Searching around for somewhere to eat, I found a restaurant with a quite excellent "Eat All you Can for a Tenner" Indian buffet. Then your friend arrived - the Leaderine of a Hen Party. "'Ave yer got owt that's not spicy, like?" sez she. For some reason, the place became hushed, so that everyone could hear the waiter's answer. "Well, you know, there is a McDonalds just up the street, isn't it?" At which point just about everyone in the restaurant was convulsed with laughter.
StarStarStar (5)   Moving from private health insurance to public by Starshollow
No, this is, I am afraid, not possible. As self-employed you can't register as "Arbeitslos"/ALG I, because this is open only to employees as it entitles you to unemployment benefits. As a self-employed you can only register as "Arbeitssuchend". But that does not change or alter your status regarding your private health insurance, because as "Arbeitssuchend" you'll not receive any state benefits nor will you get compulsory public health insurance thru the Arbeitsamt. There are only two ways for self-employed to get back into public insurance: - you need to become compulsory insured as employee (but before you turn 55 years old only) or - you stop your self-employment for at least a months, better two months and have yourself registered as dependent family… (another 36 words)
StarStarStar (5)   Being asked for money from beggars in DE by Keefy
Berlin - most likely points where someone can be "hit" seem, in my experience anyway, to be around major tourist sights. Checkpoint Charlie is particularly bad in this respect. Reference has been made in previous posts to the "you spik Eengleesh?" ladies - I either ignore them and keep walking, answer in Polish, or give a blank but fairly hostile stare. Around where I live in southern Schöneberg, I'm rarely bothered by anyone, apart from some Jehovah's Witnesses who once managed to get into the apartment and proceeded to annoy everyone in the building. They weren't that difficult to get rid of, either - didn't need to resort to nastiness. All in all, I prefer living here to the UK. In Bristol, it was rare to walk along any shopping street without being… (another 193 words)
StarStar (4)   Being asked for money from beggars in DE by Mapleleafdude
I guess people are more surprised in Germany because by law everyone has the right to an place to live and gets money for food etc. through the government. In the US there is no safety net quit like the Northern European one. As a Canadian I was always surprised(devestated?) by the large amounts of homeless people south of the border. The USA is Canada's Mexico. :-(
StarStar (3)   Being asked for money from beggars in DE by BullsFanCly
I know I'm not in Germany, but I get the point you guys are making and wanted to splash some reality your way (from across the big pond). I live in Los Angeles. I encounter 10-20 beggars per day. And I drive to and from work! If I walk anywhere, that number goes up. They are on the Freeway exits, at every major intersection, under overpasses, grocery stores, pharmacies and of course liquor stores. And don't even think of going downtown, the number will go up to 50 or higher, depending on how long you are there. If you happen down skid row, you could see 100's. Yes, many of these are (just) homeless, but the ones I'm counting have signs with their plight asking for help. So, while I know it feels in some way more "in your face" in Germany (we can just look the… (another 25 words)
StarStar (3)   Being asked for money from beggars in DE by GeoJet
The most annoying are those who bother you when you're eating. I give them an upraised palm (the 'stop' kind, not the 'Hitler greeting') and a firm 'Nein'. If they persist, they get a sharp ' #39;. I had a rather amusing encounter yesterday afternoon. A healthy, able-bodied Romani-looking type - a bit corpulent, actually - approached me and raised a worn take-away coffee cup in my direction, apparently hoping the loose change would fly out of my pocket and into his receptacle. I just shook my head and continued. After another couple of metres, I heard a clearly Eastern European voice admonishing the young beggar to "geh arbeiten".
StarStar (3)   Curry night - every Wednesday evening in Munich by MadAxeMurderer
Stop dressing it up Sara. Walmerroad the curry dictator was deposed in a vindaloo coup. Guvnor took over, until driven insane by the recent curry war. Enview has bravely stepped in, but we expect him to be a bhajee casualty in the near future. It's like "Defenses against the dark arts" teaching. Noone survives longterm.
StarStar (3)   Jokes by kaffeemitmilch
An Australian ventriloquist visiting New Zealand, walks into a small village and sees a local sitting on his porch patting his dog. He figures he'll have a little fun. Ventriloquist: "G'day Mate! Good looking dog, mind if I speak to him?" Villager: "The dog doesn't talk, you stupid Aussie." Ventriloquist: "Hello dog, how's it going mate?" Dog: "Doin' all right" Villager: (look of extreme shock) Ventriloquist: "Is this villager your owner?" (pointing at the villager) Dog: "Yep" Ventriloquist: "How does he treat you?" Dog: "Real good. He walks me twice a day, feeds me great food and takes me to the lake once a week to play." Villager: (look of utter disbelief) Ventriloquist: "Mind… (another 109 words)
StarStar (3)   Moving to Heidelberg from the U.S. by kato
Well, technically you can bike in from anywhere If you or he plan to bike at night, i'd rule out Dossenheim (or beyond that, i.e. Schriesheim). The route going that way isn't particularly a safe thing - unlit for at least one kilometer, and going either through an underpass and by some halfway decrepit old commercial buildings or through dark, only half-open fields with people busy stealing fruits and crops or cars taking illegal shortcuts at high speeds. I'd rule out Ladenburg for similar reasons - which would be an easy 20 minutes by bike along the north shore of the Neckar otherwise. Doing it the other way around, districts from which biking isn't really possible would be Ziegelhausen (uphill; the areas by the river would be okay), Schlierbach, Emmertsgrund and Boxberg… (another 100 words)

Tuesday 26.Aug.2014

StarStarStarStarStar (9)   Being sized up for income/assets when dating by dessa_dangerous
You'd get asked about what you're paying in rent in DC because people are interested. In New York, San Francisco or anywhere else where rents have skyrocketed in recent decades (including my hometown Seattle) it's not an uncommon question and is genuinely unlikely to be a way of finding out how much you make. People are curious about rent fluctuations in their area even if they are not currently looking to move house. I think most people assume that a foreigner working in DC is earning good in the first place... the US is not a place where you often find Europeans working at Taco Bell and in DC/the East Coast even less so. Men have been choosing their partners based on her looks, sexuality and willingness to clean up after his messes since the dawn of time. Now we live in the era… (another 23 words)
StarStar (3)   Being sized up for income/assets when dating by Metall
I've been sized up by German *mothers* of partners within weeks after dating started. When I was a poor student, a wealthy mother ordered me to come drink coffee with her at the Bayerische Hof, one the top hotels in Munich. She verbally created a sort of Excel sheet balancing my and her child's assets and weaknesses against each other. I barely squeaked through to have permission to continue dating, based on what I was studying. Shoot.
StarStarStarStar (8)   Being asked for money from beggars in DE by PES
I hate to judge beggars, but I seldom give them anything. But when I see someone rummaging through trash bins for returnable bottles, I often give them 5 or more euros. They must really be struggling, but at least they are trying to make it. Again, I shouldn't judge.
StarStarStar (6)   Being asked for money from beggars in DE by nina_glyndwr
In a similar fashion, if I see them going through bins/trash cans for scraps of food, I give them a 10 euro note and hand it over with the word, "Kaufen Sie sich etwas Warmes zum Essen." Also, if they are begging for a euro or two to get into an overnight shelter, then I usually cave in and give them something like 2 or 3 euros. I think how I would feel in that situation. But often, I give stuff to the monks who feed the homeless. I gave them my fridge-freezer last year - too big for me. Now they can keep food in their for their evening bus. At Christmas time, I go to somewhere like Kik and buy socks, underpants, scarves and hats and drop them off to the monks who then hand them out to the homeless. When I do this, I feel that I needn't hand out money to every single beggar. Edit:… (another 18 words)
StarStarStar (5)   Being asked for money from beggars in DE by Anna66
How often per day? It depends on where I am. In Darmstadt, Approached maybe once or twice during the day Frankfurt, more often- More than twice Berlin, more often than in Frankfurt Where most encountered? Train Station Outside shops Tourist Areas Most annoying? In Berlin, near checkpoint charlie. A rude woman who tried to play on sympathy by making out she was from Bosnia and a refugee, when she clearly wasn't. She had a sign written in English clearly written for tourists who had no idea about the Bosnian war. Strangest place? Whilst eating outside a shop by a cafeteria a woman approached me. I normally am quite generous giving to charity etc... and often I buy beggars food or drink. I am reluctant to give money as many may sadly just buy drugs or alcohol. The saddest case I saw… (another 168 words)
StarStarStarStar (8)   Kids spend all their free time with computers by LeonG
I grew up before computers and I used to stay in and read books while all the other kids played outside. As long as they are not staying up all night on the computer and flunking out of school, is it a problem? You say they sometimes misbehave and get a computer ban. Sounds like normal kids to me.
StarStarStar (6)   Kids spend all their free time with computers by rodisi
Extremely sad but yes, that's how it is. Drive through any village during the holidays and see how many children are out kicking a ball or how many are on the swings in the playgrounds. IMHO it is the parents' fault. What a great idea to give them these lovely 'toys' (approximately €1,000 each in your case) where they can sit in a corner and leave the parents alone. So often the excuse is given that all the others have them - well, we don't want ours to be any different, let them be zombified also. Recently, my nephew was given an iPhone against the father's wishes. He thought that the boy spent enough time playing games on his laptop. Now, he can play games wherever he is. My son (a long time gamer) disagreed, he thinks that computer games have many positive features.… (another 68 words)
StarStarStar (5)   Kids spend all their free time with computers by Mapleleafdude
I spent a lot of time I front of the computer back in the day and still do today. The trick is to learn(or show) that designating times is important. My kids (7,9 and 10) currently get 2x30min per weekday for "electronic" toys that includes a wii, Xbox, iPads and PC. Naturally when they get older we will expand the time. I love playing games with them and sometimes my wife also joins in My approach might be a little loose but we are in the 21st century and nothing is as it was. Edit: and each has a 3DS they play a lot of games together with all platforms. I have also taught them chess and we also play board games.
StarStar (4)   Kids spend all their free time with computers by Mapleleafdude
Last tahm I suggested we takes ah horse buggy to mahket my pa ga'me a whoopin and said "boy! We will walk with these legs the loard gave us and not some moadan devils wheeled contraption".
StarStarStar (6)   Moving to Germany in next few weeks by pog451
Despite my gut feeling that Im feeding a troll here, you do realise you cant just roll up in Germany, pitch a tent any old where and live in it? Living in a tent will only be rent and/or hassle free if you pitch it in a friends garden (and then you could borrow their sofa). Any decent sized city will have a hostel or Jugendherberge (youth hostel) which will be nearly as cheap as (and much more comfortable) than living in a tent on an official campsite. You could even try something like air bnb. Living rough anywhere in or near a city in Germany will expose you to hassle from the other people already living rough there, hassle from the police and the risk of not impressing future landlords by turning up for a viewing looking and smelling like you live under a bridge. Oh, and the summer is… (another 14 words)
StarStar (4)   Marrying a German - advice for an American by mkwiede
It's important to learn the language and the culture but I am not German. I have my own culture and language that I want to keep alive as well. So I hang out with expats from my home country to discuss American things, I read this website to discuss and learn things in English. I try to keep up with my OV shows and movies, I also speak to my child in English and do activities in English to make sure she has a great command of her mother's language. I really wish I could be one of those people who totally integrate and do all things German but I can't. I moved here when I was 36. I had a life and a career that I lived and loved. I met a man that I loved and like the Canadian when he asked me to go to Europe I said yes. Did I think about the fact that learning German would be hard?… (another 159 words)
StarStar (4)   Tips and discussions on training a dog by miinerva
Before trying to give some advice I have a few questions. You say that your dog stays alone without any major problems. Can you please add some more details in this regard? How is he kept when being alone (running free, closed in a room, crated etc) and does he show any sign even the smallest signs of discomfort or anxiety when he is alone? Many times, urinating can function as comfort for a dog that has separation anxiety. Sometimes this may also be the only sign he will give. One way to try and figure this out is to look at the "urinating pattern". Does he urinate when you are at home or only when you have left him home alone. Does he urinate if you close him into a room and leave him alone there for a while? If so, it could be separation anxiety that is the root cause of his urinating… (another 710 words)
StarStar (4)   Getting an Asperger's/autism diagnosis by MadAxeMurderer
Don't be in such a rush to sympathise with an Aspie. They tend to be quite proud of their diagnosis, and the intellectual benefits it brings. No advice I'm afraid on getting diagnosed. Apparently only 1 in 10 Aspergers are women so you're double unusual. However if you score strong hits on the characteristics you probably are.
StarStar (4)   Personal data for Techniker Krankenkasse by arunadasi
Is this the "rant about Techniker Krankenkasse" thread? If so I'll post this here as a general warning, rather than start a new thread or post in the Vent. TKK is supposed to be one of the best KKs, and in most cases it probably is. But once you start to get old, with all the accompanying risks of needing new joints, or heart attacks, etc., it might not be a bad idea to switch, just in case you might need/want a Reha. I work in a hospital; we arrange Rehas for all kinds of patients. I do the orthopedic and cardial departments. And whenever I get a patient with TKK I groan. And all three of us are pretty much fed up. No other KK makes such a drama out of a simple Reha application. For instance: -- They take days to approve. Barmer and AOK, for instance, do same-day approval;… (another 231 words)
StarStar (3)   German Integration Course in Bonn by 2B_orNot2B
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StarStar (3)   English and American studies by aqua_minie
I'm not sure why it baffles you that an ESL teaching institute prefers a native English speaker? BTW, I did mention in my post that some employers clearly mention if a teaching post is open for non-native speakers. And again, it isn't demonstrably a German habit, rather a standard hiring policy worldwide for a job that calls for a special language skill. I agree, however, that several people who learn a new language at a later stage in their life can achieve a native level proficiency. I know plenty. Mind you, there is no such thing as a 'NATIVE Indian English speaker'. Sure, there are exceptions if they're born and raised or lived for several years in a native English speaking country. But attending school in India and receiving instruction in English is far from being… (another 113 words)

Monday 25.Aug.2014

StarStarStarStarStar (10)   Watching the beheading video by NoBullJim
Really? Do you not think the training involves this. They stopped showing the videos of peeling potatoes a long time ago. They are no longer afraid of KP, but IED's.......yep, very afraid....beheadings?...yep, very afraid. But brave, give credit where credit is due. Sometimes I wonder if you write random on the white part of a deck of cards, and deal yourself those random cards when you post here. But on the other hand, I'm not convinced you have a full deck.
StarStarStar (6)   Visa invitation obligations by Krieg
If you signed a VE (Verpflichtungserklaerung) then it is serious business. You are financially responsible for the invited person so long he/she is in Germany. If the person does not have appropiate health insurance and becomes sick, you will pay for the bills, if the person damages other people's property you will pay, if the person engages into buying goods or services and does not pay you will, etc, etc. You get the idea. Plus a VE can't be cancelled, it will be valid so long the Visa is valid. That's why you NEVER sign a VE for a person you are not really close to. P.S., And the most serious headache, if the person overstays the Visa and refuses to leave the country you will have to pay for all costs for sending him/her back home.
StarStarStar (5)   ALS Ice Bucket Challenge by sarabyrd
Attached imageDamp, yet triumphant. My toes are still tingling. Our office (app. 30 people) did the challenge in front of a monument in the center of Munich, meaning that about 70 tourist cameras were trained on us as well. EDIT: The office was very kind and provided crushed ice instead of ice cubes
StarStarStar (5)   Bahn.de won't accept passport as ID... by kthy
I can assure you that ticket controllers do not care one bit whether you are legally in Germany. They care about people buying one ticket online and then printing 20 copies for all of their friends to travel on.
StarStar (4)   Being sized up for income/assets when dating by mako1
If they are not impressed by your ability to get an unbefristet research position at a german university as a foreigner, then I am not sure what would impress them. There are perhaps a handfull of such positions at a uni, unless you are a professor (in which case I would out of professional jealousy act unimpressed).
StarStar (4)   Being sized up for income/assets when dating by Keefy
My new album The Fuckups I've Made is due to be released shortly.... Was screwed over in the UK by a second wife who thought: "Hmmm! He works for a University! His parents have a villa in Spain! Yummy, yummy, yummy"...... (the UK expression for such a person is "gold-digger")... Well to cut a long story short, having gone through the throes of psychotherapy following the painful break-up of marriage No 2 to Her Mentioned Above I moved to Berlin on my own. Just loved the place since my first visit (1979). 18 months down the road having finally moved here in 2007 I met J... . First and foremost, we rather liked being in each other's company. I had no idea what she "was worth", and all she knew about me (financially speaking) is that I owned… (another 28 words)
StarStar (3)   Being sized up for income/assets when dating by HEM
Thats possibly just a little too late in the sequence - after all if two people are throwing their lot in together you will both want (or should want) to know if there are any major liabilities etc that one is "buying into". When I met the girl who 25 years ago became my wife I was living in Germany on a UK university salary with a rolling 3-year contract. That wasn't a lot! I could take care of myself but not very much more. She had a limited contract at DESY (öffentliche Dienst) and thus was also not wallowing in the money. Of course we did not ferret in each other's salary slips but we knew we could afford our plans - which included my looking for a job in German industry.
StarStar (3)   Being sized up for income/assets when dating by Joe
Couple of observations (will probably get negs but who cares its the truth) leaving aside the usual boy/girl stuff: 1 - There is a sizeable portion of the local population (as in any country) who assume foriegners are by definition worse paid or else tend to be only comfortable with foriegners as long as they are worse paid.... 2 - Many germans are just plain rude when it comes to this kind of discussion. Many southern germans (from the villages) tend to be very direct. However its not a cultural thing as such its just rudeness/tactlessness and probably the best put down is too point out that it is rude in polite society (since self same are usually also terrible snobs but also self conscious)....
StarStar (3)   People called these photos "Pornography" by dessa_dangerous
I'm not sure what should be so much more shameful about it than a picture of you as a kid in the bath. Like, literally every human born in the industrialized world from the second half of the twentieth century on has at least one, maybe a few. Husband liked to run around without pants until he was three or four, there are considerable records testifying to his affinity for running around in a shirt and sandals and nothing else, but they are German, and he doesn't even seem particularly mortified when his mother shows them to whichever vague acquaintances happen to be in the immediate vicinity. Sure, in this day and age it's not a great idea to publish photographs of your children--regardless of their state of dress--in any place where they can be accessed by anybody other than… (another 117 words)
StarStar (3)   Finding friends in Hamburg by farmerandy
How freakin paranoid are you, esham? Lookit, if you have had a bad experience at the Hamburg meetup, then that´s a real shame. But I would suggest it is, as you regularly display here on the boards, because YOU are a total twat. Not because of any of the people involved in the meetup. @simplyme13 - The hamburg meetup has been going for years and Tor has been organising it for ages. It is good fun with good people. Get out there with an open mind and have fun. If you follow esham´s way of thinking, that bus driver is going to get real sick of you real quick. My only regret about the hamburg meetup was that me and lilplatinum missed out on catching up for a night out on the town by a handful of minutes. That would have been atomic
StarStar (3)   Pleeeze help me by GeoJet
Hi everyone I'm arrivin in berlin in several seeks but have a question about slimming. I've been smoking crack for three months and have lost 16 kilograms while smoking it. I have a crack free period coming to an end and want to do another course. Is there anywhere in Berlin where I can buy crack legally, such as a weight loss clinic or slimming club? Thank in advance for any help or advice geojet
StarStar (3)   Poor customer service in Germany by Smaug
Anna66, sorry to hear about your bad experience. If you've done an "Überweisung" you cannot reverse it. The most you can do is ask the bank to ask the recipient to return the money. I'd just wait until the online store complains about you not having paid (assuming they think you haven't because they couldn't match your order with your payment on account of the wrong reference number). Fax them or email them a print out of the transfer with a note indicating that the reference is wrong.
StarStar (3)   Tourist visa extension for visiting family members by engelchen
If your mother overstays her visa she faces a fine and will probably never receive a visa for Germany again. Change her ticket to make sure she leaves before her visa expires.
StarStar (3)   RIP Lord Attenborough by ginga
This is from the Chelsea FC site: Chelsea Football Club is deeply saddened to learn of the passing of our Life President Lord Attenborough, CBE at the age of 90. He led a long and successful life and always found time for the things in life he loved most, one of which was Chelsea FC. Renowned throughout the world for his work in cinema which honoured him with awards for acting, directing and producing, football - and Chelsea in particular - was never far from his thoughts. His personality was woven into the tapestry of the club over seven decades. He was a consistent force for good at the club, even in dark times. He was a club director during the glamorous, trophy-winning seasons of the early 1970s and a decade later helped keep the club at Stamford Bridge when our stadium came under… (another 795 words)
StarStar (3)   Love, politics, beer & oblivion by NoBullJim
Ha! Your killing me. You are really not all that. To discount normal tourist's trying to enjoy the sights of Germany and comment about their attire is sad.....actually, you are sad. In a small nutshell, I think your a total ass hat. Get over it and bring your stories back where they are welcome . Not saying other's here are as opinionated as me, but you hit a serious negative nerve of mine, So your comments judging and basically disrespecting the very much welcomed tourists of the world is unacceptable. Hell, you're one yourself eh? Don't be a total Ass-munch. I wonder what they think of you? Maybe you should ask? Oh wait, don't. Edit: do you own Virgin Airlines? If so, why do you have your picture taken in the Men's room?