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Posts posted by frankiep

  1. Finance/Sales reporting/business development. I left a decent job in this field for what seemed like a better job in the same field about a year ago. From the first day though I have been doing none of this. Instead I have been dealing solely with IT issues (backend system adapters, web services, interfaces, system architecture, etc.) and my boss/employer justifies this by saying that this will ultimately be used support salesmen and therefore I am working in a business development/sales role. I am totally disgusted and about to have a nervous breakdown because I spend 9-10 hours a day under incredible pressure to perform pure IT tasks that I know absolutely nothing about and that I have no interest in. I am even starting to worry about my health as I now frequently get bad headaches and have started have back and neck problems. I have been spending most of my free time since December looking for something, anything, else and have gotten nowhere. About a hundred applications sent out to companies all over Germany and I have had 2 interviews and 0 offers (have fun trying to explain to potential employers why you want to leave your current position after being there less than a year). Of course I am all over Xing, Linkedin, Experteer, etc. but have found those sites to be about as useful and productive as Facebook. So, where are these plentiful jobs I have been hearing so much about, because I am literally at the point where I will do just about anything in order to avoid having a stroke where I am now.



    I would start looking for a new job too. You don't have to put up with a terrible boss and job! There are many good German companies! Not all our full of mobbing and harassment. I am sure if you look around you will be able to find a good job!


    I have to ask - where exactly are these good German companies that are hiring people? I am in a similar situation. Awful job where every task I am required and expected to accomplish has nothing to do with my background, education, experience, nor does it even come close to corresponding to what I was hired for. So I am just wondering where these good jobs are since I have been spending almost all of my free time since before Christmas looking for and applying to companies and have yet to even come close to landing something. I am honestly asking - is it just me or is the current job market really that bad?


  3. In the end, you are the only one who can make you happy. Now I understand that in every relationship there needs to be compromise from both sides. Deciding what kind of car to buy, where to go on vacation, and whose family to visit during the holidays are things that everyone in a successful relationship has to compromise over. However, for huge, potentially life altering decisions such as what country to live in, compromising only leads to bitterness and resentment since neither of you are getting what you want. I just don't believe that you can compromise over something that will invariably affect every single aspect of your life, and picking up and moving to another country will certainly do that.


    Basically, it appears that what it all comes down to is that you have the following options:

    1. You both compromise and move to another city within Germany resulting in you still being unhappy because it is not the US, and your wife being unhappy because she is away from her family.

    2. Your wife compromises and moves to the US with you resulting in you being happy and your wife being unhappy.

    3. You compromise and stay put resulting in your wife being happy and you being unhappy.


    I am sorry to sound so harsh but from reading through your posts on this thread it appears that there really is no reconciling your wishes and the wishes of your wife. It also sounds like you already know this and are here looking for 'permission' to do what makes you happy. Like I said, I don't believe it is possible to successfully compromise on huge, life altering decisions like this, nor is it smart to even try. It's obvious that your wife has made the decision that she absolutely wants to stay in Germany no matter what. The question you need to ask yourself now is just how important this issue is to you. If you feel that you can only be happy moving back to the US, then you need to be prepared to say goodbye to your wife. This is YOUR decision now and not your wife's so ask yourself what is more important to you.


  4. Back when I was in army basic training, my first sergeant's name was First Sergeant Ruff, and my commanding officer's name was Captain Faggott. On the sign in front of our barracks was the name of the company. Underneath it said:

    1SG RUFF



  5. So Bavaria, which has an economy heavily dependent on automobiles, heavy engineering, and consumer electronics - all of which must be exported to countries all over the world - wants to become independent and turn itself into a landlocked country without any natural seaports or access to the ocean. Sounds like a great idea!


  6. I don't mean to somehow offend or bother anyone with this post, but I have to ask if there are people out there that actually like living in Stuttgart. I am referring specifically to single expats. The reason I am asking is because I have lived in other cities in Germany (Frankfurt, Heidelberg) and have spent significant amounts of time in other cities/towns in Germany. In each place I have been it was never really that difficult to find inviting places to spend time and to meet new people. However after being in Stuttgart now for almost 5 months I have completely given up on finding anything to like about this "city". I think it could be a pleasant enough place for families with kids, but for single people in their early/mid 30s it just seems as if this city has absolutely nothing to offer.


    Am I crazy and/or just missing something, or are there others (expat, single, 30-35) who view Stuttgart as being a mind numbingly boring, lifeless city?

    And if I am missing something then please be so kind as to let me know what and where it is! :)





    actually, I love all the different dialects in Germany, they can be so confusing, but hilariously funny at times



    For the most part I like the different dialects. However since moving to Stuttgart I have come to absolutely hate Schwäbisch. Whenever I hear this awful dialect it just sounds to me like the person is completely drunk and has lost the ability to speak properly.


  8. Besides O'Reilly's and Biddy Early's, does anyone know of any other places. I was at Biddy Early's a few weeks ago and they had golf on. When I asked them if they could put the NFL on I was looked at like I was some kind of an asshole. So if anyone knows of any other places that show the NFL please share :)


  9. The way I see it, if you can't figure out how to fill out a form or two to get an ID card which is readily available to everyone who wants one, then maybe you shouldn't be involved in voting to determine the direction of the world's only superpower and largest economy. I mean, come on, it's the 21st century - there is no reason why anyone who wants to get an ID card to vote can't.


  10. You have absolutely nothing to worry. It is completely unreasonable to expect to be able to easily converse in German after just a few weeks. As others here have said, learning in a classroom is completely different from actual everyday life.


    Besides, German is a very difficult language to learn. Remember what Mark Twain said:

    "My philological studies have satisfied me that a gifted person ought to learn English (barring spelling and pronouncing) in 30 hours, French in 30 days, and German in 30 years."


    Now, it certainly won't take 30 years as Twain jokes, but you have to give yourself at least a year of regularly conversing in German before you start feeling really comfortable. You'll get there!



    You're German but your parents are Democrats? Are they on the Bavarian ballot or what?


    This jumped right out at me as well. I smell something.

    Oh those evil republicans.


    Well, it cuts both ways. Back in 2008 when I was still living in the US, I was working at the US headquarters of an international pharma company where most of the people - including the CFO - where completely, head over heels in love with Obama and had no problem talking openly about how stupid some people were for not loving him as well. I was a McCain supporter but make it a point to never talk about politics in inappropriate places (such as at work). I did think that it was in extremely poor taste and very inconsiderate to speak so often and be so confrontational about politics in the office but I didn't let it bother me and just went about doing my job. Well, one Friday the CFO, his assistant, and I stayed late to finish working on something and we all wound up leaving the building and walking to the parking lot together. It just so happened that I got to my car first and was ahead of them in driving to the exit - where the McCain bumper sticker on my car let them know for the first time who I supported. The following Monday I went to work and about an hour later was called into the CFOs office and told that this global company, which basically prints money, could no longer afford to keep me and that I had until the end of the day to gather all of my things and turn over anything I was working on.


    But yeah, only republicans are hysterical, close-minded douchebags.



    from the original poster:in my view, the shit has been hitting the fan for years in the USA, unless we assume that school/church/temple/cinema mass shootings is normal.And when the shit does go down, would it not be better to be in a country that has a social safety net, and not a bunch of wackos armed to the teeth. Germany is by no means perfect, but the problem is the US thinks they are (American Exceptionalism...). Lots of people I know in the US think it is going down the tubes (the US, that is), there is a pervasive sense of pessimism in the air.The benefits of German citizenship are more than voting, there is also the ability to work in any EU country. To my knowledge, no country allows US nationals to work without going through the work visa channels (and yes, there are barriers to EU citizens working in other EU countries, but they are certainly less stringent). And travelling with a German passport is certainly easier than a US passport (India charges us gringoes more, cuba problems back home...). We are statistically rich but the paltry benefits that come from a US passport and citizenship are laughable, unless one has enough money to buy an election.that said, some other friends said the Schwabs want proof you are no longer a citizen of your previous country, so the question was answered from the first or second response. However, no one has actually the commented from the experience of a US national giving up citizenship.Weird Germany, How come when there is a set of double doors into a public building, one side is always locked?


    If I could give this post 10 greens, I would.



    If the shit hits the fan.... then, I stay with my husband. I will not run back to America for protection. Plus, I am thinking that America is becoming more and more unsafe. DDBug, this third party only works with the Italian Embassy. Are you looking for German citizenship? I can see if they can refer someone....I do have family in the US. My main purpose for keeping dual citizenship. But, I have an issue with the US wanting to see my husband's tax info, as he is a dual citizen of Italy and Germany. And if he were to refuse, they would fine me, causing me to renounce if I do not accept their terms. The US is now having to deal with Americans seeking citizenship to move money out of the US due to changing tax issues, so they are in the process of making it harder and costing you more. The sooner you complete your process, the better, as I don't see that they will want to make it easier in the near future.


    This one as well



    Hi Reneelovesgreen, I've been doing my US tax return for years and I do not include my husbands income. I forget which form it is, maybe 1040A (I'm not at home just now), I check the box for married filing separately and where it asks you to enter spouse’s full name all I write on it is "N/A - spouse is a foreign natl." End-of. I've never been asked about his income. He would flat out refuse anyway and frankly I respect that. Did the IRS actually demand to see your husband's income/foreign tax records?


    Well, I hate to break it to you, but as far as I know you are breaking the law. If the IRS were to audit you would be severely penalized for not annually filing an FBAR (Report of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts). If you have any financial accounts together with your husband here in Germany, the IRS will then see this and begin to dig into him as well.


    Then there is this unbelieveably arrogant and intrusive new tax law which is set to take effect shortly: FATCA


    For an overview and for ease of understanding I have provided the wikipedia link, but you can find the full details on the IRS website. Pay close attention to passage stating how many foreign banks and brokerages have already begun refusing US citizens as customers and, in some cases, closing accounts of US customers they already had. Here's another example of the increasing impossibility of dealing with the IRS. When the details of these new reporting requirements were released, the IRS asked foreign banks and foreign governments for their feedback and concerns. The univeral feedback was that the requirements were far too intrusive and expensive to implement and that they would violate numerous privacy laws in a lot of different countries. The US government's response to this was essentially that they should all just shut their mouths and do what they are told since the US is the greatest country in the world and that they should consider themselves highly privileged to be allowed to do business with them. The response to US citizens living in other countries who have already starting having difficulty finding financial institutions which will take them on as customers has been equally disgusting - they have essentially been told that they are all criminals who are trying to avoid paying taxes and that they should just shut up and live with their misguided decision to not live in the greatest country on earth.


    Another thing to think about is your kids. Let's say you are a US citizen but haven't lived in the US for the last 20 years. Your kids will be born US citizens and, even though they have never set foot in the US, will be subject to all of the same IRS requirements as someone born, raised, and living in the US. Now let's say that your kids chose German citizenship over US citizenship when they turn 18. They would still have to pay half the value of all assets you leave to them after you die because you were a US citizen.


    I would strongly recommend that any US citizen living abroad, and who has no intentions of ever living in the US again, to give up their US citizenship as soon as possible since it really makes absolutely no sense to hold on to it.



    Hmmm... not true if you like to eat authentic East Asian food though. You need to search for the import shops that specialize in certain countries -- i.e. the "Asian food" Vietnamese importers don't have as good of a selection of Chinese ingredients and spices as the ones managed by Chinese or Taiwanese; same is also true for Indian ingredients. And most of those items cannot be found in German grocery stores (or standard American ones for that matter). And that stuff they try to pass off as Mexican food in German supermarkets is just sad.


    That's my point though. More "exotic" foods from places like East Asia and India are not usually found in most US supermarkets either. For these you have to go to specialty shops - just like in the US. As far as Mexican food, the ingredients and spices are all there and it is definitely possible to find them and make whatever dish you desire without much difficulty. Sure, you will probably not find them in ready to eat packages like in the US but you can still make it yourself. For example, since coming here I could never find a decent salsa so I decided to just buy the ingredients and make it myself. Didn't take long at all and tastes just as good or better than what I can buy ready-made in the US - and without the added chemicals and preservatives.


  14. It always makes me shake my head when I see these posts complaining about German food and German supermarkets. I don't know what the problem is since I have never had much of a problem finding supermarkets with good quality and a large selection. And if a "regular" supermarket isn't good enough then I would recommend going to one of the many bio-supermarkets which are not at all hard to find. Places like Tegut and Alnatura have great selections and very good quality. Of course, if you are more concerned with saving a few Euro and are shopping at places like Aldi then that is your biggest mistake right there.


    Finding ingredients for whatever you want to cook isn't rocket science either. I don't know what exactly you are looking for that you can't find, but I am fairly certain that ingredients and spices which you know from the US are available here as well. The thing is - and here's the secret - the word for it is probably much different than what you are used to. It probably has different packaging too. If all else fails, corner one of the employees at the supermarket and ask them for what you are looking for. There have been times where I got all frustrated because I couldn't find what I was looking for because I expected it to be in a certain section, only to ask and be told that it is in an entirely different section.


    None of this matters though if your definition of "good" food is the chemical and additive filled junk food that takes up three quarters of most supermarkets in the US.


  15. 33 year old man here. Originally from the US but have been living in Germany for the past 3 years. I just moved to Stuttgart (Bad Cannstatt) last week and would like to meet some people here as well. PM me if interested in getting together sometime for a beer or coffee.



    4. Prepare yourself for the directness of the language. In Britain we ask people to do things and are very wary of our manners, and we may ask them in a roundabout way. For example, "could you possibly do me a favour please, if you have the time?" Whereas in German, the niceties are neither a requirement, nor are they built into the language. They'd just say "du musst mir ein Gefallen tun" (you must do me a favour). Also, don't expect a thank-you when you do it. Please and thank-yous are rife in spoken English, but not so in German. Again, this isn't that they're rude or obnoxious, it's just not German culture. (Note: it's not that they won't say please or thank-you at all, because they do, but they say it far less often than one would in English. This took me a lot of getting used to).


    After years of living here and speaking the language at an almost fluent level, I continue to have problems coming to terms with this. I can't tell you how many times I have struggled to say something in German just as I would say it in English - in an indirect, polite, and ambiguous manner - only to wind up sounding like a complete moron. My native English speaking sensibility still has problems coming to terms with it being acceptable in German to be very direct without having to add a bunch of niceties to what I am saying. Just remember that English is a language for subtlety, and that German is a language for making statements and giving orders.