"Untranslatable" German words

145 posts in this topic

Waschbeckenunterschrank

 

i was trying to tell my mom that we bought a new one and couldn’t think of a translation 

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8 hours ago, LukeSkywalker said:

In Bavaria the word Zugereister is often heard.

More like "Zugroaster"

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On 1/30/2019, 11:33:59, fraufruit said:

Cabinet under the sink? :rolleyes:

 

Sink cabinet? Like there's gonna be a cabinet over the sink?

 

"Exit to the left in the direction of travel" - yeah, thanks, I was about to jump out on the left in the direction we came from.

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4 hours ago, sos-the-rope said:

 

Sink cabinet? Like there's gonna be a cabinet over the sink?

 

 

Actually I've had what I'd call a cabinet over the sink in the U.S. and in Germany. 

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On 30.1.2019, 23:33:59, fraufruit said:

Cabinet under the sink? :rolleyes:

 

To me, a sink is in the kitchen, and a wash basin in the bathroom, so a Waschbeckenunterschrank would be a bathroom cupboard under the wash basin.

Or to refine that a bit, a vanity unit with wash basin.

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Fremdschämen...I know what it is and Nicole used it the other day! In English?

Vicarious embarrassment...seen that...but doesn´t sound like something you´d say down the pub!

 

Remembering an American buddy; " German has great nouns but lousy verbs! ":P

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1 hour ago, john g. said:

Fremdschämen...

 

I think you need a portmanteau for this one: "Shamepathy:D

 

 

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14 hours ago, Techsmex said:

Backpfeifengesicht

 

trump-mean-860x430.jpg

 

I never paid attention to this branch of German vocabulary before, but does it mean something like "f@rt face"?

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20 hours ago, JN53 said:

 

Actually I've had what I'd call a cabinet over the sink in the U.S. and in Germany. 

 

That's called a medicine cabinet.

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52 minutes ago, sos-the-rope said:

 

That's called a medicine cabinet.

 Oh, that's right. Thanks for the reminder. 

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56 minutes ago, john g. said:

Face like the back of a bus!

Isn't "face like a slapped @rse" closer linguistically, or "face like a bull dog chewing a wasp" (or the same dog, "licking p:ss off a nettle") in terms of accuracy? 

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I understand it to mean "face that's begging to be punched"  

 

which is particularly apt with this example

 

I actually worked with a guy who had a Backpfeifengesicht.  I can't explain why I wanted to slap him every time I saw him - it had nothing to do with his face, in particular, more his aura - but I fully grasped the nuances of the word after that experience.   Normally if I don't like someone at first it eventually passes, as I can find SOMETHING to like about everyone once I get to know them even a little bit.  But this guy...nope.  Still wanted to punch him.

 

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