Language Shortcuts: Foreign Words for Busy People

English is fabulous, but it doesn’t have a word for everything. Some concepts can be expressed better, or at least faster, in another language.Here’s some shortcuts and curiosities from French, German, Spanish and Swedish: Y’allIn English, if you want to talk informally to a bunch of people at once, how can you address them? You’ve got “you”, or maybe “you guys” or maybe “y’all” (accent … Continue reading Language Shortcuts: Foreign Words for Busy People

Thinking of Living Abroad? 4 Books to Read

Here’s two modern classics and two contemporary books from people who found temporary homes in Europe. Each book gives a flavour of the local language, illuminates the culture and history, and lets you imagine how it would be if you started over in a new land… George Orwell, Down and Out in Paris and London This was one of my favourite books as a teenager … Continue reading Thinking of Living Abroad? 4 Books to Read

The Language Phrasebook Millenials Actually Need

Traditional phrasebooks don’t reflect life in 2019 so here’s some small talk for our era… “Ist deine Wohnung so groß wie ein Kühlschrank oder pendelst du drei Stunden pro Tag?” Is your apartment the size of a refrigerator or do you commute three hours a day?  “¿Quieres destruir los medios de producción?” Do you want to destroy the means of production? “Scheisse, was hat er gerade getwittert?” Shit, what has he tweeted now? “No, no puedo comprar una casa, como demasiado aguacates.” No, I can’t buy a house, I eat too many avocados. “Ich ziehe … Continue reading The Language Phrasebook Millenials Actually Need

Delving into Denglisch

English can be found everywhere in modern German. It varies depending on location, environment and person, but you regularly hear things like “sorry”, “happy”, and “das Meeting”. This is perfect, right – the more English that gets absorbed into German, the less vocabulary you need to be understood. The catch, though, to this linguistic invasion, is the homegrown Denglisch which has to be reinterpreted. Here’s … Continue reading Delving into Denglisch