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Sunday, January 7, 2007

Postcard from Stockholm

posted by on January 7 at 9:53 AM

I’m sitting in a Swedish 7-11, which happens to have internet access. I’m on tour with two young American bands, the Clorox Girls and Holy Ghost Revival, a Seattle group recently signed to a Columbia Records subsidiary and packed off for a shoestring month-and-a-half European tour. My brother Conor is the singer/songwriter/ringmaster for the group, which is how I weasled my way into the tour van, which is roughly the size and shape of a paddy wagon and packed like a clown car—it barely holds nine people, their luggage, amps, drums, music gear, effluvia, etc. We also picked up a German in Hamburg named Jens whose primary contribution has been teaching us macho insults in German, including

warmduscher: taker-of-warm-showers

sitzpinkler: he-who-sits-while-pissing

and my favorite

turnbeutelvergesser: gym-bag-forgetter

And what, exactly, is so un-masculine about forgetting one’s gym bag?

“It’s stupid to forget a gym bag,” he said.

I said I still didn’t understand.

“Ach!” he said. “You are weichei. And I don’t explain that one.”

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My fave, which I learned from a high-school exchange student in 1988 and can't spell properly, is "Schlabefuetze," a gynecological concept which can only be rendered domestically by reference to the English slur "Slapper."

Posted by Eric F | January 7, 2007 10:35 AM

well, turnbeutelvergesser isnt a particularly good example of that brand of insult. and a better translation is "someone who forgets his gym class bag" and thats embarassing because he couldnt just sit on the sidelines but he'd have to take part in jeans or some shorts someone forgot in the gym once thats kept for such an occasion and an undershirt, hence making him look like a total loser. it's a high school thing.

oh and weichei = soft balls. i had never heard of what i assume is "schlabberfotze" but it sounds both very crude and funny.

Posted by Andreas | January 7, 2007 10:45 AM

From and Austrian friend:
Weichei = soft egg -> a "softie"

Posted by StrangerDanger | January 7, 2007 11:37 AM

I looked up weichei on google and here is the translation I found: German-English translations for "Vagina; "Weichei" (vulgär)":

So I guess that could have something to do with the other comments about "soft balls" hmmm... I don't remember learning this kind of stuff in Deutsch class when I was in h.s. ;)

Posted by snickers5x5 | January 7, 2007 12:06 PM

This is awesome Brendan! The Stranger desparately needs a dose of real-time European hipness. Keep the reports coming! Or just watch A Hard Day's Night, live it up, put on a mature and intellectual American face, and ignore the slog.

Posted by denice | January 7, 2007 12:09 PM

My Austrian friend sent a new one:
Schlappschwanz = soft cock

Posted by StrangerDanger | January 7, 2007 1:40 PM

Schlabe foetze = sloppy cunt. Nasty expression. Weichei is a soft boiled egg = wimp

Posted by Jon | January 7, 2007 7:20 PM

keep the stories coming!

ok, here is one from my german friend nina, my co-worker on a broccoili farm in western australia,

Wurstgesicht= "you are a sausage face" uummm....

Posted by minna | January 12, 2007 8:19 PM

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