Saturday, October 27, 2012

On learning to swear in German

So I am trying to get back into learning German. One issue with taking lessons is that they never seem to teach you words you actually know.  For example I have been taught how to ask directions to the main railway station, but I have not been taught how to tell someone to fuck off. I spend more of my life swearing at people than I do looking for railway stations.

So after doing some book research I find that the phrase is: Verpiss dich. I am very disappointed by this German phrase. I am more likely to start laughing if someone tells me " Verpiss dich."

Good English swear words carry a threat of violence and a suggestion that the person who is sworn at has sexual problems.

I now understand why they don't translate the swearing on the TV from English to German. It just wouldn't work. On a German grammar level I don't understand the use of dich -- that seems polite.