Practice makes perfect? Oh, really! Some of us are just not destined to ever be fluent in English honed to perfection at Oxford or Harvard. The only superior level reached is that of ultimate frustration. Even though talent may be absent, the constant effort does deserve – and at times receive – some appreciation. Native English speakers – be they residents of their respective countries or members of an expat diaspora abroad – display admirable countenance when it comes to unravelling the puzzling matter their poor language is often being minced into. A mother-tongue recognised as official world language no. 1 minimises the necessity for its speakers to conquer foreign language terrain. A linguistic metabolism in constant uproar caused by cruel outlandish gibberish is the price to be paid for being saved humiliation in class, when vocabulary and grammar just won’t surface upon demand, or when a vital exam is failed and thus a promising international future brutally ruined forever.
Pig latin or complete nonsense?
This is why we – ze pragmatic Germans (Austrians/Swiss) – decided to make the best of our shortcomings by inventing Denglish. That’s a sort of Esperanto. Over the past decades, a variety of amusing expressions and idioms – adventurous concoctions at times – have been developed into a veritable argot.
Similar to Clingonian, Denglish serves as a serious means of communication! And, just like Clingonian, it is not meant to be understood by anyone outside the trusted circle.
These entertaining examples are printed on greeting cards, for which the copyright exclusively rests with Art in Heaven GmbH. The cards are being published under the motto: Forbetter (verbessern = improve) your English and distributed by Depesche in Geesthacht.
Why not make it a quiz? Explanations are listed below.
I’m standing on you: I fancy you.
Liversausage: to get into a huff / be offended and dwell on it forever
Holla, the Forest-Fairy: to be flabbergasted/dumbstruck by an unexpected occurence
Foxdevilswild: to be driven crazy by something or someone’s action
… and when you’ve mastered all of this, you can heave a sigh of relief and say:
My dear Mr. Singingclub! = Mein lieber Herr Gesangverein = Holy Moly! / Good gracious! /What a challenge!
Header: ©Christina Feyerke