separable verbs

one thing you should never ask in deutschkurs is “warum?” because you’ll either get no answer, or one that is so complicated you end up more confused than before you started. yes, after a gentle warm-up with “wie spät ist es?” in yesterday’s class, Lehrerin Anna threw us brutally into the deep waters of Separable Verbs. just when we were feeling all warm & fuzzy & proud of ourselves because we’d got the hang of “halb acht” meaning half past seven, & the difference between offiziel und informell time formats. just when we thought we were smart because we could mostly remember the verb endings & which ones are irregular. just when our frustration with the randomness of der, die, das was abating & we had all submitted to the need to learn the article with the noun … we are introduced to the Separable Verb.

i don’t understand why a word should break up & move in independent pieces around a sentence. i can only assume it’s the counterpoint to the german passion for creating new words by stringing as many other words together as possible (take verlängerungskabletrommelhalterschrankschlusselschrankschlusselverwahrer & so on zum beispiel). emily asked “warum?” but anna’s response (delivered at lightning speed probably because it was over the heads of pretty much all of us) didn’t shed any light until she began to physically demonstrate the difference between “stehen” & “aufstehen”. then i had a small epiphany & understood the difference between “kaufen” & “einkaufen”. perhaps there’s hope for me yet. i am trying

Transmediale Stream

meantime life carries on around the edges of the deutschkurs. i was very tempted to skip a few classes & dash up to berlin for transmediale, but happily there is very good live streaming from the presentations & today i’ve been listening to a talk about “radio magic” & then a lecture & performance by brasilian Vanessa Ramos-Velasquez & at the same time having a bit of a chat in the faces web site live chat tool. i can see people i know in the audience of the stream so the combination of this with the live chat is a pretty good second-best on being there. & i can get on with other work at the same time.