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Lesson Transcript

Chuck: Chuck here. Absolute Beginner Series, Season 1, Lesson 2 – “To Live and Word in German, You Have to Start Here!” Hello and welcome back to beginner series season three at GermanPod101.com where we study modern German in a fun educational format.
Judith: So, brush up on the German you started learning long ago or start learning today.
Chuck: Thanks for being here with us for this lesson. So [Judith], what are we talking about today?
Judith: In this lesson, you’ll learn how to introduce yourself in German.
Chuck: This conversation takes place in a flight from Washington to Berlin. The conversation is between Joe and [Anke]. The speakers only just met therefore they’ll be speaking formal German. Let’s listen to the conversation.
D: Herr Cardigan, Sie sind sicher Amerikaner, oder?
A: Nein, ich komme aus Kanada.
D: Oh, Entschuldigung.
A: Es ist schon okay. Ich wohne in Washington.
D: Und Sie kommen aus Kanada?
A: Ja. Ich komme aus Calgary. Und Sie, Frau Löwen?
D: Ich bin Deutsche.
A: Kommen Sie aus Berlin?
D: Nein, ich komme nicht aus Berlin. Ich wohne und arbeite in Berlin, aber ich komme aus Leipzig.
D: Mr Cardigan, you probably are an American, aren't you?
A: No, I come from Canada.
D: Oh, excuse me.
A: It's okay. I live in Washington.
D: And you come from Canada?
A: Yes. I come from Calgary. And you, Mrs Löwen?
D: I am German.
A: Do you come from Berlin?
D: No, I don't come from Berlin. I live and work in Berlin, but I come from Leipzig.
Judith: Okay, so how about we give out listener some tips on what they can do when meeting people.
Chuck: Sounds good.
Judith: When meeting somebody new, only the young people hug or exchange kisses on the cheek like French. Most Germans will shake hands while bowing their heads a little. Kind of like a nod.
Chuck: Actually, I don’t think I’ve been the kiss exchange before in Germany.
Judith: That’s because only girls do it.
Chuck: Ah, okay.
Judith: As a man, you’re more like to get a hug.
Chuck: Also note that the order of high ranking person is to get a handshake first. If you offer your hand to somebody ranking higher than you, a few will even snob it. But fortunately, that’s a minority.
Judith: Usually just elder men, or very self-important people. Even though not all Germans are known to observe the rules, please try to observe etiquette when here as it will definitively help your career in Germany.
Chuck: Also, it’s quite important that you don’t forget to bow your hand a little when shaking hands. If you keep looking straight ahead, people will instinct to perceive you as arrogant, but it also say don’t bow as much you would, let’s say, in Japan because that’s just too much.
Judith: No, it doesn’t involve the body at all. Just your head.
Chuck: Yes. Let’s take a look at the vocabulary for this lesson.
Judith: First word, [Herr]
Chuck: “Mister” or “lord”.
Judith: [Herr], Herr Next, [Amerikaner]
Chuck: “American man”.
Judith: [Amerikaner, Amerikaner] Next, [oder]
Chuck: “Or”.
Judith: [oder, oder] Next, [kommen]
Chuck: “To come”.
Judith: [kommen, kommen] Next, [aus]
Chuck: “From”.
Judith: [aus, aus] Next, [wohnen]
Chuck: “To live” or “inhabit”.
Judith: [wohnen, wohnen] Next, [in]
Chuck: “In”.
Judith: [in, in] Next, [Frau]
Chuck: “Miss” or “women”.
Judith: [Frau, Frau] Next, [Deutsche]
Chuck: “German woman”.
Judith: [Deutsche, Deutsche] Next, [nicht]
Chuck: “Not”.
Judith: [nicht, nicht] Next, [arbeiten]
Chuck: “To work”.
Judith: [arbeiten, arbeiten] Next, [aber]
Chuck: “But”.
Judith: [aber, aber]
Chuck: Let’s have a closer look at the usage for some of the words and phrases from this lesson.
Judith: First, you should say that to address someone by the family name, use [Herr]
Chuck: “Mister”.
Judith: Or [Frau]
Chuck: “Miss”.
Judith: Old courses may also teach you the word [Fräulein]
Chuck: “Miss” or literally “little woman”.
Judith: But, this is no longer acceptable, because modern women don’t necessarily want everybody to know their marital status. Only old spinsters insist on being called [Fräulein].
Chuck: Note how [oder]
Judith: “Or”.
Chuck: Is used at the beginning of our dialogue, in order to turn a simple sentence in a “yes or no” question. [Richtig] works like the English question tags “Right?” “Aren’t you?” or “Isn’t it?” in such phrases.
Judith: Note also that in German you’re supposed to say [Ich bin Amerikaner]
Chuck: “I’m an American man.”
Judith: [Ich bin ein Amerikaner]
Chuck: “I’m an American woman.”
Judith: We always use the word for the person, not for the adjective of nationality.

Lesson focus

Chuck: What are we talking about for the grammar point today?
Judith: I think we should have a first look at regular verbs.
Chuck: We’ve just encountered [kommen], “to come”, [wohnen], “to live” or “inhabit” and [arbeiten], “to work”. As you can see, the imperative ends in “en” and this form with the “en” ending is also used when addressing somebody informally with [Sie].
Judith: [Sie kommen, Sie wohnen, Sie arbeiten]
Chuck: “You come, you live, you work.”
Judith: When talking about yourself, the [] form of the verb requires you to drop the final “n”. [Ich komme, ich wohne, ich arbeite]
Chuck: “I come, I live, I work.” To make a “yes or no” question, just put the verb at the beginning of the sentence as before.
Judith: [Wohnen Sie in Kanada]?
Chuck: “Do you come from Canada?”
Judith: [Wohnen Sie in Calgary]
Chuck: “Do you live in Calgary?”
Judith: [Arbeiten Sie in Washington]?
Chuck: “Do you work in Washington?”
Judith: To answer in the negative, use the word [nicht].
Chuck: “Not”. Unlike in English, you don’t have to make any other changes to the sentence in German.
Judith: [Ich komme nicht aus Kanada].
Chuck: “I don’t come from Canada.”
Judith: [Ich wohne nicht in Calgary]
Chuck: “I don’t live in Calgary.”
Judith: [Ich arbeite nicht in Washington]
Chuck: “I don’t work in Washington.” One more prequalify of German, this sentences can just as well mean “I’m not coming from Canada”, “I’m not living in Calgary” or “I’m not working in Washington.” German uses the same tense for what you usually do and what you’re doing right now. Well, that about just does it for today.


Judith: Wanting to test what you’ve just learned?
Chuck: Make this vocabulary lesson stick by using lesson specific flashcards in the learning center.
Judith: There’s a reason everyone uses flashcards.
Chuck: Well, yeah, they work.
Judith: They do help memorization.
Chuck: You can get the flashcards for this lesson at?
Judith: GermanPod101.com
Chuck: All right, see you next week!
Judith: [Bis nächste Woche]


Please to leave a comment.
😄 😞 😳 😁 😒 😎 😠 😆 😅 😜 😉 😭 😇 😴 😮 😈 ❤️️ 👍
Sorry, please keep your comment under 800 characters. Got a complicated question? Try asking your teacher using My Teacher Messenger.

Tuesday at 7:02 pm
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Kommen Sie aus Deutschland?

Thursday at 8:24 am
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Hi Naman,

Thank you for getting back to us.👍

This question is quite common, so it's good you asked.

The meaning is "Are you sure?"

If you have any further questions, please let us know.

Kind regards,


Team GermanPod101.com

Saturday at 5:15 pm
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Sind sie sicher means

1. Are you sure

2. You probably are

Someone please elaborate

Friday at 10:33 pm
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Hello Chucrallah doumit,

It is our pleasure.

Welcome to GermanPod101.

Thank you.

If you have any questions, please let us know.

Kind regards,


Team GermanPod101.com

Chucrallah doumit
Tuesday at 4:42 pm
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Danke fur ihre hilfe sprachen Deutsche

Thursday at 3:22 pm
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Hello Zemichael Kahsay,

Thank you for your feedback.

Welcome to GermanPod101.

Feel free to browse through our lessons. We have

everything, from total beginner to the very advanced.

If you have any questions, please let us know.

Kind regards,


Team GermanPod101.com

Zemichael Kahsay
Friday at 2:26 pm
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Toll, ich find sehr gut. Aber ich brauche B2 und C1 level.

Thursday at 7:41 am
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Hi Oanh Chocolates,

Welcome to GermanPod101.

Have fun studying!😉

Thank you.

If you have any questions, please let us know.

Kind regards,


Team GermanPod101.com

Oanh Chocolates
Saturday at 1:22 am
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Awesome!!.I can start to learn German easily from now on.Thank you so much about great lesson audios!

Ich komme aus Vietnam,anyway😄😄😄

Saturday at 9:00 pm
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Hallo Robert,

Great that you're enjoying the lessons!

You can also check out our special series "Ultimate German Pronunciation Guide":


In case of any questions, please don't hesitate to contact us.



Team GermanPod101.com

Friday at 12:36 am
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It's great to be able to hear the words properly pronounced!