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Lesson Transcript

Chuck: Chuck here. Intermediate Season 4, Lesson 14 – “Take Some German Advice from a Pro”.
Judith: Hi, my name is [Judith] and I’m joined here by Chuck.
Chuck: Hello and welcome back to GermanPod101.com
Judith: What are we learning today?
Chuck: In this lesson, you’ll learn how to talk about work and advice someone on his career.
Judith: This conversation takes place at a German conference for translators.
Chuck: The conversation is between Joe and Christina.
Judith: The speakers only met today therefore they’ll be speaking formal German.
Chuck: Let’s listen to the conversation.
Joe: Kommen Sie aus Berlin?
Christina: Ja, ich bin von hier.
Joe: Sind Sie Freiberuflerin oder Angestellte?
Christina: Ich bin Angestellte. Ich habe letztes Jahr erst meinen Abschluss in Übersetzung gemacht. Jetzt arbeite ich seit ein paar Monaten bei Running Translations, in Friedrichshain.
Joe: Nicht in Berlin?
Christina: (lacht) Doch, Friedrichshain ist ein Stadtteil von Berlin. Was ist mit Ihnen? Bei welcher Firma arbeiten Sie?
Joe: Ich bin Freiberufler. Ich habe drei Jahre lang bei einer Übersetzungsagentur in Washington gearbeitet, aber vor anderthalb Jahren habe ich mich selbstständig gemacht.
Christina: Also sind Sie schon ein erfahrener Übersetzer. Ich fange ja gerade erst an. Vielleicht können Sie mir helfen...
Joe: Ja, sicher.
Christina: Ich überlege mir gerade, ob es vielleicht falsch war, die Stelle bei einer Übersetzungsagentur anzunehmen, weil sie nicht gut bezahlen und so viele Übersetzer ja Freiberufler sind. Was denken Sie?
Joe: Ich denke, dass es für einen Anfänger eine gute Idee ist, zunächst bei einer Agentur zu arbeiten. Wenn Sie dort ein paar Jahre lang gearbeitet haben, wissen Sie, wie es läuft.
Christina: Sie meinen, um Erfahrung zu sammeln?
Joe: Ja. Dann haben Sie auch mehr Erfolg als Freiberufler. Oder Sie bleiben angestellt, um ein sicheres Einkommen zu haben. Das vermisse ich manchmal.
Christina: Danke, das hilft mir weiter.
Joe: Are you from Berlin?
Christina: Yes, I'm from here.
Joe: Are you a freelancer or employed?
Christina: I'm employed. I just got my degree in translation last year. Now I've been working for a few months at Running Translations, in Friedrichshain.
Joe: Not in Berlin?
Christina: (laughing) Actually yes, Friedrichshain is a part of Berlin. What about you? Which company do you work for?
Joe: I'm a freelancer. I worked for a translation agency in Washington for three years, but I became self-employed one and a half years ago.
Christina: So you're already an experienced translator. I'm just starting out. Maybe you could help me...
Joe: Yes, certainly.
Christina: I'm wondering whether it was perhaps wrong to accept a position with a translation agency, because they don't pay well and so many translators are self-employed. What do you think?
Joe: I think that it's a good idea for a beginner to work for an agency at first. Once you've worked there for a couple years, then you'll know how it works.
Christina: To get experience, you mean?
Joe: Yes. Then you'll have more success as a freelancer. Or you'll stay employed in order to have a secure income. I miss that sometimes.
Christina: Thanks, that helps.
Chuck: How about we talk about the way time works in a typical German life?
Judith: You mean what they do, when and how long it lasts?
Chuck: Yeah, exactly.
Judith: Well, you start off with four years of primary school at the age of six or seven you can go to primary school.
Chuck: You don’t have pre-school?
Judith: Kindergarten. Of course we have kindergarten, but it’s not mandatory.
Chuck: Oh, what’s that like? It’s like a year and half days like in the States?
Judith: No, I mean the last year is the most important, but in total there are three years of kindergarten.
Chuck: Wow, I guess that’s why they start primary school at six.
Judith: Okay, I didn’t know it was different. Anyway, so after primary school you have at least six or sometimes nine years of secondary school, depends on the school type and of course there are possibly more years if you have to repeat a year.
Chuck: Then, two or three years at trade-school or at least four and a half years of university. Usually more, because you make your own timetable for most degrees.
Judith: Yes and until recently, men also had to do nine months of compulsory military service or if they rejected that for reasons of conscience, then they had to do equivalent community service, in positions that otherwise are hard to fill.
Chuck: All that means that if you’re a university graduate, you’ll only enter the work force at the age of 24 in the very best of cases. There’re also a lot of university graduates only starting to work at the age of 30 or similar. Even now, as I am 31, I still get people asking me “Oh, so you’re here in Germany as a student?” Let’s take a look at the vocabulary for this lesson.
Chuck: The first word we shall see is?
Judith: [Abschluss]
Chuck: “Completion, closure” or “degree”.
Judith: [Abschluss, der Abschluss] and the plural is [Abschlüsse]
Chuck: Next?
Judith: [Monat]
Chuck: “Month”.
Judith: [Monat, der Monat] and the plural is [Monate]
Chuck: Next?
Judith: [Agentur]
Chuck: “Agency”.
Judith: [Agentur, die Agentur] and the plural is [Agenturen]
Chuck: Next?
Judith: [anderthalb]
Chuck: “One and a half”.
Judith: [anderthalb, anderthalb]
Chuck: Next?
Judith: [selbständig]
Chuck: “Independent, self-reliant” or “self-employed”.
Judith: [selbständig, selbständig]
Chuck: Next?
Judith: [erfahren]
Chuck: “To experience, learn or something” or “experienced”.
Judith: [erfahren, erfahren] and as a verb, this is conjugated as [Er erfährt].
Chuck: Next?
Judith: [sich überlegen]
Chuck: “To ponder”.
Judith: [sich überlegen, sich überlegen]
Chuck: Next?
Judith: [falsch]
Chuck: “Wrong”.
Judith: [falsch, falsch]
Chuck: Next?
Judith: [annehmen]
Chuck: “To accept”.
Judith: [annehmen, annehmen] and this is a splitting vowel-changing verb, so [Er nimmt an] and the participle is [angenommen].
Chuck: Next?
Judith: [zunächst]
Chuck: “Initially” or “at first”.
Judith: [zunächst, zunächst]
Chuck: Next?
Judith: [sammeln]
Chuck: “To collect”.
Judith: [sammeln, sammeln]
Chuck: Next?
Judith: [Erfolg]
Chuck: “Success”.
Judith: [Erfolg, der Erfolg] and the plural is [Erfolge].
Chuck: Next?
Judith: [Einkommen]
Chuck: “Income”.
Judith: [Einkommen, das Einkommen]
Chuck: Next?
Judith: [vermissen]
Chuck: “To miss a person”.
Judith: [vermissen, vermissen]
Chuck: Let’s have a closer look at the usage for some of the words and phrases from this lesson.
Judith: First phrase we’ll look at is [Ich bin von hier].
Chuck: “I’m from here.”
Judith: It’s a common way saying you’re a native of the city or if you’ve lived long enough for you to know about it. If you’re a tourist needing information, you could ask the person [Sind Sie von hier?].
Chuck: “Are you from here?”
Judith: This is the save for them to be able to help you. Next, the word [Stadtteil].
Chuck: “Burial”.
Judith: It’s a combination of [Stadt]
Chuck: “City”.
Judith: And [Teil]
Chuck: “Part”.
Judith: A part of the city is a “burial”. Next, the phrase [Was ist mit Ihnen?], it’s a more elaborated of asking [Und Sie?], so it means “What about you?” [Was ist mit Ihnen?]. Finally, the word [Anfänger].
Chuck: “Beginner”.
Judith: Is a person who does [anfangen].
Chuck: “To begin”.
Judith: “Er” does this to words, well “ung” word are more general nouns, for example [Erfahrung].
Chuck: “Experience”.
Judith: Based on [erfahren].
Chuck: “To experience”.
Judith: And [Übersetzung].
Chuck: “Translation”.
Judith: Based on [übersetzen].
Chuck: “To translate”.

Lesson focus

Chuck: The focus of this lesson is [seit] and [lang].
Judith: Let’s talk about a set of said expressions that is difficult to master for English speakers. The questions is how to translate “for so many years”?
Chuck: In German, there are two possible translations and they cannot be used interchangeably.
Judith: One is [seit Jahren] this means that you started in the past and you’re still doing it. [Seit] literally translates to “since”, so that’s the reason a lot of Germans would say “since three years” instead of “for three years” [seit drei Jahren]. The other possibility is [so many Jahre lang].
Chuck: That means you did something for three years, but then stopped or at least interrupted what you were doing. For example you can say you went to university [drei Jahre lang].
Judith: But, if you’re still at university you have to say [seit drei Jahren].
Chuck: In English there’s differences usually expressed by a tense. The ongoing three years are combined with the present perfect tense and the stopped three years are combined with the past tense.
Judith: In Germany you also use the past for the latter, but you use the regular present tense rather than the perfect for the ongoing three years.
Chuck: “I have lived here, for three years.”
Judith: [Ich wohne seit drei Jahren hier].
Chuck: “I lived in Germany for three years.”
Judith: [Ich habe drei Jahre lang in Deutschland gewohnt].
Chuck: “I lived in Germany three years ago.”
Judith: [Ich habe vor drei Jahren in Deutschland gewohnt].


Chuck: That just about does it for today!
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Chuck: So, see you next week! And don’t forget to comment if you liked this lesson.
Judith: [Also bis nächste Woche! Und vergesst nicht einen Kommentar zu schreiben, falls euch diese Lektion gefallen hat!]