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Lesson Transcript

Chuck: Chuck here. Intermediate Season 4, Lesson 22 – “A Visit to the German Police”. Hello and welcome back to GermanPod101.com, the fastest, easiest and most fun way to learn German. I’m joined in the studio by?
Judith: Hello everyone, [Judith] here.
Chuck: In this lesson you’ll learn how to tell a story.
Judith: This conversation takes place at the police station.
Chuck: The conversation is between Joe and a female police officer.
Judith: The speakers are meeting in official capacity therefore they’ll be speaking formal German.
Chuck: Let’s listen to the conversation.
Polizistin: Guten Tag, kann ich Ihnen helfen?
Joe: Ja, ich hoffe schon. Ich möchte einen Diebstahl melden.
Polizistin: Was wurde gestohlen?
Joe: Mein iPhone.
Polizistin: Und wissen Sie wo und wann?
Joe: Ja, das kann ich sogar sehr genau sagen. Es war gestern auf der Übersetzerkonferenz, während der Eröffnungsrede.
Polizistin: Gut. Ich werde jetzt einen Bericht verfassen. Können Sie bitte beschreiben, wie der Diebstahl ablief? Seien Sie so genau wie möglich.
Joe: Also, ich ging gestern auf die Übersetzerkonferenz. Zunächst meldete ich mich an. Dabei hatte ich das iPhone noch.
Polizistin: Woher wissen Sie, dass Sie das iPhone bei der Anmeldung noch hatten?
Joe: Es gab eine lange Schlange bei der Anmeldung, also vertrieb ich mir die Zeit mit Spielchen auf dem iPhone. Als ich an der Reihe war, steckte ich das iPhone in meine Jackentasche.
Polizistin: Also ist es möglich, dass jemand das iPhone schon gestohlen hat, während Sie sich anmeldeten?
Joe: Ja. Dann nach der Anmeldung sagte man mir, dass ich einen Teil der Eröffnungsrede noch mitkriegen könnte, also lief ich ohne Umwege zum großen Saal, vielleicht 300 Meter.
Polizistin: Trugen Sie dabei Ihre Jacke?
Joe: Ich hatte die Jacke nicht an, aber ich trug sie über den Arm.
Polizistin: Okay, fahren Sie fort. Wann haben Sie den Diebstahl bemerkt?
Joe: Also, ich stand vor den Türen des großen Saals und da hat mich eine Übersetzerin angesprochen. Wir unterhielten uns ein bißchen. Später wollten wir E-Mail-Adressen austauschen. Dazu wollte ich mein iPhone aus der Jackentasche holen, und es war nicht mehr da.
Police: Hello, can I help you?
Joe: Yes, I hope so. I'd like to report a theft.
Police: What was stolen?
Joe: My iPhone.
Police: Do you know where and when?
Joe: Yes, I can even say quite exactly. It was yesterday at the translator conference, during the opening speech.
Police: Good. I'll write a report now. Could you please describe how the theft happened? Be as exact as possible.
Joe: So, I went to the translator conference yesterday. First I registered myself. At that point I still had the iPhone.
Police: How do you know that you still had it at the registration?
Joe: There was a long line up at registration, so I passed the time with games on the iPhone. As I came to the front, I put the iPhone in my jacket pocket.
Police: So it's possible that someone stole the iPhone while you registered?
Joe: Yes. Then after the registration, someone said that I could still catch part of the opening speech, so I walked directly to the large hall, perhaps 300 meters.
Police: Were you wearing your jacket during that time?
Joe: I didn't have the jacket on, but I carried it over my arm.
Police: Okay, continue. When did you notice the theft?
Joe: Well, I stood in front of the doors to the large hall, and a translator spoke to me. We talked with each other a bit. Later we wanted to exchange emails. For that, I wanted to take my iPhone out of the jacket pocket, and it wasn't there any more.
Judith: Okay, as we said. It will be continued in the next lesson. For now, let’s talk about crime in Germany.
Chuck: In Germany most areas are safer than in the United States.
Judith: Yes, even in cities. In cities like Berlin, there’s no area that’s really less safe than, say, Washington.
Chuck: For example, there’s no schools where students have to be checked for weapons.
Judith: There’re some bad parts of town, places with many drug addicts.
Chuck: But hardly any cases of gang violence or mafia.
Judith: And there’s very little gun violence as has hardly anyone owns a gun.
Chuck: There are more hate crimes, but it could just be because of the definitions brought her. A lot more things are persecuted.
Judith: Yes and in part of formal East Germany, xenophobic crime has been a cause of concern.
Chuck: Let’s take a look at the vocabulary for this lesson.
Chuck: The first word we shall see is?
Judith: [verfassen]
Chuck: “To draft” or “compose”.
Judith: [verfassen, verfassen]
Chuck: Next?
Judith: [beschreiben]
Chuck: “To describe”.
Judith: [beschreiben, beschreiben] the forms are [Er beschreibt, Er beschrieb, Er hat beschrieben]
Chuck: Next?
Judith: [ablaufen]
Chuck: “To expire” or “to take place”.
Judith: [ablaufen, ablaufen] the forms are [Es läuft ab, Es lief ab, Es ist abgelaufen]
Chuck: Next?
Judith: [Reihe]
Chuck: “Row” or “line”.
Judith: [Reihe, die Reihe] and the plural is [Reihen]
Chuck: Next?
Judith: [stecken]
Chuck: “To put” or “to stick”.
Judith: [stecken, stecken]
Chuck: Next?
Judith: [Saal]
Chuck: “Hall” or “salon”.
Judith: [Saal, der Saal] and the plural is [Säle]
Chuck: Next?
Judith: [tragen]
Chuck: “To wear” or “to carry”.
Judith: [tragen, tragen] the forms are [Er trägt, Er trug, Er hat getragen]
Chuck: Next?
Judith: [Arm]
Chuck: “Arm”.
Judith: [Arm, der Arm] and the plural is [die Arme]
Chuck: Next?
Judith: [fortfahren]
Chuck: “To continue”.
Judith: [fortfahren, fortfahren] the forms are [Er fährt fort, Er fuhr fort, Er ist fortgefahren]
Chuck: Next?
Judith: [bemerken]
Chuck: “To notice” or “remark”.
Judith: [bemerken, bemerken]
Chuck: Next?
Judith: [ansprechen]
Chuck: “To start talking to” or “to address”.
Judith: [ansprechen, ansprechen] the forms are [Er spricht an, Er sprach an, Er hat angesprochen]
Chuck: Next?
Judith: [sich unterhalten]
Chuck: “To have a conversation” or “to entertain each other”.
Judith: [sich unterhalten, sich unterhalten] the forms are [Er unterhält sich, Er unterhielt sich, Er hat sich unterhalten]
Chuck: “To exchange”.
Judith: [austauschen, austauschen]
Chuck: Next?
Judith: [holen]
Chuck: “To fetch” or “bring”.
Judith: [holen, holen]
Chuck: Let’s have a closer look at the usage for some of the words and phrases from this lesson.
Judith: The first word we’ll look at is [wurde]
Chuck: “Was” – passive.
Judith: Yes. [wurde] as in [wurde gebaut], “was built”. Then, the expression [über den Arm].
Chuck: “Over the arm”, here it means “draped over my arm”.
Judith: Like a jacket. And the expression [an der Reihe] is the same as saying [dran sein] so it means “it’s one’s turn”. [Du bist an der Reihe/dran], “it’s your turn”.

Lesson focus

Chuck: The focus of this lesson is predator past tense.
Judith: We’ve already seen the perfect past tense, but there’s a second kind of past tense in German, it’s called [Präteritum].
Chuck: The predator past tense. This is the source of forms like [war] or [hatte] which you’ve might have encountered briefly in beginner lessons.
Judith: Generally, the forms of the predator past tense are rather easy. Regular verbs behave as if their stamp contained an additional “te”.
Chuck: So, [warten] behaves as if it was a verb called [warteten].
Judith: Yeah. The forms are [Ich wartete, du wartetest, er wartete, wir warteten, ihr wartetet, sie warteten] as you might have noticed, there’s only one difference. Instead of the expected [er wartetet], we get [er wartete], this is because it would sound silly otherwise.
Chuck: Unfortunately just like for the present tense, a lot of verbs take an irregular stamp.
Judith: For example, [Ich war]
Chuck: “I was”.
Judith: [Ich hatte]
Chuck: “I had”.
Judith: [Ich ging]
Chuck: “I went”.
Judith: [Ich gab]
Chuck: “I gave”.
Judith: Also [es gibt/es gab]
Chuck: “There was”.
Judith: [Ich lief]
Chuck: “I ran”.
Judith: [Ich mochte]
Chuck: “I liked”. Fortunately, any derived verbs such as [weggehen] are still based in the same forms as [gehen], so you don’t have to learn two distinct regular verbs.
Judith: And since this tense consists of only one word, the [weg] will still split off, as well as all the prefixes of all other separable verbs.
Chuck: If you look in the PDF, we’ll always list German list than regular verbs with the three important forms. First, the he, she or it form of the person tense which will tell you if there’s a vowel change or a prefix splitting off. In the predator form, which will tell you if there’s any irregularity with this and finally the perfect tense form which will tell you what the participle looks like and if the verb uses [haben] or [sein].
Judith: Now, when to use the predator past tense and when to use the perfect past tense? The rules it that generally, the predator past tense is used in writing. Joe uses it here because the police is writing down his report. Otherwise, using the past tense in spoken German sounds a bit stilted, so in speaking we use the perfect past tense. Sometimes it’s too nice to have a short verb instead of something as [Ich bin gewesen].
Chuck: “I have been”.
Judith: So, for the really, really common short verbs, we use the predator past tense even in speaking and that’s how you’ve encountered [war] and [hatte] before.


Chuck: That just about does it for today. Listeners, do you know the reason why flashcards are so popular?
Judith: It’s because they work.
Chuck: We’ve taken this time test studying tool and modernized it with “My Word Bank” flashcards.
Judith: Learn vocabulary using your eyes and ears.
Chuck: It’s simple and powerful. Save difficult interesting words to your personal vocabulary list called “My Word Bank”.
Judith: Master words in your “My Word Bank” by practicing the flashcards.
Chuck: Words in “My Word Bank” come with audio, so you learn proper pronunciation.
Judith: While you learn to recognize words by site.
Chuck: Go to GermanPod101.com and try “My Word Bank” and flashcards today! So, see you next time!
Judith: [Also bis nächstes Mal!]