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Lesson Transcript

Chuck: Chuck here. Upper intermediate season 1, Lesson 12. Office Gossip in German.
Judith: Hi my name is Judith and I am joined here by Chuck.
Chuck: Hello everyone and welcome back to germanpod101.com.
Judith: What are we learning today?
Chuck: In this lesson, you will learn how to gossip.
Judith: This conversation takes place at the German office.
Chuck: The conversation is between Frank Jones and Mrs. [Bayer].
Judith: The speakers are colleagues. Therefore they will be speaking formal German.
Chuck: Let’s listen to the conversation.
Bayer: Herr Jones!
Jones: Ja, was gibt es?
Bayer: Haben Sie schon das Neuste gehört?
Jones: Hmm, nein. Worum geht es denn?
Bayer: Nächste Woche machen wir doch einen Betriebsausflug…
Jones: Oh wirklich? Das wusste ich gar nicht….
Bayer: Oh, hat Ihnen das niemand gesagt? Einmal im Jahr lädt uns Herr Müller zu einem Ausflug ein…Letztes Jahr waren wir im Musical und das Jahr davor sind wir ins Kino gegangen….
Jones: Oh toll.
Bayer: Ja…und ich habe gerade mit Frau Schilling gesprochen und sie hat gesagt, sie wisse, wo wir dieses Jahr hingehen, aber sie dürfe noch nichts verraten, denn Herr Müller wolle uns überraschen!
Jones: Oh, das ist aber gemein!
Bayer: Ja! Das habe ich auch gesagt! Daraufhin meinte sie, sie gebe mir einen Tipp.
Jones: Oh, ein Rätsel also?
Bayer: Haha, ja genau…
Jones: Okay… und was ist der Tipp?
Bayer: Frau Schilling meinte, es seien nicht die Schlümpfe, die wir angucken…
Jones: Hä? Nicht die Schlümpfe?
Bayer: Ja. Das war alles.
Jones: Hmm. Und wissen Sie, was Frau Schilling damit meint?
Bayer: Also, ehrlich gesagt, nicht so wirklich….Ich hatte gehofft, Sie hätten eine Idee…
Jones: Hmm, nein. Irgendwie fällt mir dazu nichts ein….Nicht die Schlümpfe….Was soll das denn sein?
Bayer: Mr. Jones!
Jones: Yes, what is it?
Bayer: Have you heard the news?
Jones: Hmm, no. What's it about?
Bayer: Next week we're having a staff outing...
Jones: Oh really? I wasn't aware of that...
Bayer: Oh, didn't anyone mention it? Once a year, Mr. Müller invites us on an excursion. Last year, we went to see a musical, and the year before we went to a movie.
Jones: Oh, that's great!
Bayer: Yes...and I just spoke with Mrs. Schilling, and she said that she knows where we're going this year, but she's not allowed to give it away because Mr. Müller wants to surprise us!
Jones: Oh, but that's so mean!
Bayer: Yeah! That's what I said! So then she said she'd give me a hint.
Jones: Oh, so it's a riddle?
Bayer: Haha, yes, exactly.
Jones: Okay...and what's the hint?
Bayer: Mrs. Schilling said that it's not the Smurfs that we'll be watching...
Jones: Huh? Not the Smurfs?
Bayer: Yes, that's all she said.
Jones: Hmm. And do we know what she meant by that?
Bayer: Honestly, not really...I had hoped that you would have an idea.
Jones: Hmm, no. Somehow nothing is coming to me....Not the Smurfs...What the heck could it be?
Judith: Okay speaking of the Smurfs, let’s talk a bit about what’s on German TV.
Chuck: All right. Well, German TV programs are not considerably better than the American ones. Very often, it’s just the same series just dubbed into German. Like you can watch the Simpsons in German, it’s kind of funny.
Judith: Yeah all those moves.
Chuck: Yeah and you also hear the same kind of talk shows and game shows but with German moderators.
Judith: Yeah. There are two major differences though. One is that if you want to watch a good movie, you pretty much have to tune in at 8:15 PM of course. That’s the traditional starting time for good movies. They don’t start layered like in the states.
Chuck: You might wonder why. Well it’s because the news always starts at 8 o'clock and it lasts for 15 minutes. So at 8:15, everyone is watching their TV and they are ready to be entertained.
Judith: Yeah there are also movies later at night of course typically the more violent ones and of course kids movies start out earlier.
Chuck: What Judith, you said there were two major differences. So what’s the other one?
Judith: The other major difference is that there are several German public TV stations, the ARD, JDF and also stations with regional programming like the WDR and these rely on taxes for their funding. So they are never called for donations.
Chuck: You mean TV licenses, don’t you?
Judith: Yeah but well you cannot get around paying a TV license really. They have so many rules about that that you basically fall into that.
Chuck: Umm.
Judith: Yeah and they also get money from the government straight through taxes in addition to the TV license and stuff. Anyway, so public TV stations will criticize the commercial TV station’s lack of standards and they were claimed to provide higher quality entertainment.
Chuck: So I guess that’s where the public TV stations air operas, theater plays, orchestra concerts and more serious political debates and some programs were made even for schools.
Judith: Yeah that’s definitely higher quality and that caters to the intellectuals and so on but it’s not all there. You can also find some German movies, German shows.
Chuck: Wait I remember, I watch – I think I watched the world cup on there.
Judith: Yeah, yeah exactly that’s also and they had some live popular soccer games on the public channels that really reconciles a lot of Germans to the existence of these channels that they otherwise wouldn’t watch.
Chuck: And I think during the half time, we even saw an Ad to pay your TV license. It’s fun. Let’s take a look at the vocabulary for this lesson. The first word is
Judith: [worum].
Chuck: About what.
Judith: [worum].
Chuck: Next.
Judith: [Betrieb].
Chuck: Enterprise.
Judith: [Betrieb, der]. And the plural is [Betriebe].
Chuck: Next.
Judith: [Ausflug].
Chuck: Trip or excursion.
Judith: [Ausflug, der]. And the plural is [Ausflüge].
Chuck: Next.
Judith: [Musical].
Chuck: Musical.
Judith: [Musical, das]. And the plural is [Musicals].
Chuck: Next.
Judith: [betrügen].
Chuck: To betray.
Judith: [betrügen]. The forms are [Er betrügt, Er betrog, Er hat betrogen].
Chuck: Next.
Judith: [gemein].
Chuck: Mean.
Judith: [gemein].
Chuck: Next.
Judith: [daraufhin].
Chuck: There upon or here upon.
Judith: [daraufhin].
Chuck: Next.
Judith: [Rätsel].
Chuck: Enigma, riddle or a puzzle.
Judith: [Rätsel, das] And the plural is the same.
Chuck: Next.
Judith: [Schlumpf].
Chuck: Smurf.
Judith: [Schlumpf, der]. And the plural is [Schlümpfe].
Chuck: Next.
Judith: [ehrlich].
Chuck: Honest or truthful.
Judith: [ehrlich].
Chuck: Let’s have a closer look at the usage for some of the words and phrases from this lesson.
Judith: The first phrase is [Worum geht es].
Chuck: What’s it about.
Judith: [Worum geht es]. Then we have [ehrlich gesagt].
Chuck: To be honest.
Judith: This is a useful expression [ehrlich gesagt] and finally [Was soll das denn sein].
Chuck: What’s that supposed to be.
Judith: [Was soll das denn sein]. And the focus on the [das].

Lesson focus

Chuck: The focus of this lesson is [Konjunktiv I].
Judith: Yeah. In the first lesson of the series, we introduced the German conjunctive. At that time, we said there were two types of conjunctives in German labeled 1 and 2.
Chuck: We learned the second type first because it’s the most common one today however the first type of conjunctive is still used in writing and by people who want to speak very correctly.
Judith: In today’s dialogue, we assume that Mrs. [Bayer] is one of those people. So she is using the conjunctive 1 when reporting what people said.
Chuck: While the conjunctive 2 is based on the past tense, the conjunctive 1 is formed based on the infinitive. I’d simply take off the en and add the conjunctive endings which you’ve already seen for conjunctive 2.
Judith: All right. How about I give you an example. Let’s say, the conjunctive 1 forms of [wissen].
Chuck: Sounds good.
Judith: I’d like you to pay particular attention to the extra e’s in the second person forms though. These are not normal. They might sound normal, but they are not normally there. So instead of [ich weiß] we are getting [ich wisse] and conjunctive 2 [ich wüsste] or you would see that [ich wisse] is based on the infinitive and [ich wüsste] is based on [ich wusste] which is the past tense [ich wisse, du wissest, er wisse, wir wissen]. This is the exact same as the present tense. That’s why we had chose the conjunctive 2, the [wir wüssten]. Then [ihr wisset]. Here you have to be careful because [ihr wisset] is the conjunctive 1 and [ihr wisst] is the present tense. So [ihr wisset] with an extra e and [sie wissen] which is the same as present tense again.
Chuck: The main problem with the conjunctive 1 is that very often, it results in forms that are identical to the present tense. It’s the case for basically all verbs that don’t change their vowel or otherwise irregular.
Judith: Yeah even more forms than for this [wissen] verb. If you have a regular verb like [arbeiten] then there was hardly any difference. However it is necessary to be able to indicate that you are quoting someone. So that’s why people have switched over from conjunctive 1 to conjunctive 2 and then to those [würde] forms. Any way, we will talk more the usage of the conjunctive in the next lesson.


Chuck: That just about does it for today. Stop by germanpod101.com and pick up the lesson notes.
Judith: It has the conversation transcript.
Chuck: And vocabulary, sample sentences, the grammar explanation.
Judith: And the cultural insights section.
Chuck: Seeing the German.
Judith: Really helps you remember faster.
Chuck: But don’t take our word for it. Have a look for yourself.
Judith: And let us know what you think.
Chuck: Next week, we will have the continuation of the conjunctive saga. So don’t forget to tune in next time.
Judith: [Bis dann].