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Lesson Transcript

Chuck: Chuck here upper intermediate season 1 lesson 16. Is your German kaput?
Judith: Hi my name is Judith and I’m joined here by Chuck.
Chuck: Hello everyone and welcome back to germanpod101.com.
Judith: What are we learning today?
Chuck: In this lesson you’ll learn how to use some important conjunctions.
Judith: This conversation takes place at a German office.
Chuck: The conversation is between frank Jones and Mrs. Bayer.
Judith: The speakers are colleagues therefore they’ll be speaking formal German.
Chuck: Let’s listen to the conversation.
Bayer: Hallo Herr Jones… Ich habe Sie in der Mittagspause gar nicht in der Kantine gesehen…
Jones: Ja, das kann sein. Ich war bei der Bank. Ich musste lange am Automaten anstehen, und als ich dann an der Reihe war, war der Automat kaputt!
Bayer: Oh, das ist ja ärgerlich!
Jones: Ja. Und dann musste ich die Überweisung mit so einem Überweisungsträger machen…...Haben Sie das schon einmal gemacht?
Bayer: Ja, aber erst ein paar Mal. Ich mache normalerweise immer alles per Online-Banking.
Jones: Hmm. Ja, als ich noch in den USA gelebt habe, habe ich auch viel Online-Banking gemacht…Vielleicht sollte ich das hier auch machen.
Bayer: Na, wenn Sie das nächste Mal zur Bank gehen, können Sie doch Online-Banking beantragen.
Jones: Ja, das werde ich tun. Ich muss eh morgen noch einmal dorthin.
Bayer: Haha, gehen Sie jeden Tag zur Bank?
Jones: Haha, nein. Mir ist aber erst als ich wieder hier war, eingefallen, dass ich ja auch noch einen Kontoauszug für diesen Monat holen muss.
Bayer: Ach so.
Jones: Und ich habe auch noch vergessen, meine zweite Überweisung zu machen…
Bayer: Haha, der kaputte Automat hat Sie aber ganz schön durcheinander gebracht!
Bayer: Hello Mr. Jones...I didn't see you at all in the lunchroom during lunch...
Jones: Yes, that's quite possible. I was at the bank. I had to wait in line for the bank machine, and then just as it was my turn, the machine broke!
Bayer: Oh, that's so annoying!
Jones: Yeah, and then I had to do a bank transfer with one of those bank transfer forms...Have you ever done that?
Bayer: Yes, but only a few times. I normally do everything through online banking.
Jones: Hmm. Yes, when I was still living in the USA, I also did a lot of online banking. Maybe I should do that here too.
Bayer: Well, next time you go to the bank, you can sign up for online banking.
Jones: Yeah, I'll do that. I have to go back there again tomorrow anyway.
Bayer: Haha, do you go to the bank every day?
Jones: Haha, no. It just occurred to me once I got back here, that I still need to make a withdrawal for this month.
Bayer: Ahh, okay.
Jones: And I still forgot to do my second bank transfer...
Bayer: Haha, the broken bank machine really got you mixed up!
Judith: Okay so this is what Mr. Jones did during his work break. Let’s talk in general about the term work breaks a bit.
Chuck: Sounds good.
Judith: If you are working for at least six hours, you are entitled to a thirty minute work break for lunch or you can also use it to go to the bank.
Chuck: If you are working at least nine hours your work break needs to be at least 45 minutes
Judith: You may also decide to break them up your work break into several segments but then each needs to be at least fifteen minutes.
Chuck: Breaks of less than fifteen minutes do not count toward breaks so you have unlimited number of cigarette and bathroom breaks. Let’s take a look at the vocabulary for this lesson. The first word is:
Judith: [anstehen]
Chuck: To stand in line or be supposed to take place.
Judith: [anstehen]
Chuck: Next.
F: [Reihe]
Chuck: Row or line.
Judith: [Reihe, die] and the plural is [Reihen]
Chuck: Next.
Judith: [so ein]
Chuck: Such a.
Judith: [so ein]
Chuck: Next.
Judith: [normalerweise]
Chuck: Normally.
Judith: [normalerweise]
Chuck: Next
Judith: [beantragen]
Chuck: To apply for, petition or request.
Judith: [beantragen]
Chuck: Next
Judith: [eh]
Chuck: Anywhere.
Judith: [eh]
Chuck: Next
Judith: [einfallen]
Chuck: To tumble down, sunken or foray.
Judith: [einfallen] so with a vowel, vowel change [Er fällt ein, Er fiel ein, Er ist eingefallen]
Chuck: Next.
Judith: [etwas fällt jemandem ein]
Chuck: Somebody remembers something or somebody has an idea.
Judith: [etwas fällt jemandem ein] and again the forms are with a vowel change and with [ein] split off.
Chuck: Next.
Judith: [Auszug]
Chuck: Excerpt or excerpt statement
Judith: [Auszug, der] and the plural is [Auszüge]
Chuck: Next.
Judith: [durcheinander].
Chuck: Messy or disordered.
Judith: [durcheinander]
Chuck: Next.
Judith: [durcheinander bringen]
Chuck: To make a mess or confuse.
Judith: [durcheinander bringen]
Chuck: Let’s have a closer look for the usage of some of the words and phrases for this lesson.
Judith: The first phrase is [An der Reihe sein]
Chuck: It’s one’s turn.
Judith: For example you could say [Du bist an der Reihe] and it’s the same as saying [Du bist dran] no difference.
Chuck: It’s your turn.
Judith: Also we should talk about [Mir fällt ein]
Chuck: Something fell into me.
Judith: This means I remember or I have an idea. You always use this with [es, eine Idee/ein Gedanke fällt mir ein] I currently think this or I currently have this idea, or you can say [Es fällt mir gerade nichts ein].

Lesson focus

Chuck: I currently have no idea.The focus of this lesson is of the usage of the words [noch, erst] and [als, wenn].
Judith: Yes two important distinctions to make. First for temporal sub-clauses, that is sub-clauses that describe a time, there’s a distinction that you have to master in German, the distinction of [wenn] and [als]. Both of these could be translated as [when] in English, however in German these words are not interchangeable.
Chuck: So when do you use one and when the other?
Judith: The rule is actually quite simple. It will probably take some time until you completely master it but it’s just a matter of understanding it then understanding is easy. The rule is that when you are talking about something that has already happened, then you have to use [als] and when you are talking about something that hasn’t happened yet, then you have to use [wenn].
Chuck: Note that [wenn] also means if not just when. So maybe she doesn’t see the German skepticism.
Judith: Yes, even when you are talking about the sun rising tomorrow, you have to say [wenn die Sonne morgen aufgeht].
Chuck: If and when the sun rises tomorrow.
Judith: Yes. This is always, always the case. You can’t use anything other than [wenn].
Chuck: Let’s also look at another important distinction in this context. The distinction between [erst] and [noch] combined with another temporal word like for example [gestern]. Both can be translated as only or only yesterday.
Judith: However, [erst] is only used when the focus is on a new time period starting. For example, if you just started being able to do something, if you just met someone or if something finally happened.
Chuck: If [erst] is about a new time period starting, then [noch] places the emphasis on an old time period ending. For example, [noch] is used for things you used to be able to do and can’t do now or something stopped happening.
Judith: In English, [noch] can be translated as only or still and [erst] can be translated as only or just.
Chuck: Can you give us some examples?
Judith: Yes I have two sentences that can be translated the same in English with a different meaning. For example [Ich habe ihn gestern erst gesehen].
Chuck: I saw him only yesterday as in finally.
Judith: [Ich habe ihn gestern noch gesehen].
Chuck: I saw him only yesterday. Yesterday he was still okay.
Judith: Yes in the first sentence [ich habe ihn gestern erst gesehen] the time period is starting, I finally saw him now and now I might see him more often and [Ich habe ihn gestern noch gesehen] I saw him only yesterday as in since then I haven’t seen him but nothing much could have happened then right?
Chuck: Want some more examples?
Judith: Yes.
Chuck: This time about the book. I’m going to make it hard on you.
Judith: Not difficult. [Er hat das Buch erst heute zurück gebracht].
Chuck: He brought back the book only today. So like after taking it out for quite a long time.
Judith: [Er hat das Buch noch heute weg gebracht].
Chuck: He brought back the book today still. So earlier than expected, maybe he borrowed it this morning.
Judith: Yes. [Erst heute] finally today and [noch heute] already today. Take your time to look these over in the lesson notes as well. Then the best way to internalize his grammar feature is if you pay particular attention any time you see one of these words and quiz yourself on their use. Like why is it used here, why it isn’t used there. This way you’ll understand.


Chuck: Well that just about does it for today.
Judith: Ready to test what you just learned?
Chuck: Make this lesson’s vocabulary stick by using lesson specific flashcards.
Judith: There is a reason everyone uses flashcards.
Chuck: They work.
Judith: They really do help memorization.
Chuck: You can get flashcards for this lesson at,
Judith: germanpod101.com
Chuck: Okay, see you next week.
Judith: [Bis nächste Woche].