What Germans Do In Their Free Time?

Free time

One popular thing these days is stockpiling food.

Arming themselves is another favorite pastime at the moment, too.

Losing confidence in the future is also big. But that’s always among the the top ten German free time activities anyway so, well, let’s move on (yeah, to the future).

Once they’re done with those they also enjoy window surfing (put that towel down first!), having fights about opening and closing windows and shaking their heads in disgust.

In surveys over the past 25 years, watching TV has been the unchallenged most popular pastime of the Germans. Through the introduction of TV sets in households in 1984, television consumption has continuously increased. This year, 97 percent of those polled by the “Hamburger Stiftung für Zukunftsfragen” said they watch the tube at least once a week – and that it is their favorite leisure activity.

“There Is No Plan B”

When it comes to Angela Merkel’s refugee policy.

Merkel

I can understand that and I value her candor. I would just really appreciate it if somebody could tell me what her Plan A is.

Speaking on German public television on Sunday, Chancellor Angela Merkel said the policy of open borders for migrants would remain. Merkel dismissed a “rigid limit,” saying, “There is no point in believing that I can solve the problem through the unilateral closure of borders…”

Merkel’s party faces elections on March 13 when voters elect new regional parliaments in three of Germany’s 16 states. It is the first poll since the migrant crisis began.

Meine verdammte Pflicht und Schuldigkeit besteht darin, dass dieses Europa einen gemeinsamen Weg findet.”

Family Brown

Satire alarm! Please remain calm.

This neo-Nazi dude had a one-night-stand with this Eritrean chick seven years previously who is now being abgeschoben (deported) because of Ausländer raus (foreigners out) and all that so now he has to take care of his daughter who was the result of their short liaison.

Der guckt nicht traurig, der guckt nachdenklich. Er hat sehr viel nachgedacht früher.

PS: Today’s your last chance to get your FREE COPY of the highly acclaimed Smashwords ebook The Little Red Book: Of Little-Read Jokes about the Enlightened Left, which I can also highly recommend as I did the highly acclaiming part, too.

I’ll Be Home For Christmas

Not.

Within the next 45 years, the nation’s population will decline by at least 10 percent — whereas most countries, including the United States, expect the opposite to happen. Some consider that dynamic to be the driving force behind Chancellor Angela Merkel’s decision to take in nearly 1 million refugees this year alone.

Günther Has Left The Building

You know, just like Elvis used to? Only in this case Günther has left the Gasometer. Or will have left it, a bit later tonight.

Gasometer

Don’t ask. This is the spaceship thingy inside Schöneberg’s Gasometer (taken out of service in 1995 – the Gasometer, not the spaceship) where Gunther Jauch has been holding his popular Sunday evening political talk show on German Channel One (Das Erste) since 2011. And he’s done a pretty good job at it, I think, Gasometer spaceship or not.

Another era has come to an end or something. He will be replaced by Anne Will whom he replaced in 2011. Don’t ask. It’s a German öffentlich-rechtlich TV (“public sector” or state TV, if you prefer) kind of thang.

So, Anne Will (her last name could be translated as “wants to,” if you wanted to): May the talk be with you.

Am Ende war es ein eher kurzes Gastspiel für Günther Jauch in der ARD: An diesem Sonntag lädt der Moderator zum letzten Mal als Polittalker ins Berliner Gasometer. Für Jauch könnte es der Einstieg in den Vorruhestand sein.

A Fireside Chat With Angela

Things have caught fire here and there these days, you see.

Fireside

We have nothing to fear but the refugees themselves. Just kidding, Leute (people). Sort of.

Repeating the mantra “Wir schaffen das,” (“We will manage,”) German Chancellor Angela Merkel is defending her strategy on handling the refugee crisis against growing criticism.

“Let’s just assume we all would declare that we will not manage it — then what?” she asked host Anne Will in a primetime, one-on-one TV interview on Wednesday night.

Unlike critics, “I actually have to work out this problem,” says the German chancellor.

Ich habe einen Plan.

PS: The word crisis originates from the Greek word krisis, which means “decisive moment.” Krisis like circle? As in turnaround? I haven’t seen one here yet.

Practice Your German Tonight

And your Cold War attitudes from the 80s, while you’re at it. Looks like we might be needing them again.

Deutschland 83

“Deutschland 83” premieres 11 p.m. Wednesday on SundanceTV.

SundanceTV’s “Deutschland 83” is the first German-language series ever broadcast on a U.S. network. The eight-part fictional spy thriller is set in 1983, when the then-split Germany was the hot spot for escalating nuclear tensions between NATO and the Soviet Union.

Vladimir Putin: “More than 40 new intercontinental ballistic missiles able to overcome even the most technically advanced anti-missile defense systems will be added to the make-up of the nuclear arsenal this year.”

German Of The Day: Zwangsbeitrag

That means “compulsory contribution” and refers here to the TV fees every German household has to pay for Öffentlich-Rechtliche or public-sector (or state) TV. You have to pay this here, you see, whether you watch these channels or not. You have to pay this here whether you even own a TV or not. Germany has the most expensive public-sector TV channels in the world, by the way.

ARD

Sounds reasonable, right? Hardy, har har. Well, now German “scientists” have suddenly figured out that Germany no longer needs these expensive public-sector channels and that they can be, pardon my French, “privatized.” German scientists are notoriously thorough, you know, and that’s why it takes them a little longer than other folks to figure this kind of stuff out.

Other Germans will not want to hear this, however. This is because, well… It’s hard to say why this is. It would mean getting rid of Tatort, for one thing. This would be earth-shattering or something. And in the end, Germans also want to have an official opinion maker, I suppose, someone they can always go to when they need an official opinion of their own, so-to-speak – and Der Spiegel isn’t handy at that moment.

The more things change the more they stay the same. So don’t even THINK about changing channels. “That’s right, folks. Don’t touch that dial!

Wissenschaftler stellen bei der Betrachtung von ARD und ZDF fest: Deutschland braucht nicht länger den teuersten öffentlich-rechtlichen Rundfunk der Welt.

Eclipse Faked By Jan Böhmermann

That was the sunniest damned eclipse I ever saw, people. What a dud. I think it was faked by Jan Böhmermann.

Finger

The row (about the Varoufakis flip off video) took a fresh twist on Wednesday evening when satirical programme Neo Magazin Royale, on a rival channel, claimed that it had doctored the video and uploaded it to the internet.

Host Jan Böhmermann claimed his team had used digital editing software to insert the indecent gesture. Then it showed another clip it said was the original, in which Mr Varoufakis made the same remarks but without the gesture. A regretful Mr Böhmermann told his audience they were behind the “fake” Stinkefinger footage.

It didn’t take long, however, until the fake was itself revealed as a fake.

„Dieser Witz hat nie stattgefunden.”

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