The opinions expressed in this article are that of the author and are not representative of the views of The Hysteria Collective as a whole.
I’m no football expert. To me the man I once saw with his old dog in my former home town was simply the guy in the Walkers crisps ads. At some point I learnt the truth about Gary and I know what a nutmeg kick is (don’t ask me about offside rule just yet…). I remember doing one back in year 6, my friend and I decided to play some matches with the boys during some of the lunchtime breaks.
Now the UEFA Euro 2020 has been and gone, (called 2020 due to last year’s postponement) you may have seen the awful match between Scotland and England (0-0) before witnessing England’s success against Germany (2-0). But that match wasn’t just about England’s win, as the attention turned towards a young, crying German girl in the crowd. Online abuse was directed at her on social media, leading Joel Hughes to set up a JustGiving page to highlight that, ‘not everyone in the UK is horrible.’ Incredibly, over £35,000 was raised. The perpetrators of the schadenfreude (an English and German word deriving from the German words ‘Schaden’ meaning damage and ‘Freude’ meaning joy) would probably argue they were just having a laugh but what do they really think about Germany and German people? Are they also the same people who hated learning German at school or never learnt it and wouldn’t visit Germany let alone any country outside the UK? If they did study it, I hope they at least got some amusement out of the ‘Ich liebe dich’ joke (if you’re still unsure, ‘dich’ means you). Perhaps when schools teach about the nutter Hitler in history lessons they should couple it with discussions on the current xenophobia in Britain.
Anyway, to those who decided to be mean towards the Kind (German word for child) who is probably already pretty good at English and knows that it’s ‘you were’ and not ‘you was’, let’s hope they can be kind and would pop into Lidl (a German company) to buy someone a delicious bar of Kinder (the German word for children and one of the brands of the Italian company Ferrero), maybe a Kinder bueno (‘bueno’ is Spanish for good) and tell them that they are ‘wunderbar’ (the German for wonderful). These people could be dog lovers and would recognise a sausage dog, the more formal term being Dachshund. They can now go on to share the knowledge that in German ‘Dachs’ means badger and ‘Hund’ signifies dog. Let’s hope they aren’t too xenophobic to be against having a German Shepherd.
And to anyone who happens to one day see their German doppelgänger (also a German word, ‘Doppel’ is German for duplicate/double, ‘-gänger’ is German for goer), surprise them even more by greeting them with a ‘Wie geht’s?’ (pronounced like vee gates), which is the German equivalent of how are you?
Image courtesy of Christian Wiediger.