Thursday, 18 September 2014

" You Speak Pidgin Too? "

This art of communication leaves a lot to be desired.

The moment you hear yourself using it, is a cringe worthy one. Quite frankly I tend to use it too. How awful, yet I can't help myself. Whoever taught us to use our language in a pared down pidgin variety?

Of course pidgin English is a great example and a lot of folk used it back in South Africa to converse with non English speakers. Stupid really, because how else does one learn the language.

We were in Hungary yesterday and I am ashamed to confess that the German I spoke had a touch of pidgin about it. I know I tend to pare down the language and speak slower yet there was no stopping me. Another cringe worthy moment that even elicited a shin kick from Bob so that I would stop it!

Isn't it arrogant of us to assume that the other person is a simpleton merely because they aren't fluent in our own language?

With Bob still learning German ( and he is getting better by the day ) or rather Austrian, no make that Eisenberg-ish, he is often spoken to in pidgin German / Austrian or Eisenbergish...gosh, even he sometimes notices it!

For Bob it is rather difficult as each village has their own accent. Even the tourists from Vienna, Oberwart or the next village over, will moan that they cannot understand the local dialect. Imagine how Bob is faring...

Even certain items have different names in Burgenland. Take the humble potato and its three different names:

Grumpian, Erdapfel, Kartoffel
Warm or hot weather gets sometimes described as:
warm, heiss, hoas

the last one is pronounced the same way as the English word horse and you can imagine that Bob for a while thought the locals were talking about a horse at the same time as sweating up a storm...

Another feature of this language called " Pidgin " ( whatever the base language is ) is that we tend to over pronounce each word. Gosh, sometimes we accompany this with a pinch of spittle and large arm movements.

Let me know if you have ever conversed in Pidgin...

Biggi