• Germany's news in English
 

Ten tell-tale signs that you've gone native

The Local · 21 Jun 2012, 11:48

Published: 21 Jun 2012 11:48 GMT+02:00

Take note - it is easy to become German without realizing it. Many of The Local's readers are English-speaking expatriates who have lived in this great country for some time, and as part of our service to them, we feel it is our duty to diagnose signs when they may have adopted the native culture a little too much.

Obviously, integrating the immigrant community is an important part of successful social cohesion, but beware - if you are suddenly outraged when public transport comes a little too late, or you are beginning to enjoy public nudity too much, you may fall in to embarrassing situations back in front of your family members.

It's fine, laudable, even vital to become semi-German, when settling in the Vaterland - but no one ever, EVER, goes FULL GERMAN.

Here are the tell-tale symptoms.

The Local/bk

Related links:

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

13:39 June 21, 2012 by animal_politicum
Apart from the panic shopping, nudity within the family, and functioning public transportation system this seems to be an apt description of Swedes...
14:20 June 21, 2012 by lucksi
Being irritated when someone shows up uninvited is being German?

Really?

There are countries that like that?

I do not care if I was just playing a game or doing work, if you show up uninvited, that's just plain rude to me.
16:10 June 21, 2012 by Grebo
Great list. Very entertaining to read.

I have been here for several years and the only thing on the list that applies to me is being more comfortable with nudity. However, I am a convert of waiting to drink making a cheers when having a beer with friends. Red lights are for hand ringing sissies :P

@Lucksi - my friends are always welcome to stop by, if I am busy I will just tell them so. I find it strange that you think otherwise so yeah, it might be a cultural thing.
20:36 June 21, 2012 by Englishted
So close to the mark it hurts well done.
20:49 June 21, 2012 by lucksi
Of course my friends are welcome. But it's not too much to ask to phone first instead of just showing up at my door. You know, to give me time to put on my pants again :D

Or as someone else put it "You might be German if you think that the latest reform on government healthcare is an acceptable debate topic at a party"
23:52 June 22, 2012 by EinWolf
I still remember a bunch of Germans shouting the amount of the fine for jaywalking when I and my date crossed the street at 0200 (2:00 am) on a hella cold February morning before the green man showed himself.
17:26 June 23, 2012 by wenddiver
Maybe showing up un-invited is why we are getting more comfortable with nudity!!!!!!!

Wo-hoooo!!!!!!!!!!!!!
20:05 June 23, 2012 by Flint
Wearing socks with sandals.
15:53 June 24, 2012 by CoolBlueIce
Being concerned about "showing up uninvited" didn't seem to deter Germany from "dropping in" to France and other countries in WWI and WWII. Go figure.
17:03 June 24, 2012 by JAMessersmith
@CoolBlueIce

What are you talking about? Napoleon invited them over in 1805.
19:37 June 24, 2012 by Aelfgifu1
I will never wear socks with sandals. NEVER. Good god, I still have my pride.
12:04 June 26, 2012 by mesca
Hmmm I don't know what kind of large western city you live in but I can find shops open everyday until 8:00pm, 9:00pm, 10:00pm often and even midnight. Lots of them.

Then, germans DO cross at the red light. Older people and parents with kids generally don't, but it's for the best.

Doner is eaten as a normal meal in numerous european countries, nothing german here.

Stage 8 is rude everywhere and stage 9 is experienced in many countries, english speaking countries as well...

Then, never heard or experienced stage 10...

Hey The Local you know what, stop the stereotypes lists...
12:40 June 26, 2012 by Kölner
Who dangles their private parts in front of family-members?

You have an unhealthy imagination. Youŕe overstimulated with German sex-appeal,

it's way off your chart, easy to understand your infatuation with German

bodies. Strange that sentiments like these should come out of the same corner as

the invitations to "show us your tits" during springbreak... do that here, and you have a

lawsuit to cope with for sure, at least the sexual-harrassment-scam is true.

Shops close at 5? Where? In down-town-Liverpool because the cash is tight?

A little mix-up?
12:09 June 28, 2012 by CoolBlueIce
My German relatives didn't find this list nearly as funny as I did. Imagine that. ;-)

@mesca...

Oh lighten up. You should hear the stereotypes the Germans come up with for people in the USA. ... I'm not offended by their good-natured kidding. The difference is, the Germans (well... at least my relatives) can dish it out a lot better than they can take it.
00:29 June 29, 2012 by amber_and_sally
How about this one: You have started referring to your cell phone or mobile phone as a "Handy" in your native language.
08:30 June 29, 2012 by insight101
@mesca

We are making generalities. Yes, it's true that some Germans cross against a red light, but it is a general truth that far more people in your culture than in ours stand there and stare at the "Heiligenampel" as though it is an all-knowing deity. :) I see a young man (about 17 years old) stand at the light on a T-junction every morning near the bus stop. No cars are coming in either direction, but he presses the button and waits for a good solid minute. Then the light changes and stops ten cars, and he goes. So that's 11 people waiting instead of no one waiting. And that's efficiency...?

and yes the shops do close in general earlier here. Plus they are often closed on Sunday and others have "Ruhetag" usually on Mondays, but that can vary as well from shop to shop...

You demonstrate another typical German trait...That you all know better than the rest of us. That's why Germans regularly insist on knowing my language better than I do.
12:24 July 3, 2012 by thomass66
Oh no, I can't let my German friends and family see this article. Here I've been all these years as an American who has spent nearly twenty years here, married local gal and have two wonderful children; I was just hoping to maintain my "Americanism" - too late for that, especially after reading this list :-) Thank goodness I still have enough of my modesty left not to inflict the horrors of walking around in sandals with black socks and with my "Willi" hanging out for the world to see; that said, just count yourselves among the fortunate - LMAO :-) I guess that I still have a little glimmer of hope of not becoming totally native, not that it's all bad. Great and entertaining piece none-the-less :-)
17:16 July 6, 2012 by tallblackman
12 Years here and yet I,

Still almost get mowed down by cyclists in Munich when visiting and.

Still get in the car on the wrong side when I want to drive.

Stil love a proper english builders breakfast on a Sunday morning with lashings of tea followed later by the rost Fleisch Totties and Yorshire pud!

I am still sacastic as possible yet no one gets it.

And i still dont find German jokes funny!!

But My local born girlfreind say I am almost intergrated.

I think its another of these German jokes :(
Today's headlines
Germans still love couch and TV in their free time
Sitting front of the TV - Germany's favourite pastime. Photo: DPA

Germans still love couch and TV in their free time

10 hours ago

A new study shows that Germans' best-loved activity is sitting in front of the idiot box - and when they're not doing that they're probably slumped in front of a computer.

This Week in History
The day that 'sealed East Germany's fate'
At 3am on August 23rd, MPs applauded as the People's Chamber set a date for reunification. Photo: DPA

The day that 'sealed East Germany's fate'

9 hours ago

After the Berlin Wall was destroyed in 1989, East and West Germany still had a long way to go before they could become one nation. But in August 1990, the date was finally set for the birth of reunified Germany.

Migrant crisis
Merkel: Austria tragedy a ‘warning’ for Europe
Forensic experts investigate a truck in which refugees were found dead as it stands by the Autobahn in Austria. Photo: DPA.

Merkel: Austria tragedy a ‘warning’ for Europe

9 hours ago

The "horrible" discovery on Thursday of between 20 and 50 dead migrants on a truck in Austria is a warning to Europe to get to grips with the migrant crisis, Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Thursday. Other leading German politicians laid out their plans for handling the influx of refugees.

Facebook to meet gov on Internet hate-mongering
Are Facebook keeping a close enough eye on hate speech? Photo: DPA

Facebook to meet gov on Internet hate-mongering

16 hours ago

Update: Facebook on Thursday accepted an invitation from Germany's justice minister to discuss doing more to purge the social network of racist posts after widespread complaints from users.

Berlin orchestra angers Israel with Iran concert
Renowned conductor Daniel Barenboim is under attack by Israel's government. Photo: DPA

Berlin orchestra angers Israel with Iran concert

12 hours ago

Israeli-Argentinian conductor Daniel Barenboim is hoping to take one of Germany's top orchestras to Iran to perform a concert there, the Berlin State Opera said Thursday, drawing angry protests from Israel.

Netzpolitik Affair
Merkel's office 'hid knowledge of probe'
The Chancellery. Photo: Heinz Albers

Merkel's office 'hid knowledge of probe'

13 hours ago

After digital rights blog Netzpolitik revealed that state prosecutors were investigating two of its journalists for treason, Chancellor Angela Merkel's office reacted with shock. Now Spiegel reports that the Chancellery knew about the investigation in April.

Internet surveillance
Spies 'traded Germans' data for US software'
Photo: DPA

Spies 'traded Germans' data for US software'

14 hours ago

Media reports on Thursday alleged that German spies traded access to information about the country to the US National Security Agency (NSA) in exchange for surveillance software.

Man City snap up De Bruyne for €80 million
Kevin De Bruyne. Photo: DPA

Man City snap up De Bruyne for €80 million

16 hours ago

Manchester City have signed one of the stars of last season's Bundesliga campaign. But he didn't come cheap.

NATO troops join in large German training exercise
NATO paratroopers training in Romania on Wednesday. Photo: DPA

NATO troops join in large German training exercise

17 hours ago

More than 1,000 NATO paratroopers jumped from aircraft above Germany on Wednesday in one of the alliance's largest airborne training exercises in Europe since the Cold War ended, the US army said.

Lightning strikes at least twice in Cottbus
Lightning over Germany. Photo: DPA

Lightning strikes at least twice in Cottbus

1 day ago

If you feel like you are an unlucky person by nature you probably want to avoid Cottbus. A study released on Wednesday shows that the old wisdom that lightning never strikes twice is far from true in the town near the Polish border.

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS

National
Weekend of anti-refugee violence shocks Germany
National
Half of Germans 'have had sex in their car'
Society
Deadly stew spooks home vegetable gardeners
Politics
The man who brought two Germanies together
Features
Where to get your culture fix in Cologne
Education
Fairytale world of Brothers Grimm brought to life
Rhineland
Thieves leave 1,000 open beers untasted
National
Way to some Germans' hearts is through their wallets
National
Germany's biggest challenge: European refugee crisis
Travel
Where to get your adrenaline pumping in Germany
Technology
Could thieves hack into luxury cars?
What to watch out for when snapping your lunch
National
German lefties through history
National
The fight over prostitution heats up
National
Merkel: migrants, not Greece, are the real challenge
Features
How I explained the Queen to the Germans
Education
Why Germany does 'back-to-school' traditions better
National
Germans are ‘not how foreigners think’
National
A mum and daughter reunite 70 years after WWII
Sport
Bra stops bullet in hunting mishap miracle
National
Cows trample German woman to death in Graubünden Alps
Business & Money
Start-up helps new Berliners short cut bureaucracy
National
The 1,000s of Germans massacred after the Second World War
Sport
Germany star scores own goal with PR gaffe
Features
'Women-only' parking: sensible or sexist?
Politics
Satire and reality blur in parody party's strife
National
13-year-old boy detained for trying to join Isis
Culture
Berlin restaurant serves up Greek Crisis Menu
Rhineland
Doctor on trial after woman wakes in morgue
Society
Six odd things Germans do in the summer
Society
Police bust kinky Bavarian couple over painful love-making
Politics
Merkel brings Palestinian girl to tears
Hamburg
Amateur archaeologist finds Nazi gold hoard
National
Could Merkel learn a lesson in love from this doppelganger?
Travel
Why you should stay in Germany for the summer holidays
Sport
German press tell Schweinsteiger 'good riddance'
National
Hamburg gets a bouncing 100kg baby girl
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

6,945
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd