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LANGUAGE AND CULTURE

German word of the day: Die Schokoladenseite

Improve your German skills by taking a bite into today’s word of the day.

German word of the day: Die Schokoladenseite
German has an interesting term for your most photogenic side. Photo: DPA

Very few people are lucky enough to look good in every photo. Most of us have learned (through trial and error) which angles are most flattering when it comes to group photos, selfies and everything in between.

Germans looking for the perfect Instagram shot have a special term to describe this very modern struggle.

They would say that they are trying to capture their Schokoladenseite, which translates literally as ‘chocolate side’. 

Chocolate is known for being sweet and delicious the world over, and so it should come as little surprise that Schokoladenseite refers to a person’s ‘good’ side. 

READ ALSO: Nine tasty German food and drink idioms

The term is not just used in the context of a person’s appearance, however: it can also refer to the better parts of their personality or their more endearing traits. 

Showing your Schokoladenseite is therefore not just important for Facebook profile pictures, but also for job interviews, or the first encounter with your future in-laws!

Example sentences:

Linda hat sich heute von ihrer Schokoladenseite gezeigt! 

Linda showed her good side today!

Warum hast du so viele Selfies gemacht? 

Ich versuche, meine Schokoladenseite zu finden. 

Why have you taken so many selfies?

I’m trying to find the most flattering angle. 

 

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GERMAN WORD OF THE DAY

German phrase of the day: Auf dein Nacken

Get to know this colloquial phrase and use it with your German friends.

German phrase of the day: Auf dein Nacken

Why do I need to know auf dein Nacken?

This is the kind of phrase you’ll never find in a German textbook, but you might hear it in the wild so it’s good to learn it for informal situations. 

What does it mean?

The phrase auf dein Nacken! literally translates to on your neck and means something like ‘this is on you’ or ‘Your treat’ or ‘you pay’. You can also use it on yourself with mein/meinen Nacken which then means: ‘this is on me’, ‘my treat’ or ‘I got this’. 

You can use this expression in the context of paying for something, for example when the bill comes in a restaurant or if it’s your round at the pub you might hear this from friends. 

However, the phrase can also mean something like: ‘I’ll do it’ or ‘I’ll handle it’ so it doesn’t just have to apply to money situations. In this context, it’s more about when someone takes the lead on something. 

A group of friends clink beers in Leer, Lower Saxony.

The German expression “auf dein Nacken” is used among friends. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Lars Klemmer

For the eagle-eyed among you, you’ll notice that the grammar of this phrase isn’t technically correct. It should be: auf deinEN Nacken. 

The imperfect grammar represents the origins of the phrase, which comes from young people speaking and chatting on social media or text.

However, sometimes when people use it to apply to themselves, they use the correct grammar: Auf meinen Nacken. But it can be shortened too. Basically, don’t worry too much about grammar rules on this one and just go with the flow!

The phrase has become more mainstream after it was a runner up in the German Youth Word of the Year 2018.  

READ ALSO: What are the meanings behind Germany’s youth words of the year?

Keep in mind that this expression is for use with your good friends, not with your German boss (unless you’re on very friendly terms).

Use it like this: 

– Hey, hast du Bock auf Binge-Watching Netflix mit Sushi?

Auf dein Nacken oder wie?

– Hey, are you up for binge-watching Netflix with sushi?”

– Your treat or what?

If you want to use the expression yourself, you can easily integrate it into an informal conversation over text. For instance, if you are taking on a bill or a task, write: Auf meinen Nacken and everyone will know that you are performing the action, paying for something or taking the lead.

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