Old 4th Jun 2012, 13:40
  #28 (permalink)  
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Germany
Posts: 73

Being german myself, here are my "two cents"...

Sadly, your poor daughter experienced some strange phenomena in german behaviour (mind: I don't talk about every single german behaving like an idiot, but there is indeed some kind of behaviour pattern, sometimes...)

Ze German Stare
German national "soul" does not know much about privacy in general, much less regarding staring in public. Depending on where you are in germany or where your german guinea pig grew up, you'll find the "German Stare" somewhere from mildly strange to really annoying. There are regions in southern germany where you get the impression of being surrounded by hobby dentists trying to examine your mouth...

Ze German Face
Never try to say something like "Why are you looking so grumpy at me?" to German. Most likely you'll get the answer: "Ich hab halt so ein Gesicht!" ("That's my face, live with it"). As the "gentleman" factor is not a part of German (pseudo-)culture, most germs (sic!) won't really think about what they do to others looking grumpy or angry. Ever thought about the fact that Botox is not really the megaseller in germany? Because no one cares for his angry wrinkles above his/hers nose...

Ze German Envy
There's one really driving force in many germans: Envy. There's even a well known Wilhelm Busch citation which was modified to fit even better: "Neid ist die Deutsche Form der Anerkennung" - "Envy is a german's way of appreciativeness"
So don't mind, your daughter may simply be too pretty :-)

Everything written before, including Paraguay (thank you for that, I literally laughed my a. off - reminds me of the the Pan Am pilot in FRA being asked: "have you never been here before?", answering "I was, in 1944, but I didn't land..."), is abolutely right. I guess your daughter concentrated every german nuisance in behaviour on this trip. A pretty young lady with an obviously uncomfortable older wife seated in her vicinity, with a german stare, a german mindset, a german face and an absolute disrespect for other people's privacy.

Please, tell your daughter that I'm sorry for what she experienced. Hopefully, her trip was not really wasted by this. Furthermore please tell her, that there are uncountable Germans out there not being grumpy, not being aggressive, not being angry for British Self Defence some decades ago. Some of us are even fans of you and of the descendanies (spel?) you created around the globe (US, CN, AUS, NZ... just kidding, I know that these are colonies ;-) )

Ah, one thing left: How to react when being german-stared-upon? Smile. It won't change the stare, but it's funny as hell to see the reactions... ;-)

Germans aren't really bad. One should not allow them to be "lead" by strange figures from neighbouring countries and they should always be taken with a grain of salt.

Kind regards,

PS: Currently living in Germany, I experienced an english man in his 40s waiting for his wife inside his car on an Aldi car park. After a few minutes of german stare from every single person walking by, he was short of having some kind of stroke. I sincerely believed he would attack the next passer by. Sadly, I fully understood what he went through.
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