Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Hanging on to the old German phrases

Note: While Ernie is in the hospital, this post was added by Ernie's daughter Becky from a recent email she got from Ernie after he had corresponded with a distant Margheim cousin in Florida who hosts the Margheim Blog.
I had to chuckle when my cousin Martin mentioned "Box Ach Umm". When I was a kid, I remember what my folk scalled me when they wanted to CALL ME DOWN. There were about three terms as I remember, "Kalya", "Boop", and "Beepya". Then there was an expression, “So Dahr Schlock and schtayscht you nahgich”. Translated, that would say “One wallup and you stand naked”. Another expression was “Gaybe Acht” translated as “Look Out”. My parents talked German among themselves most of the time. Mom talked to her cronies on the telephone in German until she died in 1986. I remember the expressio ”Ach Yach”, with a guteral “ch” as a response to what the other lady said to Mom. Sort of like “Oh Yes” . We had sort of an inside joke, when Mom died we said “What will Mrs. Muth do now that Grandma can not gab with her in German for three hours each day. It was an assumption, when we called Grandma Margheim, the line would be busy. She and Mrs. Muth, or Mollie Popp were on the telephone talking German.
During my Army days, I was in Germany 15 months (1944/1945). A lot of my German language came back as they called upon me to serve as an interpretor quite often. We had a kid that came to the USA from Germany as a teenager, and knew the PROPER German fluently that our company used most, but there were reservations among some of our outfit that did not trust him and he was disliked by quite a few enlisted men. (Not the officers however). He was a volunteer USA enlisted man. Loyal American I would say. In fact after May 1945 enroute back to the POE (Port Of Embarkation--France) from our Czech border, to return to the States, at his invitation (pre-arranged via telephone with his family), our convoy stayed over night in a school house in the Germany town where HIS FAMILY lived and his Dad was the Buergermeister, (Mayor). The whole community WELCOMED US IN STYLE. I think we even had the opportunity to watch a movie that evening. It was a very small town, and had no combat damage at all. Off the beaten path I presume. His last name was “Wenz”.

2 comments:

Harriet said...

Thanks for the post. What an interesting story. The Ziegler's in my family came from Germany. I have heard that my Great Great Grandfather, Jacob Ziegler spoke German. Jacob was born in the U.S. and the family had been here many years but Jacob did know some German.

Greta Koehl said...

I love it when people tell stories about language! This reminds me a bit of the "Bohemians" (Czechs) in my part of Texas; they were the same way about being able to speak in Czech with one another when they could, especially the women.