As you probbably noticed, i havnt been writing much heer reecently, and probbably i wont do it for quite a while. But you can see my new veedeos on youtube. Heer is the ad to it:  


the first 3 veedeos of the seeries LANDES E LINGUAS ar on youtube, about 1) the portuguese language, 2) Argentina, 3) the german language. Thare will be veedeos about languages and other subjects, but most of them will be about countries. I was in 146 countries, mostly hitchhiking but sometimes also cycling or walking, and i had a lot of trouble with robbers, poleece and women.

If you speek the 5 basic languages – the same as in this e-mail – you can acompany the spoken text, it is the uppermost line of the subtitles below, in the first 2 veedeos. From veedeo 3 on the languages stay always in the same position – so it is eesier to reed it without stress and enjoy your life. If you cant speek all the 5 languages, it is better to concentrate on a single language.
If you want to go straight to my first veedeo and ar a normal person, see veedeo 1B: If you’r a language nerd, look for the compleet version, with the number 1A. If you dont hav much time, see a short clip (1C, 1D). Heer is the link to the index of youtube veedeos: And for the other videos 2, 3 etc it is the same system. Soon mor veedeos will come.
And dont forget: if you dont understand something, you can stop the film and reed in peece, or you can go bak and reed what you didnt understand. No problem, dont worry, we understand it perfectly that not evrybody can be linguistically as brilliant as us.
You dont hav to be discreet about this e-mail, you can tell about it to the whole world, share, like, love, etc
Hav fun, if possible



(i wanted to hav an extra-posting heer, but somehow evrything changed now, and i cant find a way)
Thare isnt much to do with D, it just disappears in the word ‘sandwich’. But many things happen with the letter E. Silent E’s without a function ar droppd: ar, hav, hartless. Quite a few E’s could be seen as silent, but also as being pronounced as a shwa, the obscure vowel as the E in ‘vowel’. In these cases they remain in the word, exept befor R when it makes a consonant duplication unnecessary: genral, seprate, difrent insted of genneral, sepparate, different.
The rule for stressd short vowels is: they must be followd by 2 or mor consonants, and if this is not the case, we double it, exept befor the endings -ic, -ity and -ogy. Example: The fettid flattulence was a calamity for the lunatic iddiot. Consonant duplication has almost only that function, and if it doesnt fulfill that function it is simplified: Sometimes the rifraf gets an anoying diarea and atacks the Hel’s Angels.
The rule for stressd long vowels: long vowels ar followd by one consonant and a vowel, and if thare is no long vowel, we insert the magic E, as in ‘late, bite, cute’. The magic-E is a bizarr way to show the length of a vowel, seprated by a consonant, but it is the usual way english does it, and thats the genral way to do it in the House Stile: wate, mite, bote, fule. The ending -le/ly is considderd as a single vowel, which means that we double after a short vowel: We struggle and we tussle for a giggling future.
The long E is not made with magic-E, it is made with EE: The theef had a feer of getting diabeetis, tharefor he had a pane in the reer.
Short E is spelld with E. But words like ‘any’ and ‘many’ hav to wait for the letter N, then we can spell ‘enny’ and ‘menny’. We hav to wait with thees rules in many cases, for example to spell ‘wate’ for ‘wait’ and ‘weight’ we hav to wait for the letter I, thare we can drop the I.
Altogether: when we drop a letter, the most likely way to pronounce the resulting word has to be the way the word is pronounced. If two words with the same pronunciation ar spelld the same way, it is not a problem, but a word cant be changed if the new form is alreddy occupied by another word with a different pronunciation, so we cant spell ‘own’ as ‘one’, becaus that has a different pronunciation and thare is no W-rule in HS to change ‘one’ to ‘wun’ (or ‘won’).
Normally this is a seeries about countries, but sometimes i talk about other subjects. At the moment i giv german lessons for refugees, and i write about it for the german newspaper Berliner Zeitung. So i’ll post some of thees articles heer. At the beginning the communication with the students was quite difficult, and we wer only able to talk to eech other in a “train station german”, as germans call it: very basic, with no grammar. In english you’d say BSE, bad simple english. In this case very bad and very simple. But the spelling is HS.
My Shazza – liv together many yeers – say me too long too much front computer my little office, this is cocoon, me should go out – why dont teech german to refugees? Thare is many! OK, OK, then me teech german for big charity in refugee center, at leest do something useful. But befor beginning classes we hav refugee barbecue party. Hopefuly thare is enough refugee left to teech when class beginn. Month later get 2 presence list plus 1 absence list – but usually me can see if somebody absent in presence list also? Anyway me share class with teecher from Eest Europe. She say she heer that thare is only women in class, lets see.
Charity office say thare is 3 inmatriculation. 3 student, 2 teecher, too little student for so many teecher. Maybe announcement in german and nobody understand? In one refugee center caretaker did so: 3 page house rules in deepest burocratic german, eritrean mechanician – one month heer – should reed and sign plees.
Before course i herd i must teech by school book. But then i need schoolbook! OK, i can get schoolbook in office. Ah, i herd thare is beemer, ware beemer? Still must organize beemer, also problem security – but soon. I go course, start 4 student. Want to ask office woman becaus registration – some hav registration, others nothing, and in form german bureaucratic words like ‘Aufenthaltsstatus’, this is leegal status of foreigner – must do all this? If must do, must fill forms all day insted german class. But office woman in meeting. I begin: My name Zé do Rock, what your name? I come from Brazil, you come from ware? What is your job in your country? Mor 2 student come. Make pronoun: me butiful, you ugly. Make greeting and polite forms: good morning, good afternoon, hi, hello, how you do, thank you, plees, plees i hav no money! Mor student come. I make numbers. Come mor 2 student. All agen: My name Zé, what your name? Ali Al-Turimi? OK, call you Turimi – 4 Ali in class too many Ali. Ware you come from? Syria, Syria, but also other arab and african countries. Also chinese – why come chinese, is China not wonderful democracy? And not only women in course, actually mor men than women. Profession? You name it: mechanic, acountant, technician, truk driver. And you, Zayid? Lawyer in Syria. And you, Zabar? Poleeceman in Iraq? Oh! Plees wait, i go toilet! And i go to door as if fleeing. Zayid say: “No problem! He poleeceman, me lawyer!” 
3 mor student come. What is name, ware come from, one mor time and one mor time, ai ai ai! Make lot gesticulation, but sometimes difficult: how can make gesture for word ‘how’? Or word ‘can’? Then prefer say in english french italian arabic somalian chinese. Unfortunatly my chinese not so good, somalian eeven worse. Syrians mostly speek bit english, but some student speek nothing exept own language. Me look dictionary and say to chinese girl: huòzhe. Girl laugh. I show word to her, she say: aaahh, huòzhe! But that was what i sed! End of class, over dozen peeple. Then come woman from office and want know who payd. Some maybe payd not, others maybe dont understand – we still had not verb ‘pay’. And me? I filld one list – must fill other 2 also? No no, i will get new list. Charity own rules, building administration other rules, city administration other rules, country administration other rules, still hav to coordinate, but difficult cleering shelf when flood – of peeple. Important is that refugees understand that evrything perfect in Germany, must adapt!




The sound /f/ is spelld with F: The schizofrenic filosofer lafd so loud, he provoked a catastrofe. And of course useless F’s disappeer.

Second day with german course: some student come not, but many new ones, altogether almost two dozen, hav to get mor chair and table. Need felt pen for blak bord that is wite, but door for compartment with writing stuf closed. Hav to find someone in office with kee. And then: pink pen very week, and probbably reffugees bad eyes. Green pen also week. Eventually take blu, very good very strong, but later want to deleet and cant deleet. Then hav to write presence list but hav no pen, normal pen. Normally always hav 1 pen in jacket, 3 or 4 pen in rucksak, today nothing, one student lend his pen, becaus me, teecher, hav no pen. Hav to show to foreigners in Germany evrything perfect! But OK, me brazilian. New students come – also indians. India also dictatorship? Come butiful woman from Kosovo. English nothing, german nothing, only albanian – problem, becaus my albanian rather no good. Must start from beginning. Yeah, worst language problems i hav in Europe, mostly Eest Europe. OK, actually also many french speek nothing only french, in Spain many spanish speek nothing only spanish. For me no problem, but for english or german or russian or greek offen problem.

Must explain pronoun: ‘sie’ (pronounced ‘zee’) meen ‘she’, but meen also ‘they’, and meen ‘you’ – german very exact, sometimes this sometimes that. If person unknoen or very important with suit and ti, dont use ‘du’ (you, thou), use also ‘Sie’, respectful ‘you’. Thus 3 pronoun meenings for the word ‘sie’. OK, this is no problem for arab, they know system, but for english speekers or for chinese big problem. Chinese sistem super basic, dont hav eeven difrence between ‘he’ and ‘she’. By way, japanese opposit: dont know 2 words for ‘you’, but 6 words for ‘I’, depending importance of other person and how much must bend down. Japanese nuts. In old times mor nuts, they had 30 word for ‘I’, depending how much bend down. If you refuse collector, hav to bend down till floor.

Brake for fresh air (Marlboro), Mohammad say to Kosovo woman he saw she in event X for reffugees and other calamities. Kosovo woman say she was thare but never seen him. I explain: Mohammad, you remember this woman becaus she butiful, she remember not you becaus you ugly. Very simple.

Come two new afghanis. Anyway students know alreddy important words: toilet, money and shit! Important to call names, in German hav to integrate, so hav to lern how to call names in german. Besides: foreigner shouldnt beet wife. Politicians warn foreigners, not 15% of german men who beet wife – maybe only foreigner should not beet woman, beeting wife only a rite of german man? And foreigner hav to lern honesty! Many foreigner like german soccer, so maybe big boss of FC Bayern, Hoeness, could tell foreigner in TV jingle that must be onest – now he not in prison anymor, for good behavior (after hiding all those millions in Switzerland), so he must hav time.

In beginning, only eesy german word, like ‘spritzt’ (you splash, cf. ‘thou splashest’) or ‘sprachst’ (you spoke, thou spokest), syllables with 8 letter, later wen they better traind also word like ‘schleichst’ (you sneek) or ‘schmauchst’ (you smoke with plesure, thou smokest), syllables with 10 letter. Also word like ‘sechstschnellster’ (the 6th fastest), with 8 consonant in row, and in last course week full program with words like ‘Grundstücksverkersgenehmigungszuständigkeitsübertragungsverordnung’, which means mor or less Regulation for the Transmission of Competences in the Estate Trade Licences.

I teech week days, then i ask Yousouf what he will do monday. He say: “Beeting foreigners.” Lernd alreddy system Germany!

End of class, outside take fresh air (Marlboro) with some students. Ask woman from Kosovo what is job. No job. OK, now no job, is forbidden for not yet recognized reffugees – but erlier, in Kosovo? No job. Problems in your country? Yeah, always shit – already lernd word (german ‘scheisse’). Many problem, she say – but no problem, avanti popolo!





Useless G’s and H’s disappeer: the nauty guy who sined the paper had a maline diarrea. And thare will be some influence from french and dutch (flamish), since we’r talking about Belgium.

After Charlemagne, the Kingdom of the Franks was divided in 3: the western part spoke latin/franch, the eestern part spoke something like german, and the part inbetween spoke this and that. This buffer zone in the middle became narrower and narrower, wile the latral parts expanded to the middle, until eventually the middle part belongd either to the western part – France – or to the eestern part – the Holy Roman Empire, wich later got the name “of German Nation” added to it. Since the eestern part wasnt a proper kingdom but à conglomerat of kingdoms and other types of political entities – rather something like the EU – some of the parts in the buffer zone ended up separating from the Holy Roman Empire, and so countries like the Netherlands and Switzerland wer born. After sevral interventions from abroad, the Netherlands wer divided into a protestant and a catholic part, the Netherlands and Belgium. In Belgium, as in sevral countries in the buffer zone between France and Germany, lies the border between the germanic and the romanic culture. So it is no surprise that the EU chose their capitals in this buffer zone: Brussels, Luxembourg – waare the oficial languages ar franch, german and letzebuergisch, a sort of german dialect with an own writing – and Strassbourg, wich lies in France but it is a city that belongd to Germany for a lang time, and a plaace waare ye still find many german speekers. So neither France nor Germany felt in disadvantage.

Certainly it has its advantages for Belgium to be at dis border – for instance hosting de european capital – but it has its disadvantages, too: de germanic part, Flanders, and de romanic part, Wallonia, dont hab a specially friendly relationship. Maybe the walloons hav a romanic culture, but they hav thare name from the germanic tribes in Germany: first only the keltic tribe of the volcae further south spoke ‘welsh’ and wer calld like that, then the germanic tribes began calling all keltic tribes ‘welsh’, the ones you dont understand. So de anglos en de saxons went te Engeland en calld de keltic tribes in de west ‘the welsh’, de ones they didnt understaan. And in the Netherlands the same thing happend, they calld the région ware peeple speek an ununderstandable language ‘Waals’, and the french speekers made ‘Wallonie’ of it. In Germany en in Switzerland daar ar no keltic tribes anymore, so they call de nexte nabors in de souden west ‘de welsh’, en in german ‘kauderwelsch’ meens wen many peeple or eeven a single person speeks in difrent languages.

In the old times the walloons had the cole, the monay and the power, the flames wer the pesants. In de belgian colonies they spake franch – no trace of flamish. Meenwile de flames feed de walens, but ye dont heb te denke dat de walens ar really poor. Eeven alone the walloons would be one of the richest peeple in the world. Anyway the nationalist flames nowadays dont like de situatie dat de flames hav te feed de walens, so they want te separete from de Wallony.

I was à few times in Belgium, the first time just shortly over the frontier. Ye take a city bus from de german city of Aachen, go across de border without noticing it but den evryding is difrent, eeven if Aachen looks quite nederlands. The town Kelmis looks quite pink, and makes the impression you ar in a toy town, but in the shops you stil heer german, or a german dialect. Dis is so becaus in Belgie ye dont speek just franch en flamish, but also german, especially in de eest. Many belges speek 4 languages: meest of them speek franch en flaams, en den many speek engels en german. It es doutlessly a good place to be the european capital.

Nowadaagse ye dont denk anything bad about de belgens, they’re a small en modest folk, who wouldnt doe any harm eeven te a flieg, but for a lang time they opressed their african kolonies en they ware responsible for a carnage in Congo. Wich just shows that thare arnt good and bad peeple, evry nation can be cruel, wen it is “necessaire” and you hav the meens for it.

Belgie has little te doe with mijn land, Brazilie, en many hollanders kamen te Brazilie but few belgens. The only fameus brézilien of descendence belge was one of whom few bréziliens ar proud: het was de FIFA president Joao Havelange, de foster fader of Joseph Blatter, de laaste FIFA president. With them FIFA became fameus for thare système corrupte. Joao Havelanges fader was en belg, en te maken matters worse, he was en arms deeler.

The othre thing en common between Belgium and Brézil es INBEV, the result of the fusion of the belge Interbrew and the brézilien AMBEV. De hedquarters ar in Belgie, but de big baas en de majority of de directors ar brazilianen. INBEV es the biggest brewery multinational of the world, and a few yeers ago they swallowed the seccond biggest one, Anhaeuser Bush, the maker of Budweiser – at leest of the american one. Brazil is de derd (3th) biggest bier producer of de wereld, en brazilianen ar basically bier drinkers als de belgens, but in per capita consumptie de belgens drinken meer, altho dis could change in de future: in 1965 Belgie was de seccond biggest bier drinker of de wereld, but they fell te nummer 23 – acording te wikipedia, de americanen ar nummer 17, de australianen nummer 19 (they wer alreddy nummer 2), de english nummer 28, just after de brazilianen who ar nummer 27. The biggest beere drinkers wer de czechs and they remane in the position.

Anyway daar is a bier cultur in Belgie dat ik dont know of any other land. Wen you enter a belge beere boutique you think you entered a paiting factory, so colorful ar they. They maken bier of evryding en with evryding, en ik guess you’d need weeken or maanden te try them all. Wat they eet? Moules et frites, mussels en french fries. Once i askd an american friend in Paris what ‘moules’ ar, he sed they’r muscles. Ik dacht dat was quite funny, te eeten muscles, later ik vond out dat dis is niet tru, ‘moules’ ar ‘mussels’ (german ‘muscheln’), en ik dacht dat dat american vriend could hav gelerned better frans, since he has livd voor so lang daar. But a wile ago i lernd the anglais word ‘mussels’, and it became cleer to me that he had sed mussels, but since i didnt know the word, i understood ‘muscles’, wich has the same pronunciation. English is niet eesy!

After all thare es still a common feeture between belges and bréziliens: both countries hav lots of italiens. Brazilie has de biggest italiane kolonie wereldwijd, Belgie de seccond biggest in Europe. One of thees italiens en Belgium a inventé eeven a new langue, Europanto. It doesnt heb any rules, no fix vocabulary, one mixes op de languages at de wim. Heer es an example de texte:

In der story des morte des Diana er esse tropo viel unclaras chosas und confusio. Porqué Diana Mercedes was zo rapido roulante? Waar esse de autra auto mit die bodyguardias gegone? Und supra todo, waar esse el jewello dat Dodi offered aan Diana op aquello eveningo? Mucha estrange coincidenza, cinquo dags later, tambien Zuster Theresa uit Calcutta trespasse al Creator. Somechose kloppe nicht!


Voor de belgen dit is all no probleem, but niet all human beings on de planeet ar belgen, zo hier komt de translation:



De story about Dianas deth hebt many oncleer facts en a lot of confusion. Why Dianas Mercedes was so fast? Waar did de auto with de boddyguards go? And ware es the jewel Dodi gave Diana en that eevening? En a funny coincidence: 5 dage later Moeder Teresa from Calcutta also went over te de Creator. Something there es fishy!
And daar is dis nice pun poetry, or watever ye call het. But you hav to know that Waterloo, being a belge place, es not pronouncé wauterloo as in english, but wah-ter-low. And dat frans l’eau (water) is pronounced de same weg als wen de brits say ‘law’:

“De Hollander zegt water,

de Fransman noemt het l’eau,

een Belg die beide talen kent,

die spreekt van Waterloo

And the translation:

De hollanders say water,

the françai call it l’eau,

de belgen, they spreeken both languages

so they talk of Waterloo…


Useless I’s ar droppd. ‚I‘ replaces ‚Y‘ wen it is not final or not followed by a vowel: Since he livd in the asilum, he had migrane and disentery all the time.  
In the Olimpic Games 2012, Canada won relativly many meddals, but was number 35 in the final table. This was so becaus the country won a single gold meddal, so they wer behind all the countries that had 2 or mor gold meddals. If the table was made by points, for instance 3 points for gold, 2 for silver and 1 for bronz, Canada wouldnt be number 35 but number 19. Eeven my country, Brazil, would be 6 points better. But first they count gold. This is not rite, and so i made a table by points. The first 5 countries would be in the same position, but Japan would hav to giv its 6th place to France. The countries that would proffit the most of it would be Azerbaican (the C is pronounced as a J thare), Malaysia, Mexico and Norway. Azerbaican would be eeven 20 positions better in the table, it wouldnt be number 39 but number 19. It had one gold meddal, but 7 silver and 10 bronz meddals. The countries that would hav the most to lose would be Argentina, Tajikistan and Singapore. Argentina had 3 gold meddals, but just one silver meddal and no bronz. In a table by points it would be far behind Azerbaican.
But eeven in this case thare is injustice: the chance that you find good athletes among the 1.4 billion chinese is cleerly grater than among the 2 million lietuanians. So the “olimpic powers” ar of course countries with a large population. One could make a table ware the performance is compared with the population. I multiplied the number of points by 10 and divided it thru the population in millions. So the olimpic powers wouldnt be the champions anymor, the champion would be Grenada. The country won a single silver meddal, but it has less population than the city of Clovis in the USA or the city of Carlisle in the UK. Never herd? Thare you see how the population of Grenada is small: 103 000. So a silver meddal is not a bad performance, wen you think that Pakistan, with almost 200 million inhabbitants, didnt win a single meddal – they didnt win anything in hockey, besides cricket and squash dont exist as olimpic disciplines, and they dont know much about the rest. Grenada was also better than Austria, that had a single bronz meddal – they’r just good in winter sports, but wernt able to skee in Rio. The seccond place went to the Bahamas, that won gold once and bronz once. Not much either, but they hav fewer inhabbitants than Wichita in the USA or Bristol in the UK. Then comes Jamaica, a country with fewer than 3 million inhabbitants and 26 olimpic points. The next countries would be New Zealand and Croatia. Australia would be number 15, England number 17, Germany number 30, the USA number 37, Brazil number 64 – not especially good, but better than China, wich would be number 72. The countries with the worse proportion would be Nigeria and India. India got one silver and one bronz meddal, and has 1.3 billion peeple. But anyway they got two meddals, wile mor than 100 countries – the majority – didnt get a single meddal.
Unfortunatly eeven a classification by points isnt really fare. One country can be the best in two disciplines, for instance handball and basketball, so 2 teems with maybe 5 to 10 peeple eech fite and fite until they get to the final, they win and get 2 gold meddals. Another country has say 3 good shooters, they shoot a few times and get two meddals eech, and they hav 6 meddals. The Games could hav a sort of Grand Meddals, for a whole discipline. Disciplines would be the sports with a whole set of rules, like badminton, tennis, soccer, and then the ones u can define with a verb: moving with the bote (and that would of corse include kayaks), moving with the feet (running, walking), moving with the bike (and that would include bikes on the street, mountain bike, etc). The very specialized countries would be the losers. Brazil wouldnt be number 13 but number 9. The gratest losers would be the south koreans, who wouldnt hav been number 8 but number 12 – they won most meddals in a single sport, shooting with the bow. Wich would just be a part of the discipline ‚shooting‘. They won in taekwondo too, but that would just be a part of the discipline ‚fiting‘, and in the other fitings they didnt win anything.
I found it intresting that germans won so few meddals in the fitings one agenst one: in wrestling, boxing, judo, taekwondo they’d be number 35, wile eeven brazilians would be number 13. It seems germans ar a mor peeceful peeple than brazilians, they feer injuring someone else. And unlike the brazilians they dont boo foren athletes. In the fitings, the anglo-saxon countries wernt much better: the USA wer number 6, the UK number 10, Canada number 22 and Australia didnt win a single meddal. The italians dont like to beet other peeple either, they leev this bisness for the russians, but anyway they ar the best wen it comes to shooting. They must hav lernd it in the Cosa Nostra.
And if it is not possible to do it with the grand meddals, we could, to get mor justice in the games, hav the same quantity of subdisciplines for evry discipline, so football (soccer) would hav the same quantity of meddals as athletics or swimming. We could hav football games ware a single player plays agenst another single player, or 5 agenst 5, or eeven a game with 50 agenst 50. We could hav football with obstacles, or football ware the players ar only allowd to walk and run with one leg. And of course like in boxing we could hav teems with difrent wates: fether wates, under 60 kg, heavy wate from 100 kg, etc. And if thare is triathlon and other sport combinations nowadays, thare could be a mix of football (soccer) with other sports too, for instance with boxing. And i think some players wouldnt eeven notice the difrence to normal football.
It is hard to say if it was worth wile for Brazil to host the Games. For the state of Rio de Janeiro it was complicated, becaus they’r bankrupt at the moment. But the country Brazil is far from being bankrupt: the Games reportedly cost 4 billion dollars, the GNP is of 1.5 TRILLION, that is, the Games cost 0.2% of wat Brazil produced. Of corse thare is poverty in Brazil, but the country has proportionally 7 times less foren det than Germany, and 30 times less than the UK, and it has twice as much gold and currency reservs than Germany, and almost 3 times as much as the USA. All this is hard to imagin wen peeple abroad just see images of favelas, of slums. This reflects less the reality of the country than the lak of ideas of the meedia, who concentrate on the stereotipes.
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