Germans Explain Things to Me

A brief record of some things German strangers have said to me recently:

  1. Dirty diapers belong in the yellow garbage can. My kid hasn’t used diapers for five years but ok.
  2. That I have an accent when I speak.
  3. That I need to get rid of this accent for the sake of my daughter.
  4. Why I should be an English teacher. I teach at a university.
  5. Vacations: good for your health, must be 3 weeks long at least.
  6. Vegetarians aren’t healthy.
  7. That bread I’ve been eating isn’t healthy because it doesn’t contain 50% seeds and 50% rye.
  8. What the geography of Madison, Wisconsin (where I grew up) is like.
  9. Beyonce uses too many black people in her videos making it hard to relate to her.
  10. My bike is parked incorrectly.
  11. My kid’s bicycle is too big.
  12. I cannot bike on the sidewalk even on a street without a bike path.
  13. That bilingualism is a fantasy and children who are raised in two languages will always choose the language of their environment as their mother tongue, no matter what language they speak more frequently or which language they speak with their mother and so I should stop speaking English at home with my kid.
  14. I will not be taken seriously unless I speak in commands.
  15. I should learn German for the sake of my kid. I translate government documents from German into English.
  16. Why it is detrimental for a child to have a working mother.
  17. Why it would be better for my kid to be raised in a home with both a mother and father.
  18. That I am dreaming if I think I can have a family and a career.
  19. That Germany isn’t the only nation in which people wear slippers.
  20. That I will get ill if the window is cracked even though it is a million degrees inside the building.
  21. German people do know how to queue and I am just imagining they don’t whenever I feel I’m being overrun by people at the bread counter.
  22. If I take zinc, my allergies will disappear.
  23. That the feeling I have as a foreigner never fitting in is inaccurate.
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