ARTE (Association Relative à la Télévision Européenne) is a…

ARTE (Association Relative à la Télévision Européenne) is a French-German coproduction of a higher end TV network that runs programs on society & culture, independent film, and the arts. It’s made up of 3 separate companies from Strasbourg at the French-German border, Paris, and Baden-Baden in Germany. As an international joint venture, it caters to audiences from both France and Germany in German and French. This means double-titling, opposite-language subtitling, dubbing, hosts who speak both languages, and 2 separate audio tracks through DVB-T, sat tv, and digital cable. Broadcasts begun in 1992. The Australian Special Broadcasting Service translates many ARTE programs into English for its own network and overseas broadcasts. French-language programs are also broadcast on Canada’s Ici ARTV channel. In Europe, ARTE can be seen in Germany, France, Belgium, Switzerland, Austria, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Liechtenstein, Monaco, and South Tyrol in Italy.

What’s the biggest difference between America and Germany for you?

America, as in USA or the whole continent? 😉 (You will hear this a lot from Europeans, so get ready, hah.) I’m German and have lived & worked in the US, so based on that I would say, these are some major differences: 

– Political correctness and general vagueness associated with the English language and resulting cultures. Do not expect Germans to constantly censor themselves in that way. Also, try to express yourself clearly in Germany by simply saying what you want, need, are happy about or bothered by. People around will do the same. If you don’t want an honest opinion, don’t ask for it.

– Attitude towards guns and war. We don’t do guns and, having had all this war on our soil, especially the last one, we’re generally not in favor of any more war and will prefer diplomacy and finding other solutions. We also have really low crime compared to the US. Also read this

– Differences in modesty and self-depreciation. It’s uncool in Germany to boast or be really loud in public or to display extreme wealth. Americans are famous for sort of “waltzing” into a place and taking up a lot of space. We see this in tourists a lot. There will be exceptions with Germans as well (we have a “jet set” class, too), but generally it’s just considered bad taste. Example: Loud cell phone conversations on public transportation or being really loud in restaurants. Germany is more of a group culture, while the US is an individual culture. This means that “Rücksicht” = consideration, respect, or regard for others is important to us. I have observed similar concepts in Asia, e.g. Japan. 

– Physical personal space. You will not hear “excuse me” from Germans or Europeans in general every 5 minutes when people just walk by. I found it “polite” but extreme in the USA how people excuse themselves when they pass you 3 meters away. 😀

– Fake smiles/friendliness. There is little to no fake smiling in Germany. Germans smile when there is something to smile about and are upbeat when they’re happy. It isn’t your “duty” to constantly sound like a cheerleader. The idea being that life comes with ups and downs, so why “fake it”? Americans will find Germans rude, especially in stores.

– Work culture. Again, more like East Asian countries than the USA. We’re perfectionists, and most people either go to university or do 3 year training for just about any occupation you can think of, incl, handy professions, service and office jobs. That means that people really learn their trade and it’s often for life that they stay in that same field. So in Germany, much less flexibility than in the US, but greater professionalism and also perfectionism at work. In the US you have to boast in a job interview, in Germany, you should display some modesty and let your credentials speak for themselves.

– Vacation/holidays and more time off in general. Germans generally get 4 weeks of vacation a year – it’s the law. They also take that vacation and the longer you stay in a job, the more vacation you get. This leads to greater company loyalty and less stressed employees. A job isn’t just a paycheck.

– Social benefits. Compared to the US, we have “free” healthcare financed by what we pay in taxes, free university, and very generous child benefits. We have “Kindergeld”, a concept where you receive an allowance for each child – read this. Maternity leave is generous and applies to males, too. Read this.

I could go on but this already is too long and these are some major differences I’ve noticed between the 2 countries. All in all, life seems far more stressful to me in the US. But that doesn’t mean Germany can’t be stressful. It’s more of a matter of perspective and having things/other countries to compare it with.

Hey :) Viele sagen, dass sich die Deutschen sehr viel beklagen. Ist das eigentlich richtig? Ehrlich gesagt stimme ich nicht zu,da ich schon einmal in Berlin gewesen bin. Ich komme aus Bulgarien und bin der Meinung, dass wir uns viel mehr beklagen.

Hello. 🙂 Das kommt wohl, wie in jedem Land, auf die Person an. 

Manchmal auch auf die Region, denn Deutschland ist nicht gleich Deutschland. Wir haben viele ganz verschiedene Regionen, die in der Vergangenheit wie Kleinstaaten waren. Dadurch hat sich auch die Sprache (Dialekte) und die regionale Kultur ganz unterschiedlich entwickelt. Grenzgebiete sind oft auch noch von unseren Nachbarn beeinflusst. Es ist also eigentlich so, dass es “die Deutschen” so gar nicht gibt. Das ist mehr so ein Patchwork-Ding, und so variiert auch der “deutsche” Charakter. Besucher können dann, je nach Region, ganz unterschiedlich Erfahrungen machen. 

In Bayern oder Berlin z.b. ist man sehr “outspoken”, sogar noch mehr, als woanders in Deutschland. Es gibt auch sehr positive und optimistisch-humorvolle Menschen in Deutschland, z.b. die Rheinländer, so wie Kölner. Auch um die deutschen Küsten herum gibt es eine ganz bestimmte Art von Humor. Die Berliner haben oft die “Berliner Schnauze”, sind aber wohl auch eher Optimisten und mehr lustig, während die Schwaben nach meiner Erfahrung oft sehr vorsichtig und abwägend sind, und somit oft auch sehr negativ. Aber wie gesagt, am Ende varriert das mit der Person – das alles sind nur Trends. 

 Allgemein kann man wohl sagen, dass die Deutschen im Vergleich zu anderen Völkern kein Blatt vor den Mund nehmen. Das heisst, wir sind zum Beispiel im Vergleich zu Briten oder Amerikanern nicht politisch korrekt, sondern einfach ehrlich, und ich glaube, viele Leute aus anderen Ländern finden das dann “rude” und sagen, die jammern. Schönen Gruss nach Bulgarien. Dein Deutsch ist super.

Ciao, what would be a typical German breakfast ?

Ciao, a typical German breakfast features fresh bread rolls and bread or toast, butter/margarine, assorted cheeses (like cream cheese, cottage cheese, brie, camembert, quark), assorted sausage/cold cuts (called Aufschnitt), honey and marmelade/jam or Nutella, coffee, milk, juice or tea, vegetables (like radishes, cucumber, tomato), and fruit (like berries, kiwis, bananas, oranges). Also popular are soft-boiled eggs. Some people like yogurt or cornflakes or müsli. 

It will look something like this: 


For many more examples of regular German breakfasts, see the breakfast tag. I should add that, seeing that breakfasts in Germany are quite elaborate with many choices, we’re often not used to really simple breakfasts when traveling. So now you know why Germans MIGHT complain at the sight of just bread and jam for breakfast or some random donut and coffee. 😉 We’re really spoiled when it comes to breakfast.

What’s eurovision?

A horrible singing contest, where 40+ countries compete against each other, with crooner type of songs. But many people watch because it’s a “cult” thing and we like to see how many points each country gives to any other country. It often shows trends and reflects a country’s politics and Zeitgeist so sometimes, things can be deducted from who supports whom. You probably have to be European to really appreciate the ritual. Read about it here. 🙂

What are you favourite accents and dialects and your least favourite (Just for fun, not to offend anyone of course), I like schwäbisch even though everyone seems to think it is so ugly XD

Good question. I’m Northern and, personally, I think many of the Northern dialects are really gemütlich, like North Frisian, East Frisian, which are similar to Dutch/Danish, also English – region and example. I also like the dialects around Bremen and Hamburg, and I definitely like Kölsch from Cologne. 😀 Your favorite Schwäbisch/Swabian sounds funny to me and the tone is kind of whiny, but it’s also sometimes cute with things like “HA NOI! and the -le endings, examples here. 🙂 My least favorite would be the rather rude-sounding Berlinerisch from around Berlin, and, like most Germans, I think, Sächsisch from the East German state of Sachsen makes my ears bleed and probably is the most horrible of all German dialects (sorry, Sachsen!) – example. 😀 Examples of assorted Germanic languages here.

How about all of you? Leave a message in the inbox. 🙂

Hackfleisch-Lauch-Suppe #chefkoch300 g Hackfleisch vom Rind oder…

Hackfleisch-Lauch-Suppe #chefkoch

300 g Hackfleisch vom Rind oder halb & halb (ground beef or half and had beef & pork) – 1 große Zwiebel (large onion) – 2 EL Speckwürfel (tablespoons bacon cubes) – Öl, zum Braten (oil, for frying) – 1 grosse Stange Lauch (large leek) – 2 große Kartoffeln (large potatoes) – 200 g Schmelzkäse oder Sahne (cheese spread/processed cheese or heavy cream) – 2 EL saure Sahne (tablespoons sour cream) – 600 ml Gemüsebrühe (vegetable broth) – Salz und Pfeffer (salt & pepper) – Muskat (nutmeg)

Zwiebel abziehen und in Würfel schneiden (peel onion and cut into cubes). Zusammen mit dem Speck in einem großen Topf in Öl angehen lassen (place onions in a pot with bacon and oil). Das Hackfleisch zufügen und Farbe nehmen lassen (add ground meat and let it brown a bit). Ab und zu umrühren damit es sich schön verteilt und gleichmäßig brät (stir occasionally so it fries evenly). In der Zwischenzeit den Lauch putzen, waschen, halbieren und in feine Streifen schneiden (in the meantime, clean the leek, wash, cut in half and cut in strips). Falls man beim Schneiden noch Sand findet, noch einmal waschen (wash again if you notice any more dirt while cutting). Den Lauch zum angebratenen Hackfleisch geben, etwas angehen lassen und mit Gemüsebrühe ablöschen (add leeks to the meat, stir to combine and add vegetable broth). Die Kartoffeln waschen, schälen, in kleine Würfel schneiden und zufügen (wash potatoes, peel, cube and add to the pot). Die Suppe etwa 20 Min köcheln lassen (let cook for about 20 mins). Zum Schluss den Schmelzkäse, alternativ Sahne, sowie die saure Sahne zufügen und noch einmal kurz aufkochen lassen (at the end, add the cheese or cream and the sour cream and bring to a quick short boil). Mit Salz, Pfeffer und Muskat abschmecken (adjust to taste with salt, pepper and nutmeg). Zum Anrichten die Suppe in tiefe Teller oder eine Suppenschüssel geben und heiß servieren! (fill into bowls and serve hot”. Guten Appetit. 🙂