Viennese birds

4 Mar

Caption: Viennese birds

Bird on the left (in Viennese dialect): Worms used to taste better.

Bird on the right (also in Viennese dialect): Everything’s going to hell. (Literally, “Everything’s going down the creek.”)

(For those who don’t know, the Viennese have the reputation of taking delight in complaining a lot.)

Viennese Coffee Houses

27 Feb

“A Viennese coffee house is where time and space are consumed but only the coffee appears on the bill.”

Hope they open again soon! (But safely.)

Switching from work-from-home back to normal

12 Feb

“And what makes you think that going from working from home back to normal could be a problem for me?” πŸ˜‰

A joke for Vienna insiders

4 Jan

(Floridsdorf is the 21st district and lies “transdanubia”.)

A particularly Austrian solution

20 Dec

Seems a particularly Austrian solution to me. It is against the law for descendants of aristocratic families to use their titles and has been since 1918. The maximum penalty? 14 cents. πŸ™‚

The Main Problem for Viennese

14 Nov

From Helmut Qualtinger, author, cabaret artist and more.

“The problem for every Viennese: One can’t bear it in Vienna anymore–nor anywhere else.”

The Second of Three Days of National Mourning

4 Nov

Curfew

31 Oct

Well, I didn’t see that coming, even though our numbers are terrible. As of Tuesday we will have the first curfew of Austria’s Second Republic. True to Austrian form it is early. We will not be allowed on the streets between 8 p.m. and 6 a.m.

There isn’t much front page news that interrupts my habit of starting at the back of the paper and working my way forward (the last I remember was the announcement of Karlheinz BΓΆhm’s death), but this was one of the items that did.

Today’s headline, by the way, says that the government is tightening the screws. I’ll leave you to consider which ones.

The gloves are off – but the masks are on (we hope)

18 Oct

For months the public transportation authority in Vienna has been making an announcement in its vehicles along the lines of “Dear passengers, please cover your nose and mouth when in underground stations and using public transport.” (An aside: I imagined the pleasure of the translator that they were proficient enough to know that “nose and mouth” sounds more natural in English even though in German it is “Mund-Nasen-Schutz” or “mouth-nose protection / covering”.)

A day or two ago I realized that this announcement has been shortened and is now delivered in a more peremptory tone compared to the rather mellifluous earlier version. The current version: “Dear passengers, please cover your mouth and nose.”

What’s next? No “please”?

A very Viennese cartoon

10 Oct
From Wienzig

The man in the cartoon is on his way to a new course at the Volkshochschule (VHS). There you have the first point. Almost every district in Vienna has its own VHS, a school that offers all kinds of courses for a very reasonable fee so that “das Volk” (the people) can go on learning and developing themselves. The course is “Raunzen wie ein Wiener” or poorly translated “Complaining like a Viennese”. “Raunzen” is one of those words that is almost intranslatable. It is a particular kind of ongoing complaining about little things and the Viennese like to engage in it. The final straw for me was one of the comments on Facebook. One Wienzig follower had written “Des kannst net lernen”–Viennese dialect for “That’s not something you can learn.” πŸ™‚