I don’t usually read Slate comments…

…but when I do, I love it when they inadvertently prove me right about something. Behold, from the incredibly humorlose Sara (with commentary):

Sorry Rebecca, but I think you missed the point entirely.
[“Supergeil” has a point?!?!?}

German television? Superior to American? Oh, because we get to watch porn stars on “mieten, kaufen, wohnen”!
[I realize that German humor consists of reciting several tragic facts and then smirking, but when I referred to German TV as “superior” I was being what we call “cheeky.” There are certain things on German TV that we don’t have on network television–such as nudity and swearing and a blasé attitude toward sex–that I find superior on German TV.]

That must be why we have to pay for VPN networks just to get Netflix over here so we can actually watch the likes of Breaking Bad, House of Cards, etc. etc.
[House of Cards isn’t even on TV, you dipshit. And all that other stuff is on cable. I’m talking network]

The very idea that German TV is somehow superior to US for any reason is simply ridiculous. Your statement is also insulting to the very few quality shows on the air here, no, not “mieten, kaufen, wohnen”!!!, and no, they do not generally feature porn stars.

Edeka. Is the most non-sexy place anyone could possibly imagine in Germany. (Any takers on this?). What exactly are you thinking of when you claim it is sexy and how does this supposed sexiness  make it superior to US grocery stores? Are you actually saying that the titty magazines are improving your shopping experience?
[I do not believe that I ever referred to EDEKA as sexy, and have actually never set foot in one. I prefer Spar.]

If you go to my Edeka grocery store, right across the street, you will lots of old German ladies, mean check-out people and grumpy Germans.
[Grumpy Germans! Do you know any?!?!?!?!?]

That’s it. The video is cool, whatever, it’s an ironic spoof that has gone viral to Edeka’s advantage. Well done.

Not like your commentary. Just because you spent a couple of months in Germany doesn’t mean you have anything meaningful to contribute. You don’t get it. Leave it to the Germans.
[Ah yes, I’ve only spent several years in toto in Germany and Austria and I only have a motherfucking doctorate in German and know more about your literary tradition and cultural history than you do, but WHAT DO I KNOW? Indeed, I will leave all humorous cross-cultural commentary about Germany to the Germans, whose world-famous ability not to take themselves seriously is on spectacular display here.]

Grüsse aus Berlin.
[Danke! Let me guess: you moved there from some Kaffgau seven months ago, and are now a hardened Berlinerin, impressed by nothing but the dropped crotch of your trousers.]

22 thoughts on “I don’t usually read Slate comments…

      • I know several German Saras as well. I wasn’t super thrilled with that comment. I don’t want to make fun of Sara’s name. I want to make fun of the fact that she has no sense of humor.


      • sorry. it’s late in this timezone and I shouldn’t write comments before I got some sleep. i thought I reply on sylvies comment. I had a specific intention but I can’t remember. I got your point and I find you’re right. People like this person Sarah are anoying in their lack of humor and their aggressive behaviour. And now. Good night from Germany. ^^


    • Despite the fact, that Sara is clearly without humor and thus prooving the prejudices about us germans, the reasoning in her TV comparison is quite obvious:

      Basically* in Germany there is only network TV. The idea of distinction between Network, Cable and stuff like Netflix is not natural for germans. There is TV, and everything should be on that TV. TV is free.

      * there is some kind of Pay TV, but for most people the only acceptable reason to pay money, is to watch football**.

      ** soccer for some people 😉


      • In Austria there is a TV tax and so all the channels are subsidized that way. Is the same true in Germany? (and I have many many German friends who are indeed quite funny; this one just happens to be humorlos).


    • Amazingly enough, Kaffgau was also a joke. Kaff isn’t enough because that is an actual word. Gau also isn’t enough because it’s an actual suffix to real things (Pongau or whatever). Kaffgau is deliberately ridiculous, and meant to be funny in a cross-cultural way, as were my comments about Supergeil in general. Vielen Dank noch einmal for inadvertently proving me 100% correct about Germans’ propensity for a somewhat nontraditional sense of humor.


      • Aawww, really?! 😀 C’mmon Becci.. where’s your sense of humor?
        Putting this girl out there, calling her a dipshit and all, just for having a stick up her arse and too much time and then delete a comment because of a subtle criticism?


      • I deleted it because you called me “Becky,” actually. But seriously. Kaffgau was like saying “some piece of shit, middle-of-nowhere Aryan Nations boondock hicksville,” instead of “the middle of nowhere.” Do you see the difference? That is an intentional difference. My writing style involves taking what is “enough” and then pushing it about four times past that boundary. If you don’t like the style, that’s fine, but to say that my wordplay is somehow unacceptable because I’m not a native speaker is to devalue the attempt at cross-cultural humor. Also I’m Jewish so I get to make fun of Nazis and the Aryan Brotherhood as much as I want to.


      • Oh. Sorry. I didn’t refresh the page, before posting the second reply, so I didn’t recognize that you had already answered. Actually I dind’t really expect you to 😀
        Honestly – I don’t understand why you are pulling the ‘I’m Jewish’-card here. 😀 What’s it got do with anything in this context? Necessity and rightfulness of making fun of Nazis? No arguing there – with some things, humor is the only way. But how was this relevant in our context again? 😀
        As far as the original topic is concerned: I was pretty sure, that you just wanted to emphasise ‘Kaff’ by adding the (as you put it) ‘actual suffix to real things’ ‘-gau’ and that you weren’t aware of the possible connotation. Actually I still am. And that’s what I ment with ‘subtle criticism’.
        Therefore I wasn’t trying to say, that your wordplay was unacceptable, but – given the context – it’s implications were a little questionable. But then again, maybe you really just wanted to be insulting, who knows ^^

        Nice writing nonetheless 🙂


      • Well, I’ll put it this way. Like I said, if I’d written it in English, I would have said “backwoods, hicked-out, Aryan-Nations style middle-of-nowheresville.” So I wanted the slight White Power connotation in there, just to hammer home my joking caricature that this ‘Sara,’ no so worldly and disapproving of my delight in Friedrich Liechtenstein, is far from urbane. The only reason I said I was Jewish is that when I have joked about Austrian friends being “Aryan” before they have said, “Oof, that’s pretty edgy, but you’re Jewish so I’ll allow it.”


  1. Hi Rebecca,
    As a German, being glad to not life in Berlin, I have to add some thoughts on your numerous self-referring posts on supergeil….
    first and foremost: German tp is soft – who can’t stand it is a douche!
    2.) Kaffgau ist great!
    3.) Supermarkets are not sexy – and the idea of Edeka is IMO to make a change towards being at least more cool than the others. And they are very good at it.
    Do you know their Potheads-Cinema-Spot? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5bGGYqiz3fk
    4.) The only thing I’d deny is the idea of the “German Gangnam Style” – it’s more the idea of translating self-referring Berlin-content to a broader audience.
    Thank you for some good reads, and a good time.
    PS: R you still in Germany. Would like to meet for a Beer or too to learn more and to discuss with an American who (thinks she) knows Germans.


    • I’ll be in Germany this summer, but I don’t drink! But I am looking for Germans to interview about themselves and Germany, so prepare to hear from me in a few months.
      Oh, I know Germans. I know AT LEAST TEN Germans ;). (I’m not saying I “know” Germans any better than I “know” Americans, but I am definitely not the moron that “Sara” thinks I am.)


  2. I loved the original comment you wrote on the EDEKA spot as well as your reaction to that girl. Thank God I’m pretty sure you know not all Germans are as uptight as her 😀


  3. Thank you for your thoughts on Saras comment.
    What I – as a German myself – find most irritating on her posting is
    “Just because you spent a couple of months in Germany doesn’t mean you have anything meaningful to contribute.”
    Sorry, but this is arrogance – even if it was true that you only lived a very short time in a country. The other way round it would be correct: “Just because you spent ONLY a couple of months in Germany doesn’t mean you have NOTHING meaningful to contribute.”

    In every country there’s folk like her who is so supergeil on making fools of themselves!! Sara did it German (Gangnam) Style.
    By the way – I love the word “dipshit”.


    • Ganz vielen Dank Robert, das ist sehr nett von Ihnen. I really appreciate it–as much as I appreciate your downright language-philosophy-tastic disambiguation of that comment. I love it!!!


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