Every country has its own absurdities. Germany, being inhabited by Germans, has many of them.
One of the more absurd things about us is how we number our building floors. See, we don’t count the ground floor. So the “first floor” to us is the first floor on top of the ground floor, i.e. the second floor.
Let’s say a building has two floors. Any rational person would look at that building and say: there are two floors – floor one and floor two. If you wave down from a window on the upper floor you are in the second floor. Right?
Well, to a German person that building has a ground floor and a first floor. And if you are on the top floor, then you are on the first floor.
It’s utterly absurd.
This was the room numbering in the hotel where I was staying:
I don’t know why we Germans are like that. There’s this “joke” that you will sometimes hear at German parties, I think it says a lot about us.
Well, it’s actually not a real joke, rather just an attempt at situational humor. So, let’s say it’s past midnight, we’re at a party, and you’re about to leave. You and I are supposed to meet up on the following day, so you say “see you tomorrow!” as you walk out the door.
And here’s where our German humor comes in: “No!” I will say, wearing a sly smile, “not tomorrow, my friend! I will see you TODAY!”
Because it’s already past midnight.
Anyway, I went to Groß-Gerau for my presentation today, and I hope my punchlines weren’t that bad:
It sounded alright from what I could tell.