Saturday, July 24, 2010

I give it two dots

I forgot the keycode for a u with an umlaut* so I Googled. Found the answer, and also found a piece of very short fiction from Nora Ephron: "The Girl Who Fixed the Umlaut." It's good. Don't read it first, but the last sentence is FTW.

* On a Windows machine: Alt-129 for lowercase: ü, Alt-154 for uppercase: Ü. Thanks for the reminder, Pinyin Joe! And yeah, I confess: I was typing über alles again. In my own defense, at least this time it wasn't for purposes of fanboying the Dead Kennedys.


TC said...

FYI in German the alternate spelling for a vowel with an umlaut is to put an "e" behind the vowel. Thus Deutschland ueber Alles is correct spelling and pronounced the same way as the umlauted vowel.

TC said...

BTW "Deutschland ueber Alles" is often misunderstood. It really means roughly "Germany we love you most of all" not that Germany is better than everyone else or is above every other country. Germany is above everything else in our hearts. As with "America the Beautiful"

Brendan said...

Thanks for the part about the ue option to the ü. I did not know that.

I think I have a rough sense of über alles, though. Here is the context in which I most recently used it, if you would like to judge.

TC said...

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe actually spelled his last name with an umlaut rather than an 'e". Unfortunately that has often led English speakers to pronounce it " go-eeth-tha.

I wasn't criticizing your use of the phrase, just a sidebar that many people misinterpret the meaning to imply that Germans think they are better than any other country or should rule others.

Brendan said...

Didn't think you were criticizing, but thanks for saying so.