I have recently been interviewed for a job in a call center and although I didn’t get endorsed by the company judging by that initial interview I was glad that it made me realize how much I’ve grown to love the German language when I’m not even German in the first place.
Maybe it started when my mother rented ‘The Sound of Music’ (which was set in Austria) from the video store and later bought it on VCD (DVDs & Blu-Rays weren’t as popular then), it was then that I looked it up on the encyclopedia (yes, I didn’t get my internet education until I was about eleven or twelve) and discovered more and more about Germany, let’s not kid ourselves when we hear Germany in any form in the media one would initially think of Hitler and the Nazis and Word War II in general. As someone who’s interested in German history, culture or language I’m not as able to freely express these interest compared to someone who’s more interested in Japanese history, culture or language. Maybe the countless anime shows the Japanese have produced has something to do with it? Maybe that stereotype of Germans being cold reflects people’s image of them even after World War II and often than not, Germans don’t express as much pride in their country as other people in Europe or maybe the lack of insight of the country in modern society is a result in the lack of trade relations between Germany and the Philippines? I wonder. I do love the German language, it shares similarities with the Cebuano language or the Visayan languages at least in terms of the thick accent that makes one seem like an angry person if someone doesn’t understand the language.
My interest in Germany in general was through a musical considered to be a classic with Julie Andrews as the lead in it, yet it took a failed job interview to make me realize my love for the German language; hard and angry it may be, but soft and melodic it is as well. The perfect example I could think of is Bruno Ganz narrating Lied Vom Kindsein (Song of Childhood) by Peter Handke in the 1987 film ‘Wings of Desire’.
When the child was a child
It walked with its arms swinging,
wanted the brook to be a river,
the river to be a torrent,
and this puddle to be the sea.
I’m sad to say that German authors, poets and artists aren’t as celebrated in my part of the world, it would be nice to have a collection of their works.