Language has always been a means to distinguish the speaker from others. Foreign words, anglicisms, scientific jargon, legalese – the list is endless when describing the way in which we speak not only to communicate but also to clarify status.
In an era in which everyone wants to be young, hip, and cool, a raft of words and expressions have come into being that can actually only be used if we don’t listen closely to ourselves.
“Please send me an email about this” or, as the next escalation level, “Let’s sync on this”. In reality all this means is that your dialog partner has failed to pay the slightest attention to what you said and is asking you to tell them again in writing.
That doesn’t bother you? Or as Germans may say, you’re “fine damit”? Those of us who feel uncomfortable with such a mishmash of languages should simply change over to English, proving that we are “on the same page” as everyone else – a much better idea! Another illustration of the way that English and German are currently being combined is “asap”. This amusing abbreviation of “as soon as possible”, a joke that had already become unfunny in the 1990’s, has done more than satisfy the deep-seated German obsession with space-saving abbreviations. No, it has become a superlative that is also used as a comparative. Something that is more urgent than “asap” is “asaper” and if that is still not forceful enough, Germans can ask for something “asapest”.
So please – listen to yourself occasionally and correct the expressions you use asap. This would be a win-win situation that everyone is fine with. Of course, we can also sync on this – simply write us. Go for it. That would be awesome …