Off the record (I)

The whole picture is a “trace” of the past – as everybody in the know will immediately see. So here is my entry for the photo challenge at Paula’s Lost in Translation.


For the record: The makers of the Toy Photographers blog kindly invited me to contribute! I feel absolutely honoured. However, I do not link to my post directly because I think the whole blog is really worth a visit. And please do not miss the discussions in the comments sections – they are just as interesting!

Cum grano salis

Cum grano salis, lit. taken with a grain/pinch of salt, fig. not to be taken literally, to be understood using your wit.

Since this whole series makes use of a very specific type of contrast (you know what I mean, right?), I thought I might as well enter it into Paleica’s Magic Motto Challenge: Contrasts. Please check out her site! You’ll find some beautiful contribtions there.

Waiting For the Penny to Drop

When Paula announced Thursday’s Special was Waiting, I immediately thought, “waiting for the penny to drop.” I could not get rid of the phrase until this morning when the penny finally did drop – with a little help from my wife. She also helped me out with an Irish penny, rendering this picture a bit more ironic, though it is for you to decide if is to be seen politically.

In line with my other pictures from this series, I would just like to add that we have the same phrase in German: “Warten, dass der Groschen fällt,” a Groschen being 10 Pfennig, which was our small change before Pfennige and pennies became cents.

In Over Their Heads


To be in over one’s head, lit. bis über den Kopf drinstecken, equiv. etwas wächst jemandem über den Kopf, fig. (English phrase) to be involved in a difficult situation that you cannot get out of

…and while I look at this picture, a German classic comes to mind: Der Zauberlehrling (The Sorcerer’s Apprentice) by Johann Wolfgang Goethe. It is about this magical broom not quite obeying the apprentice… Follow this link for this poem and its English translation.

Against All Odds


This was the original idea:

Jemandem den Boden unter den Füßen wegziehen, lit. to pull the ground from under sb’s feet, equiv. to pull the rug from under sb’s feet, fig. (German phrase) to threaten someone’s existence

…but it also looks like this guy is standing up on the cobblestone against all odds, so this also seems to be an appropriate contribution for the Weekly Photo Challenge.

Auf seinem eigenen Stern


Er lebt auf seinem eigenen Stern means “he’s living on his own planet” – almost literally, since Stern is a star. The figurative meaning is the same in German and English.

So much for translating… This is my contribution for Thursday’s Special at Lost in Translation where you can pick a word from this list: radiant | alimentary | frontal | arboreal | remote. I picked the first one, and maybe the last.

And there is also an alternative take.