Episode 14 – Stress Free German

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Welcome to Lesson #14 of Stress Free German. Let’s go right to our new image. Feminine, this time. Imagine a crowd of people standing around outside a pub. It’s nighttime, and a big lamp illuminates the pub. We can just see the street in the foreground. That’s a reminder that these are feminine nouns. And finally, on the left side, a hand is holding out a bottle of lemonade, as if to show us, This is what I’m drinking at the pub tonight.

Here, then, are the key elements: A bar or pub, a lamp, lemonade, a bottle…and the night.

Those first three are… Bar Kneipe Lampe

So if I show that picture to a native German speaker, and ask…Wo ist das?

Where is this? She’d say….

Das ist eine Bar, oder eine Kneipe.

What’s the difference between the two? I suppose the German version, Kneipe, feels more traditional…more like a German pub. Whereas Bar sounds more modern. But either word is fine.

Now, the lamp in the image is beautiful. It’s an elaborate, antique iron design. So our native speaker points to it and comments…

Was für eine schöne Lampe!

What a beautiful lamp!

I love that expression. Word for word, you’re saying: What for a beautiful lamp! Let’s try it again.

What a beautiful pub!

Was für eine schöne Kneipe!

The next two elements in our feminine image are the drink, and the container the drink is in. Listen?

Limonade, Flasche

(SFX: sipping, and Ahh!)

Die Limonade is sehr gut!

She said: The lemonade is really good.

Later at the pub, Lisa can’t find her bottle. She looks around…

Die Flasche.


Meine Flasche. Wo ist meine Flasche?

Ask her: Your lemonade?

Deine Limonade?

Yes. Where is my lemonade?

Ja. Wo ist meine Limonade?

We walk her home, and as Lisa goes up to her room, she says of course, Good night.

Gute Nacht.

From our lesson on greetings we knew already that Nacht was feminine, but it’s nice to see it as feminine in today’s image.

We’ll of course continue working with those as the lesson progresses. Next, though, let’s work with a new verb. Imagine that the next morning Lisa is grabbing a coffee. The guy ahead of her in line looks very familiar. She stares for a moment, about to ask, and then he tells her…

Ich bin Barkeeper. Ich arbeite in einer Bar.

He could have told her…
Ich bin Barkeeper. Ich arbeite in einer Kneipe.

So he’s saying, I’m a bartender. I work in a bar, or I work in a pub. In a different situation, he might have said: I work in the bar. Listen…

Ich arbeite in der Bar.

So, here’s my question: If Bar and Kneipe are feminine, then why is he using the word “der” D-E-R? Isn’t that masculine?

Uh-oh. Sorry to do this…


…we need that alarm again. Because here’s a key takeaway we learned back in Lesson 1.

The article Der does NOT automatically mean that the next word is a masculine noun.

This goes for any “er” ending. It does not automatically mean that the noun is masculine. And here we are seeing such a situation.

So, what’s going on? Well, like many other languages, German differentiates between going to a location, versus being in a location. Listen…

Wir gehen in eine Bar. e-i-n-e … eine

Wir arbeiten in einer Bar. e-i-n-e-r … einer

Here they are again. First she said: We are going to a bar.

Wir gehen in eine Bar.

And then: We work in a bar. Wir arbeiten in einer Bar.

The way to think of it is that when you go toward a location, you’ll eventually bump into it. And that (fist/palm) counts as doing something to it. I repeat: Going toward a place counts as doing something to it.

But if you work in a place, live in a place, shop in a place and so on….you are located there. And the surrounding words reflect this in a different way.

Please note there’s one common exception to this idea that “going somewhere counts as doing something to it.” We’ll discuss that in Lesson 20.


So, try to say: We work in the pub.

Wir arbeiten in der Kneipe.


Let’s try some other feminine locations. How about..

I am in the church.

Ich bin in der Kirche.

She is in the school.

Sie ist in der Schule.

As always, you’ve got to envision these. You have to see him in the church, or see her in the school. Connect these sounds to an image. And what about masculine locations? Or neuter ones? Let’s listen and find out.

You see a woman dressed in traditional German clothing. Off your look she informs you:

Ich arbeite in einem Restaurant. einem…e-i-n-e-m

Based on just that one neuter example, try to say: We work in a cafe.

Wir arbeiten in einem Café.

Imagine you call your friend. She asks if she can call you back, because right now …

Ich bin im Museum.

Did you say im? Like, the letters I-M? im. “In dem” das ist im.

Ah, so it’s a contraction. In dem becomes im. She’s saying it that way because the implication is there’s just one museum. She’s in the museum.

And what about masculine locations? Like…Maybe your friend is inside the train station. So when we call, he tells us…

Ich bin im Bahnhof. im

And again, based on just that one masculine example, try to say:

I am in the park.

Ich bin im Park.

This little topic we’re on…this difference between going to a place versus being located there…is another major chunk of the language. So if this is making sense to you, then you’re really doing well. And of course, as we progress, we’ll be making sure you get rock solid with all this. For now, I just want this idea to sink in: Am I going to the place, or am I located there?


I’m going to cheat. Instead of a tip, I’d like to use this spot to practice differentiating between moving towards something, and being located there. This will be all in English, and you just call out movement towards, or locational. Ready?

The book is on the table.

locational. good

I tossed my keys on the counter.

movement towards…and if that’s tricky for you, you need to see it in your head. See the keys flying through the air towards the table.

We live in an apartment.


I work out in a gym.


I’m going to the gym right now.

movement towards

The ball rolled under the car.

that is motion towards

But now…The ball is under the car.

now it’s located there


Let’s review today’s new vocab. Try to say…

It is a small pub.

Das ist eine kleine Kneipe.

or you could say bar…

Das ist eine kleine Bar.

You’re at a flea market in Vienna. On one table a lamp is for sale, so ask the woman who seems to be the seller…Is this your lamp?

Ist das Ihre Lampe?

Yes, this is my lamp.

Ja, das ist meine Lampe.

At a drink stand you ask for lemonade. How will the man tell you: I have no lemonade.

Ich habe keine Limonade.

On a hike with your brother, ask him…

Do you have my bottle?

Hast du meine Flasche?

How about this one: What a beautiful night!

Was für eine schöne Nacht!

Great job if you got that one. And now back to our main lesson point for today: We’re separating phrases into two categories: One where something is moving towards some place, versus one where something is located in one spot. To do that, I’d like to squeeze in one more new word today. For now just listen…

Wo ist mein Schlüssel?
Dein Schlüssel ist auf dem Tisch. auf…dem…Tisch

Wo ist meine Zeitung?

Diene Zeitung ist auf dem Regal. auf …dem… Regal.

We notice that the masculine table and the neuter shelf both had the same supporting word, dem.

Let’s try to say both of those. So ask…

Where is my key?

Wo ist mein Schlüssel?

Your key is on the table.

Dein Schlüssel ist auf dem Tisch.

Where is my newspaper?

Wo ist meine Zeitung?

Your newspaper is on the shelf.

Diene Zeitung ist auf dem Regal.

Again, in these locational phrases, both the masculine table and the neuter shelf had the same supporting word, dem.

Bearing that in mind, try to say: The dog is on the chair.

Der Hund ist auf dem Stuhl.

How about: The glass is on the refrigerator.

Das Glas ist auf dem Kühlschrank.

Let’s check out what happens to a feminine location.

Wo ist mein Handy?

Dein Handy ist auf der Bank. auf …der… Bank.

Let me prompt you on that same one. Ask: Where is my cellphone?

Wo ist mein Handy?

Your cellphone is on the bench.

Dein Handy ist auf der Bank.

Based on that one example, how might you say: The bottle is in the bag.

Die Flasche ist in der Tasche.

Maybe someone picks up your bottle and asks what you’re drinking. Tell them…

This is juice in the bottle.

Das ist Saft in der Flasche.

Excellent, guys!


One last round of review. Ready?

tell your friend: I’m giving you a big present.

Ich gebe dir ein großes Geschenk.

He is taking the train.

Er nimmt den Zug.

She is looking for a good pub.

Sie sucht eine gute Kneipe..

She works in a pub.

Sie arbeitet in einer Kneipe.

My brother works in the train station.

Mein Bruder arbeitet im Bahnhof.

My mother works in a school.

Meine Mutter arbeitet in einer Schule.

Tell your boss: I love your old lamp.

Ich liebe Ihre alte Lampe.

You are still seeing these all in your head, right? Just checking. Okay, the last few.

She’s going to the movies.

Sie geht ins Kino.

That one we know. But what about: She’s at the movies. (As in, She’s inside the theater, watching a film.)
Sie ist im Kino.

Let’s try that again. We’re going to a restaurant.

Wir gehen ins Restaurant.

We are in a restaurant.

Wir sind im Restaurant.

Phew. Fantastic. I know these are getting tougher and tougher. I hope the pace of the lessons is okay for you. Keep up the excellent work, and we’ll see you in the next lesson.

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7 thoughts on “Episode 14 – Stress Free German”

  1. This was definitely a tough one, but once again explained in such a way where I know I will get it eventually.

    My current issue is when I’m forming the answers to your prompting questions, I feel like I take too long to say them out loud, because my brain is on overdrive seeking out the words, changing the suffixes then slotting them into the right order. I seem to be quicker writing it down than forming it in my head.

    Having a natural non-stressful conversation will still be a long way off, but this is by far the best language-learning series I’ve listened to.

    1. Hi Scott,

      I appreciate the feedback. Please don’t let me rush you during the lessons. Use that PAUSE button and take your time. I assure you, over time you will become a little quicker, a little quicker…

      Meantime, keep up the great work!

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