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einen Stift in die Hand nehmen

English translation: pick up a pencil

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GLOSSARY ENTRY (DERIVED FROM QUESTION BELOW)
German term or phrase:einen Stift in die Hand nehmen
English translation:pick up a pencil
Entered by: Klaus Urban
Options:
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18:56 Sep 18, 2007
German to English translations [PRO]
Bus/Financial - Law: Contract(s) / start doing something
German term or phrase: einen Stift in die Hand nehmen
Es geht darum, was das Zustandekommen eines unbefristeten Arbeitsvertrags auslöst. Nach dem Teilzeit-und Befristungsgesetz ist es unbedingt erforderlich, dass ein befristeter Vertrag vor Arbeitsaufnahme geschlossen wird. Ansonsten wird automatisch mit Arbeitsaufnahme ein unbefristeter Vertrag geschlossen. Eine Arbeitsaufnahme liegt schon vor, wenn der Arbeitnehmer ***einen Stift in die Hand nimmt***.
Wer kann helfen?
Klaus Urban
Local time: 09:12
when the employee so much as picks up a pencil
Explanation:
It's not really a legal expression (use of "schon"), so why not simply translate what it says?
Selected response from:

Janis Auzins
Local time: 10:12
Grading comment
Thank you!
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

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Summary of answers provided
3 +5when the employee so much as picks up a pencilJanis Auzins
3 +2shows up for the first day of work
Paul Cohen
4...the moment the person moves his or her little finger ...
Vito Smolej
3picks up a hammer
jccantrell


Discussion entries: 2





  

Answers


21 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5
picks up a hammer


Explanation:
I would also go along with showing up for work, but I think the author wanted to give it more ooomph, so this might fit your context.

I think 'Stift' here is much more of a stud or a pin than a pen, but a hammer would fit, imo.

jccantrell
United States
Local time: 00:12
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 87
Notes to answerer
Asker: Thank you!


Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
neutral  Stephen Sadie: I wouldn't take a hammer with me on my first day of work!
3 mins
  -> Depends on the type of work you do and whether the employer provides the tools.

neutral  Susanne Rindlisbacher: Antwort für jccantrell: In beinahe allen Berufen, muss man irgendwann einen Stift (Bleistift oder Kuli) zur Hand nehmen, ein Hammer ist vergleichsweise selten gefragt. Hier geht es mMn nicht darum, etwas zu unterzeichnen.
51 mins
  -> but the context seems to say that the worker gets a contract 'automatisch' when starting work and so this eliminate having to SIGN something.
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8 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +2
shows up for the first day of work


Explanation:
...as soon as an employee shows up for the first day of work.

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Note added at 11 mins (2007-09-18 19:08:11 GMT)
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Or rather: "...when an employee shows up for the first day of work."

The "einen Stift in der Hand nehmen" is of course meant in a figurative sense. I'd spell it out in English. When you show up for the first day of work, you've essentially started working for your new employer.



--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 41 mins (2007-09-18 19:37:56 GMT)
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When you show up for your first day of work, the clock starts ticking, so to speak. As soon as you "punch the clock," a work/emplyoment situation has been established.

Paul Cohen
Greenland
Local time: 05:12
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 32
Notes to answerer
Asker: Thank you, Paul!


Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Stephen Sadie: I think you are right Paul// or even "starts his new job"
11 mins
  -> Yes, starts his/her new job is what it's about. The question is WHEN does this new job begin? When the employee picks up the proverbial pencil/hammer? Maybe...

neutral  Bernhard Sulzer: I think it's meant to be cynical as in : as soon as he/she just touches that pen it's too late. What do you think? ;-)
1 hr
  -> Cynical is one way to describe it, I suppose. The pen is just an image. As soon as you punch the clock and are "on the job" there's no going back. You're an employee - whether you pick up a pencil or a hammer (or just twiddle your thumbs).

agree  Ingeborg Gowans: I'd go with "punch the clock" m,aybe
4 hrs
  -> Maybe punch the clock ... and then pick up a pencil? ;-)
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1 hr   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +5
when the employee so much as picks up a pencil


Explanation:
It's not really a legal expression (use of "schon"), so why not simply translate what it says?

Janis Auzins
Local time: 10:12
Native speaker of: Native in LatvianLatvian
PRO pts in category: 4
Grading comment
Thank you!
Notes to answerer
Asker: Thank you, Janis!


Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Susanne Rindlisbacher
12 mins

agree  Nicole Schnell
18 mins

agree  Stephen Sadie: this is also nice
24 mins

agree  Bernhard Sulzer: or a "pen"
31 mins

agree  Julia Lipeles
54 mins
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1 hr   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
...the moment the person moves his or her little finger ...


Explanation:
... just stepping up to the plate to get my three strikes (g)....

Vito Smolej
Germany
Local time: 09:12
Native speaker of: Native in SlovenianSlovenian
PRO pts in category: 4
Notes to answerer
Asker: Thank you, Vito!

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