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Brei/Topfbrei/Politikbrei

English translation: mess

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13:28 May 21, 2003
German to English translations [PRO]
Art/Literary - Idioms / Maxims / Sayings / Film dialogue
German term or phrase: Brei/Topfbrei/Politikbrei
A: In diesem Topf hab ich den Brei für meine Kinder gewärmt...
...für meinen Neffen und meine Enkel.

D: Jetzt kocht sie den Politikbrei.

I: Zumindest den Topfbrei.
Robert Schlarb
Local time: 14:40
English translation:mess
Explanation:
In the spirit of the following definition (from hyperdictionary.com):

mess
n 1: a state of confusion and disorderliness; "the house was a
mess"; "she smoothed the mussiness of the bed" [syn: {messiness},
{muss}, {mussiness}]
2: informal terms for a difficult situation; "he got into a
terrible fix"; "he made a muddle of his marriage" [syn: {fix},
{hole}, {jam}, {muddle}, {pickle}, {kettle of fish}]
3: soft semiliquid food; "a mess of porridge"

That would make the dialog something like:

A: I've cooked up a mess of porridge in this pot for my children... etc.

D: Now she's cooking up a political mess. (a messy political situation? hard to tell without more context if this means politics in the governmental sense, or if there might be another term that could make the whole thing more idiomatic).

I: ?? (i'm with Nancy here).

It would take some adaptation to fit the context, I'm sure, but "mess of porridge" struck me as a term with some wordplay potential.
Selected response from:

Kurt Beals
Local time: 05:40
Grading comment
This was NOT easy! As a matter of fact, I found out later that the pot is actually broken (it's a mess). So for his powers of premonition Kurt gets first prize.
Special thanks to all others who contributed intellectual capital.
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

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Summary of answers provided
4 +1porridge, oatmealNancy Arrowsmith
3 +1Interesting challenge!
Kim Metzger
3mess
Kurt Beals
3puréehirselina
2stew / hotpot / political hodgepodge
Michele Johnson
2brotheedee


  

Answers


4 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 2/5Answerer confidence 2/5
broth


Explanation:
as in "In this pot, I warmed the BROTH for my children... for my nephew and my grandchildren".

eedee
Local time: 14:40
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15 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5
purée


Explanation:
Brei could be translated as "purée". I found one use of "Politikbrei" meaning "mixture" in German (Der Hessenwahlkampf ist zu Ende und die Wahlbeteiligung hat wieder mal einen historischen Tiefststand erreicht, weil die meisten keinen Unterschied mehr sehen im Rot-Grün-Gelb-Schwarzen Politikbrei), whereas one American use of the same term seams to have another connotation, bur the term could still be used, I think.
http://www.andrewsullivan.com/print.php?artnum=20020317
"From beating a popular incumbent governor of Texas to winning a landslide second term as governor, he kept turning his opponents into political puree."
As for "Topfbrei", I don't know, really.



hirselina
Works in field
Native speaker of: Native in FrenchFrench, Native in DutchDutch
PRO pts in category: 4
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53 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +1
Interesting challenge!


Explanation:
Trying to match the German connotations of Brei is a challenge, but here's an attempt:

A: In this pot I heated up the stew for my children ...
...for my nephews and my grandchildren.

D: Now she's cooking political stew.

I: At least the stew that goes in a pot

Connotations of ‘stew’ – to be in a state of agitation, worry or resentment
To be in "a stew" is to be in trouble.

Um den heissen Brei herumreden –herumreden, nicht wagen - beat about the bush
Jmdm Brei um den Mund/ums Maul schmieren – umschmeichlen, zu Gefallen reden


--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 2003-05-21 15:57:28 (GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

SIMON\'S POLITICAL STEW STUNS VETERAN SPIN DOCTORS
August 03, 2002
File under: Culture and Politics
\"Even crisis communications guru Chris Lehane—who spun his way through the Monica Lewinsky mess—stopped in his tracks when he heard about the latest troubles of the Republican candidate for California governor, Bill Simon.\"

http://www.flightpath.com/nublog/archives/000548.html


Lack of elections doesn\'t spoil political stew

By Al Cross
C-J Political Writer
Video
Watch video from Fancy Farm.


FANCY FARM, Ky. -- Held in a year without an election in Kentucky, the 122nd Fancy Farm Picnic and its preliminary events still had no shortage of old and new political figures. And they and their audience served up rhetoric as spicy as the barbecue that\'s one of the main attractions.

http://www.courier-journal.com/localnews/2001/08/05/ke080501...



Kim Metzger
Mexico
Local time: 07:40
Works in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 136

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Michele Johnson: Elegant solution; I might suggest "she's cooking up..." i.e. inventing it, inciting it
1 hr
  -> Cooking up is much better - conniving, conspiring, etc.
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1 hr   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +1
porridge, oatmeal


Explanation:
is the first Brei, not stew (Eintopf)
2.political hodge-podge (was once a word for a Brei)
3. I'm not quite sure about the last.
Kim is right, it's a challenge!
Another favorite of mine is "Einmal um den Pudding herum" - anybody got a peppy translation for that?

Nancy Arrowsmith
Local time: 06:40
Works in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 4

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Nicole Tata: I was going to suggest porridge, political porridge ... More context needed for Topfbrei ;-)
17 hrs
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2 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5
mess


Explanation:
In the spirit of the following definition (from hyperdictionary.com):

mess
n 1: a state of confusion and disorderliness; "the house was a
mess"; "she smoothed the mussiness of the bed" [syn: {messiness},
{muss}, {mussiness}]
2: informal terms for a difficult situation; "he got into a
terrible fix"; "he made a muddle of his marriage" [syn: {fix},
{hole}, {jam}, {muddle}, {pickle}, {kettle of fish}]
3: soft semiliquid food; "a mess of porridge"

That would make the dialog something like:

A: I've cooked up a mess of porridge in this pot for my children... etc.

D: Now she's cooking up a political mess. (a messy political situation? hard to tell without more context if this means politics in the governmental sense, or if there might be another term that could make the whole thing more idiomatic).

I: ?? (i'm with Nancy here).

It would take some adaptation to fit the context, I'm sure, but "mess of porridge" struck me as a term with some wordplay potential.

Kurt Beals
Local time: 05:40
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 4
Grading comment
This was NOT easy! As a matter of fact, I found out later that the pot is actually broken (it's a mess). So for his powers of premonition Kurt gets first prize.
Special thanks to all others who contributed intellectual capital.
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

2 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 2/5Answerer confidence 2/5
stew / hotpot / political hodgepodge


Explanation:
I don't have a concise answer but here are some words with nice double entendres one could play with. I think you will have to compensate in English with alliteration, rhyming, etc.

hodgepodge
hotpot, hot pot, hot water
stew / brew (rhyming)
mush / mash (alliteration)
cooking, cooking up, brewing up
goulash
oatmeal / pulp / mush / pap
schmaltz




Michele Johnson
Germany
Local time: 14:40
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 4
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Changes made by editors
Oct 10, 2008 - Changes made by Steffen Walter:
Term askedBrei/Topfbrei/Politikbrei (in this context) » Brei/Topfbrei/Politikbrei
Field (specific)(none) » Idioms / Maxims / Sayings


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