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pfeifen im Walde

English translation: whistling in the dark

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GLOSSARY ENTRY (DERIVED FROM QUESTION BELOW)
German term or phrase:pfeifen im Walde
English translation:whistling in the dark
Entered by: William Stein
Options:
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23:36 Dec 22, 2003
German to English translations [PRO]
German term or phrase: pfeifen im Walde
In the heading of a newspaper article about those blowing the whistle on company irregularities (Enron/Worldcom etc.)and the protection offered by the Sarbanes -Oxley Act in the US.
Final para. ends... Er (ein Rechtsberater) empfahl den Deutschen sich politisch stark zu machen für eine Whistleblower-Charta, durch die Informanten mehr Mut schöpfen als durch Pfeifen im Walde.

Thanks for any help!
Helen Jordan
Local time: 03:31
whistling in the dark
Explanation:
This is what people do to give themselves courage when they're afraid.

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Note added at 6 mins (2003-12-22 23:42:59 GMT)
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Es könnte sein, dass diese Wendung anknüpft an ähnliche Formulierungen mit Zähnen und auch mit pfeifen gibt es ziemlich vieles an Sprichwörtern, kein Zahn, das heißt also ohne Biss, ***pfeifen im Walde, sich Mut machen***, keck sein, also wäre der Sinn dann etwa: hat zwar keinen Biss, tut aber mutig.

Selected response from:

William Stein
Costa Rica
Local time: 21:31
Grading comment
Thanks very much!! Seasons Greetings to all!
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

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Summary of answers provided
3 +8whistling in the dark
William Stein


  

Answers


2 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +8
whistling in the dark


Explanation:
This is what people do to give themselves courage when they're afraid.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 6 mins (2003-12-22 23:42:59 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

Es könnte sein, dass diese Wendung anknüpft an ähnliche Formulierungen mit Zähnen und auch mit pfeifen gibt es ziemlich vieles an Sprichwörtern, kein Zahn, das heißt also ohne Biss, ***pfeifen im Walde, sich Mut machen***, keck sein, also wäre der Sinn dann etwa: hat zwar keinen Biss, tut aber mutig.



William Stein
Costa Rica
Local time: 21:31
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 1734
Grading comment
Thanks very much!! Seasons Greetings to all!

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  gangels
0 min

agree  D D
5 mins

agree  Richard Benham: Sure beats whistling in the wind.
5 mins

agree  Marshall Waddell: ...or even spitting into it.
1 hr

agree  Laurel Porter: Genau! (and don't step on Superman's cape, either)
1 hr

agree  Maureen Holm, J.D., LL.M.: so I thought - a sort of cursing the darkness about it, too, maybe
4 hrs

agree  roneill
6 hrs

agree  Lori Dendy-Molz: also "whistling past the graveyard"
12 hrs
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