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#71785 - 05/30/02 01:49 PM der Geisterfahrer (oder aber Gespensterfahrer)
belligerentyouth Offline
old hand

Registered: 12/20/00
Posts: 1055
Loc: Berlin
Perhaps this word describing someone who drives into oncoming traffic should be considered for usage in English. Or would anyone like to offer a neological option?
Literally, it means 'ghost driver' strangely enough. A more obvious word for this type of driver is the synonym 'Falschfahrer' (wrong driver). The LEO online dictionary (leo.dict.org) offers this:
der Geisterfahrer - motorist driving against the traffic on motorways

Totally unacceptable, I'm sure you'll agree. With 'Zeitgeist' already adopted perhaps Geisterfahrer can/should be as well.


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#71786 - 05/30/02 02:20 PM Re: der Geisterfahrer (oder aber Gespensterfahrer)
of troy Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 10/17/00
Posts: 5400
Loc: rego park
i would like to live in a world where we don't need a word for motorist driving against the traffic on motorways

it will be a sad day, when geisterfhrer enters my everyday vocabualary.



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#71787 - 05/30/02 02:52 PM Re: der Geisterfahrer (oder aber Gespensterfahrer)
belligerentyouth Offline
old hand

Registered: 12/20/00
Posts: 1055
Loc: Berlin
You'd be surprised how common they are! Many quite old people often end up on the wrong side of things and cause horrific accidents, but recently a bloke on the large A8 Autobahn just got peed off waiting at roadworks and decided to cross over through a break in the barrier - he caused the death of three drivers before he was stopped.


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#71788 - 05/30/02 04:04 PM Re: der Geisterfahrer (oder aber Gespensterfahrer)
Angel Offline
addict

Registered: 12/28/01
Posts: 688
Oh my Gawwwwwd....I did this once! In an area of the city I had never encountered, and there was alot of traffic..I was so confused. I saw the street I was looking for and turned right. Only then did I realize that there were cars parked on both sides of the street and they were all facing me! Thank goodness there was no traffic on the street. I was able to pull into a driveway and turn around. But it sure scared the bejeebers out of me!


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#71789 - 05/30/02 04:13 PM .
Max Quordlepleen Offline
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Registered: 08/12/00
Posts: 3409

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#71790 - 05/30/02 04:19 PM Re: der Geisterfahrer (oder aber Gespensterfahrer)
belMarduk Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 09/28/00
Posts: 2888
A word describing the person while describing the outcome of his/her actions.

You'd have to tell us how it is pronounced though.


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#71791 - 05/30/02 05:22 PM Re: der Geisterfahrer (oder aber Gespensterfahrer)
belligerentyouth Offline
old hand

Registered: 12/20/00
Posts: 1055
Loc: Berlin
> Only then did I realize that there were cars parked on both sides of the street and they were all facing me

'Geisterfahrer' (more specifically) usually indicates driving the wrong way on a road where each direction of traffic is cut off from the other, e.g. freeways, motorways, causeways and what not.
I too have done what you mention, Angel - I realized pretty quickly what I'd done, but there was no one around and I was too lazy to back out of the very narrow street. Believe me, driving down a residential one-way street does not compare to cuising past cars sailing at upwards of 100 mp/h on the Autobahn; one is a little mistake, the other is dicing with death.


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#71792 - 05/30/02 05:40 PM Re: der Geisterfahrer (oder aber Gespensterfahrer)
belligerentyouth Offline
old hand

Registered: 12/20/00
Posts: 1055
Loc: Berlin
> You'd have to tell us how it is pronounced though.

The pronunciation BelM is pretty much as you'd expect it to be, as with almost all German. Geister is like Meister, known to all, and the -fahrer part (driver) is said like 'fa-rer'. All r's are pronounced a differently in German to English of course; a little at the back of the throat. A lot of English speakers have huge problems with this and go for a 'clean' r, if you know what I mean. Italians (of which there are many in sounthern Germany) tend to roll the r, which is wrong in Hochdeutsch too, but not unheard of among German speakers depending on their origin. Dutch has far more krass sounds, completely at the back of the thoat, as does the horrific Swiss German. Because Holland is so small there is far less variation in the accents, and thus it's harder to come off at all covincingly. In Germany my by no means fawless accent is often thought a North-Rhine twang. Distinctions like that wouldn't work in Holland. Apparently during the war they used to test whether people were really Dutch citizens just by asking them to pronounce the famous seaside town of 'Scheveningen'. If you've ever heard this pronounced *correctly you'll realise why it's so telling.


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#71793 - 05/30/02 06:09 PM .
Max Quordlepleen Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 08/12/00
Posts: 3409

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