The “oder”

When you hear “oder” you might think of the famous German river (see the Wikipedia’s photo above).

But, if you live in Switzerland, “oder” is definitely the most common refrain of every Swiss German spoken sentence! It has a kind of (useless) meaning like the English rhetorical questions “isn’t”, “don’t you”, etc. at the end of a sentence.

Some days ago a colleague (I calculated them!) used multiple infamous “oder”s with an average of one every 30 seconds during a two hours’ meeting! Unbelievable! The small “o” word really became like an unbearable noise to my ears!

By the way… the most international Swiss, to stay consistent to their proud “oder”, even when speaking a foreign language, have absolutely no problem to declaim in English sentences like:

It is quite hot today, or? (Aka: It is quite hot today, isn’t it?)

It was very nice, or? (Aka: It was very nice, wasn’t it?)

Next time it will be better to attend the meeting with ear protection, so that the colleagues will understand my sensitivity to the “oder” word, … OR?

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