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  • Betrifft



    ‘Want a cuppa or something?’ he asked his visitors. ‘Come into the kitchen. I apologise in advance for the mess.’

    As well he might! Santos thought wryly, as they followed Henderson into the cottage. The place was an absolute tip. The original cottage had been extended and, in addition, she guessed an internal wall had been knocked down. This resulted in a pretty large area and made it easy for Callum to move around without the trouble of negotiating low doorways; or bothering with doors at all. The kitchen part of the space was over to the left. What remained had been turned by Callum into his office. An old-fashioned square wooden table was covered with catalogues, paperwork and general debris. By the window Callum’s computer rested on a homemade desk-cum-table, chiefly remarkable for having odd legs. They were the same length, but varied in style. One was a barley twist leg from a much earlier piece of furniture, one was a length of post and the other two might have originated as supports for a piece of bedroom furniture.

    Fall mit 'tip' hier Müllhalde gemeint ist, scheint mir das, erst recht in Verbindung mit 'absolute', doch stark übertrieben. Wie sehen andere das? Oder entgeht mir was?

    VerfasserLumpur (794474) 22 Dez. 22, 12:43

    Es herrschte großes Durcheinander (Müllkippe fände ich auch etwas stark).

    #1Verfasser penguin (236245) 22 Dez. 22, 12:57

    Naja, absolute tip ist was im Deutschen ein Schweinestall darstelllt. Und der Besitzer hat sich ja schon für die Unordnung entschuldigt. Muss also nicht zu doll aussehen.

    #2VerfasserDixie (426973) 22 Dez. 22, 12:57

    Aber wo ist das Durcheinander, außer auf dem Schreibtisch?

    #3VerfasserLumpur (794474) 22 Dez. 22, 13:01

    Aber wo ist das Durcheinander, außer auf dem Schreibtisch?

    Just because only the desk is described in detail doesn't mean that the general statement "the place was an absolute tip" is limited to only the desk. .

    #4Verfasser hbberlin (420040) 22 Dez. 22, 13:13

    Hm. Das mag zutreffen.

    #5VerfasserLumpur (794474) 22 Dez. 22, 13:18

    Ich fand die Beschreibung, die nach "absolute tip" erfolgte, auch nicht dem Ausdruck entsprechend, deshalb kann ich Lumpurs Verwirrung verstehen. Es heißt, was es heißt, aber es passt eigentlich nicht zu dem beschriebenen Zimmer.

    #6Verfasser Gibson (418762) 22 Dez. 22, 14:02

    Vielleicht in Richtung es war alles nur Schrott...

    #7Verfasser buttermaker (826321) 22 Dez. 22, 14:21

    Aber "the place was an absolute tip" hat eigentlich eine klare Bedeutung; das hat wenig mit der Qualität der Möbel etc. zu tun.

    Allerdings fällt mir gerade ein, dass das Buch da ja noch nicht zu Ende ist. Vielleicht kommt in den folgenden Absätzen noch mehr Durcheinander?

    #8Verfasser Gibson (418762)  22 Dez. 22, 14:30

    Nicht wirklich, nur ein paar nachlässig gespülte Tassen auf dem Abtropfbrett.

    Na ja, ich schreib's ein wenig um ;)

    #9VerfasserLumpur (794474) 22 Dez. 22, 14:37

    I don’t have a big problem with it. One has to take the author’s word for it (upping Henderson’s “mess,” through the eyes of Santos): the place was an absolute tip. But that’s simply not what (s)he’s interested in describing. And what (s)he does describe—the changes made to the cottage, the location of the kitchen area, Callum’s office, etc.—is perfectly compatible with the place being a tip.

    #10VerfasserBion (1092007) 22 Dez. 22, 14:51

    I agree.

    Two other small points:

    Santos, through whose eyes we are seeing it, may be a person with high standards regarding tidiness, and therefore very critical.

    Also, "a tip" in this sense is an extremely common expression, and one doesn't necessarily visualise a rubbish tip.

    #11VerfasserHecuba - UK (250280)  22 Dez. 22, 16:57

    Ich sehe das anders. Es wird 3 (!) mal darauf hingewiesen, wie schrecklich es aussieht, und wenn das Zimmer dann beschrieben wird, erwarte ich eben auch eine Beschreibung des Durcheinanders. Oder gar keine Beschreibung. Aber so wird eine Erwartungshaltung aufgebaut, die nirgendwo aufgelöst wird. Für mich kein sonderlich guter Stil.

    #12Verfasser Gibson (418762) 22 Dez. 22, 17:08

    I guess that’s one way of seeing it. One might also see it as making Santos a more interesting character that she doesn’t just zero in on the reasons for her subjective rating of the place’s untidiness, but has other interests, its interior architecture, for example—if the book or story’s any good there’ll be reasons for the author's doing that.

    #13VerfasserBion (1092007) 22 Dez. 22, 19:01

    Im Text klingt ja an, dass Callum das cottage im Innern massiv um- und ausgebaut hat. Könnte sich absolute tip auch darauf beziehen? So im Sinne von "da passt ja nichts mehr zueinander"?

    #14Verfasser Kapustiner (1229425) 22 Dez. 22, 19:40

    I suppose it might play a role. I still think the character Santos is simply interested in other things than specifying in what ways it’s untidy. Maybe she wants to murder Henderson (or has to protect him) and so noting interior structural details for future use is her priority. Or whatever.

    #15VerfasserBion (1092007) 22 Dez. 22, 20:01

    Santos is simply interested in other things than specifying in what ways it’s untidy.

    Then why mention it three times? It still doesn't work for me.

    #16Verfasser Gibson (418762) 22 Dez. 22, 21:35

    There are three “mentions” (I take it by the second you mean “As well he might!”) I think because two characters are involved and one has two thoughts on the subject. That’s all. I read it as a perfectly normal interaction. Henderson says “My place is untidy.” Santos thinks “You can say that again. It’s an absolute tip [= exceedingly untidy].” A mystery writer, if it’s a mystery writer here, has no need to start detailing the ways in which it’s untidy.

    Maybe part of the problem is reading too much into the word “tip.” As Hecuba points out in #11 it’s common in this sense. It simply means “untidy.”


    “6. countable noun

    If you describe a place as a tip, you mean it is very untidy.

    [British, informal]

    The flat is an absolute tip.”


    #17VerfasserBion (1092007) 22 Dez. 22, 22:34

    I know the expression, but the author doesn't say "It was untidy". S/he says "It was an absolute tip*." And "mess" and "as well he might". That's a lot of attention, in my opinion, for something that is not picked up further in the paragraph. If there's no need to start detailing, then don't emphasise it so much in the first place, is my view.

    We clearly see this differently, but I don't think it has anything to do with a different understanding of the description. We just have different preferences in (for? about?) what we like to read.

    *In German, I might say "Es sah aus wie ein Schlachtfeld". No literal dead bodies there, either :-)

    #18Verfasser Gibson (418762) 22 Dez. 22, 22:53

    We just have different preferences about what we like to read.”

    Now that strikes me as a grand 10:53 p.m.-non-sequitur, yet, I feel, a truer word could hardly have been spoken. The OP doesn’t make me want to read the book in the least. But its style seems to me, for the kind of thing it is, etc., etc. Which brings me back to your second paragraph, its opening five words ...

    “about” works there, but I find it a bit untidy. “in” and “for” don’t really work. My preference is “as to.”

    #19VerfasserBion (1092007) 23 Dez. 22, 15:18

    #18 The text to which you attach so much significance:

    ‘Come into the kitchen. I apologise in advance for the mess.’ As well he might! Santos thought wryly, as they followed Henderson into the cottage. The place was an absolute tip.

    This isn't really much more than a single mention of the mess. I read it as meaning that he implied it was only a mess, she thought it was much worse, "an absolute tip". It fully achieves the goal of giving the impression that he's disorderly and there's no reason to describe the untidiness any further.

    #20Verfasser FernSchreiber (1341928)  23 Dez. 22, 15:29

    and there's no reason to describe the untidiness any further.

    ... in your opinion.

    I'm sorry, I still think it's badly written. It's the same as if somebody wrote: He had heard much about her beauty, and meeting her in person made him understand why. She was stunning. Her coat was long and tailored and her boots were the colour of dried blood. She smiled at him and shook his hand.

    Here, I'd expect a description of her beauty, not of her clothes. If somebody harps on about a room's mess, I expect a description of the mess, not of the furniture. It's not that important and nobody has to agree with me, but I find a bit strange that you seem so intent of convincing me that it is, in fact, good style. I've explained why I think it's not, and repeating that it is is not going to change my opinion about it. How could it?

    My preference is “as to.”

    Thank you. That sounds much better.

    #21Verfasser Gibson (418762) 23 Dez. 22, 17:25

    #25: I didn't mean to imply it was good style, just that it fulfilled a purpose. It's nothing like Raymond Chandler. I think the description of the desk does add to the sense of chaos and disorder in the cottage.

    #22Verfasser FernSchreiber (1341928) 23 Dez. 22, 17:53

    It's nothing like Raymond Chandler.

    That's funny - I read one of Chandler's books a few months ago, here on LEO, and it was the first time I'd read anything of his, ever. It's like buying a red car and suddenly there are red cars everywhere :-)

    #23Verfasser Gibson (418762) 23 Dez. 22, 18:15

    #19 10:53 p.m.-non-sequitur


    #24Verfasser Kapustiner (1229425) 23 Dez. 22, 19:08
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