6

I heard many times "Das ist blöd" in various contexts in Switzerland. For example:

  • Parent to child about some minor thing.

  • Waiter in restaurant to parents about putting the pushchair at some location inconvenient to him.

  • Postman about not emptying the mailbox often enough.

For these, the literal translation of "stupid" would be too harsh, and I have the hunch that in Swiss German this is a lighter expression?

12

Blöd can indeed mean stupid but also inappropriate, unfortunate, unfavourable or simply bad.

Das ist blöd gelaufen.

That went badly.

Fill in silly whenever you spot blöd. It's most accurate.

This isn't limited to Swiss German but a pretty general German usage of blöd.

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  • There is also the Swiss German expression "blöd tue" which means to misbehave. – wra Jun 27 '17 at 20:55
  • Isn't that Alemannisch in general? – Janka Jun 27 '17 at 22:40
  • Probably (but I don't know). "Misbehave" is a bit stronger than "being silly" or "fool around". Apart from that, "blöd" means the same as in – wra Jun 28 '17 at 20:13
  • ... German generally. My Berndeutsch dictionary also mentions "insipid" and "threadbare" but I have never heard "blöd" used in that sense myself. – wra Jun 28 '17 at 20:25
5

Using the word "blöd" in Swiss German depends on the context. It usually expresses people's view of something being unfortunate or not convenient to them

Parent to child about some minor thing.

This is a very broad explanation of the situation. "Das ist/isch blöd" (in Swiss German, people often say "isch" instead of the German "ist") could mean that the parent wants to tell the child that something should not be done or that there is something (brought up by the kid) the parent does not like.

Waiter in restaurant to parents about putting the pushchair at some location inconvenient to him.

The waiter wants to convey that he thinks the parents should not leave the pushchair in the location they put it at. For example: The parents park the pushchair in front of the kitchen's door. The waiter wants to let them know that it is a bad place to put it at since it blocks the way for the service personnel.

Postman about not emptying the mailbox often enough.

"Das isch blöd" is used there because this person wants to express his/her anger that the mailbox doesn't get emptied as much as he/she would like. There, "bedauerlich" or "ärgerlich" (German) and "unfortunate" or even "annoying"/"upsetting" (English) would be translations that have a similar meaning in that situation, in my opinion.

A German translation for "Das isch blöd" could be "Das ist misslich" or "Das ist ungünstig" or "Das ist ärgerlich" or in some cases "Das ist doof". In English, it could be translated to "unfortunate", "annoying" or sometimes "silly".

Again, it has to be emphasized that it depends on the context and in some cases the Swiss German word "blöd" really means "stupid", or, in extreme contexts, "shitty".

I hope this helps you.

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1

http://www.duden.de/rechtschreibung/bloed#Bedeutung3

Gebrauch umgangssprachlich

unangenehm, ärgerlich

Beispiele

eine blöde Sache

zu blöd, dass ich das vergessen habe

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0

I would argue that "dumb" conveys roughly the same level of disapproval in English.

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