6

Die perfekte Ausrede für ein kleines Gelage, ruiniert dank Felix. Und dabei hatte ich gehofft, das mit ihm zusammen genießen zu können!

The context: "They can no longer sit back and enjoy the feast due to Felix's sudden disappearance. Felix was supposed to attend this feast, too."

I'm torn between two possible meanings:

  1. although / and yet / obwohl {added as an afterthought}

  2. and in this matter / in dieser Angelegenheit / bei dieser Sache

5

The meaning is close to 1), but it is hard to find a good literal translation because the structure is idiomatic. The writer/speaker wants to express that the part before and after the und dabei contradict logically, but in a more subjective and snarky way than a factual/neutral "although" or "and yet". The underlying nuance basically spells out "This was not supposed to happen, in my opinion".

Er verbrachte 10 Minuten damit, den Regenschirm zu finden. Und dabei schien die Sonne.

=> I almost say that I think he is crazy and wasted everyone's time.

Team A gewann gegen Team B. Und dabei hatte Team A einen Spieler weniger.

=> I almost say that I think that Team B should have won by all means in these circumstances. Either Team A is surprisingly good, or Team B is surprisingly bad.

Die perfekte Ausrede für ein kleines Gelage, ruiniert dank Felix. Und dabei hatte ich gehofft, das mit ihm zusammen genießen zu können!

=> I almost say that I think that he could have had so much fun, and still destroyed it for himself .. and me. What an idiot.

As said, it's hard to find a good translation for that. My suggestion to catch the spirit of annoyance in this example is a simple "and":

The perfect excuse for a little feast, ruined thanks to Felix. And I had hoped to enjoy it with him!

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  • I think that dabei used in such a context is a modal particle with the power to somewhat emphasize, contradictorily or not, whatever was said in the previous statement. Is this correct? – ΥΣΕΡ26328 Jun 26 '17 at 8:45
  • I think this idiomatic dabei is always in some way contradictory, and what is emphasized is this contradiction of the two statements, not the first statement itself. (Of course, there is the other, more literal meaning of dabei ("while doing this") that does indeed positively emphasize previous statements. But that's a different thing altogether). – Annatar Jun 26 '17 at 9:02
4

Used in this way, dabei essentially means

this is particularly bad, because ...

It emphasizes the disappointment of the speaker.

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3

»Und dabei hatte ich gehofft« could be (laboriously) replaced by

Und hinsichtlich des eben Erwähnten hatte ich doch gehofft ...
(And concerning what has been said before I really had hoped ...)

or better by

Wo ich doch gehofft hatte ...
(Although I had hoped ...)

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  • 1
    I would translate it with "although" too. – Rudy Velthuis Jun 26 '17 at 13:03
1

Und dabei hatte ich gehofft, das mit ihm zusammen genießen zu können!

Und ich hatte gehofft, das eben genau mit ihm zusammen genießen zu können!

These are pretty much the same. Dabei stresses the fact Felix is both the reason and the problem.

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  • 1
    Not convinced here; dabei might also appear in front of a different statement. E.g. "Dabei hatte ich mich so darauf gefreut." – O. R. Mapper Jun 26 '17 at 7:42

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