There are chatty expressions in English, like in the middle of a conversation someone says:

[Getting angry]

Does it work the same in German? as in

[sauer werden]

Or such a thing isn't used in German and sounds strange?

  • 2
    How does one say spuared brackets? Commented Jun 23, 2013 at 10:03
  • 2
    If it is a comment in a script it would probably be written as [wird ärgerlich].
    – TaW
    Commented May 23, 2015 at 8:37
  • Es müsste auch "sauer werdend" heißen. Commented May 2, 2016 at 18:31

2 Answers 2


Do you mean oral conversation only or are you asking mainly about online chatting. Reason I ask is because you put "getting angry" between angle brackets, employed frequently by online chatters.

For both types of conversation, a "meta" comment about one's momentary feelings can be and does often get interspersed with the "regular" back-and-forth about the topic of the conversation.

Examples are:

Comic-book language, e.g,

Grr or Grübel

Appeals to outsiders

Halt mich fest (~ stop me before I kill again)

Statements of personal status

Bin schon wieder auf 180 (~ My blood pressure's hitting the roof)

To get back to your example,

sauer werden

strikes me more as a literal translation of "getting angry" than something that German speakers would actually type, or speak, as a meta comment in the midst of conversation.

sauer werd

on the other hand, could then be viewed as comic-book language (maximal and ungrammatical truncation of "Ich werde sauer") used to communicate one's personal status ("I am getting angry").

This particular example, in my opinion, would be found in online chatting sooner than in oral conversation.

  • 2
    Funny, as a German I always thought the "180" in "Bin schon wieder auf 180" refers to 180 km/h. ;)
    – Eekhoorn
    Commented Jun 22, 2013 at 9:35
  • Ein ehrlicher Ausdruck von Wut wäre auch wutschnaufend zu - nun, ja: schnaufen. Wer reflektierte Formen benutzt und eckige Klammern kunstvoll zum Ausdruck bringt, der ist offenbar emotional gar nicht so heftig involviert, wie er vorgibt. Commented Jun 23, 2013 at 10:08
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    sauer werd ist doch der wunderschöne Erikativ; mach ihn ned madig ;) (Und ja, er wird von gefühlt jedem Jugendlichen in Text-Chats jeglicher Art gebraucht, der Erikativ.)
    – Jan
    Commented May 2, 2016 at 15:03

There is such a thing, but it may still sound strange. ;-) (Depending on how much one is used to online chatting etc.)

It is called Inflektiv or Erikativ (after Erika Fuchs, translator of comic strips) and formed by dropping the infinitive ending -(e)n. Your example would thus become sauerwerd (also sauer werd, sauer-werd; official spelling rules don't cover it).

German Wikipedia has an article about Inflektiv.

  • 3
    Usually one should put the Inflektiv inside *…*.
    – Toscho
    Commented Jun 22, 2013 at 8:46
  • 2
    That's the usual way in chats, but not in comic strips.
    – chirlu
    Commented Jun 22, 2013 at 8:53
  • 1
    OP asked about chatty expressions.
    – Toscho
    Commented Jun 22, 2013 at 12:25
  • 'conversation, says' means spoken language, not written as in comics or SMS. Commented Jun 23, 2013 at 10:05

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