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Me pegó el alemán

 

An idiom is an expression whose meaning is not readily apparent based on the individual words in the expression. This forum is dedicated to discussing idioms and other sayings.


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  #1  
Old January 26, 2014, 03:00 PM
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Me pegó el alemán

What a strange expression, but Mexican friends tell me it's a way of saying I forgot (something). Has anyone else heard it?
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Old January 26, 2014, 03:48 PM
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They mean Alzheimer's disease.

It's nothing to laugh about if you think it seriously, but it's a way of trivializing the main trait of the illness, that is losing short-term memory.
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Old January 26, 2014, 03:59 PM
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Oh, so you've heard it too then? Thanks for the reference, and now I'll know to be careful about who I say it around!
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Old January 26, 2014, 07:35 PM
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Mexicans are believed to make jokes out of almost everything (death, catastrophes, illnesses...), and this "alemán" thing is a very common joke. So, although I guess many people who know or have at home patients with Alzheimer's disease wouldn't be amused, there will be many others who will just laugh about it.


Edit: People who joke about this are obviously not attacked (yet) by the disease... they just laugh about forgetting things.
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Last edited by AngelicaDeAlquezar; January 26, 2014 at 07:37 PM. Reason: Added note.
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Old January 27, 2014, 08:28 AM
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Sometimes victims and their family develop what English speakers call gallows humor. Although it may seem impious, they shouldn't be denied using it. It took me awhile to figure out why el alemán refers to Alzheimer's. Dr. Alzheimer is the German I assume.
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Old January 27, 2014, 02:34 PM
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I doubt most people know that the name of the disease is that of the man who studied it... if Dr. Alzheimer would have been Austrian or Swiss, they would still say "alemán", because that's how it sounds.
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Old January 27, 2014, 05:54 PM
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No solamente en México, ocurren esas generalidades. En el Peru el apodo de Fujimori es el chino.. En EEUU los Pennsylvania Dutch son de origen
alemán.
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