"Danko." "You're welcome."

VicNicSor

Banned
Russian
In Chicago, a man checks in at a hotel, comes up to the receptionist:
— Danko. [his last name]
— You're welcome. [laughing at his joke]
Red Heat, film

Is the joke that it sounds like "thank you" in German?
Thanks.
 
  • Andygc

    Senior Member
    British English
    It sounds a bit like "thank you" in English rather more than it sounds like the German equivalent. It's not the best pun in the world. :rolleyes:
     

    VicNicSor

    Banned
    Russian
    It sounds a bit like "thank you" in English rather more than it sounds like the German equivalent. It's not the best pun in the world. :rolleyes:
    But the German "danke" sounds much alike to me like "Danko". Or did you mean the German "danke" is not much recognizable with Americans and wouldn't likely be used in a pun?..
     

    Andygc

    Senior Member
    British English
    Who knows, Vic? Why should an American film try to pun on a word that sounds vaguely like a German word ending in an unstressed "e"? Either way, it's a very weak pun. It certainly wouldn't get me rolling in the aisle.
     

    sdgraham

    Senior Member
    USA English
    it's a very weak pun.
    :thumbsup::thumbsup:
    ... or worse.

    Actually the German danke is reasonably well known by Americans, at least us old codgers, as the result of rather large numbers of German-speaking immigrants, post-WWII films and the 1968 pop song Danke Schoen, sung (and horribly mispronounced) by Wayne Newton.
     

    kentix

    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    Is the joke that it sounds like "thank you" in German?
    :thumbsup: I would bet a serious amount of money on that.

    I think it's definitely a play on the German word. It's well known by Americans in general and Chicago, where this scene is set, is home to and adjacent to areas where large numbers of people of German descent settled. Milwaukee, which is famous for it's German heritage (one of the beer capitals of the U.S.), is only 90 miles (144 km) up the road.

    Historically Chicago had an ethnic German population. As of the 2000 U.S. Census 15.8% of people in the Chicago area had German ancestry, and those of German ancestry were the largest ethnic group in 80% of Chicago's suburbs.

    Germans in Chicago - Wikipedia
     

    Cenzontle

    Senior Member
    English, U.S.
    If the receptionist perceived the name as German "Danke",
    then why did he/she respond in English with "You're welcome",
    rather than the German equivalent (which would be "Bitte", if I'm not mistaken)?
    Does Mr. Danko pronounce his name to rhyme more with "thank", or more with "Danke" (different vowels)?
     

    Myridon

    Senior Member
    English - US
    If the receptionist perceived the name as German "Danke",
    then why did he/she respond in English with "You're welcome",
    rather than the German equivalent (which would be "Bitte", if I'm not mistaken)?
    Does Mr. Danko pronounce his name to rhyme more with "thank", or more with "Danke" (different vowels)?
    She did it to be obviously funny, rather than subtly funny. (If he's not expecting a reply in German, she'd just sound like she mumbled something.)
     

    kentix

    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    It might be more accurate to say that he chose to perceive it as the German word. So he could make the joke. It doesn't matter that it wasn't a perfect match, it only had to be close enough. If he's laughing at his own joke, subtlety is probably not something he's too concerned with.
     
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