Thursday, April 23, 2009



occurring twice a year; semiannual.
occurring every two years; biennial.

Let me preface this by saying when we were discussing how to keep your language when you aren't able to speak to people regularly, I always think of soccer as the way i keep up. Soccer forces me to watch German language soccer programs and keep up with it on websites like and

That being said, I immediately had something in mind when I heard the word biannual. I know it seems that all my posts have to do with soccer but still. Germany's Bundesliga plays on a single table which means there are no conferences and all teams play each other twice, unlike the NFL where teams only play half the league. So back to the word. The teams biannually...or twice a year. There is what's known as a Hinrunde and Ruckerunde, essentially front round and return round, or back round. This is the same as Mexico's Apertura and Clausura league structure in FML, except there is no trophy for winning the Hinrunde or Rueckrunde, just a total one. There is a winter break between the two rounds lasting from early december to mid February. For example if Hertha Berlin played Bayern Muenchen (the kings of German fussball) at home in the Hinrunde, they would play in Muenchen in the rueckrunde. They play twice each year, making it a biannual event.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

 /daɪˈæfənəs/ [dahy-af-uh-nuhs] Show IPA
very sheer and light; almost completely transparent or translucent.
delicately hazy.

My first thought was the castle of Neuschwanstein in Southern Germany (not far from Austria, really).

Meaning New Swan Rock this castle is a product of King Ludwig, this castle is perpetually in mist and haze, so far up in the Alps. It has inspired Walt Disney (the Disney castle is based off of Neuschwanstein). The man who commissioned the castle is an epic hero and mysterious figure in Bavarian history.
King Ludwig was the patriarch of the Bavarian state. His eccentricity bankrupted the state (as he built castles all over, among other things) but he has been loved and admired by the Bavarian people as a father figure. He was great friends with the composer Wagner, who often played concerts in one of Neuschwanstein's fantasy rooms.