Germans are always on time. True or false? In his sixth column, Peter Zudeick finds out if Germans are pathologically punctual - or just clock-watchers.
Germans are famously punctual, and proud of it. You can set your clocks by us. Admittedly, Germans didn't invent the clock, but we are trailblazers when it comes to making things as reliable as clockwork. If they weren't, disaster would surely strike. That's why trains, buses and planes are always on time on Germany, and anyone who disagrees has a screw loose. Even major projects such as new international airports always get finished on time…er…at least, in principle. If they don't, it must be someone else's fault. It was probably sabotaged.
They say that "punctuality is the politeness of kings." Fair enough. But that's not to say that Germans are punctual because they're royalists. They just are. German philosopher Immanuel Kant allegedly got up at 5 a.m. every morning, went to his university at 7 a.m., worked from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on his books, took a walk at 3.30 p.m. - seven times up and down the Lindenallee in the Prussian city of Königsberg, never more, never less - and went to bed at 10 p.m. sharp. Kant is the poster boy for German punctuality.
It has to be said that not all Germans follow his example. But they try. Nearly 85 percent of Germans say they take their appointments seriously and expect others to do the same. In Germany, the rule of thumb is that it's better to be five minutes early than one minute late. According to one turn of phrase - "pünktlich wie die Maurer" - bricklayers are especially punctual, at least when it comes to laying down their tools. It's said that they never work a second beyond their shift. Perhaps that's as much of a German tradition as punctuality.
Trumped-up charges are to be leveled at more than a dozen recently arrested Turkish journalists. DW talks to Turkey-analyst Günter Seufert about why the Turkish president is going after them now.
The Bundesliga has come to a close until the end of January. Bayern Munich are runaway leaders, while there's intrigue elsewhere. We're asking DW readers: What are your top moments so far? Get in touch!
A disastrous first half of the season came to an end with a defeat at Werder Bremen. Now Jürgen Klopp has time to assess where Dortmund went wrong and how they can avoid the very real threat of relegation.