I had to think about your post for a second, but if you're referring to the use of the word 'grass' as another name for weed/marihuana/cannabis, I must disappoint you. In Dutch the word 'gras' is not used as another name for that (as far as I know).
You're right, no link at all to drugs. I guess in Dutch there's no need to have a camouflage word for weed/marihuana/cannabis since nobody cares if you talk about it openly. :)
But I agree with the first comment, it is a funny sentence, even more without the link to drugs. Who on earth would pay with something so common, innocent and worthless (after it's cut) as grass. :)
One thing I don't think Duolingo will openly teach us about is all the cool slang names for drugs, sex, genitals and swear words. Will that ever change?
I don't think so. Duolingo is open to everyone, this includes all ages and cultures. There is no need to include words that will make a significant part of them uncomfortable. There are enough sources available for people that want to learn about those words.
I don't know about Belgian nicknames for marijuana, but I doubt they use gras for that. BTW in Belgium one is also allowed to have a few marijuana plants at home for personal use.
Ok, well it's a bit different than the Netherlands then. But still if that is your way of thinking, then it's illegal as well in the Netherlands, since that's the way it officially is, but for decades the policy simply is not to prosecute or confiscate small amounts. ;) And I'm not sure how the coffee shop permits look like…but I guess it comes down to "if you follow these rules then we condone you doing this illegal thing".
But clearly the condoning thing isn't the weirdest part. That is that it is illegal (and not condoned) to grow the stuff. In other words, by definition coffee shops have to do creative bookkeeping, because weed and hash "drop out of the sky" (are bought illegally by the coffee shop) and turn into this thing that can be sold (because it's condoned) to individuals. So the whole policy creates criminality (criminals grow the weed and are actively prosecuted). It's ridiculous that the growing for the purpose of selling to coffee shops isn't condoned similarly to how coffee shops themselves are condoned (still needing to comply by all kinds of rules), and this has been going on for decades...
I don't think that's right. I was just watching this:
At 7:20, a senior policeman says: "Want, in tegenstelling tot wat velen denken, is cannabis niet togelaten. Het is nog steeds strafbaar om cannabis te bezitten en te gebruiken. Maar er is een tolerantie, minder dan 3 gram voor persoonlijk word getolereerd. Het is te zeggen het parket zal niet onmiddelijk vervolgen. Maar het blijft strafbaar en daarom nemen wij het ook altijd in beslag."
So you're not alone in being confused. There's no way "a few plants" wouldn't exceed 3 grams, and there's a difference between between it being allowed, and them confiscating it but choosing not to prosecute you for a small amount.
Oh ok. Then it's just the English translation that sounds a bit dodgy... :-)
hahaha...I didn't think that. But you just gave me great laugh. Much more plausibly understandable sentence...
Perhaps a farmer settling a bill by letting a neighbours animals graze his land?
I know someone who does the reverse of this: a local farmer mows a field at the back of their house, and the grass the farmer collects (which he makes into hay) is his payment.
It is not off, I hear an r. But it is a very light r, so I can imagine it is difficult to hear for Dutch learners.
I think part of the difficulty in hearing the "r" rests in how "r" sounds in Dutch when following the letter "g." Like in the word "grens," the post-g "r" makes more of a sound almost more like a "w" or even "ü." Native Dutchies, please correct me if i am wrong!
To me it's funnier than the english slang interpretation to consider someone paying with literally a handful of grass.
"He paid with grace" would be a good English sentence, meaning that someone settled a bill without making a fuss, even though he or she thought it was a bit over the top - or, depending on their personality, a lot too much. Is their an equivalent phrase in Dutch?
There is an old American bumper sticker: "A**, grass, or cash. No one rides for free". Maybe Duo has seen one?