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  5. "Ich mache mir einen Kaffee."

"Ich mache mir einen Kaffee."

Translation:I am fixing myself a coffee.

August 13, 2013



The translation utilized "fixing". This seems very uncommon, isn't it?


Not when applied to food or drink. See definition #6 here: http://oald8.oxfordlearnersdictionaries.com/dictionary/fix_1


Sure, but it seems not very common, is it? If I search for the phrase I don't get many good results. The ngram viewer seems to support my thesis: https://books.google.com/ngrams/graph?content=fix++coffee%2Cmake++coffee&case_insensitive=on&year_start=1500&year_end=2008&corpus=0&smoothing=3


I personally only use "fix" with alcoholic drinks. If I asked my buddy "Can I fix you a drink" I'm implying something like a screwdriver, rye and coke, gin and tonic sort of thing. For coffee, I would say "Can I make you a coffee". I imagine that "make" is more common, but "fix" is nothing out of the ordinary. (Speaking for Canadian/North American English)


Same here. Texans don't say fix for a drink unless it's a mixed drink. It implies changing the state of something.

If you fix a drink, you mix ingredients. If you fix a plate of food, you're putting various foods on the plate (rice, beans, meat, etc.).


For a beginner in English that debate is very, very interesting! I'm Brazilian but I'm learning more English here than German!


Definitely a North American thing, rather than a British usage. Not it's not understood (what with all the US televisual imports) - but it's not common usage.

'Making' would be the term in this part of Britain.


Same in Australia. We understand it but it's not in general use. Very North American. We 'make' something we are going to eat or drink (or sleep in), we 'fix' something that's broken.


Same in my part of America


Even in North America this is a southern expression. Someone in Mississipi might fix you some supper. Someone from Washington State would want to know what was wrong with it that it needed fixing.


Yeah, I've only ever heard it in American movies. Interesting to see some AmE speakers on here saying it wouldn't be used in this context either though.


Sorry Richard God. Even God gets things wrong on this kind of matter. :-) It is NOT a North American thing or a correct THING from any other part of the world. You are right, Mr. God that it is uncommon usage, but I think it would be very difficult to find anyone on this earth that would translate it that way at all.


It would be understood for meals (here in Ireland). It implies a quick and simple preparation of something to eat. It's uncommon for simple things like coffee. But you might fix a sandwich as a quick snack.


My relatives in the US used to say fix for meals or drinks, but that was my grandparent's generation who are not around now so it may be old fashioned.


Hi Potato Santa. How in holy heaven did you ever achieve so many 25 levels? 17 25s must be a record for Duolingo. You must spend all of your time doing nothing but learning languages. I'm curious as to what your profession is. Congratulations on your achievements.

By the way, in the south of the USA, it is very common for people to say "I'm fixin' to go downtown" or "I'm fixin' to change my clothes" which is the same as saying "I'm getting ready to do something." The translation that Duo offers here is unfortunately missing the words "a cup" and is simply wrong. I doubt seriously that it was ever translated Duo's way throughout history.

Out of curiosity, how many Lingots do you have? I'm sure my store of 4000 really looks meager in comparison. I give them away like candy.


I have definitely used and heard "fix you something to eat" before. It's not super common, but not overly rare either. (Midwestern American)


It's US dialect, I think.


It can also be used to show intentions, as in: "I'm fixing to go to the mall today," which is another way of saying: "I intend on going to the mall today" or "I am planning on going to the mall today"


I had the same opinion. The reason is that I have never seen this phrase before (English is not my mother tongue). It is a bit frustrating when you know the translation but you are not able to express it perfectly in English. :-(


Don't worry. 'Fixing a drink' is not commonly used except in the southeastern States of America. There, it is used for many purposes, including drink and food and intending to do something. It is not 'wrong' but I would not recommend its use unless you know your company.


I'm from California and I use "fixing" in the context... I think it's pretty common all over the states.


My first thought was "Is this German for speakers of Texan?" I understood it because I am from Texas but it still made me cringe. Would "I am making a coffee for myself" work? I answered with "I am making coffee" which Duo accepted but it still seemed like it should have been wrong to me. It didn't seem specific enough. A very common phrase when visiting my parents: "Come fix you a plate." or "I am fixing to mow the yard" something along those lines. =)


As a British English speaker, it's a turn of phrase I've only ever seen in American movies, usually (but not exclusively) by Southerners. I would say "I'm making myself a coffee" for this sentence. If I said "I am making coffee" it would usually be followed by "would anybody else like one" -- although I think that might just be a Me thing rather than a British thing.


While the word "fixing" may not be as common as "making," it is certainly not uncommon.

I use it mainly to refer to food preparation. "Go fix me a turkey pot-pie! What about you, Dad?"*

*Kudos if you know what movie this is from. (Hint: the title has something to do with "the most important meal of the day.")

[deactivated user]

    It is extremely uncommon outside the US. Wtf is a pot pie?


    The only title that comes to me is "The breakfast club" :D


    From Oklahoma here... The word, "fixin'" is synonymous with making, doing, getting ready, and I'm sure quite a few others. It's an essential part of the vocabulary here. Saw some other guy from Texas saying it's a little different, but in my experience with Texas it's not so much. Now I'm fixin' to finish this lesson and fix me a sandwich.


    Yep, I'm from Arkansas, and said the same thing (somewhere on here)!


    It's very much a southern thing (US). E.g. fixing supper, fixing to go somewhere. Not sure why Duolingo is using this phrase.


    I believe that 'fixing mysef a coffee' is used by Americans.


    Making is much more colloquial, but people would know what you mean and some people may use that term. In my mind fixing implies putting things together, like a mixed drink, or adding sugar and cream.


    Nice to learn so much about Americanisms while trying to translate form German to UK English ;-)


    If fix myself is ok, then make me or make myself should be accepted too


    Am i correct in understanding that the act of brewing the coffee uses kochen (Ich koche einen Kaffee), while asking or stating whom you are making the coffee for uses machen (Ich mache mir einen Kaffee)? I was taught that one cooks coffee in german, not makes it.


    Machen is perfektly fine and is as often used as kochen. Actually kochen doesn't really nail what is going on when you actually scald it (not sure if that is the right word in english).

    Most people use one of several techniques to have the coffee in a filter and pour 80°C hot water over it, be it manually or with the help of a maschine, coffe pads/pods or such. There are very few people who actually cook the coffe in a can in boiling water. Thus there are better german words for the process but they are rarely used:

    *Einen Kaffee aufsetzen"

    Ich brühe uns einen Kaffe auf (scald or brew)



    Is there a difference in 'Ich mache mich' and 'Ich mache mir'? Thanks in advance!


    Absolutely. mich is an accusitive preposition and mir is a dative preposition. An understanding of direct objects (accusitive) and indirect objects (dative) is necessary. In the sentence, "I make myself a coffee", the subject of the sentence (nominative) is I, the direct objective (the noun that is taking the action - i.e. what is being made) is the coffee, and the indirect object (the noun that receives the direct object - i.e. who is receiving the coffee) is myself. So in the german translation, you must use: Ich mache mir einen Kaffee. Ich is the nominative, einen Kaffee is the accusitive (note the accusitive ending for ein), and mir is the dative form of me/myself.

    [deactivated user]

      "Fixing" in this context is slang. It doesn't belong in an introductory language course.


      Agreed. So is 'a coffee.'


      "a Coffee"? I don't think you'd say that. Either just 'coffee' without the article or 'a cup of coffee', 'a pot of coffee', 'a mug of coffee' etc. Comments anyone?


      I made myself a coffee this morning and I bought a coffee this afternoon.

      Extremely common usage in Canada (at least from Ontario eastward), and I'm pretty sure the US too (from TV exposure...haven't visited). I don't know about UK or AUS. "A tea" is also common, as is "a drink".

      • I'm making myself a tea.
      • I'm fixing myself a drink.
      • I'm pouring a beer.

      I don't think it works well with juice or milk though.

      • I'm pouring myself a juice.
      • I'm pouring myself a milk.

      Maybe it works for other people, but the juice and milk examples sound odd to me without adding "glass of" or replacing "a" with "some".


      In Ireland (and I think UK) you don't refer to "a tea", but "tea" or "a cup of tea". Your other examples (a beer etc) are valid in Irish English / British English.

      Valid: I am making tea. I am drinking tea. I am drinking a cup of tea. I am making a cup of tea.


      UK dweller here. I've used (and heard) "a tea/coffee" fairly regularly, usually referring to a single cup of tea/coffee.

      "I'm making a coffee", or "Do you want a coffee?".

      Wouldn't say "I'm drinking a tea/coffee" though, and I don't think I've heard that before.


      We don't say "I am making myself a tea" in the southern US either. :(


      In the northeastern and southeastern US, I have literally never heard someone reference "a coffee." You always say "I am making some coffee" or just "I am making coffee." So I think the translation is a bit unfair because it sounds unnatural to a lot of English speakers who haven't heard it before...


      Yes, I agree!

      • 2106

      Agree on juice and milk, but I would also include both tea and coffee in the category needing "glass of," "cup of," etc.


      I'm not sure that "a coffee" is wrong, but I definitely think that "a cup of coffee" should be accepted, which it wasn't for me


      That would be "ich mache mir eine Tasse Kafee" then.


      Yes, but that is kind of implied ...


      If you don't like "a coffee," which sounds just fine to many English speakers here, including myself, then the next closest thing would be "some coffee."



      It's not implied to the point where you can add the word "cup" to a sentence where there is none in German, especially when there are (more or less) direct translations for "a coffee" and "a cup of coffee" respectively. This isn't a special case where you have to rely on an approximate translation.

      As you progress, you'll have to consider nuances between possible translations rather than relying on what the original sentence is basically trying to get across, or trying to force specifics where there were none to begin with.


      ... since "a coffee" would sound unnatural to many English speakers, as it is seen above


      I agree with you! I would never say I was making myself a coffee. I would have to say a cup of coffee. Obviously some dialectal differences here. I live in Wisconsin. Nobody would ever talk about "a coffee" has to be "a cup of coffee" I never realized how impossible it was to talk about servings of beverages without a measure word : )


      Just an update: "I make myself some coffee" is not accepted either ... not that it changes my original objection:)


      I make myself would be ich mache selber not you or somebody else would make it but me, myself. it's not the same as "I make the coffe FOR myself, for me.


      Very interesting. There are some differences in this topic between eastern Canada and the parts of the US I know best (southwest). Let me try to navigate this text to compare with your sample cases to see how this goes: I'm making myself a tea. No, a cup of, a pot of I'm fixing myself a drink.. Yes I'm pouring a beer............Yes or a can of beer I'm pouring myself a juice.Yes or just some juice (as in give me..) I'm pouring myself a milk. No, a glass of milk ......................................a glass of wine ......................................a cup of coffee,unless it's specific (a cappucino, an espresso)

      I'd say it's pretty difficult to draw conclusions. Regional differences abound


      Speaking as someone from the South Eastern US, I have to agree with Hohenems. The difference to me is, if someone said "I am making myself coffee". I would assume they are making a pot of coffee. If they said, "I am making myself a coffee". I would assume they were just getting a cup. This is just an personal anecdote of course, not proof one way or the other! :-)


      Just to note, in UK English, it's a bit different. It's unusual (I've never encountered it) to say that we're making 'a coffee'. We talk about 'some coffee', or else simply 'coffee'.


      I generally do that, too, but it seems unfair to discriminate against people because they have a different dialect of English.


      Works also fine with beer, in German as well as in English.

      I would like to have a cold beer .... und für mich bitte auch ein Bier


      a coffee is common in Texas, too, in the same way Hohenems describes.

      If you make coffee then you make a pot or cup or jug or vial or flask or something you aren't specifying in size. If you make a coffee, you make a single serving of coffee.

      It's the same way with other things. Hohenems wonders aloud about a milk and a juice. These both work in Texas if you have pre-packaged milk or juice boxes. If you have a box of 8oz plastic and aluminum foil orange juices from the store, you can say I'm going to get a juice and it means you're going to get one of those 8oz juice boxes.


      I translated it as "I make myself some coffee"as that is what I would say, but the program wants "a coffee!"


      Very common in Ireland to refer to "a coffee" to mean "a cup of coffee"


      I agree. Either a xxx of coffee or some coffee.


      Fixing would not be used in British English. "I am making myself a coffee" would probably be an answer to "What are you doing with that kettle". Most common would be, "I'm having a coffee" or "I'm going to have a coffee"


      why not "I am making myself a coffee." ?


      That should be accepted as an alternative.


      thanks, have reported it.


      I would say "I am making myself coffee" or "I am making myself a cup of coffee" in English, but not "making myself a coffee."


      Yes! And I would say, "May I pour you a cup of coffee?" or "Would you like a cup of coffee?" or "Do you want coffee?" The phrase "a coffee" is not natural to me at all (northeast US).


      "I make myself a (cup of) coffee" seems to be the most neutral and common way to say it in US.


      Fixing a coffee!! Seriously? :(


      This would be an american colloquialism. As a Brit it took me by surprise


      I would believe I'm making myself a Coffee than fixing


      Fixing only means preparing in the US. Everywhere else it means repairing. So this translation sounds really stupid to most English speakers... "my coffee is broken so I'm fixing it". Learners need to note this.


      Not native English speaker here. Is "I prepare myself a coffee" wrong? There are not many results for that in google, but still a few.


      In German the word "prepare" (as in food preparation) is "zubereiten." Here's an example:

      "Ich bereite meinen Kaffee gerne mit der French Press zu." "I like to prepare my coffee with the French press."

      Notice how the verb "zubereiten" is similar to the adjective "bereit," which means "ready?" Zubereit means "to prepare," "to ready," or "to make ready."

      *BONUS TIP: The expressions "to ready" and "to make ready" don't seem to be all that frequently used, at least in American English:

      "Ready your weapons, men!" "Make ready all of your things."

      Both of those sentences sound a bit archaic over here.


      That sentence is just fine. Using the word "prepare" makes it sound a bit formal, which I imagine is why it's less common.


      So if I wanted to say 'I'm making myself a coffee, would you like one too?', would 'Ich mache mir einen Kaffee, moechtest du auch?' be correct?


      I think "Ich mache mir einen Kaffee. Möchtest du auch einen?" would be ok.


      Why is it "mir" and not "mich"??? I have seen both before in different sentences in the reflexive.


      Ich mache mir Kaffee is not reflexive! The verb can get Dative! I have not heard "Ich mache mich Kaffee"!


      Hahahahaha "I am fixing myself a coffee". That's a joke


      In New Zealand people would say. "I am making some coffee" (meaning filtered or plunger) and then add. "Would you like some/a cup? I would never say " fix you a coffee". If I was offering instant coffee or tea i say "would you like a cup of tea or coffee". Some older people might say " can i fix you a snack" but i wouldn't.


      Without giving a context, this sentence could easily apply to a "future" action (spontaneous decision in English) , so another translation would be: "I'll make myself a coffee." THis kind of phrase is often translated with the present tense in German when the action immediately follows speech. I think you should include this translation.


      As a native English speaker, following this discussion has made me so aware of how complex English is. People say that one doesn't use "a coffee". And for the most part that is true, except for if you're ordering a coffee at a café. "I'll have a coffee, [details about coffee you want]." Or if you say you say, "I'm gonna go get a coffee [from a café]. But you always say, "I'm making coffee" if you're at home. I'd never thought about this before. "Fixing" isn't an expression I had even heard of until a Southern friend said it to me when I was 16! And people on here haven't known that other people don't know what it means! It's really interesting.


      That's basically true what you said. But most people now have these espresso-style coffee machines at home, which use capsules to produce individual portions of coffee. In this case, it would be correct to say, "I'm making a coffee, do you want one, too?" since this refers to individual cups or portions (just like in the café you mentioned above)


      Better use "making" instead of "fixing".


      Would i be right in saying swapping mir for selbst would mean like you are making it yourself?


      Fixing is used by drug users mostly... Since drinking coffee is also an addiction, it makes sense.


      Why "mir" not "mich"? But "machen" is not dative?


      It's not a dative verb as such, not like helfen or something. But it can have an accusative and a dative object.

      Ich mache einen Kaffee. - I'm making a cup of coffee.

      Just the accusative object. Then you can specify for whom with the addition of the dative object.

      Ich mache dir einen Kaffee. - I'm making you a cup of coffee.


      So I wrote: "I'll make myself a coffee", which I know does not match literally. But I'm sure that's the way my German friends use it. I think at this stage DuoLingo can accept such translations.


      Yes, everyone, "fixing" is quite alright. I have lived in the Southern United States for quite some time and I heard it on a daily basis. I had made some Southern friends and my friends' mom would say "icebox" and "I reckon (so)" a lot. " I reckon (so)" sort of means "I suppose" and "icebox" means "freezer" I believe.


      An "icebox" is a refrigerator, not a freezer. The ice is put in to keep things cool (refrigerated), it doesn't freeze things.


      Correct answer: "I make me one coffee." Really?? If I said that, my wife who teaches Kindergarten, would slap me up the side of the head.


      You don't say "a" coffee in English. You say "some" coffee.


      Fixing a coffee... But was it broken in the first place?


      These are some of the dumbest most boring exercises...


      This is slang in my opinion. I only try to fix things that are broken. Does anyone actually use 'fix' this way?


      To use "fixing" in this context is not the Queen's English


      Not all of us native English speakers have a queen! What makes this sentence so interesting and so dependent on context is the use of the reflexive. If I am making more than one cup, I would say "some coffee;" If I am making coffee only for myself, and not offering any to anybody else, I would say " I'm making myself some coffee.;" If someone asks me if I want a drink, I may respond, "No, I'm fixing myself a coffee." I would particularly use "fixing" over "making" if I am talking about a fancy coffee such as cappuccino or a latte.


      I remember an old Fess Parker movie where the Daniel Boone type of character was teaching some French children, who spoke perfect English, the "afixin tos": I'm afixin to, your afixin to ...


      Mine does that quite often too. I just hope it is growing pains.


      your translation really made me laugh! :-)


      I would rather use Making, preparing - even having/getting instead of fixing. I mean, when I want something to fix usually is to recover, to rework to make it (something) to work (again).


      Nobody would ever say that in English. Sorry, but not North American either. I lived in Georgia for 3 years. They sometimes said I'll fix myself a cup of coffee. But to "fix yourself a coffee" sounds utterly ridiculous even if it is grammatically correct. The best reflexive translation, after living as an American in Germany for 40 years, is "I am making myself a cup of coffee."


      to fix a coffee?? Very strange!


      I was stuck on this question looking for the correct verb but apparently it was just "fixing"


      I'm from Ireland and this does indeed sound very American to me (though I'm sure it's not used everywhere in the U.S. either judging by the comments). We would commonly say "making" in this context.


      This sounds like an American expression to me. In the UK we would never use fix in this context. We make coffee.


      is the translation correct? i dont believe so


      It sounds fine to me.


      Aye, the meaning is there. People get pernickety over the wording used, and it is perhaps an oddly regional choice for the default translation, but at the end of the day, it's all about whether the meaning is translated, and it is.


      'fixing' grrrr.... not English as I know it.


      Suggest the more direct translation, Machen, to make/to do. Machen to fix i.e. Reparieren? surely not. I've made myself coffee for decades, never ever fixed it. Aware that it's common in the US, guess we have to live with double translation but a little hard on non native English speakers whatever their origin.


      It's more of an issue for natives who get wound up about it than it is for non-natives. For non-natives, it's as simple as noting any other regionalism. Not to mention that even the most pedestrian phrases have myriad translations—a mere double translation would truly be a gift.


      1.5 billion people are said to speak English to varying degrees. At best a few million people might use the term we're discussing. I'm not treating the translation as an issue in the way you described, i.e. personal preferences. I have an issue with this interpretation of the verb machen, we are after all dealing with the German, not Texan. The verb will crop up many times and to the majority of English speakers it will never mean "fix". Ich mache einkauf, ich mache eine maschine, etc, no fixing involved.


      I am making myself a coffee is the correct translation not "fixing". You do not use that form in Britain or Ireland.


      Southern US people down voted your comment just because they can't stand when people point out they're doing something wrong. ;)


      We use "fixing" in the southern United States, as in "I'll fix you something to eat."


      Never have I used or heard someone use the word 'fix' like this, except in movies


      "I am fixing myself a coffee" is more Southern US English vernacular. We don't say that in the North. It's "I am making myself a coffee". Just like Southerners go further and say "I'm fixing to" instead of "I'm going to".


      There is no such thing as "a coffee." It is the same as saying "a water." In other words, highly colloquial at best. Can someone point out if the better translation here is "some coffee," or, perhaps, "a cup of coffee." Then someone can report that as another correct answer because it only seems to accept "a coffee" at the moment.


      "I will make myself a coffee" should also be accepted, right?


      Using some Southern twang here


      Nobody "fixes" themselves a coffee.


      What does it mean? Am I tought bad English in my school?


      Can I fix you some sandwiches? If you have seen Bad Santa...


      I am fixing myself a coffee?

      Is this a UK thing? Sounds really, really weird. The literal translation of the German sentence is "I make myself a coffee" and (except for the bit about "a cup of") is what a US person would say.


      No it is certainly not ' a UK thing'


      To fix is to attach; thus "fixing coffee" means something like hammering it into a wall. Is it supposed to be something about making coffee which would be far more conventional. indeed, there wouldn't be any holes made by nails or screws!


      "to fix", at least in (southern style) American English means "to prepare" so "I am fixing myself a coffee." means "I am preparing a coffee for myself." or "I am making a coffee for myself."

      No, this isn't standard English, but if you travel in the southern US (more or less Georgia to Texas) or talk with someone from there you will hear "fixing" used this way quite often. e.g. "Are y'all fixin' to go to the store". So, it is probably worth knowing about it.


      "I am fixing myself a coffee." Who speaks like this?


      Would it be correct "I prepare myself a coffee"?

      I sounds kinda right to me


      Should it be here? I thought (mich/mir) in sentences with reflexive verbs don't have a meaning. It's more like a dative. Ich freue mich= I am happy. (mich is meaningless) Mach ihr einen Kaffee. (ihr has a meaning. referred to a woman or gilr)


      How can I say "I make a coffee for myself"?


      That's exactly the above sentence: "Ich mache mir einen Kaffee."


      Who wrote this. To fix a coffee. I would like to fix his girlfriend.


      I would rather say, "I am making some coffee, anyone elae want some?". I am an English snob. "I am making myself some coffee", is grammaticslly frightful. "I am making some coffee for myself" is the better way. Unless you are in the South if the USA. Here we use "fixin'" as it making was never a word. My parents hail feom New York, so I did not have that impediment.


      You cannot use fix in the place of make We say i want to make myself a coffee Fix is used for something else. It is not used to imply that you are making a coffee


      Yes, you can use "fix" in place of "make."

      "I'm fixing myself some coffee," and "I'm fixing myself a coffee" are both fine.

      You can fix breakfast, you can fix a turkey pot-pie, and it means "to make."


      Fixing is an American term and not correct English language


      "a coffee" is very awkward in English. "Some coffee" is much better.


      This is very untrue. "A coffee" is quite common.


      Depends on where you live, really. Both are correct.

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