off-season, cucumber season [noun] [de komkommertijd, komkommertijden] ['kom-ko-mur-tijd']

"Komkommertijd" – literally "cucumber time" – is mostly used in its figurative meaning of off-season with respect to news and politics. KomkommerWhen the newspapers are thin because of holidays and when little or nothing is to report on politics – since all politicians are on leave – one speaks of "komkommertijd". In practice it comes down to the summer months of July and August.

Read an explanation of "komkommertijd" at wikipedia. The Dutch version is much better :-) 

The word "komkommer" was covered in DWOTD 10. Komkommer.

– "Het is weer komkommertijd, er staat bijna niets in de krant."
("It's 'komkommertijd' again, there is almost nothing in the newspaper.")

– "Wat een waardeloos en irrelevant nieuwsitem! Het is weer duidelijk komkommertijd."
("What a useless and irrelevant news item! Clearly it is 'komkommertijd' again.)

– "Mamma, wat betekent dat eigenlijk, komkommertijd?"
("Mo/ummy, what does it actually mean, 'komkommertijd' ?" The Dutch write both "mamma" and "mama".)

– "Ik heb het journaal gemist. Maar ach, wat boeit het, het is toch komkommertijd."
("I missed the news on tv. But ah well, who cares, it is 'komkommertijd' anyway." The Dutch have a specific word for the news program on tv: "journaal", where the "jour" is pronounced the French way. Literally "wat boeit het" translates to "what does it fascinate/enthrall" or something. It is quite informal.)

Related words:

– "Augurk": gherkin, pickle.

5 thoughts on “Komkommertijd

  1. A better translation of “wat boeit het” is the popular expression “I can’t be bothered” or (more fashionable) “I can’t be asked”.

  2. Sehr interessant. Auf Deutsch sagt man “Saure-Gurken-Zeit” (Eng. “pickle time” = “silly season”).

  3. Hi Sara, thanks for your suggestion! The translation “I can’t be bothered” works very well indeed for phrases with “boeien” that actually reflect the person’s opinion, such as:
    “Wat boeit mij het.”
    “Het kan mij niet boeien.”
    “Het boeit mij niet.”
    However, the phrase “wat boeit het” can also reflect a slightly more general opinion/observation, as in “what does it matter” or “who cares”, and I’m not sure “I can’t be bothered” works well there too. What do you think of the following example?
    Man: “Welke trui zal ik vandaag aandoen? De groene of de rode?”
    Vrouw: “Wat boeit het, als hij je maar warm houdt!”
    (Man: “Which sweater/jumper shall I wear today? The green one or the red one?”
    Woman: “What does it matter, as long as it keeps you warm!”)
    Can one translate “wat boeit het” here with “I can’t be bothered”?

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