Last Summer, I went on a family trip to Kiel in Germany, to meet long-lost German relatives and have a little memorial for the passing of my German grandma, affectionately known as Oma. It was here that I learnt about schadenfreude, a German concept that translates to ‘pleasure derived by someone from another person’s misfortune.’ Oma liked to have a good laugh, but she laughed the loudest when it was at somebody else’s expense.
In reality, I think that even the best of people are prone to a little schadenfreude now and then. If it wasn’t the case, then ‘Fail Army’ wouldn’t have 13 million plus subscribers on You Tube. And while I don’t think it does any harm to laugh at a video of a cat destroying a yoga video, or a dad falling off a rope swing into muddy water below, it’s really nice sometimes to see the opposite.
In this spirit, I’ve posted a 4 minute ‘epic wins’ clip below. I’ve watched this with students in morning registration a few times – we laugh, we gasp and at times, our mouths fall open in astonishment as see people achieve the impossible. Enjoy!
Did you know that schadenfreude literally translates to ‘damage joy’? Are you prone to this yourself? Do you enjoy watching helmet-less skateboarding teenagers slide into chaos? Or do you prefer to watch incredible sporting wins? Comments welcome: