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German phrase of the day: Tomaten auf den Augen haben

The Local Austria
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German phrase of the day: Tomaten auf den Augen haben
Photo: Francesco Ungaro / Unsplash + Nicolas Raymond / flickr

Whether tired or distracted, this fun phrase applies to many people - luckily usually not literally.


Fortunately, you’re unlikely to walk down the street in a German-speaking country and see someone with tomatoes in their eyes. But it’s very common for someone to be blind to their surroundings.

To have tomatoes in your eyes in German means that you aren’t aware or haven’t noticed what’s happening around you, whether it be the woman in front of you, or your cheating partner.

The term stems from the idea of being so tired and sleepy that your eyes are red like tomatoes. It’s also connected to a driver who does not move forward at a green traffic light because he or she only sees red.



Hast du Tomaten auf den Augen? Du merkst nicht, was du macht!

Are you blind? You’re not paying attention to what you’re doing!

Meine Kollegin wird bald entlassen werden, hast sie aber Tomaten auf den Augen.

My colleague will soon be fired but she’s oblivious.



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