Jant Sied votes!

Jant Sied votes!

Jant Sied will finally be heading to the polls to vote on the controversial removal of the letter “n” from the Plautdietsch language. For those who may not know, Jant Sied has for years exploited the letter “n” to offer a distinction from other Plautdietsch speaking Mennonites.

Jant Sieda have added an “n” onto many words.


(cook) koake became koaken

(smear) schmäare became schmäaren

(drive) foare became foarn

(say) saje became sajen

The Menno Tribune asked some of the locals about their thoughts on what happens if the vote passes. John Hilderdrand from Altona says, “I guess we’ve carried our noses high enough in the past hundred years. So maybe it’s time to let the younger generation be a little more humble”. Tina Ginter from Winkler says, “This is where all the problems start!   Remember what happened when we stared to allow dancing? It led to drinking! The same thing is going to happen to Plautdietsch! What’s next? Removing other letters like, a, e, i, o, and u?! Maybe everyone will stop speaking Plautdietsch all-together! And then what?”

We also asked for opinions on Dit Sied. Shirley Wiebe says, “it’s about time! We always thought our cousins in Plum Coulee were so “hoity-toity” when we went to visit.   I mean, seriously! We all eat kielke the same way and pull up our stremp the same way. Why can’t we have the same Plautdietsch?” Harry Harder from New Bothwell says, “I think it was their way of trying to instigate fights. But we can hold our own. I’m ok either way".

The Menno Tribune will keep you up to date on the results of advance polling as we wade into these uncertain times of Plautdietsch.

In other news, Ontario has finally granted Toronto's application to join the Jant Sied confederation.

It’s been years in the making! The province of Ontario has finally approved the new areas to be designated “Dit Sied and Jant Sied”. It would appear that Ontario Mennonites were always feeling left out when it came to which side they were on. The distinction of Jant Sied has long since belonged only to Manitoba Mennonites who have the two sides of reference. But that is about to change. Ontario has approved the new areas that will carry the same name distinctions as areas in Manitoba.

The Mennonite Enquirer traveled to Dit Sied Ontario to gain the reaction of the locals. Anne Toews of Toronto says, “We already talk like people on Dit Sied, so it works for me. Mennonites in Jant Sied (Aylmer) for instance talk with an “n” after everything so they’re easy to distinguish. They say, foaren, koaken, foaken, schmern, äten and like that. We’re Torontonian Mennonites and we don’t have time to talk like that so I’m glad we’re on Dit Sied”. Ben Peters says, “it seems only logical that Dit Sied should start at Toronto. I’m not bragging, I’m just saying. And now we’ll have the chance to make that long trip to visit frintshoft in Jant Sied. I’m looking forward to going to the Abram Leoppkys for faspa. That way we can stop off and pick up varscht in Kitchener on the way back”.

The reaction in Jant Sied Ontario seems to be a bit more mixed. “I’m suspicious that the government put us in Jant Sied for tax purposes”, says Anthony Plett. I mean, think of it. Most Torontonians think that milk comes from a grocery store and that Kielke come from mom’s kitchen. So I’m happy to be in Jant Sied. Out here we’ve got our hands on the plow”

The Mennonite Enquirer has learned that other provinces intend to following suit with offering their own “Dit Sied and Jant Sied”. British Columbia intends to make everything on the Abbotsford side of the Rocky Mountains Dit Sied and everything on the other side of the Rockies Jant Sied.

Call it Jant Sied envy if you will, Ontario can now also ask the famous question, “best du von Dit Sied ooda Jant Sied?”

Make sure to follow us so that you don't miss out on the Plautdietsch word of the day and other stories and articles on our Menno Tribune Facebook page. You haven't done that yet?  Na oba!  Click on Leina and Hein below and it will take you to the Menno Tribune and hit the "follow" button. Daut es emm sonnst! And remember to forward the Menno Tribune Facebook link to your friends and frintshoft!

Kjenn jie noch Plautdietsh? Enjoy getting reacquainted with those forgotten Plautdietsch words of yesteryear and learn interesting new phrases that you may have never heard before!  We have three different dictionaries to choose from!

Pay full price for something? Oba nay!

In time long long ago,..a time almost before time,… before Costco….before the Mall, before Kmart…there was Eaton’s em tyala?   It was a place that all Mennos knew well. It was a wonderful place where discounts were to be had on any given day and you didn’t have to buy a membership to shop there. Where exactly was this place of utopian Mennonite discounts, you ask? To the English speaking, it was known as Eaton’s annex. Mennonites referred to it as “Eaton’s em tyala” (Eaton’s in the basement)


Eaton’s made a practice of moving old or discontinued merchandise to the basement where everything would be marked down for clearance. And the Mennonites could smell bargains much like a bloodhound could smell varscht on a cold autumn day. It was there that Mennos shopped for everyday and long-term necessities at discounted prices. Many a haul made it’s way from the basement of the Winnipeg Eaton’s store to the various Mennonite communities of southeast Manitoba. Boasting of bargains was not the style of Mennonites. When asked, “where did you buy that?”, the reply may simply have been, “Eaton’s em tyala”.

Menno’s tip of the day

The lost Mennonite art of “spoare / spoaren”.   With this handy tip, you’ll save enough to get a varscht for free. Next time you go to a restaurant for freestitj, ask for extra jam and peanut butter but don’t use all of it. If you’re having breakfast with friends, ask them to do the same. Before leaving, collect all the jam and peanut butter containers and take them home. This will save you almost $12.50 a year in the cost of jam and peanut putter.   Which means that you’ll have saved enough to get a farmer sausage!  Add an onion and 2 cups of flour to make Kielke and you’ve got a four serving dinner for free!

Note: Obayo is not affiliated with Kraft nor Smuckers. We simply encourage taking home any and all restaurant jams and peanut butter regardless of brand.









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