Bitterballen, een bakkie pleur, koeietiet (cow tits), gezellig. As a new student in Rotterdam, you will learn a lot of new vocabularies in your first weeks. But due to the coronavirus, you probably won’t hang out in the bar as often as normal and your language development is hampered as a result. No worries, EM comes to the rescue by offering a crash course in local language.


When EM arrives with a bowl of bitterballen, the Italian student Raffaele William Bruni responds: “Bitterballen? Is that because they are bitter?” After tasting it himself, he’s converted. “They are delicious!”

Surprisingly, all international students have a good idea of ​​what ‘strontlazarus’ means. On the other hand, ‘een bakkie pleur’ catches some strange looks. By ‘spoorknor’, Dutch student Co Engberts thought of a ‘knor’ (a student who is not a member of a students association, ed.) who would love to become a member, but to no avail. Frustrated, Slovak student Viktoria Varga says: “The Dutch language is a joke.”