How can you write faster - with the computer or with pen and paper? For the stenographer Anne Marie Mersch, the answer is clear: without electronics. 260 syllables per minute, it creates - so that they can write there a speech live, though scarce. Even those who are blind can use the keyboard with ten fingers, cometh not with.
Peers intently the 22-year-old on the lined sheet that lies before her. Your hands move smoothly over it - not even so much faster than the longhand. But for what would fill a whole A4 page in normal ABC, it needs only a few lines. Some words she captures in a single character.
Mersch is one of the top junior stenographer in Germany. First place in national youth competitions and World Championships, she has achieved. She is currently studying German in Dusseldorf - with one goal: to work as a stenographer in the North Rhine-Westphalian state. There she is already employed as a student assistant.
"I am a stenographer child," says Mersch.Because the talent was her set of parents in the cradle. The already took part in self-Bet letter and got to know it. "At some point as a child I got my mother asked if she can teach me during the summer holidays," says Mersch. And since the first lessons she's stuck with it.Hobby and career aspirations at the same time? "Yes, definitely," says Mersch and grins. Ridiculed they will but not more envied because she knew exactly what she wanted to do later.
But the advantages of their special knowledge even now: "Especially in the study when films are shown in a presentation only briefly, I can write there much faster than the fellow students," said Mersch. Since they can often times help out with details.
In parliament stenographer sitting directly in plenary sessions in the hall and record every word spoken - full concentration is needed. Seven and a half minutes they write with, then tap the shorthand in the computer so that it can log in immediately.Meanwhile writes to the nearest stenographer. And so it goes for several hours in alternating layers.
If Mersch makes it to her studies at this place, it will also document speeches by Prime Minister Hannelore Kraft (SPD). "I'm very politically interested - that you have to be," says Mersch. To find young talent is not easy. In parliament, although ten sites are currently occupied, but the selection of stenographers is much lower than it was thirty years ago.
Mersch also operates the shorthand as a sport.
My trainer knows what it takes: "One must have the ability to recreate the text and write from memory," explains Gerd Rölleke.
The 77-year-old is a board in Dortmund stenographer club
, which meets twice a week for practice sessions.
Already with 15 Rölleke occurred at his high school in the student's stenographer club and is now a veteran in the scene. "Art is not a quick letter. Art is the sensible shortening" says Rölleke. A workout that keep the brain fit in old age. The oldest participant in the course is 78
One of the exercises: With a stopwatch in hand Rölleke begins a speech in the Bundestag from memory. "As if I were Chancellor," says the Stenografielehrer.Mersch tips her ears - that's exactly the right job for them. ( Catherine Hölter, dpa )