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No 617 Steinbach Nutcracker Basket Maker

Basket Maker-A direct literal translation of the German idiom Er hat einen Korb bekommen is He received a basket. The actual meaning however is altogether different and is used to describe a situation where a man’s romantic overtures to a lady have met with a flat rejection. In other words, when you gotten the basket”, you have gotten the brush-off. But fortunately, this is another matter and has absolutely nothing to do with our story, or; for that matter; with our little basket-maker. 

This fine fellow is here to sell his home-made wicker baskets.  Basket-makers are truly a rarity in Germany today. It is an artful hand- craft that is seldom practiced here anymore.  Also the surname Basketmaker is wellknown, as so called the director of the Toy Fair in Nurnberg of today.  Genuine wicker-baskets however are still made by basket-weavers in Poland and Rumania. Baskets of all shapes and sizes are transported from there by the wagon-load to Germany. But shipping these baskets is often a very expensive undertaking. It calls to mind an old German expression, which translated, roughly means the gravy is more expensive than the meat. Simply stated, this means that the freight cost is more expensive today than the cost of the entire basket. 

Our clever little fellow here however has seized a marketing opportunity. He goes with his baskets from house to house, and if the German freight forwarding costs continue to rise, our little basket salesman will soon be richer than the Postmaster!


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