1. noun. The sensation one gets when one sees another human being making a fool of themselves without knowing it. You know you are experiencing wagnehalt when you are watching someone commit wagenhalt and your skin crawls and you want to look up at God, or the aliens, or whomever is watching us and say: “I am not like those humans. I am not like them.”
A person committing wagenhalt, commits it unintentionally.
When we were coming up the name for the feeling of wagenhalt-there was another name proposed that actually caused wagenhalt: “Queerbumps”. Just saying queerbumps causes wagenhalt.
History: In 1993 I was on tour with MOBY and we had been trying to find a definition for the sensation one gets when watching a stoned white guy at a party play airbass to Pink Floyd while staring sincerely at you. Moby dared me to find a word for this feeling.
I had to take a tram from Zoo Garten to our hotel trying like mad to find a definition for wagenhalt. When someone on the tram pressed a button and: WAGENHALT appeared in big red letters at the front of the tram. It literally meant: “Stop the wagon!”. Eureka!
Like: "When my mother tried to speak like an old jewish man to tell a joke-she gave me serious Wägenhalt"
Watching the face of my drunk white boyfriend at a party play airbass to Pink Floyd gives me serious "Wagenhalt".
"When my mother tried to speak like an old jewish man to tell a joke-she gave me serious Wägenhalt"