roughly: “bliss plug” / meaning: a cute yet slightly overweight child
Nobody likes skinny babies. Especially in Germany, where admiration for extra pounds is deeply rooted in the culture. A toddler needs a little bit of puppy fat to really appear adorable.
This arouses in us a feeling to pinch his well-fed cheek and say, “Was für ein Wonneproppen”—what a bundle of joy, so to speak. The advertising industry has also realized this and tends to favor babies who are actually a bit too full-figured. Experts are therefore warning against a dangerous role model. But we’ll ignore the fact that one in six German children are already considered overweight and focus on the linguistic side of childhood obesity.
In our example, Wonne is a beautiful yet dated word that describes a feeling of comfort and delight. As for the -proppen part, that’s a dialect form of the word Pfropfen (“plug”). It’s not entirely clear if this is as a result of plugs’ mostly round shape. My interpretation is that a Wonneproppen can replace a plug in your bathtub because he can seal the drain with his cute chubby baby butt.