Oct. 18th, 2017 07:05 pm
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I made my Brazilian friend laugh tonight...Usually, when I want to say 'how cool!', I say 'how legal!' -- 'que legal!' But I've been doing my Portuguese lessons, so I said a different word -- maneiro!, which means 'light' -- like 'not weighing much'.

He didn't know I knew the word, so it made him laugh. And he confirmed that I used it correctly. But he also gave me additional phrases to use...meaning I think the others would have been a better fit.

But it was good practice, and I like making him laugh with new words I learn!
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I go weeks between Portuguese lessons...This morning at breakfast, I went back online, and the lessons started me back at a quiz that I failed the first time....I have a vague memory from a few weeks ago of it being late at night and me getting exasperated and not re-trying the quiz again.

(You can retake the quizzes over and over until you pass -- the questions change a little each time. And you have to pass the quiz to continue to the next lesson.)

Problem with this course is that sometimes they ask me things in a quiz that I have NEVER heard! So, what happens is that I might miss that question and then see the correct answer. But this particular quiz had A LOT of things I had never heard. I tried the quiz about 4 times before I finally made it through!

Anyways, I've been doing the 'Portuguese' thing this morning, including listening to some Bossa Nova --
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I enjoyed my Brazilian friends' 1 year old's birthday party least at the end.

I am an American. We are generally pontual. Brazilians? Nope...not so much -- not pontual -- nope, not at all! The invite said it started at I got there when? At 4 of course, lol!

But that is NOT when it actually started!

As a side note -- my Portuguese is probably only level A2 in the European Common Language Level. Meaning, I cannot understand full speed Portuguese!

When I got there -- early by Brazilian standards -- my friend had to LEAVE and he didn't come back for like an hour, lol! So, I sat there, by myself, texting friends on my phone -- I didn't know anyone and didn't speak the language! People were all around me...talking...laughing...and then there is poor me, by myself, lol!

Anyways after he returned, I enjoyed myself...but it was pretty darned uncomfortable for an hour or so!

Needless to say, I am tired...but I'm glad that I can put myself in uncomfortable situations!


Jul. 25th, 2017 03:10 pm
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Had a very nice time with a friend at a wine bar last night. I was tipsier than I expected -- one of the wines was (do I remember the server correctly...) 14% alcohol?

Dinner with some other friends later this week. Should be fun!

I'm trying to re-start my social life a bit. A dear friend has been more and more unavailable to me for the last few months. He and I have always been sort of an 'odd couple'...but somehow we (maybe it was just me that..?) made it work for several years. But it has made me sad...And now I have to decide what the f**k to do with the small birthday present I bought him, which is sitting on a chair in my house!

Even when I don't get the words...I still listen to Brazilian music -- I figure if nothing else, it 'trains' my ear to the sound. And in this song, I looked up the lyrics..and there are a lot of words about Carnival that I don't really get...nor do I get the storyline. But it's pleasant music.

Headed over to the the fine art museum here to snap a few pics of Chloe -- the gigantic head outside of the museum. She's pretty eye catching! And flat from head on!
Chloe @ VMFA

Chloe @ VMFA
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In addition to the Flash cards, I decided to learn more parts of the body. So I printed out some skinless medicinal images of a body and began labeling them.

My friend laughed at me -- I was using Google Translate, which sometimes is NOT my friend, lol. I typed 'calf'. And Google gave me the word for a child of a cow....a calf...but not the 'leg' kind, lol!

The same thing happened with chest! Google gave me "o baú, but my friend says "o peito"!

So I had to correct several of the words I got from Google!

Então, tem cuidado! Be careful what you get from online translation services!

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Until I get a handle on the verb tenses, I'm afraid my Portuguese is always gonna be very mediocre.

They are just hard for me! In French, I had many classes over many years, all drilling le plus-que-parfait or le passė simple and many more into my thick head...But I don't have that in Portuguese, so I am now reduced to flash cards, lol! I printed them myself, and I intend to keep adding to them.

This morning, I chose 10, and I got 6 right....but the 4 I got wrong -- I really got wrong! So today I've been specifically practicing the 3rd person plural of present, past and imperfect of the verb fazer (to do/make): nós fazemos / nós fizemos / nós fazíamos.

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I don't even have words for Jabba...I see the end game (#Russia)...but it's being executed in such a stupid way...

And these people are completely insane....

It was a fricken typo, and Jabba was careless and let the tweet stay up for hours....but when I listened to the audio -- Spicer seems to be saying it was perfectly fine because a small group of people knew what he meant.

I mean damn -- EVERYONE KNEW WHAT HE MEANT -- from the context. The point is that this yokel typed a completely bad tweet...and didn't check behind himself...and doesn't have aides who would double check for him.

And if Spicer had just said it was a late night typo, it would have been odd...but not completely INSANE sounding!

One nice thing about having my language prefs set to Portuguese is that apps present a lot of Brazilian search results, etc. to me. When I clicked to see Tweets tagged with #covfefe, these were in my first page or 2 of results.

These Tweets made me laugh...

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No travel for me this holiday weekend...staying in town doing stuff...Yesterday, I took a walk downtown on Belle Isle..

I took the picture below on the island but did not post it at first because I couldn't decide if it was creepy or not. I see other folks online posting pictures of random people on the street -- I mean not 'street art', but photos of specific people they see around, and doing that always seemed a bit creepy to me.

So I sent the pic to a couple of friends, asking if it was creepy. And they both said it seemed pretty anonymous, so it was not creepy. I mentioned to one that the sunbather was center of attention in the photo, and that I was pretty close to him. That friend said the picture would not be as good further away.

Since they both thought it was fine, I went ahead an posted it!
Sunbather at the river

I met up with my sister today. She is changing careers and wants to open her own electrolysis business. She is going to school for it, including both classwork as well as practice. She needs 100 hours of practice, so I have been going nearly every weekend to her school so she can practice on me, lol!

And LORD KNOWS, I could use a bit of electrolysis on my back! I told my Brazilian friend about it after one session, and he asked if I was 'bald' -- careca -- but I misunderstood the word (I thought he asked if I was 'hairy'), so I answered como um macaco -- 'like a monkey!', lol...

Glad to get a bike ride in this morning. Still very short rides under 16 miles, but it feels great to be out on the bike!

I have just started talking to a guy in Brazil online. We have traded a few Whatsapp messages, text and voice. Now, he wants to talk directly on the phone, which is a bit nerve-wracking for me! He's cute...and has a nice voice. And really, if you can't flirt with a guy 6000 miles away, who on Earth can you flirt with, lol?

But it's so so hard to converse on the phone in a different language! We'll see. I told him maybe this holiday weekend. We shall see...

I bought a book for a friend for her birthday. Actually, I bought one for me and one for her, lol! Our gifts tend to have a theme, and that theme would be alcohol! It's a cute book! I like it -- it's about which plants are used to make cocktails and why, and it also includes recipes for the ingredients!

I have lavender growing outside, so I cut some, dried it and hung it in the kitchen --

Anyway, I think a friend is coming over for wine far the weekend has been nice!


May. 24th, 2017 09:27 pm
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Interesting evening tonight with my Brazilian friend...tonight was 'English only', but we sometimes have to improvise when we are communicating.

We met at the sorveteria -- the ice cream parlor that we often meet at...we always attract attention from the staff, as we switch back and forth between English and Portuguese!

His English is great (and my Portuguese kinda sucks)...but tonight he was trying to describe the type of Brazilian music NOT to listen to, and he was talking about a type of movement...he used the word 'rebolando', which Google Translate gave as 'rolling'...#NotHelpful

So he found some videos to explain -- 'rebolando' is 'twerking' in English.

Not my favorite move. Not my favorite type of music. No worries that I will try to learn Portuguese with this type of music!

Next time will be Portuguese only!
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The other day a video made the rounds on Twitter of a very angry, intolerant, prejudiced, wheelchair-bound xenophobe yelling at someone. Why? Evidently, just for speaking Spanish!

At first, I didn't listen to the video because I knew it would upset me, especially after I saw it autoplay (without sound) on Twitter. From the body language and facial language, I know I would not want to watch the video.

In a way, I still wish I had not watched it. So be warned!

The guy in the wheelchair evidently went ballistic because someone near him was speaking Spanish. The Spanish speaker was a Puerto Rican man near him was sitting in his chair speaking Spanish to his mom.

Other than the actual confrontation itself upsetting me...the other upsetting feelings I had was how sorry I felt for the xenophobe's ignorance!

==> Sorry for him that he had such hate weighing him down.
==> Sorry for him that he felt so self centered (and privileged) that he would even think of intruding on someone else's life like that.

I mean, how could another human language possibly upset him? Why in the world would you initiate a confrontation with someone over their language?? I love learning other languages, and the idea boggles my mind!

Why & how did the xenophobe allow himself to get to such a foul state of existence? Why is he so afraid of others?

Maybe I should feel sorry for the Spanish speaking guy for having his 'pursuit of happiness' so harshly intruded upon by such a hateful person...but really, all I could keep thinking was how sorry I was that the xenophobe was living with all that hate!

Now, I am certainly aware that a xenophobe is dangerous -- I mean, no matter how 'sorry' you might feel for a bomb, you certainly don't want to be around one...and that's how I feel about the xenophobe -- I don't want him around!

If the man had not been in a wheelchair, had not been in an airport, had not been being video taped, he would most likely have tried to hurt the Spanish speaking man -- after all, he bumped his wheelchair against them as it was. So, yea, a bomb.

In a perfect world, the xenophobe should have been arrested for public disorderly conduct. I think the Spanish speaking man handled himself very properly, although I think it would have been better to have stopped talking after a while because it was like adding gasoline to the fire.

In the post so far, I have avoided using the words 'white nationalist' or 'racist'. The man probably does hold those beliefs, but I really wanted to emphasize the hate and fear the guy seemed to have of another language and culture.

It just is crazy!
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I'm back to my Portuguese my Portuguese better? Yep! Is it great? Nope! LOL!

It's hard to 'really' learn a language without being immersed. Having a Brazilian friend helps a lot. And the lessons I take online help also...I like doing this, and I'll keep at it, but it's very slow going!

Música da licão hoje à noite --
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Couch surfer #3 stayed with me again last night. Fun guy, dinner, wine, talking. Tired now and early bed!

Now that I deleted that Facebook account, I have lots more time to do things, like READ!

Bone. Bombs and tantrums, when the world grew bitter because the world fell somehow short of half-remembered Eden.

Pretty depressing book! Slow moving, but good book. And I enjoy puzzling out the church Latin -- Fiat Homo. Fiat Lux. Fiat Vountas Tua. Funny how I could still understand some of the Latin -- even after all these years!

Lots of (church) Latin in the book because the story line is a monastery in the southwest US, which is preserving artifacts during the Dark Ages that occurred after the 'Deluge of Fire'.

Depressing because the basic point of the book is that mankind will destroy itself over and over again, whenever it has the technology to do it. Basically, whenever man has nuclear weapons, it will use them to end the world ("Sic Transit Mundus" -- Thus the world passes.)


Apr. 19th, 2017 09:54 pm
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So tiring!

Dinner with my Portuguese speaking friends tonight. I have not been practicing, so my Portuguese SUCKED!

And towards the end, he pulled up a Youtube of a Brazilian singer, and had me listen and repeat what I could exhausting! And good for me. And nice that he's teaching. But so exhausting!

I gave explanations to him also though. Like the meaning of 'to curse' -- from a song he wants to sing at church, and 'bottom' -- I included the meaning of 'butt', lol! And 'to realize' -- both to accomplish, and also to suddenly be conscious of something.
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I did a good job tonight explaining a pesky English phrase to my Portuguese speaking friend. I did this with the help of another friend here having wine with me tonight.

I received a message from my Portuguese speaking friend asking me to help him understand the phrase 'even though'. The request gave me pause as I tried to think of how to explain it.

With the help of wine, my other friend and I were discussing and searching Google, and the friend realized that 'even though' is an unexpected RESPONSE to a situation. The situation itself is not necessarily unexpected, but the RESPONSE is unexpected.

So, one of the examples I gave in this audio is "I bought a new car, even though I am quitting my job next week" -- buying a new car is an unexpected thing to do when you are planning to quit a job.

We native speakers "know" what phrases mean, even though it can be hard to explain them. (Do you see what I did there?)

And the Portuguese friend seemed to understand perfectly! I mispronounced 'resposta' in my recording, lol...

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I went out with the friend who helps me with my Portuguese tonight.

He does not drink alcohol, but he wanted to hang out with me. So we went to the Pig and the Pearl and sat at the bar. I drank Rye whiskey (uísque)...and he had orange juice!

I had fun! He had a cold coming on, so I hope I don't get it! I'm not ready for more of that..

We spoke mostly English tonight, so he told me the next time has to be mostly in Portuguese. That means I need to buckle down with some lessons. My ear is 'out of tune' so to speak.

I did learn to say 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th.....all the way to 10th tonight! (wow...sétimo, oítavo...really?)
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I got a message from my Brazilian friend that he had a bad night tonight. He said that sometimes he speaks English very well, and sometimes the words don't come to his mind.

I told him I had the same problem, and that it meant that we were both humans! And I told him it made me feel good that he had bad days because his English is SO MUCH better than my Portuguese that it made me feel better, lol!

I need to find a model that will tolerate me taking lots of pictures, lol! Right now, my model is me!

There's a guy who was in my ESL class, and I mentioned to him that I'd like to take some headshots of him if he wants to....He didn't say one way or the other, but I really like his sharp facial lines!
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I get so much vocabulary from his songs!

"Give me this night to say goodbye." -->
"Give me this night to dismiss myself."

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Me deixa água na boca

I like to learn a new Portuguese phrase at least every few days. This line from a song -- Me deixa água na boca -- means "It makes my mouth water" ("It leaves me with water in the mouth")

The biggest problem is that many times, the phrase doesn't stick with me.  It takes a few repetitions over a length of time (the "Pimsleur method") for it to really stick.

Não recomendado a sociedade

This is another phrase that came up this week.  It means "Not recommended for Society".  It is used for movies and novels, and means no one under 18.  So it more or less means our NC-17 (no children under 17). The song below is describing that he has a tag on his head/body 'Not Recommended for Society' --


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"O seguro morreu de velho, mas o desconfiado ainda está vivo." -- "The safe one died of old age, but the suspicious one is still living."