The Reasons I Fell in Love with the Spanish Language
I've been in love for quite some time now. She is beautiful absolutely knock dead gorgeous. She is quick with her thought, funny, soft spoken, eloquent, cultured, has exquisite taste and a beautiful voice. I'm deeply, oh so deeply in love. I'm in love with Spanish. And well, Spanish seems to be a little bit in love with me. It's wonderful. Spanish brings me to things I never would have thought of and opens doors, I never knew existed. I hope that after reading this page you will want to fall in love with a language of your own.
How does it make me Tick?
Tick. Until just now I never thought about the numerous meanings this word has. A clock makes a ticking sound. A tick can bite you. You can have a nervous tick. A tick is also a check mark, signifying completion. But I think the question “What makes you tick?” means what keeps you going, or what satisfies you-- it’s not a question about your cardiovascular system. I’m curious. I’m like some monkey, that chills with this dude with a yellow hat. I like to know things, I like to try things.
For example in Spain I ate buey, so about midway through my hamburger looking meat,
I asked my host brother, Sergio “Que es buey?” (What is buey)
I got the response, “Es como una vaca pero más grande.” (It’s like a cow, but bigger)
I replied “Pues, es un toro, no?” (Well then it’s a bull, right?)
“No es un buey, buey es buey.” (No it’s buey, buey is buey)
“Pues, es una girafa” (Well then it’s a giraffe)
Laughing “Jorge, buey es un animal que trabaja en los campos, es muy similar a un asno” (George, it’s a farm animal, it’s like a donkey)
So this became sort of like this game: what in the world is buey. I had all of the clues above. Then all I had to do was piece it together. So, finally I think I got it.
I said “Oh, I got it! It’s an ox!”
“Jorge yo no hablo ingles.” (George, I don’t speak English)
“Oh... perdona, es como una vaca pero más grande.” (Oh... sorry, it’s like a cow but bigger)
Ox is good with a lot of ketchup. Having new experiences and meeting new people keeps me ticking. I now have a tick (check).
La Noche Boca Arriba
The Things You Can Read, a Noche Boca Arriba
"So George, have you been challenged by a work of literature?"
"Well yes, ‘La Noche Boca Arriba’ by Julio Cortázar "
"Oh, how so?"
"How do I explain… So you're dreaming, right? You wake up, look around to see what's up, grab the pillow make sure no monsters are there, and it's cool— you were dreaming. The angry guy from 7-Eleven (dressed as a giant Slurpee) isn't really chasing you, and you didn't get knocked out. You say to yourself, I'm dreaming, go back to sleep, and begin to dream again... but this time, the Taco Bell chihuahua is now in cahoots with the Slurpee. Then you wake up, check yourself again, return to sleep... but the pattern keeps repeating. You suddenly realize that that the Slurpee world is the reality; waking was the dream.
So picture this twisty situation: the protagonist is hallucinating on an operating table. He thinks he is running through the jungle away from hungry Aztecas pursuing him for human sacrifice. The same cycle repeats, jungle-O.R.-jungle-O.R.-jungle. In the end the story reveals that the Aztecas runaway was actually hallucinating two hundred some years into the future to that spot on the operating table. It's ridiculously confusing. That's just one of Cortazar’s stories that I read in AP Spanish. It took me twelve years (or was it 4 hours?) to cipher through the preterit and imperfect to come to my initial, wrong conclusion— that reality was the O.R. Julio Cortázar went there, with “La Noche Boca Arriba” (the Night Face Up). He whipped me right across the face with magical realism. And I love him for it."
Do you think Bullfighting is wrong?
Tauromaquia, A Taste of Bullfighting and Culture
“So, I read Death in the Afternoon by Ernest Hemingway in Spanish.”
“How was it?”
“Interesting. Hemingway loves bullfighting”
“What’d you learn?”
“It’d take me awhile to tell you all of it, but I’ll summarize. Basically, bullfighting tests the bravery of the bull and the bullfighters. It’s an art form, and the matador and the rest of his cuadrilla are the artists.”
“So kind of like ballet?”
“Well, yeah I guess in a sense. It is perceived as an art form. The crowd, the judges, the matadors, become a spectacle of admiration and of passion much like works of arts.”
“How does it work?”
“The bullfight has three parts with different people participating in each. In the first part called Suerte de Varas, Luck of the Spear, a man on horseback spears the bull. In the second part, guys on foot, called banderilleros, run out looking like Frankenstein with their arms out straight, holding banderillas, or little spears wrapped in confetti, and try to stab the bull. Then the cape and matador come out and kill the bull. It’s pretty interesting, I watched some fights on YouTube and visited a ring in Spain, but I still need to see one.”
“Do you think it’s animal abuse?”
“That’s a huge topic of debate, that’s why I read the book, I wanted to get a better understanding of the subject so I could see both sides. I wouldn’t call a Spaniard wrong for liking it, nor would I protest against it. It’s culture, it’s art. So I respect it, but I wouldn’t want to be the bull.”
- Don't Give Up
- Stay Determined
- Don't overdo it
- Stay Connected
- Make connections
Learn Languages Fast!
Yeah, If you are a two year old with septilingual parents. Good things take time and like any relationship stuff grows and develops. It fluxes it has it's struggles but it also has it's rewards. You may have a terrible time pronouncing a word or rolling your Rs, but it is an incredible experience the first time you have an actual conversation with someone. That first conversation is like scoring a goal, or finding a good YouTube Video. It's an awesome feeling. So grab a textbook, a teacher, or tutor and experience it.
Suerte - Luck
So I guess it is luck I fell in love, but it is so worth it. The great thing is she will never be unfaithful, there will always be more to her than meets the eye. If you have ever read anything interesting in one language, then imagine the possibilities of opening up that same experience multiplied, in a new language. The door just keeps opening itself wider and wider, it's amazing and it's wonderful. So I hope you have suerte, I hope you have luck to find that passion that drives you, that makes you tick, that keeps you going because it is worth it. Trust me.
Another Really Good Reason
Federico García Lorca
La tarde equivocada
se vistió de frío.
Detrás de los cristales,
turbios, todos los niños,
ven convertirse en pájaros
un árbol amarillo.
La tarde está tendida
a lo largo del río.
Y un rubor de manzana
tiembla en los tejadillos.