Thursday, September 1, 2011

Potpourri #1

As I wander around the Chilean countryside, often I'll see things that are interesting in of themselves, but not really enough to them to warrant a full entry.  Thus, I present you with the probably-recurring "Potpourri" series.  I'm sure you'll get the hang as we start along!

-In my neck of the woods, and at work now, I often see other people who are blatantly not Chilean.  We often have extended eye contact, or even a knowing nod to each other.  I imagine this is what it's like for brown people in most of the Midwest, or black people in Boston.
However, there is one distinct difference in this series of events for us, and this is when it's time for the verbal acknowledgement of each other.  After the nod, we really have only two choices:  we can try for the American "Hi" or "Hey", or the Chilean "Hola", or "Como estai?"  I've done this now at least 15 times, and no matter what I choose between American or Chilean, the other person ALWAYS PICKS THE OTHER.  If I say "Hi", they say "como estai?"  If I say "Hola", they say "hey man", without fail.  Honestly, I'm at least 0 for 15 with this situation.  Let's get it together, white people.

- There are wild dogs running around everywhere in Chile, and none of them are neutered.  Even the pet dogs still retain their reproductive organs - I don't think I've seen a neutered one yet.  It's a little weird, even though it's the default.  Also, there is dog shit everywhere.  You need to keep your eyes towards the ground at all times, otherwise you'll be scraping the bottom of both your shoes, guaranteed.

- Down here, everything is on military time (24 hour clock).  I can appreciate that, it makes a lot of sense from a scheduling standpoint, and it's an overall more accurate depiction of what time it is in a day.  I only wish that I could force my brain to understand it.  Every time I see "20:00", I think 10:00 pm.  It makes things difficult, because somebody will say "Let's meet at the beer hall at 21:30" to me, and I'll be like "Jesus, that late?  Que onda weon?"  And then I'll realize that he means 9:30 pm.  Pie, meet boca.

-This is a shot of my walk home from the metro:

Not bad right?  Also, you just stepped in dog shit.

- I can tell that the pollution is a little worse down here than the states, because my nostrils burn a little bit after a run, and then my boogers are darker.

- I've noticed that with the natives, they have slightly more tension in their lower jaw, just above the sides of the chin.  I think these are the different muscles built up when one speaks only Spanish, using the rolled Rs, identical B and Vs, and the other unique aspects of the spanish language.

- I realize I'm immature, but when you have pictures like this in your textbook, how does nobody say anything?
In what chat room is a 22 year old white boy chatting up a 45 year old black guy who "feels about 25"?

Potpourri out.

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