Three days ago, a movie called Amores Perros saved me from misery. Saturday found me with both a migraine and an eye infection, and my head was in such a state that it hurt to do anything but I knew I must resist another nap in order to feel better later. Amores Perros was my dinner buddy. It’s rated R, definitely not for the feeble-hearted, and charged with emotion.
The sign of a good show or movie is one that I’ll enjoy even while my head is trying to kill me. (Past enjoyments have been Pirates of the Caribbean, Argo, and the musical Wicked.) In the near future, I’d like to watch more films starring Emilio Echevarria because his character just sitting in a room were some of my favorite scenes.
It’s hard to believe the first week of FLOM has passed so quickly because I know the next three will whiz by like nothing happened. So far, I’ve enjoyed some movies, improved my German, and haven’t at all yearned to read something in English. (I am, of course, lying my ass off.) By the end of this week, honestly, English is annoying.
I told you before there was no way I could escape passing by my family while they were watching TV. This is still true. Leaving the room has never felt so pressing, but there’s an odd lure to what they watch. The English makes its way into my brain much more easily (especially during commercials), and it’s bothersome. The words are like flies collecting in my brain; I don’t want them, but when they get in there they won’t leave. When commercials come up on Hulu, they ruin the Korean mellow I had going. Speaking between family members, however, doesn’t bother me. Speech is less forced than entertainment and commercials.
Spanish commercials, however, are very interesting to me. One night, I watched Telemundo and found the commercials to be more interesting than the action drama programming. They’re exactly the same. Same script, exact same commercial, except the voice-over happens to be in another language and the actors look more, how should I say, Hispanic? It’s surreal in a cool way. I even learned a phrase: más rápidas. (I had to look up the accent marks.)
I haven’t missed not being able to see the world news. Not even the Stewbert (Stewart/Colbert) hour Mondays through Thursdays. When I return from this challenge, though, I might have to make myself go insane with a comedy-news binge.
Confusing other languages with English has happened several times. At the library, passing words are near whispers, and the past week I’ve been confusing them for Spanish or German. My inner monologue has a German accent half the time, but that may be partially due to the fact that “Willkommen” from Cabaret has been stuck in my head since early September. (“Oh, Frenchie, would you stop zat?”)
Is it confession time yet? *
Yes, fine, I admit there was one (or two) time I got trapped on Facebook reading some posts and linked articles. The lesson: don’t go on Facebook. Ever. And I concluded Zerg levels of Starcraft aren’t exactly English. (Having “Spawn more Overlords!” shouted at you doesn’t count.) The good news, though, is that I haven’t picked up anything from the library while shelving. During breaks at work, I’ve done language flashcards and even started some exercises in a thick German language text.
The K-drama Big is still great. I learned the Korean word for “these/those” but promptly forgot it because I’m not quite actively learning the language. Only passively (through TV shows).
Although I don’t believe one can learn a language from watching shows and movies in one’s target language, it is a good reminder of the things you already know. During Amores Perros, I found out I do, indeed, remember the word for ‘milk’ in the line “Rum, agua, o leche?” You know what else? I just learned the Spanish word for ‘or’ right there. Right there! Awesome.
Since listening to some German learning audio, Scrubs has become a little more familiar in this new translation. By the third episode, I began to simply listen rather than watch, and was able to pick out some of my favorite jokes. I even learned a word from one such joke: ‘eklig’ means ‘disgusting.’ If I may quote the original without referencing the script:
Turk: The human body is so disgusting!
Turk: Not yours, sir; yours is beautiful.
Don’t even bother looking for it in Youtube’s version of German subtitles; they aren’t quite right.
I’m going to post this particular episode here. Have some fun and look for the following quotes I’m proud to say I understand.
Nicht bewegen. = Don’t move. (around 10:30)
Was? Du liebst wer? = What? You love who? (around 10:45)
Du bist ein schlechter Mensch. = You’re a bad person. (last scene)
Don’t even try to understand Cox. If you thought Coxy spoke too quickly in the original, your brain might explode in German.
While I’m going Youtube happy, have a French dub and translation of “I See The Light” from Tangled. If the English version makes you cry, fetch a whole box of tissues for this one.
I’ll return with Week 2’s update next Monday. Meantime, I shouldn’t neglect fellow friends here on WordPress. They work hard on their posts, too. Later tonight, it’s time for a little Fellini film called Amarcord.
The week of German, Spanish, and Korean may soon morph into a sampling of something else.
* At first publication of this post, I neglected to mention how I’d been working on a novel. Doing so during this challenge gives me a more intimate connection with my fiction writing. I have also updated my little Once Upon A Time fan comic, but only with something I made before this challenge began because I have sweet obligations. So there.