Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Ummmm, what did you say?

Mostly reading two books these days, and they are kind of messing with my head...I am reading another book by Haruki Murakami, in Catalan. The English title is "South of the Border, West of the Sun". I am simultaneously reading "The Brief Wonderous Life of Oscar Wao" by Junot Díaz which occurs primarily in Spanish, in that the main characters are from the Dominican Republic, and would be speaking Spanish, but it is written in English, but he leaves a whole lot of Spanish slang and jargon in - can I just say that Murakami's site is playing the coolest music right now? I LOVE this music....wonder where I could get me some.

Do you understand a word I am saying?

I think that is my problem, I have Japanese characters speaking Catalan and Dominican characters in English and a glossing of Spanish...getting foggy in here now ladies and gentlemen.

Did I ever mention the time I found myself, a Canadian, listening to a German playing Scotish bagpipes in a kilt on the end of a pier in a small town in Greece? It was a strange moment.

Then there are the times at work where we have weird three way conversations. I can manage in English and Catalan, another woman in Spanish and English and several women in Catalan or Spanish. Whatever language we work in, someone doesn't really understand what is going on.

*whoa Nelly*

Tower of Babel here or what?

Oh my aching mind.

9 comments:

The Bodhi Chicklet said...

That hurts my head too. I'd love to read something of Murakami. What would you suggest is his best, that you've read so far?

J.G. said...

My sympathies to you, with an unlucky language star shining on you these days. First the gibberish of that horrible user's manual, and now this!

C.S. said...

What's your impression of Oscar Wao? Considering it won the Pulitzer, it left me disappointed and I haven't recommended it to anyone. But I will say I kind of liked the sprinkling of Spanish. It was basic enough that even I, a beginning student, could make it out.

Anonymous said...

Why is your mind aching?
Could it be that you've wanted too much too fast?
I'd say your mind's moving and growing and your mental universe is expanding IN DIRECTIONS YOU'VE NEVER EXPLORED SO EXTENSIVELY BEFORE.
And all because you're discovering the awesome enthralling wonder of knowing several languages and using them! CONGRATS! GM

Beth said...

Your mind may be aching but you're staving off a future decline in mental acuity with these constant challenges.
(I'm in awe.)

Trish said...

Yikes - sounds like your brain is training for the olympics! lol

Diane Mandy said...

Why do I get the feeling you've got hundreds of stories your keeping from us?

oreneta said...

Bhodi, I finished Sputnik my Love, and loved it...that said it is a fairly lonely book...I am excited that I can read it which offsets the depressing nature of it...but I liked that one a lot.

JG, that manual was the worst, at least the rest of this has meaning hiding in there somewhere...I just have to unearth it.

CS, Oscar Wao...I got off to a slow and unenthusiastic start honestly, and then it picked up with the mother's story in the DR, now I have bogged WAY down though and I am starting to skim, it is all so DREARY. Honestly...I kind of like the style, he really has the narrators voice well done, and I like the disjointed nature of the narrative, it is how families work jumping in and out of each other's heads...but there is something a little unsettling and malgustos about his relish in describing the abuse and denigration of the female and nerdy characters (basically everyone) and the narrator's sense of superiority...he is not a sympathetic narrator, there is a little too much joy in the retelling. That leaves me a little....well, it leaves a bad taste....

Not a strong recommendation. An interesting book in a way...but...I'm skimming now, and may skip to the end, though it is tricky to do with this narrative style, where exactly is the bit of end I want?

GM, good perspective, and quite right...though sometimes it still is kind of achey in here.

Beth, you don't know how often I remind myself of that. Really, you don't know.

Trish...feels that way...

Diane, don't we all?

sirdar said...

You have to give yourself a lot of credit here. There isn't very many who can juggle three languages all at the same time and still understand what each other wants. You've probably come a long way from when you first moved to Spain.