Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Seville, 40 years after Stonewall

The giant Rainbow Flag erected by Seville's Town Hall at the Glorieta Olímpica, by the Alamillo bridge, to celebrate Gay Pride Week 2009 and commemorate the 40th anniversary of the Stonewall riots, which marked the start of the gay civil rights movement both in the US and around the world.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

The Visitor_film

The Visitor is a heartfelt, humanistic drama that deftly explores identity, immigration, and other major post-9/11 issues.

Synopsis: In a world of six billion people, it only takes one to change your life. In actor and filmmaker Tom McCarthy’s follow-up to his award winning directorial debut The Station Agent, Richard Jenkins (Six Feet Under) stars as a disillusioned Connecticut economics professor whose life is transformed by a chance encounter in New York City.

Sixty-two-year-old Walter Vale (Jenkins) is sleepwalking through his life. Having lost his passion for teaching and writing, he fills the void by unsuccessfully trying to learn to play classical piano. When his college sends him to Manhattan to attend a conference, Walter is surprised to find a young couple has taken up residence in his apartment. Victims of a real estate scam, Tarek (Haaz Sleiman), a Syrian man, and Zainab (Danai Gurira), his Senegalese girlfriend, have nowhere else to go. In the first of a series of tests of the heart, Walter reluctantly allows the couple to stay with him.

Touched by his kindness, Tarek, a talented musician, insists on teaching the aging academic to play the African drum. The instrument’s exuberant rhythms revitalize Walter’s faltering spirit and open his eyes to a vibrant world of local jazz clubs and Central Park drum circles. As the friendship between the two men deepens, the differences in culture, age and temperament fall away.

After being stopped by police in the subway, Tarek is arrested as an undocumented citizen and held for deportation. As his situation turns desperate, Walter finds himself compelled to help his new friend with a passion he thought he had long ago lost. When Tarek’s beautiful mother Mouna (Hiam Abbass) arrives unexpectedly in search of her son, the professor’s personal commitment develops into an unlikely romance.

And it’s through these new found connections with these virtual strangers that Walter is awakened to a new world and a new life.

Friday, June 05, 2009

Home_the trailer

Home, a documentary by Yann Arthus-Bertrand, renowned photographer of "Earth From Above" fame, will air this Friday on the National Geographic Channel at 9 p.m. Check out the High Definition trailer on YouTube! It is awesome!

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

The Way We Are :)


La siguiente nota se distribuyó en las oficinas gubernamentales con idea es instar a los componentes hispanos de cada equipo a comportarse adecuadamente en un ambiente multicultural, sobre todo en lo que respecta al uso adecuado del lenguaje.

FROM: GROUP OFFICES BRUSSELS
TO: ALL SPANISH STAFF
SUBJECT: IMPROPER LANGUAGE USAGE


It's been brought to our attention by several officials visiting our establishments that offensive language is commonly used by our Spanish staff. Such behaviour, in addition to violating our group's policy, is highly unprofessional, and offensive to both visitors and the proper staff. Therefore, it is requested to our Spanish staff to adhere immediately to the following rules:

1. Foreign colleagues or visitors should not be referred to as "otro guiri de mierda" or "menudo gilipollas el noruego ese".

2. Words like "coño", "hostia", and other such expressions will not be used for emphasis, no matter how heated the discussion.

3. You will not say "la ha cagao" when someone makes a mistake, or "la está cagando" if you see somebody being reprimanded, or "vaya cagada" when a major mistake has been made. All direct or derived forms of the verb "cagar" are inappropriate in our environment.

4. No Project Manager, Section, Head or Administration Chief, will be referred to, under any circumstances, as "el hijo la gran puta" or "el muy cabrón", or even "el comemierda ese".

5. Lack of determination will not be referred as to "falta de huevos" or "mariconería", nor will persons with a lack of initiative be referred to as "capullo" or "acojonao".

6. Usual and/or creative ideas shall not be referred to as "pajas mentales", in particular when they stem from your manager.

7. You will not say "cómo me jode este tío" or "me está tocando los cojones" if a person is persistent, or "está bien jodido" or "se lo van a follar" if a colleague is going through a difficult situation. Furthermore, when matters become complicated the words "vaya jodienda" should not be used.

8. When asking someone to leave you alone, you must not say "vete a la mierda", nor should you ever substitute the most educated 'may I help you?' with "y ahora ¿qué coño quieres?"

9. If things get tough, an acceptable expression such as 'we are going through a difficult time' should be used, rather than "esto está jodido" or "nos van a follar a todos". Additionally if you make a mistake, just say so and do not say "¡qué putada!" or any expression composed with the root "puta".

10. No salary increase shall never be referred as "subida de mierda".

11. Last but not least, after reading this note please do not say "me voy a limpiar el culo con ella" or "me la paso por el forro de los cojones". Just keep it clean and odourless and dispose of it properly.

P.S. IF THIS NOTE DOES NOT ACHIEVE ITS GOAL TO IMPROVE THE SPANISH STAFF'S LANGUAGE, IT CAN BE USED AS A SPANISH LANGUAGE COURSE FOR FOREIGNERS.

+ "Cracking up" is "partirse o descojonarse de risa" in English! There´s a new phrasal verb for you :)