Saturday, February 03, 2007

Mancos, Tuertos, and My Weekend Strike

My Spanish is improving at an infinitesimally slow pace. The process of learning a language in my old age has made me appreciate the importance of words in a whole new light. I never realized how important it is to my well-being to have just the right word to express my idea or feeling at any particular time. The converse, of course, is the frustration of not having the right word, and having to choose the next best available choice, which is often does not convey anywhere near the idea I want to express. What´s the point of talking at all?

But, as I get better, I am starting to think that Spanish is a better language than English. I´m no linguist, obviously, but Spanish seems to be more organized, for one, with more rules and less randomness than English. You can make verbs from the nouns, and nouns from the verbs. You can increase and decrease the size of things simply by tacking on an ito or issimo to the end of your adjective. And there are many important words that have no English translation. For example:

Manco- A person with one arm
Tuerto-- A person with one eye
Cojo-- A person with one leg
Also, Madrugar (to get up at the crack of dawn), is a handy word for an unpleasant concept.

Despite the above advantages, it has been hard to live in a world where I don´t have the slang I need and I can´t throw around bad grammar just for fun, like I do in English. I tire of sounding stupid and being misunderstood. I am on strike this weekend, actually. No more Spanish for me until Monday. I need my rest, as I had to madrugar today to round at the hospital. There is a tuerto on my service who needed some attention.

2 comments:

erikamax said...

Nelli
I miss you more than you know..

Anonymous said...

same here