When you are learning a new language, you will make very funny mistakes without realizing it. If you’re lucky, the mistakes are just *cute*; they will earn you a patronizing pat on the head and nothing more. Sometimes, the mistakes are really embarrassing (like many of my peers in high school Spanish who thought ‘Estoy … Continue reading When Czech Language is Accidentally Sexual
As I have learned in the last few years, Central/East Europeans and Americans have completely different ways of expressing their enthusiasm. Here’s a helpful chart! It’s obviously exaggerating, but stereotypes can be true in a general sense. I’ve witnessed the “enthusiasm disparity” personally to some degree about Czechs, Germans, Poles, Slovaks, Hungarians, Croats and Ukrainians, … Continue reading Are You Sure It’s Only OK? (+Fizzy wine season in CZ!)
Reverse Culture Shock (from the Chlohemian side): FOOD a) I remember first landing in CZ and trying to get acclimated to my new life in my new apartment. I remember hating the taste of the water – Czech water is very hard and after a little while all hot water kettles will build up white … Continue reading First Impressions of the USA
While entering the woods behind the Clark Institute in Williamstown, Massachusetts, an interesting thing happened. Ondra and I have talked a lot about cultural differences since we’ve been in the States – he finally visiting my *motherland* after I’ve spent three years in his, but this conversation had a slightly uncomfortable feel. “So American,” I … Continue reading Defending Your Culture + the Clark Art Institute
This is a post I wrote THREE YEARS AGO! I found it hiding in my drafts section. A lot of these things I’ve now gotten used to completely (and have written about in other places – for example, language, food, drinking, slippers, and living in a small town, plus Czech-merican cultural differences 1 and 2) – … Continue reading Time Travel Wednesday: Culture Shock?
When I was in middle school, the Blue Collar Comedy Tour was a really popular comedy troupe among my friends. BCCT was a group of four Southern comedians, the most famous of which is probably Jeff Foxworthy (in both these pictures), who started the infamous series of jokes that always ended, “…you might be a … Continue reading You’ve Lived Abroad Too Long When…
Czech – like English, and I’m sure like many other languages – has some very nice phrases for referring to cultural oddities. Some Czechspressions, for example: “It’s a Spanish village to me” (Je to pro mne španĕlská vesnice) = “It’s all Greek to me” = I don’t understand it even a bit. (They would also … Continue reading Do you have an American smile?