Sunday, September 29, 2013

On Assimilating in Argentina, Point 006.

006. When speaking to Argentines, use el voseo, not el tuteo.

What sets the people of Argentina apart, in a language context, from the rest of Latin America (save Uruguay and a few other South American countries) is el voseo - a verb conjugation unique to these select countries.

For a quick explanation:

Spanish (el tuteo)

Spanish (el voseo)

In basic Spanish courses in the States, we learn el tuteo - mostly because it is the most widely used.
EX: Where are you from?
     (el tuteo): ¿De dónde eres?
     (el voseo): ¿De dónde sos?

The difference between el tuteo and el voseo shows up every time you address someone directly, which is fairly confusing when first attempting to speak like the locals. Pero no pasa nada, te acostumbrás (Don't worry, you get used to it)! I'll keep this brief introduction as-is and leave it to you to visit Argentina to learn the rest! ;)

Finalmente, from my dear roommate, who has encouraging me from the beginning to use el voseo and drop my tuteo ways, a little song to go along with the lesson.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

BA Snapshot Series // 002

From the 30th of June to the 16th of September, a polka-dotted craze exploded in the art scene of Buenos Aires. It all started here:
The MoMA of Suramerica
The exhibition that gave spectators a desire to affix polka-dot stickers to any and every conceivable place...

Yayoi Kusama, "Infinite Obsession"
The artist herself.
Kusama is a schizophrenic, and in the interview from which this shot was taken, she explains that her art provides her an outlet and helps her deal with - and work out - her condition.
At the forefront of the showcase were her latest works, the material that drew enormous crowds every day throughout the months-long exhibition.

Moving through the exhibition, her older works appear.

"Macaroni Suitcase"

And then a mirror-walled room filled with plush, polka-dotted pups, multiplied by a thousand from the reflections.
...And another room, pitch-black save for the slow pulsing of a billion multi-colored lights hanging from the ceiling. The lights were reflected in mirrors that lined the walls and also by pools of water that made an isthmus of the walkway.
Totally rad.

¡Hasta la próxima!

Saturday, September 7, 2013

BA Snapshot Series // 001

A live tango (music) performance!
Snapped at TangoBA Festival Mundial del Tango

And for a taste of classic tango, "Por una Cabeza" by the great Carlos Gardel:

Which also appears, accompanied by dance, (albeit Hollywood-ized; real porteño tango looks quite a bit different *Source: culture of tango professor*), in a scene of Scent of a Woman (a can't-miss, movie, by the way; one of my all-time favorites, with Pacino):

¡Que disfruten!

Friday, September 6, 2013

Two Good Luck Ducks

My 22nd birthday came and went just about as fast as all the other whirlwind days here do, but brought with it a definite sense of change, a subtle hunch that some different inner gear has begun churning to bring some undiscovered bud to blossom. More than likely, these gears have been working all the time and the "one year older" marker drew my attention, encouraging a closer introspection and examination of how far I've come - not only in the time that I've been here in Buenos Aires, (a mere two months), but in these past four years that have made up my college career.

To anyone considering studying abroad,
be aware that the experience as a whole
is inevitably an intense exercise in
self-examination and forced progression.
That being said, that alone -
aside from any institutional education -
is reason for everyone to opt for it
if the opportunity presents itself.

My day was absolutely filled with love from the girls I live with in my residence. If you know anything about Latin American culture, you know they are an intimate bunch, sometimes overwhelmingly so - never a want for hugs and kisses on the cheek and "¿todo bien?" "How are you, have things been good?" An unfiltered intimacy. A warmth felt in the heart and not on the skin. For my birthday, "overwhelming" would be an apt description, but only in the most beautiful sense of the word. "Perfection" is truly what it was. And for all the perfection that was packed into yesterday, I am reminded of something one of my exchange amigas told me.

There is a little-known saying in Spain that the number 22 is symbolic for los dos patitos de la buena suerte - two good luck ducks - for the shape of the twos. 22. See the ducks?

I'm not one to believe in superstitions, but if the quality of my day yesterday has anything to do with the way this coming year is going to go, I might believe in the buena suerte of those two little patitos.

Or maybe I can take those two ducks and carry them with me for the rest of my life, through la buena suerte y la mala, and use them to change my viewpoint when I'm behind an immovable roadblock. Maybe the two little good luck ducks jumped into my boat on September 5th, 2013 to give me a way to steer around all the rocks and plow through all the algae of the river I'm voyaging.

I think so.