...except for me and my monkey! "Everything we see hides another thing. We always want to see what is hidden by what we see." -Rene Magritte

Friday, September 30, 2005

How do you say ´´Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles´´ in Spanish?

The other day I went to the library in Gimpert, one of the main academic buildings, to meet with Liza and Carina, two of my Modernidad y Problemas Sociales group members. (Incidentally, ´´Gimpert´´ is very difficult to pronounce, because it´s not a Spanish name. All the Chileans have, like, agreed on some neo-French/Spanish/whatever pronounciation, and I´m never sure if I´m saying it right. Really, that goes for any word that comes from a non-Spanish language, including English words, such as ´´top,´´ ´´feeling,´´ and ´´living.´´) Anyways, it soon became clear that no work was going to get done, so we started talking about TV, particularly the cartoon shows (monitos,, or ´´little monkeys,´´ as they´re called in Chile) we watched as kids. I love, but love, early/mid nineties pop culture nostalgia (see the discussion going on in the comments section of the last entry), so I was having a blast until they asked me what kinds of shows I watched in the US. The first one that popped into my head was Duck Tales (Flying in our aer-o-plane! Here in! Duckburg!) but the only translation I would offer up was a lame Historias de Patos. Yeah, so that one got lost in translation. But I did learn that the Smurphs were called Los pitufos in Chile, and that the CareBears were Los cariñositos, (a conglomeration of the words for ´´affectionate´´ and ´´little bears´´) if I understood Carina correctly. Liza translated My Little Pony as Pequeño pony, but I think that was more just her saying it in Spanglish so I could understand it it. I didn´t even try to translate the Popples (Pop pop pop Popples!), which sound bizarre even in English. And in Spanish, SpongeBob SquarePants has been reduced to a simple, but syllabically equal, Bob esponja. That one´s not so much from our childhoods, though.

Mey and Lisu watch a ton of monitos, mostly on Discovery Kids, a North American cable channel that´s dubbed in Spanish. I always seem to be eating breakfast while Mey´s watching Los Hermanos Koala, a Claymation-type show about two koala brothers who help other animals in the Australian outback, or something like that. The most memorable part of the show for me is the theme song, which is incredibly catchy, and the end song about how you should always try to help people. The koala brothers and company do a dance, and it includes spirit fingers. It´s priceless.

Memorable quotes:

Lisu, very matter-of-factly: ´´All gringas have blond hair.´´

Alejandro, a guy in my Teología Política class: ´´In the US, you study Ciencias Religiosas at a secular university? Isn´t that like buying an egg without the yolk?´´

Me: ´´Hi Ronald!´´
Ronald: ´´Hi Jessica! You know we have to read the Apostolic Exhoration of His Holiness Paul VI for a test next week, right?´´
Me: ´´Wait. What?

Street vendor from whom I bought the cookies featured in the last entry: ´´You don´t look like you´re from Valparaíso. Where are you from?´´
Me: ´´I´m from the United States.´´
Street vendor: ´´Yeah, but which state? There are forty-eight of them, you know.´´
Me: ´´Actually, there are fifty.´´
Street vendor: ´´Yeah, but only forty-eight in the Federation. I watch a lot of TV, so that´s how I know this stuff.´´