Recently in IFG we looked at relationships and communication—the relationships we’ve established and grown here in Spain, the relationships established in our other localities that we’ve maintained here, how they’ve been changing, and how we work to balance them all.
“Once, in a restaurant in Italy with my family, I occasioned enormous merriment, as a nineteenth-century humorist would have put it, by confusing two Italian words. I thought I had, very suavely, ordered for dessert fragoline—those lovely little wild strawberries. Instead, I seem to have asked forfagiolini—green beans. The waiter ceremoniously brought me a plate of green beans with my coffee, along with the flan and the gelato for the kids. The significant insight the mistake provided—arriving mere microseconds after the laughter of those kids, who for some reason still bring up the occasion, often—was about the arbitrary nature of language: the single “r” rolled right makes one a master of the trattoria, an “r” unrolled the family fool. Although speaking feels as natural as breathing, the truth is that the words we use are strange, abstract symbols, at least as remote from their objects as Egyptian hieroglyphs are from theirs, and as quietly treacherous as Egyptian tombs.”
“Americans have a reputation for being insular and unadventurous when it comes to learning about the rest of the world. This is partly justified: Only 38% of Americans even have passports, and a mere 3.5% of them travel overseas every year. But according to a new study, Americans might actually be more cosmopolitan than we think.”
“People often ask me what they can do to be more successful.
I say disconnect. Even if just for a few hours. Unplug. Turn off your phone and wifi. Focus. Write. Practice. Create.
That’s what’s rare and valuable these days.
You get no competitive edge from consuming the same stuff everyone else is consuming. But it’s rare to focus. And it gives such better rewards.”
“What does it take to say a simple hello to a stranger you pass on the street? How might that interaction continue? What are the places in which you are more likely to interact with people you don’t know? How do you get out of a conversation? These sound like easy questions. They are not.”
How are your relationships changing? How have you been dealing with these changes?
Becoming a Local
Poetry Slam Madrid
Intruso Bar. c/ Augusto Figueroa 3.
First Wednesday of each month
Poetry Jam Session
Every Wednesday at 21:00
Grupo de Pensamiento y acción colectiva
Every Saturday at 18:30
Tuesdays-Sundays 13:00-16:00 & 20:00-21:00
Friday Language Exchange
Inpass Café, Calle Tres Cruces 8 (close to metro Gran Vía)
Fridays at 22:00