Wednesday, June 4, 2008

¿Qué pasa?

Just catching up since Sunday. Monday evening was the long-awaited "cena de bienvenido" (not a moment too soon, as this is my last week). There were many new students, including a big group from California, but none at the advanced level. Which means that it's back to one-on-one in my conversation classes with Manuel every day. Learning a lot, but I tend to be pretty exhausted by the time 3 o'clock rolls around. Yesterday evening I had a very nice dinner with Renee and her husband Steve, both from Huntsville. Renee was my housemate at Aurora's during my first week here, and Steve just joined her on Saturday, staying for the week. I give him major points for signing up for the beginners' class at the school for the week. Tonight is the regular Café Social, probably followed by drinking and debauching at the 'Bar Ocho', which has the distinct advantage of being only a block from the hotel, so that I can roll home easily.

On the cultural side of things, not all of one's choices can be successful. I walked out of "Sin Lugar para los Debiles" (No Country for Old Men) somewhere around the half-hour mark, just as Javier Bardem was racking up his 10th victim, with disturbing relish and no end in sight. On the literary side, Paul Auster's "New York Trilogy" (which I picked up second-hand last week when my craving for something to read in English became too great) was a major disappointment. More accurately, the first 'story' of the trilogy, "City of Glass" was such an irritatingly self-referential, hyper-cerebral, 'what a clever boy am I', piece of vacuous pomo garbage that I have sworn off this particular 'writer' for life....

The plain people of Ireland: What was that? You're reading porno now?
The management: No, idiots! Not 'porno' as in 'pornography'. 'Pomo' as in 'post-modern'.
The plain people of Ireland: Are you sure? Looks like porno to us.
The management: What we have here is a font kerning issue. Look it up.
The plain people of Ireland: 'keming' - what's 'keming'?
The management: Oh, never mind....

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