Overview of Life

I have been shamefully neglectful of this blog of late. For a brief overview of the past week-ish:

  • Church Sunday + meal after church = finally the kind of political interest I had been waiting for all week. Only nearly nobody was excited that Obama had been elected, given my church's extremely evangelical tendencies and the number of conservative American ex-pats it attracts. And during a crowded/noisy lunch with far too many people to have a real discussion is not the time to be practically alone in one's political/social convictions, especially if one lacks the necessary vocabulary to explain them adequately. And if one is being lectured to more than discussed with by overconfident French people. It was not ideal. Also, the French have the somewhat unfounded idea that they are not at all racist merely because they don't have the same history of slavery as America. In fact, France doesn't seem to be terribly diverse, and the Asians/Maghrebins/other people belonging to minorities I talked to in my church disagree quite strongly. So I did not appreciate being lectured about how the French are so open-minded in comparison to Americans when, excuse me, who just elected a black president?
  • For your general-interest (well, if your general interests comprehend linguistics) reading: Verlan, a French slang formed by inverting words. It's pretty cool and basically American English sucks because we don't have any linguistically interesting argots that anyone actually uses. Also interesting: Louchébem, which is remarkably similar to Pig Latin, and Javanais, which is sort of like a language game in English whose infix I can't actually remember. (For all three articles, if you read French, check out the French versions - they're more complete.)
  • Quote of the evening from dinner after yesterday's Bible study, while trying to explain Thanksgiving: "So it's kind of like a Bar Mitzvah?"
  • This weekend: retreat with aforementioned Bible study group, at some church in Orléans, with all the other GBUs (Groupes bibliques universitaires) in the region. Which should be very fun, even though it will take three and a half hours to get there by car because we'll be taking the routes nationales, because apparently all the actually efficient highways are really expensive toll roads. Hurrah.