Saturday, July 4, 2009

Lost in Expression

третья Июля, Две тысячa девятый год

Stephanie has brought up a very good point about yours truly. I predominately speak in expressions and I feel sorry for the Moldovan that tries to communicate with me with the intention of learning something about English. I would like to rest assured that my words are pure poetry, but undoubtedly I will fill their heads to the brim with nothing but colloquialisms from my adolescence and college years. For instance I recent spread the saying “Up shit creek with a terd for a paddle” and to be honest I don’t think I helped anyone with that. Except of course if you count myself. This brings up a broader point about the seemingly insurmountable goal of learning one of the hardest languages in the world. After two years here I will definitely understand the gist of what people are saying although there will be the “Aaron’s” of the world that I simply will respond to by saying “wtf does that mean?”

I recently found out that the popular INXS song “Hungry like a wolf” is a quite popular saying here. I’m assuming that that particular song was about sex or lust in English, although here, you definitely use the phrase in the context of food alone. Another similar Russian saying related to food is “you will lick your fingers” obviously a very close relative of “finger-lickin’ good”—although it is not quite the same without the southern drawl.


  1. Hi Aaron,

    I was a PCV in Moldova from 2004-2006. I did agribusiness development with Agroinform in Soldanesti and really loved my service and the experiences I had in Moldova.

    Good luck on the site placement. For many PCVs the site can make or break their assignments.

    My unsolicited advice to you is to meet as many business and community leaders as fast as you can when you get to your site. These are the people with the resources and will to change things for the better.

    Best of luck u udachii.


  2. OMG Aaron, every time I hear that Ween song I think of you (even more so now).

    I met a man from Ukraine who used the expression "I'm alive" when I asked how he was doing. I thought he meant he was just barely getting by, but he explained that it means you are doing great, as in "I'M ALIVE!!! YEAH!". Translated expressions are a funny thing...

    Lots of love,
    Lara and Co.

  3. Just to keep the facts straight, "Hungry like the Wolf" is a Duran Duran song, not INXS. It's understandable that you would make that mistake since you were probably two years old when that song came out... :)

    Love you buddy,