Friday, March 27, 2009

My progress with the Czech language

WHAT PROGRESS?????? - hahaha

No seriously it's taking a very long time but it is amazing how I gradually find myself understanding more than the ZERO I previously understood and am slowly starting to be able to have conversations with people. Sure, I am not solving the world’s problems or discussing the pros and cons of the communist system but I am starting to be able to converse about small matters. On top of this my cases and tenses are all wrong and I am referring to men as women and women as men but these are small inconsequential nuances (well at least until I do it to a 150kg strongman) and people can understand what I am saying despite these cock ups.

Sure sometimes I get it wrong and the entire discussion dies or what I say has a totally different meaning to what I expected but 'shit happens'. E.g.: Turat and Turak sound the same but one means 'to urinate' and the other means 'man cxxx' (the most offensive word you can say in the Czech language, obviously the masculine version). I will not tell you which is which as it has caused me some difficulty in the past.

The most important tool to conversing in a different language is called ALCOHOL. I had never had a conversation with Michaela's dad but that all changed last weekend at the mother-in-laws b'day with the help of 1L of Czech rum. He and I were in the kitchen by ourselves and when he started talking to me. I listened and then started laughing at all the right places (he told me this was the first time in 40 year he had drunk rum because of a bad experience yada yada yada). Michaela came rushing in to see if I needed help but I told her what I understood and she asked her dad and I was 100% right (praise alcohol). She then left us alone and we continued our 'man chat' LOL.
Me and the father in law

Me and the father in law and the brother in law

Drunk father in law and drunk grand father in law

At the end of the night, after my pregnant wife and DRUNKEN father in law had passed out and the other 10 guests had left I was alone with the mother in law. We stayed up till almost 3am in the morning chatting about small stuff but the next day Michaela reported that my language abilities appeared to have developed significantly. I answered certainly not without the assistance of alcohol. The good news is that the 1/2 litre of rum seemed to hit the father in law significantly more then me. He was in a bad way, but perhaps I have more practice :D

The evidence the next morning

Anyway I am now having lessons and I think they are working (slowly) in helping me understand stuff.

Having said all of the above it is nice to sometimes not know what is going on. For instance when the mother in law is nagging Michaela or my father in law sometimes ignorance is bliss

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Really pissed off

Well after doing heaps of research about the fishing opportunities in the Czech Republic I thought I had my game plan sussed for the up coming summer that was until I saw the price. To get the license it costs $100 bucks for one year which I thought was a bit steep ($75 for 3 years in NSW in Australia) but then for me to get a permit to fish in specific lakes I need to cough up another $200 bucks per lake (or something stupid like that)

I figure this Czech fishing can go and 'blow it out its arse'. WHAT A RIP OFF. I asked a colleague who I was going to fish with about the price and he said it’s because your allowed to keep 30kg of CRAP (oops I mean Carp) a year.

So my issues are
1. $100 for a license for one year
2. $200 bucks to fish in the pond/lake for 1 year (well really 6 mths as its FRIKKEN frozen for the other 6 mths)
3. They tell me I can only keep 30kg a year - Who the PHUQ would want to eat carp any way
4. There is no discount if you only want to C&R (catch and release)

So considering the difficulty and price ($300 is about 70% of annual pre tax wage hahaha) I reckon I might politely pass on the Czech fishing scene and just keep reading every report I can from my kayak fishing friends in Australia where they can at least catch a fish that has a meat : mud ratio better the 1:1

I am soooooo MAAAAAAAAAD.

Oh and in answer to the question "Who the PHUQ would want to eat carp anyway?” The answer everyone as the bloody stuff is sold in the supermarkets everywhere. Whole Carp, Carp chunks and Carp fillets (there’s an oxymoron for you).

I am sure I will calm down but right now I am really annoyed and having fishing withdrawal symptoms (sigh)

Until next time


Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Czech Radio

Hey guys

I encountered something the other day that had me really quite amused. There is a lot of english music played over here which makes sense but the language barrier means there are some subtle differences. For instance swear words are not 'BLEEPED OUT' like they are in Australia on commercial radio. This means that songs with the 'F' and 'C' words are played in their ENTIRITY.
I encountered this when i was driving the car and a song by 'The Darkness' starts playing and then all of a sudden the chorus starts 'Get your hands off of my woman, mother f***er'. I nearly crashed the car i was laughing so hard. So i went to work to chat about it to the other aussies. One bloke, Justin who has a French wife and young son, said they were in a toy store when a song by Eamon came on. the chorus for this song goes like this

F*** what I said it dont mean shit now
F*** the presents might as well throw em out
F*** all those kisses, they didn't mean jack
F*** you, you hoe, I dont want you back

He was amazed and turned to his wife and expressed his comcern about this song being played in a toy store only for his wife to turn around as say 'I love this song' as she was singing along with their child in his pram LOL

Arh ignorance if bliss

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

A change of perspectives and attitude

When I was younger, single and 6ft tall 'n' bullet proof I used to quite enjoy adrenalin scenarios but its amazing how perspectives and attitudes can change after a significant event.

The significant moment responsible for the change was when my lovely wife told me we were expecting our first child (still not sure how it happened hahahaha). Well to say a lot of things changed would be an understatement and my reaction to certain scenarios has changed with this news.

For instance the other night we went to dinner and caught a movie but on the way home 2 spaced out kids (maybe 18 years old) thought it would be a good idea to prepare their heroin fix on the crowded metro. SERIOUSLY WTF!!!!! Anyway the point is my normal reaction would have been to give them a mouth full of expletives. I was thinking something like "GET THE F*** OFF THIS TRAIN". But instead I grabbed my pregnant wife and moved her further up the carriage away from these 2 idiots. I wasn't the only person to see the syringe; spoon and cigarette lighter come out either as there was a small exodus towards the front.

The other massive area of change is PEDESTRIAN CROSSINGS! I used to love to just walk out and watch the approaching car slam on its brakes when the driver finally realised there was a pedestrian there always thinking I’d be fast enough to avoid the car. My attitude has changed there as well and I now wait either for no cars or for the approaching car to see me and stop. The fact that pedestrian crossing are nearly impossible to see in this country and that a hard braking car and ICE is not a recipe for rapid deceleration MAY have helped but I am blaming it on the expected little one.

No pictures this time as I didn't think the heroin junkies would like some stranger filming there illegal activity (even more evidence of my changing attitude :D)