Sunday, December 26, 2010

Suck Our Dirty Feet Brazil

While reading a fellow blogger's post, I discovered that on the Stats page, us bloggers can see what type of keywords our readers type in to get to our blogs. I was intrigued by this, and decided to check out my list of reader's keywords.

Unsurprisingly, my blog is very popular for those looking for info on Albino Roaches. Although I didn't think it important before, I should probably clear up now that Albino Roaches (in the technical sense) do not exist. In reality, an "albino" roach is actually a normal roach that has recently molted its dark brown layer. Equally gross in my opinion.

What was a little surprising though, was that readers searching "suck our dirty feet 5brazil" are directed to my blog. Google has taken it upon themselves to make a mash-up of my completely PG blog posts, while manipulating them in a way to make my blog the first thing that comes up when "suck our dirty feet 5brazil" is typed into the search bar.

Check it out: "at a night club at 5 am, changed into our bathing suits....I should justify the dirty feet by saying I had spent all night...but it was important to Namo so I sucked it up."

Hmmm I'm going to keep an eye on this statistic...I don't know how proud I feel about "safadinha", "suck our dirty feet" and "albino roaches" being so closely related to my blog.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Where Am I?

Switching between two different countries can get a little confusing. Not only do you have to remember which language to speak, but you have to remember the different rules, social norms and appropriate style.
I've had a couple slip-ups since being home that can only be explained by the super-cool/douchey excuse "Sorry, I've been living abroad".

The first offence was taking a phone call while at a bar and stepping out with my drink. People were literally gawking at me as I absent-mindedly strolled around, chatting on the phone and sipping on my beer. A kind old gentlemen was nice enough to grumble as he walked by "damn kids, think they can drink anywhere these days"...oops!

A reoccurring problem I have is the hissing at people at the mall. You know, the Brazilian "ss-ss", short for "licensa" ('excuse me'). It's become such an ingrained habit that I just walk around the crowded shops ss-ssing anyone I brush up against. Turns out hissing works better than "excuse me" when you're in a hurry.

I just signed up for the gym here in my small town in southern California, and I have found myself stressing about my gym attire. I mean, I will surely leave the hoop earrings, swirly shorts, and tube socks in my suitcase, ready for the return trip to Brazil...but the push up sports bra may be a go.

Finally, possibly one of my biggest problems since returning to California is the cheek kiss. Yes, I accidentally kissed an old high school friend on the cheek (whom of which I probably have never even touched in the 10 years I have known him). I know that a hug is appropriate for old friends, but do we really just shake hands with people we are just meeting? It seems so formal and (dare I say it?) cold.

What do you guys and gals struggle adapting back to when you travel home for the holidays?

Friday, December 17, 2010

Is That Really Necessary?

When it comes to job creation, you have really got to give it up to Brazil. I mean, people get seriously creative down there (how depressing, I have to say "there" now...). There are the people who weave through traffic like its nothing, juggling or selling sodas to cars stuck in traffic.

Then there was the entrepreneur who capitalized on the dreadful bathroom situation during Carnival. Carnival is generally a time when people lower their standards in terms of appropriate/discrete public urination. Which is scary considering I've seen men sit on a curb, whip it out, and discretely (read: incredibly obviously) pee in the gutter. And this is on a normal day. Imagine how graphic it gets when the streets are filled with hoards of bebados!

Anyways, this genius Brazilian man decided to construct a cardboard stall around an open manhole. He then charged ladies 1 real to enter the makeshift stall to squat over a manhole to xixi. If that sounds discus ting to you, you have probably never celebrated gets MUCH worse, like digging a tiny hole in the sand and pretending like you are sitting back and enjoying the ocean view

But, when it comes to creative jobs, the roller-guri takes the cake! At the Zona Norte shopping mall, it is difficult enough trying to navigate the hoards of shoppers (and 2 hour old babies...its like they are popping them out in the parking lot before getting their holiday shopping done). Well, someone at the mall finally had enough and decided that the only obvious way to make life easier on the mall janitors was to give them roller blades.

So, a note to all Zona Norte Shoppers: keep your head up, because the speed skater/janitor may be protected from head to toe (we are talkin helmet, knee pads, wrist guards, elbow pads, gloves...) but they have no concern for your safety when trash collecting at 90mph. It's a serious job folks!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Crazy Gringo Culture Shock

I'm officially in California! I had planned on trying to get together and actually meet all of you Rio ex-pats before leaving (so I no longer have to refer to you as my "internet friends"), but you know what they say: Time flies when you're having fun in denial about leaving and don't even notice it's time until you're sitting on an airplane surrounded by obnoxious, sun-burnt Americans.

The goodbye was hard, and I can't even begin to imagine how often the airport staff has to wait on weepy american girls saying bye to their sexy brazilian "boyfriends"...the whole thing felt sort of silly and cliche, which made it a little easier. Anyways, if we've made it 6 months apart, 3 months should be half as hard, right?

I hate flying because not only do I always feel sick to my stomach, but I ALWAYS get placed next to the crazies. Well, this flight was no different. While waiting for my flight, I had the pleasure of listening to a gringo who "vacays in Copacabana because its the only place where the prostitutes are hot" giving advice to a Swedish man about the best time to visit Las Vegas. Apparently it's Valentines Day because all of the boyfriend-less women are depressed (of course) and go to Vegas to drink their sorrows away, lowering their standards enough to hook up with ogres. He ended up in the seat behind me.

Next to me was a lovely Australian couple. And when I say "lovely", I actually mean "incredibly rude AND smelly". They fought the whole time....with me because I wouldn't give up my isle seat and move to the window. I'm sorry but I saved that seat 1 month ahead of time and your husband's flatulence does not make me any more eager to be trapped in the window seat.

The real "cereja no bolo" was the long-haired, eye liner-wearing, blue velvet jacket-sporting American who challenged a poor brazilian man to a duel. The seat belt light was turned off once we landed, and two brazilian men tried to rush to the front to get off the plane before the huge line of overhead luggage people formed. Well, "velvet jacket" didn't like that. He stepped in front and said, "If you wanna get by, TOUGH GUY, you gotta go through me". The Brazilian apologized and told the man he would wait.

That didn't work, "velvet jacket" was ready for a fight! Of course, he made sure to mention that he was too classy to fight in front of women and children, and that they should both "walk like gentlemen until baggage claim" where the duel was set to occur just after sun-down. The next 20 minutes was excruciating while everyone was stuck in line; velvet jacket just inches from the poor brazilian man's face, staring! Every now and then he mumbled "tough guy" and "you better be ready to go hard". It was creepily sexual, and everyone was staring and stifling laughter.

As expected, "velvet jacket" was nowhere to be found at baggage claim.

P.S. There is no picture included in this post because I am writing on a Mac computer and I can't figure anything out. Macs are a weird dichotomy of being made as simple as possible for children and computer-tards, and being incredibly difficult to figure out. It's almost like your IQ has to be below a certain number to understand how to use one...
Sorry if anyone is offended by that...but you know its true!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Até logo, Brasil!

Ahhhhh, so I have officially ignored my blog for about a week. It was 50% because I wanted to spend every last second with my Namo before being shipped off to Gringolândia, and 50% because I'm not sure what direction to take my Brazil blog in while I'm living in California.

Anyhoo, a week of adventure (read: going to the mall and watching movies) means a week's worth of stories. And living at my parents' house for the first time in 4 years, and no Namo to distract me, means I will have lots of blogging time. Stay tuned, it's sure to be melodramatic because i'm already DROWING in saudades and I haven't even made it to the airport.

Wish me luck, I hate flying like I hate sharks.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010


So a couple days ago I wrote a "Translators Beware" post about an employer who never paid me for a completed translation. A few amazing bloggers, Rachel and "Ray", helped out by reposting it on their sites.

Well, either the three angry blog posts coming up on her google search, or my many angry emails did the trick, and I have been paid. I have decided to take down my post because there is really no way for me to know whether or not it is true that she "didn't receive any of my past emails".

Thanks for the support either way! Freelance jobs can be stressful!

Monday, December 6, 2010


If you have never watched the program Pânico on television here, it is definitely a must see. It has all the ridiculousness of a Latin American day time program (ie. girls dancing around in bathing suits) and a bunch of hilarious skits. My favorite is “The Imposter”. They have a cast member who manages to sneak his way into high profile events without tickets or passes of any kind. Of the ones I have seen: the final world cup game in south Africa (he actually got close enough to the players to talk to them…no ticket), Paul McCartney concert, and the house where the Twilight Saga movie was being filmed (he got Kristen Stuart in her Calcinhas, and left garlic on Robert Pattinson’s bed).

This show is very close to my heart, because I was on it. Well, I cant be sure I was on it, but I was for sure filmed on Copacabana beach. It was my second week or so in Rio, my understanding of Portuguese was limited and I was very vulnerable. My friends and I stumbled out of a night club at 5am, ate some açai, changed into our bathing suits and went to the beach.

It all happened so quickly. One minute I was lying on the beach enjoying the sun with my friends, the next minute everyone was gone and I had cameras in my face and two men wearing T-shirts with women’s bodies on them and fake teeth were asking me questions. It went a little something like this:

Pânico: Você é prima de mecânico?
Me: ....what...
Pânico: Choo ehhh speaky engish?
Me: Yes
Pâncio: You are de cousã of mechanic, no?
Me: No
Pânico: Then why are your feet so dirty?
Me: .....
Pânico: Bate! (hand held in the air)
Me: (going for a high five)
Pânico: Peitinho! (going for a nipple pinch)
Me: (face slap)
Pânico: (going for a kiss)
Me: (another face slap)

Probably not my best interview. Now is when I should try to justify the dirty feet by saying I had spent all night in a grimy night club, but I shouldn't lie, I've been given the Native American name "Little Black Foot" because my feet are always dirty.

If you understand Portuguese, or want to test your skills, check out this interview. It is very long, but really really funny! The guy being interviewed is (a cutie!) the guy that plays Freddy Mercury Prateado on Pânico (Eduardo Sterblitch), and he gets Jô Soares a little drunky!

Here is the link!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

God, is that you?

I have never been religious, and probably never will be. The extent of my religious endeavours is limited to sunday school as a child (when my brother and I sat on the church balcony and counted how many old ladies with poofy white hair we could see), and reading The Bible For Dummies in highschool to avoid reading the real thing.

But something happened this weekend that has made me start to wonder...

Late late late Saturday night, a friend of my Namo's invited us out to celebrate his birthday. I was tired (as always) after writing about a million pages for work, but it was important to my Namo so I sucked it up. It was one of those crazy electronic parties, in Barra...the kind were you have to dance your life away until sunrise...not for the mildly enthused.

That's when God stepped in.

Before we left, my Namo had to stop to withdraw some money, but no matter how hard he tried, every attempt failed.

1) While trying to withdraw money from the first bank, all of the alarms went off and the machines shut down.....weird....

2) The 24 hour ATM ran out of money right after the person before us finished....double weird...

3) Card #1 of my Namo's had stopped working that day and he had no idea why.

4) Namo had saved card #2's pin number in his phone. His phone stopped working that night so he removed the sim card. Once he put it back in, the pin number was erased.

5) After 1 hour (literally) of walking around Zona Sul, we didn't find a single bank that was open or working for him to withdraw money.

He gave up and we went home to eat chocolate and watch a movie. I'd be lying if I didn't say it was a slight relief, but I did feel bad for my discouraged Namo. When things like this happen, it makes me wonder if there was some reason we were not supposed to go that night.

P.S. The picture. How come when I type "God" into the google search bar, this is the first picture that comes up? I went through 3 pages without finding anything "God-like". Apparently "God of War" trumps the man upstairs.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Awww que fofinho!

I think my page needs a little “cute factor” after all of the mutant roach pictures and I’m gonna talk about filhotes. When it comes to pets, I have a slightly traumatic past. Let’s go through the obituaries:

Mickey (cat) – Scratched my cornea as a child , major jealousy issues
Sunshine (bird) – Heart Attack (cat scared her…no joke. This may be a good time to mention that I creeped the shit out of my parents after this death. My forced Sunday school and 4th grade owl pellet lesson plan led to me digging up dead Sunshine multiple times to see if her body went to heaven/to play with her bones. I haven’t grown into a serial killer yet, but then again, I am only 22.)

…back to the obituaries…

Nameless (Guinea Pig) – Decapitation (Sister’s Shar-pei ripped it off)
Milky Way (Cat) – Stomach Tumor (her nickname was “fatass”)
Rambo (Shih-tzu) – Squished by a car on the 4th of July
Cricket (Shih-tzu #2 and Rambo replacement) – Secretly sold by my parents while I was on vacation for a few days. (I hung up on multiple “crazy” people asking about the ad for a puppy in the newspaper before I put 2 and 2 together.)

Then there’s my little Gatinha. She is still alive and well, but probably because she is living with her other mommy. Nonetheless, I feel she deserves an introduction, and with Danielle showing off her Gatinha, I had to give mine some spotlight!

Needless to say, I’m not jumping right into getting my dream puppy, A PUG. Then again, I’ve already lived through eyepatches, heart failure, decapitation, cancer, squishing and betrayal, how much worse could it get?

Luckily for me, I have a saint of a Sogra. It's every child's dream (except my Namo's) to have a parent who impulsively brings home puppies on a regular basis, and that is exactly what she does. When I first met my Namo about 2 years ago, his mom had 2 cats and 1 dog. Now there are 2 cats and 3 dogs!

Meet Luna. She was the ex's dog, but Namo won the custody battle. She has an underbite (the dog, not the ex).

Meet Madonna (or "Safadinha" as she is often called).

And the newest addition, Baby Suzy. She is like a squeaky toy, you squeeze her and she pees, but I still love her!

We won't discuss the two cats, because I have a theory about cats and their connection with the dead, and these two cats are seriously channeling some evil spirits!
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