Lost in Translation

Time for another story from the misadventures of Lauren Michele Stewart! Just kidding. This tale is actually very thought-provoking. *GASP*

Back in my college days Spanish dramas were my escape from reality, Isabel, Los Hombres de Paco, & Un paso adelante being my personal favorites. On top of that, I listened to a lot of Spanish music in an attempt to perfect my ear for the beautiful language of España. Never in a million years did I think that music and TV shows in another language would affect me around English speakers, but it did indeed happen. One day while I was in class, my ears started to interpret English in a different way. At first I thought I was just extremely tired, which is normal for a student, but careful listening proved that I was indeed hearing what sounded like the only other language in my life: Spanish. At one point I silently prayed that the teacher and students wouldn’t talk to me because I couldn’t understand a word they were saying. Even though I was hearing a familiar language, my brain wasn’t distinguishing the words. After a few minutes everything went back to normal, but I never forgot what happened.

The experience gave me a higher level of respect for both polyglots and immigrants learning a foreign language. I wasn’t necessarily scared or overwhelmed, but it was unexpected and left me feeling disoriented. I don’t necessarily have a moral or a mind-blowing message to share with you. I just thought the experience was unique, something I’d never heard of before. I wish my tongue had miraculously become bilingual in that moment and remained so. 😂 As a side note, I highly recommend utilizing television and music as immersion techniques for learning a language. I am by no means fluent, but I understand a decent chunk of Castilian Spanish. I refer to a specific type because that is what my ears are accustomed to; I have a very hard time understanding accents outside of Spain. 🇪🇸

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– Lauren Michele <3

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Farewell Rio

🏀 🏇 🏉 🚣 ⛳ 🏊 🎾 🚴 ⚽ 🏀 🏇 🏉 🚣 ⛳ 🏊 🎾 🚴 ⚽ 🏀 🏇 🏉 🚣 ⛳ 🏊

With sadness, I bid farewell to the 2016 Olympics.  I have been filled with pride and joy watching my teams compete these past two weeks.  Yes, I said teams.  Of course USA is my number one, but I also support the countries that make up my heritage.  After all, they are underdogs compared to team USA.  No harm done!  Let’s take a look at the medal count:

🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆🏆 🏆🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆

• Team USA 🇺🇸 | 121 Medals | 46 G – 37 S – 38 B

• Team Great Britain 🇬🇧 | 67 Medals | 27 G – 23 S – 17 B

• Team Spain 🇪🇸 | 17 Medals | 7 G – 4 S – 6 B

• Team Israel 🇮🇱 | 2 Medals | 2 B

• Team Ireland 🇮🇪 | 2 Medals | 2 S

🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆🏆 🏆🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆 🏆

What were your favorite moments in Rio?? I have so many I could mention, but I will try to narrow it down.  I felt like a proud mother watching Michael Phelps have one last successful Olympic games after the rough few years he’s had (maybe he’ll be back!).  The USA women’s gymnastics team kicked butt and made me feel more patriotic than I have ever felt in my entire life.  Shout-out to Michael Phelps (5G, 1S), Katie Ledecky (4G, 1S), and Simone Biles (4G, 1B)!!  According to Google, they are the top medalists for 2016.  Team USA made me proud all around, but it felt good to dominate artistic gymnastics and swimming.  After a rough start, I am so proud of Spain for getting the bronze in men’s basketball.  Also, a silver in women’s basketball.  Top 3 in the world.  Not too shabby!!  I watched Marc Lopez & Rafael Nadal win gold in men’s doubles.  I’m pretty sure I grew gray hair during that match.  The stress was real, but Lopez earned his first medal, and Rafa now has a gold medal in singles and doubles.  I watched Team GB get the gold in women’s field hockey.  It was a stressful but thrilling game.  Well done ladies!  I did not have the pleasure of watching Ireland at all, but I am nonetheless proud.  Last but certainly not least, I want to express my admiration for Team Israel.  My heart breaks knowing that the Israeli athletes continue to be treated like trash.  However, they held their heads high, maintained composure, and walked away with two medals.

Farewell Olympics!  See you in Tokyo!! 🇯🇵

🏀 🏇 🏉 🚣 ⛳ 🏊 🎾 🚴 ⚽ 🏀 🏇 🏉 🚣 ⛳ 🏊 🎾 🚴 ⚽ 🏀 🏇 🏉 🚣 ⛳ 🏊

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D.N.A.

Normally I steer clear of discussions involving ethnicity, but I saw a video the other day that frustrated me and can keep my mouth shut no longer.  The whole point of talking about prejudice is promoting appreciation and respect for people from every corner of the world.  No one ethnicity is better than the others.  This world is so large and diverse and intriguing.  I constantly find myself searching the internet for hours learning about different countries.  Cultures are fascinating to me, especially those that make up my own heritage.  I’m proud of who God made me to be therefore I physically hurt when I see people ashamed of and unhappy with who they are.  I was watching a group of people take DNA tests on YouTube the other day, and one man was upset with his results.  He wasn’t upset in an explosive way, just disappointed.  His results showed that the majority of his ancestors came from different parts of Europe.  His exact words were “I’m just a… basically just a white guy.  I’m a little disappointed.  I thought I might be something cool.”  Of course he has the right to be disappointed, and it’s not like he flipped out or overreacted.  I don’t want to blame him directly because he didn’t do anything wrong, but I do want to make a point.  Europe consists of more than 40 countries and shares a land border with Asia.  It is anything but boring, and labeling European as “white” is a disservice.  Aside from my Sephardic heritage, I am European (as far as I know).  I am Jewish and Spanish on my mom’s side and English, Irish, and Scottish on my dad’s side; additionally, there is a possibility of Arab ancestry on my mom’s side and French on my dad’s side.  I have no problem identifying as Caucasian, but it isn’t a label I use often because my heritage deserves much more than a shallow adjective.  I encourage each and every one of you to dig beneath the surface and learn as much as you can about your heritage.  If you feel pressure to be ashamed and not care, don’t give in to the pettiness.  Set a good example by appreciating where you come from and respecting where others come from.  If your attitude and heart are in the right place, that is the best you can do.

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Emotions, Emotions, & More Emotions

The day/night has gone from bad to worse, and I am absolutely thrilled to be here telling this tale.  Please don’t feel sympathetic because this whole sob story revolves around a TV show.  Yes, that is where my life is at right now.  A little less than one week ago, I discovered the show “Velvet” on Netflix.  It takes place in 1950s Spain and revolves around a fashion store and the relationship between Alberto Marquez and Ana Ribera.  Netflix has 2 seasons, but the show was just renewed for season 4 in Spain.  I knew about the delay beforehand, but the last episode of season 2 still brought with it disappointment.  My afternoon was spoiled by the realization that I had no episodes left to watch, at least for now.  I shouldn’t have done it, but I gave in to curiosity and feverishly searched the internet for clues as to what happens in season 3.  WORST.  IDEA.  EVER.  If you are currently watching “Velvet” and do not want to know what happens, please STOP reading NOW.  Seriously.  SPOILERS AHEAD.  You’ve been warned.

Alberto dies, and Ana, amidst the devastation, gives birth to his child.  I am sure this news did not really affect you emotionally.  Me on the other hand, I am a mess.  I have been crying non-stop, and I feel like I’m going to throw up.  Why such a violent reaction?  I have no job therefore I had the time to dedicate several days of my life to Alberto and Ana’s love story.  We, yes we, went through a lot of ups and downs this week.  Finally, after two seasons worth of drama, they were together and happy.  Of course something tragic had to happen.  This is television.  No one can be happy!!  I was so anxious to watch the new episodes, and now I don’t think I can watch the show ever again.

Wow!  I need a job.  Or a hobby that pays well.  😂  I desperately need to watch something funny.  Perhaps my favorite show “The Office.”  If that doesn’t make me feel better, I am beyond help.  Hint to Antena 3:  Jim and Pam get married and live happily ever after.  NO ONE DIES.  Oy vey!  Is that so hard?!  Why is television so emotionally stressful???

Update: AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Alberto is alive!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  The moral of this story is I overreacted without actually watching season 3 and seeing for myself every single scene, not just a clip on Youtube.  I am so flipping happy right now but also mad.  Really really mad.  Unbelievably mad that I had to go through this whole ordeal within one hour.  I send my sincerest of apologies to Antena 3.  Lo siento!  Keep up the good work!

Update #2:  It is now 11am, and I am somewhat awake.  I ended up watching a few episodes of “The Secret Life of an American Teenager.”  After all, what I really needed was more drama.  😂

If you are interested in watching “Velvet” because this post was a fantastic promotion, here are the necessary links:

• Antena 3 Youtube – https://www.youtube.com/user/antena3

• Antena 3 Website – http://www.antena3.com/series/velvet/

• Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/VelvetA3/

• IMDB – http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2955402/

• The show is available on Netflix in Canada, Latin America, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

I hope all of you have a wonderful Tuesday.  If you haven’t already, click the links down below to read my blog posts on the 88th Academy Awards.  “See” you soon readers!

The Winners’ Circle – The 88th Academy Awards | Part 1

The Red Carpet – The 88th Academy Awards | Part 2

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