Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Speaking of Everyday Speech...

So Yesterday, I mentioned that whole thing about wanting to know how the ordinary people speak, and that sort of thing. Well, I had an adventure in that today, and learned something quite interesting.

Last night Raisa and I were watching our nightly soap opera "Tatiyanin den' " Most Russians roll there eyes when you mention the name of this program, and yes, it's a soap opera and that includes all the obnoxiousness that goes with it, but in some ways it's very good at displaying Russian life, and I kind of got used to watching it, and once you get started, you kind of get involved. My life does not revolve around the serial though and if I miss a night or two I don't cry and have a spaz.

Anyway, so we were watching our program and Raisa, referring to one of the character's suddenly goes
"He's a rag!" And I do a little double take.
And Raisa replies.
"Do you know what "rag" means?"
"Uh..." I thought I meant "rag" but apparently it had a different meaning "No."
"So look it up."
I start paging through the little dictionary that we keep in the kitchen for just such emergency's then suddenly I go.
"Wait isn't it like..." And I point to my napking and make a swiping motion.
"Yes, but it can be used for people to."
I found this to be very interesting. Raisa then proceeded to explain to me that since the character on the show, Serge, had a thing for like three different women, he was therefore what in English we'd refer to as a jerk, or a player, or a variety of other names, and in Russian Apparently one of the words they use to denote such a man is "rag."

If you think that's all, it gets better.

Today I was talking about some good and bad points of guys, with Nina. Suddenly, I saw an opening to try out this not particularaly knew vocabulary word, but the word in a new context so I casually go "Yeah, You don't want a guy who's a rag" and Nina looks at me for a second and busts up laughing.

I wasn't insulted as I occasionally get this type of reaction when I try out words in a new context that I've learned (Such as the word 'cotton' which is a slang term for 'boring' it's always entertaining when I try that out on new people) so I go "Can I say that?" And she's like "Yes! That's awesome!" and so that made me feel really good about myself. and I had to explain where I learned the way to use the word, and it was quite cool. Nina told me that it's a word that ordinary people use and I was like "good, because that's what I want to learn."

And apparently, I'm working on it!

1 comment:

Vondea said...

Perhaps a Russian soap opera would be te perfect setting for a DI adventure!