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12 December 2001

Today, someone asked me if I was German even after she'd heard me talk some. After hearing me talk some more she asked me if my parents were German. (If you don't know the answer: nope!) I'm sure it was obvious later in the conversation, but I got away with a couple sentences!

I had a frustrating afternoon. I waited an hour for someone who never showed because he was sick and it put me in a bad mood. He'd emailed me to tell me he wasn't coming, but only a couple hours before and I'd already gone to class and hadn't checked my email since. I mean, it's not his fault that he's sick, but it still put me in a bad mood. I have trouble getting quickly un-pissed after working on getting pissed for an hour. I don't really like being pissed or angry, so it puts me in a bad mood, and even though I'm no longer really angry later, I'm still in a bad mood. Having to wait in a near a bunch of people who were smoking didn't help either. We had a Christmas party in Polish and after eating a bunch of cookies, the sugar high overcame the bad mood. We watched some really cheesy kids' show Christmas special and I didn't understand a thing except for when two kids introduced themselves.

My Polish teacher, who has two little kids, thinks it's horrible that they put commercials in the middle of the kids' shows in Poland, because then they want all the stuff in the commercials. (I haven't watched any kids' TV here, but I think there are very few commercials during the shows.) I think by the time I was allowed to watch any significant amount of commercial TV I was old enough to understand how commercials work. I can't remember longing for anything I saw in a commercial. I do remember having a special class in the library one day in fifth grade where we watched a movie about how commericials are made and how they're meant to trick you. They interviewed kids who were so disappointed because their board game didn't have animated, talking characters like the one on TV. I couldn't believe that the kids had believed that the commercials were real. We also learned how they'll go through 10 boxes of cereal to pick out the perfect flakes for the bowl in the commericial and how the milk is often partly glue. (Pre computer graphics, I'm sure.) I'm amazed that I can remember this much from something I saw 10 years ago. I can even remember what the talking board game looked like, but I can't remember its name. Sheesh. I always try to read the notes on the bottom of the screen explaining how the commercial is fake. One of my favorites is the one where some suburban assault vehicle starts towing a semi. I forget which one (which shows that their advertising isn't working), but it says: "Can a [insert name of SUV] tow a semi? Nah."

All this talk of remembering and forgetting reminds me of how we didn't learn any reflexive verbs in German until the middle of the second semester, so we knew how to say we'd forgotten something, but we didn't know how to say we'd remembered something because remembering is reflexive. We went around saying we hadn't forgotten stuff all the time. We also hadn't learned any separable prefix verbs, and I honestly don't know how we said much of anything. With the newer book they use now, I think they learn separable prefix verbs a lot sooner. Probably for the better.

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