Friday, December 24, 2010

Some Cosas Never Cambio

Why do language instructors spend so much time telling their students that proper names will never change?

Do they know how much confusion this causes a person when he walks into a Mexican McDonald's to order a Happy Meal, only to find that it is called a Cajita Feliz?

Or when he learns that not only are "The Flintstones" really "Los Picapiedros," but that Fred is actually Pedro? Remarkably, Pebbles, Bam-Bam, and Dino escape unscathed.

This is something that I am noticing with increasing frequency. Things that should change, don't (Hunt's Classic Italian Garlic & Herb Spaghetti Sauce). Things that shouldn't change, do ("The Jetsons" become "Los Supersónicos"). What does and doesn't change is inconsistent ("Friends" is still "Friends," while "The Super Friends" are "Los Amigos Super". And some translations are just plain weird ("Jennifer's Body" becomes "Diabólica Tentación" instead of "La Cuerpa De Jennifer."

Just an observation. It doesn't bother me at all, and in fact I take immense pleasure in it. Part of the adventure of living in another country is never knowing what stuff is called or how to find it.

At least we had "Los Picapiedros" last month. State-side, I believe you were subjected to "Hola, Gato." I mean, "Hello, Kitty."

And before anyone asks why I have these plushies, I can assure you that it was purely to act as a visual aid in discussing today's blog.

Yup. That's it. For real. I promise.

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