Michele Clark: Slang and Cultural Expressions

Approx. time Expression Explanation
0:45 B&B bed and breakfast: a small kind of hotel with personalized service
1:54 remodel the house change the style or form of the house
2:05 fazenda Brazilian plantation with countryhouse
2:10 working plantation The B&B is an elegant old house but is located on a farm that also produces real crops (in this case, coffee beans).
2:28 phoenix project rebuilding something from a state of destruction
2:36 renovate repair, fix up, make new
3:05 re-plant to plant again
3:30 Fazenda Neuchatel http://www.fazendaneuchatel.com
4:57 isolated alone, not surrounded by other people
5:37 telecommuting working long distance, using the telephone or internet to connect with co-workers and clients instead of meeting face to face
6:16 winery business where grapes are made into wine
6:23 peacocks large birds with tall, showy tail feathers
6:27 earrings Michele’s shop sells handcrafted jewelry, including earrings
7:48 quilombola descendents of Afro-Brazilian slaves who escaped from working on Brazilian slave plantations
8:04 durable sturdy, long lasting
8:30 Dona Belô woman who is teaching Michele how to make items from golden grass
8:49 buriti palm http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mauritia_flexuosa
9:53 http://www.brazilianshack.org Listen to Brazilian music when visiting Michele’s site!
10:34 respect for space not entering other people’s property (even though many Americans don’t have walls or fences surrounding it)
12:38 pavement cement or asphalt roadways
13:09 rolling stop slowing down and rolling through an intersection without actually coming to a complete stop at the stop sign
13:29 jeitinho brasileiro The “Brazilian way” is a practical approach to life, working around rules and obstacles to get what you need, often done with a wink and a smile.

Alan Headbloom

Alan advises Americans how to be global citizens and expats how to fit in to Michigan culture without annoying their native coworkers and clients. He also tweets and blogs at the intersection of language and culture. Over decades, he's traveled, studied, or lived on six continents, putting strange foods into his mouth and emitting strange sounds from it. His use of English, German, Spanish, Portuguese, French, Swedish, Hausa, and Japanese all improve with alcohol use. He gives invited public presentations on culture and unsolicited private advice on English grammar and usage; the latter isn't always appreciated. Visit his website for information on consulting, coaching, or speaking engagements.