Thursday, March 11, 2004

Two small incidents from today:

The first in class. I taught gigantic as a synonym of large and it reminded my rather attractive student of another word she's heard;

"Ah, Thom, I wanted to ask you: What does gorgeous mean?" Hmm. Obviously, it was in my interests to string this out.

"Where did you here the word?"

"In a song"

"Ah", I replied, resisting the temptation to sing and thus damage my chances. "I'm gorgeous", I explained.

A blank expression. "Umm...". You will be pleased to hear that my professionalism prevented me telling her that she was gorgeous.

I explained some other way, and she laughed. Her boyfriend is a lucky man.

The second cycling to another class in the howling wind. The accompanying rain made my brakes even less reliable than usual (actually, I should say brake - singular - as the back ones aren't on the bike anymore, but Mum may start to worry...) and the Italian drivers even more dangerous. As if that wasn't enough to contend with, I rounded a corner only to be met by a dog, fangs showing, barking at me. I swerved in surprise, nearly hitting the Mini Cooper that was whizzing past on my left. However, the incident only reminded me of a humourous moment in class a few weeks ago when I explained to some students that, in English, dogs go "Woof!" and not "Bow!" as they do in Italian. "Bow!"; I mean really, who ever heard of a dog going "Bow!"?

Climbing the campanile next to Brunelleschi's dome, Florence.

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