IN A RECENT QUESTION on our Facebook group, we asked the question, “What’s your favorite saying in a foreign language? (And, er, give us the translation please!),” and the responses were pretty intriguing.
Language is the foundation for our entire understanding of existence. When walking down the street, we don’t gather information about our surroundings in abstract, undefinable symbols, sniffing like a dog or collecting data with our tongue like a snake; we store the words in our memory, and likewise recall them–which is why when traveling, being surrounded by foreign words makes you feel like you’re on some awesome crazy pills. Even when I go to Philly and everyone calls sandwiches “hoagies,” I’m reminded that I’m a visitor, that this place and all these people were here way before me.