The Good Blood

The other day, I was introduced to a site that like mine, covers just about anything and everything that’s cool about Brazil. When seeing both perspectives, it just goes to show that one person can’t possibly cover everything so it’s nice to see someone indirectly saying “hey, you missed a whole bunch of stuff”. It is run by a Brazilian woman named Eloise and she currently lives in Canada. I recommend checking out her site/blog, The Good Blood, as you’ll be sure to find interesting content.

Eyes On Brazil t-shirts now available!

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I’ve had a few lists of cultural phrases in my head for many many months and the day came when I decided to do something with them. The result? Eyes On Brazil t-shirts are now available for purchase!

You might be thinking these are going to be t-shirts with just the name of my site but they aren’t. In general, they combine cultural phrases with designs and give you a way to say “I’m in the know” when it comes to all things Brazilian.

Check it out for yourself here at the Eyes On Brazil store.

As a side note, any and all phrases you see are also available to be placed on any product Printfection offers. Colors can also be altered, just let me know. Currently, there are 10 shirts (for Brazil in general) to choose from although there are more shirts in the other two sub-stores. Stay tuned because more are on their way!

500 Posts in my 17th month

I started this site as a way to store the information about Brazil that I held in my head but quickly I saw its use as a learning tool. There was a time when I approached the subject of Brazil as a ‘typical gringo’ but that was nearly 10 years ago. Why the need to dive deeper? Well, stereotypes have always interested me and so has sociology and etymology and because of that, I knew there was no way to let Brazil let me off the hook easily. I made my bed long ago and getting under the covers was the only way for me to get to know the sleeping beauty called Brazil (although I do have one complaint, she often hogs the blanket).

Even though the word Brasil in Portuguese is masculine, I’ve always seen it as feminine…like a tomboy who grows into a beautiful woman that never stops talking and whom you never tire of (we all know women talk more than men). She’s got a voice that’s sweet like honey and her words are as smooth and curvy as the border of her body. She speaks in tongues and she’s got your ear, from the moment you first see her.

Here’s to 500 posts and 130,000 views!

Doing “The Wait”

I’d like to talk for a minute about what I like to call “the wait”, even though it’s not solely a Brazilian thing. Be it on the weekend, during the holiday, or in the evenings…Brazilians love to do “the wait”.

Now, you might be thinking it’s some sort of new dance craze that has struck the country, but no…in fact, it’s the lack of steps involved that give it its name.

“The wait” is to sit on the sidewalk, preferably in a chair, more preferably with others or at least in ear-shot of others. Two other popular places to do this include leaning out the window facing the street and sitting on the doorstep. It’s not entirely clear what they are waiting for or why but maybe it’s a way to get back at all the long lines, the bureaucracy, the red tape, etc…perhaps to be able to say “See? I can wait because I want to, because I feel like it and most importantly, because I’m free.” Or perhaps I’m wrong and Brazilians simply like to wait…

Some examples…

Here, here and here.

Ariano Suassuna – Brazil’s best playwright

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Ariano Suassuna (born João Pessoa, 1927) is a Brazilian playwright and author.

Four of his plays have been filmed and he is considered one of Brazil’s greatest living playwrights. He is also an important regional writer doing various novels set in the Northeast of Brazil. He received an honorary doctorate at a ceremony performed at a circus.

His Plays

  • Auto da Compadecida, (1959);
  • O Castigo da Soberba, (1960);
  • O Casamento Suspeitoso, (1961);
  • Uma Mulher Vestida de Sol, (1964);
  • O Rico Avarento, (1964);
  • O Santo e a Porca, (1964);
  • Pena e a Lei, (1974);
  • Alto da Boa Preguiça, (1982).

On the first play, Auto da Compadecida, its probably the most famous he has written and it was turned into a movie in the last several years. Just a side note for those wishing to see it…It is set in the Northeast and uses many regionalisms and the film is a bit slapstick, not to mention they make fun of Northeasterners. Even I had a hard time understanding what made this film so good in the minds of many Brazilians for they absolutely loved it. That being said, I do plan to see it again to see if my opinion changes.

As far as Suassuna, he draws very large crowds when he gives speeches at universities these days. Unfortunately, on Youtube, much of his words get a bit distorted due to the microphone he uses and the acoustics of the places he speaks in. Natives shouldn’t have a problem understanding him though.

Here’s a short article on Suassuna in English, found on Varig Magazine (homepage).