Friday, July 18, 2008

BNL and my driver

So, while Jimmy's Hindi is clicking, our driver, Raju's English is clicking. Sort of...
When he 1st started to drive for us in April all questions and statements were answered with "Yes Ma'am".

Raju, do you know where the pharmacy is - Yes Ma'am
Raju, are you coming tomorrow or Sunday - Yes Ma'am
Raju, where do you take the car when you leave at night, to your house or the office - Yes Ma'am

You get the picture.

So, he is learning English and what scares me is I think he's learning from us and the kids. While he did inform me that he's going to start taking classes twice a week, his English is getting better however, there is still a communication barrier. For instance:

Last night, I had to work late and on the way home was trying to get into the Friday night spirit by listening to BareNakedLadies (BNL) Gordon album. They crack me up. They are the only band that can pull off using words like chloresteral and Pavlov's dog in lyrics. They also rhymed genius with Venus. Gotta love them. So, we are listening to "This is me in grade 9 baby" and I am trying to explain to Raju who these guys are, why I love them and what this particular song is about.

T-This band...4 guys... songs? ... about when they were in level 9

R - Level 9?! They are good!"

T - No, they are not in level 9 now...they are my age (not quite sure of that but we are going for it) this song...this is about when they were in level 9

R - Ah cha (Hindi for ok, not sure if he's getting this)

T - The 1st words - 1st day of school and I'm already failing ..

R - (He starts laughing, ok he gets that...)

The song goes on...How do I explain binders, high waters, Stairway to Heaven, pleather pants, etc.. I give up.

But, the next song really makes me think... "Lying in bed like Brian Wilson dead"... How would I explain this... you see, Brian Wilson had OCD, what's OCD?, well its a condition where you do the same thing over and over and cant stop yourself ... anyway, he's lying in bed, you see Brian lied in bed for years, why? why would Brian or why would the BNL's? I'm not sure, ok, moving on...

Another song ..."You can be my Yoko Ono"... Again, where to start, this is getting hard...
Yoko was the lover of one of the Beatles, you know the Beatles, Love Love me Do. And the band is rumored to have broken up because she didnt get along with the other band members...why would they break up over a woman who wasnt even married to one of them at the time? Not sure, but that's not really the point, the point is ... He loves this woman enough to let her take him away from music, got it? right.

I stop trying and just start enjoying my CD. Raju can see this and later says to Tom "Ma'am very happy tonight listening to music"

On the other hand, maybe we are closer to communicating than I thought. At the end of all of it, he comes up with a statement that supports a theory that I've been harboring my whole life. Famous people are short. That's it, he says ..."Ma'am - all little people- movies, singers, dancers ...all little" and then he laughs.

We are getting there...