Bosnia’s Nadrealisti Sunday, Jun 15 2008 

Nadrealisti I guess means “surrealists,” but basically it’s kind of a joke. There’s a line from a song by Dino Merlin I like, “Burek,” from the album of the same name (what is burek?), that says (please check it out!):

Fundamentalisti no! [Fudamentalists, no!]

Unitaristi, no-no-no-no-no! [Unitarians, no…!]

Neokomunisti, no! [Neocommunists, no!]

Nadrealisti, eto to je to! [Nadrealisti/Surrealists, there, that’s it!]

I’m no expert on nadrealism/surrealism, nor on the Bosnian Top Lista Nadrealista comedy sketch group I was thinking of today. Perhaps my all-time favorite comedy skit, “Šest jezika” [Six Languages], comes from this group. If you understand any Slavic language you will get this, especially if I add that “potpuno drugačije” means “totally different.” The gag is that “Serbo-Croatian” is clearly six distinct languages (my favorite is the division of “crnogorski/Montenegrin” into “crnski and gorski/Montean and Negrin”) and we get to hear how “potpuno drugačije” the phrase “ja čitam/I read” sounds in all six. It continues from there on the same theme, speakers of Hercegovinian needing translators for basic interactions with speakers of Gorski, etc. This kills me!

And then, shockingly, while poking around for more Nadrealisti videos I can understand (on many of them the sound quality’s not so good, and my Gorski 😉 isn’t good enough to understand through that), I found some that have been subtitled! Cool! I’ll share a couple below.

This one isn’t subtitled, but here’s it’s almost more important to know something about the war in Bosnia than to know the language. They’re talking about the American Plan, and who’s going to go where, etc. Having just finished reading Yugoslavia: Death of a Nation, this one really struck a chord with me. The visual is enough. I almost cried.

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Cool Word Visualization Tool Wednesday, Apr 16 2008 

Check out Visuwords. Cool word meaning/relationship visualization tool. Haven’t yet thought about how I’d actually use it in practical terms (other than as a fancy thesaurus), but darn it’s cool!

Actually, I learned a new word today, cassation, and it’s not in there. But a word I’ve always liked but only actually seen in a word-a-day calendar I had at least a decade ago, pertinacity, was in there and tied to all the words you’d expect it to be, and then some.