EEUU en el Espejo Retrovisor

(¡Mi primera traducción sin ayuda! Espere errores y no se decepcionará. Todos los enlaces son para páginas en inglés.) “¿Pero porque te fuiste de Estados Unidos?” Los madrileños deben hacerme esa pregunta al menos una vez a la semana. Algunos parecen mistificados. ¿No es Estados Unidos más rico de España? ¿Los estadounidenses no pueden caminar…

Madrid Impressions: Round Five

The latest installment: VENEZUELAN DIASPORA I meet Ecuadorans and Colombians in Madrid — and should, according to immigration-to-Spain stats — but not as often as I meet Venezuelans: two waiters and a manager in one restaurant; the part-owner of another; students, job seekers, new arrivals. Ties between the two countries are old, run deep. Some…

Bucharest: First Impressions

Traffic. Fifth worst urban traffic on Planet Earth, according to the TomTom global traffic index. Visit and you’ll learn why. Picture Venice Boulevard in L.A., or maybe Wilshire. Grant yourself godlike powers. Add a couple of lanes, dirty it up, kill most of the median landscaping. Plug in guaranteed-to-gridlock traffic circles, antiquated signaling. Hoist this…

Explaining the American Accent

Europeans often recognize Yankee tourists for a trait that we Yanks often don’t know we possess: our American accents. I have one. Nearly everyone I knew in the U.S. — in high school, kollidge, beyond — had one. But, many Americans don’t know they’ve got ’em. Regional accents exist, sure: Southern, New England, New York…

More than a Year with Linux

I write in the wake of the WannaCry ransomware attack, which has infected nearly a quarter of a million Windows PCs worldwide. Many victims must now be casting wistful eyes at alternative computer operating systems: Apple’s macOS, or the non-proprietary, lesser-known GNU/Linux. I haven’t used macOS since the 1980s, can’t plug or pan. I post…