girlsdontcry's Diaryland Diary

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Let's call the whole thing off.

I've kind of travelled a bit. Not obsessively, but in the years since I left Australia for the first time, when I was 22, I've managed to get myself around to a few countries. And there's two pieces of information I want to share.

One is this. In Austria, home of psychoanalysis (and therefore the concept of being anally retentive), the toilets have a moulded tray things that catch your shit so you can examine it before you flush it away.

I kid you not.

No doubt Austrians feel robbed when they go overseas and just have to admire their turds from a distance and under cover of water and whatever else has been deposited in the bowl. If you've grown up able to closely admire what your body has done with the bratwurst and sauerkraut you consumed the night before, you might miss it. But if you didn't grow up like that, it's pretty fucking weird. Not just that you are confronted with your own shit, but knowing that you are surrounded by a nation full of people who do this on a daily basis.

My second major insight into cultural difference is this: In the US, marinara sauce does not have seafood in it.

True. Look at this.

Main Entry: mar·i·na·ra
Pronunciation: "mar-&-'nar-&, "mer-&-'ner-, -'när-
Function: adjective
Etymology: Italian (alla) marinara, literally, in sailor style
Date: circa 1948
: made with tomatoes, onions, garlic, and spices (marinara sauce); also : served with marinara sauce (spaghetti marinara)

It took awhile for me to figure this out. You see, as far as I'm concerned marinara sauce has prawns, octopus, clams, mussels, or whatever, it's just fishy. So I was kind of disgusted when I'd see menus in the US that suggest you might like to order a plate of pasta with marinara sauce and beef. But I put it down to -- well, different tastes in food. Hey, they invented surf'n'turf, I guess they like their meat and their fish together.

Somehow, though, I did work it out. And I've been on a mission to prove that Americans are wrong. YOU TOOK THE MARINE OUT OF MARINARA. It's just tomato sauce.

Yesterday I looked at a bunch of Italian recipe sites -- I don't speak Italian, but I can recognise the words pesce, vongole and gamberetti. And those ingredients all seem to feature in recipes that have the word "marinara" in the title. So now I feel I can die peacefully.

(Incidentally, I clicked on the "translate page" link in google for a recipe, because I wanted to know what the word cozze meant in the phrase "Cozze alla Marinara". It translates it as "Cozze to the duffelcoat". So maybe I'm entirely wrong about this whole thing.)

..........

In the course of writing this entry, I've just realised that Americans use the word "mold" instead of "mould". And, I mean, WHAT IS THE FCKING PREJDICE AGAINST THE LETTER U. U. U. U.

uuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu

There. A whole bnch of spare letter "u"s. Please. Take one. Take a few, and se them in something yo write today. Thank U.

11:59 a.m. - 2002-10-03

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