Thursday, January 1, 2015

REFUSAL

Mekkar’s younger sibling, Alf has stated more than a few a times, that he refuses to learn the English language and never will do so. Contrary to Alf’s normally laid-back demeanor, he is extremely blunt and forward in regards to this matter. In no way is it an issue of Alf not being able to learn the language. Alf already speaks over twenty different languages fluently from diverse areas of the world. Mekkar quips about his brother, “He can pick up other languages like drinking water. The only issue is desire.” Plus, since Mekkar and their mama also learned English beforehand, Alf could get hints and tips. Both of them would be good sources to practice the learned skills on also. He would not be relegated to honing his English on their godparent’s dog as Mekkar was required to do.

One time long ago, another person spoke plainly to Alf during a conversation and made the off-hand remark that “English is taking over the world”. This angered Alf. He responded in the following manner with arrogant tone. “It is not taking over me nor anyone in my house. I will learn all of the other languages before I will learn English. Do you hear me?” Mekkar’s younger brother already is fluent in what is considered the most difficult tongue in the world, Hungarian. For business, Alf travels all over the globe along   to frequent trips to Asia. When in Hong Kong, Alf is articulate in Cantonese Chinese. He regularly conducts affairs in German, Russian, Korean, Japanese, French, Italian, and many others. This is a skill he inherited from his mama, Sirga. Sirga, herself spoke easily more than twenty languages and forty plus dialects. For Mekkar, it is not so effortless. The oldest had a head start in regards to English, mainly the United Kingdom Commonwealth or British Queen’s version. Mekkar began that task, just after his fourth birthday, for use in the family businesses. Sirga needed the boys to be able to converse with the increased influx of tourists to the area. Who doesn’t want to see real live reindeer and experience the great outdoors?

To this day when the brothers are conversing together in a variety of ways, they continually switch languages when choosing words because one might prefer a certain one. The siblings have their favorite phrases and words in specific languages. This repetitive switching is not a common habit, even among relatives. Since they can understand some of the same tongues, this is usually not a problem, until they reach a point where the one is unfamiliar. Mainly because Alf can easily speak over twenty languages and Mekkar has the same ability in only five. Mekkar basically lost three others due to lack of mental exercise and usage. However, the older sibling can still read a little bit of those three and remember the odd word or phrase. 

The Arctic Warrior, Mekkar, must try to remember not to use English when expressing himself with his kin. This is especially true with regard to usage of slang terminology that Mekkar has picked up through time spent living overseas in North America. The same is true if Alf spoke Chinese to him, even more so when using casual lingo. Alf has three boys now and the middle one has come home attempting to apply new English words learned at school. The boys are required, as part of the curriculum, to learn and be proficient in another tongue that is away from their home region and part of the world. Part of the same unchanged educational standard that Mekkar, Alf, the youngest, Sirga, Henrik the papa, and everyone else experienced, where they grew up. Alf commented that the system wanted to instill more well roundedness to help individuals better prepare for the constantly changing international environment. The concept was that each person would eventually encounter interaction with people from very different places and new skills are always needed. Yet, Alf understands when he overhears English and bellows out, “I do not want to ever hear that in my house or my presence because it will never conquer anything that I can influence, which means you too!” He is almost militant regarding this, but no one knows why. Still, the man with vast vocabularies is mum on the subject. Mekkar chalks it up to plain cultural significance and prideful stubbornness, which he has in abundance also.