Sunday, November 13, 2016

The "I'm waiting for you to get it" Stare

Anyone who has gotten into a conversation with a native speaker of another language has experienced this phenomenon. It occurs most often for me when I try to show my husband a meme or some other funny post on the internet. I come over with my computer, expecting boisterous laughter and am met instead by silence. On my face is the "I'm waiting for you to get itstare. I know exactly what this stare looks like because I have seen it on his face many times when he shows me memes/videos/posts about futebol. It begins with a sort of expectant smile, expectant because it presumes it will blossom into a full blown laugh. Instead, it slowly dissolves into nothingness followed by a few moments of silence until one of us says "I don't get it" or the other starts explaining the joke.

In these moments I can actually see flashes of that unreachable (irraggiungibile sounds so much better) corner. It is so frustrating. Of course, anyone in a relationship knows how difficult it is to get a partner to understand your point of view, to really get you. But it becomes that much more difficult when the words are just not right or just not enough. 

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