Let´s play with some music!

Another passion I have is MUSIC and I have been searching for songs which contain different languages. The first song that came to my mind was

Baila (Sexy thing)” by Zucchero

He is an italian international singer and not just one of the most popular in Italy, but also in Spain and Latin America as in the rest of the world. He likes to mix languages in his songs: I think it can be considered his own way of being international. (He has been singing here in Norway too and I even had the honor to have dinner with him after the concert, what an unforgettable experience!).

In this song he uses three languages: Italian, English and Spanish.

In the verse he sings: “La luna é un sole guarda come brilla/Baby the night is on fire/Siamo fiamme nel cielo/lampi in mezzo al buio what you say”

The refrain says: “Baila, baila morena!/Sotto questa luna piena/ Under the moonlight, under the moonlight”, and so on.

Another song which mixes languages is

Boa sorte (Good luck)” by Vanessa da Mata and Ben Harper.

They sing in portuguese and english:

“Tudo o que quer de mim/Irreais/Expectativas/Desleais/That´s it/There´s no way/It´s over, good luck/I´ve nothing left to say/It´s only words/And what I feel/Won´t change/Tudo o que quer me dar/Everything you want to give me/È demais/It´s too much/È pesado/It´s heavy/Não há paz/There is no peace”

The following song I chose is a latin american one

Peligro” by Aventura

He sings in spanish and english:

“Peligro/peligro/Que se libren los hombres de tu camino/ Danger/danger/You must be aware this woman enters in your eyes”

And I found also a norwegian song mixed with english

Hatere” by Admiral P and Onklp

It says: “De kan si det de vil og/gjøre det det vil og/la haterene hate seg selv for å si det helt mildt nå/gjør det de vil og/si det de vil og/Onklp og Admiral/we don´t give a shhhhit!”

So as you can see the languages have the power even in music, in order to let people get closer and involve them even with a sentence in their language, don´t you think?

Which “international” song do you know?



Let´s have fun!!!

Why do we smile every time a foreigner tries to speak our native language?

We smile because his/her pronunciation sounds funny to us, or am I wrong?

But today I propose to you a few italian tongue-twisters read by some foreigners who live in Oslo, because I would like you to listen to their different accents and underline the beauty of each. That means I laugh because every accent sounds incredible to me and I don´t laugh at them, to be clear ;D!

Here we have: Me (native italian), Cassandra (Spain), Javier (Venezuela), Alexander (England), Pam (North Carolina, USA), João (Madeira, Portugal), Gabriela (Brasil) and Gaurav (Norway). I chose the 5 languages I speak and I wanted to distinguish the spanish from the latin american accent, as well as the portuguese from the brasilian accent, to end with the english from the american accent.


Are you ready? Let´s have some fun:

Tongue-twister: “Una rara rana nera sull´arena erró una sera, una rara rana bianca

sull´arena erró un pó stanca”



Spanish from Spain-Cassandra

Cassandra pronounces a very strong “r” in “rana” and “rara” because  of the spanish tonic syllable but she doesn´t  in “erró“, while in italian when there is “double r” (/rr/) in a word, the sound is stronger. You can also notice that Cassandra “sings” when she reads, more than me ;D!

Spanish from Venezuela-Javier

Javier does the same thing as Cassandra but he also doesn´t distinguish the “b” from the “v“, because we know that both letters in spanish have the same sound and he adds the “e” to the word “stanca“, because all the words which start with “s” in italian, start with “es” in spanish, so for him it is hard to pronounce the unvoiced “s“+ “c” (/sk/).


English from England-Alexander 

Alexander has difficulties to read the first “sull´arena” because he can´t distinguish the “l” from the “r” but he doesn´t in the second one. He also doesn´t read the word “erró” with the accent on the “ó“,  and he has a light english accent.

For Pam I have another tongue-twister which underlines that in each language we have different sounds, here we go: “Tre trecce intrecciate tracciarono un tracciato intrecciando le tre trecce intrecciate”



English from USA-Pam

It is very hard for her to read the consonant cluster “tr-“, as we know in english the letter “r” has a completely different phonetic than in italian, she also reads the double “c“, in this case “-cce” (/tʃɛ/) “-ccia“(/tʃia/) in a lighter way. To end it is curious to notice that Pam reads “tracciato” following the english phonetic for the first vocal “a” (/ei/), so she says “treicciato“.

Portuguese from Portugal-João

We go back to the first tongue-twister:

João reads the words “rana“, “rara” and “erró” with the French r and his pronunciation is pretty nasal.

Portuguese from Brasil-Gabriela

She has a very soft “r” and as João she also has a nasal pronunciation.

For Gaurav I have a third tongue-twister: “Sessantasei sassolini assetati e sassosi si assetarono ad Assisi”




He reads like Gabriela with a nasal pronunciation and with a soft “s“; if you notice his “a” in each word, which contains this vocal, is closed. In fact in norwegian the “a” is closed. He also has difficulty to read the word “assetarono“, because in this case and according to the norwegian grammar, the “a” should be long.

I hope you had fun reading and listening to this article and of course I hope you liked it! 

I thank all my friends who helped me working with this post and gave me the permission to publish his/her voice. Isn´t it cool?




Five different pangrams

The word pangram comes from the Greek language (pan gramma) and means “every letter”; so a pangram is known as a short sentence which contains every letter of a given alphabet.

I decided to search for five pangrams according to the five languages I know, just because I was curious on the kind of sentence that could be constructed using every letter of a specific alphabet:


Pranzo d´acqua fa volti sghembi


El veloz murciélago hindú comía feliz cardillo y kiwi


The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog


Jane quer LP, fax, CD, giz, TV e bom whisky


Jeg begynte å fortære en sandwich mens jeg kjørte taxi på vei til quiz

Do you know pangrams in another language?

Be curious to learn!






Same words said in a whole different way

I picked TEN words with the same meaning but completely different writing in Italian, Spanish, English, Portuguese and Norwegian.

In these cases it is curious to discover, as we are in contact with languages that belong to the same linguistic families (Italian, Spanish and Portuguese are neo-latin, Norwegian and English are germanic), that there is no evolution or similarities between them.

Let´s check it out:

  • Fragola, fresa, strawberry, morango, jordbær
  • Fazzoletto, pañuelo, handkerchief, lenço, lommetørkle
  • Sedia, silla, chair, cadeira, stol
  • Maiale, cerdo, pig, porco, gris
  • Bello, guapo, beautiful, bonito, pen
  • Marciapiede, acera, sidewalk, calçada, fortauet
  • Cuscino, cojín, pillow, almofada, pute
  • Fiammifero, cerilla, match, fosforo, fyrstikk
  • Panno, trapo, rag, farrapo, klut
  • Frastuono, ruido, racket, barulho, lyd

It is amazing to train, improve and maintain a level of knowledge in each language in order to remember every word for every context. In fact, lately I decided to read a book in each language everyday:

Monday- Italian

Tuesday- Spanish

Wednesday- English

Thursday- Portuguese

Friday- Norwegian

Will I be able to learn more?

What do you do to train, improve and maintain a level of knowledge in the languages you know and speak?






Parola, palabra, word, palavra, ord

The word is the instrument of speech or writing we use to express our thoughts or feelings. It can also be a password, a command or a signal. It is always something that comes out!

In each language there are billions and billions of words but it is impossible to learn them all!

There are words, which, being the same, are used in different contexts having a different meaning and words that are “false friends”.

As we know a false friend is a word which is similar in two or more languages by spelling or pronunciation.

For example, as you can see I speak three neo-Latin languages and two Germanic ones, so it is very easy to be confused on which meaning has the same word I speak according to the language, such as:


1) PEGAR in Spanish means “ to hit, to strike or to stick”,

in Portuguese it means “ to take”.

In both languages, you write and pronounce this word in the same way but with completely different meaning!

2) TIRAR in Spanish means “to pull”,

in Portuguese it means “ to take, to remove”.

In both languages, you write this word in the same way but with completely different meaning!

There is a little difference in the pronunciation, which is in Portuguese the phonetic [ʈʃi’ɾaR].

3) FULL in Norwegian means “drunk”,

in English it means “full, filled up”.

In both languages, you write this word in the same way but with completely different meaning! The pronunciation, here, is similar: just consider a close “u” when you pronounce it in Norwegian.

4) GRIS in Spanish means “grey”,

in Norwegian it means “pig”.

In both languages you write this word in the same way but even here it has a completely different meaning!

And so on… I am not saying something new, because many of you who speak different languages like me know that, but what I am trying to say is that you need to practice each language to arrive to a phase where you distinguish each word/false friend in each language to not get confused anymore. Of course it is up to you if you want to arrive to a fluent level of a specific language!

It is curious and attractive the fact that the languages suffered such a kind of evolution by time and space. Every language is a world, it has its own rules and billions of exceptions and just thanks to the practice and the study you can learn them well.

It is also a bit messy but funny to use False Friends and easily get confused! ;D

Just pay attention when you translate or say or write a False Friend!

What do you think about a False Friend?

Which foreign languages do you speak?

How many False friends do you know and do you get confused using them?




Translation of your way of life

Since I love traveling and speaking languages, I always try to discover more and more of the world!



In fact, among the several places I have been for holidays, I had and I am having experience to live abroad. In 2005, for example, I moved from Italy to Spain where I lived 7 years and from Spain to Norway, where I am based since 2013.

What the expression “TRANSLATION OF YOUR WAY OF LIFE” means?

I think that each time we move to another country, we have to try to translate, in a way, our way of life and here I mean: translate to the target language our “native language” thoughts; our moves and our expressions; our lifestyle; the food, even if, in this case it is not translation but ADAPTATION!

But why do we have to translate our “way of life”?

Because of the different culture.

In my case, I am Italian and I live in Norway, both countries have: different cultures, languages, systems, culinary arts and so on; so I had to try to translate everything to let the others understand and know me! I have to try to translate my jokes to their culture, to give you an example, even if they don´t have the same funny message and of course my sense of humor will never be the same in a different place. But after 7 years in Spain I noticed that I had to translate a little part of my way of life, because in a certain way Italy and Spain are similar and after 5 years here in Norway, I had to translate a bigger part of it, because of the enormous difference between Italy and Norway. Isn´t it interesting? Diversity is attractive and beautiful.

Do you think does the translation of your way of life worth?

Definitely yes, because you can enrich your intelligence, your knowledge and of course your soul!

You live, in a certain way, your life in a foreign version! Don´t you think?