“Borat” & Germans

So I watched Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan today. Before I continue, I will make a personal disclaimer. This is not my type of movie that I would typically watch. Prior to its arrival in theaters, I had no intention of watching it because I believed that it is a stupid movie with no point. I still stand by that after watching; it is a stupid movie but there is a point to it. Contrary to most [American] people belief’s, it is not a comedy.

So “Borat” was very interesting. I watched it with my German neighbor. Neither he or I had any intention of watching it but we were told to just watch it and understand why people are laughing. I admit, there were a few, and I mean FEW funny scenes in the movie. However, the whole time during the movie I was disguisted and left in shock as my neighbor was too. I could not believe the content of the movie. First off, besides the obscene and unnecessary content of the movie (anti-semetic, etc.) the movie was filled with stereotypes of how we Americans are. I could not believe that the people in the theater were laughing so hard at what was portrayed. They were essentially laughing at themselves.

“Borat” portrayed Americans as how we are seen in other countries and yet we still happen to find this funny. I do not find anti-semetism, racism, drunken college frat boys, among other things of the movie funny at all. And yet, Americans are not embarrassed at the fact of who we are. While we’re laughing at ourselves, people from other countries are laughing at us because of stupidy. No wonder America is disliked all over the world. For once can we Americans open up our minds and not be idealistic? Sometimes I wish I could get away and live in Europe. Granted not everything in Europe (e.g. secualarism) do I like, but their thought of others and themselves makes me wish why can’t America be better?

Speaking of Europe, I recently got to know my neighbor, Björn, who is from Germany. He is here in Chicago on an internship working for a Spainish food distribution company. It’s a shame because his internship ends this week and he is returning to Germany after spending 6 months here in Chicago. He’s a great guy and very interesting. Heck, I was teaching him how to play baseball this evening because he wanted to say to his friends that he played an American sport. Great guy, it’s just a shame that I don’t have much more time to get to know him.

I was hanging out with him last night and I met one of his friends who is also from Germany and here in Chicago on a different internship. Björn, Üli, and myself sat in a McDee’s for over 2 hours talking about cultural differences and sharing our experiences about Chicago & Germany. Definitely, one of the best chats I have ever had. It was Üli who told Björn & I to watch “Borat”. I’m glad I did, but now I’m even more disguisted at America. Hopefully, as Björn returns to Germany, I will still get a chance to get to know Üli more before he returns to Germany at the end of Febuary.

Otherwise, this weekend was surprisingly fun and eventful. Though “Fucking for Jesus” is still something that I don’t know if I could ever explain to another person.


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