Sunday, November 21, 2010


I don't really know what hoor means, but I use it anyway. I know that's dangerous, mainly because, to my untrained ear, it sounds a lot like both the Dutch and English words for whore. I know it means hear, so I figured it was used either like the "Hear Ye, Hear Ye" old-fashioned newsbearers use it or like the Southerners and their "Y'all come back now, ya hear?" As it turns out, it is exactly neither of those things, but rather placed at the end of a sentence for dramatic effect. Unfortunately, it is used in much the same way as if one were to actually call me a whore, which has led to a few miscommunications. My first few weeks in Belgium, with my utter lack of Dutch skills, went a bit like this:
"Je moet het wel doen hoor."
"Hoor, not whore."
"Wie hoer?"
"Who whore?"
"Met mijn oor."