Botando a Boca No Trombone

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Zeca do Trombone

A Lusophone is someone who speaks the Portuguese language natively or by adoption. As an adjective, it means “Portuguese-speaking.” The word itself is derived from the name of the ancient Roman province of Lusitania, which covered an area that is today Portugal.

Sousafone é um instrumento de sopro da família dos metais. Trata-se de uma tuba especial que o executante apoia no ombro para que possa executá-la enquanto anda ou marcha.

Here in Brazil, botando a boca no trombone (“putting your mouth to the trombone”) is an expression that means something like “going and telling the whole world about it,” “complaining loudly about something,” “blabbing it all over town,” “coming out with it.”

Think of our expression, “getting on the horn.”

This new blog of mine has in mind to do something of the kind with the news clipping on Brazilian business that I have fallen into the habit of doing lately.

As you may or may not know, I am a business and technical translator and journalist from Brooklyn, New York, living in São Paulo with my better half, the lovely Mina de Letras.

I am not exactly quite sure yet what I mean to do for a living down here, but in any event have been taking copious daily notes for a while now on Brazilian business news pra inglês ver (for non-New World Lusophones, that is) — compiling sources (reliable and unreliable), talking with local journalists, reading mountains of books, newspaper and magazines, downloading spreadsheets and prospectuses, and generally trying to scout the place out as thoroughly as possible.

Why not, I thought, not stick these running notes up on the Web? Without all the pasquinagem — satirical clowning around — I tend to indulge myself in on my previous blog, The New Market Machines.

Which has more or less outlived its usefulness to me, I am beginning to think.

Think of it a New World Lusophone version of NMM’s “open-source Bloomberg box” concept: How much good business intelligence can you dig up from open sources, and how well can you use free, open-source software to churn into some kind of useful form?

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