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Posted By P & L Blog


 Fallas 1


March 19th, the feast day of St. Joseph the carpenter, is celebrated in Valencia, Spain with the burning of large, papier-mache and plaster statues know as ninotsLas Fallas, or The Fires, is a five day celebration that culminates in the burning of the structures which satirize the famous, the infamous, and current events. 


The ninots can stretch several stories high and take up to a year to build.  On March 19 at midnight, the ninots are ignited simultaneously, destroying thousands of hours of work.  The festival is believed to have pagan origins, when fires were ignited for people to get rid of the old and to start anew.  It is probably no coincidence that this rite takes place on the eve of the first day of spring.



Fallas 2

Posted By P & L Blog




The U.S., Canada, and Australia are known for having large populations who claim Irish ancestry, but the the Irish diaspora also played a significant role in Latin America.


  • There are an estimated 500,000 people of Irish descent living in Argentina.
  • The Batallón de San Patricio, or St. Patricks's Batallion, was a unit of the Mexican army that fought in the Mexican-American war in 1846-1848.  Writings from the period said the batallion's flag carried two mottos: Libertad por la República Mexicana (Liberty for the Mexican Republic) as well as Erin go Bragh (Ireland Forever).
  • The founder of the Argentine navy was Guillermo Brown, William, born in County Mayo.  He led Argentine independence fighters in combat against the Spanish armada in 1814, and served in the Argentine navy for more than 30 years.
  • The first president of Chile was Bernardo O'Higgins.
  • The town of O'Brien in the province of Buenos Aires was built on land donated by Eduardo O'Brien, who was born in Ireland before emigrating to South America at 14.
  • Che Guevara's grandmother's last name was Lynch.  Che's father said, "The first thing to note is that in my son's veins flowed the blood of the Irish rebels".
  • Guillén de Lampart, born William Lamport in Ireland, was arrested and charged with plotting a rebellion to establish an independent Mexican state in 1642.  His possessions included a document he wrote that is considered to be the first  declaration of independence in the New World.


Erin go Bragh!

Posted By P & L Blog
The first day back at work after daylight savings time kicks in can be tough and a dreary, rainy day like today doesn't help. We work with people in other countries so we are always checking the time differences. Today I found a very useful graphic which shows what countries switch to DST (and I also learned that Saskatchewan and parts of Quebec, B.C., and Ontario do not)and when it begins and ends. You can access it here:

Posted By P & L Blog
My family said soda, but my cousins all called it tonic. They also called milkshakes "frappes" and the chocolate sprinkles we put on ice cream were "jimmies" in Boston. Differences in regional speech still exist in the US and an Ohio States graduate student has done a study on how Twitter can be used to track them. Did you know that Twitter users can be tracked within 300 miles of their location based on how they use language? Read more about how researchers have used Twitter to conduct linguistic research here: quirks-get-examined-on-twitter/




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