linguistic groups

  • the text: [uses cyberpunk as a means to sharply criticize the behavior of the United Nations in general but specifically the Belgian government and explore the tensions between both opposed political blocs and varied ethno-linguistic-cultural groups within the city of Brussels]
  • me, an ignorant American who literally could not find Belgium on a map if there was a loaded gun pressed against my forehead and my life depended on it: neat

anonymous asked:

what do I do when someone tells me Jewish isn't a race

Ah yes.  We know the type:

We don’t imagine the person who told you this will be intelligent enough to comprehend the following, but here’s the breakdown of how wrong they are:

1) There is no biological basis for race.  There is no gene that is exclusive to members of any one “racial” category.    The concept of “race” has been roundly rejected by geneticists and anthropologists as having zero scientific validity.   As anthropologist John Shea points out, “Race is folk taxonomy, not science. The variables used to organize it, such as skin color and hair texture, are arbitrary choices.”

2) If race isn’t a scientifcally-valid construct to describe reality, then just what is it?  It’s a social construct - something that doesn’t actually exist but that humans have taken a hold of as a way to organize their social world. As Brian Jones put it, race is real “…in the same way that Wednesday is real. But it’s also made up in the same way that Wednesday is made up.”

3) Because race is a made-up social construct, we prefer the term “racialized” as a term, since race isn’t something people are, it’s something that’s done to them - an identity foisted upon them.

4) Racialization historically has been super-arbitrary and what people think of as “races” varies with geography and time.  Since it’s not a scientifically-valid concept, country of origin, language spoken, and religious beliefs have all been used to determine what racial category one group or another has belonged to over the years - all in an attempt by the dominant “race” to keep “lesser races” subordinate to them.  For example, in the late 1800s, neither Italians nor the Irish were considered to be white.  There are parts of the word even today that would consider Catholics to be a separate racial category.

(above: anti-Irish racist propaganda from the late 1800s)

5) So because racialization is a social construct that changes with time and geography, Jews have previously been considered a separate “race” - certainly by the nazis in the most extreme and tragic example.  Karen Brodkin has written about how Jews in America “became white” in the 1940s.  Currently we are witnessing the racialization of Muslims in very much the same way that Jews were racialized.

So to sum up: race is a made-up concept that’s not substantively real or scientifically-valid.  Because of this, people have historically used all manner or criteria to try to delineate racial boundaries, including religion, language, and geographic origin.  Some of these, mixed with physical stereotyping, were combined to racialize Jews.  There have been other examples of ethnic, linguistic, and/or religious groups being racialized and we’re currently seeing the same thing happen to Muslims.  

I usually stay away from group discussions on FB… but in this linguistics group there was this NY Times article about bilingual language development written by a pediatrician. I wrote a comment saying it’s ironic that this specific article written by a pediatrician has no mention of an SLP. Then this lady starts arguing with me that I should not discredit the doctor just because he’s not an SLP, and SLPs aren’t always needed in language research blah blah blah. She even gave an example of what she thought was a non SLP article, but it was actually written by one of my SLP profs 😂. I think I schooled her well with my last comment (while apologizing so it softens the blow), but I’m a bit anxious to what she says. Someone plz tell me my original opinion was justified 😬

For a while now, I have been trying to wrap my head around why it is exactly that so much of the language and norms associated with the contemporary transgenderist movement bother me. I already know what my feminist concerns are with the very concept of being ‘born in the wrong body,’ but there was something more irritating and upsetting about the ways in which the words ‘woman’ and ‘man, ‘male’ and ‘female’ were being policed within the leftist community, which I’ve only recently been able to articulate.

The words ‘woman’ and ‘man’ (and their derivatives—men, manly, women, womanly, womanhood, etc.) are some of the most necessary, commonly used and understood words in the English language. If you were to learn English, whether as a baby learning their first language or as a student of ESL, these words would be among the first words you would ever learn. And these are ordinary words we all use every day—nouns (and adjectives) we use so frequently that they merit their own matching pronouns (he and she, his and hers, etc.) There is a commonly understood definition to these words which I would say 99% of English speakers all over the world understand, and it is this: man refers to adult male people, that is to say adults of the sex that have penises and testicles and who do not get pregnant, ever; woman is an adult of the sex that has a vagina and develops breasts, and though not every woman is capable of giving birth to children, and though no post-menopausal women can conceive naturally, all children are gestated and birthed by women and it is women who possess the only body parts necessary for pregnancy and childbirth, even if some of those parts in some women may not function fully.

Transactivists would disagree with much of this, but the point I’m making right now is that that factually is how 99% of English speakers understand the words ‘men’ and ‘women’ and their derivatives. The vast majority of English speakers, do not say ‘woman’ and actually mean “a group of people with any combination of genitalia and secondary sex characteristics, all of whom identify with some non-definable, nebulous concept of womanhood.” These words have meanings which have been unchanging for a long time, which carry a lot of emotional and cultural baggage (all of which it is important for feminism to unpack). But transactivists pull the rug out from under you by redefining words already in popular use, implying that even as people use these words with a certain common meaning in their minds, they actually mean a different thing, a thing which the common English speaker may not even understand; and that, in fact, these worlds have always meant what transactivists say they mean. That is to say that transactivists retroactively re-define the words ‘man’ and ‘woman’ such that they imply a 16th century person saying ‘man’ meant “adult with any combination of genitalia who personally identifies with the concept of manhood and manliness”; and that though literally no 16th or 17th or 18th or 19th and most 20th century people ever understood the difference between biological sex and gender, nor believed that one could choose which restrictive gender roles to fill based on an internal, private conviction rather than the one assigned to them at birth, those people, all throughout time and across the world, always either knowingly used language in a pro-transgender way, or was merely incorrect in their language use, even though these words were mutually understood to hold certain meanings by every single person who spoke English.

It is a deeply prescriptivist view of language which grants a tiny and elite group of academics situated in a certain point in time total authority over an entire language. I disagree with prescriptivism on a personal level, and that is a topic for another discussion, but even most linguistic prescriptionists would not retroactively and dramatically change the definition of the most commonly used and understood words in a language such that not only does the meaning become unrecognizable to the great unwashed masses who use the word every day, but even to elite academics from merely a few years ago. If transactivists want to have a word that describes a class of people who may hold any combination of genitalia and sex characteristics but whom all personally identify with manhood, or with womanhood, they can make up a new word, but what I firmly object to is the arrogant and condescending re-definition of the most basic words in the English language, words which 99% of people understood to mean a certain thing, and which transactivists now insist means something else, and has always meant something else. This linguistic disorientation quickly shuffles around words and definitions so nebulously and obscurely that transactivists simply refuse to define certain words in concrete terms, or describe them in terms that are a blatant tautology (i.e. a woman is someone who identifies as a woman, and they do so because they identify with womanhood, an experience defined by lived by anyone who identifies as a woman), or describes certain words as being only understandable by certain people (like ‘internal gender identity,’ some kind of immaterial, spiritual sensation that has nothing to do with gender stereotypes but which apparently most people such as myself never experienced), or defines certain words only to revoke the meaning of those words under certain circumstances (e.g. Joan of Arc, who referred to herself as a woman, used the word ‘woman’ to mean ‘biological female’ even though ‘woman’ means ‘person who identifies with womanhood’ but actually Joan of Arc was a transman and this particular case of language use is an exception).

Sometimes I want to ask transactivists and people who believe in gender as an immaterial, spiritual property: to what end is this hijacking of a language as it is commonly understood by the majority of its speakers? Does it bother you at all that the back-and-forth redefining of words, always retroactively changing the meaning of certain words or completely withholding the definitions of other words, is entirely characteristic of an Orwellian means of disempowering people by robbing them of the language used to articulate their own thoughts and experiences? Does it disturb you that language is how people structure much of their own thoughts, and when you muddy the waters of linguistic meaning and censor the use of certain words in their common context (e.g. don’t say women menstruate! don’t say mothers are the ones to give birth!) you gaslight people into wondering if their own thought system is organized enough for them to formulate an opinion of their own? The intentional creation of chaos, obfuscation and misunderstanding in genderist postmodern queer theory was supposed to be liberating, but instead it has provided the perfect weapon to the kinds of subtly abusive people who gaslight others and use constantly shifting linguistic norms to police group behaviour, to isolate and exclude certain people on a whim, and to render the articulated experiences of huge swathes of people meaningless, incorrect or deliberately misinterpreted.

“Latin is really inportant!” I say while giving you a swirlie. “It forms the root of the whole Latin linguistic group and it’s works form the origin of the Western canon!” As you get pantsed


Today being the last day of classes before exams, I decided to go treat myself this afternoon. This involved going to the linguistics section of one of my university libraries and reading for an entire afternoon instead of studying for my finals. 

There was lots of cool stuff, though, so it was totally worth it.

anonymous asked:

Hi! Could you recommend me any articles about minority or/and endangered languages? Thanks, and your blog is really lovely 💕

Hi :D

I usually read these kind of articles in Catalan, or sometimes in Spanish, since there’s quite a lot of material (in Catalan for obvious reasons, and in Spanish because it’s used by a lot of indigenous people from Latin America).

I can’t really think of any good articles about it in English right now. A good place to start would maybe be this article about minority languages in Europe, but also gives key points to understanding stateless nations and linguistic minority groups around the world. If you want something more general, maybe read Nations, States, and Stateless Nations from eurominority, which gives some useful definitions and examples from an objective point of view.

Maybe some of my followers want to recommend some good articles?

I will link some websites I read:

I hope you find this useful and sorry I couldn’t be more helpful.

Otoyomegatari: Part 2

Next is Karluk’s Town! Fun fact about the name Karluk, it’s the name of a nomadic Turkic tribal confederacy (who are closely related to the Uyghurs) and is also one of the six major branches of the Turkic Language Family (it includes Uyghur and Uzbek!) As I mentioned in my first post, Uzbek likely refers to the area he lives in (Uzbekistan) and Uyghur is probably his actual ethnicity and linguistic group (since there is no Uyghur country). I find it fascinating that both Karluk and Amira are ethnic minorities in their respective areas.

According to one blogger Uzbek and Uyghur are fairly close languages, about 65-70% mutual intelligibility. However, this is only when comparing Uzbek to the dialect of Uyghur spoken in Xinjiang Province, China. An Uyghur language spoken alongside Uzbek would likely be more influenced by the local language in both accent and loan words. This kind of Uyghur would likely have a slightly higher intelligibility, probably around 75-80% (in other words, Karluk understands Uzbek about as well as Amira understands Kazakh). As a point of comparison, many Portuguese-language TV channels will not put up (Portuguese) subtitles for Spanish-language interviews or sports programs, and vice versa; this is despite a comparatively low mutual intelligibility of 54%. Thus, Karluk can probably understand Uzbek quite well.

I bring up mutual intelligibility not only because it implies a certain level of harmony (or disharmony) between a particular minority tribe and the majority population, but also because this raises the question: Just how well can Karluk and Amira understand each other? Perhaps it was just me, but Amira’s obliviousness, blank stares, and few words in the early chapters gave the impression that understanding Karluk’s language and expressing herself in it took a bit of effort and “processing time”. This is supported from the same blog: “Uzbek and Kazakh are not intelligible, but there is an intelligible dialect between them.” Many Central Asians also commented that Kyrgyz/Kazakh is more difficult to understand compared to other Central Asian languages. This difference is also evident in how the two are categorized: Kyrgyz is in the Kipchak family and Uyghur is in the Karluk family.

However, judging by how much more talkative Amira is in the later chapters, I think it’s safe to say she becomes fluent in Uyghur over the course of the year she lives with Karluk. On top of this, with their home villages being relatively close to each other, I imagine their dialects have a higher intelligibility to each other than is the norm between Uyghurs and Kyrgyz.

As for where his village is, the best we have is:

Probably the area close to the gulf, with Kazakhstan to the west and Turkmenistan to the south and and east.

some facts about the middle east people should know
  • the Middle East sits on the crossroads 3 continents, the countries that surround it include (not limited to): Niger, Mali, Pakistan and China. As a result, people who are MENA (Middle East North African) are a diverse mix of European, Asian, African and Arab indigenous ethnicities so people from the middle east range in skin-tone and genetic traits. Not all MENA folk are lightskinned/darkskinned/olive-skinned, HOWEVER, MENA people should not be whitewashed, simply because many MENA folk pass as white.
  • Not all MENA people are “Arab”. Usually, someone defines her or himself as Arab because a) Arabic is his/her first language, or b) That person descended from the tribes of Arabia.So, the term “Arab” is actually a linguistic grouping, not ethnic or religious.
  • Not all MENA folk speak Arabic. Due to the fact the area of the middle east is so large, there are many languages spoken throughout i.e. Kurdish, Barber, Turkish, etc. Yes, Arabic is commonly spoken because of the spread of Islam, but it varies dramatically depending on where you are.
  • Not all MENA are Muslim. The media LOVES to portray all Muslims as Middle Eastern and visa versa. However, there are 100s of faiths throughout the middle east, including Judaism, Christianity, Baha'i, Zoroastrians, the Druze and many more. Indonesia actually has the highest Muslim population of any country in the world and it is not in the Middle East.   
  • MENA folk have had White People and other POC define our experiences, ethnicity and religion since the first days of Colonization (and even now with Aleppo). In the U.S. MENA are classified as White, though many/most receive exactly zero percent of the privlege, simply because classifying ourselves as White was the only way we were allowed into the U.S. I live in Australia and have grown up being called a wog, a n**ger, i have been denied jobs because of my heritage and hate airports for too many reasons I shouldn’t.
  • Unless you are MENA, the only thing you should do when it comes to MENA politics, issues, etc. is listen, learn and help where you can.
treasure hunters au

JinJin is (of course) their fearless leader. He knows all the mythologies, has studied all the lore, and is always thinking ahead to their next big find. Only some of his theories are crazy–and the others have learned to tell the difference between when JinJin has a crazy-but-lucrative plan and when JinJin is just chasing ghosts. No one wants another Ulloa’s Gold Incident.

While JinJin is always looking forward, MJ is the one who keeps track of where they’ve been. He logs everything, including detailed sketches of artifacts and locations, in journals. He’s not much for the more physical aspects of their job but is able to keep morale up when things don’t work out and is the only one who can talk JinJin down when necessary.

Eunwoo is the linguist of the group. He knows a lot of languages, even the dead ones. When things get a little too quiet and JinJin’s plans are moving too slowly for Eunwoo’s taste, he’ll tempt the others into chasing after a different prize. Unlike JinJin’s grand treasures and sunken ships, Eunwoo’s tend to be of more sentimental or historical value.

Moonbin is capable of charming local authorities in a pinch, but his specialty is cryptography. Since a lot of puzzles they come across are language based, he and Eunwoo work together often. When it comes to puzzles of any kind, Moonbin’s stubbornness serves him well, and he’s got a near perfect record of solving what he’s been given.

Rocky’s athleticism and martial arts background come in handy more often than any of them would like. Treasure hunting is a dangerous business, after all. But Rocky’s not just the “muscle” of the group–he got involved because he likes the chase. Things like locks and traps get in the way, so he taught himself how to pick locks and disarm traps.

Sanha is into cartography, so he’s good with maps and, oddly, navigating strange places without maps. No one is really sure if this skill is because he’s actually intuitive or if he’s just the most willing to charge forward without any plan whatsoever. But he’s gotten them out of multiple sticky situations, including the Ulloa’s Gold Incident, so no one really cares where where it comes from.

alternateastro | a new astro au blog 

Thing I want from historical linguistic bloggers:

* Proto-Controversial-Grouping, or why it didn’t exist but here’s arguments going both ways anyways

What I get:

* Examples of metathesis in Indo-European languages volume 12

I should be the change I want to see in the world

avhellens  asked:

Before when my book takes place, the country where it starts is an oligarchy with seven leaders. By the time the book starts, the oligarchy has been torn apart by political differences and the country has been divided into six parts (the seventh oligarch died). Can you think of a political way that the country would be torn like this? Thank you so much

Hi there!

There are a variety of ways a previously unified country may be divided into separate countries. It is not all that unusual for countries to break down into smaller countries. The divide may occur due to conflicting ethnic, cultural, or linguistic groups. If the 7 oligarchs each represented specific cultural groups of their country, it would be conceivable that they would dissolve into their own states where each of the former oligarchs rules over their own cultural group (and the 7th group being absorbed into their geographic neighbors). Alternatively, if there was conflict between the oligarchs, they may opt to divide the country into 6 pieces amongst themselves without regard to ethnic or cultural lines. This would almost certainly result in civil unrest and potentially violent conflict both within the new countries and between the new countries.

Thanks for the question! Hope this is helpful!

Honestly, a lot of the evidence for Celtibarians to be celtic is circumstantial (basically, “the romans say so”) and a lot of the evidence for Picts to not be celtic exists in that same framework of colonial knowledge (literally, “the romans didn’t say so”).

This is a super messy discussion because it doesn’t define celticness as an ethnic or linguistic group, which actually is a huge issue we *don’t* grapple with nowadays but would be an issue in antiquity.

But I think it makes clear how celtic people were understood as the peasantry of what’s now ‘Western Europe’ by colonial and imperial powers, namely Rome, but in many ways shaping a kind of economize ethnicity (or ethnized class?), in a three-estate system that survived in that region all the way up until the French Revolution.

And, it makes clear the coloniality inherent in defining “celticness”. There’s a clear historical process here of being conquered, called “kelotoi” or “celtae” or whatever, slated for eradication or assimilation, and then in almost all cases being eradicated or assimilated. Celtibarians fit that model. Picts ‘incohered’ as a meaningful cultural group without being conquered by Rome or England or France. So, they don’t.

anonymous asked:

why do you think there is no asian power thing?(as in white power, black power and islamic fundamentalism - i mean even indonesia which is pretty much the most muslim country in the world is comppletely against islamic fundamentalism)

there was. they worked very closely with groups like the black panthers and chicano power to form cross-ethnic coalitions. you may have seen these photos, for example:

External image

External image

further, in 1982, an Asian American movement formed in protest of vincent chin’s murderers being set free. helen zia asserts that this was the first true “asian american” movement; it was a moment that brought together disparate groups (chinese americans, japanese americans, filipino americans, etc) to a common cause.

in recent years student groups and conferences have been growing across the country. notable ones include ECAASU and NYCAASC.

but i would argue there are a multitude of reasons why these groups are not as “prominent” or visible as black power.

  1. the umbrella term “asian american” encompasses a wide range of groups who share little cultural similarities. black power is more “accessible” to many black americans whose family and cultural histories have been destroyed due to the legacies of slavery. chicano power and latin american groups share a linguistic thread. but many groups are still underrepresented in asian american studies and asian american activism, which has “traditionally” focused on chinese, japanese, and filipino experiences. none of our groups share a single common language, and we generally have closer ties to our cultural heritage due to immigration patterns. which leads me to
  2. the history of anti-asian exclusion. as i see it, there are two primary generations of asian americans: pre-exclusion, and post-exclusion. the communities that had been established before exclusion were the ones that produced the student riots of the 1960s. these were people like helen zia, richard aoki, grace lee boggs, yuri kochiyama, etc. but because of exclusion, there is a huge disconnect between their generation and those that immigrated post-exclusion: people like my parents, who came to ensure better life opportunities for their children, who hadn’t experienced the systematic racism of america and who were more worried about making a living than protesting, who may not speak enough english to understand the history of racism. like my mother now understands discrimination against the chinese but i’m sure she didn’t care when she first moved here to go to grad school.
  3. as i said above, there are many groups in the “asian american” umbrella who may not identify with asian american as a label. especially in the united states, where asian typically means east and southeast asian, south, central, and west asians may not identify as “asian american.” the framing of what “counts” as asian leaves out many groups that are the most disenfranchised (including hmong and bangladeshi americans for example). some asian groups face specific forms of racism that other asians don’t, such as islamophobia targeting many central and south asians (regardless of their actual religions). these are all groups who are left out of “traditional” asian american activism. and many who do use the term asian american do not understand its political implications. it’s a term that has been depoliticized, like the term “black” or “chicano” which were similarly terms used for political reasons.
  4. finally, asian american activism is simply not taught in schools. young asian americans do not know that it existed in the first place. they don’t know about japanese internment or chinese exclusion. when you don’t teach young people their own histories, how do you expect them to be politically invested in their own communities?


gems from my linguistics group
  • - "german is such an ugly language like they always sound so angry ??"
  • - "when we learned in class that there were tones i didn't believe it im just !!!!! is mandarin the only language with tones???"
  • - *I suggest that documenting endangered languages is a good application of phonetics* "ah yes, a good example of an endangered language is old English I would assume?"
  • - "apparently it's only in japanese where they make this weird throat sound to show agreement (I think she meant うん) and that to me is insaneeeee I can't even fathom how crazy that is" (she is forgetting that we have mhm or uh-huh in English which is not so drastically different from うん)
  • - "all british people trill their r's right?"
  • - *unable to come up with languages other than French, Italian, Japanese, English, Mandarin and Old English (????????)*

Space Latinxs, Snippet #1 (experimental)

So here’s a short-short of Poe discussing what it’s like to be a Space Latino. Since this is a world where a character can be named after a rap song, I figured using “Iberican” in place of “Spanish” and extending it out to encompass both the people and language in this fictionalized, necessarily-simplified, Star Wars universe would work. Iberican is a cultural/linguistic grouping, kind of like Hispanic or Latino is on Earth, and I’m going from there. (That kind of thing though is why it’d be awesome to get some feedback on what’s shitty to simplify and what’s acceptable. That kind of thing.)

(Oh also I’ve decided that homophobia isn’t really a thing so much in this ‘verse, not most of the time; being bi or fluid is kind of just normal. Because science fiction/fantasy, c’mon. Space Gays.)

Anyway. Set sometime after the events of TFA, when Finn is recovered. 

“No,” Poe said, and he looked a little wistful. “Not many people speak it around here. There were a few of us, at the Academy, but most of the others went into other specialties. For some reason not a ton of pilots wind up being Iberican, or speaking it well, so I don’t use it much now. Oh, but there was one time–” and he lit up with remembered amusement. Finn could watch the way his eyes crinkled when he smiled all day and never be bored.

“One time, I was out with a bunch of other Fleet pilots, right, we were out on this pretty remote posting, and we had a stopover on this godforsaken little planet.” He waved his hand dismissively. “Like, one real city on the whole thing, and they had like, two bars in the place, right?”

“Oh,” Pava said, “oh, gather ‘round, it’s a Wild And Crazy Dameron story.”

“It kind of is,” Poe said, amused. Sometimes he went a little tight around the eyes when Pava referred to his putative Wild And Crazy past, but but this time it didn’t seem to bother him. “So okay.” Suddenly everyone in the room was looking expectantly at him, and it would have made Finn nervous, but it didn’t seem to faze Poe at all.

“Okay. So we’re in this little shitty bar,” Poe said, “we got nowhere to be for the night. And it turns out this backwater planet is like, rotten with First Order. So there are all these First Order guys. And like, nobody’s in uniform, right, so it’s fine, it’s not anything we’ve got to really do anything about, right. But like. There’s some tension, and everybody’s hammered. And let me point out– man, First Order? They like to drink, okay? Don’t think for a second they don’t.”

Finn nodded, and suddenly everyone was looking at him. “Oh,” he said, “not me, I was a cadet still until like, a couple months before I got out, we didn’t get that kind of freedom. But if you were offworld you could get up to all kinds of shit.”

“So some of those guys might have been Stormtroopers?” Poe asked.

Finn shrugged. “If they were off-duty,” he said, “you wouldn’t know. What, did you all think we sleep in the outfit?”

“Kinda,” Pava said.

“Hell no,” Finn said, “that shit’s uncomfortable. If you’re offworld and your commander’s chill you can go to bars and stuff, we’re not robots. We don’t, like, sleep in pods whenever we’re not needed.”

“Huh,” Poe said, like that was a revelation.

“So what did you do to them?” Finn asked, a little twitchy at everyone’s regard.

“Oh,” Poe said, and lit up a little again, visibly taking back the mantle of The One Telling The Story. “So the thing about the First Order, right, they don’t let in anybody who’s not human, and even within that, they only speak Basic. So they’re just– they’ve got zero grasp of any other languages. They’re so set on one thing, you know?” and he made a gesture with his hand, as if delineating people in regimented rows, “everything the same, uniformity. So–”

“What’d you do?” Snap asked, leaning in.

“I pretended I didn’t speak any Basic,” Poe said. “I just stuck to Iberican the whole night. I forget how it started, I think I came in and I stepped in something or whatever, and I cussed in Iberican because I wasn’t thinking about it, and then I saw who-all was there and I just rolled with it. Me and one other pilot. She wasn’t a native speaker but she was fluent enough. So we just pretended we didn’t have any Basic at all.”

“Okay,” Pava said slowly, with a visible air of waiting for there to be more.

“So here’s the thing,” Poe said. “I mean, we weren’t in uniform, but like. Our jackets have Fleet insignia on them. It’s fucking obvious we’re Fleet pilots. And you know the Fleet operates with Basic as its standard language. So at the very least we’d understand it, right? And everybody knows that, and the First Order assholes know that. And I’m like, no comprendo, perdon, ¿habla Iberica? no hablo basico, no entiendo, ¿puedo le comprar una bebida? ah, tienes ojos tan bonitos.” 

Finn was entranced; he had never heard Poe speak anything but Basic, and it made his voice seem different, lower and more liquid, sweeter somehow, and it had to just be an impression but it really seemed so different.

“Wait,” Snap said, and he clearly had understood some of that. “Did you– hit on them?”

“I did,” Poe said, eyes crinkling as he grinned widely. “The guy who seemed to be in charge, he was this ginger-haired prick, all prissy-looking, and I just decided I was going to shoot the moon and go for it. I kept getting right in his space and bringing him drinks and trying to get him to talk to me, and I’m saying absolutely outrageous things, I’m licking my lips, I’m making meaningful eye contact, I’m just– I mean, the other pilot, she’d bet me money I couldn’t get the guy to make out with me. And I decided I was really truly going to go for it. So I gave him everything I had.”

“Oh man,” Snap said. “Like, you’re not even my type, Dameron, but I’ve seen you turn it up.”

“It can be hard to resist, I’m told,” Poe said, gesturing as if presenting himself. “I clearly wasn’t this guy’s type either. You can kinda tell. He was tall, he was probably into other tall dudes. Or maybe– broad-breasted women,” and he gestured, kind of circular-ly, in front of his chest. “I got that vibe. Anyway. I still gave him all I had, you know? I was dedicated to this bet. And his buddies thought it was hilarious. I mean, when they weren’t all being super-pissy that I wouldn’t speak Basic, and they said some pretty heinous shit, but like, that was the bonus– if I was pretending I didn’t speak Basic I didn’t have to actually acknowledge the really shitty things they said.” He shrugged.

“Well?” Pava asked. “Did you get him?”

Poe blinked at her, then guffawed. “Hell no!” he said. “We ended up fighting. We nearly got into it in the bar, and managed not to actually come to blows, but then when I left they tried to jump me in the alley. Which, to be fair, I’d kind of expected– they’d literally actually said as much right in my presence, because apparently they actually bought that I was somehow a Fleet pilot with zero Basic– so I was ready for it, and so were the others of us, and we wound up having a real corker of a barfight over it, but nobody died. And I knocked my ginger pal over and gave him a big fat kiss on the mouth before I left, so.” He shrugged.

This was greeted with general applause and laughter. Finn wondered how many uptight ginger commanders there were in the First Order, and looked over at Poe as he thought about how to ask it. Poe caught his look.

“Yeah,” Poe said, “I ran into him again.”

“Really,” Snap said.

Poe sucked his teeth, nodding, and then grimaced. “He was actually on the Finalizer,” he said, “when I got captured.”

Everyone fell silent. “Really?” Pava said.

Poe nodded. “He recognized me. He’s standing there all resplendent in black with leather gloves and the whole schtick, and he looks me up and down and he’s like, no hablo basico, eh?” Poe affected an impersonation of General Hux, looking down his nose and mincing out the foreign phrase. “And I was like, dude, that shit was hilarious and you know it.”

“Did he agree?” Pava asked.

Poe made a face. “No,” he said, “that encounter really didn’t go well for me at all.” He took a drink, grimacing. “But,” he said after a moment, brightening, “I made a friend after all,” and he reached over and grabbed Finn’s shoulder, pulling him in close.

Finn basked in that attention– everyone looking at them wasn’t so bad when it was both of them. He grinned. “That’s right,” he said. And then, on impulse, he added, “And even we thought Hux had no sense of fucking humor. Our Captain thought he was a prissy little fuck.”

“Did he,” Poe said.

“She,” Finn corrected. “Phasma. She had no time for him.” He reflected on it. “She wasn’t exactly what I’d call a broad-breasted woman, but she was a couple inches taller than he was, and yeah, I’d bet you anything she was his type. And she had no interest in that at all.”

“Taller than him,” Poe said, giving Finn a strange look. “He was pretty tall.”

“Oh yeah,” Finn said. “Phasma’s enormous. Highlight of my life was throwing her down a garbage chute on the Starkiller.”

That also got a good reaction, laughter and applause and high-fives all around. Best of all, though, Poe still had his arm around Finn, and Finn leaned in against Poe’s solid warm weight and soaked it in, marveling at the way this made him feel. Like he was part of something, like he was important.