I appeared on Balancing Cultures to talk about my name, my family history, and my desire to build bridges between different people.


English Level: B1 🇺🇸🇨🇦

Show Notes:

  1. 01:05 Introduction
  2. 02:24  Being a “different type of us”
  3. 04:19 Jorge’s family background
  4. 7:50 Cultural background – belonging but being different
  5. 11:50 Being a bridge in society between cultures
  6. 14:32 How a name can connect you to your heritage – Jorge’s experience
  7. 16:40 Living in Germany with a Latino name – why it is a free pass to act differently
  8. 21:00 First time Jorge was called George
  9. 23:50 Identity in Canada as an immigrant
  10. 27:15 Character traits of first generation immigrant parents
  11. 32:15 Roles we play in life and how to navigate different cultural spaces simultaneously
  12. 34:57 Outro – Jorge’s podcast “The Canadian Wants to know”

Vocabulary Words:

  1. Heritage (noun) –(immaterielles) Erbe (Ideale, Wissen, Moralische Werte)
  2. Inheritance (noun) – (materielle) Erbschaft, Erbe (Haus, Geld etc.)
  3. cultural background (noun) – kultureller Hintergrund
  4. Calligraphy (noun) – Kalligraphie, Schönschrift
  5. Acknowledge (verb) – (etw.) anerkennen
  6. Simultaneously (adverb) – gleichzeitig
  7. Upbringing (noun) – Erziehung, mein Heranwachsen
  8. To encompass (verb) – umfassen, etw. beinhalten
  9. Assimilate (verb) – sich anpassen

Phrases to Remember:

  1. To relate to someone – To associate oneself with someone or something; to feel a sense of kinship with or similarity to someone or something.
  2. To get away with something –  to do something and not get punished for it
  3. To get rid of –  To discard, eliminate, or become free from something or someone.
  4. To play a role – To have a specific involvement or participation in something.
  5. To throw out a term –  To casually utter or propose something. To say something without really thinking about it.
  6. Name-calling – verbal abuse; a crude substitute for argument

Mistake to avoid:

Comprehension Questions:

  1. How does Jorge’s dad call him – nickname?
  2. Did Jorge want to change the spelling of his name?
  3. What is the first thing Jorge mentions that connects him to his parent’s culture?
  4. Which room did Jorge offer to his German visitor when she and her husband came to visit?
  5. What is a big part of Canadian culture with regards to different family backgrounds?
  6. Does Jorge speak Spanish or English to his brothers?
  7. What’s Jorge’s response when someone says, “Oh Jorge, I don’t understand those people.”?


Question to consider:

Does your name have a special meaning to you?


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