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AmSoc Forum February 2010

AmSoc Forum February 2010

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This is the February 2010 issue of the American Society of Sao Paulo's Forum newsletter. Visit www.amsoc.com.br to learn more.
This is the February 2010 issue of the American Society of Sao Paulo's Forum newsletter. Visit www.amsoc.com.br to learn more.

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Published by: bobmoser333 on Jan 27, 2010
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In This Issue
Get the kids into AmSoc sports this month
Page 5: Little League signups will be held this month. A variety of sports are a great way for AmSoc kids to spend their weekends. ebruary in Brazil means one thing to the native population: Carnaval. Work will stop, music will blare and vacations – be they long or short – are considered a must. For AmSoc members new to the holiday, there are plenty of ways for you to experience the traditional fun here in the city, or by taking a short drive across the state. Carnaval officially begins this year on Feb. 13 and runs through Feb. 17, but celebrations and personal vacations often start before or last long past those set dates. Sao Paulo’s International Newcomers Club has put together an all-inclusive Carnaval experience package for Saturday, Feb. 13, at R$275 per person for INC members and R$295 for non-members. The night would start with group transportation making pickups at a few choice spots around 8 pm that night (spots to be determined shortly before the 13th).

Monthly Newsletter February 2010 www.amsoc.com.br

Carnaval 2010 in São Paulo: lastminute ideas for AmSoc families


A wild 2009 for AmSoc sports
Page 6-7: Check out two pages of recaps on all things sports for AmSoc in 2009, and see what you can expect from AmSoc organizers in 2010.

Have your pet spayed or neutered
Page 9: An estimated 1.5 million dogs and cats are living in Sao Paulo’s streets. The overwhelming pet population is something you can help solve.

The INC group will enter Sao Paulo’s Sambadrome together, and have escorts with them from an affiliated tourist agency at all times to help make their way through the Sambadrome, and answer questions throughout the Carnaval parade. Drinks during the event are included. Members of the group also do not have to wait until the event’s end to leave together. Individuals or families can leave at any time, and with the help of the group’s coordinator a driver will be arranged to take them back to their home or apartment. All the transportation will be done by a private, secure group of drivers. Spots for the group were limited as of late January, so if interested call 2501-8038, or e-mail vpevents@newcomers-sp.com. br as soon as possible. Payment for tickets will need to be made immediately into the INC’s bank account. Sao Paulo’s Tourism(Continued on page 8)

Art in the underpass
Page 16: Sue Banman Sileci shares the details on her personalized tour of some of Sao Paulo’s most original, creative local artwork. A hint: Alleyways.

Our Mission
The American Society of São Paulo promotes friendship by organizing social, cultural and athletic events for its diverse membership; encourages integration with the Brazilian society; and supports the American traditions of education, philanthropy and volunteerism.

The President’s Corner
The end of summer break here in Brazil means school is back in session and the American Society is back with regular activities and By Tim Scott, AmSoc president opportunities. We look forward to seeing you at an upcoming event. Several of you readers are new to town and we welcome you. Beginning life here can be intimidating at first; getting connected with people and new communities is essential and we are honored that you have decided to join us here in the American Society. To all of you who are new, all who have just returned to São Paulo and to all who make São Paulo your home, we extend our “bem-vindo” and look forward to seeing you engaged in the community in the months ahead. You might ask, “how could I get engaged in the community?” In the American Society we like to think about this as applying our Helping Hands. Helping Hands in AmSoc is first of all a class of membership that applies 50 percent of your membership fee to help make a lasting difference in the lives of children in our 10 carefully screened orphanages.
Forum is published monthly, with the exception of January and July, by

Newcomer profile
Name: Brian Nicolopoulos Origin, Time Here: Chicago, Ill. I have been here for two years. Profession: I work for CH Robinson Brasil, an American multinational company in the area of Logistics. Why São Paulo?: I originally came through Sao Paulo not knowing much about the city at all, just as a tourist. I really liked the big city feel,the hustle and bustle, the restaurants, nightlife, sun and diversity. Best thing so far: Other than my amazing girlfriend, I love the warm weather, the beach, Brazilian culture and futebol. Early frustrations: I can remember taking the bus for the first time with a sheet of paper to show the cobrador where I needed to get off, and of course he forgot to tell me when to get off. Needless to say it was a mess trying to get back. I have various similar stories like this to look back on and smile about now, but at the time they were quite annoying and sometimes scary. Have saudade for anything back home?: Of course my family and friends are what I miss the most while living here. Also Chicago style deep dish pizza, Wrigley Field and having a car. I do like the pizza in Sao Paulo, but there is nothing like biting into a huge thick deep dish slice of pizza. The toppings are all put on the top of the pizza and two pieces are enough to fulfill your appetite for a meal. Progress with Portuguese: My girlfriend says I am fluent, but I think I am far from fluent! I generally understand pretty well but when it comes to speaking I a m i m p r o v i n g d a y b y d a y. Favourite place to hang out: : I love Ibirapuera Park, Shopping Malls, Vila Madalena bars and the movie theaters.

Secondly, Helping Hands is part of the American Society’s mission, encouraging you and me to support our philanthropic work, led by our Community Action Committee. Finally, Helping Hands is the attitude of volunteerism that helps make AmSoc a great organization. Besides the bountiful opportunities to support our Community Action Committee, there are many ways to apply your Helping Hands. How about Little League? On Saturday mornings during the school year, AmSoc sponsors children’s sports (baseball, basketball, soccer). We need fun-loving coaches to begin the new season in February. How about helping with our Cultural or Social Committees? The American Society regularly hosts social and cultural activities. We have enthusiastic committee chairmen in place, but do need your Helping Hands for support, working to create quality events for the enjoyment of our members. The American Society seeks to engage our membership in quality events and philanthropic work that builds a spirit of community, friendship and support. We count on your Helping Hands to join in with the activities I’ve listed above. Let us know of your interests by contacting the AmSoc office. Welcome to 2010! This is sure to be a year full of opportunity.
Bob Moser, editor Simon Tharby, staff writer 141 Preview, layout Ana Claudia Teixeira, editorial assistant Forum is printed by Intergraf. (www.intergraf.com.br)

About Forum

The American Society of São Paulo Rua da Paz, 1431 n 04713-001 São Paulo, SP Tel: (11) 5182-2074 n Fax: (11) 5182-9155 forum@amsoc.com.br

Views expressed in Forum do not necessarily reflect those of the American Society board of governors, members, or staff. Forum reserves the right to edit content for brevity and/or clarity.




The American Society of São Paulo

December AmSoc Eggnog Party a great time for all
The AmSoc Social Committee is working hard to set up a wonderful year of activities in 2010. Members can learn more about the Valentine’s Dinner on Feb. 14, and the St. Patrick’s Day Party in March by calling 5182-2074.




Tax time in Brazil and the U.S. – What ex-pats living abroad need to know
If you are a U.S. citizen or resident alien, the rules for filing your U.S. individual income tax return are generally the same whether you live in the United States or abroad. The U.S. Internal Revenue Code requires all Americans, citizens or resident aliens, living in the United States or abroad, to file U.S. income tax returns. Understanding the filing requirements If you are a U.S. citizen or resident alien and you live abroad, you are subject to tax on your worldwide income. However, if you meet certain requirements under Section 911 of the Code, you may qualify to exclude a certain amount of your foreign earned income (up to US$91,400 for 2009), plus a certain amount of your qualified foreign housing costs. In addition, Section 901 allows taxpayers to take either a credit or a deduction for foreign income taxes paid. Although Section 911 has been revised several times, the regulations have consistently required that a Federal individual income tax return be filed even if, due to the use of foreign earned income and housing exclusions or the foreign tax credit, there is no tax liability. You must also file a return if you owe any other taxes (such as Alternative Minimum Tax), or Self-Employment Tax (if you had net earnings from selfemployment of at least US$400) In addition, even if you do not otherwise have to file a return, you should file one to get a refund of any Federal income tax withheld or other credits. When to file The 2009 return is generally due April 15, 2010. An automatic two-month extension of time to file until June 15, 2010 is granted to file the 2009 return if, on the due date of the return, you live outside the U.S. and Puerto Rico, and your tax home is outside the U.S. and Puerto Rico. The automatic two-month extension also applies to paying the tax. However, interest is charged on any unpaid tax from the regular due date (April 15, 2010) until it is paid. Additional extensions of time to file 1) An automatic sixmonth extension (until October 15, 2010) is granted if you file Form 4868 by the regular due date of the return (April 15, 2010). The same form should be filed by the extended due date of June 15, 2010 to get an additional automatic four-month extension (until October 15, 2010) to the previous two-month extension. 2) In addition to the six-month extension, taxpayers who are outside U.S. can request a discretionary two-month additional extension to file (until December 15, 2010). To request this extension, you must send the IRS a letter by the extended due date of October 15, 2010, explaining the reasons why you need the additional two months. 3) File Form 2350 by April 15, 2010 (or June 15, 2010 if you qualify for the previous automatic two-month extension) to ask for an extension of time to file if you need the time to meet either the bona-fide residence test or the physical presence test in order to qualify for the foreign earned income exclusion and/or foreign housing exclusion. Keep in mind that unlike the original automatic two-month extension to June 15, none of these additional extensions extend the time to pay your income tax. Instead, they give you extra time to file, but interest will be charged on any unpaid tax from the original due

By Marcelo Calvoso, managing partner of Duncan & Associates

date of the return (April 15, 2010) and late payment penalty from the extended due date of payment (June 15, 2010), until it is paid. Finally, make sure that you understand and comply with your Brazilian income tax obligations. If you are a Permanent Resident (RNE holder) or hold a Temporary Work Permit, you should file a 2009 Brazilian individual income tax return reporting your worldwide income and declaration of assets. If you moved to Brazil during 2009, a Part-Year return may be required. The 2009 Brazilian return is due April 30, 2010, and no extension of time to file or pay the tax is available. In addition, you are also required to file a “Foreign Assets Report” with the Brazilian Central Bank, if on December 31, 2009, you had investments and/ or fixed assets outside Brazil with aggregate value of US$100,000 or more. The due date to file this report is yet to be determined. Marcelo Calvoso, managing partner of Duncan & Associates, in Sao Paulo, specializes in individual income tax preparation and consulting, with long time experience preparing U.S. Federal income tax returns. Contact him at 5572-5411, or mcalvoso@uol.com.br




The American Society of São Paulo

Little League signups and BBQ set for Feb. 6
Welcome back AmSoc families, it is time for Little League season to start up in São Paulo. Different from the Little League you might know back home, our activities are not restricted to baseball and do not include arduous trips in the car or extended weekend travel for stressed out parents. As with most activities in Brazil, our program is a little more laid back. Little league here is sponsored and run by the American Society and offers classes for your young ones in soccer, softball, basketball, tennis, and baseball (if interest is sufficient we may come up with a tag-style version of American Football as well). Activities are generally held on Saturday mornings at either Graded or Chapel schools depending on their availability and run in two time slots, allowing your young ones to participate in two sports if they so desire. Practices are run from 9 to 10:30 a.m. and then from 10:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Schedules are distributed at registration and will also be available on the AmSoc Web site. Kids are expected to be kids and we very much try to emphasize the fun aspects of the game and work on fundamentals while at Little League. Scrimmages will be held at the end of each session but the whole effort is supposed to be fun for the coaches and kids. We generally have more than 100 participants and your kids are welcome to come out and participate. Registration is Feb. 6, and we will be having open registration for little league as well as a BBQ (churrasco style) at Graded School (Giovanni Gronchi, 4710) from 10 a.m to 12 p.m. You can register at this time. You can contact Little League Coordinator Benton Kirk with further questions or doubts at Benton.Kirk@ adm.com or call (11)9381-7056.

Scottish Burns Supper the place to be on Feb. 6
The 2010 Burns Supper, set for Feb. 6 at the Clube Nacional, will be an even bigger event than last year’s very successful 250th anniversary of Rabbi Burns’ birth. The Burns Supper is a traditional Scottish event held every year across the world close to Jan. 25, the date of Burns’ birthday. It celebrates the life and works of Robert Burns, Scotland’s greatest poet. Burns was born in Ayrshire on Jan. 25, 1759, and died at the early age of 37 years, following life long health problems Through his poetry and song writing he helped keep the flame of patriotism burning in Scotland during a difficult period. At the time of his death he was a very popular figure in Scotland. Tickets are R$ 180 and R$150. Reservations and details of Scottish dance practices to brush up your favorite dances (not mandatory for the feint of heart!) can be found at www.standrews.com.br.

The ende-of-season awards day is just one of the unique, confidence-building features for children at AmSoc Little league.





Adult Softball saw the Cougars post 10-1 record, take home second AmSoc title in a row.
Last year´s AmSoc Adult Softball Championships were held on two Saturdays, Oct. 24 and Dec. 5, in Ibuina where the Brazilian national baseball team trains and plays its home games. Both dates included eight teams playing about 3-4 games each in an abbreviated round-robin schedule starting around 9:30 a.m. and going until around 4 p.m., including a BBQ each time that started at noon. The Oct. 24 mini-round robin games provided the seeding for Dec. 5., whereby two groups of four teams were organized to play each other first, followed by the first and second place finishers of each group to play in the semi-finals: i.e., the winner of Group A played the second place team in Group B, etc. In the end, after each team had played three games lasting more than four hours on two different Saturdays, the defending champs Cougars proved too strong for the Diamond Runners, led by the consummate athlete (and promoter) John Norwood, and his feisty group of players mainly from the U.S. Consulate. The Cougars completed a stellar 2009 season of 10-1, only losing to a tough Hamada team in April in the finals of the First Annual Charity Softball Classic. The MVP of the Championship was Howard Anderson.




The American Society of São Paulo

Highlights from AmSoc´s year of adult sports
The American Society of Sao Paulo completed an active year for competitive adult (team) sports, covering a variety of modalities: a flag football tournament in February, charity softball classic in April, a friendly baseball game in July, a golf challenge in August, softball tournament in October, tennis tournament in November and the softball tournament finals in December. Below is a summary of these events. And in 2010, AmSoc plans to follow this schedule and even add more tennis and golf to the schedule, so stayed tuned for the announcements! Jan. 31, 2009: The Annual Abacaxi Bowl took place at Graded School on Jan. 31 where more than 80 players and 25 spectators enjoyed the activities. The winner was PACA School, the defending champion, a team taht has amassed six championships in the past 10 years. April 4, 2009: At the Brasilian Baseball Federation´s Sports complex, the American Society hosted its first Charity Softball Classic whereby more than R$5,000 was donated to one of AmSoc´s 11 charities. The winner was a newcomer to the American softball events, Hamada, a Japanese team that regularly plays both softball (fast & slow pitch) and baseball in the mutinous tournaments in Sao Paulo. From that date a new bonding had taken place, because Hamada has not only been an active participant in AmSoc softball tournaments, but has invited AmSoc to play baseball on their over-35 and over-40 teams. July 4, 2009: Again at the Brasilian Baseball Federation´s Sports complex, this time the American Society challenged the experienced Hamada in a 7-inning baseball game, and only lost 15-11. Aug. 21, 2009: The 4th Challenge Golf Cup was held at the Terras de Sao Jose Golf Club in Itu, where the Americans (57) defeated the Scots (56). Oct. 24, 2009: The 1st Round of the 2009 Softball Championship was held in Ibuina, Where the Brazilian national baseball team trains and plays its home games. The results were:

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8.

Cougars AmSoc Consulate GM Hamada SMAB Devilz PACA

3 3 2 1 0 0 0 0

Nov. 7, 2009: David’s Tennis and Squash Club, in Santo Amaro, hosted AmSoc´s 2009 Tennis Open where 29 players joined in: 22 men and 7 women. LOSSES Everyone was paired to play doubles matches of six games each. From 10 0 a.m. to 4 p.m. all played six matches in total, mostly 0 with different partners. Women’s category: 1st Ann Marie Drysdale, 2nd 1 Andrea Pagliusoand 3rd Kristina Dooley. 2 Men’s category: 1st Rodrigo Drysdale, 2nd Ricardo Rubeiz and 3rd 2 Zack Henry Dec. 5, 2009: The 2 2nd and Final Round of the 2009 Softball Championship results 2 was held and the final results of the two-day 0 tournament were:

2009 Softball Championships Team 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. Cougars AmSoc Consulate Hamada PACA GM SMAB Devilz Wins 8 5 4 2 1 2 1 0 Losses 0 1 3 4 2 5 5 6


Pct. 100% 83% 57% 33% 33% 29% 17% 0% Champion




Carnaval 2010 in Sao Paulo: last-minute ideas for AmSoc families
(Continued from cover page) office says that a

special section at the Sambadrome, Section G, has been designated for international tourists and non-natives, with interpreters on hand and bilingual specialists available to explain the details and history of Brazilian Carnaval to first-time viewers. Carnaval in the “countryside” is often a very different type of party from the one you’ll see on television taking

over Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro and northeastern cities like Salvador. The following are a handful of small, rural cities in Sao Paulo state well-known for their traditional, family-oriented and very “G-rated” Carnaval experiences that you could drive to from Sao Paulo and back in a day. Themed groups parade through the city’s streets tossing candy and toys as spectators stand just feet away, offering a very personal, interactive Carnaval experience that you may not find in the big city spectacles. These parades are almost always free as well. The following are a few small towns in Sao Paulo state known for their friendly Carnaval traditions: São José dos Campos – One of the most important industrial and research centers in South America, this small, fairly affluent city lies about 80 km east of Sao Paulo. Vista Alegre do Alto – About 378 km northwest of Sao Paulo. Ariranha – 344 km northwest of Sao Paulo. Catanduva – About 390 km from Sao Paulo, learn more at

http://carnaval.catanduva.sp.gov.br/. Itu – About 108 km west of Sao Paulo, learn more at www.itu.com.br/ turismo/guia.asp

New members from November, December
We want to acknowledge all our new members from November and December. In addition, the age limit for the recently created “Junior” level membership has been raised from 25 to 30. Please help AmSoc recruit new, young members in Sao Paulo by promoting this low-cost, entry-level “Junior” category. For these newcomers, welcome to our family. There are plenty of great AmSoc events set in February to kick off 2010. COMPANY OR PROFESSION n/a Costa & Cambui Ass. Imobiliária Ernst & Young n/a Caterpillar n/a

NAME Monica Schmitt FREYRE Ernest JEAN-LOUIS and family Romero TAVARES and family Magda KELLY and family Andrew Douglas LOPEMAN Debbie HIRST

MEMBERSHIP TYPE Family Family Patron Helping Hands Family Patron Junior Single (renewal)

CITIZENSHIP Brazilian American Brazilian Amer.-Braz. American American



The American Society of São Paulo

Pet overpopulation in Sao Paulo should be a concern for all
The cat and dog overpopulation problem is serious in Sao Paulo. While official statistics do not exist, it is estimated that there are approximately 1.5 million dogs and cats living on the streets of the city. It may not be so obvious in some of the nicer neighborhoods of town, but as soon as you get a little closer to the periferia, it becomes impossible to ignore. Abandoned or homeless animals are not the only ones that suffer. Errant animals can cause car accidents, and cats and dogs can carry diseases that are communicable to humans, the most serious of which being rabies. The World Health Organization (WHO) declared in 1992 that without canine population control one cannot control rabies. Therefore, while it is certainly a humane goal to end canine overpopulation, it is also urgent for public health authorities. Sao Paulo and Brazil are not the only places where pet overpopulation problems exist. Even in the United States it is estimated that 4 million healthy cats and dogs are euthanized each year in shelters around the country. The problem is multi-faceted, and the solution includes educational programs as well as sterilization projects. Statistical studies indicate that in order to fully control a population, you need to achieve a 70 percent sterilization rate of the animals within a particular community. Once you reach the 70 percent threshold, the probability that an unsterilized female comes into contact with an unsterilized male is sufficiently small, and the population stops growing. The challenge is how to achieve that level. Animal population cannot be controlled by simply picking up the animals and killing them. If it is possible for an animal to survive on the streets (and in countries such as Brazil, where garbage and other sources of animal nutrition are readily available on the streets), as soon as you remove one animal from the location, another one will move

By Debbie Hirst, AmSoc member

in to take its place, and animals will continue having litters until the feeding capacity of the region is met. As long as it’s possible for animals to survive in the streets, there will be animals in the streets. In the United States, the general trend in reduction of street animals occurred simultaneous to the introduction of organized garbage collection programs, so there was no longer a readily accessible source of sustenance for the street animals. The traditional approach to sterilization has been surgical. For the last several decades a strategy of high-volume, low-cost sterilization programs has been adopted in a number of communities, with varying degrees of success. There is a particular surgical technique that facilitates this type of program (the incision is quite small and often times the only sutures are internal, meaning that the animal does not have to be kept overnight in the clinic or return for any follow-up care). This allows for the surgery to be quicker, and less expensive. Unfortunately there are not a lot of veterinarians who are interested in becoming adept at the technique required to perform high volume low cost surgeries, and it does in fact require a particular skillset that not all veterinarians have. The city of Sao Paulo has encouraged clinics to offer sterilization services,

specifically by promoting a program where clinics (and now NGOs) can become qualified to offer free surgeries to clients, and in return the city pays the clinics a fixed price for each surgery. The program requires anyone who is interested in taking advantage of the offer to go in person to the Centro de Controle de Zoonoses in Santana to register. For a city as large as Sao Paulo, and with a population as poor, this becomes problematic because many people simply do not have the means to get to Santana in order sign up for the program. It is a good start however. While high-volume low-cost sterilization surgeries may be relatively new in Sao Paulo (within the last 10 years), there have been similar programs in other countries (most notably the U.S.) for several decades. By and large, the evidence has shown that even with aggressive surgical sterilization programs, it is very difficult to get to a point where you are no longer killing unwanted animals. Most likely, additional solutions will need to be found. One of these is chemical sterilization, via an injection and not a surgery. Some products already exist and are being used in various countries. In Brazil a product exists for male dogs. The benefit to this type of sterilization is that you don’t need to do it in a clinic, it is much less expensive than a surgery, and you can achieve a very high volume in a short time, therefore facilitating getting to the required 70 percent sterilized level which will achieve effective population control. The product is new, however, and is not being widely used yet. Two good sources of information on the topic and where you can adopt a cat and dog if you are interested are www. arcabrasil.org.br and www.institutoninarosa.org.br. Hirst is the owner of spay/neuter clinic Centro de Planejamento de Natalidade Animal, which can be reached at www.cpna.com.br, or 5631 0713. Learn more about injectable sterilants at www.infertile.com.br.



10 unforgettable Brazilian dishes you’ve never heard of
You’ve most certainly heard of, or have even tasted, churrasco (barbecue) and feijoada (a complex meal that includes a stew of black beans with pork and several side dishes, including rice, collard greans, peeled orange, cassava flour, red pepper sauce and our national distilled liquor, cachaça). Now, can you tell me what a buchada de bode is? Or pato no tucupi? Here I list 10 classics, not necessarily easy to digest, but amazing windows to Brazilian culture. For links with recipes, find this story repeated at http://deepbrazil.com : 1.Barreado – Typical of the coast of the southern state of Paraná, it probably originates from the Portuguese Azores islands. This meat stew served with rice is prepared in a very peculiar way. It is cooked in a clay pot for around 20 hours – the time needed for the meat fibers to be dissolved in a thick sauce. The pot is layered with banana leaves and its outside is covered with hardened manioc flour paste, in other to avoid letting the heat escape.

By Regina Scharf, guest contributor

bell peppers. It has a side dish of fish puree. Typical of the state of Espírito Santo. 5. Pato no Tucupi – This duck dish is made with tucupi, a broth of scalded cassava and the same jambu used in tacacá, which means it also has that weird numbing effect. It is typical of Belém, by the Atlantic coast of the Amazon region. 6. Buchada – This one is not for the faint of heart. Made with the billy goat’s internal organs, that are cooked and used to stuff the animal’s stomach. 7.Tutu à mineira – This is one example of the very traditional cuisine of the state of Minas Gerais. It is a cooked black bean puree mixed with cassava flour. It is served with boiled eggs, sausages, rice and collard greens 8. Canjica – This porridge made of white corn, milk, cinnamon and sugar is particularly popular in June, during the big festivals for Saint Peter, Saint John and Saint Anthony (festas juninas). 9. Acarajé – You cannot visit Bahia and miss the acarajé. Originally from Nigeria, this cake made of peeled black-eyed peas is deep fried in palm oil (dendê). It is split in half and stuffed with shrimp, cashews and different pastes, namely vatapá.

pes at home! I found a few books on Brazilian cooking published in English , in case you feel adventurous. These two seem above average: – Eat Smart in Brazil: How to Decipher the Menu, Know the Market Foods & Embark on a Tasting Adventure, and – The Art of Brazilian Cookery (Hippocrene International Cookbook Classics) If you try any of these recipes, please, tell me how it worked out. And bom apetite! Regina Scharf is a Brazilian-born freelance journalist who writes for various news outlets in Sao Paulo, and blogs in English at http://deepbrazil.com.

2.Cuscuz – Despite having the same origin as the Moroccan couscous, it looks and tastes very different. In São Paulo, where I come from, it is made with corn flour, olives, tomatoes, eggs, peas, sardines and has the look of a decorated cake. 3. Tacacá – This numbing yellowish cassava soup includes goma (a cassavabased transparent gluey substance) , dried shrimp and jambu, a plant that causes a weird anesthesia effect on the mouth. Very hot, it is served in a cuia, a bowl made of a local fruit. Omnipresent in Manaus, it is typical of most of the Amazon region. 4. Moqueca capixaba – A hearty fish stew with tomatoes, onions, pepper and

10. Brigadeiro – This huge hit is always welcome at children’s birthday parties. It is a type of chocolate truffle covered with chocolate sparkles, named after Brigadeiro Eduardo Gomes, an air force brigadier that was a candidate in two presidential campaigns in the late 1940s. Good luck in case you try this reci-




The American Society of São Paulo

Angel Party leader fills calendar Adopt a pet with volunteerism
Eileen Tasso first heard about the Vi l a A c a l a n t o Orphanage two years ago, through some friends who were volunteering there. Since then, she has worked as a liaison for Vila Acalanto on AmSoc’s Community Action Committee. This role involves staying in contact with the orphanage, and assessing and helping to meet its needs. AmSoc’s role in the provision of new flooring is one recent example of practical support she coordinated. Tasso, also responsible for recruiting volunteers, was eager to point out they are looking for more people now. The most rewarding aspect of this work is the time she spends each week with the children there. “They are just so lonely,” Tasso explained. “They are just so happy to see you.” Coordinating the AmSoc Angel Party was the highlight of Eileen’s year. This remarkable event is the largest on AmSoc’s calendar, and entertained 220 orphans from 10 different organizations (see December Forum for more details). Organizing this event included, to name but a few aspects, the many corporate sponsors and other agencies and their respective donations and services, 220 gift bag and cash sponsors, and the 190 volunteers who helped on the day. The party was a major success for Tasso as a coordinator, though she was keen to emphasize, “It wasn’t just me – I had a committee!” Her favorite memory of this day? “Giving (the children) gifts – they never get anything.” Besides her current liaison role, Tasso has volunteered for the Viva Jovem AmSoc project, teaching English to teenagers. She also helps out at her son’s school, recently advising on the ‘Walk for Humanity’, a fund-raising event for the ‘Habitat for Humanity’ scheme, which builds homes for the less fortunate.






I love you, man!
By Bert Frost, former AmSoc president I attended a Brazilian birthday party this weekend. I enjoy hanging out with my Brazilian friends. We talked about the ancillary items like traffic, food and the latest type of gripe each suffer regardless of nationality. As the evening grew longer and the crowd thinner, we hit on subjects of the heart. A child’s illness, lack of sleep and aging (being at a birthday party, I guess that is natural). Attending the party were mostly Brazilians, a number of Europeans and the token Gringos (my wife and me). As I watched the party progress, I was made aware of a cultural nuance. The culture of hugs. I am an American from the central part of the U.S. The only guy I hugged were my fellow football players after a big score. I hardly remember hugging my dad. We shake hands to this day. “Hi dad, how are you?” Hand shake. “Fine son, how about those Cowboys?” I always mean to convey warmth with a handshake, but am uncomfortable with the emotional expression of a firm hug. Not our Brazilian friends. They are huggers. Back to the party. I observed five types of hugs/greetings during my male bonding moment. They are: 1. “Glad to have you here, we are friends” hug – This is the hug where you shake hands with the right hand and use the left hand to pat the guy on the shoulder. A nice gesture, kind-of-a semi-formal greeting. Comfortable for the cold Europeans and Americans. Actually, the Germans were calling their comrades “Heir Doctor” and were even more formal and stiff in the handshake. Even less emotion than my dad and me. 2. “I like you, we are good friends” hug -- This is the greeting where you place your right arm over the guys shoulder and pat the guys tummy while talking. I have to admit the first time I received this warm greeting I was hoping it only lasted a few seconds. Now I am a regular passer of the Tummy Pat greeting. This is also the greeting you receive when someone invites to you to a churrasco at his house for the tenth time. Another Brazilian way of communicating friendship is to invite you to a churrasco at the persons home. It may happen and it may not. But the fact that an invitation is extended means you are an ok guy and your Brazilian friend considers spending a Sunday afternoon with you. 3. “Kissing a woman other than your wife” – Whether an introduction or encountering a friend, a male-tofemale greeting is a gentle kiss on one or both cheeks. The problem starts when you return to the U.S. and you are so used to this greeting that you bend forward to kiss when you see a female friend. Not a good idea to continue this cultural greeting when in the U.S. or in the office. 4. “Woman friend greeting a female friend” – Kiss the air, do not kiss the face. It might mess-up the make-up. 5. “I like you so much I will give you a bear-hug” hug – This is the greeting you receive when you are a great friend and the wine has been flowing. When we were leaving the above mentioned birthday party, I was on the receiving end of a great big bear hug. We hugged, patted each others’ backs and then rocked back and forth for a special effect. I was ok with that. Then we told each other what good friends were are and wished each other health and life for many years to come. The heebee geebees only started to flow when I was close enough to smell his breath. I wanted to exclaim, as in the old Budweiser commercial “I love you, man!” The Brazilians are wonderful and expressive. Whether emotions are flying over a traffic incident, a disagreement or appreciating true friendship, they let it all hang out. We can learn a few lessons from them. This column has been reprinted from a previous Forum issue.

Individual or Groups

COURSE English Spanish Portuguese ANY TIME !

WHERE Company Home University

www.englishintheoffice.com.br relationship@englishintheoffice.com.br Phone: 011 – 50443859




The American Society of São Paulo

Bullying in the new millennium
By Mike Whipple, vice-consul, American Citizen Services, U.S. Consulate in Sao Paulo Whether a child lives in a small town in Iowa or a megalopolis like São Paulo, chances are he will eventually have to deal with a bully. While bullies have always existed, the advent of our new connected world has given rise to a new breed of bully. Unlike a traditional bully, a “cyberbully” employs technology to cause harm. Cyberbullying is bullying through the use of technology. Cyberbullying can be much more destructive than traditional bullying because there is no escape for the victim. In the past, if there were a fight on the playground, after the fight, the kids would go home and that would be the end of it. Home used to be a child’s sanctuary from bullies. Now, the fight is likely to show up on YouTube for the rest of the world to see. Cyberbullies are not limited to harassing their victims in person. They can send annoying or threatening emails, texts or instant messages (IMs). A cyberbully can also invade a victim’s social networking site and post derogatory comments or embarrassing pictures. From a victim’s perspective, it can seem like the cyberbully is everywhere. Some parents who are not very techsavvy might feel helpless assisting a child dealing with a cyberbully. It’s easy for a parent to get overwhelmed with today’s technology. It may be easier to keep in mind that what kids do hasn’t changed, only how they do it has. Children used to pass notes in class, now they text. Teens used to buy records and CDs, now they simply download their music. Many kids used to write in journals or diaries, now they blog. Kids are doing pretty much the same thing, just with different methods. Cyberbullies are no different. A cyberbully is simply a bully using technology to harm his victim instead of force. Cyberbullies employ multiple techniques in order to bully their chosen victims. Some bullies will post embarrassing pictures without consent. More troubling is when a cyberbully steals a password to assume another’s identity. Cyberbullies also often inundate their victims with threatening or harassing emails, IMs or texts. The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) recommends that if parents are concerned that their child may be a victim of this type of bullying, they should look for the following signs. If a child goes from using his computer and cell phone constantly to not using them at all, it could be a sign that he is afraid to use them. Acting nervous when receiving emails, IMs or texts is also an indicator. Also, seeming to be uneasy about going to school and withdrawing from family and friends could be symptoms of a bigger problem. NCMEC suggests several steps to take to deal with this problem. First, if the child is in imminent danger, contact the authorities (police, school) immediately. If the threat does not warrant that type of action, parents should instruct their child not to respond to incoming messages from the bully. However, save all messages in case they are required at a future date. Most social sites allow a user to block or ban certain individuals from making contact. This option should be employed. These sites often have privacy filters that should be utilized as well. It also might be prudent to create a new account. Finally, the parent and child should report the cyberbullying to school officials. NCMEC also offers advice to families to help minimize the escalation of this type of bullying. It suggests establishing clear rules for internet usage. These rules can include which sites the children are permitted to frequent, to whom they may “talk” and how much time they may spend online. It is also advised to keep the computer in a common room. Parents also need to remind their children of the importance of keeping their passwords secure. And, by far, the most important action a parent can undertake is to be involved in the child’s life. It’s ok to be nosy, ask questions, find out what they’re doing and stay engaged. The information in this article was adapted from a presentation created by The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. This organization has some wonderful resources available for parents, young children, tweens and teens. For more information, check out its Web sites atwww.netsmartz.org and www. missingkids.com.

Don’t forget BOTH Valentine’s days this year
While most of the world, including the U.S., celebrates Valentine’s Day on Feb. 14, the holiday’s equivalent in Brazil won’t show up on your calendar until June 12. “Dia dos Namorados” is, to put it lightly, a big deal in Brazil on June 12, with the exchange of candies, flowers and gifts between couples a standard tradition. Hotels and restaurants fill their reservation books months in advance. Just a friendly tip from your AmSoc Forum staff, it may be beneficial to do something special on both dates.




H ousing
Furnished Apartment for Rent Vila Nova Conceição. São Paulo’s best place to live. Near Ibirapuera Park. Modern building with sports facilities, heated swimming pool, three bedrooms (one suite), a living room with terrace, complete kitchen, maid’s bedroom and bathroom, big service area, two parking spaces. Fully furnished with all appliances. Telephone included. Call Alex or Eliane at (11) 3849-7085 or (11) 8635-7788, or send an e-mail to alex@caboverde.com.br. Ubatuba Beach Rental AmSoc member rents charming bungalow or luxurious villa in high-security gated community. Large sweeping yard, incredible ocean view, complete privacy. Available weekends or weekly. www. ubatubaescape.com. American-Licensed Psychotherapist In this busy and ever-changing world, people often feel stressed and overwhelmed with no place to turn. Psychotherapy/ counseling can provide a safe place to receive professional guidance and support. Brief or longer term therapy offered depending on your needs, goals and expectations. Services: individual, couples, child/adolescent. Certified to conduct Adoption Home Study for American Citizens. Contact: Pamela Wax, MSW/LCSW at 5051-5988 or 9656-2106. Located in Moema. American Psychologist Services for Expats Sukie Miller Ph.D. early director of Esalen, former Board Member Jung Institute San Francisco, 35 years experience private practice as coach, psycho-therapist with adults and couples in eclectic approach to personal/professional growth, woman’s’ issues, adjustment São Paulo, goal setting, dream work, anxiety. Call Dr. Miller at 119823-8730. email sukiemiller@gmail.com. Argos Dog Kennel Traveling? What about your dog? Argos Kennel Hotel could be his second home in the country. Food, water, and shelter with lots of love and personal care. No lonely kennel for him, but our home and the freedom of a spacious garden. Fetch and carry service. English and French spoken. Call Jean or Christine at (11) 4661-1430 or (11) 9687-1815 or send an e-mail to jean.chris@uol.com.br. Embu Guaçu, São Paulo. Domestic Help American Society family relocating to USA. Want position for Lindaura Aparaecido Neto 7406-0334, wonderful cook, laundress and household cleaner, of 7 years. Excels at all 3 services. Her hours are 7:30 AM to 3:30 PM. Monday- Friday. Prepares all meals. Reasonable salary. For info. contact Stephen/Luciana Taber 3813-2793/8368-0599. Math and Science Tutor Former Graded and Chapel teacher, with 20-years experience, tutors Math, Physics, Chemistry, and Science for all levels, including but not limited to the IB, IGCSE, SAT-I & II, AP and Brazilian vestibular. Elementary and middle school students are also welcome (all subjects). Call Fernando Knijnik at (11) 2533-3965 or 9134-6700. Personal Trainer I will come to your home, office, or workout facility and create an exercise/fitness program tailored to your health concerns, fitness goals, and schedule. For adults and children, individuals or groups. Sessions in English, Spanish, or Portuguese. For more information please contact Daniela Franco at (11) 9739-6191 or dsf29@hotmail.com Psychotherapist for Ex-Pats Serving Adults, Children, and Families (also couples) struggling with all adjustment issues. Specializing in issues of divorce, separation, and reconciliation. Many years experience with drug/ alcohol issues. USA-licensed as MFT. Jungian Analyst experienced in Sandtray, Dreamwork (groups also), and Cognitive/ Behavioral therapy. Please call/ email Matthew: 7734 5793 or mvanlokeren@yahoo.com for a free initial consultation. Selling Up Go with a pro! We have been selling household goods for families, individuals, and companies for 17 years in São Paulo and nine in Brasilia for embassies. We have hundreds of pre-selected clients wanting to buy from you, safe and sound! Send an e-mail to meredithsales@zaquie. com or zaquie@zaquie.com or call (11) 5908-1144 or (61) 9211-1819. Ask for Ms. Zaquie Meredith. Taylor Real Estate Luxury spacious houses, apartments and penthouses Sales and rentals. Ten years experience with expatriates. Furnished and unfurnished. Trilingual Real Estate agents. References from consulates and multinationals. Photos sent by email. Relocation Service. Consult the site: www. taylorimoveis.com. E Mail - taylor@taylorimoveis.com Phone: 5511 3079 8888 and 5511 8774 5100 (Maria Elisa)

S ervices
American-Licensed Clinical Psychologist Heloisa Garman, Psy.D. U.S. Licensed Clinical Psychologist (covered by U.S. health insurance). Bilingual, with extensive private practice in Chicago and former therapist at the Family Institute at Northwestern University. Treats individuals, couples, and families. Specialized in anxiety, depression, cultural issues, and adjustment disorders. Call Dr. Garman at (11) 7179-9723 or 3898-2330 or send an e-mail to hcbgarman@aol. com. American-Licensed Expat Psychologist Richard Morhaime, Psy.D. offers skilled psychotherapy for children and adults. He also provides complete diagnostic evaluations in English for children with academic or behavioral difficulties, featuring individualized recommendations for school and home. For more information, contact Dr. Morhaime at 5538-0099 or 9669-8057 or visit www.expatpsychologist.com.




For more information about this month’s AmSoc events (highlighted), visit www.amsoc.com.br.

The American Society of São Paulo

February 2010
3 Wednesday

IMPORTANT DATES: 13-16 Carnival / 14 Valentine’s Day (in USA) / 17 Ash Wednesday

INC Monthly Coffee AmSoc Little League Sign-Up & Churrasco Burns Supper at the Clube Nacional Abacaxi Bowl

For more information visit www.newcomers-sp.com.br Check out our Web site for more information: www.amsoc.com.br For more information visit www.standrews.com.br Visit www.amsoc.com.br to learn more, or call the office at 5182-2074 ASAP to learn how to sign up for the big game. For more information visit www.newcomers-sp.com.br









INC Red Rose

11 12

Thursday Friday

CIWS Lunch

For more information visit www.ciws.com.br

Vancouver 2010 Olympic For more information visit www.vancouver2010.com Games start Carnival INC Monthly Luncheon Sampa Community Church Coldplay in concert NOFX in concert Check out the story in this Forum. For more information about Brazilian Carnival visit www.justbrazil.org For more information visit www.newcomers-sp.com.br Visit any Sunday at 10:55 a.m. Directions at www. sampacommunity.com At Morumbi Stadium. Visit www.ticketmaster.com.br for availability. At SESC Santana. Visit www.sescsp.org.br to learn more.

13-16 24 28 2 4

Sat - Tue Wednesday Sunday March March

A classified of up to 50 words costs R$40 for AmSoc members and R$75 for non-members. To place a classified please call (11) 5182-2074 from 8:30 a.m. until 1 p.m., or send an e-mail to amsoc1@americansociety.com.br. Forum does not check all of the advertisers appearing in this newsletter. We urge you to use these services; however, thoroughly check prices and services prior to finalizing any service or purchase agreement.

A Note to Our Readers

Place a Classified



Alleyways, underpasses hide gorgeous art worth your time
I love this city. I love it so much I’ve even done presentations on why I love it. But every time I think no one loves São Paulo like I do, I meet someone even more passionate about it. While showing By Sue Banman Sileci, some friends the AmSoc member Gaudi House in Paraisópolis two weeks ago, I met Flavia Liz Di Paolo, a full-time professional tour guide and fanatic about this city. Within minutes of meeting each other, Flavia was figuring out what my interests were and suggesting places to visit. I’d never been to any of them and, sadly, never even heard of a few of them. And so, in honor of São Paulo’s 456th birthday in January, I treated myself to one of Flavia’s personalized tours. It was hard to decide what to spend an afternoon doing. She knew so much about this place. A general city tour? The history of my neighborhood? Architecture? A tour for children? Famous designers? Bird watching? Exclusive jewelry? In the end, we decided to spend a few hours investigating São Paulo’s street art culture. Why not? I occasionally make clunky bracelets using my own beads and run-over bolts and screws I’ve picked up while walking the dogs. Paulistano street artists like Os Gemeos are making it big around the world, painting castles and showing their work in New York galleries. Till Feb. 5, MASP is having an exhibit of street art and, of course, many parts of town are covered in graffiti. To be clear, this isn’t pichação. You know the spray-painted lettering and symbols that covers this city? That’s pichação. By “graffiti”, Brazilians mean the bits and pieces of art we all see in random corners of the city – stenciled women, wildly distorted animals and swirly flowers on corners, telephone poles and doors. We went to see graffiti. Flavia’s tour, which included door-todoor service in her car, started as soon as we left my garage. She pointed out every major or minor landmark along the way to our first appointment, with savory bits of history and trivia. With so much information, I tried to take notes but gave up, hoping to remember a fraction of it. Our first stop was in Perdizes, at the home of Jaime Prades, one of São Paulo’s original street artists. Early in the 1980s, Prades and other artists were among the first to transform Vila Madelena’s gray walls into street museums, risking jail, police harassment and other unpleasantness to express themselves. Now nearly 50, with teenage daughters, a home with a swimming pool and a cluttered atelier, Prades is more formally employed, having created a cast of exuberant characters called the Absurdos for the Playland amusement parks. He still paints here and there in his neighborhood, but, besides the Absurdos, Prades’ main artistic focus right now is artificial trees made from recycled furniture and bits of lumber. He’ll soon install a forest of them

Fellowship Community Church
The Welcome Place since 1921
Phone (11) 3253-7609 www.fellowship.com.br

at the SESC Itaquera. Why? “I can’t do anything else,” he said. Flavia then drove me to Vila Madelena where we met one of the directors of the Cidade Escola Aprendiz, an afterschool program for more than 1,000 children focusing on art, culture, education, communication, technology and community action. Escola Aprendiz takes care of a strange little alley between Rua Padre João Gonçalves and Rua Belmiro Braga. This alley features section upon section of art, owned by no one and everyone at the same time. Street artists choose a spot and paint their murals. This, along with the Beco de Batman (Batman’s Alley) on Rua Gonçalo Afonso and Rua Harmonia features some of the best example of São Paulo’s graffiti – painted, sprayed and air brushed, layer upon layer, changing every six months or so. On a subsequent trip to Batman’s Alley, I met a young artist, Tche, who was in the process of repainting one his walls. It was a Sunday afternoon and, like most artists, he has a day job. Tche works with road signs. When I asked if this was how he normally spent his weekends, he responded, “Yeah, what else can I do? Look at this empty wall.” Hot and tired, Flavia and I had a glass of juice at a local bar before moving on to our last stop, Choque Cultural, an art gallery in Vila Madalena that showcases underground artists not (yet) known to the general public. If you’re interested in taking home a piece of São Paulo’s weird and wild, Choque Cultural offers a chance to do it. I felt a little embarrassed for not already knowing what Flavia taught me that afternoon. But then, she has a degree in the history of São Paulo, for heaven’s sake, has lived here all her life and shows this city to the likes of the governor of Minnesota, Austrian TV stations covering the Pope’s visit and Poland’s Minister of Foreign Affairs. And any of us. Flavia speaks six languages and charges R$100 an hour for a four-hour tour. Split that with three friends that can fit in her car with you and there’s a whole lot of São Paulo for your buck. I plan to call her again. After all, I do love this city. Contact Flavia Liz Di Paolo Tel: 8119-3903 / 3032-2692 flavializ@uniqueinsp.com www.uniqueinsp.com

09:00 am - Walking in Faith Classes (English and Portuguese)


10:30 am – Worship Service (English only) 06:00 pm – Culto em português

Conveniently located on Rua Carlos Sampaio, 107 – Bela Vista Just a block and a half from the Brigadeiro Metro station on the Avenida Paulista

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