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Sunday, November 2, 2014

Healing Words

when learning a new language, sometimes you just need some encouragement

18 comments:

  1. I went to a language café to speak Japanese. And I felt pretty confident the first sentence. But since I think I said it backwards, I pretty quickly lost confidence in my Japanese peaking skills.

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  2. That Grandma felt pity :D

    But still, I marvel at your persistance, Mr. Rempen!

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    1. Yes, probably. But old people generally speak worse English than younger people, so they think your German is way better than it is!

      Persistence is the only strategy that works, Mr. Ryzvonusef!

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  3. Great, the non-logged in comment form ate my comment while I posted. Another reason I realllly hate Blogger.

    So.

    This story reminds me very much of the time I went to Eindhoven and tried to order stuff in Dutch from the guy behind the Smullers counter. I asked him what the difference between a hamburger and a kipburger was, and he replied something along the lines of "Well, hamburger has ham, or actually beef, in it, and kipburger has kip."
    'But what is kip then?', I asked back and received a look that signalled to me that I must immediately switch back to a better-known language before I'm deemed crazy.
    'I mean, I'm not actually Dutch. Could you tell me in English?'
    "Oh! Chicken!"
    'I'd like to have a kipburger menu then.'
    "U spreekt maar heel goed nederlands!"

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    1. Sorry blogger ate your comment, by the way. I'm not the world's biggest blogger fan, but man, is it easy to manage. I tried using Diskus for the comments at one point but it handled importing old comments really poorly, and that's important to me.

      One of these days I'll learn wordpress...

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    2. Yeah, Discus is another pile of... :D

      Oh well, I learned to write a non-empty comment, press preview, then it'll log me in and I won't lose anything important :)

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  4. I'm getting to the age where I wouldn't know whether to be more flattered by the "your German is very good", or by the "young man"...

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    1. I think as long as you're not as old as the lady in the comic, you'd still be called "young man" by her!

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  5. The best thing about that is that Beamte get pissed at us native Germans as well when we don't understand their Amts-talk... They're just really annoyed by everything that even slightly slows down the process of getting you out of there as fast as possible ;P

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    1. Good! I'm happy to hear that you have to take part in that suffering

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  6. In my experience people fall into one of two extremes- either they are only used to hearing native speakers and anything less earns a comment like "Your Russian is atrocious" or they're so impressed that I'm learning their language that my Russian is "amazing" (even though all I said was 'Hello')

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  7. As soon as you speak a few words of the language in Korea, almost all the middle aged women, or ajumma, smile, clap their hands together and say "Aigoo! You speak so well!" It made me feel like the ajumma charmer.
    *wink* "Annyeonghasaeyo, ladies."

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  8. This is why I prefer speaking to people way older than me when I'm learning a language, they are so nice about it and say encouraging things, even when you both know you're horrible :)
    People my age just go 'dude, let's just speak English, I can't understand you, and it's just easier,'

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  9. This is really sweet. In the USA there's a lot of videos of old ladies yelling,"Speak English! This is America!"

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    1. To be fair, there are plenty of those old ladies in Germany, too...but not this particular one.

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