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Author Topic: Linguistic Mastery Thread  (Read 7761 times)
DonQuijote
Snr. Officer
****
Romania Romania


« Reply #75 on: June 08, 2008, 07:21:21 pm »

i wonder.... how many non-english/australian/canadian/american people around here (i mean people, that have another tongue as a mother-tongue than english) have surprised themselves writing to friends and using increasingly more english? i notice that even in my speech! friends tell me "stop talking in english!" every so often.... and more often every day.....no one?
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does clockwork dream of wind-up sheep?
Albrecht
Zeppelin Captain
*****
Germany Germany


Commanding Officer LZ-X1 Württemberg


WWW
« Reply #76 on: June 08, 2008, 08:17:55 pm »

i wonder.... how many non-english/australian/canadian/american people around here (i mean people, that have another tongue as a mother-tongue than english) have surprised themselves writing to friends and using increasingly more english? i notice that even in my speech! friends tell me "stop talking in english!" every so often.... and more often every day.....no one?
Grin I had a very nice experience once:
As my goodfriend Mechanicalmouse here on this board can testify to, I lived in Nottingham from 1997-2000. Once during a visit to my hometown in Germany I visited my grandma (she's the best, I just wanted to point that out) and in the middle of the conversation she suddenly looked at me as if I had suddenly grown antlers. I had switched to English in mid-sentence without noticing and she couldn't understand a word I said.
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cwoolbrightjr
Gunner
**
United States United States



« Reply #77 on: June 09, 2008, 04:14:39 am »

Mind you I'm not fluent in any language (even my native American English, all be it I have a loquacious vocabulary), I did at one time pride myself on the fact that should I have ever managed to travel abroad I could request the most basic of needs in the following languages:

Chinese
Japaneses
Spanish
French
Dutch
German
and for the possibility of space travel ... Klingon

and in case you were wondering the basic needs I deemed at the time were as follows:

American Consulate (sp?)
Food
Beer
Wine
Cigarettes
Police
Help
Water
Bathroom
How Much?
Telephone
Which way to ... (improvised)
Thank you
Please
(my personal favorite) That was nice do that again ...

Alas ... I never made it past the Mississippi. There was a plan to visit Europe at one point, (You know that place where the history comes from.) the plans just fell through ... damn relationships. That however is another topic for another thread.
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Keith_Beef
Snr. Officer
****
France France


« Reply #78 on: May 30, 2014, 01:31:16 pm »

I was watching "The Empty Hearse", the first episode of the third series of the BBC television series Sherlock, thinking "why are they speaking Serbian".

Later, Sherlock tells Mycroft that he didn't know that he could speak that language.

Mycroft answers "Slavic root, frequent Turkish and German loanwords… took me a couple of hours".

I'm no Mycroft, by any means, but with a good grounding in several languages and total mastery of one from the Western Germanic branch and one from the Romance branch, a good knowledge of linguistics and some determination I can learn the basics of almost anything in a couple of weeks.

The knowledge fades if I don't use it; my Indonesian is now limited to a few food terms (ayam, nasi, bawan, ikan, goreng, etc.).

But the knowledge comes back quickly; I thought I'd forgotten most of my Russian but then had a long conversation in that language with a Czech brewery rep a last year. At first he thought I might have been Czech because although I started out speaking to him in French, I pronounced the names of the beers perfectly. A Dutchman bar owner also mistook me for his compatriot a month ago; a noisy environment, he was having trouble understanding my French, so I asked for "twee flessen Duvel, alstublieft".

I don't consider myself to be exceptional, and I'm sure that with adequate teaching methods and tools we could all become masters of three of four foreign languages… the problem is that I don't know what those methods and tools are. They are almost certainly not the same for everybody, though; Rosetta Stone, for example, doest not work for me. Duolingo is quite a bit better, but still far from perfect.
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--
Keith
pakled05
Officer
***
United States United States



« Reply #79 on: June 01, 2014, 05:19:02 am »

Gad, has it really been six years?...Wink I barely speak American, (4 decades of life in the South), much less English...Wink Of course, as a married man, I seldom have the opportunity to 'speak,' much more often 'spoken to'...Wink
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Pantaleon
Gunner
**
Germany Germany



WWW
« Reply #80 on: June 29, 2014, 08:15:18 pm »

I am fluent in German and English, even to the point that often I feel more comfortable speaking English than my actual mother tongue...
My French and my Dutch used to be quite good as well, but since I don't use them any more I feel them slipping into oblivion.

I am most proud however that I am also able to write these languages in the corresponding 18th century cursive and medieval blackletter.
I dare say, German cursive is as much a piece of art as it is a cipher nowadays
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