Not all those who wander are lost

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sfuqua
Brown Belt
Posts: 1375
Joined: Sun Jul 19, 2015 5:05 am
Location: san jose, california
Languages: Bad English: native
Samoan: speak, but rusty
Tagalog: imperfect, but use all the time
Spanish: read
French: read some
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... =15&t=9248
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Re: Not all those who wander are lost

Postby sfuqua » Fri Jan 14, 2022 4:18 pm

This is a picture of the model of boat I sailed on. I got excited when I saw the picture, because the sail layout is exactly like Matthew, the fine little boat I sailed on.
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Pimsleur, Michel Thomas, anki decks
Spanish : 1700 / 13580 13580 cards
French : 450 / 13162 13162 cards

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sfuqua
Brown Belt
Posts: 1375
Joined: Sun Jul 19, 2015 5:05 am
Location: san jose, california
Languages: Bad English: native
Samoan: speak, but rusty
Tagalog: imperfect, but use all the time
Spanish: read
French: read some
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... =15&t=9248
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Re: Not all those who wander are lost

Postby sfuqua » Fri Jan 14, 2022 4:44 pm

Tahiti Ketch, you can get plans here https://duckworks.com/tahitiana-full-plans/
Building the boat is left as an exercise for the reader. :D
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Pimsleur, Michel Thomas, anki decks
Spanish : 1700 / 13580 13580 cards
French : 450 / 13162 13162 cards

User avatar
sfuqua
Brown Belt
Posts: 1375
Joined: Sun Jul 19, 2015 5:05 am
Location: san jose, california
Languages: Bad English: native
Samoan: speak, but rusty
Tagalog: imperfect, but use all the time
Spanish: read
French: read some
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... =15&t=9248
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Re: Not all those who wander are lost

Postby sfuqua » Mon Jan 17, 2022 1:07 am

My family and I are getting pretty distracted by covid here in San Jose. We are all vaccinated and boosted. We are wearing high quality masks. The cases are still increasing rapidly, but the rate of increase has stopped increasing. We're only 300% higher than last week's number of cases, not 800% higher like a week ago. We are a very well vaccinated community, and mask compliance is high, but...
My wife, a public school teacher, receives multiple warnings a day that she has been exposed to covid; my daughter, a high school student, gets about one a day. She tests daily, my daughter every 3 days. About 30%-50% of the students are missing each day. My wife just got a report from her principal that 50% of the students in the school were exposed on Friday and need to be tested during school on Tuesday (Monday is a holiday). She has to be tested before school, herself. Blessedly, we have mask mandates in our schools, and so far nobody in the family has tested positive. I doubt that anybody from my family will die from this wave; we are all very vaccinated, but long term effects... My wife is only a couple of months after a stent in her heart, they are still fooling with her medications.
In my extended family, my wonderful nephew in the Philippines, who is HIV positive, is battling covid right now for the 4th time.
Our leaders, who keep pretending that they know what is going on, don't have a clue. How could they? The news media are worthless. It seems to me that our country is incapable of responding reasonably to this challenge. We just lie and flounder and blame each other for the mess we are in. I am not impressed with my fellow human beings, especially my fellow citizens of the United States. The level of stupidity and selfishness many people are showing has reduced my already not too high opinion of humans. It's not like I have any brilliant idea about what they should do either. This is a very hard problem.

What does this have to do with language learning? I am finding it very difficult to take my language learning very seriously right now. I may park everything and just stare into space for a while. Or maybe just shadow things for a while. I will probably feel better when things calm down, which they will for a while before the next wave starts.

I'm more worried about my family than I am about myself, but I personally am not in great shape to face covid, if one of the ladies in my family brings it home from their schools. I had bad pneumonia last year (maybe covid, but I never tested positive), which left scars on my lungs, although it doesn't seem to have caused any permanent disability after a few months recovery. I also have atrial fibrillation, a heart that beats a syncopated beat instead of a regular one. Neither of these things slow me down much, if at all, but both make me more likely to die of covid. And I'm 68.

I actually plan to move very slowly for a while, and just try to get something done each day, but filling up big language bars seems dumb right now...
16 x
Pimsleur, Michel Thomas, anki decks
Spanish : 1700 / 13580 13580 cards
French : 450 / 13162 13162 cards

User avatar
sfuqua
Brown Belt
Posts: 1375
Joined: Sun Jul 19, 2015 5:05 am
Location: san jose, california
Languages: Bad English: native
Samoan: speak, but rusty
Tagalog: imperfect, but use all the time
Spanish: read
French: read some
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... =15&t=9248
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Re: Not all those who wander are lost

Postby sfuqua » Mon Jan 24, 2022 5:57 am

Just some quick notes since it's been a while...

I reread my last few messages, and realised that my main problem with ASSiMiL is the slow cards. I did an experiment, where I disabled all of the audio that I have associated with each card, and suddenly the cards became much easier to get through. I know that I'm only teaching myself to read with these cards, but reading is my main goal anyway.. I've got to figure out a quick way to do the active wave when I get to it. I probably need to work through a grammar workbook for French and Spanish instead of doing a bunch of too easy Michel Thomas cards. Michel Thomas is a quick way to review grammar, however.
I found another course to add to my anki deck, and shadowing mp3's for French, The Assimil French for Arab Speakers course. The book is in Arabic, which doesn't make much sense for me, but the mp3's are almost all in French, and I can do my usual process of making anki cards from a playlist file. There are just a few files in Arabic; the rest are in French.
I haven't been rushing to read huge numbers of pages, as stress and worry about the family are still taking up a lot of computing cycles in my brain. It is frustrating not to know what is going on, and to hear politicians, who seem to know even less, make pronouncements. Covid seems to have destroyed the morale of the society. Is our species making decisions now that will haunt us for thousands of years? Are we producing a generation of people with adverse long term effects? Is covid mostly done now, so we can get back to doing all of the things that we love to do?
I certainly don't know, and it is frustrating. All of my old science teacher reading just leaves me uncertain. I know that many people feel this way.
At least my wife, my princess, won't be teaching tomorrow; I have to take her to the hospital for a bunch of tests to try to figure out if they have done permanent damage to her liver with the medications they are giving her related to her recent heart procedure. Cases from the omicron wave seem to have peaked here, and I hope we can have a quick drop in case numbers, as many places have.
I hope my wife is OK, I hope she can be healthy and strong again soon. As I dropped her off at work the other day, I noticed that her hands were shaking a little. Too much stress. Too many students missing each day and too many lesson plans that had to be thrown out so that she could reteach the kids who came back to school from covid. And too many symptoms and trips to the doctor.
It's just too much.
I have an important lung test coming up in two weeks, which just adds to the fun.
Sigh, I realize that we're doing better than many people...
14 x
Pimsleur, Michel Thomas, anki decks
Spanish : 1700 / 13580 13580 cards
French : 450 / 13162 13162 cards

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Iversen
Black Belt - 3rd Dan
Posts: 3751
Joined: Sun Jul 19, 2015 7:36 pm
Location: Denmark
Languages: Monolingual travels in Danish, English, German, Dutch, Swedish, French, Portuguese, Spanish, Catalan, Italian, Romanian and (part time) Esperanto
Ahem, not yet: Norwegian, Afrikaans, Platt, Scots, Russian, Serbian, Bulgarian, Albanian, Greek, Latin, Irish, Indonesian and a few more...
Language Log: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=1027
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Re: Not all those who wander are lost

Postby Iversen » Mon Jan 24, 2022 10:37 am

My suggestion concerning the cards would be to drop the sound for now and get through the lot faster. You have probably listened enough to know how the language sounds, and then you can make a quick run through them later to refresh that memory. The important thing now is to learn the words.

As for covid: the omicron thing hasn't been around long enough to tell our researchers enough about longterm effects and the duration of immunity, but at least here in Denmark it seems that our politicians and the experts behind them have come to the conclusion that it doesn't serve any purpose to try to block its spread. We make more than 200.000 PCR rests daily and find up to 19% positives, which has given positive numbers above 40.000 in a population of around 6 mio. (and then you should add the quick tests, which aren't mentioned in the official statistics plus all those who aren't tested at all). Before January is over the majority of us will probably have been infected (including all the nonvacs) OR acquired the limited protection from a boost with the outdated vaccines (around 60% now), and the hospitals are now cutting down on the number of beds for intensive patients. The biggest concern now seems to be whether we can afford to let people stay in isolation for ten days - especially in schools, where it must be pure hell to do any planning when the pupils have infected a large proportion of their teachers. We are still waiting for the omikron vaccines, but when they come the pandemy may have run out of fuel by itself ...
4 x

User avatar
sfuqua
Brown Belt
Posts: 1375
Joined: Sun Jul 19, 2015 5:05 am
Location: san jose, california
Languages: Bad English: native
Samoan: speak, but rusty
Tagalog: imperfect, but use all the time
Spanish: read
French: read some
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... =15&t=9248
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Re: Not all those who wander are lost

Postby sfuqua » Mon Jan 24, 2022 7:02 pm

Weirdly enough, I seem to have had some sort of breakthrough in comprehending spoken French. I don't really think there was a sudden change; I think I just noticed growth that has been going on for a long time...
It came while watching a rather horrible Netflix documentary, November 13:Attack on Paris. What an awful story... :(
I randomly clicked on it, and was surprised to discover that I could understand much of it without subtitles. The language was simple and straightforward, and the topic was frighteningly interesting. I understood it much better than I expected. I tried several other things, and I seem to have better comprehension. So this is good, although I don't mean to claim that I somehow have advanced French comprehension all of a sudden. :lol:
But my French is better, even with the disorganised, on again, off again process I have been using.
And it means I can try more fun stuff in French. :D
9 x
Pimsleur, Michel Thomas, anki decks
Spanish : 1700 / 13580 13580 cards
French : 450 / 13162 13162 cards

User avatar
sfuqua
Brown Belt
Posts: 1375
Joined: Sun Jul 19, 2015 5:05 am
Location: san jose, california
Languages: Bad English: native
Samoan: speak, but rusty
Tagalog: imperfect, but use all the time
Spanish: read
French: read some
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... =15&t=9248
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Re: Not all those who wander are lost

Postby sfuqua » Thu Jan 27, 2022 2:17 pm

You know, you can only tighten things up so much before something breaks. My wife missed work Monday and Tuesday for tests on her liver and she left easy lesson plans for her class since she knew that random people would cover her class. Her boss wrote her a nasty memo about how he wanted more active teaching by the substitute teacher. Gee, I guess her lesson was too straightforward... She also saw her cardiologist, who assured her that it was basically impossible for her to have a heart attack, since her heart had been so thoroughly with the multiple heart catheterizations and multiple stress tests. The pain she was experiencing must be from something other than her heart. :o

Her heart attack started about 12 hours later, about 24 hours ago, probably a clot in a very small artery. She had classic symptoms, as she has had at least five times since her original stent. This time however, she started showing high troponin levels, and there was a lot more excitement about things by doctors. Her heart seems to be working fine, even if it is sending out messages that it is very unhappy. They are trying to dissolve the clot. So, my princess, my washboard abs, zumba dancing, karaoke singing, math teaching princess, had a heart attack, probably a very small one. Just before the pain started, she was spitting mad about her boss criticising her for her lesson plan for her substitute teacher. :evil:
You know, this is a very good period in history for people to be nice to each other.
Of course, that could be said of any time in history. :D

Because the hospital is in covid lockdown mode, I spent 12 hours in the parking lot. Most of the restrooms in the hospital were locked up, so I did 13000 steps just walking from where the car was parked to where the restroom was. I wanted to stay close, for the first hours, since we didn't know what was happening. I'm going to stay away this morning, since she seems stable. We can talk by phone.

Well, I did a lot of anki cards and read some French in the parking lot. I even made some German Assimil anki cards and did them. I think starting German would be madness, but German is such a cool language, and it is quite different from anything I've done before. I'll play with it some, but finishing my French and Spanish anki decks is the priority. I think I'm going to concentrate on reading French for a while. I think I can experience more growth there than with Spanish. Reading German is a long way away, if I keep playing with it. Portuguese would come faster because of the big advantage with vocabulary from Spanish.
By completing these decks, I would expect to be able to start reading easy novels in the languages involved. I am already there in Spanish, and almost there in French, but both of these languages were built "from the second floor up"; I got impatient and started trying to do advanced stuff before mastering the fundamentals.

Andi if I have learned anything lately, it is that I love fast anki cards. I get a lot of satisfaction when I can do 8 or 10 cards a minute, when it slows down to 6 a minute, I get bored and frustrated. :lol:

We fight on, we fight on to victory.
Last edited by sfuqua on Thu Jan 27, 2022 2:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.
15 x
Pimsleur, Michel Thomas, anki decks
Spanish : 1700 / 13580 13580 cards
French : 450 / 13162 13162 cards

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iguanamon
Black Belt - 2nd Dan
Posts: 2168
Joined: Sat Jul 18, 2015 11:14 am
Location: Virgin Islands
Languages: Speaks: English (Native); Spanish (C2); Portuguese (C2); Haitian Creole (C1); Ladino/Djudeo-espanyol (C1); Lesser Antilles French Creole (B2)
Studies: Catalan
Language Log: viewtopic.php?t=797
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Re: Not all those who wander are lost

Postby iguanamon » Thu Jan 27, 2022 2:47 pm

I can't believe that 22 years into the 21st Century that doctors still mis-diagnose heart attacks in women, and in one of the biggest cities in the US with some of the best healthcare in the country. I hope that your wife recovers soon and is back with her loving family soon. Sending y'all warm vibes from the Caribbean.
6 x

User avatar
sfuqua
Brown Belt
Posts: 1375
Joined: Sun Jul 19, 2015 5:05 am
Location: san jose, california
Languages: Bad English: native
Samoan: speak, but rusty
Tagalog: imperfect, but use all the time
Spanish: read
French: read some
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... =15&t=9248
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Re: Not all those who wander are lost

Postby sfuqua » Sat Jan 29, 2022 5:37 pm

If you are a woman, or if you are related to a woman, please make sure that her doctors take her symptoms seriously.
We had anti depressants and counselling suggested for her pain the same week as her heart attack.
No she is not hysterical. She is overstressed, like much of the world these days, and she is a perfectionist. Even though she doesn't look like a typical heart patient, she can have a heart attack

She is doing much better. They are pretty certain that there is minimal, if any, permanent heart damage. They dissolved the clot in time. They have changed her meds to stop another one. They have lón term treatment plans to remove the underlying cause.

I've actually been trying anki cards with TTS and with the speed of the TTS set very high. I like it. It even seems to be useful in that it forces me to understand the language in a burst. I've been surprised that this works even for unfamiliar languages like Portuguese. Apparently one can process a new language at high speed as long as the utterances are short.
I remember speedy FSI Spanish being very useful at one point and it reminds me of that.
10 x
Pimsleur, Michel Thomas, anki decks
Spanish : 1700 / 13580 13580 cards
French : 450 / 13162 13162 cards

User avatar
sfuqua
Brown Belt
Posts: 1375
Joined: Sun Jul 19, 2015 5:05 am
Location: san jose, california
Languages: Bad English: native
Samoan: speak, but rusty
Tagalog: imperfect, but use all the time
Spanish: read
French: read some
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... =15&t=9248
x 4667

Re: Not all those who wander are lost

Postby sfuqua » Sun Jan 30, 2022 11:57 pm

I'm not sure how they can continue to run the schools this way. The principal who wrote the nasty memo to my wife has covid now and is pretty sick. Several other teachers have covid also, and my wife had a heart attack. I'm glad I'm not an administrator. They had to do covid tests on 650 kids at the start of school on Friday.
I'm sure that it is a real safe work environment for someone recovering from a heart attack.
I can't wait until they start cranking up the pressure on everybody for the annual standardised tests...

I liked the comment I heard from a principal on TV recently. The interviewer was pressing him about how they could improve the performance of students after remote learning and a mixed up year from covid. She was demanding that teachers do something, because the "kids are falling behind."

I thought his answer was appropriate, "Falling behind who?"

I played around with Old English and Norse a bit, but I'm gonna get my regular anki deck done. Not much motivation to read right now.

Old English and Old Norse look good right now...
6 x
Pimsleur, Michel Thomas, anki decks
Spanish : 1700 / 13580 13580 cards
French : 450 / 13162 13162 cards


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