Back to the roots and water them with coffee

Continue or start your personal language log here, including logs for challenge participants
User avatar
rdearman
Site Admin
Posts: 5535
Joined: Thu May 14, 2015 4:18 pm
Location: United Kingdom
Languages: English (N)
Language Log: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=1836
x 14534
Contact:

Re: Back to the roots and water them with coffee

Postby rdearman » Sun Nov 29, 2020 3:32 pm

Eddie izzard does his show in French, and Paul Taylor is another English comedian who does French.
4 x
Anyone who thinks assembly language programming is difficult, obviously hasn't used Rust.

The Autodidactic Podcast
The Lollygagging Podcast

aaleks
Blue Belt
Posts: 800
Joined: Thu Apr 13, 2017 7:04 pm
Location: Russia
Languages: Russian (N)
English ( ? )
learning:
Italian, German, French
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... =15&t=6724
x 1585

Re: Back to the roots and water them with coffee

Postby aaleks » Sun Nov 29, 2020 4:08 pm

Cavesa wrote:It sometimes amuses me (and sometimes annoys me), that the general language learning public (both online and offline) counts only with the pleasant situations. They talk about getting your post across, about some rich friendly discussions, and so on. They even recommend each other to just avoid the mean and judgemental people. Those, who will treat you as less intelligent, and who will abuse your language weaknesses to win an argument. But those are not always avoidable. Nor should you always try. They are a part of life and the real "language exam".


I think, it may depend on one's current level in the TL. For instance, I met mean people when I just started making the first attempts to write in English and struggled to string a couple words together. Those people weren't native speakers, though, but just other non-natives from a forum for English learners with a better command of English than me. When I came here after three-four months of such "teaching" I was afraid to write in English and kept doing it because I didn't want to give up. But every time I would post something I would be terrified and then surprised that someone was able to understand me. Now those not-really-kind remarks wouldn't affect me so much as it used to be before but I still don't feel confident in my English. I'm just not so scared and... I don't expect much from myself, I guess. When I butcher my English now I like - "okay, I can't do any better anyway". I think at some point I just lowered my expectations. I guess, mean people may be uhmm... useful when one's already had a high level of the TL, that's when such people may become like some kind of a challenge. I guess, it may vary from person to person, though. I just wanted to say that I can understand the advice to avoid mean people, at least at the earlier stages. I'd give the advice to myself if I could go back four years ago :) .

And, no matter what I wrote above, congratulation on passing the "C3 exam"! :)
4 x

garyb
Brown Belt
Posts: 1274
Joined: Mon Jul 20, 2015 12:35 pm
Location: Scotland
Languages: Native: English
Advanced: Italian, French
Intermediate: Spanish
Beginner: Greek, German
Language Log: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=1855
x 4035
Contact:

Re: Back to the roots and water them with coffee

Postby garyb » Sun Nov 29, 2020 7:51 pm

Cavesa wrote:It sometimes amuses me (and sometimes annoys me), that the general language learning public (both online and offline) counts only with the pleasant situations. They talk about getting your post across, about some rich friendly discussions, and so on. They even recommend each other to just avoid the mean and judgemental people. Those, who will treat you as less intelligent, and who will abuse your language weaknesses to win an argument. But those are not always avoidable. Nor should you always try. They are a part of life and the real "language exam".
I completely agree with this (if I've understood your point correctly as it's not completely clear to me!), and one of the reasons I got sick of most language learning blogs and Youtubers years ago is that they paint such a rosy picture of learning a language with encouraging native speakers, stimulating interactions, and no worse hardships than making some clichéd "embarazada"-style beginner mistake and then all having a good laugh about it and living happily ever after. Truth is, I don't think you can reach a high level in a language without frequently taking a lot of shit from people, embarrassing yourself, and having your intelligence insulted, all with a large dash of xenophobia! It's all part of the process although some people do seem to be able to take it on the chin or even be quite oblivious to it, and more power to them. I've always respected you for not being afraid to tell the bad parts as well as celebrate your successes like you are now.

And on that subject, congrats on the progress! It's amazing to see the power of input, practice, and persistence paired with immersion.
3 x

User avatar
Montmorency
Brown Belt
Posts: 1035
Joined: Tue Oct 06, 2015 3:01 pm
Location: Oxfordshire, UK
Languages: English (Native)
Maintaining: German (active skills lapsed somewhat).
Studying: Welsh (advanced beginner/intermediate);
Dabbling/Beginner: Czech

Back-burner: Spanish (intermediate) Norwegian (bit more than beginner) Danish (beginner).

Have studied: Latin, French, Italian, Dutch; OT Hebrew (briefly) NT Greek (briefly).
Language Log: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=1429
x 1159

Re: Back to the roots and water them with coffee

Postby Montmorency » Sun Nov 29, 2020 8:35 pm

garyb wrote:
And on that subject, congrats on the progress! It's amazing to see the power of input, practice, and persistence paired with immersion.


Absolutely. And on the topic of immersion, I was recently watching an (oldish) talk on Youtube from one of the Polylot gatherings on the topic of immersion being possibly counter-productive. The question of the value of immersion has also cropped up more recently in a thread in another part of LLORG.

The message seems to be that immersion in itself is never a copper-bottomed guarantee of success. It all seems to lie in what the individual does to take full advantage of that immersion, as Cavesa clearly has.
4 x

Cavesa
Black Belt - 4th Dan
Posts: 4063
Joined: Mon Jul 20, 2015 9:46 am
Languages: Czech (N), English (C1), French (C2), Spanish (intermediate), German (somewhere on the path), Italian (passive advanced, active basic)
x 12577

Re: Back to the roots and water them with coffee

Postby Cavesa » Wed Dec 02, 2020 7:02 pm

Yes aaleks, I agree that avoiding some kinds of situations and people at first can be good, the beginners need to get more confidence, but this approach ends, when you start becoming more yourself-like. When you want to get to a higher level, you can no longer just use the foreigner card in case of trouble. And encountering the unpleasant people and situation is the price for simply functioning in the new language outside of the small bubble usually meant for the foreigners. You can't choose to meet just nice people in your native language either.

Thanks, Garyb. Seeing and naming the unpleasant stuff doesn't usually make me too popular. But I believe it is better to be warned and prepared, than to imagine a paradise and then clash with the reality. As a result, I don't really struggle with a cultural shock, not more than had I stayed in my home city.

Yes, I agree with Montmorency, the immersion by itself is not the miracle many people take it for. I may have picked a little bit of an extreme version, but it was certainly very useful and I recommend anybody to strive for authentic experiences. Unfortunately, I think many people confuse the immersion opportunities and a typical expat life. We've recently talked about this, both can be great. But on the language community forums and even in the offline world, people seem to not make a clear distinction between these two very different settings.

But for anybody considering moving abroad: think about what you really want. Both the authentic immersed life and the expat life come with some value, with some advantages. But don't expect to get just the advantages of both, and somehow avoid all the inconveniences. If you go the expat road (most typically as an English teacher, but often also as a token anglophone in any company wishing to look more international), you'll get a sort of a preferential treatement, and some privileges. They can be very pleasant and sometimes solve your career situation the best. But you most probably won't learn the local language any more than from your living room back at home, and you'll live in a bubble a lot. But if you try to get a normal job (even if it is out of your field. A friend of mine perfected his German while he was washing the dishes for a few months!) , you'll learn a lot, you won't need to worry whether your local friends like you or the free English practice, you'll get the most valuable experience of a different culture. But you won't have the privileges, you'll have to catch up with your new competitors, you'll have to fully adapt to the local rules of life.
..................
Btw I've moved. A new country, a new city (which I am falling in love with despite the weather being bad and making everything look grayer). Still waiting for some paperwork, looking for jobs, finishing a motivation letter to send to all the hospitals around here (btw I got a very nice recommendation letter from my boss in France! I hope it will help a bit).

I am also continuing my German again. And I hope it will go better now.
13 x

User avatar
PeterMollenburg
Black Belt - 2nd Dan
Posts: 2753
Joined: Wed Jul 22, 2015 11:54 am
Location: Australia
Languages: English (N), French (B2-certified), Dutch (High A2?), Spanish (~A1), German (long-forgotten 99%), Norwegian (false starts in 2020)
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... 15&t=16235
x 5990

Re: Back to the roots and water them with coffee

Postby PeterMollenburg » Thu Dec 03, 2020 4:52 am

Cavesa wrote:Btw I've moved. A new country, a new city (which I am falling in love with despite the weather being bad and making everything look grayer). Still waiting for some paperwork, looking for jobs, finishing a motivation letter to send to all the hospitals around here (btw I got a very nice recommendation letter from my boss in France! I hope it will help a bit).

I am also continuing my German again. And I hope it will go better now.


I'm quietly envious (not in a bad way) of your expat experiences and also very happy for you ;) Good luck Cavesa! Here's waiting to hear about your new location. Belgium? Even more envious... very green here :mrgreen: :lol:

Actually I just moved recently too, but within the same English speaking state of Australia. It's such an ordeal though with 3 kids in tow, and trying to maintain some financial stability (new jobs, spending for moving and time off not to relax but to work harder than busy days at work... etc). Anyway, good luck! Or should I say bonne chance and veel success! :?:
3 x

Cavesa
Black Belt - 4th Dan
Posts: 4063
Joined: Mon Jul 20, 2015 9:46 am
Languages: Czech (N), English (C1), French (C2), Spanish (intermediate), German (somewhere on the path), Italian (passive advanced, active basic)
x 12577

Re: Back to the roots and water them with coffee

Postby Cavesa » Thu Dec 03, 2020 8:32 pm

Thank you, PM! People moving with kids have my endless admiration!

My German is doing quite ok (the horrible weather and annoying covid restrictions help). This week so far, I did 30 minutes on Tuesday (Memrise), 30 minutes on Wednesday (Memrise too), and 1h40 minutes today (and not ended. Memrise and Clozemaster, and Speechling)

I really like the Daf kompakt coursebook based Memrise course. There are very few mistakes, and mostly in English (mostly typoes, and one or two cases of confusion, where I'd definitely pick another synonyme as the hint). It is much harder and less fun for me than my other premade SRS sources (but anything is more fun than making a deck myself), but it is worth it. The thematic approach to the typical beginner stuff is so often hated, but the stuff is objectively useful. And I think my future intermediate Me will appreciate having learnt all that :-D

Clozemaster is great! I have some slight doubts about the frequency list, but I am sure it will all fall into place at some point. I enjoy this SRS the most now. And it is also the biggest one. (Too bad there is no +German course on Memrise, like those +French or +Spanish ones by Eunoia). And it is addictive!!!

Speakly:I'll pay for it again, when I get some other paid resources out of the way and stop the subscription. And I'll restart it. It is fascinating, that its selection of vocab is so different from the rest!

Speechling: it is extremely useful, but today, I got really confused. The tutor is doing some "ch" sounds but I can't tell how are they different from my own "ch" sounds. I am already making a difference between a sort of a soft "ch" and a hard Czech "ch". Hmm, we'll see. It's not just the damned Kirche word anymore.

In some ways, I still don't like German much.

Btw I am learning the alefbet on memrise, it goes rather well. Too bad Hebrew is not on Speechling, that would be a good start.
8 x

User avatar
Montmorency
Brown Belt
Posts: 1035
Joined: Tue Oct 06, 2015 3:01 pm
Location: Oxfordshire, UK
Languages: English (Native)
Maintaining: German (active skills lapsed somewhat).
Studying: Welsh (advanced beginner/intermediate);
Dabbling/Beginner: Czech

Back-burner: Spanish (intermediate) Norwegian (bit more than beginner) Danish (beginner).

Have studied: Latin, French, Italian, Dutch; OT Hebrew (briefly) NT Greek (briefly).
Language Log: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=1429
x 1159

Re: Back to the roots and water them with coffee

Postby Montmorency » Fri Dec 04, 2020 12:11 am

In some ways, I still don't like German much.


I didn't for some years after I started learning it. I had learned (after a fashion) Dutch first (by a long way, in terms of years), and I preferred the sound of it. Actually it was Flemish I really preferred the sound of, because most of the "Dutch" speakers I heard were actually from our twin town in Oost-Vlaanderen in Belgium.

But gradually after I got into German more and more I did begin to like it and eventually love it, and prefer the sound of it to that of Dutch, or even Flemish (sorry guys).

So, anyway, these things can change.
3 x

Language patzer
Yellow Belt
Posts: 66
Joined: Sat Nov 28, 2020 5:48 am
Languages: Greek native, English C2, French B2
x 144

Re: Back to the roots and water them with coffee

Postby Language patzer » Fri Dec 04, 2020 6:47 am

I've had the same issue with german, that's why I am the eternal beginner. Although I love its litterature etc, somehow I losemy motivation and run out of steam. One day though I'll learn it... :roll:
2 x
Cours de Langue et de Civilisation Francaises
Book 1
47/65

Cavesa
Black Belt - 4th Dan
Posts: 4063
Joined: Mon Jul 20, 2015 9:46 am
Languages: Czech (N), English (C1), French (C2), Spanish (intermediate), German (somewhere on the path), Italian (passive advanced, active basic)
x 12577

Re: Back to the roots and water them with coffee

Postby Cavesa » Fri Dec 04, 2020 4:05 pm

I appreciate some of the learning activities, I really like the Minigroup thing we've got going on for German (you are not the only one strugling, Language patzer :-) we've even formed a group of annoyed eternal beginners wishing to finally climb out of this hole). I enjoy Memrise, Clozemaster, etc. But I don't particularly like German itself. I hope I'll grow into it like you have, Montmorency. For now, my primary motivation (much stronger than all the rational reasons) are the bragging rights :-D

Btw one of the German learning "problems" has just solved itself. The coursebook based course on Memrise is a bit boring due to the thematic approach (but extremely useful, as I've already said). But it is much less boring now, as I get a mix from several lessons for review, and I can also work on two new lessons at once. I've finished the Unit 3 (this weaks goal!), so I am adding bits of Unit 4 and 5. When I take two side by side, I have a much better chance that at least one will be interesting. For example, I am much more fascinated by the Wohnung chapter, than by Sports. :-)

Today, I found a few bookshops. The town is beautiful (there was even a bit of sunlight today! A miracle!), the bookstores soothing, but rather small. The language section was slightly disappointing. But I had a look at some Flemish resources. And no, I am not tempted at all. I am not really sure about the distinction Dutch vs. Flemish (but I've already seen it mentioned on a few dictionaries), but I am not too tempted to try either of these. Perhaps in a few years, if I happen to have many Flemish speaking patients, or if it gets me some points towards citizenship.
7 x


Return to “Language logs”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Radioclare and 2 guests