PM’s French Adventures in the Matrix

Continue or start your personal language log here, including logs for challenge participants
User avatar
PeterMollenburg
Black Belt - 2nd Dan
Posts: 2439
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%)
Language Log: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=784
x 5132

Re: Pete Mollenburg's Adventures in the Matrix in French and a tad of other languages

Postby PeterMollenburg » Tue Dec 11, 2018 4:46 am

Skynet wrote:
PeterMollenburg wrote:Speaking to a real life living actual French person the other day, I specifically asked for some pronunciation feed-back. She was the second French person in the last couple of weeks who stated that I sounded Belgian. This French woman clarified further and stated "but not necessarily Walloon, but in fact Flemish, as your French 'r' is too strong". She went on to provide examples ("don't say it so strong, just lightly touch the 'r'). Thus I've been actively working to soften it.


Mmmmm, I had been told (on my first thread) that Belgian and Parisian accents were indistinguishable from each other. Perhaps your Dutch is flavouring your Flemish French? ;) I recently gave up the pyrrhic war that I had waged against having a non-native French accent - it's not worth my effort. Congrats on bringing the entire family on the Pimsleur bandwagon!


For me, I view it differently. I won't get into whether or not one can acquire a native-like accent. However, it's very much a part of my routine, in fact, it's automatic while using course material, to attempt to imitate as closely as possible, the pronunciation of native speakers. I enjoy doing this. I'd feel extremely odd if I weren't doing this.

If I'm told something is a little off in my pronunciation, I'll listen acutely for it in my own speech and I'll then analyse the speech of native speakers mainly through audio portions of courses and attempt to adjust my pronunciation to match more closely (ie adjust the problem phoneme), as close as possible that is, the pronunciation of the native speakers. Sometimes we can't hear something in our own pronunciation and it takes someone else to point it out for us to hear it. I always focus on attempting to move as close as possible to native-like pronunciation as I can, by focusing on audio and shadowing. The more little tweaks I can make over time, arguably the closer I'll become to sounding native-like. I really enjoy this aspect of language learning and I wouldn't want to change that about my own approach to learning languages. Everyone has different objectives, has a different personality and so on. This is certainly what I do, but it's not for everyone, and that's fine.

As for Dutch influencing my French. It's a good/valid theory, but I haven't been (re-)studying Dutch for long enough for the strong 'r' to be coming from my current Dutch learning. This isn't a recent phenomena, as I've been pronouncing the 'r' this way for some time, perhaps years - I knew it was strong, but it took someone else to point it out, to realise it was in fact too strong. Dutch may not be influencing my French now, but it may have been the reason I began pronouncing the 'r' the way I do, since some years back when Dutch was the main focus, I certainly became adept at producing guttural Dutch sounds. For the record I've never really felt that I've had language interference, although I do feel sometimes that my native English does indeed influence my pronunciation and of course I strive to eliminate such influence. I'm not totally certain why I do this, I guess it's a perfectionist thing perhaps, but the odd thing is I quite like a nice accent in a foreigner learning/speaking English, provided it doesn't strongly hinder communication.
4 x

User avatar
tastyonions
Blue Belt
Posts: 869
Joined: Sat Jul 18, 2015 5:39 pm
Location: Dallas, TX
Languages: EN (N), FR, ES, IT, PT, DE, NL, CA
x 1641

Re: Pete Mollenburg's Adventures in the Matrix in French and a tad of other languages

Postby tastyonions » Tue Dec 11, 2018 2:32 pm

I have also noticed that people who achieve a correct pronunciation of the French R will sometimes "overdo" it a bit. Curiously I sometimes seem to hear this in young (native) Francophone children as well -- a very strong R in phonetic contexts where most adults would "lighten" it.
2 x

User avatar
Exasperated
White Belt
Posts: 38
Joined: Tue Jul 28, 2015 7:28 pm
Location: Australia
Languages: English (N), German (C1), Italian (beginner)
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... =15&t=2074
x 79

Re: Pete Mollenburg's Adventures in the Matrix in French and Dutch

Postby Exasperated » Wed Dec 12, 2018 8:57 am

Hi Peter,

After a mammoth trawl from page 105 to here over the last couple of days, it felt almost rude not to pop by and say hi!

Funnily I distinctly remember reading your log back on the old site in my heavy lurking days mid 2014 - as a fellow Australian who also harboured ambitions of professional competency and European visa challenges it definitely stood out.

I've not got any particular insight, but I wanted to say that I wish you all the best. Your dedication and hard-work over such a period is extremely admirable; and the consistency you showed trekking towards your goal (however much you personally felt it wavered) I found very inspiring.
1 x

User avatar
PeterMollenburg
Black Belt - 2nd Dan
Posts: 2439
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%)
Language Log: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=784
x 5132

Re: Pete Mollenburg's Adventures in the Matrix in French and Dutch

Postby PeterMollenburg » Wed Dec 12, 2018 9:32 am

Exasperated wrote:Hi Peter,

After a mammoth trawl from page 105 to here over the last couple of days, it felt almost rude not to pop by and say hi!

Funnily I distinctly remember reading your log back on the old site in my heavy lurking days mid 2014 - as a fellow Australian who also harboured ambitions of professional competency and European visa challenges it definitely stood out.

I've not got any particular insight, but I wanted to say that I wish you all the best. Your dedication and hard-work over such a period is extremely admirable; and the consistency you showed trekking towards your goal (however much you personally felt it wavered) I found very inspiring.


Thank you Exasperated. I truly appreciate the positive feedback.

How is your language journey/learning going if you are on one? (if you want to comment, if not, no probs).

I'm surprised sometimes when I read that people are actually interested in reading even some parts of my log. It makes me think, okay, maybe I have something useful to say after all from time to time (other times, perhaps not), and maybe it's worth sticking around. I say that in part because I often harbour feelings of just pissing off into oblivion and some of those reasons are probably attention seeking while others are more attention avoidance. Anyway, inspiration is certainly a positive thing, I feel.

I'm currently attempting to get back into a little bit more of a serious routine again. As I type this I was contemplating doing some more Fluenz French 5, and I think I've just decided to go to sleep early and perhaps read a few pages of a French book as I wind down instead since I'm somewhat exhausted.

You know in some ways I do feel I missed my mark, as I didn't obtain the C-level certificate(s) I was chasing (yet?), but in other ways I'm so impressed with where I am at, particularly in relation to my children who speak only French with me. No, I'm not perfect, but it's certainly not an easy feat to take yourself up to a high enough level with extremely little native speaker interaction and then have your children speak to you in this language all day every day (okay when I am around). I'm not boasting, honestly, just stating it how it is, and that is pretty content, but oddly still not quite satisfied.

Anyway thanks again Exasperated, I hope your language learning is indeed going well. As iguanamon often points out being consistent is one of the most important ingredients in language learning. So 10 seconds a day, and you'll be right :shock: Hmmm, maybe 11.

Throw a chook over your middle shoulder.
5 x

User avatar
Exasperated
White Belt
Posts: 38
Joined: Tue Jul 28, 2015 7:28 pm
Location: Australia
Languages: English (N), German (C1), Italian (beginner)
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... =15&t=2074
x 79

Re: Pete Mollenburg's Adventures in the Matrix in French and Dutch

Postby Exasperated » Wed Dec 12, 2018 11:45 am

PeterMollenburg wrote:
Thank you Exasperated. I truly appreciate the positive feedback.

How is your language journey/learning going if you are on one? (if you want to comment, if not, no probs).

I'm surprised sometimes when I read that people are actually interested in reading even some parts of my log. It makes me think, okay, maybe I have something useful to say after all from time to time (other times, perhaps not), and maybe it's worth sticking around. I say that in part because I often harbour feelings of just pissing off into oblivion and some of those reasons are probably attention seeking while others are more attention avoidance. Anyway, inspiration is certainly a positive thing, I feel.

I'm currently attempting to get back into a little bit more of a serious routine again. As I type this I was contemplating doing some more Fluenz French 5, and I think I've just decided to go to sleep early and perhaps read a few pages of a French book as I wind down instead since I'm somewhat exhausted.

You know in some ways I do feel I missed my mark, as I didn't obtain the C-level certificate(s) I was chasing (yet?), but in other ways I'm so impressed with where I am at, particularly in relation to my children who speak only French with me. No, I'm not perfect, but it's certainly not an easy feat to take yourself up to a high enough level with extremely little native speaker interaction and then have your children speak to you in this language all day every day (okay when I am around). I'm not boasting, honestly, just stating it how it is, and that is pretty content, but oddly still not quite satisfied.

Anyway thanks again Exasperated, I hope your language learning is indeed going well. As iguanamon often points out being consistent is one of the most important ingredients in language learning. So 10 seconds a day, and you'll be right :shock: Hmmm, maybe 11.

Throw a chook over your middle shoulder.


It's been a fascinating read - I've personally gotten a lot out of it. It would be a real shame for you to leave, there are any number of people (both silent and vocal) who are invested in your continued success - I think sharing the ups/downs/backflips of such a big endeavour gives a back a great deal to the community; even with the occasional controversial opinion thrown in for good measure :D

The C-level certificate is an interesting question - would it scratch the itch/ grant some closure (a terrible term to describe a perpetual learning process)? Maybe? I have the same thoughts about German, I'm in such a great place with the language, can do virtually everything I would like; yet there is the slightest lingering sense of unfinished business. Yet at the same time the necessary preparation, time and financial investment just don't seem to justify the payoff. Not to mention, I suspect those feelings stem from a comparison of the native language to L2 which will always throw the discrepancy into contrast; and a piece of paper is unlikely to do much about that - beyond the initial surge of (well justified) pride of course.

In regards to my language learning - I've begun Italian in the last couple of weeks - still in that tranquil honeymoon phase before the annoying quirks become too apparent :lol: Previously I learned German, though I use the term learn rather loosely, as in contrast to this current project it was a rather laissez faire endeavour. This more structured (though still not quite up to your standards) approach is most unlike the me of old, but objectively has to lead to better results - if through nothing more than the consistency you (and iguanamon) mention.

You've done so much already mate, getting to share it with your children is another really interesting side adventure - I really hope you do continue to check in, I'll certainly be following along!
3 x

User avatar
rdearman
Site Admin
Posts: 4805
Joined: Thu May 14, 2015 4:18 pm
Location: United Kingdom
Languages: English (N)
Language Log: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=1836
x 11553
Contact:

Re: Pete Mollenburg's Adventures in the Matrix in French and Dutch

Postby rdearman » Wed Dec 12, 2018 3:00 pm

PeterMollenburg wrote:Throw a chook over your middle shoulder.

Must be an Australian thing. Is that a lizard or something? I'm assuming a chook is poisonous; since everything in Australian is venomous or poisonous or deadly in some other fashion.

EDIT: Also, how many shoulders do you people have down there? We only have 2 in the northern hemisphere left and right ones.
4 x

User avatar
Adrianslont
Blue Belt
Posts: 673
Joined: Sun Aug 16, 2015 10:39 am
Location: Australia
Languages: English (N), Learning Indonesian and French
x 1316

Re: Pete Mollenburg's Adventures in the Matrix in French and Dutch

Postby Adrianslont » Wed Dec 12, 2018 8:21 pm

rdearman wrote:
PeterMollenburg wrote:Throw a chook over your middle shoulder.

Must be an Australian thing. Is that a lizard or something? I'm assuming a chook is poisonous; since everything in Australian is venomous or poisonous or deadly in some other fashion.

EDIT: Also, how many shoulders do you people have down there? We only have 2 in the northern hemisphere left and right ones.

No, chooks are not poisonous or venomous. A fox go my neighbours’ chooks a couple of days ago.
1 x

User avatar
PeterMollenburg
Black Belt - 2nd Dan
Posts: 2439
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%)
Language Log: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=784
x 5132

Re: Pete Mollenburg's Adventures in the Matrix in French and Dutch

Postby PeterMollenburg » Wed Dec 12, 2018 9:40 pm

rdearman wrote:
PeterMollenburg wrote:Throw a chook over your middle shoulder.

Must be an Australian thing. Is that a lizard or something? I'm assuming a chook is poisonous; since everything in Australian is venomous or poisonous or deadly in some other fashion.

EDIT: Also, how many shoulders do you people have down there? We only have 2 in the northern hemisphere left and right ones.


Basically, we have poisonous, vicious, ferocious, venemous, dangerous ‘attacky things’ here everywhere. Snakes, spiders, fleas, blades of grass, twigs, fridges, freezers, ovens, you name it. They’re after me at every turn, are doubling up their efforts at every second turn and if go geradeaus, that is ‘straight on’ to the uninitiated non-skilled non-German speakers (obviously I’m extremely gifted) then I’m in real trouble.

The middle shoulder thing, as well as any conspiracy or political talk that perhaps might have appeared here at some point (in true PM fashion -all PMs are extremely honest individuals- I’m not really sure whether it really did appear here, but maybe), has been clearly to throw these bastards off my trial and to basically just stay alive, as I’ve been known to catch a poisonous bread roll or two attempting to hack my account. RIP PM, your days are numbered! You see, even my thoughts have been infiltrated, who would’ve inagined!

As for the northern ‘hemisphere’! *cough cough* Poor little round earth thinkers, when will you realise that Nasa is a front made again by me, obviously (to throw off the ‘attacky things’).
3 x

User avatar
PeterMollenburg
Black Belt - 2nd Dan
Posts: 2439
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%)
Language Log: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=784
x 5132

Re: Pete Mollenburg's Adventures in the Matrix in French and a tad of other languages

Postby PeterMollenburg » Wed Dec 12, 2018 9:52 pm

tastyonions wrote:I have also noticed that people who achieve a correct pronunciation of the French R will sometimes "overdo" it a bit. Curiously I sometimes seem to hear this in young (native) Francophone children as well -- a very strong R in phonetic contexts where most adults would "lighten" it.


This is actually reassuring :) Thanks for sharing.

Meanwhile, softening the ‘r’ seems to be going okay. Hear that? No? Too soft maybe? :?
1 x

User avatar
Adrianslont
Blue Belt
Posts: 673
Joined: Sun Aug 16, 2015 10:39 am
Location: Australia
Languages: English (N), Learning Indonesian and French
x 1316

Re: Pete Mollenburg's Adventures in the Matrix in French and Dutch

Postby Adrianslont » Thu Dec 13, 2018 1:47 am

Adrianslont wrote:
rdearman wrote:
PeterMollenburg wrote:Throw a chook over your middle shoulder.

Must be an Australian thing. Is that a lizard or something? I'm assuming a chook is poisonous; since everything in Australian is venomous or poisonous or deadly in some other fashion.

EDIT: Also, how many shoulders do you people have down there? We only have 2 in the northern hemisphere left and right ones.

No, Australian chooks are not poisonous or venomous. A fox got my neighbours’ chooks a couple of days ago.


Edit: spelling and added the word “Australian” for clarification
1 x


Return to “Language logs”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Systematiker and 2 guests