Thursday, October 27, 2011

Uh... I hate fame

Okay, so I'm learning 52 languages in 52 weeks. It's not like I'm going to speak fluently 55 languages (as I already know 3, you see) in a year. I'm just looking into these languages, learning a couple of phrases and so on. Learning a bit about the language and the people speaking it and the culture built around it. Things like that. Nothing big and fancy and amazing and wonderful and all that.

But the people look at me as if I was doing something extraordinary and fantastic, like I must be a genius or something, I'm going to learn 52 languages from scratch in a year and then I'll speak all of them.

I wish!

Frankly, if I did, I would have chosen different languages.

I hate that. So I love languages. So I'm not stupid and my memory isn't bad. So I learn hundreds of foreign words and phrases in a week, and would be able to tourist in a country with difficulties, not so minor either, but in that foreign language. My pronunciation might not be good but it's not bad either. And so on.
But I'm not some sort of freak for that!

Daniel Tammet, learning Icelandic from 4:40
BTW, I found this very inspiring... I don't think I have thought of words as pictograms... I mean the visual impact of the word written in Latin letters... We are not taught to do that. Daniel does because of his visual mind.
Synesthesia is not foreign to me, there are some things I prefer to describe in those terms, like in cooking - I think which color the food needs more, and then add it. But it's not very synesthethic, because it's usually something like "more green", and then it's better with herbs. So, it's not very complex synesthethics :-D (If at all, actually)
Nevertheless, there is a sense of color to words, and other senses, and that could be used to learn more... perhaps the people who are sort of intuitively learning languages do just that? To learn the "sound" of language... it's like as long they are using good grammar, the sense of the language is pleasant, but wrong words and grammar is like throwing a stone in a pond...

Anyway, I was reading a discussion about grammar... I love grammar. I have said it before and I say it again. Nevertheless I have no problems in understanding that a lot of others don't feel love to grammar, on the contrary. I mean, it was taught as something you were supposed to learn because you had to - it was incomprehensible, abstract, complicated... it didn't have any conceivable meaning, purpose or sense. It was just rules and exceptions and exceptions on exceptions on exceptions with backflip twist... and then there were sample sentences that were so simplified they had lost all the usability... You know...

(here's transcription and translation of the French, if you find it difficult to understand. Read it first, and then listen to the video, so you'll learn a bit of French too :-D)

But that's the kind of sentences you are taught to make grammar sensible, meaningsful and connected to reality. LOL Sure, the monkey, oui, sur la branche! Le singe, masculine, la branche, feminine... oui... Bah! Sottise!

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