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Author Topic: E-Melting Pot  (Read 8958 times)

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Offline ReanimateMagnusTopic starter

Re: E-Melting Pot
« Reply #50 on: June 08, 2011, 07:44:01 PM »
There are two essential phrases to know:

Where is the bathroom?
I don't speak _______.

Yeah, miming "where is the bathroom" is generally a rude expression

Offline Langueduchatte

Re: E-Melting Pot
« Reply #51 on: June 08, 2011, 10:06:16 PM »
Quote
Yeah, miming "where is the bathroom" is generally a rude expression

Yup, but like I say - it gives them a laugh!

Offline Kuroneko

Re: E-Melting Pot
« Reply #52 on: June 08, 2011, 10:39:25 PM »

I have Rosetta stone for Japanese as well and it was incredibly helpful to prep for both times I went to Japan. 

Offline Maelyn

Re: E-Melting Pot
« Reply #53 on: June 14, 2011, 01:33:43 AM »
I am a native American English speaker and can get by in French.  I used to be pretty good in French, but lack of use has made me quite rusty.  I have visited and lived in France, though, and was even told at one point that I have a 'jolie accent americaine' (a pretty American accent). 


I've also studied Spanish, but it's rusty as hell.  I can comprehend more than I can speak and even that isn't much.  I also took a semester of Italian, but most of my comprehension there is more based of it's similarity to French and Spanish than the class I took.


But, I do have a list around here of how to say "I love you" in about 21 different languages.  I collected it during a summer when I took courses in France.  We had a lot of international students there.  I remember a few of them even now.  It was interesting to gather, though.


Oh, and I also have been taught to say really naughty things in Swedish and Norwegian.  Though I've forgotten almost all of it now, I do have it written down as well...somewhere.  *giggles*

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Re: E-Melting Pot
« Reply #54 on: June 14, 2011, 01:46:00 AM »
But, I do have a list around here of how to say "I love you" in about 21 different languages.  I collected it during a summer when I took courses in France.  We had a lot of international students there.  I remember a few of them even now.  It was interesting to gather, though.

Jeez, we were pretty juvenile when the exchange students came around.  We only got them to teach us how to cuss.   ::) 

Offline Maelyn

Re: E-Melting Pot
« Reply #55 on: June 14, 2011, 02:00:59 AM »
Jeez, we were pretty juvenile when the exchange students came around.  We only got them to teach us how to cuss.   ::) 

Oh, I did that too!  But I thought it was an interesting list to have nonetheless.  *grins*

Offline ReanimateMagnusTopic starter

Re: E-Melting Pot
« Reply #56 on: June 14, 2011, 08:00:54 AM »
Jeez, we were pretty juvenile when the exchange students came around.  We only got them to teach us how to cuss.   ::)

Really our exchange student was from Germany and she was so beautiful all the guys went and took German to get to know her better.

Offline Avis habilis

Re: E-Melting Pot
« Reply #57 on: June 14, 2011, 08:04:15 AM »
Heh. Ours was a Brooke Shields lookalike from Brazil. You've never seen so many guys despairing over not having any way to learn Portuguese. (Once they figured out there was no such language as "Brazilian".)

Offline ReanimateMagnusTopic starter

Re: E-Melting Pot
« Reply #58 on: June 14, 2011, 09:34:07 AM »
Heh. Ours was a Brooke Shields lookalike from Brazil. You've never seen so many guys despairing over not having any way to learn Portuguese. (Once they figured out there was no such language as "Brazilian".)
Yeah I first found out that Brazilians spoke Portuguese was from the movie The Incredible Hulk when Bruce found himself there and tried to speak Spanish and the guy goes. "Sorry I don't speak Spanish" so he switched over to Portuguese.

Offline gaggedLouise

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Re: E-Melting Pot
« Reply #59 on: June 14, 2011, 09:44:24 AM »
I guess I'm a polyglot. Fully fluent in Swedish, English, French, Danish, Norwegian. The Nordic languages are pretty much mutually intelligible, at least if you've grown up in a border region; there was a great deal of watching Danish TV and so on when I was a kid, I still do sometimes, and as they -like us - subtitle stuff it helped things trickle in: you got it spoken in English or Swedish plus the subbed (almost-)translation. They even subtitled rock songs, which is wisely never done on Swedish tv, so we'd get some rather zany and over-literate translations.

No trouble reading German, able to make myself understood speaking the tongue but not always keen to - it's one I only studied briefly at school, really picked up later on my own and on travels, and I'm not very safe on the cases and genders of words which affect endings, prepositions and so on, all around phrases. I might do something to dust that up.

Rudimentary knowledge (tourist talk/reading the papers a bit) of Spanish and Italian.

Would want to learn Russian and classical Greek. Russian especially - being able to read Dostoevsky in the original and to make myslef understood on a visit to Moscow would be very cool.

 
« Last Edit: June 14, 2011, 10:00:06 AM by gaggedLouise »

Offline Lilias

Re: E-Melting Pot
« Reply #60 on: June 14, 2011, 10:01:23 AM »
I guess I'm a polyglot. Fully fluent in Swedish, English, French, Danish, Norwegian (the Nordic languages are pretty much mutually intelligible, at least if you've grown up in a border region; there was a great deal of watching Danish TV and so on when I was a kid, I still do sometimes, and as they -like us - subtitle stuff it helped things trickle in: you got it spoken in English or Swedish plus the subbed (almost-)translation). They even subtitled rock songs, which is wisely never done on Swedish tv, so we'd get some rather zany and over-literate translations.

I knew a girl on another forum, a Norwegian studying in Denmark, who used to say that Danish sounded like Norwegian with a potato stuck into her cheek. I know better than ask other people to verify that, though. :P

Would want to learn Russian and classical Greek. Russian especially - being able to read Dostoevsky in the original and to make myslef understood on a visit to Moscow would be very cool.

That's exactly what got me started in learning languages - wanting to read literature in the original. Even at 10 I knew a lousy translation when I saw it, and didn't want to depend on them.

Offline Valerian

Re: E-Melting Pot
« Reply #61 on: June 14, 2011, 10:21:12 AM »
Bad translations make me ache.   :(  The one thing I was really good at when I was at the height of my ability in French was translating French poetry into English.  Based on that, the professor tried to persuade me to switch my English major to French, until she realized how bad I was at translating English into French.  :P

I once sat down to watch The Thirteenth Warrior with a friend of mine who spoke fluent German.  When the characters started speaking in Old Norse, he blinked, stared at the TV for a while, then exclaimed, "I can understand that!"  It was just close enough that he could catch every second or third word and work out what they were saying.  And it matched what the characters should have been saying; I always wonder if filmmakers bother about that when they're not even providing subtitles, which they weren't in this instance.

Offline gaggedLouise

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Re: E-Melting Pot
« Reply #62 on: June 14, 2011, 10:27:47 AM »
Yeah, Norway used to be a Danish dependency for hundreds of years - and then in personal union with Sweden in the 19th century (the same kings), but by then nationalism had woken up so the country was never culturally or economically overrun by Sweden. In the Danish-dominated era, the educated classes, even the Church, became half-Danish in speech and habits. They really have two varieties of their language now, clearly separate but still mutually intelligible: Danefied Norwegian (bokmål, "book tongue") and landsmål ("country tongue"), a revived and partly invented form of the countryside dialects that hadn't been used a great deal in writing before the 19th century. Bokmål is 90% like Danish, except a slightly different, softer pronunciation. Landsmål has lots of words distinct from it, but it's still recognizably the same language. So book tongue is easier if one is from another Nordic country but the country spech goes down too without too much trouble - at least if you like languages, and I do.

I love French, and I've worked professionally in it, even done translation work, but it's not easy. I didn't really get along in it until I was able to spend some time in France in the summers, and I remember how frustrated I felt the first time I went because it seemed (to me) that my way of speaking and acting shouted "tourist, foreigner". It didn't matter that there was a whole class of Swedes around and that there were thousands of tourists from other countries in town too. Bewildered, of course: stage fright or something. At that point i had studied it for three years at school, with top grades, but arriving in France made me feel both fascinated and a bit cowed. I badly wanted to grow into that country and that language, but it took years of hard efforts and of cutting loose on some things. It's probably the same with Japan or Russia.

Quote from: Lilias
I knew a girl on another forum, a Norwegian studying in Denmark, who used to say that Danish sounded like Norwegian with a potato stuck into her cheek. I know better than ask other people to verify that, though

It's not a bad characterization actually. Danish does sound a bit slurred, lots of diphtongs, and theý have this throaty "thump" sound that's a regular below some vowels; it produces that funny kind of potato effect. The sound quality of Danish doesn't work great in rock music, but it works excellently in hardboiled, gritty police thrillers. With Swedish it's the opposite: good musical language, sturdy, savoury, clear and melodic, works for both classical, folk and rock, but not that great for crime fiction. At least not often on tv and in the movies.  ;D
« Last Edit: June 14, 2011, 10:45:02 AM by gaggedLouise »

Offline gaggedLouise

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Re: E-Melting Pot
« Reply #63 on: June 14, 2011, 10:56:59 AM »
I remember this Danish tv cop thriller where a cop said about a guy who had disappeared in a spate of mob infighting "Ja men så er han garanteret död" ("Okay, but then he's guaranteed to be dead/it's a no-brainer that he's dead"). The final word, "dead", had that thump sound in the vowel. It sounded like a very convincing tough-guy line, and the use of "guaranteed" made you jump a bit. In Swedish it would never have worked, it would have come out inane.

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Re: E-Melting Pot
« Reply #64 on: June 14, 2011, 12:17:41 PM »
I once sat down to watch The Thirteenth Warrior with a friend of mine who spoke fluent German.  When the characters started speaking in Old Norse, he blinked, stared at the TV for a while, then exclaimed, "I can understand that!"  It was just close enough that he could catch every second or third word and work out what they were saying.  And it matched what the characters should have been saying; I always wonder if filmmakers bother about that when they're not even providing subtitles, which they weren't in this instance.

I watched 'A Clockwork Orange' with someone who'd had several years of Russian.  She understood Nadsat faster than I did.

Offline Lilias

Re: E-Melting Pot
« Reply #65 on: June 14, 2011, 02:56:27 PM »
In Swedish it would never have worked, it would have come out inane.

Is that why there are so many Swedish crime writers? Shine in the written word because it would never work in the spoken kind? ;)

Offline Valerian

Re: E-Melting Pot
« Reply #66 on: June 14, 2011, 03:44:45 PM »
I watched 'A Clockwork Orange' with someone who'd had several years of Russian.  She understood Nadsat faster than I did.
Horror show!  :D  My Russian teacher mentioned that film in one of our classes.

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Re: E-Melting Pot
« Reply #67 on: June 14, 2011, 03:51:46 PM »
Yeah, I was puzzling over the connection between horror movies and 'something good' and she's all "хорошо!'  Not that horror movies aren't something good, but it's not all that intuitive a connection.

Offline gaggedLouise

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Re: E-Melting Pot
« Reply #68 on: June 14, 2011, 05:29:04 PM »
Is that why there are so many Swedish crime writers? Shine in the written word because it would never work in the spoken kind? ;)

There are lots of subpar Swedish crime writers that ship horsecarts of books at home but whom you guys never get to read, because they are nowhere near a Stieg Larsson or a Maj Sjöwall/Per Wahlöö. C:)  ;D Stieg Larsson was a true original, and a really racy writer. Not sure if he was a great mystery constructor but he sure knew how to create his own thing with style. There aren't many like him.

But yes, I'll give it that the good ones of Swedish crime novels are better these days than local crime tv and cop movies. For some years it felt as if every film director or screen writer here wanted to do a Scarface or a The Wire set in Stockholm. And they so don't - it comes out stiff and unconvincing. Well, the Millennium movies here, with Michael Nyquist and Noomi Rapace were above that, but they could lean on a trilogy of assured big hit books and their rich, crisp, sometimes deadpan dialogue. Most of the local production is nothing like that.
« Last Edit: June 14, 2011, 05:34:44 PM by gaggedLouise »

Offline ReanimateMagnusTopic starter

Re: E-Melting Pot
« Reply #69 on: June 14, 2011, 11:51:14 PM »
Japanese Sado-Masochistic Laughing Gameshow.

Having learned a second language can be painful in Japan.

Offline DudelRok

Re: E-Melting Pot
« Reply #70 on: June 17, 2011, 12:45:29 PM »
I can read a fair bit of Polish and Welsh thanks to both an online game I used to play that was dominated by Polish speakers and a girl I wanted to get to know better who was fluent in Welsh better than English. Polish and Welsh were pretty close, but Swedish was murder to even look at. O.o

Not enough of either to get by, mind you. I stopped both early on when things didn't work out in some manner or fashion.

I can say, "Hello, my name is," In quite a few languages (like the above Welsh and Polish). Can also say, "I don't speak Spanish," in Spanish mostly due to where I live (Florida). I can pick up context clues within written text for it and Japanese (when it's written with English letters). Not sure how I can do either of those, really. Picked it up somewhere.

I know how/where English borrowed words come from and know how to properly pronounce my Rs... but what I know is horrible specific and limiting.

Like with everything else, I know a little bit about a lot but ain't good in any. :( I've been tempted to learn Spanish but I don't really have the means, right now. And Polish was just oddly fun! XD

"Witam, ja jestem Dudel!" (I don't remember the spelling.) But it's amazing how well people will treat you if you ONLY greet them in their native tongue then switch to English. I also knew "Hi" and several other general greetings for Polish. "Good day," etc... don't really remember to well, now. :(
« Last Edit: June 17, 2011, 12:47:10 PM by DudelRok »

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Re: E-Melting Pot
« Reply #71 on: June 17, 2011, 01:09:06 PM »
I think that's the first time I've seen Welsh and Polish compared to each other.  *blinks*  Of course, I don't know many people that have bothered to learn any amount of both languages.

(In theory, I should have more of an interest in Polish than I do - family heritage and all that.  Welsh was always a bit more interesting to me.)

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Re: E-Melting Pot
« Reply #72 on: June 17, 2011, 04:05:50 PM »
I speak English.
Je parle un peu français. (I haven't used it in...forever, so please don't test me...I probably even got that sentence wrong)
I'm also in the middle of learning American Sign Language. It might not be verbal, but it's still a language.

I can also speak these 3 plus a little bit of Español. I LOVE singing and signing songs on Sunday mornings at church for the congregation even tho there isn't anyone deaf in the church. :-) I have an Aunt in New Jersey that is a Sign Language Interpreter.
« Last Edit: June 17, 2011, 04:15:28 PM by JadenMystic »

Offline Ensilumi

Re: E-Melting Pot
« Reply #73 on: July 28, 2011, 05:15:58 PM »
I speak German, which is my mother tongue, fluent English (I usually think in English, even) and a bit of Finnish. I used to know some Spanish as well, but I really never got to use my knowledge so I just forgot.

As far as understanding goes, I find that I can actually read Danish and Dutch pretty well, Swedish is harder but I still understand some. Haven't tried Norwegian, but it's probably similar.

Offline Krysia

Re: E-Melting Pot
« Reply #74 on: July 28, 2011, 09:21:21 PM »
I speak English - not so well even if I was born here. English is a very hard language to learn even for natives. I should say I speak it fine, but typing it takes me a bit because of grammar.

I took a few semesters of Chinese (Mandarin) in college for fun. All I remember is how to ask for Chinese food and telling people my name. I still remember how to write the characters ironically. Must be something to do with an artistic brain.

I'm better at Japanese speaking it then reading or writing it. I also have a book to learn Korean that I picked up on Ebay to try it. For Rosetta stones I have Korea, Japanese and Chinese (Mandarin).