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Small Expectations

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Teango
Triglot
Winner TAC 2010 & 2012
Senior Member
United States
teango.wordpress.comRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 3864 days ago

2210 posts - 3734 votes 
Speaks: English*, German, Russian
Studies: Hawaiian, French, Toki Pona

 
 Message 177 of 431
11 October 2010 at 12:35pm | IP Logged 
Churchkhela, this sounds just like something I used to have in Turkey (I think they called it cevizli sucuk, i.e. walnut sausage). :)

Looking forward to hearing how the intermediate class works out, it will definitely be a change of gears...keeping my fingers crossed for you!
1 person has voted this message useful



TixhiiDon
Tetraglot
Senior Member
Japan
Joined 3772 days ago

772 posts - 1473 votes 
Speaks: English*, Japanese, German, Russian
Studies: Georgian

 
 Message 178 of 431
12 October 2010 at 6:28am | IP Logged 
Teango wrote:
Churchkhela, this sounds just like something I used to have in Turkey (I think they called it cevizli sucuk, i.e. walnut sausage). :)


That's interesting. It seems like a lot of Georgian cuisine has come from, or at least been influenced by, Turkish food. From my limited knowledge so far, the main ingredients that make Georgian food Georgian appear to be walnuts, pomegranates, fenugreek, yoghurt, and coriander. All good stuff, although I'm equally partial to the stodgy potatoes, cabbage, beetroot and dill you get in Russia (I even named my dog Dill in honour of the great herb).
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TixhiiDon
Tetraglot
Senior Member
Japan
Joined 3772 days ago

772 posts - 1473 votes 
Speaks: English*, Japanese, German, Russian
Studies: Georgian

 
 Message 179 of 431
14 October 2010 at 1:40am | IP Logged 
So I went to my first intermediate class yesterday evening and, well, I'm not really
sure what I think about it. There were only four students besides me, which is
obviously a good thing, but they were all pretty quiet and there was no banter and
laughs like there always is in the Saturday beginners' class. The levels of the
students seem to be wildly varying - some seem to be pretty good but others were still
stumbling over the alphabet (this is after studying the language for 3 years!!! It
makes me want to be very judgmental about the ability of Japanese people to learn
foreign languages but I shall restrain myself).

The actual content of the lesson was pretty tough. The grammar was manageable but there
was a lot of vocabulary that I didn't know, and we did a listening exercise that I
found very difficult indeed. Anyway, I've decided to take the plunge and switch to
this class, with some reservations...
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E}{pugnator
Newbie
Brazil
Joined 3474 days ago

9 posts - 9 votes
Speaks: Portuguese*

 
 Message 180 of 431
24 October 2010 at 1:29am | IP Logged 
I'm not sure I can post it here, hope it doesn't sound as advertising (I don't mean it all), but my notes can be found at

http://www.unilang.org/viewtopic.php?f=22&t=30643

I tried to open a log here but found the chriteria to be too confusing for classifying a simple language learning log.

Edited by E}{pugnator on 24 October 2010 at 1:30am

1 person has voted this message useful



TixhiiDon
Tetraglot
Senior Member
Japan
Joined 3772 days ago

772 posts - 1473 votes 
Speaks: English*, Japanese, German, Russian
Studies: Georgian

 
 Message 181 of 431
19 November 2010 at 7:35am | IP Logged 
It's been a long long time since my last update - over a month, in fact, and in the
meantime I notice that I've passed 20,000 views, so cheers for that, but more
importantly apologies for being so lazy.

My main excuse is that my life has been rather busy with both good things and bad. On
the bad side, I got two terrible bouts of tonsillitis, one on each side of my throat,
within a month, both of which required a course of steroids to cure. I was really
quite perturbed at the apparent deterioration of my health, and so I made the momentous
(for me) decision to give up smoking. Yes folks, I've been a dedicated smoker for the
last 21 years. Incredibly stupid, I know, but it seemed so cool and grown-up when I
was 16, and since Japan is a smoker's paradise in terms of both social acceptance and
cost, I've never had to consider all the money I would save by quitting or face the
social approbation smokers suffer elsewhere.

So I smoked my last cigarette at 9:30pm local time, on Thursday November 11th, just
over one week ago. For the first three days I did nothing but think about smoking, and
the irritability ex-smokers are supposed to feel was closer to full-blown rage in my
case (I took it out on the poor woman in the dry cleaner's, すみませんでした!), but
now I feel much better, although I still haven't got used to the fact that I'm a non-
smoker. Quitting is a bit like an out-of-body experience - like your brain is not your
own anymore. Certainly one of weirder experiences I've ever been through. I'm so
happy I've finally quit though. Disgusting habit...

But I'm sure you didn't come here to read about my smoking woes, so on to Georgian.

Georgian is going fine. Thursdays with Medea are really enjoyable, and although my
spoken Georgian is still pretty horrible it's not quite as horrible as it was. The
Wednesday classes at Asahi Culture Center are cool too - not quite as good a laugh as
the Saturday class was, but more intense and more serious, which of course is to be
welcomed.

In my spare time I'm still reading Jeans Generation, but have only around 20 pages
left, after which I will be able to say that I have read a novel in Georgian (and
thereby hugely impress...er...no-one, probably), and I'm ploughing on with the Gold
List method, which I enjoy a lot as it satisfies the list-maker in me. The problem
with this method is that it is so inconsistent. On my 25-word head lists, I sometimes
remember 20 of the words and sometimes only 1 or 2, and then I have great trouble
making the first distilled list of 17 words. Still, I'm going to stick with it as it's
such a good way to organize all the vocab I pick up from various sources, and it is
quicker and more permanent than typing it all into Byki.

Byki failed me when I moved computers. There may have been a way to transfer all my
scores and learned items, but if there was I couldn't find it, so I was stuck right
back at 0 learned words. The thought of going right through the days and numbers and
months and so on all over again to get myself back where I was on my old computer is
more than depressing, so I think my Byki days are probably over. If someone from Byki
ever reads this, take note!

So in summary, all's well in TixhiiDon's house, even more so now that my chances of
lung cancer, stroke, heart disease, and assorted other hideous and fatal diseases are
decreasing as I type.
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magister
Pro Member
United States
Joined 4911 days ago

346 posts - 421 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: Turkish, Irish
Personal Language Map

 
 Message 182 of 431
19 November 2010 at 5:26pm | IP Logged 
TixhiiDon wrote:
and so I made the momentous
(for me) decision to give up smoking.


Congratulations. Keep it up!
1 person has voted this message useful



TixhiiDon
Tetraglot
Senior Member
Japan
Joined 3772 days ago

772 posts - 1473 votes 
Speaks: English*, Japanese, German, Russian
Studies: Georgian

 
 Message 183 of 431
16 December 2010 at 11:47pm | IP Logged 
So I guess it must be time to dust off the ol' language learning log for a Xmas update.
I'm still studying Georgian diligently so I'm not sure why that hasn't translated into
more updates, but anyway, for those who are interested, here is a summary of my
Georgian endeavours of the last month.

I'm back with Aronson's Reading Grammar. As much as I complain about it I just can't
seem to stop going back to it every few months. The thing is is that it works, folks!
After 3 months of using any other sources, I find myself completely confused about
which verb does what, means what, takes which cases, and is conjugated how, and then I
open up Aronson, and there it all is, laid out for me in clear black and white, with
tables and examples and cross-references to other languages. So hats off to Mr.
Aronson.

Anyway, specifically, I started back at Chapter 7 and am now right up to Chapter 14,
which means I've finally got the perfect series more or less organized in my head, and
have also covered the participles, which are hilariously random. There are about 7,635
ways of forming participles, depending on the conjugation type, whether or not the verb
root includes a vowel, what day of the week it is, whether or not the speaker has a
cousin called Mary, and whether or not the listener likes cabbage. Perceptive readers
will notice a hint of exaggeration there, but safe to say I will be happy to recognize
the participles for now and use just a few more or less as set phrases (for example იმ
წიგნში დაწერილია რომ...).

My two classes are going well, although I'm feeling a lot of frustration over the
disaster that is my spoken Georgian. My listening and reading have come on leaps and
bounds recently, and my writing is not bad either, but I just cannot produce anything
but the simplest sentences from my mouth. Of course I know that the passive skills
advance more quickly than the active, but the disconnect in this case is too large.
Just yesterday I was listening to Medea tell a long convoluted story about the
dormitory she used to live in in Moscow, and I could understand everything she was
saying. Not just the gist, but all the individual words and their meanings. When my
turn to speak came, though, I sounded like a gibbering wreck who'd never spoken a word
of Georgian in his life! So annoying.

I'm still reading ჯინსების თაობა - I have about 15 pages to go but can't seem
to get myself over that final hump. So hold off on the congratulatory cards and
flowers for a while longer. I've also been reading a short story by აკა მორჩილაძე,
who is a very popular and prolific contemporary Georgian writer, about the time between
the collapse of the Soviet Union and the Rose Revolution, when Georgia was, to put it
rather crudely, in all sorts of shit. So now I know what a კაი ბიჭი is (I guess it
kind of corresponds to チンピラ in Japanese).

Sad news here in Tokyo. Gaumarjos, the Georgian restaurant in Gotanda, is closing down
at the end of this month. I have been twice since I heard the bad news, once with my
classmates and once with other friends, to pay my respects and fill up on ხაჭაპური
and ხინკალი. I also attempted to make ხაჭაპური at home, and it wasn't bad at all -
not great either, mind you, but not bad.

I am still a non-smoker after 1 month, 5 days, and 10 hours. Giving up smoking is not
really all that difficult at all. Don't know why it took me so long. Unfortunately I
seem to have replaced my nicotine addiction with one for chocolate so I am piling on
the pounds. Might have to renew the gym subscription at some point.

The Gold LIst thingamajig is still going well, and I have decided for definite that I
am going to visit Georgia in July next year, and possibly again in September.

Have a smashing Christmas everyone. Hmm, I don't even know how to say Merry Xmas in
Georgian. გილოცავთ შობას?

Edited by TixhiiDon on 17 December 2010 at 3:15am

1 person has voted this message useful



TixhiiDon
Tetraglot
Senior Member
Japan
Joined 3772 days ago

772 posts - 1473 votes 
Speaks: English*, Japanese, German, Russian
Studies: Georgian

 
 Message 184 of 431
23 December 2010 at 2:03am | IP Logged 
I can confirm after a quick glance at Dodona Kiziria's masterpiece in the not exactly
crowded field of Georgian language teach-yourself books that "Merry Christmas" in
Georgian is indeed გილოცავთ შობას, so გილოცავთ შობას.

Also, as if the season is not filled with enough miracles, I finished ჯინსების თაობა
last night. I have now read a novel in Georgian. I think I shall have it engraved on
my gravestone: "He was average in most respects but he did read a novel in Georgian".
Very good novel it was too, although the English translation was laughably bad (and
laughably badly manufactured - it fell apart bit by bit as I was using it whereas the
Georgian version stayed perfectly intact) so if anyone fancies reading it they'll have
to learn some Georgian to actually enjoy the experience.

Last Wednesday class of the year last night. I was utterly knackered so it wasn't much
fun. I'll be glad of the break. Tonight will be my last language exchange with Medea
for 2010. I've bought her Alan Bennett's "Talking Heads" as a Christmas present, but I
had a glance through it and it is much more difficult than I remember, what with all
those Northern-isms and brand names, so I don't think it's going to do much for her
confidence in English. Sorry Medea!










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