Now I feel like a typically English language moron. There's so many polyglots here!
* English (I've almost got the hang of it) * Greek (basic only, despite going to evening classes for several years) * French (...nah, forget that, because I have)
---- I'm sure I've only got one spare "slot" in my brain for a foreign language. I've found that since starting learning Greek, I've forgotten all my French. Whenever I try to think of a French word for something, the Greek pops up instead. Yesterday I realised that I can't even remember enough to ask "how old are you". It made me think - at what point does a lack of knowledge of a language decrease to the point where you can no longer say you "know" the language?
--- The really sad thing is that I had to edit this post to correct some spelling mistakes. Now I'm beginning to wonder if I even know English! [ February 09, 2006: Message edited by: Dave Lenton ]
There will be glitches in my transition from being a saloon bar sage to a world statesman. - Tony Banks
..i speak the language of music, and love (ok this one i am lying)
Joined: Feb 17, 2004
Originally posted by Dave Lenton:
I'm sure I've only got one spare "slot" in my brain for a foreign language. I've found that since starting learning Greek, I've forgotten all my French. Whenever I try to think of a French word for something, the Greek pops up instead. Yesterday I realised that I can't even remember enough to ask "how old are you". It made me think - at what point does a lack of knowledge of a language decrease to the point where you can no longer say you "know" the language?
It's normal, if you don't practise a language, you forget it. I studied German for 4 years, and i can t remember how to say how old are you, wie alt bist du?, i can remember aproximately . However, because you ve already learned it, next time it will take you 2 times less effort to relearn it. Especially if you go to that country, it will just pop back in after a few weeks. And anyway, the other important thing is that people appreciate the effort of you learning their language, and this is specially true for some eu countries.
Roger Johnson: Learning languages is a waste of time and effort. God should have created human with only one language. Imagine all the wonderful things you can do with the time wasted on learning foreign languages.
Originally posted by John Smith: From Genesis 11: "Now the whole earth used the same language and the same words."
You may want to read Genesis further to see what happened after that.
In other words, if you didn't have to waste time learning foreign languages, you could build a tower to heaven to wage war on God!
Now, if you also avoid wasting the time some people spend learning geography, you could use that time to watch baseball on TV, spend hours in a car driving to and from work, take a second job to pay for a newer car, eat at MacDonalds, etc. Maybe even invade Iraq! :-)
As for me, I can: (1) read simple Dutch; (2) make out many newspaper headlines in Scandinavian languages; (3) speak German; (4) read simple Yiddish; (5) translate Biblical Hebrew a little bit.
I spent a bit of time studying Spanish, back when I had the idea of moving to South Florida; but I didn't get very far. I still think I ought to put some more effort into it, if only so that I'll be able to get around in America when I get old. :-)
Originally posted by Rajeev Ravindran: what is ASL (American Sign Language) ? i first thought Age, Sex n Location. hope this is not a stupid post
Not a stupid question at all. ASL (American Sign Language) is used by the deaf and hard-of-hearing to communicate.
Here is the ASL alphabet -- which you use to spell words (its called finger spelling). Many words also have their own signs this website demonstrates a lot of different signs.
Every language has its own sign language, and in fact British Sign Language is different than American Sign language (for example the BSL alphabet is done on two hands and is very different than ASL).
Originally posted by Bear Bibeault: I'm not sure if I'm still fluent enough for extended conversation. It's been years since I've used it -- I learned ASL so I could converse with a deaf friend in the mid to late 80's.
My finger spelling is still fine though.
My cousin is deaf, and recently I've started talking with her in sign over our webcams -- its great. Check out the website I linked to above www.aslpro.com, its got tons of videos of different signs, and even a sign and fingerspelling quiz. [ February 15, 2006: Message edited by: Jessica Sant ]