Later On

A blog written for those whose interests more or less match mine.

Daily minutiae

with 4 comments

First, I finished the Spanish final. I think I did okay but I run to careless mistakes, so who knows? I did realize that instead of “no me gusta mucho” I would have better written simply “odio,” but after beating myself up about that for a while, I realized that if I didn’t stop I would replay the whole final, line by line, and beat myself up over better answers I could have given — when asked what I liked, for example, I replied “perritos” and then, later, driving home, realized that of course I should have added “y vino y la luz de candelas y caminar por la playa en la luz de la luna” (and that is indeed what I could have written: that’s all in my working vocabulary, thanks to Anki).

So I decided I had to stop thinking about it and occupy myself otherwise. And on the way home I stopped by the library to pick up a book on hold: Moonwalking with Einstein, by Joshua Foer, so I’ve started that. The book is mesmerizing—and to learn that such a complex, hard-learned set of skills and techniques was simply discarded… though of course Plato warned of something similar: that printed books will never engage the mind in the way that dialogue with another can. At any rate, Foer’s book is relevant to this language learning, interesting in itself, and suggests an on-going exercise in learning memory skills might be fun. And useful, of course.

Written by LeisureGuy

31 May 2011 at 4:11 pm

Posted in Books, Daily life

4 Responses

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  1. That’s the only way to take exams. Study, go in relaxed, do your best, then forget about it. Congratulations on finishing the course.


    31 May 2011 at 4:16 pm

  2. And even better, now that I think about it, is that I stopped on the way home and, true to my upbringing, bought some food to celebrate, but I do notice that I’ve changed my selections: fresh red raspberries, nonfat yogurt, and low-fat buttermilk. (I’ve had a hankering for buttermilk. Now I need to make cornbread: cold cornbread broken up in buttermilk, with a lashing of black pepper: yum.)


    31 May 2011 at 4:21 pm

  3. Ahhhh, you are a teacher’s pride and joy….BUT, what was the question?? Te gusta el vino?? Good answer would be No me gusta mucho. Odio is VERY strong in Spanish…not the way we say I HATE reality shows, I HATE Walmart, I HATE final exams so freely in English. Coincidentially, adorar (to adore) in Spanish is pretty much reserved for God… so no I ADORE those tapas, I ADORE your haircut, etc.
    Now write me a ten-page paper on what is odious and what is adorable about Spanish! Congrats on finishing the semester!

    Maria Luisa

    1 June 2011 at 1:07 pm

  4. Aha. Good info. A dictionary is a poor guide to how a language is used, I have to say. I’m very glad I’m gradually getting to where I can read.

    The paired questions were: ¿Qué te gusta? and ¿Qué no te gusta? My response to the second was “No me gusta mucho la gente quién habla junto en la clase.”

    Wonder whether the questions were more like ¿Qué te gustan? That would make more sense. (I’m relying on memory.)

    I assume that “qué” lacks a plural?


    1 June 2011 at 1:19 pm

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