Friday, May 11, 2012

Thing Twenty-Two: Parle, Parlo, Spreche, Hablo

I am what I like to call "tourist good" in several languages: French, Italian, German, and Spanish. By "tourist good," I mean that I can order from a menu, buy things in shops, get directions, and figure out most signs, train/bus/subway fare machines, and explanatory plaques. I can even figure out non-commerce-related speech pretty often, provided the speaker doesn't go too fast.

What I am TERRIBLE at is speaking myself. In fact, one of the few things I can say in each of those languages is "I'm very sorry. My [language] is very poor. I speak like a baby." And that really is the problem! I speak like a baby - my pronunciation is a little bit off, I use only very simple words, and my conjugation is totally random.

I think it's time to get at least one of my languages up to the point where I could theoretically say I was fluent. Probably Spanish, as that's the one most likely to actually come up.

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