Monday, July 18, 2011

Proto, Pardon, and Positivity

"For there is neither good nor bad, but thinking makes it so." -Hamlet

"Jam temp' esta'! [The time has come!]" -L.L. Zamenhof (from a proto-Esperanto hymn)

"The greatest thing you'll ever learn is just to love and be loved in return!" -Christian, Moulin Rouge!

Well, I have two options. I could hang my head in shame at being a terrible blogger, OR I could forge ahead in a surge of positivity.

I don't know about you, but I like some positivity.

So, quick update about my life in the last six and a half months:

-I officially committed to attending Chapman University
-I had a significant other, and (albeit briefly) got to experience romantic attraction from another for the first time
-I took IB exams and died a thousand deaths
-I finished my fourth and final year of formal French education

Really, it was dealing with these things that kept me from both studying Esperanto and blogging, so... [commence guilt trip] ...... [guilt trip over]

Moving on.

So, have you spent the summer catching up?

Yes. Sort of.

I've been working on two plays about an hour from where I live since before I graduated, and even when school was over, my entire afternoon and evening till 10 PM was dominated by The Pajama Game (still is, actually) and Hamlet (just finished on Saturday).


Last year, on my first "I'm learning Esperanto" kick, I watched a video by Swiss psychologist and prominent Esperantist Claude Piron, in which he asserted that a person could devote a mere ten minutes a day to the study of Esperanto, and be conversationally fluent in a matter of three months.

I've read some of Piron's articles on his website, in both English and French, and I did not see a hint of kookiness in him, so I think it's safe to trust him on this one.

The task seems much less daunting when it's only ten minutes a day. There's so much flexibility within that. It could be ten minutes reading posts on the forums (Esperanto, not English). Ten minutes of Esperanto Hangman. Another lesson in the "Ana Pana" correspondence course for beginners. There are days when I retain more or less than others, but overall it's a pretty easy schedule to keep.

You've made progress?

YES. It's a challenge (starting out again, I found the reverse of the issue I was having at the beginning of the school year; I knew the French word and thought that that would be similar to if not identical to the Esperanto), but I'm doing it. I'm almost done with the Ana Pana course, and even though I still apologize for errors constantly, I've lost my fear of posting in the Esperanto forums. The people are very understanding and helpful; a Frenchman even sent me a private message to politely correct the French on my profile and told me that he would be available in case I needed any more help with either French or Esperanto.

I'm grateful that I've found a community of infinitely patient people, who know that it's hard to learn a language, but are so excited that you're learning that they'll help you or forgive you for your mistakes. It's lovely to be in such a non-judgmental place.

And with that, dear readers, I must conclude. My spirits grow dull, and fain I would beguile the-

Whoops, sorry. Too much Hamlet.

What I mean is, I'm sleepy, and I still need to get my studies in for the night.

If you're interested, here's the Claude Piron video:

Ĝis la revido, amikoj!