Wednesday, November 10, 2010

A tragic Movie and a couple lessons.

I'm at a level in Norwegian where I don't really need to be studying lessons, at least consistently. Of course, I still need to use a dictionary at times, but all the grammar is there, at my disposal. And I do have my trusty Essential Norwegian Grammar book to consult when I need it.

So I'm mostly reading, writing and either listening to Norwegian radio (P4 is a favorite) or watching something.

I had recently read a good review of a movie titled "Sammen". It means "Together" in Norwegian. So I got the movie and watched it a couple nights ago. I should mention that I had no subtitles for the movie. It's a good story, but really pretty depressing. It's a story of a family (father, mother and son). The mother dies in a freak accident early on and is witnessed by both the father and son. They're then left to deal with their grief. I won't get into the details of each character's grief, but they deal with it in very different ways. The father becomes very self-destructive. And, possibly because of this, I found the language used by the father's character (played by Frithjof Såheim) the most difficult to understand. His character was alternatively emotional, drunk, etc. and because of this, his speech was slurred or mumbled through a good portion of the film. By far the easiest to understand was the son (played by Odin Waage). The mother's speech was also very clear and easy to understand, but her appearance was so brief that, aside from one scene where she was whispering to her son, I wasn't left with much else of an impression. I am going to watch the movie again in a couple days to see if I notice any improvement in understanding the father's character. But I think I'll also try and search for another film with Frithjof in it to see if there's a major difference in his speech.

As for Turkish, I've gone through two lessons of the Pimsleur course so far. Pimsleur gets a bad rap for spending too much time explaining things in English, but I've found the courses to be fairly good at getting me up and running with the mechanics of a language. I also have the Linguaphone PDQ Turkish course which I'll use to augment my early listening skills. I've gone through one lesson with this, and it was mind-numbingly simple. But just glancing at the course, it seems to progress quickly, so we'll see. Turkish is the first language to be of interest to me because of its grammar. The Pimsleur course immediately started me off with a couple key pieces of grammar, in addition to teaching me first and second person singular verbs in the present tense, yes/no word and verb formation, as well as asking a question. So I'm feeling pretty good about that. Remember, I'm starting at absolute zero with Turkish, so feeling like I've learned something useful early on is important.

I'll probably focus on Polish later in the week, mostly by listening and reading the news. Because I'm just starting with Turkish, I felt at this point trying to cram three languages in a day is a bit much. Maybe when I get further along with it, I'll do something with each language every day.


  1. Merhaba and hej Rick!

    I am a fellow language learner of Danish and Turkish. My native language is German and my blog is written in Dutch. I am interested in reading your blog. Have a look at my blog as well:
    Kind regards, Fasulye

  2. Cool!... will do. I'm always glad to meet and follow the studies of fellow language learners.

  3. There is an excellent online-dictionary for Turkish to English (but also to other languages such as Dutch, Danish, Italian, French, Spanish, Portuguese), here is the website: Fasulye

  4. Hey, that site looks useful!


  5. What du you speak: Nynorsk or Bokmal? The written Bokmal is very similar to Danish, by the way. But our adult eduction center offers Nynorsk. Fasulye

  6. Bokmål. Yeah, I don't have much trouble reading Danish. Pronunciation varies quite a bit, though.