Thursday, April 30, 2009

Language lessons

You know, I am all about learning and have always enjoyed learning new things, one of my favorites being new languages. However, the people who teach us can be somewhat challenged. Yesterday's Polish word on my Blog was "candle" and that's a great word and can be used in so many practical ways, but the example given was "The candle flickered ominously". Now, how many of you have EVER felt the need to say that? As many candles as I have been around (even caught my hair on fire from one at church, so that candle REALLY was flickering ominously), yet I never thought of or said that phrase, but maybe my daughter-in-law did because she pointed it out to me! See, that one great opportunity and I never used that sentence, nor did Brande, who said something like "holy smoke, your hair is on fire", without pointing a finger to the offending candle (isn't she sweet?).

Or how about "the hat of my aunt" as a practical phrase? That one has been a text book winner for ages. Now, maybe, if your aunt had a hat like this, it would be worth talking about...

One of the best ways to learn a language is the way I learned to speak Spanish as a young girl...find a good looking Argentine boyfriend (then later on, marry the best man, Mario, who was raised in Venezuela!) I heard him speaking with gusto (Spanish for "I might set YOUR hair on fire") to his brother while he was on the phone with me and learned how to say "I will break your head if you don't leave me alone now" in Spanish. Haven't ever had to use it, but I'm ready should the occasion arise. Normally, I would write down things I wanted to say in English and Miguel would translate them into Spanish so we finally could have a whole conversation with no aunt's hats in it.

You do need to be careful when learning a new language and not be overly confident. I had a sweet friend, Mena who was from Portugal and wanted to work in the Spanish speaking, credit card processing part of our bank. She asked me to help her with her Spanish, so in the little time that we had, we worked diligently (it helped that Portuguese is pretty close to Spanish). She got the job and called me not too long afterward, half laughing and half crying. One of the guys left on his lunch hour for an appointment, maybe the doctor or dentist, but got back late and felt awkward. Mena said to him, in what she thought was good Spanish "Me parece que estas embarazado" which she thought meant "It looks as if you are embarassed" but translates into "It looks as if you are pregnant". Use caution, friends, languages are a challenge.

The other day I gave the webdings a hard time (which they so richly deserved...and, by the way, Michael figured out what I wrote by copying, pasting into word and changing it to A REAL FONT...isn't he so clever and cute?) Now I have a new "holy smoke...what on earth" and maybe someone out there in blogland has an answer. Many times, recently, I have been working on my tomorrow's post the day before and then sometimes polishing it up the next morning. However, a few times I have had it all done and ready to post automatically or so I thought. The other day I chose it to post on the next day's date and put in 3 a.m. just so it would be all ready, and there might even be a little comment awaiting me. I got to the computer at a little after nine and confidently checked in...but NO POST. I changed it to 2 a.m. and hit publish and voila (that's French for it's about rootin tootin time). Does anyone out there know what time zone Blogger is using??? It has to be another planet, like Neptune time or maybe even some new galaxy!!

Guess I need to tell a story on myself as well. About ten years ago I was blessed with being able to go to Poland with my late husband. Mario was only able to stay for two weeks and I stayed on for four more. My Polish was learned out of desparation (no teacher, no school, just me asking poor Mario how and why. His primary language was Spanish and he never went to a Polish school either, just spoke it at home) as his parents didn't speak English (you can do this in Chicago, live there a bazillion years and never learn English).

We stayed with some family and some friends. The friends liked going everywhere, like to mountain tops by cable cars and then climbing all the way back down!!! While on one of these jaunts we needed to use the restroom. A lady kept knocking on my stall and I thought I was saying "excuse me" so she'd know someone was in there, but Danya was in the stall next to me cracking up laughing....turns out I was saying an informal "come in please"!!!

Even though my posts usually have a lot of humor and funny things in them, just to let you know, I DO worry about the world and the swine flu and wars and tensions, BUT I also pray a lot and go to church a lot and belong to prayer groups (like today). As I have said before this little blog of mine is supposed to be a little oasis where we will be counting as many blessings as we can find and laughing and healing so we can heal the rest of the world, one person at a time.

Here is today's joke:

Wisdom of Children

A little girl went up to her mother one day while holding her stomach saying, "Mommy, my stomach hurts." Her mother replied, "That's because it's empty, you have to put something into it!"
Later that day they went to a nice family dinner at grandma's house. Everyone was at the table enjoying their meal when grandma began to feel bad. Holding her head she said, "I have such a terrible headache!"
The little girl looked up at her giving her the sweetest smile that any little child could give. Then she said, "That's because it's empty, you have to put something into it!"

~~~~Thank you Lord for all of our languages, may we use them for peace, love and unity.


  1. Marcy, I love reading your blog so much! And it is a little oasis I think for all of us. We are blessed to have your humor in our lives. Lord knows everyone can use a little more of it. Thank you for that!

  2. I think it's great to come here and get away from the 'seriousness' of our lives and all that goes on in the world sometimes!
    And I think you are so right about praying on things, and then having the peace that you know God is taking care of His world.
    I love your stories! And I loved the joke!
    Have a great day!

  3. Hi friend,

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  4. Hello, Marcy, now I know you wanted to see Ray hugging President Obama, but he wouldn't go that far, but he did do a little more editing in your honor!

    I really love your blog! You inspire us to Faith, Love, and humor!

  5. Oh Marcy what a beautiful person you are, your prayers, humor and caring will make this world of ours a much better place. I know you have touched my heart. Take care my friend, have a great day....:-) Hugs, Bernie

  6. Marcy, I enjoyed reading your post ♥ I wish I could speak another language. My father was German, but for some reason, he never encourged us to learn. In college I took spanis, but it was formal, and with no one to talk with soon after the class it was forgotten. Thank you for your lovely comments on my blog. I am so glad I found you. I too love coming here. Blessings to you my friend ♥

  7. Marcy, I love your humor, and I don't think anyone would think less of you for being lighthearted on your blog, quite the contrary!


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