German 101

posted in: Communication | 0

I have always planned to learn more languages – but have been stalled at my French plateau.  You get to a certain point with a language and it’s really difficult to advance.  I’ve forgotten most of my ancient Greek, even the alphabet.  But with the approach of our trip to Europe, I felt I should get a handle on German.  I feel like it’s important to at least make an effort to learn the native language of a country.

So with this goal in mind, I put a video on hold at the VPL called “Lerne Deutsche.”  I knew I was taking a bit of a risk, borrowing a video sight unseen.  And as the German youth in Speedos frolicked on the beach during the opening orchestrated anthem, I knew I was in for more than a dip in a cultural experience.  It turns out that this video is from 1983.

Here are some of the side-splitting highlights (or borrow it and see for yourself – it’s good medicine):

1. Parts of the body – 30-second, zoomed in 360 of a person’s chin

2. Colours – Young boy holding a series of square pieces of cardboard that he had coloured on with markers, but all of them look white and you can’t see the colours.

3. The sheer randomness of the video – switching from months of the year to a phrase like “the butterfly in the garden” and “doing a summersault” (with a 19 year old in a Speedo, of course, doing a summersault on the beach).

4. Ridiculously sensual shots of people in Speedos acting out emotive actions (crying, singing, laughing).

5. Teenaged male putting on talcum powder.

Somehow, I’m starting to feel more comfortable with the 19-letter words and the pronunciation.  Hopefully by March I will be able to competently read words out of a phrase book or off of signs.

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