Wednesday, December 29, 2010

The Best of Rosetta Stone

So, as I mentioned, I've been studying Turkish in hopes of getting my relatively minimal language skills up to a level that might garner me some additional points.  Owing to the complete nonexistence of Turkish classes, tutors, or even restaurants in Colorado, all of my study has been done online.  One of the only sizable programs available in Turkish is the Leviathan of the language-learning world -- Rosetta Stone.

Many (all?) of you are already familiar with Rosetta Stone, I'm sure.  For those few who are not, it's really quite simple: Rosetta Stone teaches you a foreign language without ever using your native language, mostly through use of pictures.  A picture of an apple is presented, say, followed by the word "elma".  This, they argue, is how children learn to speak.  It's also an awfully cheap way to make an international language program, I would wager.

There are two possible "hiccups" to this approach:
  1. You learn to say rather mundane things like "This is a cat", or "I eat bicycle" long before you learn potentially important things like "What city am I in?", and "Does this look infected?" 
  2. Rosetta requires an awful lot of pictures, especially when attempting to teach you concepts like word order, subject-verb agreement, and reflexive noun generation.  This, naturally, leads to some curious pictures.
I took it upon myself to collect and catalog a selection of these pictures for you, readers.  I give you, "The Best of Rosetta Stone".

Russians have a famously short fuse when it comes to street signals.  

Exposed insulation, burlap sacks laid over the floor, and a crippled dog who appears to be tied to something out of frame... I would consider this a missed opportunity to teach the phrase "May I please stay on the bus until the next stop?"

"When I'm not out touring with Eve 6, I prefer to lounge about menacingly at the Scottsdale IKEA"

"May the properly exposed half of my face help you?"

"I'll take 5 of them"

I am at a loss as to what red shoes ever did to her.

"Hey... little girl..."

"Two passes for the Jerry Springer Museum, please"

Hipster Fashion 2010 redux: flannel shirt, wellies, 700 pound dog.

"Well, this one certainly smells more pineapple-y"

I don't remember what this was supposed to teach me, but all I can think of now is "poisonous field".

He'd never learn to ride it without a little motivation

"This is all the cake I deserve"

"Might I interest you in some intensely creepy produce, or offputting eggs?"

"1973: Memphis.  Before Superhero Rights"
Kadınlar kullanmıyor.

And finally, I leave one for you.  Feel free to submit captions in the comments section below.

-- Submit Caption Below --

Thursday, December 23, 2010

An unscheduled leave of scheduled absence

So, I've been gone a little while.  I've thought about you all often, and faithfully read your delightful blogs, but I've been woodshedding (in the musical sense, not the punditry-prone sense).

You see, I've got a lot to do.  As astute readers will remember, back in July (when I last posted, with nary a mention of my unceremonious absence) I was sitting on the register, working everything else out.  Well I'm still on the register, but events are progressing nonetheless.