The other day, I confessed to my dad that I was kind of embarassed about my Russian dictionary. I only bought it two years ago, but the Russian to English section’s got a kind of grime on it from where I constantly turn the pages. Reading a tough book like Master and Margarita, I still probably look up about five to ten words a page. I might even be underexaggerating.
Well, the good news is that my dad said his dictionary has that. He considers it a kind of badge of honor that he’s done a lot of work in learning the language. Now I feel better. The Russian dictionary is probably the book I use the most. When I bought it I was just beginning third year Russian, the year when you’ve really got to pick up some vocabulary. I’ll probably be looking up words forever, the rate I’m going.
A new tool I’ve been using to learn is livemocha.com. You can submit a paragraph that you’ve written or a dialogue you’ve spoken to the website, and then a bunch of native speakers will leave their comments and correction. (You can do the same for Brazilians, Chinese, etc. who are working on English). It’s amazing to get all these comments within fifteen minutes from generous Russians, and it takes a second to give someone a quick help or thank you. Love it! And I love it when somebody writes ochen’ khorosho (very good). Just makes my day.
Speaking of love, I love Janelle Monae. Her music and her style are just transporting and beautiful. My favorite songs by her so far are Many Moons and Cold War. She is the way of the future, and when she’s good she’s blazingly good.