Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Greetings and Salutations

What I'm reading right now: How to Reboot Your Novel by Larry Brooks

A brief introduction.

In my a dolt life (read adult) I often tell my coworkers and particularly my training classes that nobody likes my jokes as much as I do. This may or may not be true, but as no man is an island, I have yet to find, think, compose, speak, or desire anything that somebody at some point in history hasn't already--you're unique, just like everybody else--so I concluded perhaps there are a handful of warped personalities out there who do like my jokes, perhaps even as much as I do.

Logo-what? Great question.
log-o-phile [law-guh-fahyl, log-uh-]

a lover of words.
Origin: logo- + -phile
Dictionary.com Unabridged

Etymology: New Latin -philia + Greek -akos, adjective suffix

1 : one having a tendency toward
2 : one having an abnormal appetite or liking for

There are few things I love in this world as much as language. Words words everywhere and I could drink them all. Twist them, turn them, taste them, I love how they feel on my tongue. I am so enthralled by language that it was the driving force behind my one piece of worldly validation on a tree carcass--I have a degree in American Sign Language, Interpreting.

Being spatial, ASL (or in this case Sign Language--as there are many, not just American) has a different twist than any other language family on the planet. Everything else is linear, and thus I had to know the grace and beauty that is American Sign Language. I also speak French and love that language for its own reasons. We can discuss that in a later post.

Is there a language that you love? Something unique about it that makes you love it? I'd love to know what it is.

My most favorite of all the languages is my mother tongue. I've heard that there's possible more words in the English language than any other language. I don't know if that's true, but I want to believe. Where else then would a logophile put down roots?

I've also heard it said that English is one of the hardest languages to learn. Having learned two other languages myself, and having taught English as a second language, I disagree with that statement. Learning the morphology of English, the sounds of the letters, and putting them into the correct order then arranging words as per the English directive does not appear to be as challenging in English as other languages.

I used to make a comparison at this point to Korean. From my limited interaction with those who have tried to learn the language, I had the impression that the level of difficulty was greatly increased. What I've come to learn from native speakers and those fluent in Korean (as a second language) is that linguistically it makes sense. That the sounds of the symbols seem to mimick the shape of the tongue required to produce the sound. What this leads me to believe is the greatest difficulty to learning any language is how it is used: the sarcasm, the nuances, the meanings behind what is said and English is right up there in that department, an insight that stepped up and slapped me in the face when I became an ASL interpreter. Which was the best job I ever had. I still look at them with the highest regard and admiration.

An additional facet to this learning curve, I believe, is whether the new language falls within the same language family as your native tongue: French to Spanish would be easier than English to Japanese. But I digress, when it comes to why I love English, well, with so many words at our disposal, we can have ever so much fun.

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