Tag Archives: learning

Improving one’s English vocabulary

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I was thinking about the standards i hold myself up for with japanese with the goal of understand 95%~ of the text that i’m reading on websites. of course if it’s of no interest to me i’m not going to waste my time googling that to find out what it means or what it is (sometimes it’s just something i just wouldn’t know because i’m not japanese and i haven’t lived in japan or whatever). Then I was thinking hey i haven’t reached this goal with english with the 95%~ comprehension for websites (well you could argue, not knowing or being unsure of the meaning of a couple adjectives/verbs/nouns doesn’t necessarily kill the comprehension… depends how important it is to the whole picture). It really is dependent on what i’m reading in english even if it’s a blog if it’s well-written they’ll be complex grammar where i’ll have to read the sentence again or they’ll be words I don’t know.  Some people are just good writers and they just use words i don’t know. Whether it’s blog entries or news articles, if it’s fairly well-written then i will come across words i do not know.  I’m not gonna start reading the new york times or whatever other boring ass newspaper to improve my vocabulary. that’s torture. I don’t do that for japanese and i’m not gonna do that for english. But I found a good way to learn vocabulary.

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BTW you should know that firefox has awesome plug-ins/add-ons for looking up words and for saving text to file while you’re reading the internet. i downloaded dictionary.com and if you double click it tells you the meaning (I like merriam webster better but fast and efficient is KICKASS).  the sucky part is if you click on the audio thing for the audio bit it’ll take a while so i will actually hear the prnounciation faster by going to m-w and looking up the word than waiting for the add-on to fetch the audio.  I think with english especially hearing the word is useful and sometimes it’s spelled really weird or it’s ambiguous with the pronounciation. even if they have that gibberish to tell you how to pronounce it, it’s just a lot more clear with the audio. i’m checking out other add-ons so it’s more easy to collect/mine the stuff like with rikai-sama if you press S it saves the SENTENCE, DEFINITION, into a notepad file!!! like how awesome is that. so i’m seeing if any of the plug-ins are as kickass as that on firefox.

SO ANYWAYS the most important part is the SOURCE of the sentence/sparagraphs that you leran the vocabulary from. it has to be not too difficult/ridiculous/useless/archaic/etc and at the same time it has to hold your interest… otherwise why the hell would the context help you remember if you don’t give a shit about the actual thing you’re reading ie crappy newspapers.  It’s like AJATT  it has to be something you enjoy.

So this is what I found really useful/helpful and i think it could be applicable to other people … well bear with me. i hope somebody gets something out of what i wrote.

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I find mad men really useful for learning vocabulary.  i look up words they use in the show and what i always always do starting since some season of mad men is I read  other people’s thoughts and analysis of the episode. ONE is because the show mad men is just very sophisticated like the dialogue is just not straight forward sometimes i miss out or i misinterpret????? TWO it’s just a well-done and there’s a lot of shit going on (If you don’t think so, you need to venture out into the INTERNET.  THREE even if i were to re-watch it, i wouldn’t get as much out of it compared to just reading somebody else’s thoughts about it. other people just better at getting stuff out of that show.  FOUR lots of mad men fans do it. FIVE it makes me want to watch more actively for the next episode like i want to notice stuff as much as the other peeps. SIX mad men fans are smart/educated (some of them are probably old right? like they were actually alive in the 60s lol) . some stuff i’ve seen written by mad men fans are just so well-written with the sentence/paragraph I have to re-read or the big words I don’t know. SEVEN it’s season 6, i forget stuff lol…. like i said this show’s well-done with the continuity and all that. i’ll literally watch an episode there’s some character and i have no idea who it is ( I couldn’t figure it out just from watching the ep because i like said mad men is never relaly that explicit and clear) or i forgot who it was (they showed up in some other season) and then i have to refresh myself lol.  I watch it once a year when it airs so….

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Even though they’re using big words I care and I know what they’re talking about (the thing they’re describing) because I watched the episode. It’s sort of a game too like they’ll describe the character as some word I don’t know and I’ve seen the episode so I’ll be like oh   i think that’s a fancy word for __ and then i can see if i’m right. but usually now a days i have no imagination so i don’t even guess lol. The reason it works so well for me is because it’s so well-written and i really care about what the person writes about. it’s just the perfect environment for learning the vocab.

Now I don’t know what to do with the vocabulary. I saved the sentences with the definition on a notepad which i later transfer to EVERNOTE (kickass progrma, highly reocmmended thank you tofugu though their entries of late are complete shit , very lazy for the most part) . I looked at the sentences i collected they really are a pleasure to read lol… like no wonder i looked it up. I’ve always looked up words when i read particularly well-written stimulating blog entries or news articles or whateve rbut i never collected them. but i feel like collecting is helpful because the context is just so compatible with me. like i realy really give a shit!  I don’t know about adding the sentences to anki or anything like that. I do that with japanese and i don’t want to do that with english. english is my native language even if my vocab is low compared to people who read many more books that i have. I do want to improve my vocabulary like anyone else (who has a brain). if you don’t know the awesomeness/benefits of reading and vocabulary on YOUR LIFE, then you need to read up on that. I was literally tortured by people who do not read much/possess much vocabulary which was evident in their vapidly empty annoying blithering conversations. check out my lang-8 for that, you gotta be my friend to read it though!

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so I found an awesome source to TAP to get the words that i do not know that i want to know. who wants to learn from a list from sat or act or gre or whatever…. half the crap just seems useless becaues you never heard of it. it relaly is like AJATT you gotta find something that’s enjoyable.  I do have a desire to improve my vocabulary and i’ve found the right medium. I’m not sure if this works with other shows…  mad men is just so SPECIAL AND well-done and there really is a lot to talk about plus some shows why would you care enough to read about other people’s thoguhts lol ie gossip girl/anything on cw for that matter. of course that show would attract fans who are good at writing and intelligent lol.  I’m also reading books too btw it’s just hard because I want to read japanese books too lol.

Basically I encourage looking up words while reading the internet since there are some awesome tools. there’s no reason not to. it’s 2013 bitch!  I checked out chrome, chrome has awesome addons/extensions too… the dictionary for that fetches the audio instantaneously!! so perhaps that’s a perk that can’t go ignored. hearing the word is really helpful to remembering it so that the next time you come across it, they’ll be a higher chance of having some feeling of familiarity.

here’s a copy paste of the stuff just so yo know what i mean… more clearly. if you haven’t seen mad men season 6 up to episode 4 there might be SPOILERS… i hope most people will see what i pasted and go i don’t know those words eitther lol. that’s what i’m thinking but i’ve been neglecting english for the past 4 years? loll with the japanese. I don’t want my english to turn to  crap or stop growing but at the same time iwant to also learn french a lot… not to fluency of course (that’s very very high goal) because first of all i haven’t even discovered what thing about france interests me.. the reason i mention french because it’s romance language and they’re based on latin so french itself would be helpful with expanding my english vocabulary but i’m curious as to how helpful learning french is vs. reading more in english with improving english vocabulary. because for korean if you don’t know hanja you can forget about expanding your vocabulary because it’s mostly (well  ALOT OF) 2 syllable words that all sound the same lol… the difference are so who gives a shit arbitrary unless you know what to look out for with hanja. i’m curious if it’s as helpful as hanja was for korean/japanese. but then again if i think of it as how helpful is korean for advanced japanese vocabulary (advanced? wtf is that lol.  I guess any and all words a fluent japanese speaker would know – that would encompass words that are based on kango, not based on kango) i don’t think it’s really helpful because they’re 2 different languages and they’re both based on kanji/hanja/chinese characters so not really…. not really for korean/japanese. yo know i read somewhere!!! it was on a language forum and they were talking about languages they’d forgotttten. someone said i forgot my damn german because all the common/daily convresation words are really similar to english and all the more advanced/difficult/beyond daily conversation words  are not similar to english THEN for french all the daily/conversation stuff was not similar to english but all the advanced words are similar to english… so they were saying german was more easily forgotten? unless they said it the other way around. so maybe learning french will be helpful  provided it is the way i wrote it.

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EXAMPLES

A self-proclaimed “rooster,” he shows Dick how a cock behaves, taking what he wants from women — both money and pleasure — without compunction.
+   a feeling of deep regret (usually for some misdeed)
After blithely saying that they’re both good company that he enjoys,
+  in a joyous manner

t was evident that Pete’s a whiner not a fighter, using aggrieved complaining to get what he thinks he deserves — and to deflect blame for his bad behavior.
+ aggrieve
v.
1. infringe on the rights of
+++ 2. cause to feel sorrow

patrician  [pə’trɪʃn]
n.
1. a person of refined upbringing and manners
2. a member of the aristocracy

let Ted Chaough know that Heinz ketchup (“the Coca-Cola of condiments”) was pursuing potential suitors, and what was thought of as a clandestine tryst
++ adj.  conducted with or marked by hidden aims or methods

it was something of a softball episode for the nascent director to undertake
+ the event of being born

and his sycophantic task of picking Pete up some toilet paper.
++
attempting to win favor from influential people by flattery
2. attempting

The fight between Peggy’s conscience and ambition wasn’t her only duel this week, there was also a pocket of resistance to quell from her male copywriting staff.
++
quell  [kwel]
v.
1. suppress or crush completely
2. overcome or allay

One line in particular of Trudy’s was a pithy summation of her lot, and strongly reminiscent of season three Betty,
++
adj.  concise and full of meaning

), Megan awkwardly tries to simply placate Don, walking on eggshells and cooking him a fancy chicken dinner (which came first, we wonder).
++ cause to be more favorably inclined; gain the good will of

But the real meat of the premiere (for me) is Don and Arnold Rosen. Don’s eagerness for Rosen’s approval has the tenor of a teenage crush.
++ Tenor: atmosphere, appearance, similarity to.

But Don, like Pete, is still stuck in the old model of infidelity, in which deception was de rigueur, even – or especially — when your spouse was knowing and   – or especially — when your spouse was knowing and agreeable (as Trudy was with Pete)
++ : prescribed or required by fashion, etiquette, or custom : proper

litigant
(law) a party to a lawsuit; someone involved in litigation

litigation  [‚lɪtɪ’geɪʃn]
n.  a legal proceeding in a court; a judicial contest to determine and enforce legal rights

palimony
palimony
n.  support paid by one half of an unmarried partnership after the relationship ends

A court-martial (plural courts-martial, as “martial” is postpositive) is a military court. A court-martial is empowered to determine the guilt of members of the armed forces subject to military law, and, if the defendant is found guilty, to decide upon punishment.

paleolithic  [‚peɪlɪəʊ’lɪθɪk /‚pæl-]
n.  second part of the Stone Age beginning about 750,00 to 500,000 years BC and lasting until the end of the last ice age about 8,500 years BC
adj.  of or relating to the second period of the Stone Age (following the eolithic)

assignation  [よs?g’ne??n]
n.
1. a secret rendezvous (especially between lovers)
2. the act of distributing by allotting or apportioning; distribution according to a plan

The season kick off is heavily preoccupied with death. It’s roughly two hours of Don and Roger looking, for different reasons, into the yawning maw of death and wondering what the whole point of their lives is.
maw = mouth
informal terms for the mouth

Here in paradise they look like the future, and this woman with her decrepit hairdo worships

foundling  [‘faʊndlɪŋ]
n.  a child who has been abandoned and whose parents are unknown

What has many times in the past been cited as a program about change came out screaming that it is more likely about similarity, repetition and the ephemeral nature of human life.
ephemeral  [-rəl]
n.  anything short-lived, as an insect that lives only for a day in its winged form
adj.  lasting a very short time

has ideologues arguing over gay marriage and austerity while people are starving and dying, and a public that has lost all hope for a better future.
_++ n.  the trait of great self-denial (especially refraining from worldly pleasures)

Only when we are back in the bitter cold of New York do we see that despite their beauty, their ruddy success, Don and Megan lack contemporary hair
++ adj.
1. inclined to a healthy reddish color often associated with outdoor life
2. of a color at the end of the color spectrum (next to orange); resembling the color of blood or cherries or tomatoes or rubies

She admires Joan as an intrepid groundbreaker who has conquered the big city and a male-dominated profession.
++= adj.  invulnerable to fear or intimidation

In that, they’re contrasted with the passivity and acquiescence of women like Sylvia,
++ v.  to agree or express agreement
acui-es (letter s)

t’s not entirely accurate to say that Joan is the distaff Don Draper—i
++ adj.  characteristic of or peculiar to a woman
++ the sphere of work by women

Mad Men nights of drunken revelry, involving making out with strange young men and visiting hippie haunts—disappearing into other guises in other words, flexing whatever privilege they have, be it glamor, money,

++ bar

喝を入れたくて反省文的なことを書きます。認めます  (したた) 

喝を入れたくて反省文的なことを書きます。認めます  (したた)
I remember browswing the AJATT blog a couple years ago. One thing that stood out to me was that I came across entries he wrote in Japanese as well as entries he wrote in english and then he wrote the japanese trnaslation/equivalent next to random english words/phrases/concepts  or the other way around (I thought it was really cool that he knew all these words in japanese that he knows what to translate/say his free-flowing english it to in japanese… it was really specific english vocab— just random nouns– that i don’t use at all so just that right there was enough but he also knew how to say it or directly translate it to japanese. i found it impressive. don’t know abt you.)
so recently I went on his blog again because he put up a new entry and i wanted to find this entry that he wrote in japanese… in a way or maybe it goes without saying “in a way” that that’s his way of
proving/showing how much japanes he has learned with his method and whatnot. I read it now, and i’m still impressed with his writing. some of it is a little sabui or donbiki さぶい・ドン引き just because that’s what it sounds like to me.
http://www.alljapaneseallthetime.com/blog/category/%E6%97%A5%E6%9C%AC%E8%AA%9E

EVEN taking his usage of pre-war kanji or kanji that is never used ie (the OTHER kanji for shimau. i only knew of 仕舞う since i’ve only seen that in the henkan and i’m using GOOGLE IME for god’s sakes) into consideration, I still find it impressive. personally, my japanese output is not that good imo. i’ve had people say to me, you seem so fluent in japanese by some japanese leraner lang-8 and obviously it’s only because they’re not as far as long as i am. i am hardly fluent and i don’t findmyself 100% satisifed with my japanese writing and i don’t feel as comfortable writing in ajpanese as in english and it takes longer to write (taking out henkan… just the time it takes for me think up stuff and how to word it or deciding which thing is the best)

the reason i’m so impressed is… i feel like what he wrote… i’m just assuming here … is unedited/uncorrected, just written by him and as far as i cantell, i don’t see any errors and i won’t even bother to check to see if the kanji usd to write the words that are never written in kanji are correct bc i know it’s correct without checking. he just has no reason to show-off or make his japanese seem better than it is. his japanese is what it is. i was looking at his entry in 2008 and i don’t remember if he started leraning japanese i n2004 or 2005 or 2006, i don’t remember the year and i don’t feel like browsing his site to find out but considering it’s a few yeras… it’s very impressive.

so reading it made me feel like i’ve been too lazy? brainwashed?  it’s a different type of motivation compared to my initial motivation of starting out in japanese which was half irritance/maybe jealousy of i can do that shit better and faster than you (check out the ABOUT ME page if you wanna know). rather than, omg he can write japanese this well, i can totally write just as well as he does or even better (he learned japanese fast so it’s like there’s no point in that either lol. my japaese was mad shitty at the 1.5 yyear mark especially output)…. i just feel disappointed in myself, losing to technology like the other idiots in this generation. im’ not pissed that my japanese writing is crapper than his, i accept it. that makes complete sense. it’s like those people that only come into contact with x language only in class and can’t speak/understand it. i’m just like wHAT ELSE DO YOU EXPECT.

what i’m saying i could be so much better at writing and understanding than the level i am at now.   but unforutnately this past year has  been a mess as far as efficiency and producation or whatever is concenered because of that damn iphone. BTW I think the way you position arms to use the iphone is not good for your health especially with prolonged periods AND ESPECIALLY the looking down pose.. LOOK UP DUDE LOL.   I know that i could be as good as him, or better or whatever if i was more focused and less distracted by stupid crap. by improving my writinng, i mean inputting like crazy. by inputting lke crazy, i mean enjoy the input …. that’s the only you can input for significant amounts of time.

by  losers in this generation losing to technology i mean people who only do facebook on their phone or computer or whatever or listen to rap or music really loud in their earbud – damaging their hearing to deafness and beyond, pissing eveyrone off, giving people unnecessary stress, subjecting people to noise that does not be subjected, play games on ipad/phone all day (especially people who do not turn the volume off). it’s one thing if you’re pissing away your time and potentital doing nothing with tecnolgo y but if you’re also going to bother other people  around you while you’re doing it, that’s just bs. that’s an exemplary example of failing at life in my opinion. especially people who do not care or are not EVEN AWARE (WTF DUDE. maybe it’s bc i’m asian but that shit really pisses me off). that’s copmlete bullshit. i hate people like that.  it’s another reason why eveyrone has every right to call americans or college students or black people or whoever lazy and that there’s no reason for illiteracy or monolingualism just because lots of poeple have lots of time that is being PISSED AWAY.  I’m not gonna go on to say my speech on how i feel so superior bc i spent my time with japanese/korean immersion and i got better with understanding etc… it’s just no matter how i look at it… time waste is time waste.

I always looked down on those people because they are frankly losers. some of those people are of course college students that i’ve seen/encountered since igo to college which is very expensive by the way.

technoology has gotten in the way of my studying of japanese. not even studying, just doing stuff in japanese because i’m at the advanced level. for example, my reading of japanese books has substantially  decreased compared to the previous years. it has to be attributed to the iphone.  because i just look up stuff/sites and read it on the iphone and bam my hours are gone. maybe half the stuff i read is japanese and half is in english . I just read whatever’s interesting but i just feel like i’m losing to technology.  i just don’t think it’s efficient . like yes, i can copy and paste the sentence i want but it takes all these clicks (jabs? what do you call this) to get to that area where i can paste it so i can acess it on the ocmputer later and sometimes it takes a while for that to load or wahtever. basically, a computer is more efficient for obvious reasons. and also just reading on that thing is just tiring and BAD for your EYES .  it’s just so easy to piss away time with smartphones with all them apps. I’m so glad KHATZ did this thing before smartphones became prevalent for some reason.  honestly, im’ just writing this as another reminder to myself DON’T BECOME LIKE THOSE PEOPLE. DON’T BEA LOSER (as in loser and as in losing).  i remind myself or think about it all the time but i can’t seem to stop this time wasting habit.

what the iphone is benenficial for, for me is the photo option because i can take pictures of stuff i want to look up later to add to my srs. so what i sorta wish is I never got a iphone and just got a really useful camera so i can take pictures of crap i want to look up that’s in japanese.  so what I’m saying I’m PRETTY SURE my japanese time was probaly better without the iphone just because i have mp3 player, my japanese books, the computer. but then again, the computer can distract me as well.  Idon’t know… tsk tsk. i’m just writing this for myself so ican stop pissing away time like them other losers. i don’t wanna be a LOSER!

Intriguing korean drama

I ran across this Korean drama: 닥치고 꽃미남밴드 (flower band something something) on youtube because of the videos they have on the side that’s supposedly related to videos you’ve watched. It’s quite interesting. I was watching/ignoring it while i was doing my anki reviews. Before I was watching some other korean drama while doing my anki reviews.

I like the show because the people are good looking (everyone looks unique && and no one has that dreaded dreaded japanese haircuts that japanese ikemen have. god those haircuts are terrible… their hair is too dman long damn it!) but not in the plastic surgery way ie… chang gun soku but does anyone think he’s good-looking anyhoo? he looked so much better before the plastic surgery. it’s quite a waste.  I tried to find reviews for this show but I only found a couple which only praised the show. one of the things they praised was the BROMANCE. I WILL BE LOOKING FORWARD to that! the show works for me because repetition is important for learning languages and i don’t mind repeating scenes. this show is just fun.. i don’t care about blahblah that might be unrealistic or whatever… IN FACT the first episode i watched was lke episode 14 … but i don’t care about korean dramas so i can watch it backwards for all i care and i’ll get the same amount of enjoyment lol. So what i did was watch episode 14 then started on episode 1. Apparently this shown isn’t that well-known because dream high2 is/was airing at the same time though from the clips of dream high 2 i’ve seen on yt and the bad stuff i heard about dream high 1… this show is probably better?

only found scripts for the first 3 eps. & 4. I learned a couple words before i found the script anyway but the script makes it easier. Maybe i’ll write a review if and when i finish watching it. OH AND there’s a white guy in it! yay! lol. I’m used to seeing foreigners on japanese tv but not much on korean tv notthat i watch that much korean tv.

SPEAKING Of k-dramas i’m still stuck on episode 11 of secret garden just because  have a shitload of other crap i want to watch/watching and then…. for going through the script to see if there’s anything iwant to leran… i’m at episode 6. so it’s almost been a year since i tried to watch this drama and my understanding of it has of course gone up since that’s inevitably going to happen over this long period of time. i wonder how many years it’ll take for me to finish watching this drama. i just got sick of the drama really quick… a insulting b or a arguing with b… or a and b insulting each other in this long-winded way which is apparently witty and well-written or something but the fact it’s long-winded makes me bored since it is only the 20th or 10th time this kind of scene is happening. like i said, i do fastforward anything with old people etc etc but… i don’t know… it’s not enough to make me watch it as of right now. You can try to make the argument oh well if you’re fluent in korean then you know what they’re saying and you’d find it funny and entertaining and all that… but if i was fluent in korean i would’ve heard so much more bitching and whining up (immersion = fluency rights) to now compared to if i wasn’t … i think i would like the show even less/be less tolerant in all honesty lol… in fact if i was that fluent i would be bored with the writing… probably?   I really think k-dramas can possibly be on-par with american dramas if they made them 10 or 15 minute shorter and cut out the melodrama and and and made the season less than 22 eps, characteres bitched/whined like 90% less, make shit 90% less long-winded, etc etc.

you know long-winded thing reminds me of the downfall of that show house MD. they try to be witty and to be witty SOOOO shit always has to be dragged out and become long-winded when they have conversations where they go back and forth.  but rather than the viewers being amused by this wittieness they just feel irritated and honestly it’s just tiring trying to follow that… and it’s not worth following.. because it’s not that witty. it’s just unnecessarily tiring.

I just don’t like k-dramas. I can’t make myself care. but anyways this k-drama is intriguing to me so hopefulllllllly it’ll be a good 16 ep ride..

Listen to Japanese Efficiently. AJATT

As far as drama/anime/anything with soft subtitles.

1) Sub2SRS

http://forum.koohii.com/viewtopic.php?id=2643

2) Join the mp3 files with:

http://www.snapfiles.com/get/mp3albummaker.html

3) truncate silence

Usually with this the end-product is at least half the length. It depends on the show obviously and how much you filter.  in the time it takes to listen to the whole episode once you can listen to it twice, maybe three times even, or maybe even 4 times.

===========

I guess it works out best with drama because most of the time you download the raw andsubtitles separately@ d-addicts.  If you’re learning Japanese from drama like via’

http://dramanote.seesaa.net/

it speeds up the process.

HERE ARE SOME AUDIO FILES THAT I MADE with this process.

I’m just uploading it so i can delete it off the computer cause i don’t need them anymore. I tried to like filter the subs to take out lines that show up like really often like “i’m sorry” “thank you” since i did the sub2srs with english subs to grab just the audio.

Here’s the FOLDER on MEDIAFIRE:

Contains bakemonogatari episode 1 & 2  (15/16 minutes each)
Suzumiya Haruhi no yuutsu: Episode 21 to 24
JIN episodes 1-7
London Hearts – I think this ep is from 2010… it’s the one where they rank the geinin by their wives (YOME…dakaretai). there was memorable part where chihara junior said to inoue 美容師が途中で死んだ?
GONZO episode 4
Liar Game II episode 1-7
Samurai High school episode 02 04  3
MOP GIRL episode 6-9
Saito-san episode 10 (the last ep?)
Baptista team season 1 episode 01

ANDMORE!
edit: ADDED one for  korean drama secret garden

For sub2srs decks go herE:

http://learnanylanguage.wikia.com/wiki/Sub2srs_decks