when life is in upheaval, I’m disinclined to post anything.  And actually, this trends through the rest of my work as well.  I work best, and most creatively, when my personal life has a comfortable status quo. hence the dearth of updates in the past couple months.

We have this tendency to think of, and admire the artist-type who thrives on disruption, manic bursts of productively, and such.  there may be that type out there, but it’s not me.

I realize more and more, especially running an art gallery, how little I personally have in common with artist-types, despite having similar skillsets.  I schedule my work.  I rarely work more than 8 hours per day.  I work in balance-  tending to do a little of all my regular type tasks in a day. I resent it when something occurs that interrupts the workflow I’ve planned out for myself.

I’ve always been this way.  Never pulled all nighters in college (for school, at least. I stayed up all night plenty.)   Had a strong sense that if a project was due in a month, I’d better work on it a little every week.  And did that.

Of course, with my current work, much of which is a form of production, it’s not possible work in a bout of inspiration against deadline.  Or, it’s a bad idea and quality would be sacrificed.  I know, to within 10 minutes or so, how long any garment will take to construct-  and if I’m constructing it to complete an order, this means quality is the most important element.  And there’s a limit to how much quality sewing I can do in a week.

So it’s all scheduled.

This is not incomparable to learning other things, I think. Repetition for an hour a day per week is more effective than seven hours in one day. One of the awesome benefits of having handwork as a job is the opportunity to listen to stuff-  i.e. languages.

Right now I’ve been doing:

1. arabic-  via podcasts, library pimsleur, internet, and class.  ……….1-3 hours per day.

2. french – movies and library pimsleur, +  a  little deutsch welle in french.  I took french in grades 5-9-  so this is sort of a relearning project. I’ve a tendency to be pleasantly surprised by my comprehension, and then every time I try to speak it comes out in german. ………….. 30 minutes per day.

3. german-  inactive state.  I just listen to an hour or so of deutsch welle per day, until the news starts to repeat.  My news comprehension has gone up, though no doubt my speaking has declined, since I haven’t been.     ……………..1 hour per day, plus if I write in a journal, I use german.

4.  thai…I’m working a little on the SRS database I made, and updating all the entries with tones (yes, the tone is incorporated into the thai script, but I’m not good at deciphering the tonal aspect).  I really sort of skipped over the tones learning, except what I could get through osmosis. During the 6 months actively studying thai, built an SRS database with 3600 entries-  so my vocab was decent (not anymore)  but my speaking was terrible.  again, the problem with trying to learn a language separate from other speakers. ………..30 min to 1 hour per day.

So far, the only language confusion comes between french and german.  thai and arabic are so significantly different from the european languages and each other that they seem to be stored differently.   Thai has tones, no gender, no conjugations, and is mostly mono-syllabic.  Arabic conjugates on both the beginning and end of verbs, is all gendered, has dual and more-than-dual plural, and has a whole bunch of sounds that english speakers tend to ignore.

I’m quite curious about this whole bit regarding how second languages are stored & retrieved prior to fluency, and then even post fluency, or even post bilingual.

Posted by:Brook DeLorme

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