Not well, no. I can speak a smattering of Spanish, a few words of Polish, and a bit of Japanese. And a very small amount of Klingon.
2. If you answered yes above, would you describe yourself as fluent? Which was your first language?
I don’t consider myself fluent in anything but English at the moment, but I’d like to be fluent in a few other languages.
3. Did you study a foreign language in school (including college or University)? How much do you remember? Has it been useful to you? Can you speak it, or only read it?
I did – I took Latin for most of high school and a bit in college. I remember quite a bit of it – even though it’s a pretty dead language, it’s remarkably useful for English. I can speak it sparingly, but I can read it fairly well.
I took Spanish back in junior high, and I remember some – my teacher used to say that the most important phrases were “dame una cerveza por favor”, and “donde esta el trono?”. I speak a bit, although my comprehension isn’t the best, and I can read it some.
I’m currently taking Japanese, and going into my third semester. I’ve been studying what we learned the first year, and think I’m remembering it fairly well. It hasn’t been useful yet, but it will be if I ever make it over to Japan. I’m working on speaking it – certain subjects are much easier than others. Reading it is a bit tough, but there are several websites where I try and read the news, and some where I pull up the menus – it would be easier if I knew more of the kanji, but when they use kana I can sound it out and figure out the meaning with varying degrees of success.
4. If you were going to learn another language, which one would you want to study?
Japanese was the one I picked last year just for run, but I also want to study Chinese, Russian, and German.
5. Do you have relatives who speak a language different from your own?
One set of grandparents spoke Polish, and my other grandparents spoke Lithuanian.
6. Have you been to a country where you don’t know the language? How well did you cope?
I haven’t – I’m not sure how well I’d do, even visiting countries where I do know a bit of the language. I will say that learning a new language gives you a better appreciation of those visiting our country who are trying out their English.
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