Wednesday, 11 July 2012

Learning Japanese ... again...

THE URGE to be able to read, speak and write fluent Japanese has hit me again. I've always wanted to speak Japanese, since my mid-teens. Despite poor progress (in life as much as any foreign language) I never gave up on this goal, and it's one thing I want to achieve before I die...

So I phoned the Waterstones booksellers branch that serves the School of Oriental and African Studies in town and checked whether Teach Yourself: Complete Japanese was available. He said no, they only had Fast Track Japanese. If I wanted to make an order, I'd have to come in, hand over the cash, then wait however long it takes (three days to three weeks depending on availability and obscurity). So I told him I'd check that my local WH Smiths couldn't order it in for me.

An ordinary bookseller can order in any title in print in any language. WH Smiths, however, only order from a shortlist of titles they actually stock. So I seriously doubted they'd be able to help me. Imagine my shock when I entered the store not only to find Complete Japanese (1 book; 2 CDs) on the shelf, but that it was discounted £10 cheaper than the £39.99 recommended retail price. In American money I paid $45 for my linguistic distraction from the lure of the Devil's Drug Heroin!

Oh yeah, and a ghost tried to enter my head through my right eye last night. That's what happens when you're overexposed to computers. You hear voices and the ghouls try to get you. I'm very upset with my Seroquel for not protecting me from psychic apparitions. Also I'm still prone to extreme bad moods. Quetiapine is meant to even out the moods. But it doesn't. All it does is stop me going manic. It doesn't appear to defend against depression at all. Doesn't stop psychic voices coming into my head. Which don't bother me, except that I know that they're considered a sign of madness by the big bad world I live in. The only good thing about quetiapine is the lovely drowsy feeling it induces 1-2 hours after popping the pills. Then you get really nice sleep. But over time immunity develops to most of most drugs' effects. My friend Pinky is on four times my dose and it barely touches the sides with her. She's on clonazepam (Klonipin) for anxiety and zopiclone for sleep ~ on top of maximum dose Seroquel for paranoid psychosis. Seroquel, the drug that knocked me sideways the first weeks I was on it.

Well that's boring old me for another day. If anyone else has seen a ghost recently,


PS: Seroquel and quetiapine are the same thing!

There's more to Trisch Li than manic episodes. This is my favourite video of hers...

~~~~~~~~~  BEACH BIRDS ~~~~~~~


Bev said...

I like ghosts if there friendly.When i was a kid I seen a ghost in the middle of the night.I only saw his hand it came up and 2 of his fingers where dancing and then rested on me.I liked it a lot but he never came back.

Bev said...

Japanese must be so tricky to learn.Let me know how you say sexy okay?

Gledwood said...

Well, Bev, the Japanese just luuurve borrowing English words so you you could well say "sekusii", the U is only half-pronounced so it sounds just like "sexy" with a Japanese accent...

the official word for sexy, according to google is:


pronounced: "sekushī na"

that's pretty much what I told you. A borrowing from the English prouncounced "sekshi" rather than "sexy"

Gledwood said...

... and as for ghosts, when I was with my exex in her Mum's house, we heard the creaking of a person creaking up the stairs. There was a cat in the house but NO WAY was this a cat. It was most definitely 2 legs not 4 and a human being. It creaked and crept up the stairs and then the bedroom door swung open with a screech... and then... NOTHING.

Apparently her ex boyfriend had seen it. It was an "old lady". And she was friendly. Hence us not being scared...

I'm not sure I actually believe in ghosts of the dear departed, btw. I think a lot of them are just demonic spirits of the Undead...

Anna Young said...

When I was in sixth grade we were made to take a Japanese class. This was back when Japan was going to be the next world super power, now its China.

Anyway, the letters/charaters of the Japanese language are so intricate. Its almost as if you have to be good at drawing to write in Japanese. Plus they read l

In Hawaii there were many Japanse people, and in the public library there was a Japanse section. I would look at thier books, and be amazed. I don't know if one charater is a word, or if its read like I wrote above, and each charater is letter making up a word. I seem to remeber from sixth grade that each character is a letter and each letter has its own sound, and just like English a grouping of letters makes up one word.

It would be quite stimulating to learn Japanese. Keeping your brain on its toes so to speak. I've herd that Rosseta Stone packages are the fastest ways to learn to read, write, and speak a new language.

If I were to learn a second language it would be French. I know how to say, "my name is Anna" in French, and I love the way the words flow off the tongue.
jua ah leh pel. That's how it sounds, not how its spelled. Maybe there is no leh. I'm stupid.

Good for you, picking up yet another language. I remeber when you were on your German kick. Didn't you even have a blog in German? I really like that about you. Your thirst for knowlege.

xx ay

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Hi, Gleds. Good luck and do keep us posted re the Japanese learning. I think it's a great idea.

bugerlugs63 said...

Anything that distracts from scoring and using has to be worth every penny, and more.
I'm not sure the sound of Japanese appeals to me.
I'm fluent in French (written and spoken) and can get by in Italian and Spanish . . . but I like those languages, especially Italian.
I checked out that Google Blog Translate once and looked at my Blog in French; it's ok on a straightforward sentence, but a lot of it was nonsense.
Good for you Gledwood,take care x

Gledwood said...

ANNA GRACE: I've wanted to speak Japanese since I was about 15... 25 years later I'm still learning... still at the most basic level. But I'm determined to do it even if it kills me!

WELSHCAKES: Like I say I'm utterly DETERMINED to get somewhere this time!

BUGERLUGS: it does make a very good distraction. Nothing will equal heroin... I'm just hoping Japanese might BETTER IT!!!

Furtheron said...

Good luck with the Japanese - good idea

No sightings of ghosts, I do think I hear them sometimes

Furtheron said...

BTW - until last week I worked a stones throw from said bookshop and they are very good - they got me a very obscure Physics book (for my son) inside 48 hours a couple of weeks back... whilst it is now a few mins walk (I off the other end of the campus now) still worth it pretty much as good as Foyles

Gledwood said...

Furtheron: who WH Smiths? Or Waterstones? O I see you mean that Waterstones branch. Yes they are the only bookshop that sells exactly the sort of stuff I go for. Stuff about Asian langauges!

Maybe we should do an online ghost hunt and see what happens. I'm sure tiredness makes you more psychic. Either that or too much computer time had turned my brains to mush and hence the ghost sighting~~~~ wooh!!

Anonymous said...


thanks for stopping by Wagblog
and liking my recent post. I
am teaching myself Italian; I think Japanese would be likely a great deal more difficult, for me at 59, and with brain damage accrued over the years from psych meds, ECT and CNS lesions due to Lyme disease. Italian is plenty hard for me...

Ghosts? Well, my beloved cat of 16 years died recently yet nevertheless she is back with me, her presence both palpable and real. I do not see her with my eyes, but I can feel her and hear her and I know "for certain sure" that she is quite literally in the room with me when she is. I don't think of her as a ghost though, because to me she is simply my longtime feline companion, come back to visit and to assure me that she is not really gone.

Tasmanian devils are on the brink of extinction, due to a devastating infectious cancer (if I recall correctly). Thanks for posting such great photos...Maybe if others learn to care about the issue it will not be too late to help them and other such rare species.