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Wednesday, 23 August 2017

342 Alan Watts

Language comes along before grammar. A child picks up language by ear, and on going to school is amazed and horrified to discover this language has grammar. Lots of people in the world did not know they had grammar until some anthropologist told them, having discovered the rules of their so-called primitive languages.
Even the greatest neurologists don’t know how the brain works and they are the first to admit it. They don’t know how we manage to be conscious, how we make decisions; we just do it, in the same way we move our fingers without knowing any physiology.

Tuesday, 22 August 2017

341

Today, a couple of things.

At work, we presented our classes’ initial feedback this semester. My class want to improve their reading. They say they’re not good at it. They want to be trained how to do it. So today I reinforce that the only way to improve is to practice.


I’m not happy with Any Language I Like. The concept isn’t likely to grab people. In a moment of inspiration I got the idea to write How NOT to Learn a Foreign Language instead. It feel more snappy, tight and funny. It ought to catch people’s attention more readily.

Monday, 21 August 2017

340

Quite easily and naturally I attended to several languages (Japanese, German and Dutch) in the course of the day. Things simply fell into place. I had my Kindle at hand. I acted out of habit. These are good indications.

So what I plan to do is to utilize these strategies in another area of my life that needs them—sorely so. I’m talking about that, for the want of a better word, I’ll refer to as my tendency to procrastinate.


That has been my major issue for as long as I can remember. Let’s teach this old dog new tricks. 

Sunday, 20 August 2017

339

I’ve just finished my first home run book in German! Well, actually it’s more of a short story—about 20 pages long. It’s Dorothy Johnson’s tale: A Man Called Horse. In German, Ein Mann namens Pferd.

(Enough to base a movie on.)

Anyway, I’m chuffed! I feel great.

I did it the ‘Heinrich Maneuver’ style—that is, I read it sentence by sentence. First in English, then in German. That worked very well.


Next, I’ll read another story—there are 8 stories in the book—the shortest one: Dog Eater (Hundefresser). And I may copy out some i+1 sentences too.