July 1, 2010 | Greek


I began this project a year ago today.

Today marks the one-year anniversary of this project. In honor of it, I managed another appallingly bad Rosetta Stone score.

How Many Languages Were Spoken in Times Square Today?

How Many Languages Were Spoken in Times Square Today?


It was again on a writing unit. I was told I had gotten six correct and 12 incorrect. That works out to 33%. Of what, I’m not sure, since there are a million ways to get a sentence wrong, and I most certainly did not get 67% of all the things I could have gotten wrong wrong.

Although it has been a year, I did not feel all that reflective or nostalgic today. I have that capacity, but it just didn’t manifest itself on this occasion. I feel completely happy being completely in the middle of the project, and ready to keep being in the middle of it.

As it turns out, I never missed a day of studying this entire year. I didn’t know it would work out that way, but it did. I regard that as a good sign. In quite a few ways, I am not all that disciplined, so I must really be enjoying myself. I tend not to do things I don’t want to do.

There were days where I didn’t study for more than half an hour, but they were rare. The overwhelming majority of the time I did at least two hours of studying per day, and often I did a lot more, sometimes even as many as eight hours or more from the time I woke up to the time I went to bed.

I had an especially large amount of endurance for Italian. Arabic and Korean were harder to do all day and night, but I had my moments even with those. I am looking forward to German, Hindi, Japanese, French, Hebrew, Portuguese, and Mandarin.

Comments (4)

Katherine • Posted on Wed, July 07, 2010 - 1:49 pm EST

Congrats!!! This is really admirable!! I can definitely say I have never heard of anyone studying languages every day with out break for an entire year.  Even I go days, sometimes weeks, without even picking up a flashcard.  Happy anniversary!!!

Ellen Jovin • Posted on Thu, July 08, 2010 - 12:33 am EST

Thank you, Katherine. :)

Bart • Posted on Mon, July 19, 2010 - 9:48 am EST

Slightly belated congratulations.  Speaking as someone who found speaking foreign languages very difficult, and who retreated into the dusty silence of Latin to fulfill a college language requirement, I’m particularly dazzled by your constant effort to use new languages on the streets with actual flesh and blood native speakers. 

Happy anniversary!

Ellen Jovin • Posted on Wed, July 21, 2010 - 12:21 pm EST

Thanks, Bart! For what it’s worth, I wish I had some of that dusty Latin in my brain.

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