July 19, 2010 | Greek
Etymology, Foam Rollers, and Bad Grades
I contemplate Greek word origins, do battle with an evil stretching device, and get the worst grade ever.
I like the Greek word for “university.” It is πανεπιστήμιο, pronounced pan-eh-pee-STEE-mee-oh.
Finally, this is an example of a word I can remember based on etymology. The pan piece meaning “all,” and the eh-pee-STEE-mee-oh piece calling out its relationship to “knowledge.” I think that is very cool, even though an awful lot of universities don’t live up to this standard.
When I first heard the word for “university,” I kept forgetting it, and then I noticed its component parts, and now when I can’t remember it, I just think about those parts and the word flies into my brain. This is the kind of thing people always told me studying Latin and (ancient) Greek would be good for, but I never tested that theory by studying them.
Not that I wouldn’t like to study them, but every minute you are studying a dead language, you are not studying a live one.
Foam Roller with Companion Torture (i.e., Stretching) Device
Currently I am very sore, relating to the same old boring running issue, so I spent a lot of time on the floor this morning doing Pimsleur while ironing out my various body parts with this foam roller.
It doesn’t look scary, but it really hurts. (Really.) It is not easy to come up with translations of Pimsleur sentences such as “My wife sends many postcards to our friends” and “You drive too fast” while that thing is pressing on my iliotibial band.
Nonetheless, I didn’t do too badly. I am now at around lesson 20 (second level), which means there are only about 10 Greek Pimsleur lessons remaining.
On to Rosetta Stone for a moment: being separated from it for several days earlier this month definitely caused a loss in Rosetta Stone momentum. Today I got my lowest score ever on a writing unit: 6%. No, that is not a typo. The program informed me I had gotten 14 out of 15 incorrect. I am still not clear on what that actually means, but I reject this assessment of my skills.
Immediately after that, I got a 96% on a Rosetta Stone speaking module. Harumph. Cold comfort. That is like having someone take away your new two-wheeler with the flower-covered basket on the handlebars and give you a used tricycle in its place.
I ran 6.5 miles tonight—the furthest I’ve run since May! Happiness.