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  1. I was born in Grenada. I went to private schools, where I was taught mainly by American and English tutors. I traveled to a different Island every year as a kid. I looked at television programs from different parts of the world. At the end of the day, I do not have an accent. However, my lack of an identifiable accent usually causes me to stand out.
  2. You hit the nail on the head. I am also a bit of a perfectionist. I prefer reading and writing, because I am able to use the good old dictionary. However, with the exception of recorded material, it is virtually impossible to have everything repeated without annoying the speaker. Then I start to wonder if I interpreted correctly or if my response would be appropriate... I usually stop short of a full panic attack.
  3. The earlier you can introduce a child to other languages the better. Some people fear that this would confuse the children, but in reality it aids in the development of the brain. I do not have any kids a yet, but as a former teacher, I have been collecting multimedia learning aids over the years. As soon as my children are in the womb, they will be introduced to the different languages.
  4. I was always a bit of a loner when it came to learning languages. It was not entirely by choice. In my class there were mixed opinions concerning the languages; most of the students saw it as a waste of time. As a result, I had to work very hard to do as much as I could, by myself. Over the years I have gotten accustomed to this notion.
  5. After having taught foreign languages for years, I am sad to say that I no longer hold the value to grammar as I once did. When teaching I must emphasize correct grammar, since it is necessary for the students to receive a passing grade. However, when in comes to actual communication it can be a bit of a mental barrier. I have noticed that in most oral situations, correct grammar is seldom used. Language is more about communication than it is about rules. It is true that the rules can allow you to communicate, but it can also be costly. Grammar has its place and it is important that it is learned, but I believe that we should place more emphasis on communication than rules.
  6. These short-cuts are really annoying. This is even worse when you live in a country where there are various dialects. So it is becomes a bit of a task; first trying to figure out what the person it trying to say, then what it means. The following is a typical example of dialect meet shortcut. "Ah doh no wat he doin dey. He dey in dey hole day." - "I don't know what he is doing. He has been inside for the entire day." See what I mean?
  7. I definitely do not over use "lol". I only use it when I think something is funny. I can't be blamed if I think a lot of things are funny. lol! Well you get the picture. On a serious note, I find myself using "smilies" a bit too often. :grin:
  8. This used to happen to me a lot while I was learning my other languages. I was unaware of it. I knew what I wanted to say and said it. The only problem was that I said it in another language. When I noticed the confused looks, I then tried to correct myself, but at times it felt like going through a mental dictionary to get a word that I should have know.
  9. I have to agree that comedy does not translate well. This is mainly due to cultural differences. From a linguistic standpoint we have idiomatic expressions and culture specific references to deal with. Without the background knowledge, the joke may seem like mere words. Then there is the issue of what is culturally acceptable. While certain cultures might be open to certain topics, in others it might be seen as taboo or outright offensive.
  10. The next language I would like to learn is Mandarin Chinese. This is more out of necessity than a love for the language. In recent years, my island has seen a drastic rise in the Chinese population. At first they came to work on specific projects, but lately many Chinese businesses have been set up in the town itself. I believe that it is necessary to learn the language of your new neighbors in order to foster better cultural exchanges.
  11. If you were to ask me this a 2 years ago, I would have said French, but since I met my "Special Friend", I must say Spanish. The way in which those words rattle off her tongue makes my heart pound like a drum. It is also very cute/sexy when she speaks English with that Spanish accent. Aye mama mia!
  12. Othello is my favorite. Until recently, I had not given Shakespeare much thought. I was asked to assist a friend of mine with the Othello, Act 1 Scene1. This story is wrapped in so much deception, envy and passion that I could not put it down. The original version of the text was a bit tough to understand, but thankfully there are SparkeNotes.
  13. In school we had several classes to correct this very problem. I think the issue originates from associating the apostrophe with possession. In some cases, people just don't care; as long as they are understood, they can't be bothered. To simplify matters just do as everyone else and use "ur".
  14. I am from Grenada, where cursive is indeed fast becoming a thing of the past. I learned to write cursive in primary school, that was about 20 years ago. I took pleasure in writing letters to my family and friends, showing them my "beautiful hand writing". However, when I started to teach, I was informed by my students that they did not know what that was. At first, I thought they were simply trying to give me a hard time, but the reality was even worse. Not only were they not acquainted with cursive, but most of them had terrible penmanship skills. I brought this issue to the principal, who stated that "we have to work with what they gave us". I believe that the mastery of simple skills, such as cursive writing, gave student a sense of achievement and motivated them to try to master other more difficult tasks. Due to the recent introduction of computers in most schools, I doubt I will ever see any emphasis placed on Cursive writing again.
  15. Unlike many people, my first word was not "mommy" or "daddy", it was "Ray". According to my mother, when I was a baby, my uncle, her youngest brother, used to provoke me almost every minute. In protest, I tried my best to indicate that he was taunting me, by shouting his name. Today, he still considers me his favorite nephew and he continues to provoke me.
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