Jump to content


  • Posts

  • Joined

  • Last visited



  • Currently studying
  • Native tongue
  • Fluent in

Recent Profile Visitors

The recent visitors block is disabled and is not being shown to other users.

russian_pianist's Achievements


Newbie (1/14)



  1. What a wonderful recipe, KatrinK! I am sure, it tastes delicious! Makes me feel like going to the kitchen and making some pancakes! Oh, by the way, everyone, try pancakes with "condensed milk with sugar" = сгущенка, или сгущенное молоко. Just the way a lot of russians enjoy them. I assure you, you'll never forget the experience. Just refrain from counting calories while enjoying блины со сгущенкой! Pancakes are also delicious with caviar. There are lots of places in St. Petersburg where you can have them served that way. Till next time!
  2. Hello Everyone, Hope, all is well and you are working hard (and having fun at the same time) learning your favourite foreign language. I went to the opera today to watch the new production of Prince Igor composed by Borodin over 100 years ago. Beautiful music! Stunning performances! Well, I may be an easily excited one, so you may want to wait and see what the critics say. I thought I would refresh your memory on some theatre-related words today. After all, russians love theatre and they often invite their guests from foreign parts to join them to see a particularly interesting production. So, here are some words to help you not to get lost in the theatre: Фойе = foyer Гардероб = cloackroom, checkroom Партер = orchestra Амфитеатр = amphitheatre Ложа = box Бельэтаж = mezzanine Бенуар = baignoir box Оркестровая яма = orchestra pit Занавес = curtain Кулисы = backstage Cпектакль = performance, play Буфет = buffet, cafeteria - where you can get all sorts of delicious refreshments Hope, you get to go to the theatre in Russia and enjoy your time there! Till next time
  3. Hello Everyone! Всем привет! Как жизнь? How is it going? Hope, all is well. I was thinking about a fun way of learning Russian for you and decided to ask, if you've ever heard of Russian anecdotes. Have you? Russians love good humour, even though it is hard to tell looking at their less than friendly faces sometimes. Why aren't they smiling? Well, tell your Russian friend an anecdote, and he'll be your friend forever. But be prepared to listen to his favourite anecdotes and funny stories for a good half hour, at least. Russians love to digress. YOu can expect to hear an anecdote from a Russian in the middle of a serious conversation, a wedding speech, a lecture, at a business meeting. Actually, an anecdote you tell at a right time will be appreciated by your listeners, and you'll significantly improve your reputation. So, here is one of the latest anecdotes in Russian. Let's see if you can understand what it is all about. Will you find it funny? Ну, ничего... Зато российская сборная по хоккею в России побывала... = Well...At least Russian hockey players came to play in Russia.... There is lot to be dug out from this short phrase. Here is another one: Интеллект - отвратительная вещь! Человек без мозгов абсолютно уверен в высоком уровне своего развития. Умный же прекрасно осознаёт, какой он, в сущности, придурок. Вот такой парадокс... = Intellect is a disgusting thing! The one who can hardly boast any intelligence is absolutely sure that his level of intellectual development is extremely high. A clever person clearly understands how stupid he is, in reality. What a paradox... Here is a web site where new anecdotes are published daily: www.anekdot.ru Read these short and witty stories and you'll be able to significantly improve your Russian vocabulary, as well as have a peak into the Russian mentality. Here you can listen to some Russian anecdotes: Enjoy!
  4. Very useful post, KatrinK! Just may be to make it a little easier for those just learning the language it may be worth it to say that people do not always add "Pozhalujsta" and "izvinite" to their questions. Try saying: Который час? - Kotorij chas? = What time is it now? and be ready to hear all these "bez chetverti" = "quarter to" and "bez des'ati" = " 10 minutes to" and other weird time telling phrazez in Russian. Luckily, nowadays we all have watches of this or that kind on us: mobile phones, iPods, iPads, anything tells time now. There used to be a "time telling service" in Russia some 20 years ago. I am not sure, if it is still there, but it used to be possible to find out the correct time by dialing "100" in Moscow. A metallic voice would tell you the time:" Moskovskoje vrem'a sem' chasov vosem' minyt"... Here is an interesting video on telling the time in Russian: Russian lesson 6 How to tell time in Russian Enjoy!
  5. Hello Everyone, Привет! Well, we know how to say Hello! in Russian, don't we by now? Greetings are among the first words people learn when they decide to master a foreign language, isn't that true? However, saying Good-Bye properly is no less important than saying Hello! After all, you are most likely to be remembered by the last things you say. Saying your good-byes properly is an important step in creating your image, when speaking to foreigners, trying to make friends, or just having a good time. So, just as it is with the "Hello!" you can say it more and less formally (remember "Здравствуйте и Привет! " and the difference between the two?) you can say your good-byes in a formal way: До свидания! = can be literally translated as "See you next time!" or Прощайте! = which has a slight implication of "Good-bye, I may never see you again". Also, this word is derived from the verb "Простить, прощать" - meaning to excuse someone, to pardon. You are not begging for forgiveness, though, when saying "Прощайте!" - in plural, or "Прощай!" in singular. You are just saying your good-buy, may be not expecting to see the person for quite some time. In a less formal conversation other words come into play: Пока! = Bye! Всего хорошего! = All the best!, which at times is reduced to one word only - "Всего!" Счастливо! - close to "may the happiness be with you!" Всего наилучшего! - another variation of "All the best", could be used when finishing letters До скорого! - See you soon! Here is a video, where you can hear the formal and informal ways of saying "Good-Bye" in modern Russian. Enjoy! Пока! Счастливо!
  6. Hi, Nice list of words! One of my favourite one is: Без царя в голове - pronounced "bez tzarja v golove" - can be literally translated as "without a tzar in one's head" As if we need one in there! kidding. This is said about someone demonstrating reckless behavour, "acting first - thinking later" type of person. There surely are other similar words/short phrazes. Do you know any? I'll try to make my own list of them next time. See you!
  7. Hello Everyone! Всем привет! Have you been watching the Olympics in the past few days? I have. Could not stay away. Some say it is addicting. Did you watch the opening ceremony? It was really impressing. A hand of a Cirque de Solei director was quite obvious at times, but everything was presented with style. I would like to draw your attention to the very first minutes of the video, which opened the ceremony - the Alphabet, where every Russian letter is associated with something meaningful in the Russian history or present time. Let's see, if this will be an easy way for you to remember the letters and may be learn something new about Russia through this list of letters. Here we go! Поехали!, as Yuri Gagarin said just before leaving the planet for cosmos. A - Азбука /Alphabet Б - Байкал/Baikal - the largest pure water lake В - Вертолет/Helicopter Г - Гагарин/Gagarin - everyone knows him Д - Достоевский/Dostojevsky - Have you read any of his novels? Е - Екатерина II/Catherine the Great, the Empress who is still quite fondly remembered Ё - Ёжик в тумане /Hedgehog in the fog - a charming russian cartoon, have you watched it? Ж - Жуковский/Zhukovskij - not sure what exactly this engineer has invented, but something important З - Зерноуборочная машина/Combine-harvester И - Империя/Empire, Russian Empire, whatever you say - it was and may be still is an empire Й - ЧайковскиЙ - /Tchajkovskij, famous composer К - Кандинский/Kandinskij - famous artist, I've recently seen his works in ...well, they are really in the museum all over the world, very colourful and bold works, if I may say so, timeless... Л - Луноход /Lunokhod - Moonrover, when was it sent to the Moon? a very long time ago. May be the Chinese rover will meet it there....kidding\ М - Малевич/Malevich - another famous artist Н - Набоков/Nabokov - novelist, wrote both in Russian and in English. Did you know, that his Russian and English versions of Lolita are slightly different? They are not word-by-word translations. О - Орбитальная станция/Space station - It is an International Space Stations, but cosmic explorations have been of great interest to Russians for a long time П - Периодическая таблица/Periodic Table - Mendeleev's Periodic Table of Elements. Did you know, that Mendeleev also invented the best way to purify Russian vodka? Р - Русский балет /Russian ballet - no need to talk about this one - it is a staple, eternal beauty, no idea how they do it, but you can always tell a Russian balerina from her foreign sisters. Simply magical. С - Спутник/Sputnik - that very first piece of metal, which could only beeep, but when circling our blue planet. Т- Телевидение/Television У - Ушанка/Ushanka - a warm fur hat, which covers your ears to keep you really warm in the midst of the Russian winter Ф - Фишт/Fisht - a mountain peak in the Caucasus Mountains, not too far from Sochi Х - Хохлома/Khokhloma - khokhloma painting, a Russian wood painting style Ц - Циолковский/Tziolkovskij - have you heard of him? Ч - Чехов/Chehov - well, I am sure you've heard of this writer Ш - Шагал/Mark Chagal - aren't his paintings amazing? They are so full of life and mystery...mystery of life! Щ - Щусев/Shusev - another artist Ъ - Пушкинъ/Pushkin - what a choice for a mute letter! It was a part of a great writer's/poet's last name, and you cannot really imagine Russian without Pushkin. Did you know that he's never been out of the country? Never travelled abroad... Ы - МЫ/We - a good choice for the letter Ь - ЛюбовЬ /Love - Э - Эйзенштейн/Eisenshtein - a famous russian film director, one of the pioneers of the industry Ю - ПарашЮт/Parachute - we all know what it is, do we know where it was invented? Я - РоссиЯ - Russia - a lot of little я's make a big country. Well, this is a very impressive alphabet, don't you think so? Here is the video of it, images are marvelous. Have a look! Азбука России And here is a cartoon "Hedgehog in the fog" mentioned before. It is worth watching! See you next time!
  8. Hi Everyone, Всем привет! Have you ever travelled by train? Probably - Yes. Have you ever travelled by train in Russia? That may prove to be a true adventure for s foreigner. Here are some phrases you may want to use when travelling by train in Russia. 1. You would tell a taxi driver to take you to the railway station: Мне нужно на (железнодорожный) вокзал. - I need to get to the (railway) station. 2. Once at the station, you may want to find out where to look for your train: C какой платформы отходит поезд на ...? - Which platform does the train to ... leave from? 3. There is an option of registering your luggage, if you have a lot of bulky things with you. Где можно сдать багаж? - Where is the luggage registration office? Here is a little video on travelling by train in Russia: Good luck!
  9. Hi Hedonologist, Hope, all is well. Privetiki and Privetik are even less formal forms of "Privet!" You would hear these forms used mostly among young people, school children and students, but hardly ever said by adults and certainly never used to greet your boss. You are right, "Hi!" can be used in a variety of formal settings in English, whereas Russian "Privet!" cannot be. You would never hear it at a conference, or a meeting at the office, colleagues may greet each other with this word, but they would always say "Zdravstvyjte" to the boss, or someone they do not know too well. To say hello in russian is definitely a little bit different than in English and the 'settings' where you can use it, are different too. That's right. Hope, it helps! Glad you enjoyed the video. Have a nice day!
  10. Hello Everyone, Всем привет! Hope all is well. I have a question for you: Do you know what the word "ничего" means in Russian? The answer that springs into mind is a simple "nothing". And it is correct, as the word is most often used in the following way: Ты что-нибудь видишь? - Нет, ничего. Can you see anything? - No, I see nothing. However, the word is also used in answer to the "How is it going?" question. You would hear a similar "nothing much" in English. Quite often the word is used to calm someone (or even oneself) down. Это ничего, ничего. Все пройдет. - It's OK. It'll pass. We feel, that in reality there is "a lot" going on for that person, the most tragic circumstances may be unfolding in the background, but we'll keep hearing "Ничего, ничего, все пройдет." - It's OK, everything will pass. I remember reading a story written by a German linguist (or may be he was just interested in learning languages) who was responsible for taking the Russian prisoners to Germany during the WWII. He got very curious about the word "ничего" he kept hearing all the time from both the people he corralled to be later transported to Germany and their relatives who were left behind. This has turned to be a rather sad post... Cheer up! "Ничего! Прорвемся!" - It's OK! We'll get through it! as the Russians still say. Bye and Good Luck!
  11. Привет! It would be nice to hear real stories from real people here. What makes you learn a foreign language? Do you plan/have an opportunity to use it often? Do you read? watch movies? Feel free to tell! Here is a motivation video from someone who has found his personal motivation to learn Russian and is eager to share his findings: Good luck!
  12. Всем привет! Hello Everyone! Hope, all is well and you are watching the Sochi Olympics What a grand opening ceremony it was yesterday! I thoroughly enjoyed watching it. Hope, you did too. One of the interesting peculiarities of the Russian language and customs is the tradition of greeting each other. Здравствуйте! - Zdrastvujte! - people say to each other. Technically, this word means "Желаю Вам здоровья!" - zhelaju Vam zdorovja - I wish you to be healthy! - no too close to the English Hello! or Good Day! In answering that you can simply say the same word "Здравствуйте!" or "Привет!" = privet!, which is a less formal version of a greeting, close to the French "Salut!" Привет! Как дела? Как поживаешь? - would the Russians say when greeting good friends, and please note, that the questions here are not just meaningless sounds grouped together, you are actually expected to produce an answer, even if it is a rather short one, like " Нормально, все в порядке." - Normal'no, vse v por'adke" = OK, everything is fine. This is a little different from the English way of saying "Hi! How are you!" and expect no particular answer in return. Quite a lot of foreigners are usually bewildered when they say their "How are you?" greeting a Russian friend/acquaintance and hear a long a tedious account of what is actually "going on" in this person's life. So, practice how to say hello in russian and have fun! Here is a short video for you to listen to the formal and informal Russian greetings. Bye!
  13. Oh, food...russian food...only when you are away and cannot get some buckwheat (гречневая каша) for dinner you start to appreciate it. I encourage all those travelling to Russia to try Russian sweats: Зефир - a little like marshmallos but tastes sooooo much better Шоколад - Chocolate is waaaay creamier and does not have traces of soy Пироги Сухари Сушки all these little pleasure will make your time!
  14. It would be very interesting to hear what are the motivations of those who come to this forum to keep learning foreign languages. Would anyone like to share his/her thoughts? Ideas? Did you know that all astronauts are required to learn Russian? Otherwise they would not understand their Russian colleagues in space. Did you see that hilarious episode in the Big Bang Theory where one of the characters goes to the ISS and has to stay there for months? Even in the recent "Gravity" movie Sandra Bullock was stuck in the Russian Space Station where all manuals were written in Russian. So, if you plan to become an astronaut, learning Russian may really help! Best of luck in your future endeavours, fellow linguaholics!
  15. You are absolutely right, KatrinK! Just to note, that the letter Ѣ was not "pronounced as "-ять", but called so in an alphabet. The letter was pronounce in a number of ways (linguists have not come to a formal conclusion on what sound this letter marked) throughout the centuries before it was "dropped" in 1918 - not too long ago. Learning languages in perspective is a fascinating thing, don't you agree? Cheers! Пока!
  • Create New...