The difference between reading and listening


… is profound. You may have noticed. I got out of my Spanish class about 45 minutes ago and I’m still wiped out from concentrating so hard to understand what the fnarsh the professor was saying. Reading Spanish? No problemo. It sits there, waiting to be understood, not going anywhere. Listening for comprehension in Spanish? Another creature altogether. The words fly out of la boca, into my brain pain, and out my ears with a little trickle of blood. I caught bits and pieces, and thank god she repeated some very pertinent information in English, because not only was she whizzing along en Espanol, but she was FACING THE DAMN CHALKBOARD! Woman! Do you have no concept of how much hearing loss I’ve sustained over the years? I cannot hear you when you turn your back to the desks and talk to the chalkboard! Talk to my face with your face!

I also think she’s from Spain. And no fair that some of my (much younger, thinner, more fluent) classmates spent the summer in Belize. It’s been a loooooooooong time since I was in this far over my head. Ayudame, dios!

In other news, that motard Rick Perry has finally done something right and commuted Kenneth Foster’s sentence (although I really don’t think that Foster deserves life in prison, either, but at least he gets to stay alive). I’ve been meaning to write about this for a while, but the whole thing has made me so terribly sad that I couldn’t bear to sit with those feelings long enough to write about them. Suffice to say that I nearly wept tears of joy when I got the email. It ain’t justice by a long shot, but it’s a start.

I have to go to the gym and slog off some of the scallion pancake I had for lunch. Ugh. 4.5 more hours on campus to go.

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3 Comments

  1. BetsyD

     /  August 31, 2007

    I took one of those classroom performance seminars at CU and the first and probably best piece of advice I was given was not to talk into the chalkboard. Write first, turn around, then talk. It’s amazing what a difference it makes.

    Reply
  2. Martha

     /  August 31, 2007

    Barely connected comment: I meant to tell you — my father-in-law taught the Coco’s folks how to make those delicious, delicious pancakes. I mean, seriously, did I marry right or what?

    Reply
  3. I have learned that when you read something you brain has a better chance of picking it up than when listening to someone talk for 4 hours straight.

    Reply

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