Die grosse grenze (#13)

Valerian und Veronique Number 13

Zwei zeitlines. Valerian und Veronique hilfe ein andere agent von Galaxity to reisen zuruck. Irgendwie Russland und Tschernobyl sind in dieses geschicht.

Die serie hat kein benzin. Halb von die Geschichte ist nicht brauche.

Two timelines. Valerian and Veronique help a fellow Galaxity agent to journey home. Somehow Russia and Chernobyl are in the story.

The series is running out of gas. Half of the story could go away and nothing would be missed.

Sugar Mountain

Zucker is German for Sugar.

Berg is German for Mountain or Mound.

Zuckerberg means Sugar Mountain or Mound of Sugar.

Picture this:
“Good morning Mr. Sugar Mountain.”
“Could we discuss social media policy Mr. Sugar Mound?”

Maybe I can guess why the Chinese don’t take him too seriously…

You draw you own conclusions.

Memrise Conversational German

Memrise Conversational German achievment

Memrise Conversational German

FINALLY! Unlike the typical German phrases, this course contains colloquial phrases. A good example, “andere Mutter haben auch Schöne Töchter”, which translates directly as “other mothers have beautiful daughters too”, or put in American colloquial terms, “there are other fish in the sea”.

This one got me WAY out of my comfort zone, and that was probably a good thing.

Memrise Meminence ranking

I use memrise.com a lot. It is one of my preferred language learning sites.

It has been about two or two and a half years.

picture of Memrise Meminence award

Memrise Meminence award

I’ve finally made it to the “Meminence” ranking, which is nice.

More importantly, you will note the “5,619” words learned statement. It is interesting because is a massively low-balled number. They count every phrase as a “word”. Since lots of the language courses teach more than single words on a card, the 5,619 is way low. Note I’m am not unhappy about that.

So far, I’ve renewed my contact with Spanish. Learned more German, which STILL has a long way to go. I’ve started playing with French. I’ve gone through the ASL finger spelling course and the braille course. I’ve gone through at least two Toki Pona courses, for all the good that that did me. I am going through a Heisig Kanji course and have gotten through maybe 400 characters. Hiragana and Katakana have also been conquered, with lots of bumbling still involved in the review quizes. I touched LIGHTLY on the Korean characters, Hangul. I’ve decided to come back to that when I have more time. If I was still subscribed to Hulu and watching all of those made in Korea movies, I would give it a higher priority. Even if you don’t speak the language, being able to sound out the words can sometimes be interesting.

The next highest ranking is at 50,000,000 points. Given the current rate, I could achieve that ranking in the year 2025.

The real test comes down to what have I actually learned. My Spanish is much better and my German is weak but usable. I think I could carry out basic interactions in Spanish without issue. The German would be messy but doable. My French is at about 400 words which has some use but not much. I can read braille but I have lots of trouble feeling the braille. I have to slowly feel each character and decoding which bumps are there is maybe 70% on a good day, 40% on a bad day? My ASL finger-spelling is fine. I read the book “I Am Number Four” in an ASL finger spelling font. Yes, you read that correctly! So I think that I might not have a lot of speed, I can understand and use finger-spelling. When I sound out Katakana and Hiragana, I make mistakes. Sometimes I nail it, many times I at least get somewhere in the ballpark.

Some people ask why I bother since I really have no desire to talk to foreigners. I learned Spanish because there are enough speakers in my area to make it potentially useful. If I lived in some parts of California, I would pick up either Korean or Mandarin, depending on which was used more in the area that I was in.

I have learned some German to read German books. I have access to quite a few German sci-fi books and I want to eventually read them. Can you say Perry Rhodan with a volume count of 2,500 books? I’ve read the first 130 in English, but the others were never translated. I have access to many of those untranslated volumes.

Learning a bit of sign language has been interesting and a great way to analyze just how we communicate. While I will never have the vocab to really get the job done, I can handle the rudiments of ASL.

Toki Pona was another proof of concept language. I have never seriously tackled a conlang and I figured one with only 130 words would be fun without being a nightmare. If I were much younger, Esperanto would have been a necessity!

The Kanji is useful when a Kanji character pops up in a Japanime production. It can be fun to actually have an idea as to what is on the screen. I have no real use for Kanji, but I find the characters fascinating. My goal is to eventually get through the entire Heisig collection of about 2,500 characters. No pressure, no rush.

Stand by. I will try to update you in 2025.

Valerian und Veronique die Insel der Kinder (#10)

Valerian und Veronique Number 10

Valeren vertrat die Erde zu Simlan. Bei Simlan besuchen sie die Hauptstaat.

Helden von vier Planeten müssen konkurrieren drei Tage lang.

Tag eins, kräften der materie trotzen.
Tag zwei, Monstern aus dem Tierreich trotzen.
Tag drei, den fallen des geistes trotzen.

In der Vergangenheit, Helden nicht zurück kommen….

Drei Tage später gewonnen Valeren. Jetzt ist er mit der “Großmutter” von filena, der neuen Gruppe von Kindern fertig.

Ein Problem. Er ist jetzt geschrumpft! Veronique und Valeren gehe zu Erde.

The comic was all that hard to read, but there were some issues trying to describe what I read. Producing the vocab necessary was TOUGH. I had to go with a few words from Google, rather than providing all of them on my own… This story, unlike the past couple, made sense and was something I could understand.

Valerian und Veronique Trügerische Welten (#9)

“Deceptive Worlds”

Wir sehen Valerian en Uniform aus der ostindischen Gesellschaft, mit einer Armee gruppe, die eine Schloss angreift. Wir lernen, dass es ein Programm ist, wenn ein Offizier sagt: “Aber … das ist nicht programmiert!”

Valerian sendet Veronique eine Botschaft mit Koordinaten.

Wie Schande! Als nächstes ein Club vor Gentlemen, London neben der gleichen Zeit. Ausbruch mit einem Fahrrad fahren

Wie Schande! Weiter, San Francisco, Chinatown 1895. Aber da ist ein Mann mit einem Motorrad!

Es gibt viele springt, viele Zeiten, viele Geschicte.

Mit Zeit ist Valerian gerettet. Alles gut, glück ende.

Valerian und Veronique Number 9

We finally establish that Valerian has been in a stasis chamber in a computer holodeck-like environment.

He jumps from scenario to scenario while his partner, Veronique, along with a specialist, Jadna, searches for him. Jadna is a pain and an idiot.

Eventually, Jadna contacts the brain behind the simulation. In the end, she stays with that entity and Valerian and Veronique end up vacationing on Earth.

Orphelins Tome 1 Petits soldats and misc French stuff

Understand that I am learning some French and I find comics to be a simple way to start reading a foreign language. What I will usually do is learn a basic vocabulary. Then start trying to find a few comics. Later, hopefully, start reading a few simple books. With Spanish, I skipped the comics and went straight to the books. It was painful, but it did work. With German, I am still hitting the comics, and it is helping. With French, this is my first foray.

On the technical side, I tend to read comics on the full sized computer screen or my Amazon Fire.

I was looking for free French books for my Kindle on Amazon yesterday. I found quite the treasure trove with some unexpected gems. I found some interesting comics.

I ran into Valérian et Laureline, la cité des eaux mouvantes – Edition Definitive. I have read the German version, Die Stadt der tosenden Wasser, “the city of the roaring water”. This will be an excellent opportunity to dip my toe into reading French with simple known material.

I also ran into Orphelins – Tome 1 – Petits soldats. It is a comic of 192 pages. I tackled it immediately! I spent the afternoon yesterday going through it page by page. I somehow managed to get through it and I believe get more than just a “jist” version of the story! The illustrations were well done and the plot was fun. I can now say that I have gotten through my first French comic! A hundred and ninety two pages was a bit more than I planned to start with, but I made it! Well worth reading, if you get the chance! I liked it so much, I left a very positive review on Amazon. I left the review in English because I didn’t think butchered French would help…

I found Thorgal – tome 01 – La magicienne trahie. It is a 48 page comic that looks approachable. We will see.

I also ran into a few volumes of Sande BD, “Le magazine du crowdfunding BD”. Those magazines are above my level right now, but they look VERY interesting. I took a peek at their website. They have some very interesting projects in the works. There is a youtube channel that has some wild stuff! It looks like some of the French folks are leveraging crowdfunding to a whole new level. Take a look at the channel.

I found a few books as well. Lune de sang – La meute de Riverside Creek, Les Immortels (novella), La Reine du Chaos, La Figeuse du temps, Chassé-Croisé Paris SXM, Le Réveil des Dragons, Le Sceau, La Prisonnier de la planète Mars, and Esclave, Guerrière, Reine. When I get some serious confidence, which is going to take a while, I will tackle one of these.

All in all, a VERY happy weekend!