I am back to working hard on my Chinese studies after a break of a few weeks to work on my musical skills. Why, you ask? Well, because I enjoy it.
Yes, studying Mandarin as family and criminal defense attorney in beautiful scenic Bakersfield, California is a huge waste of effort. But really, would I be curing cancer if I wasn’t studying Chinese? My only other hobbies are playing the banjo (hey, I have nine kids and live in Bakersfield) and the cello (my parents are smart). From a practical viewpoint, none of it is particularly productive. But I watch so little TV I do not know how to turn it on. I don’t even like watching movies. I just do CrossFit once in a while, play video games, play with my herds of children, study Chinese, play my music, and work hard in my business. Hey, it’s a life.
I would just love to go to Taiwan some day. My brother’s wife is from there, so I actually have family in Taiwan, so to speak. She goes there all the time. And Chinese is just inherently interesting.
I am using Pleco as my electronic flashcards for the study of characters. I have them constantly at hand on my phone, so I never have a dull moment. I can always make myself curse in frustration no matter where I am or what is going on around me. It’s a great skill for boring moments in court or church.
I am using Rosetta Stone as my primary study aid at home. The experts online talk mad smack about it, but I like it and find it effective. I mean, no program is ever going to make you totally fluent by itself. But I know I heck of a lot more Chinese than before I started the course.