Coming Out of Left Field

Thursday, March 31, 2005


If Rogue Slayer hadn't beaten me to it, I might have called this post "Has anyone seen my brain?" Actually, the fact that I couldn't come up with an interesting title is a good indication of how damn tired I am from the last several days.

I did get a break last Friday, getting to go to the Jewish preschool where my wife works. Aside from the weekly Shabbat activities, many teachers and students dressed up for Purim, several of them as King Achashverosh. This resulted in a bit of comedy when one little boy, who was also the Shabbat helper from my wife's class, stood up during service and announced, "I'm the only king!", not once but several times. Awfully cute and, as it turns out, typical for him ... later on, when he asked my wife about me, he said, "Where's your daughter?" (My wife was not amused.) It was a good visit, and one of the other kids even made me a "chocolate and vanilla pie" while we were out on the playground. Since the ingredients were mud and snow, I was glad to be summoned back inside before actually tasting the proffered pastry.

Also fun, if more challenging, was the Chinese class the wife and I went to last night. Even though we've both taken some of the language before, we both felt we wanted to start at the beginning. Most of the first session was spent on pronunciation of the various sounds, which has always been hard for me. My dad says that people from Beijing speak better than people from Taiwan; they definitely speak clearer, and distinguish between sounds that for other folks are virtually the same. That, plus the usual anxiety about being called on in class, kept me second-guessing myself before I opened my mouth. Good thing both of us are taking it -- I need to practice, and I wouldn't want to inflict my accent on total strangers.


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