'Y' is a punch in the stomach, and handwritten text is a curse ': how the Russian language drives Americans crazy
Source: Life hacker
Russian learners tell why hissing sounds drive you crazy, the word slippers caresses your ears, and complex cases teach humility.
Russian is one of the most difficult languages, reminds Life hacker. Those who teach it as a foreign one are looking for clues: for which words you can fall in love with Russian, which cannot be found in your native language, the meaning of which words is easy to guess. They orient themselves, as they can, in the wondrous world of the Cyrillic alphabet, conjugations and cases. We unearthed the strangest and most interesting life hacks of those for whom Russian is not native.
Just add "-to"
When you are tired and forget all your vocabulary, just drop “-ow” at the end of any English verb “and pray to the gods of cross-cultural communication”, as BuzzFeed journalist Suzy Armitage, who studied Russian, writes.
“If 'get started' is a real word, the possibilities are endless,” says Susie.
"Y" as the sound of a blow to the stomach
Especially hard for foreigners are some sounds. The French, for example, learn to pronounce "x" from scratch. There is no such sound in their language, but instead of the words we know, we get “kleb”, “cow breeder” and “calva”. It’s hard for everyone to get a “s” "Imagine that you just got kicked in the stomach, then you get the perfect Russian" s "," taught American professor Armitage.
“S! S! S! S! S! S! S! S! S! Y! ”- you howl like a bunch of drunk sea lions.
Three friends who drive you crazy: "h", "w" and "u"
“Why?” And “For what?” - these are the questions asked by people who first get acquainted with Russian consonants. It is easy to confuse “w”, “u” and “h” when the sounds are new to you, and as a result, native speakers don’t understand you at all. You need the Shukhovskaya tower, asked for the way as I could, arrived at the Schukinskaya station. This is the norm.
What do you mean? Open the "box"? Ah, the box.
Cases teach humility
Everyone who learns Russian goes through levels of humility. It looks like this: first you learn, then you learn more, then you learn a little more, you begin to feel confident, and then you are mistaken in cases. The only way to stay calm and continue is to learn humility.
Six synonyms for to go
A sophisticated test for a foreign student is to write a little story about a walk around the city. In order to tell her, you have to use six different verbs instead of the native to go: “go”, “go”, “go out”, “go around”, “go through” and “go in”. To indicate the scale of the tragedy, we recall that in Russian the glass is on the table, and the plug is on.
Handwritten text looks like an encrypted curse
Armitage says that written texts in Russian for a foreigner have a special status. Firstly, no matter how you try to write beautifully, it will turn out like a third-grader. Secondly, you will still not be able to read texts written by hand by native speakers for quite some time. Thirdly, most likely, you will become much worse off handwriting in your native language. Enchanted circle.
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Polite turns seem to Russian rude
For native English speakers, it seems strange that their usual way of asking for something, such as making an order in a cafe (I would like a cup of coffee, please. - “I would like a cup of coffee, please.”), Seems to be for Russian speakers rude, as if a person is important.
Instead of “Could you pass me the salt, please,” foreigners learn to say imperative: “Give me the salt, please.” Russians learning English suffer from being rude native speakers of English.
The harmless “Give me the salt please” in English sounds like an ultimatum: “Pass me the salt, please.”
“Write” and “write” - a trap for a beginner
The sphere of the Russian language for a foreigner is a hotbed of awkward situations. Due to the consonance of the words “circumcision” and “education”, a bizarre change of stress in the word “write” depending on the meaning, many beginners catch a smile in their conversation with the Russians. Of course, you can understand what is meant, but it’s difficult to resist laughing.
If you want to be understood, say English words with an accent
Western brands, penetrating the Russian market, begin a new linguistic life. The most striking example is Nike. For decades, we bought Nike sneakers, while everyone in the US, UK, and other countries called Nike. It is curious that in the cinema in Russian dubbing, translators nevertheless tended to the popular version.
In order to order Sprite or Long Island in a Russian bar, writes Armitage, one should name drinks with a hard Russian accent, otherwise they will not understand. Well, or just point your finger, often it makes life much easier. It is difficult for many English speakers to realize that all their life they incorrectly called the main alcoholic drink from Russia and said “wadka”.
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Take care of others - call yourself in Russian
“If you call your name the way you are used to doing it, they will not understand you in Russia or they will still speak incorrectly,” complains Susie Armitage. Especially hard, she notes, are people with names like Seth or Ruth. Ruth? Ore? What?! How right ?!
“Yacht Club”, “Xerox” and “Body Shaming” as a big hello from home
In the Russian language there are a lot of borrowings from English and just similar words: we really start, finish, flirt and invest. Especially a lot of such words that have come into use recently: “post”, “google”, do “drawing”. Therefore, when a student studying the Russian language, after cramming cases and stresses stumbles upon it, his soul becomes a little calmer.
“Beloruchka” and “lawlessness”: words and their unique meanings
Many concepts familiar to us seem strange to foreigners, albeit accurate. They cannot find synonyms for them in their own language. Business Insider cites several such words: “longing”, “vulgarity”, “being”, “lawlessness”, “how much”, “sushnyak”, “beloruchka”.
"Slippers" as an occasion to fall in love with the Russian language
Many people touch touching new words when they start to learn Russian. To some it seems charming a “front garden” instead of a garden, to someone - a “pillow” underneath the ear and an “eye”. Katherine Sperling for the magazine about foreign languages Babbel talked about which of them sunk into her soul.
In the first place - “slippers”. Against the background of the English version of house slippers, our word contains something more.
“The very sound“ top-top-top ”, which is heard when you walk, is even in their name and refers to the verb“ stomp ”. Therefore, the word "slippers" crept into my speech when I speak English or German, "- says Katherine.
Following the “slippers” - “hedgehog”. In English, these animals are called rigidly: "hedzhhogs" (hedgehogs). There is no diminutive form for them, often for this they add the word little, and it turns out nicer: “little hedgehog”. But, says Sperling, the affectionate "hedgehog" perfectly reflects the look of the animal.
The multifaceted word "so"
“So” possesses special magic - an adverb, a union, a particle and an introductory word all rolled into one. Sperling notes that a short “like that” contains many tones. It takes a moment to think - say "so." If you want to seem formidable, say so. Do you want to pay attention to the problem? "So"!
“So” I learned from my husband’s grandmother. I still don't speak Russian fluently enough, so our communication often goes downhill. When we both decide to give up, she says "so", which means: "Everything is fine, at least we both agree that trying to explain further is useless." When we understand each other, she also says "so", that is: "Aha, great." A word for all occasions, which is why I like it, ”says Katherine.
In addition to the fact that the passage itself from “no, probably” can drive a meticulous person crazy, a foreigner needs to deal with commas in it. But those who study Russian, take their tricks into arms and begin to use it themselves, especially enjoy it. A foreigner who has learned to say “no, probably” to the place is almost a carrier.