No lesson today. I just need to breathe a little bit.

My last update post was some time back in Thanksgiving. Back then I said I was up to my ears in work and I thought it’d get better once we get to the holiday. If I had more free time, I could write more lessons and experiment new features for the website.

Well, now is the holiday and I’m still up to my ears in work. I can work up to an amount and then crash. I feel like crashing 🙂 I budgeted my time as best as I could but I still don’t get as much done as I wish to.

Anyway, what’s next for the site for the next month (and maybe next year)?

More vocabulary casual conversation / situation: this is easier to explain than grammar. Expect this to appear more often.

Grammar lessons as usual, though the writing is so intensive that I won’t be able to write as much and as frequently as I did before.

Audio (and video)

  • self-recorded: well… tentatively. I’m still testing. A couple of test posts are up, but that’s it. The main thing is I still don’t have time to record, edit & post. It’s very time consuming. I’m still looking for a good voice recorder, too.
  • online audio & video: I swear if I found a reliable source for audio and video, I’ll post it up right away. Nothing helps a learner like listening to a ton of stuff. Gets you ready faster than anything. Anyone wants to go digging on YouTube (and wading through tons of junk) with me? No taker? 🙂

By the way, a word about “contributors”: I started to get emails/comments about “contributors” to the site. Bad news: I’m pretty disappointed with the proposals that I received. Most people who write to me

  • despite being native speakers, don’t have any experience teaching Vietnamese. This is the main thing. Without experience, they don’t really have anything (like idea or suggestion or content) to contribute. Not sure what they can help me with.
  • don’t show any real commitment – they think it’s all nice and fun and easy to write / prepare all these lessons. Every week or month I sit down and make a real commitment to do this: I would spend at least this much time, and write at least this number of lessons. If someone writes me a couple of time then disappear, well…

Anyway, things will get better 🙂


9 responses »

  1. Yeah, I’m pretty surprised to see this many posts within the last few weeks after you said you might not be able to post as much since the holidays are coming up, but you’re doing a superb job! Just don’t work too hard; after all, it IS holiday season, so you should take some time off and relax. You and this website are really helpful for me to better understand the Vietnamese language.

    I’m pretty concerned with that last part about “contributors”. Would I be considered a “contributor”? Just what do you mean by that? Like, who are the contributors?

  2. LOL it’s not you
    I always welcome question/comment/suggestions from readers and actual students learning Vietnamese
    making Vietnamese easier to learn is what the site is here for

    someone said he/she wants to “proofread” the site for me *in exchange for payment* (along with the many other spam comments I get)
    it’s too opportunistic/greedy and pissed me off
    I’m not opposed to earning money from honest work, but that message was unsolicited advertisement

    your comments are great, so keep ’em coming! 🙂

  3. Phew, goodness! I thought I was bugging the poo out of you. “Proofread”, huh? From that comment regarding the “cho dù”, you seem to do a pretty great job in that instant and whipped up a small explanation for me to understand. Seems like you wouldn’t need a “Proofreader”.

    By the way, I be tò mò, are you natively Vietnamese? And where do you work at? (USA/Asia?) And are there any phrases in Vietnamese that has the same meaning as “By the way”?

    I’ve been trying to learn Vietnamese by watching Hài Kịch on YouTube (mostly Hoài Tâm), and there’s a LOT of colloquial terminology/phrases that I don’t get, so please let me know if I’m starting to ask too much.

  4. yes, I’m a native speaker, plus I’ve been teaching for so long now that I can pretty much handle any question my students thrown at me at the top of my head 🙂

    by the way = tiện thể
    curious = tò mò
    people usually say “tò mò cho/xin hỏi chút + question you want to ask” or “tiện thể cho/xin hỏi + question you want to ask”

    Hoài Tâm comedy is hilarious
    but beginner students will have a heart attack ha ha

    sorry I was away for a few days without Internet
    and Chúc Mừng năm mới!

  5. Haha, I love Hoai Tam comedies; I want to own a DVD copy of each skit, but I can’t find any over the internet. I saw the jackfruit one back when I was in Vietnam in August; my cousins showed me it lol. The recent Hoai Tam video I watched was Ma Có Thật Không? The skit with Việt Hường playing with a Ouija Board in the graveyard had a LOT of talking in it, and I’ve been examining each word to try to understand it.

    A lot of times, I hear my mom and other people say this phrase “Nhiều khi” (I think I might’ve spelled it wrong). I asked my cousin what it means, and he says “It means ‘a lot of times'”. But from trying to understand the concept when I hear people say it, it sounds as if it means “In case” (Such as “You should be wary when walking around Detroit in case someone might rob you”)
    So what does “Nhiều khi” mean? And how would you say “Just in case”

  6. hmn… I’m not sure if nhiều khi has another meaning
    nhiều khi most commonly means “a lot of times”
    it sometimes implies “it is likely that…” or “there’s a high chance that…”
    nhiều khi + sentence
    nhiều khi em ra khỏi phòng mà quên không tắt đèn – a lot of times I get out of the room but forget to turn off the light
    nhiều khi mua xổ số mà không trúng – it’s likely/there’s a high chance that (you) buy lottery but don’t win (the lottery)

    just in case = phòng khi / nhỡ khi / lỡ (khi)
    usually it’s sentence 1 + phòng khi / nhỡ khi + sentence 2
    anh nhớ mang ô lỡ trời mưa = you should bring umbrella in case it rains
    trong nhà có nến phòng khi/ nhỡ khi nhà mất điện – there are candles in the house in case there’s a(n electricity) blackout (which is very common in Vietnam, especially in the summer, though very rare in the US)

    “You should be wary when walking around Detroit in case someone might rob you”
    this structure of this sentence in spoken Vietnamese is different from English
    word by word, it can be translated as “bạn nên cẩn thận trong khi đi bộ ở Detroit trong trường hợp có kẻ cướp”
    but colloquially, people will say
    đi ngoài đường ở Detroit nên đề phòng bị cướp = walking out on the street in Detroit, should beware of getting robbed

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