I have chopped off a part of my left index finger with a hand scythe splitting kindling for the wood burning stove. Ouch! is all I can say. No guitar for a while or a lot of other things. I wonder if it will grow back normally or will I have a permanent sharp angled finger? Frustrated and bored, I have been playing with other things – although even typing this sucks.
I have been trying to master/learn/hear the four tones in Mandarin, not easy. Thank goodness it is not Taiwanese with eleven, or Cantonese with seven. My brother made a short video for me with anchor-point instructions, see here. Additionally I have discovered The Dude System or suprasegmental phoneme mastery by Kaiser Kuo (originally printed in Insiders Guide to Beijing 2010 p. 487 excerpted here):
Tone the first: Dude, the disapproving tone, as to the clumsy roommate who has just knocked over your Graphix, and gotten bong water all over your Poli Sci 142 Reader “Dude, I can’t believe you spilled my bong again.”
Tone the second: Dude?, in the concerned but creeped-out way you might address the roommate you discover sitting naked and cross-legged in the dark, chanting “Nam myoho-renge-kyo” and sounding a little brass bell.
Tone the third: Duuude (slight uptick) scornfully as if your roommate has asked to borrow 50 dollars so his sensei can align his chakras: Yeah right, dude.”
Tone the fourth: Dude! As if exclaiming in triumph to your roommate when coming home from class having gotten a date with mega-babe Elena from Macroeconomics.
The other thing I have learned is how to count to ten on one hand. I learned from my little nephew. Apparently everyone here knows this. I had never heard of it…it probably is common knowledge but see the photos for demonstration. Who knew? I like little tricks in life: how to tie a shoe properly, the governess knot, the eleven times table trick…I am now addicted to counting to ten.
Try it. You’ll like it! (The slideshow is a little slow, but I cannot change the settings).