Sunday, November 27, 2011

sitting in the library...

I have been sitting here at the BSU library for the better part of two hours, trying to string together a series of German words into grammatically correct German sentences, and I fear what is developing is a pathetic attempt by a non-native speaker to look semi-competent in a language that she is not at all competent in.

What the hell has happened?!

Things I used to not have problems with: conjunctions, verb conjugations, the Verben mit Präpositional-Ergänzung (which I spent a good three weeks studying) are causing me a great deal of stress. I sit and contemplate for at least ten minutes the proper way to construct a sentence, only to get frustrated, type something that I know is incorrect down, and promptly lament my frustrations on various online outlets (the latest being, obviously, this blog).

I swear to God my German has progressed much like people progress in body pump class at Gold's Gym (now Axiom, I guess). You work super hard for an allotted period of time before you plateau and have two choices: you can continue in the body pump class, never getting stronger because the class is no longer what you need, or you can move up and get a personal trainer and have him kick your ass into shape.

Shitty analogy, I know. But it's all I can come up with right now.

I feel like that is what has happened to my German. I spent a year learning German, doing nothing BUT German, and I come back here and have two hours of German twice a week, on top of the dumb accounting classes, and work. The first six months of my German acquisition were rough--like Sisyphus pushing that rock up the hill. Then, at some point, things started to click, and my ability to fluently write German (and to some extent read) became progressively easier. Then I came back here. And things plateaued. Not only did they plateau, but I fear they are starting to tumble downhill (like Sisyphus' rock). I don't want to go back to where I was those first six months because fuck-it-all, I am not Sisyphus and I don't have to push that fucking rock up a hill. I will quit.

Maybe it is the weather or my overall defeated attitude right now, but I'm thinking I might need to take a semester off. $1500 is a lot to spend on tuition for two German classes, and I'm worried that my motivation to stick with German if I am not going to be living in Germany and can get a job that won't require me to know it will fall out about mid-way through March. Can someone sponsor me so I can just move back there and do the whole immersion thing again??

And now, back to this horrible essay...

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