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Your Wish Is My Command Posted by on Sep 30, 2008 in Uncategorized

This blog is a few months old now (if it were a baby it’d be fed solids with a spoon), and I’ve been feeling very guilty lately. Why? Because I just write this stuff and post it here and it finally came to me that I never really thanked you. You – my readers. Well, it’s about time, I hear you say.

So, without any further ado, please accept my sincere thanks for coming here, reading what I write, leaving constructive comments and generally, for making this Polish blogging experience so pleasant for me. I couldn’t have done it without you. Sounds like a dorky cliché, yes I know, but as it often happens with dorky clichés, it’s also absolutely true.

It’s interesting for me to see how this blog has been evolving, well, at least I hope that’s what it’s been doing, but because I do write this stuff, it might be hard for me to stay objective. Especially since staying objective has never been my strong point.

And hence my question to you. Tell me what you want to read on here! See, it wasn’t even a proper question, but an order.
So, here’s a proper question for you: what is your reason for learning Polish? I think that knowing it will help me blog better, and besides, I’m really nosey and want to know.

I know that some of you have Polish spouses (or am I imagining things here?) and I also know that having a foreign partner is indeed great motivation to learn whatever goofy language that partner may speak. So, to everybody who’s learning Polish because of their wives (and I kind of suspect, it’s the wives that are Polish, am I right?), I feel your pain – I had to learn Japanese for my man. And you thought you had it bad, huh?

But I know there are many more of you out there who read this blog, and I want to be able to write about what YOU want me to write about. So please tell me!
Is there too much useless stuff on here? Too much grammar? Not enough current events? More pretty pictures like this one? Too much complaining? Not enough complaining? Hey, I’m Polish, I’m SUPPOSED to complain, it’s my national birthright, or somesuch.

So, your wish is my command. You demand, I deliver. Tell me what you want to read on this blog, and it will magically appear. Well, not exactly magically, but you know what I mean. I want to make it the best Polish Blog in the blogosphere.

In October I’ll be preparing a cute little surprise for you and when it’s ready it will be a great addition to this blog. You want a hint? More voice files – a new Polish word every day. How’s that for cool, huh? In the meantime, we’ll have to be patient while this is all coming together. I’m very curious myself how it’s going to turn out.

But apart from that, please tell me what your motivation for learning Polish is, and what you’d like me to cover in my future posts. Just please don’t say that more grammar! I sometimes think we have a grammar overload here already.

Ok, but if you really want more grammar, that can be, of course, easily arranged.

Words for today:

PS. Yes, I know that some of you come here and read this blog, because you’re my friends and I told you to do it. But if there are any particular subjects you want me to cover, please chime in too, OK?

photo (Gdańsk) by Pete

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Comments:

  1. Pszetfurnia:

    To powiedzenie brzmi trochę inaczej: Twoje życzenie jest dla mnie rozkazem. “Mój rozkaz” to rozkaz wydany przeze mnie. Pozdrawiamy. 🙂 🙂

  2. David Piekarczyk:

    My reason for wanting to learn Polish is not my wife. I am an American/Pole, born in the U.S. and all ancestors from Poland. I spoke Polish until I was 8 years old but when my grandparents died, my parents let the language die with them. I only found out I had relatives in Poland when I was 55. I made two trips to Poland to meet with them, couldn’t communicate well and decided I had to relearn the language. My wife in not Polish but also wanted to be able to speak with my relatives so she began to learn the language. When it came time to retire in 2007 we decided we would move and live in Poland so I could know my family here. We live in Poznań and I have the status of Permanent Resident because of proven documentation that I am of Polish blood. For us, learning the language is not a curiosity but a necessity. We learn 25 new words each week, studied Polish at Mickiewicz University our first year here and now study alone. One cousin, from Golina, IM’s with me everyday. He writes in English, I write in Polish and we correct each other.

    What could you add to your blog…….useful, everday expressions with vocal pronunciation.

  3. Thomas Westcott:

    Prosze, bardzo

    wy jestes’cie poz.a,dani

    Anna,

    I have been using the ECTACO Partner X8 to help translate letters (list – pl) into Polish. I think that with various dictionaries; electronic, web, and book; I maybe communicating about half of the intended actual meaning. Both of the above phrases are supposed to say ‘you are welcome’. However they translate back into English as Please, very and you are desirable . Poz.a,dany is supposed to be one of the ways to translate welcome.

    I have also been using the X8 to help me learn Polish. I could write an article about the using the X8. Please email me and we can discuss this.

    The Before You Know It lite download from Transparent Language has been very helpful in learning as well.

    Could you please do audio files of the Polish alphabet and letter combinations that represent one sound? Especially for us slow learners.

    My wife has taught me some words and phrases that do not appear in any dictionary. Some of these are vulgar or common idiomatic things, but some are just really strange. I am not sure of how to express this but apparently some subjects are forbidden to talk about in Poland. Like the words that are false friends, some of these strange words do have perfectly good meanings and translations. But they also have other meanings that can be really embarrassing, especially if spoken in mixed company.

    I started learning Polish so I could talk to my wife. My progress has been painfully slow. So slow in fact that over the years my motivation has changed to ‘I am going to master this language for me, for the challenge of it, for the culture and history, and for exercising my brain.’ Also, there is a social element as well. That is that I have made new friends from attending Saturday School last school year. And I have made new friends from attending the Polish baptist church, Kos’cio’l/ Zbawiciela, in Norridge, Illinois, USA.

    Now that I am living in Mountain Home (go’ra domowy) Idaho, I am relying on your blog to help keep me interested, motivated, and spending time on a regular basis learning more about the Polish language and culture.

  4. Anna:

    Pszetfurnia,
    I realized that last night when I turned off my computer and I’ve been wondering how many people would notice. 🙂 hehehe! Thanks!
    And as my man has just pointed out, the same can be said about the English version when you translate it directly (which is what my brain did last night) but of course since it’s become an idiom nobody even thinks about the logical meaning of it anymore. Funny how such phrases tend to evolve. I see the same happening to the Polish phrase in casual writing and conversations.

  5. ajay:

    Anna,
    I am Indian and I am studying to be a catholic priest , in Italy, Rome. I wish to study just because I’ve a Polish friend who helps me like an angel. So when you said that Poles are pessimistic, I was a little bit angry as though you were saying something bad about my parents!
    I wish if you can add some conversations once in a while, it would help me, I think. I mean, spoken Polish.
    I’m realy thankful for the good things you write about Poland. I begann to love Poles as I was translating an English book about St.Faustina Kowlska into Malayalam, my language.

  6. Bonnie:

    Thank you for the blog. I look forward to it.
    I am of Polish decent, as is my husband. For both of us, our great grandparents immigrated about the same time, none of them speaking English. As their children were born, English was learned in school, Polish spoken at home. Then when they died, the language just faded away at home. I want to teach our children and grandchilden our language, beyond the Spanish and French they learn from preschool and up. We use Learn Polish and BYKI lite for the grandchildren, and Rosetta Stone is loaded on my laptop, but it’s hard to find worksheets or study materials for the younger set’s interest.
    Thanks again
    Bonnie

  7. George Zeltner:

    Anna

    I enjoy your blog and read it almost daily. I am currently taking an evening Polish class at one of the local colleges but am finding learning and speaking the language extremely hard. I tell the instructor that my lips and tongue don’t move the same way as hers. The reason for my learning is that my wife is Polish/American and when her family gets together they all speak Polish and I’m sure they are talking about me.
    My wife and I had a chance to visit Poland last year and found it to be a beautiful country and all the people very friendly. She got to visit some of her cousins and the old family church.
    I think it would be very helpful if you could have a Polish Word of the Day with audio. Keep up the good work….

  8. Fran Turner:

    Hi Anna,

    My maternal grandparents came from a small town near Rzeszow in the late 1800’s to Schenectady, New York. At that time, the region they were from was part of Austria. My mother was born and raised in upstate NY where she attended the Polish Catholic school and learned her Polish grammar which was, sadly, more education in the Polish language than my babcia had. So, fast forward a few decades when I am born. At about 6 years, I hear my mom and Babcia talking and I cannot understand anything they are saying! This was very disconcerting. Dad is not Polish so mom never spoke Polish to us kids. When I found out what was going on, I decided I wanted to learn Polish someday and more about my heritage from that part of the world. So fast forward a few more decades. The kids are raised and I have grandkids of my own now. The local Polish Hall offers a class in beginning Polish and I rediscover my dream of learning Polish. I also discover a whole world of friendly folks on-line who are willing to help out. Sadly (for us), our Polish instructor returned to Poland and noone else has been found to continue our classes, but I am floundering on. I am most interested in the cultural items that you write about. Thank you for the wonderful blog which keeps me inspired.

    Fran

  9. Annaliz:

    Hi Anna,
    I found your blog soon after I started work in a vegetable packhouse, where most of the staff are Polish. It was very difficult to settle in there so I decided to try to learn some basic Polish even if it was just to exchange hellos with people. Your blog has helped me realise a lot more about your culture and the grammar is interesting, it’s nearly as complicated as English! I’m not a natural linguist and my Polish friends are often in stitches trying to teach me the right pronounciation; of course, I couldn’t understand why different people used different ending sounds to words, thanks to you I now do.

    I’m going to try to make your cheesecake recipe, would you believe it Tesco sell the twarog cheese you mentioned (they stock quite a bit of Polish food here in Cornwall), so it’ll probably be a surprise addition to our family Christmas menu. More recipes would be good…

    Please keep up the good work, certainly more voice files would be helpful, as my brain is still thinking in English when I look at written Polish.

  10. Taylor:

    Cześć!

    I am a bit of a younger student of Polish, but I really love this blog. My mother’s family is Polish, although she did not grow up speaking the language. At the time, her parents and many others in the area where she grew up used Polish to discuss things they did not want the children to know about. I speak Spanish fluently and have little trouble learning Russian, but Polish is much more difficult for me. I also use BYKI, Berlitz phrase books, and grammar workbooks I bought online. I would just love to learn more conversational tools and simple conjugations for present, past, and future tenses. Again, I love this blog and find it very informative.

    Taylor

  11. mick:

    I don’t have any real reason to learn Polish, it is a hobby that isn’t taken too seriously. I like learning at my own pace, it is relaxing.

    Polish is my Mt. Everest. There is no reason to climb it but people do anyway, kind of a crazy thing to do :-(. I suppose its an ego thing for me, good for my confidence.

    I would like you to post some words and phrases that are used in real life everyday conversation, a snippet of something that you heard recently.

    I like all the other stuff on your blog and wouldn’t leave any of it out.

  12. Dorota:

    Hi Anna,
    I actually came across your blog a few weeks ago, but this is my first time posting. Both my parents are from Poland, and I am first generation (first born) Polish-American in my family. However, when I was younger I didn’t want to learn Polish at all, and stubbornly refused to go to Polish school. Then the summer before college started, my mother gave a plane ticket to Poland, to visit relatives. When I went there, I knew next to nothing, and was quite embarrassed. I could understand everything my aunts and uncles said (since my mother always spoke to me in Polish) but I always found it difficult to say anything without messing up the grammar. Now, I’ve started college and when I heard that my school offers Polish classes, I thought it would be nice to get back to my roots. To say it was hard would be a understatement, but now I really want to learn my parents’ language, so I’ve been working at it. I wanted to thank you because your blog has kept me going and even furthered my interest in the Polish language. I hope to see this blog continue for a long LONG time. P.S. I especially like the complaining (because this is what we Polish people do best) so please do go on. Personally, I’d like to see more culture and history posts, because I never really had much of an education there, either in school or from my mother. My family tried to Americanize really quickly, which I sort of regret now.
    Well that’s my reason for learning Polish, hope my story didn’t bore you.
    -Dorota

  13. Pszetfurnia:

    Anna,

    Having read all those comments above I must say:

    CON GRA TU LA TIONS!

    🙂

  14. David Honley:

    Hi Anna!
    Your blog is great – ‘to świetnie!’ I really like the way you do things at present; a lot of variety. Whatever you write about or explain is always very interesting. Keep up the good work, including the grammar component please. How about more on the nightmare area concerning Polish numbers? 🙂
    I was first motivated to try and learn Polish through employing a young Polish lady in England. As a joke I asked later: ‘If I learn some Polish could I go to Poland with you at Xmas and spend the festive season with you and your family?’ ‘Tak, oczywiście’, she replied. Since then my interest in the language and Poland’s fascinating history has grown and grown.
    At last I have found a Polish course in England and am attending language classes each week. And I’m thoroughly enjoying the course – and wish to do, first my GCSE in Polish, and then continue the studies further.
    Pozdrawiam serdecznie, David

  15. Anna:

    Wow! And here all I can do is to repeat once again – Wow! It’s official, I have the most amazing readers ever! 🙂
    I will do my bestest to incorporate all your wishes and suggestions. Your comments gave me a lot to think about and I want to thank you for taking the time to answer my question. It will definitely help me in making this blog even better 😉

    PS. And Psze, dang dude, you’re going to keep me on my toes. One mistake and I know I’m gonna get pwned! LOL!

  16. Theresa:

    Hi

    Thanks for this blog. I am an American of Polish descent My mom’s parents both came from “Polish Russia” circa 1913 / 1914. I am learning Polish because I want to be able to communicate with new found cousins in Poland who we never knew existed when my grandparents where alive. I still miss my grandparents although they have been gone for many years learning Polish makes me feel like they are still with me in some way.

  17. Teresa:

    Hej!
    Anno, Twój blog jest znakomity:). W interesujący sposób komentujesz, to co dla native speaker’ów jest oczywiste, przez co często nam umyka.
    Pozdrawiam

  18. Anna:

    Hi Teresa!
    Thank you so much for your comment (for those who don’t understand Polish, Teresa says: Anna, your blog is excellent. You comment in a very interesting way about things that are obvious to native speakers, and hence, we often don’t even notice them.)
    You know Teresa, I’ve started to look at Polish the way I would at a foreign language, and it’s amazing to realize the amount of stuff I don’t know and to see just how “foreign” Polish can be, even to a native speaker. 🙂

  19. viallietta2:

    Potenza in ogni momento rappresentava la capacita dell’uomo di continuare la sua corsa ad essere il padre di famiglia – Italia Viagra.

  20. ania:

    Thank YOU for writing your blog, and for bringing back the full text emails!! I was so happy when I started seeing them full text again – I usually work late and forget to take breaks, so receiving your evening Polish Blog emails is always a welcome break!

    I am learning Polish because I have Polish family. My family communicates in English very well, but I consider learning Polish to be an important part about learning my heritage. That, and I love it – it certainly is always a challenge!

    I love that your blog covers such a range of topics, from current events to Polish traditions or even just how to describe what kind of jewlery I like 🙂 You really have struck the right balance and your blog is never monotonous, so fantastic job! I have no suggestions for improvement but if I think of any I will let you know.

    Looking forward to future posts! Dziekuje!

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    Автодилер советует приобрести Fiat. Автосалон предлагает обратить внимание на Исудзу

  22. J R.:

    3rd gen pol-american. never spoke much growing up. cept maybe overheard bad words or other cordial greftings. now have polish girl born in poland

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