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View Diary: Rice BUSTED. Dr. Fraud can't speak Russian after all. (280 comments)

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  •  not sure if i'm a good example (none)
    but i studied spanish in jr. high before going on to mandarin, classical chinese and japanese in undergrad and grad school, and i actually had a far harder time with the conjugations in spanish. that being said, it was probably due more to being a teenage fuckup who never studied than any statement on the relative difficulties of the language.

    of mandarin and japanese, tho, i'm gonna have to say that speaking japanese is far, far more difficult (altho mandarin pronounciation can be tricky at first), but written mandarin takes the cake. 3,000 kanji v. 30,000 hanzi, plus a kazillion times more classical idioms and other linguistic detrius referring back to one old historical event or folktale or work of obscure literature or another. then again, japanese is a snap in terms of pronounciation, and is a great phrasebook language, as long as you're reading directly from the page. making any original sentences, however, reduce me to gibberish. thank god i mostly need the language for reading academic journals, and not conversation.

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