Blog by Sumana Harihareswara, Changeset founder

10 Dec 2000, 18:34 p.m.

Final and paper and presentation

Hi, reader. I wrote this in 2000 and it's now more than five years old. So it may be very out of date; the world, and I, have changed a lot since I wrote it! I'm keeping this up for historical archive purposes, but the me of today may 100% disagree with what I said then. I rarely edit posts after publishing them, but if I do, I usually leave a note in italics to mark the edit and the reason. If this post is particularly offensive or breaches someone's privacy, please contact me.

Maybe there is no one best way to Learn Russian. Certainly immersion, though perhaps statistically more effective, leaves some of us dogpaddling and flailing about for lifeboats and buoys.

I'm glad I'm learning Russian, but it's frustrating to have to conform to a pace that seems just a bit too fast for me. And I get angry and depressed when I feel as though I'm letting my teacher down when I can't remember a word, or I use the wrong case ending, or whatever. *I* know I'm just learning, and I know a teacher does too, in theory, but what about in practice? Wouldn't you resent the little brats who forgot a bit of grammar the moment they left the classroom?


I have a final at 9 am and a review session (to which I will be an hour late, thanks to the 2-hour 9am final) at 10 am, and an essay due -- In Russian! -- at noon, and right after that an oral presentation, also In Russian. Sigh.

But at least -- brightside here -- when I saw "Thirteen Days" at a screening on Tuesday, and you should see it too if you're not hard-core boycotting the MPAA, I heard and understood Russian dialogue. Woo-hoo! What a contrast to the D&D flick, where near the end Jeremy Irons grew incomprehensible, spitting and flailing, indecipherable, though I'm pretty sure he was speaking in English.

I will try to translate this Russian now, and look up some important words, and go to sleep and get enough sleep so that I have satisfyingly disturbing dreams. G'night from here in Berkeley.


What is the ghettoest blue book?

  • A blue book with pages rip't out
  • A mini-sized blue book
  • A blue book with the name of a different university on't
  • A blue book that listens to rap

Originally published by Sumana Harihareswara at