News, News, and Reviews

So, this is what happens when I get busy and my stack of blog topics I earnestly want to write about become irrelevant to my mind: I don’t write new posts. This, of course, occurs in the life hierarchy on many levels. I don’t believe that I will ever be a good multitasker; it’s simply not in my skillset. Oh, well. But I’m up, and I don’t have to be anywhere for a couple hours and, thus, I will give a few soundbites:

Is Simone Biles still news? I’m not sure why. Look, shame her if you want or laud her as a hero. It’s up to you. As always, my take is a little simpler. Simone Biles used to be a good athlete. That’s why she’s decorated with medals. I’ve seen her routines, too, and been impressed with her flying leaps, even if I know nothing about all those air twists gymnasts keep talking about of late. Historical athletes are knows for not giving up and walking away. I get that. But has anyone been acting normal since the Covid lockdowns? Absolutely not. People have been acting in weird, unprecedented ways. I’d just leave it at that. The Olympics went forward, but perhaps they shouldn’t have, especially with the forced vaccinations involved in some cases, and the abject shaming of athletes who weren’t forced to get it but who refused because they didn’t know how an unknown variant would affect their performance. Remember that athletes must care first and foremost for their primary equipment, which is their bodies. We are still living in unprecedentedly stupid times, though (this smug little piece of work even pulled the Bible out in her shaming; what a — never mind). I would just leave it at that regarding Simone Biles. Let her be. She might have a comeback, or she might discover she has a life waiting for her outside of competition. Later, she can write her memoir: Olympic Dreams Dashed in the Time of Covid.

Does anyone actually care about Covid any longer? Apparently they do, if they are willing to misuse the Bible in their attempt at getting everyone vaccinated. For my part, I’m not going to start wearing a mask again. I have a hot-to-trot governor who has said the phrase “out of an abundance of caution” so many times in the last year and half that I’ve lost count. Out of an abundance of caution, we shut down our economy. Out of an abundance of caution, we shut down our schools. Out of an abundance of ——, we bribed our Idiocracy with $100 bills and $250k lottery winnings for getting vaccinated. Look, New Mexico leads the nation in getting the Covid vaccine and falls last in education. What does that tell you about human beings? Uneducated people are more likely to trust “experts” and take the bait dangled for them. Did you ever watch the Idiocracy film? I recommend it. The refrain of the comic side character for why he does exceedingly stupid things that make no sense is I like money. That’s the level we’re operating at in New Mexico. It drives me insane because I know people here aren’t that stupid…and yet, they are willing to be. On a slightly related note, people often shut down when I talk to them because, as I’ve heard repeatedly, “I don’t listen to people who use words with more than two syllables.” To which, I’ve replied, “You do realize syllables has three?” Blank stares, followed by eyerolls.

This reminds me of why I quit using Duolingo. They are actively engaged in the destruction of the English language and, because I know they are actively engaged in this, I realize they are probably destructing other languages as well. This does not make them a trustworthy app for teaching languages. This review of a popular app probably requires an entire blog post, but I’ll leave you with one example: their only accepted translation for the Spanish expression Yo tampoco is me neither. This is a colloquial expression I haven’t used since childhood because as I grew older I learned to speak and write in adult English. My husband also uses adult English. He generally says, “Nor I,” though I already know that is a different Spanish expression, Ni yo, and wouldn’t be accepted. Most people I know don’t use kindergarten level English. Most people I know have read a few books, at the least, and usually respond appropriately in context: —I don’t like this language app. –Neither do I! Unfortunately, when you “mistranslate” something on Duolingo by going outside kindergarten level discourse, you lose one of five hearts. When you lose all five, you can’t access new lessons for at least four hours. Since I refused to use the expression me neither, I lost all my hearts and didn’t get all five back for twenty hours. Yes, that’s right. Twenty hours. This has left me with the impression that Duolingo is not trying to help me learn a second language, but training me to use a degraded version of my native tongue by punishing me with so-called mistakes that aren’t actually mistakes. It’s bad enough that I’m punished for making real errors, anyway…but that’s where this review deserves its own blog post.

Upon reading this post, I decided to add a very short news update to this list: we now have political prisoners in the USA. Let that sink in.

There you have it: two [nay, three] little blurbs on current news and one review. Perhaps later this weekend, I might give a longer review on Duolingo and why I now hate it.

Share

3 comments

  1. Out of an abundance of caution, we should [REDACTED] the majority of American politicians with a [REDACTED], because they’ve historically been doing a lot of harm for a while and it’s starting to really wear on people.

  2. Didn’t know that about Duolingo. I played with a few times . I used to love this site called Spanishdict.com. That was ,gasp, before I joined Facebook! We had an actual bilingual group of people there who chatted . I’m still friends with several of them , now on Facebook. Sadly I’ve neglected my Spanish education.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *