Category Archives: language interference

Insider/Outsider Accent And Adaptation

12 August 2015.     TV = 1182.9 hours.     AUA: reading/writing classes = 58 hours, advanced class = 1203 hours, total class time = 2199 hours; currently at reading/writing level 2.

In this scene from episode 2 of มงกุฎดอกส้ม (mong kut dawk som) wife number one, addressing her Thai-born son with an obvious mixture of pride and affection, expresses concern that he’s too Thai — this includes his speaking abilities — and that he’s losing his Chinese roots. Note that she speaks Thai with a heavy Chinese accent, whereas he just sounds like a normal Thai.

I’ve heard stories of Americans who settle into a different part of the U.S. than where they were born and, without intending to, end up acquiring the local accent. continued…


4 January 2015, TV = 1033.8 hours

I had just finished an all-day bus ride from northern Thailand back to Bangkok and boarded the battered old city bus which would take me from the Mo Chit bus terminal to the BTS skytrain, which I would use to get to my neighborhood. As the bus exited Mo Chit, it dipped violently downward to the accompaniment of a loud scraping sound: metal against pavement. Apparently we’d hit some kind of pothole, or maybe a shallow ditch. And as the bus lurched, I reflexively blurted out continued…

Assorted Thoughts

8 April 2014; AT5 = 1063 hours; total class time = 2001 hours; TV = 714.3 hours

There’s an interesting (in my opinion) conversation going on concerning thinking in foreign languages and the impact that your native language can have on your understanding of, and speaking abilities in, a second language continued…


September 16 2013; AT5 = 1051 hours; total time = 1989 hours; TV = 355.3 hours

At some point after I started learning Thai I noticed that my ability to say things in French was taking a hit. Granted, my French is really rusty – it’s been over 20 years since I’ve used the language for anything more than light / brief conversation, and very infrequently at that. continued…

A Trace Indicator Of Change

12 September 2013; AT5 = 1051 hours; total time = 1989 hours; TV = 352.2 hours

I’m on my first visit home since going to Thailand two and a quarter years ago. I arrived here in the far southeastern corner of the U.S. about 10 days ago, and there really isn’t any Thai here continued…