Picture source: http://grin.hq.nasa.gov/

Monday, January 24, 2011

Getting back on Le Cheval (Learning French Part Three)

To get caught up, make sure to read part one and part two.

Un Cheval
That horse's look shows disappointment. The reason he's disappointed is because last March I stopped studying French. For the first time using this program, I found that I had failed. Rather than try harder, come back to the lesson, and do it again; I let my resolve fall away. I kept telling myself that I was going to pick it back up. I was just taking a break. The break lasted until the end of the summer. It was then that I picked things back up again and tried relearning what I had learned previously. That lasted about a week before I gave up again. It was starting to look like I was never going to follow through on this. French would be just another language in which I could formally introduce myself and then could count to ten. (Others include English, Spanish, and Japanese.)

Ernie wants your help counting his rubber ducky sex toys.
What made me finally get my shit together? Honestly, I was just tired of not succeeding. There was no reason for me give up. I bought the program. I had the training CDs. I more than had the time. I had all the tools to follow through. All I needed was a kick in the butt (or, if you prefer, a kick in the ass). That's what I gave myself.
The Mobius Strip of Ass Kicking
The past couple weeks, I have renewed my dedication to learning French. I've set aside time to study everyday. I've been re-completing old lessons. This week, I will begin the advancement I should have made ten months ago. And I have every intention of finishing. Up until that point, I have every intention of keeping you informed, not only of my progress, but my failures as well. If I don't, I may end up writing a similar post this time next year. And really, who wants that?

Check back for more updates on Tyler's French language exploits. Don't forget to become a fan on Facebook or follow Rename Earth on Twitter.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Back By Unpopular Demand!

Everybody's favorite "Tyler" is back.

For the first post of 2011, I want to share with you some of the things I hope to accomplish. In no particular order:
  • Study for the GRE and/or LSAT
    • All throughout my undergrad I would tell anybody who would listen that I wanted to be a lawyer. Then I graduated and suddenly felt less sure about what I wanted to accomplish with my life. I knew I wanted to continue my education, but I wasn't sure where. For most of 2010, I put off the thought of practice or actual studying. This year, I've decided I'll study for both and see if I get a better feel for which path I want to pursue.
  • Lose weight and get in better shape
    • My health and fitness level took a huge decline the past few years. It began with me drinking more often and exercising less. Then I quit drinking as much and was eating more. Last summer I had to get fitted for a suit and found that I had grown two pants sizes. That was the point where I realized that I had to get my ass in gear. I've started (and stopped) a few different regimens since then, but that was 2010. This new year should have a new, healthier me.
  • Focus more on learning French
    • Clicking on the link above will take you the first post I made about learning French. I was so excited about learning French and was running through the lessons. Then, it got harder. And I found I wasn't having the same level of success that I first experienced. So, I quit. Well, I didn't really quit, but I just wasn't trying. But, there's no reason for me to give up. I knew it was going to be hard. I'm tired of starting things and not finishing them. Learning French is something I'm going to do, dammit.
  • Visit another country
    • This became a goal of mine during my final semester of school. For some reason I never had any interest in going anywhere until it was almost too late. So after I graduated, I started looking at where I could go. A friend of mine suggested Brazil and sold me on the idea. I went and got my passport (which I hadn't had before) and was just about to buy a ticket. Then I realized that if I bought a ticket, I wouldn't be able to pay any bills or rent when I came back. Unfortunately, I went with responsibility instead of the travel decision. I regretted that choice for the rest of 2010. But, new year means new opportunity. I will travel to another country this year! (Probably Brazil, though I'm not ruling out Canada, France, the UK, Australia, or Ireland.) And when I do, this blog will be the place to see pictures of my trip.
  • Write more ficition
    • I took fiction writing classes in school and found myself really enjoying the whole process. I enjoyed it to the point of talking myself into wanting to write a book. I think I have a book in me, but if don't get to that this year, I do have more short stories in me. I want to write more. I've always felt that having a creative outlet is good for the soul. During 2010 I had every intention of writing and didn't get it done often enough. As I've said, though, this is a new year. It's possible I'll put up short pieces or selections of my writing. No promises though.
  • Update "Rename Earth" more often
    • This blog started with no real intentions other than I wanted to have a reason to keep writing after I graduated from school. However, I found that that made it too easy for me to ignore it. So, in order to better satisfy my goal of writing more, I've decided to set aside time specifically for this blog and it's followers (all five of you). The blog will likely continue in the same vein that has been established (movies, books, sports, politics, learning French, and other musings) and it should also have updates on everything else I'm planning to do.
Sounds all plausible right? Let's hope so. 2011, here I come.

Check back often for updates. Also, become a fan on Facebook or follow Rename Earth on Twitter.