Tag Archives: 15minaday.com

Two Blogs Collide

Two Blogs Collide
Photo-A-Day #1401

Today started with a very exciting morning of scoring 12 tickets to the Thursday June 25th show for Jimmy Buffett’s Summerzcool Tour. Even Buffett has gone Web 2.0. He’s on Twitter but his tweets are protected, that is no way to be social on a social network. But one thing that is being handled really well is the FaceBook account because every one of the shows in the Summerzcool tour has an event page. Our group is a large one and we shot for Thursday to guarantee (or hopefully guarantee) getting tickets. We got so many. I hope we can find homes for all of them. My best set of tickets were in the 4th section under the covering at the Comcast Center.

After that we packed up and went off to Bryant University. At the university there was a Chinese New Year Celebration. Since I am trying to learn Chinese in 15 Minutes A Day I thought a cultural immersion adventure would be great. I was right, it was pretty fun as there were dancers, martial arts students and singers.

We arrived to a fully packed gym with hundreds of seats. On stage awards were being given out for various reasons including many for service to the Chinese community. The United States Postal Service was also there for an unveiling of the Year of the Ox stamp. I was able to buy three sheets of stamps and I got a free Year of the Ox pin.

Unveiling the Year of the Ox Stamp

I also got some materials from a Chinese Christian Church that I can translate sometime.

The different acts that performed were very talented. There were some dancers like the ones above. The Dance was called Pretty Girls (Sichuan Opera) and was performed by Art Troupe of the High School Affiliated with the Renmin University of China. I edited the photo two ways here is the one with more saturated colors.

More color

Eva absolutely loved the dancers. She was rapt with attention and she also was very friendly. She was waving to everyone, dancing and trying to say hello to all the other kids. I have a bunch of photos from the day under the tag Chinese New Year Celebration.

You might notice that I got some nice shots of people performing. I was glad I brought my Xshot with me because I used my Xshot to take photos above the crowd. I also used the custom timer on my camera to take 10 photos in 5 second bursts and then kept the ones I liked.

Learning Chinese The BenSpark Way

Learning Chinese The BenSpark Way
Photo-A-Day #1375

Every once in a while you hear that someone has a New Year’s Resolution to “learn a foreign language”. Well, that is one of mine but with a twist. To keep me on track I am blogging about it on a daily basis. I ran this idea by a few people online who I respect and admire. They had a few things to say about it. They said mostly that I should try and learn a language. However one said that a blog about learning a foreign language, specifically Chinese was too niche and really wouldn’t be of value to anyone and that I should incorporate that into this blog somehow.

Now I could have packed up shop right then and there seeing as I was only 11 days into the experiment. But I decided that, no, this blog isn’t about that part of my life and I made a commitment to see it through. So, I am going to continue to blog about my experiment to learn Chinese in 15 minutes a day at my newest blog 15minaday.com. It has been a really interesting project so far and I’m not doing it to generate money but to learn something totally new. The more I started looking for resources for learning Chinese the more I found tons of them. I think that when the experiment is finished there will be a wealth of value for someone who wants to go about learning Chinese because I will have gone through many different resources that are available and let you know which are good and which are not. I wouldn’t mind generating a little income either so I do have amazon affiliate links on the site in case anyone wants to buy the books I’m using in this experiment.

The resources I am are finding consist or websites, blogs, podcasts, books and audiobooks. Many resources are totally free and have tons of info. I’ve made a few purchases to get started and ultimately I want to use Rosetta Stone but it is a bit expensive. The other day I even used the fortunes from our fortune cookies as a learning project.

I’ve learned a few things about this project.

  1. When a project is new it is fun and exciting.
  2. It takes a while to see the big picture (I haven’t even seen the little one yet)
  3. Learning something new takes time (for me, more than 15 minutes a day)
  4. You can respect someone and still disagree with them.
  5. Breaking a project down to small parts that are manageable allows you to get them done.