Sounds like Greek to me

Robert Lawless robert.lawless at
Fri Dec 12 18:21:55 UTC 2008

In high school I thought German was ugly until I lived in Germany and 
had a totally wonderful German girlfriend whispering sweet nothings in 
my ear in German.

Ronald Kephart wrote:
> On 12/12/08 12:05 PM, "Ann Anderson Evans" <annevans123 at> wrote:
>     In Israel the Arabic I heard on the streets was not attractive to
>     my ear, to say the least, rough and guttural. Then one night I
>     heard Arabic poetry being read on the radio.  Talk about rich!
> How do we operationalize value judgements like “rough, guttural, 
> rich?” These kinds of statements are totally subjective, and have no 
> linguistic (i.e., scientific) merit whatsoever. I suspect, though, 
> that maybe what was happening here was that the poetic reading style 
> was probably very different from the typical on the street 
> interaction. I suspect that we might make the same contrasting 
> judgements about street vs. poetic English. Think for example about 
> taxi drivers arguing over a parking space, versus someone reading from 
> Whitman.
> By the way, when I was in high school, I thought Spanish was the gods’ 
> gift to humankind. Beautiful! So much so, that I majored in it as an 
> undergrad. Then, in grad school, I took Aymara and began learning 
> about how the Spanish had oppressed, exploited, and otherwise abused 
> the Aymara and other indigenous peoples in the Andes and elsewhere. 
> Somehow, Spanish didn’t sound so beautiful anymore...
> Ron
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