Starting from Scratch, or Why Failure’s not Always Bad


It’s me again, and it’s been a crazy past year. My son, Alrick, has been in the hospital 3 times since he’s been born (a year ago) for brain surgery, and our family is planning a move to Denver, Colorado on the 19th. So yeah.

I’ve fallen of the wagon several times. It’s not always great, but sometimes life just gets the best of you. The SRS cards start piling up, and after a few days, you just want to totally stop trying to learn and grow. It’s not good times.

However, there are actually some things I’ve been able to take away from this hiatus.

1. Do NOT count the amount of time you’ve been studying Japanese or anything by the years.

It’s just a bad idea. Those years are absolutely lying to you, and honestly, saying it is kind of a lie in and of it’s own.

Like me. I’ve been “studying” Japanese for around 8 years now. However, I actually haven’t. If I could actually tally up the amount of time I have been studying and immersed, it would probably be closer to a year and a half at most. So, yeah. I feel a lot less terrible and honest when I say that I’ve been studying for a year and a half than saying I’ve been studying for 8 years.

2. Just because you fell off doesn’t mean that you can’t get back up.

Do you want to learn Japanese? (Or whatever it is that you want to learn) Then be like an addict. It’s a terrible thing, but they are pretty awesome as a role model in this situation.

I’ve been trying to quit smoking for several years now. I’ve just come to the conclusion that I really enjoy smoking, and that I’m addicted to cigarettes. I don’t think about how many cigarettes I’m smoking in a day, I just smoke when I feel like it. Even if you fall off, if you get back up as soon as you can and treat your SRS reps like a cigarette (Or chocolate, or whatever.) then you’ll be better than wallowing in the fact that you can’t seem to get motivated to actually do anything in Japanese.

Come on, it’s just one more…

I suppose what I was wanting to say with this blog post is that I am back on, and I hope that I can help some people with staying on track. I also have some cool freebies planned for the near future, assuming I can finally get some damn time to do them. But here’s a preview:

1. A 1000 J-E Sentence Pack, culled from my personal collection of random things.
2. A program to help keep you on track, and to record your improvements
3. Something else equally awesome, but much less planned out.

So I hope to talk to you guys again soon, and as always:



How I Use Facebook for Learning Japanese

Yo, Brent here.

Sorry it’s been a while since I’ve updated, been busy. Finally got a job, and standing for 8 hours straight sucks a lot more than I remember…

Anyway, I found a really awesome post by Chris Brogan, and I finally have something new to write about. If you want to have an idea of the next post, I’m going to eventually write most, if not all of those posts.

So, let me tell you ways I use Facebook to learn Japanese. Now, there are a lot of good ways to do it if you don’t mind friending complete strangers lol

First, I use the Find Friends link, and pick a city in Japan (Osaka is pretty gdlk, but I like Osakans lol)

Then, I go through people who’s picture interest me, and I look at the things they like. If we share interests, I’ll send a friend request, and then I can see their wall (Although, a lot of people don’t have their walls protected)

Then I just chat with people. It’s a really good way to make some new friends, and also a way to get some exposure on your (probably English-dominated!) Facebook wall. I mean, if you have to use social media (And you know I do!) then you may as well use it to learn Japanese too.

Another source of easy Japanese immersion is just simply Japanese pages. It’s much better for people who are still wary about friending random people. You still need to search people, but if you see a page they like in Japanese, you can just like that page, and BAM! +1 right there.

Also, in a semi-related aside, I really can’t wait until I get my Google+ invite. It looks amazing.

Anyway, try and get creative, and tell me ways you use Facebook (and other social media) to your advantage to learn Japanese.

P.S. Your Facebook account is in Japanese right?


I know I said I don’t follow the leader, but if donations are the only way for me to get video games and blow, then dammit I’m gonna try. Click the little button below, you know you want to…