I like a lot of language aficionados online, but there are three that I find deserve special attention, due to the work they put into the community through their writing, videos, websites ect. I find each one to be a varying degree of interesting, entertaining, approachable or normal. To anyone who dips in on the language learning community’s blogs and youtube channels will be familiar with this group. I hit the extremes of agreement and disagreement with each of them, but I’m a friendly polemicist that long ago realized if I only hung out or was interested in people that agreed with me fully, I’d have zero friends and would have to live as a hermit. These polyglots also disagree with each other, sometimes at high volume and sometimes only in the nuances that an attentive listener can catch.
This post though isn’t about opinions or disagreements on methodology, or anything else controversial, as much as I love that stuff. It’s simply about great everyday people who love to learn languages, and loving languages is something that almost no one reading this post can argue with.
I’ve included videos that I feel most represent the traits I like most about each of the following bloggers. So in no particular order:
Moses, who is better known by his youtube name Laoshu505000, is a video making machine and language boot camp specialist. He attacks languages with a fury about three months at a time. He takes them on in an academically focused way that most of us only wish we had the patience to to handle. He is the epitome of regular middle class guy learning languages. He’s married, he has an everyday middle class job, he’s not really a big world traveler. He just loves acquiring language after language.
This following video is an example of his passion, I only regret that he’s not wearing his signature fishing hat during it. Don’t get used to the Moses without the headgear:
Next up is Steve Kaufmann, probably the internet polyglot I’m most familiar with, who’d I’d definitely meet-up with if he ever found himself in Vegas, although I’d let him visit the brothels on his own. I know him mostly from exchanges on his blog and the Lingq.com website. Steve and I have similar trait in common of being intensely polemical. It’s one of my favorite things about his videos and blog posts. I don’t want to put words in his mouth, but I think I’d sum it up if I said that we believe what we believe and we’ll defend it (in order to strengthen the belief or adjust it to new truths). I’m pretty sure in both of our cases we could be convinced of a different view, but it’s up to the facts and opponent’s presentation.
Steve knows about twelve languages to varying degrees, he goes on runs of making videos and then on separate inactivity runs on that front. As of late his blog has been an education blog as much as it has been a language learning blog. Steve is especially great because he’s knowledgeable in a variety of subjects, he’s a retired successful business owner and he’s always interested in discussion with both those who agree and disagree with him. Just be careful not to curse on his blog…. on this site don’t worry about it so much.. I collect all words. 🙂
Here’s Steve going on one of the little input rants he’s famous for, interesting stuff:
Third and certainly not least of all is Benny Lewis, or better known as Benny the Irish Polyglot. Benny is simple, his name is Benny, he’s Irish, and he’s a polyglot. Benny seems like a fun and entertaining guy, despite the fact that he doesn’t eat dead animals or drink the luscious juice that his Irish forefathers (who I’m forever indebted to) had a hand in creating (eating animals and drinking “luscious juice” being my second and third favorite things to do, behind writing).
Benny has been in Vegas, and we were supposed to meet up, but a mixture of my studies and Benny falling off the wagon and learning of the joys of dollar beer at the cheap casinos and doing illegal substances off illicit body parts of irresponsible women (mom!!), we didn’t meet up unfortunately.
Benny is most admirable for his love of people, as you can see in the videos his goal is to travel, meet people and have loads of his version of “fun”. And he picks up large amounts of the local language along the way.
Another fun thing about Benny, is that he comes from a technical background, so his videos have a pretty high production value and a sort of “corny to be funny” quality as can be seen here:
If you don’t think that’s hilarious then… your parents didn’t do drugs while they were pregnant with you… (loser).
Well here are three wonderful learners and teachers by example of language learning. They all have their own method and ways of assimilating language and living life. Any one of them, or all three could help you waste time with their ideas and antics, of course that’d be a bad thing…