Girls vs guys and the dancing-monkey reason to learn a language


There are many wholesome reasons to learn and use languages. Mine are cultural to enhance my travel and social experiences. Some people learn to understand their heritage, to be able to better appreciate music and literature, and some are passionate simply about languages in themselves and what makes them up and how they work. Others […]


April Fools’ post – Benny’s Confession


[Before I put April Fools’ in the title of this post, quite a lot of people were falling for it! Rest assured that nothing here is true ] I am writing this post with a heavy heart, but the lies must end. I can’t do this any longer – the guilt is tearing me apart! […]


Happy Paddy’s day!


Public service announcement: To all American readers, please call this day Paddy’s day and not Patty‘s (or Patti‘s) day. Say the original St. Patrick’s Day or use the Irish nickname with d’s. We spell it with d’s instead of t’s because it’s based on the Irish version of the name Pádraig. We aren’t celebrating burgers […]


Benny’s 2010: A video summary (& singing in Spanish)


What a year! I’ve already summarised my favourite blog posts of the year, but I think the year is best summarised in video! So in this video I have edited together my favourite moments of the year, most fun things I’ve done and most importantly, the amazing people that I’ve met. People are after all, […]


Happy holidays and best posts of the year


Since I’m home in Cavan, Ireland and would rather be doing things with family this week, I’ll take the time off blogging and leave this “best of” post up for the next week. I’m not sure when I’ll be home again, since I have a lot planned for 2011 so I want to make the […]


Videos: Baker, David Walsh & Cody McKibb interview Benny


Baker over at ManVsDebt has just uploaded a video interview with me that summarises some of my philosophies and strategies in language learning. I had the pleasure to do this interview with him in Thailand, and we discussed some aspects of language learning that I write about on this site, for almost 40 minutes! Some […]


Why learning a language is like learning a musical instrument


Here I am, at the starting stages of speaking a language once again, and I’m reminded of how it felt taking a similar first step into playing the piano and other instruments I’ve learned. Since my feelings would likely be shared by others, I asked my friends on twitter how learning a language is like […]


Friday fun: Learning Na’vi for your Avatar


Preface Na’vi is the language spoken by the fictional aliens in the currently very popular movie Avatar. Even though it’s “just a movie”, Na’vi is an “actual” (constructed) language. It has vocabulary and grammar and was developed by linguist Paul Frommer. He’s hoping it will become the new “Klingon” of movie languages. Since the whole […]


Results of survey and planned changes to the blog


[No language/travel tips here; just a summary of the survey results and plans for the website next year] Last week I requested that a few of you fill out a survey to help me improve this site for next year; I was expecting perhaps a few dozen responses at best, but I’ve actually gotten 130!! […]