Archive for the ‘Russian Power Phrases’ category

Russian word for Map

August 17th, 2009

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Power Phrases Lesson #28
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You might be thinking, “Why would I want a map? I can’t read Russian.”

Well, that just means you haven’t watched my How To Read Russian videos. The great thing about learning to read Russian — aside from the ability to read maps –is that so many signs are simply English words written using the Cyrillic alphabet.

Aside from the obvious use of maps, they have surprising side benefit: People approach you offering to help! And usually, since they know you’re a foreigner, they’ll actually speak to you in English. And if the person happens to be an attractive member of the opposite sex, so much the better, yes? So watch this video, learn How to say ‘map’ in Russian, and go out and buy one once you’re there. Who knows where it will lead you!

27a On Foot Review

August 17th, 2009

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Power Phrases Lesson #1
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We covered how to say “on foot” in Russian in a previous lesson. This is a really handy one so lets go over it one more time. Do you remember? If not, take a look at the video.

27b Airport Review

August 17th, 2009

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Power Phrases Lesson #27b
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You might only use the word airport once during your whole trip to Russia or Ukraine, but it’s useful to know. After all, if the taxi driver somehow doesn’t understand the English version of the word — and it’s more or a less a cognate — that’d be problematic. More likely, by him hearing your English version, he’d be tempted to suddenly jack up his price. But say the word ‘airport’ properly in Russian the driver will be more apt to assume you kow what your doing, and you know what taxi rides should cost.

Heck, this blog could save you some money!

How to say Good Job Well Done in Russian

August 17th, 2009

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Power Phrases Lesson #27
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There’s a good reason for knowing how to say ‘Good job’ or ‘well done’ in Russian: You’re going to hear it a lot. The fact that you know Russian will earn you the praise of ‘molodyets’ numerous times. But any job well done will ellicit it. Cook a good meal for someone, or bowl a strike at the bowlling alley, make a nice photo…molodyets, molodyets!

If you want to make it a bit more personal, you can add the word you or he or she. In other words, Good job, you! Or, She did a great job!

Ti molodyets! = You did a great job!

On (sounds like ‘own’) molodyets = He did a great job!

Ona (pronounced ‘ahNAH’) molodyets! = She did a great job!

If you can give praise like this on the spot, you’ll win a lot of friends in Russia or Ukraine!

Molodyets indeed!

26b Review Excuse Me.. and more..

August 17th, 2009

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Power Phrases Lesson #26b
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Excuse me.. the museum.. is it far? Can you say that in Russian. If you’re not sure take a look at the video where I cover them one more time, and then try: Excuse me, is the airport far?

26a Review Russian for Here

August 17th, 2009

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Power Phrases Lesson #26a
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Here it is.. the review lesson for the word Here in Russian.

Let’s Go in Russian: Poshli

August 17th, 2009

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Power Phrases Lesson #26
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Strangely, ‘poshli’ (which means ‘let’s go’ or ‘let’s head out’ in Russian) is actually the past tense of the verb meaning “To head off on foot.” In other words, ‘poshli’ literally means, “We (or they) headed off on foot.” How can a word which is in the past tense indicate the desire to head off somewhere now?

Literal translations are often strange, until you fill in what must be the missing words. Here, for example, the missing words must be something like: “I want us to do what must be done so that we will have ‘headed off on foot.’”

We do this all the time, after all, in English. For example, when you are talking about eating and say, “I feel like a hamburger,” (which could easily be taken as a strange thing to say), we understand that the missing word is, “having”, as in, “I feel like HAVING a hamburger.”

Still, it’s important to translate things as literally as possible. Yes, it’s good to know that ‘poshli’ is the *equivalent* of the English phrase, “Let’s go!” but it’s also vital to know that, super-literally, it means, “We/They headed off on foot.” Otherwise, future phrases with the word ‘poshli’ won’t make much sense if understood only as ‘Let’s go.’ (Did they poshli, or go in a car?)

So, on your flashcards, try writing the super-literal meaning as well. It’s a bit more work, but very beneficial in the long run.

Good luck!