Difference between revisions of "Students with language skills"

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[[Joe Hutchinson '06]] was once accused of speaking French from the 18th century
[[Joe Hutchinson '06]] was once accused of speaking French from the 18th century
[[Kathryn Lindsey '07]] speaks decent French.
[http://wso.williams.edu/facebook/view?unix=08sjp Samantha Peterson] is majoring in it, so she probably knows a few phrases.
[http://wso.williams.edu/facebook/view?unix=08sjp Samantha Peterson] is majoring in it, so she probably knows a few phrases.

Revision as of 20:06, July 6, 2006

You don't have to be good at it. Just say what you know.


Sam Doyon '05 Dey terk ur jerbs!

American Sign Language

Emily Flynn '09 has a few really good books on sign language, knows the entire alphabet by heart, can sign and read very very slowly, can swear profusely, and is especially good at signing "cow college." Her deaf friend often makes fun of her.

Bahasa Indonesia

Ronit Bhattacharyya '07 lived in Jakarta for seven years, still has an okay grasp of the language.


Ameeda H. Chowdhury '07

Aroop Mukharji

Auyon Mukharji

Ronit Bhattacharyya '07

Rowena Ahsan

Thunny Khaft learnt from his Bangla friends back in the former Soviet Union


David Rodriguez learned a bit while abroad in Barcelona and completed a phonetic study of it as his final project for LING 111.



Jason Law '06 can get by, but not as well as with Mandarin (though Cantonese was his first language...).

Jing Cao 08's first language

Jessica Chung '07 (Wishes she had Cantonese soap operas to watch.)

Jennifer Sithas transformed her Cantonese into Chinglish.

Timothy Cheng, If there's one essential phrase in Cantonese, it's: "ng ho gai gan ngor!" (My Norweigian roomate can testify) Everything else you can survive without.


Jason Law '06 can get by.

Jing Cao 08's second language.

Jason Ren '08, but only after disgusting losses in Beirut.

Katherine Huang '08

Kim Fassler '06

Kristyn Bretz '06, but only when drunk

Estalyn Marquis has some awesome skills

Lauren Johnson

Lars Enwereuzor Kana Ojukwu '07

Morgan Goodwin

Elizabeth Macek passable

Richard Zhang I'm counting on it to get me a job

Ted Haley '07

Jerry He back in the days ...

Jessie Yu '07


Lingwei Gu '07

Richard Zhang '07 You wish you could speak this exclusive dialect

Jessie Yu '07


Rachel Ko '09


Amy Chin '08, but not really.

Jason Law '06 can understand it almost as well as Cantonese.

Penang Hokkien

Teng Jian Khoo '09 can speak it tolerably, but will not be understood by pretty much everyone on campus.


Heather Casteel '06 (drunkenly)


Jason Leith '03 lived in the Netherlands for a few months, and can tell you what "neuken in de keuken" and "let op zakkenrollers!" means. He had little opportunity to actually speak the language, though, which was probably actually a good thing, as he values the integrity of his velum.


British Accent

Canadian Accent

Chinese Accent

Jing Cao speak Proper Chinese Flavor English

Hong Kong Accent

Timothy Cheng, You can't get much more Hong Kong than this.

Indian Accent

Nirmal Deshpande '07 occasionally speaks with a British-tinged Indian accent, specifically responding "You can make me drink, but you cannot make me get you a beer!" to demands that he wait hand and foot upon someone.
Sean Milano '09 tries to immitate his neighbour upstairs, but fails miserably. He just isn't cool enough.
RHAAAD! '08 Genuine, proper Indian accent!

Japanese Accent

Diana Davis '07 spent a month speaking English with a Japanese accent, so she can still do it very convincingly.

Pittsfield Accent (including, but not limited to, Berkshire County)

Emily Flynn '09 and Kristen Milano '09 grew up in the P-unit as people (I swear to God) seriously call it. They had a mad deece time at THS and PHS, respectively, and were wicked excited to come to Williams. They could often be heard saying "Do it, you won't!", especially on the miniature golf course, at the b. mall, or at ken's bowl. Yee.

Southern Accent

Evelyn Robinson '05 has an occassional native Southern accent so sudden and endearing you'd swear she is joking, but she aint.
Will McClain '09 speaks with a Southern accent on and off during regular conversation (something out of his control), but can speak Mississippian at will.
Wes Johnson '09 somehow doesn't have one.
Walker Matthews '08 has a consistent, strong Georgia drawl, even though he himself can't hear it or most other American accents.

Wisconsin Accent

Katie Montgomery '07 has heard and can imititate an accent so strong that even people from other countries can identify it as "like Fargo."
Samantha Peterson '08 can't speak it that well, but she can make fun of it like no one else.
Cat Vielma '09 hates it, and reminds people that Chicago is universes apart from the rest of the grand ol' Midwest


Teng Jian Khoo '09 speaks this at home, but again would be unintelligible, owing to Manglish's status as virtually another language.


Joe McDonough '06 visited the International Esperanto Museum in Vienna, but by that time he had forgotten most of the Esperanto he had learned in a fit of boredom during Winter Study two years previously.

Brian Kim '09 thinks that, despite its structural flaws, Esperanto is basically the coolest concept ever. Interlingua, however, is prettier.


David Rodriguez used to be much better, but he now inserts random Catalán words in French conversation.

Diana Davis '07 is still pretty good at French.

Katherine Huang '08 took a lit course with Professor Martin and scored well on the SAT II and AP exams, but that doesn't mean her accent isn't atrociously American...

Joe Hutchinson '06 was once accused of speaking French from the 18th century

Kathryn Lindsey '07 speaks decent French.

Samantha Peterson is majoring in it, so she probably knows a few phrases.

Katie Montgomery '07 can, in theory, communicate in French.

Lindsay Long-Waldor '08 has not spoken in a while, but she might still have some skills.

Nela Vukmirovic '08 fourth language in which she has basic skills.

Tosin Adeyanju '08 third language I can kinda speak.

Vlado Nedkov '06 spent last year in Paris. He can say a lot more than 'voulez-vous coucher avec moi, ce soir', althought that phrase comes in handy quite often.

Ikem.T.Joseph after 5 yrs of study can pretty much read and write with good understanding. In terms of speaking, that's a work in progress.

Carl Vos '09 mom is french, and I know a lot, but havn't spoken it in a while. I can get by alright.

Jack Nelson '07 took it for 9 years before getting bored. Now speaks French like a Russian or Norwegian immigrant who speaks no French at all.

Brian Kim '09 owes much of his sanity to the fact that dead French men write better books than most people.


ich wuerde kimis film sehr gern anschauen. machen wir das, ge? und was lustiges fuer euch- wenn ihr jemanden um eine cigarette bitten wollt, sagt mal einfach-"chill mir eine cigarette." ohne scheiss. funktioniert hervorragend. die deutschen...

Steve Hunter '07

Jono Dowse '06

Joe Hutchinson '06 thinks in and sometimes thinks he's German

Kimi Gilbert '06 spent more than a year in Berlin. Hence, she is legitimately badass. Her German skills are unbelievable. And she starred in a Deutsch Schei�e Video. Go figure.

Kat Jong '07 Is currently spending the Year in Munich and can thus speak enough to get by, read books she'd already read in English, and play an entire game of Magic The Gathering.

Vlado Nedkov '06 used to kick ass in German. Unfortunately, he's a sell out and has moved on to romance languages.

Daniel P. Rooney '06 Speaks mean Deutsch. Very creative. Need help writing a german essay about a funny picture? Daniel is your man!

  • Swiss German

Jono Dowse '06 has a German-language textbook on Swiss German and really wants to be able to speak it authentically. At this point, he knows the numbers and some basic vocabulary and grammar. (TAs swoon when he counts to ten.)

Joe Gangestad '06 speaks a mad Munchen Deutsch, and will one day teach astrophysics to unassuming little German children.

Teng Jian Khoo '09 reads children's books in German.

Toby Hall is a German major, and is living in Deutschland during the summer of 2006

Carl Vos '09 is taking German and will be spending the summer of 2006 in Munich and Berlin.



Hazen (As in I can write in it and tell you how to pronounce the letters of their alphabet. I didn't write this.)

Brent Yorgey '04

Math nerds know the Greek alphabet.

So do Classics majors. (And in order. What comes after phi, oh my math and physics friends?) (the "$" comes after "\phi", unless it's on its own line, in which case you'll put "$$")


Joanna Demakis knows some but she dropped out of Greek school after first grade.

Jono Dowse '06 thinks Modern Greek is cool and spent some time in online lessons for it his sophomore year. His study has since lapsed. He knows the order of the Greek alphabet well despite being a math major.

Jim Prevas knows all the bad words.


Robert Streicker '07

Zachary Ulman '06

Danny Fischler '06

Davida Kutscher '03

Elissa Brown '09

Daniel Gross '07


Ameeda H. Chowdhury '07

Ananda V. Burra '07

Nikhar Gaikwad

Rahul Shah

Ridhima Raina

Ronit Bhattacharyya '07

Sandy Nandagopal


is not a language; it is an omnipotent alphabet.

Jono Dowse '06 is to the International Phonetic Alphabet as Al Gore is to the Internet.

David Rodriguez learned the IPA incredibly well as Jono Dowse's (who's Nate Sanders?) student in LING 111

Jason Leith rejects the notion that a velar trill is impossible. It is, however, so ugly a sound that not even languages like Dutch and Danish have adopted it. He uses IPA when indicating pronunciation in his music.


Lucy Cox-Chapman '06 spent a semester in Italy

Katie Josephson '07 is dying in Italian 103

Nela Vukmirovic '08 loooooves Italian 103! It comes like a breeze after all those DIV III classes...

Samantha Peterson '08 is in 101 and discovered she can speak Italian by throwing in vowels here and there while speaking French.

David Rodriguez '06 knows all of the great insults and generally vulgar phrases.


Amanda Van Rhyn now knows how to say "my husband got drunk and hit me."

Diana Davis '07 frequently mutters small phrases in Japanese. People think she is mumbling, becuase they don't understand Japanese. In addition to randomly speaking in Japanese, she also randomly speaks English with an excellent Japanese accent.

Leah Weintraub '06 spent a semester in Japan. Ergo, she probably speaks Japanese.

Charlotte White rocks at Japanese, and is easily distracted by pretty things from Japan. She also says "WTF Japan" rather often. As should we all.

Ebonie Little '07 can karaoke most hit Japanese pop songs...albeit in an unflatteringly squeaky voice. She's also in Japan for a year leveling up on language skills.

Sam Doyon '05 took Japanese for 3 1/2 years at Williams, lived in Tokyo for two months before he was fired, evicted, and kicked out of the country.

Brian Kim '09 took this in high school but now retains little more than the ability to pretend he is speaking Japanese by inserting whatever he wants to say in English between "watashi wa" and "desu."


Dawn Robinson '08 is Korean. She can read and write Konglish, and say, "Hello, my name is Dawn" in Korean. :)

Angela Lee '06 can speak, read and write Korean surprisingly well, even though she emigrated at the age of 6. She also has a (dare I say) encyclopedic knowledge of Korean pop culture.

Ilya Feldsherov '06 can count to 8 in Korean, say "attention," "master," and "bow."

James Kim '08 obviously sucks at Korean, but do get by. Do not be fooled by his genuine Korean features.

Hannah Cho '09 seconds the posting above. dear james, don't be discouraged jae doesn't let miss cho speak korean either

Brian Kim '09 is a disgrace to Koreans everywhere. This is also reflected in his speaking ability. Oh, and he can't spell to save his life.


The Devil knows Latin. So do Joe McDonough '06 and Richard Rodriguez.

A rather cool internet program created by Lee Butterman of Brown University is a text to speech program that will read any latin poetry or verse aloud and give you a decent pronunciation of it. Find it Here


Brian Kim '09 is at once terrified of this language and somehow strangely attracted to it.

Love, the Language of

Marilyn is quite fluent. She lives in Dodd 201 if you need lessons in this language.


Another one on the list of Teng Jian Khoo's lonely languages, although Ronit may be able to get most of it.

Middle Earth (assorted languages)

Laurie Brink was the "official unofficial" translator and pronunciation expert for the NYC area premiere of the Lord of the Rings Symphony, and, as such, can say a variety of things in Quenya, Sindarin, Adûnaic, Rohirric, Khuzdul, and the Black Speech. It also helps that she has, in a certain sense, been speaking Quenya since the day she learned her own name.


Jack Nelson '07 speaks relatively fluently, especially when inebriated on some good ol' Mack Øl, due to an exchange year there before Williams. Continues to delight in the fact that Norwegian includes the words fart, snart, fred and slut which means things entirely different.


Alden Robinson '06 whopat dopo yopou thopink opof thopat?

Sara Beach '06 propetty swopeet, Opalden.

Emily Flynn '09 is very jealous.

Peter Schmidt '08 Sopome gopirl topold mopee thopat yopou hopad topo poput opan "op" opaftoper opevopery coponsoponopant. Thopat opis wopack.

Pig Latin

Seth Brown taught a course on Pig Latin during Winter Study 1997.

Sara Beach '06 isay uentflay.


Jonathan Landsman '05 can say "What's up, sweetheart?"

Jono Dowse '06 knows how to pronounce written Polish and has quite a few audio samples of Polish phrases on his iTunes account courtesy of Peter Ladefoged.



O Marcos Gouvea '05 fala português. E você?


Laurie Brink knows just enough to sing the entirety of "Dragostea din Tei" (a.k.a. the Numa Numa song).

Toby Hall Also knows just enough to sing "Dragostea din Tei"

Andana Streng Born in Romania but speaking a funky kind of Romanian called "ardeleneste" which I mix with English when I'm really tired. And no, I don't like "Dragostea din tei".


Michael Gallagher

Emily Button '07 can say "I've seen more women than you've seen sparrows!"

Ilya Khodosh does an excellent drunk old Russian man impression.

Suzanne C. Walsh '05 can say, "Her breasts are as big as pineapples" and can translate for fiends who lose the ability to speak English and can only speak in Russian while drunk. She is also known to mutter things in Georgian. And we're not talking about, "y'all."

Daniel Gross '07

Anna Tsykalova '08 says that all good things come from Mother Russia.

Sara Beach '06 (a.k.a. Zlaya Antonovna)

Eugene Berson '08 puts the hammer together with sickel.

Ilya Feldsherov '06 can do a Ukrainian accent, but no one would know the difference.

Joe Hutchinson '06 pretends to have a Russian grandma back in the old country

Jack Nelson '07 lived in Siberia for a semester. He thinks. He has largely blocked it from his memory. Has somehow retained the ability to sneer in Russian, but not much else, which, as a major, may prove problematic.

Brian Kim '09 used to beg his Russian teacher for borscht in the middle of the night. It was delicious, by the way.


Monsie Muñoz '09 speaks Mexican Spanish- is slowly adopting a chilanga accent

Alejandro Rodríguez-Prieto '09 also speaks Mexican Spanish- but can speak an even more special subversion- the Chihuahuan accent

Luz M. Gómez '08 speaks paisa Mexican Spanish, can speak "proper spanish" when needed and can do a messed up chilanga accent----oh, and a beatiful Xicana accent

Pablita Santos '07 speaks Mexican Spanish and has a beatiful Chicana accent when slightly intoxicated

David Rodríguez speaks Dominican Spanish to his fellow Dominicans and a more comprehensible Latin American Spanish to others, but often swears like a Spaniard for no good reason.

Jonathan Landsman '05 (budding bachatero)

Alan Cordova '06 - like your high school Spanish teacher.

When traveling in non-Hispanophone countries, Alex Lavy's brother pretends he is from Spain, where he "fights the bools" and "stoodies the art".

Bernard Yaros

Paulette Rodríguez can speak Spanish without consonants (also known as Puerto Rican--similar to Dominican)

Sarah Steege can speak with or without the sexy Spanish lisp.

Cat Vielma can speak spanish with both an American accent and a Chilean accent in the same sentence.

Sara Morrissey can speak Mexican spanish and slang. She improves her accent and dirty word vocabulary after she's downed some tequila.

Julia Brown speaks Ecuadorian Spanish with an American accent.

Ilya Feldsherov '06 with a lisp that offends most Puerto Ricans, despite dropping his "s"s.

Ikem T. Joseph can get by with the few years of study he has but don't ask him to carry a convo, it's for your own good!

Daniel Gerlanc speaks Spanish with a peninsular accent. His accent cannot be traced to any particular country; however, most Spanish-speaking Europeans guess that he's from northern Europe.

Jerry He lo habla

Toby Hall spoke spanish in high school, but he's forgeting it as he learns german.

Julian Mesri speaks "castellano" a form of argentine spanish that uses sh for ll and y, and to many sounds more like italian than spanish... and we use vos- yeah that's right, vos.

Emily Flynn took 6 years, an A.P., & taught it in her hometown to overenthusiastic middleschoolers. Su palabra favorita esta sacapuntas.


Rachel Winch

Sandy Nandagopal


"Pad Thai" is not pronounced with a hard 'a' like in 'paddy', but more closely resembles the 'a' in 'father' (but shorter).

Sarun Peter Tosirisuk has what some might call "non-volitional fluency" (he also just made that term up). Like a Thai person with Broca's aphasia, Peter can understand speech but cannot produce it, for the language is locked away in some deep part of his brain. Also, he doesn't know any words that wouldn't have been said in his house when he was growing up.


Dave Senft can count to four in turkish, and also knows six through eight, and ten.

Marisa Lau spent a semester (Spring 2005) in Turkey so she knows numbers and greetings and maybe a bit more

Ersen Bilgin '06


All these students are fluent in written and spoken Urdu, the national language of Pakistan. Urdu is a unique language adapted from Persian and written in Arabic text, though it sounds identical to Hindi, the national language of India, which is written in Sanskrit script.

Aatif Abbas

S. Waqqas Iftikhar

Uzaib Y. Saya

Ali Moiz

Samreen Kazmi

Murtaza Hussain

S. Kashif Akhtar


Toby Hall speeks yidish-English. "Look at those Goyem kvetching. Now that Morty over there, he's a real Mensch."


Katie Montgomery '07 Oh ya.


Tosin Adeyanju