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Language: French or Spanish?

  1. Aug 29, 2011 #1
    I'm interested in learning a new language simply for the sake of knowing one apart from English. I've heard much about French and Spanish, but cannot choose which one to learn.

    I'm guessing that Spanish would be more useful in the US seeing that there are so many who speak it. I'm tempted to learn French simply to read the original Asterix comics (I LOVE these!). From a practical point of view, it looks like Spanish, but here is the clincher:

    Which ones do the babes dig more? :biggrin:

    This will be the deciding factor.

    Please and Thank you.
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 29, 2011 #2


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    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor

    Learn both.
  4. Aug 29, 2011 #3


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    Staff: Mentor

    French is associated with being a more refined, cultured language and sounds beautiful.
  5. Aug 29, 2011 #4
  6. Aug 29, 2011 #5


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    Staff: Mentor

    Provided you get the accent right! :wink:

    Actually, if you can manage to learn to speak English with a good French accent, that would probably work almost as well in impressing babes. :biggrin:
  7. Aug 29, 2011 #6
    If you want to attract the babes in my neighborhood you'd better learn English.
  8. Aug 29, 2011 #7
    Learn French with a Quebec accent. The chicks will drop like flies. Trust me.
  9. Aug 29, 2011 #8
    I would love to go ahead and learn both, but unfortunately, I am pressed for time. Maybe I shall do so some time in the future.

    I did even consider German because I've been told it's similar to English. However, it sounds clunky and has these gutteral noises which would probably scare people away. For instance. when they pronounce "rauchen". The 'r' and the 'ch' are from the depths of your throat. Sounds so odd.

  10. Aug 29, 2011 #9
    I say French so you can pick up some nice dates. Who's really gonna want to date someone who just speaks Spanish.
  11. Aug 29, 2011 #10
  12. Aug 29, 2011 #11
    I speak Spanish to God, Italian to women, French to men, and German to my horse. --Charles V
  13. Aug 29, 2011 #12
    I spent time learning French, Spanish and German. What I found was that it was a lot of fun when I had someone who was fluent in the language I was learning that I could talk to. But when I didn't have anyone to speak the language with, it was no fun to continue studying it. So my advice is to pick the language that you can practice and converse with people around you in. If you live in the western U.S. like me, that's probably Spanish.
  14. Aug 29, 2011 #13
    I took French in college. It was really nice to hear a guy speak French poetry to me in language lab. By the way, I am a girl--I chose lenell because it was on a cookie tin next to me when I signed up.
  15. Aug 29, 2011 #14


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    Staff: Mentor

    Welcome to the forum lenell!! We all have stories about our names, and they're not all good. :biggrin:

    I'm partial to hearing a certain member here speak French in a very deep, sultry voice.

    I'm suprised my phone didn't melt. :tongue2:
  16. Aug 29, 2011 #15
    I'd have to give this a +1.
  17. Aug 29, 2011 #16
    I've told this story before, but here goes again. I was out one evening in Nazereth, Israel with a young lady from Turkey. We were stopped by a police officer who asked us what we were doing. Neither of us spoke Hebrew well enough to converse with him and he asked if we spoke French. She did and so she told him something like 'Nous en fait une promenade" (someone who speaks French can fix that up for me). It struck me as a very romantic way to say "We're taking a walk."
  18. Aug 30, 2011 #17
    Gosh! Nearly everyone here is leaning towards French.

    I'll be learning along with a friend of mine, so we'd converse with each other. We could find some place where we could talk to people who already know the language. Indeed, that is a good suggestion.
  19. Aug 30, 2011 #18
    French is a great language to learn. I'm currently in the process of learning it. I'd recommend French.
  20. Aug 30, 2011 #19
    If you want to attract women, learn Italian. Women love well spoken Italian. It also helps if you drive a Ferrari.
  21. Aug 30, 2011 #20
    With a Ferrari you can skip learning Italian.
  22. Aug 30, 2011 #21
    Probably true, but if you are young and can speak Italian well, you might appear more likely to belong in a Ferrari (as opposed to being an errant parking valet joyriding while the owner is gambling in the casino.)
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2011
  23. Aug 30, 2011 #22
    Maybe you could learn a dozen words and phrases in both and observe which ones you turn to in your thoughts throughout a period of time (days/weeks/however long you have).
  24. Aug 30, 2011 #23
    So your desire to learn another language is not solely for the sake of knowing one apart from English but to attract the babes. The consensus seems to be that French will make you more attractive to the babes but possibly any babe that would be impressed by a few french phrases mixed in a conversation wouldn't be worth your time. Evo, would you be impressed by someone who threw out a few french phrases or even by someone who could order a meal in French?

    I learned Spanish while living in the U.S. During the time I was learning, I only listened to Spanish language radio and only watched television in Spanish. Doing this everyday helps develop an ear for the language. It helps develop the rhythm of speech and the accent and even teaches you common slang that they won't teach you in class. I think in most places in the U.S. this would be difficult to do with French. Furthermore, I think Spanish is easier to learn from English than French. Spanish pronunciation is closer to English.

    You should also take night courses where you can ask questions of the instructor. Many times I ran into usage I could not understand and needed someone to explain it to me. For example, if in Spanish you say, "Substitute A for B." it means use B in place of A.

    Lastly, learning a foreign language well while living in the U.S. and associating only with English speakers is much, much harder than any of the courses would have you believe. It will be very difficult not to lose interest when it seems you aren't making any progress.
  25. Aug 30, 2011 #24


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    Staff: Mentor

    If it's between Spanish and French, yeah, I'd be more impressed by a knowledge of French. French, Spanish and Italian are all very similar. But French is lilting, and soft, and elegant, Italian is second, Spanish, of the three, is third.

    Having been born and raised in Houston, TX, I had to learn Spanish, perhaps that is why it does nothing for me.

    As far as business, if you plan to work in the southern part of the US, you should learn Spanish. If you plan to work in the northern US or internationally, French and English are your best bets.
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2011
  26. Aug 31, 2011 #25
    Communicate either with several hundred million spread across the world or a billion focused in two places. I'd pick (and picked up :P... the subtle pun you see there is, sadly, not applicable to me :P:P) the latter, you might prefer the former. However, why not challenge yourself and pick up Japanese? I think it fits your sole requirement perfectly!
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