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All About Series #1—Top 5 Reasons to Study Dutch
All about Dutch
(Lead in theme song)
Mies: Welcome to DutchPod101.com. All About Dutch lesson 1. Top 5 Reasons to Study Dutch. Ik heet Mies. I’m Mies, your friendly neighborhood non-Dutch guide to everything Dutch…
Jacob: And I’m here in this lesson to bare a part of my Dutch soul with you!
Mies: That’s right, this lesson is all about your home and native land, Jacob
Jacob: And yours too, Mies!
Mies: Yeah, I’m sort of more a wanna-be Dutch person.
Jacob: Don’t worry, we’ll let you be.
Mies: Yeah, but there are so many Dutch people already, can you really afford to add honorary members?
Jacob: (laughs) Hmm, I guess there should be some kind of initiation rite of passage at least.
Mies: Yeah, like walking in clogs or something.
Jacob: Haha, yeah!
Mies: Okay, well that does it for me; no way I can get in.
Jacob: Well, fortunately you can speak Dutch, so you can impersonate a Dutch person anyway.
Mies: Yeah, Dutch can sound pretty guttural.
Jacob: You are right , but it’s a beautiful language
(sound effect – sound of noisy Dutch restaurant chatter)
[Linguistics section]
Jacob: What is it about this language, anyway?
Mies: Dutch is a Germanic language and and it started to distinguish itself from German around AD 600
Jacob: WOW! I wonder what it sounded like back then.
Mies: Well listen: “hebban olla vogala nestas bigunnan hinase ic ende thu uuat unbidan uue nu”
Jacob: Wow! what was that ?
Mies: Well this might be the oldest written down text from the 11th century
Jacob: So what does it mean?
Mies: It means: “all the birds have started making their nests, except for you and I: so what are we waiting for?”
Jacob: Ha ha yeah…what are we waiting for.
Mies: These days there are approximately 23 million Dutch speakers all over the world.
Jacob: Dutch is everywhere!
Jacob: : So how come we can hear Dutch around the world?
Mies : Well, that is mainly a result of many Dutch explorers, like Abel Tasman who discovered New Zealand in 1642.
Jacob: Oh right and places like South Africa and the Dutch Antilles were colonized by the Dutch.
Mies: Right, so, did you know that Suriname also has Dutch as the official language?
Jacob: Um, yes I think I knew.
Mies: Also in more recent history, especially after the second world war a lot of Dutch people immigrated to Canada, the USA and Australia.
Jacob: I have an aunt who moved to Canada in the 1950’s. Her Dutch sounds so funny now, it's a mix of Dutch and English.
Mies: Well your aunt might sound funny but there are a lot foreign words in standard Dutch anyway.
Jacob: Dutch.. it seems to be a melting pot of different languages!
Mies: Exactly. One percent of English vocabulary is estimated to be of Dutch origin, like “cookie” comes from the Dutch “koekje”.
Jacob: Wow, Yeah and I hear many of the Dutch words are from French origin.
Mies: Yes, We say “paraplu” for umbrella, it comes from the French “parapluie”, or the French and Dutch both say “trottoir” for sidewalk.
Jacob: That sounds nice!
Mies: Like the English language in the United Kindom, Dutch has many dialects.
Jacob: In most big cities Standard Dutch is spoken, but if you go into the countryside you can find some strong dialects.
Mies: Yeah it’s amazing how different the language can sound even if the distance between is only about 10 km.
Jacob: But the good thing for our Dutch students is that even though people might speak a strong Dutch dialect practically everyone can speak Standard Dutch too.
Mies: Great!
Reasons to learn Dutch
(sound effect of that rap song that says: ‘Y’all gotta go learn Dutch’)
Mies: Who can resist the lure of Dutch?
Okay, top five list!
Jacob: The top five reasons to learn this lovely language!!!
Mies: Number five.
Jacob: You can travel to more places and use your Dutch then you would expect at first. Suriname, South Africa, Aruba, Bonaire, Curacao and yeah even in Belgium they speak Dutch.
Mies: Number four.
Jacob: When you speak Dutch it will be much easier to bond with locals. Especially if you want to experience the real Holland and get off the beaten track. Speaking Dutch will help you tremendously. It will definitely help you get some friends in the local pub.
Mies: Number three.
Jacob: By learning Dutch, you can get a deeper understanding of European history and culture!
Mies: Number two.
Jacob: Knowing Dutch will help you learn other European languages such as German, French and English, without having to cheat on the tests!
Mies: And…the number one reason you should learn Dutch.
(drum roll sound effect)
Jacob: Its fun!! It really is !
Mies: You are absolutely right. It’s all about having a good time with the language. !
Jacob: Yes, it is. Okay, everybody, you know what to do now. Fire up your computer, grab your iPod and suit up with DutchPod101.com for some Dutch lessons you can’t miss.
Mies: See you next time!
Jacob: Bye bye! Doei!