I started learning Spanish seriously in August 2017. I had been assiduously Duolingo-ing up until that point, and after hours and hours of it, this was the extent of my spoken ability:
After graduating from uni, I spent about a year and a half after uni pursuing writing projects, with the naïve goal of becoming a full-time romance writer within a short span of time. As you can imagine, this didn't quite work out, and I eventually decided that, for the short term, I needed a day job.
‘Parlay petty fronsay,’ said my colleague, as he jocularly replied to the French teacher at our school upon exiting the staff room. No sooner had the door swung shut than one of the teachers roared, ‘He's butchering the language!’ Of course, this was a joke. But there's something about that phrase that aggravates me. The idea that language is some kind of sacred cow, some unassailable bastion of purity that must not be sullied by the butcher's knives of the linguistic proletariat.