Ah, it’s a terribly fine line sometimes. A coin toss if you will. A little knowledge can be all you need to get you started, get some forward momentum and learn as you go. Sometimes it’s all the time you have, otherwise you miss the boat.

Then again, it’s not coincidental that we use the phrase ‘enough to be dangerous’.

A couple of decades ago, a friend of a friend of mine went to live with a Spanish-speaking family to improve his basic language skills. In his first week there, they went out to dinner together. The daughter was 17. During the course of the conversation something was said to make her blush. He wanted to ask her if she was embarrassed.

Unfortunately, he didn’t know the Spanish for embarrassed so took a guess. Worse still, his effort – embarazada – means pregnant. Not good. The father went apoplectic and he had to leave the family shortly thereafter.

Knowing enough cuts both ways. Ask yourself this, do you feel lucky? 🙂

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