The BEST Guide to POLAND
Unanswered  |  Archives 
User: Guest

Posts by Antek_Stalich  

Joined: 6 May 2011 / Male ♂
Last Post: 24 Jun 2011
Threads: 5
Posts: 997
From: Poland, Brwinów
Speaks Polish?: Native speaker
Interests: Making music, photography

Displayed posts: 1002 / page 5 of 34
sort: Latest first   Oldest first   |
15 Jun 2011
Language / Ukrainian language similar to Polish? [236]

isn't it unique in Europe to have so many people able to use both languages interchangably?

Belgium? ;-)
Delph, I am sure I could think of several European countries or regions like that, only my mind does not work well today. How about Tirol in Italy, where people speak both German and Italian fluently everyday? I was there, I know, been working for tips at the petrol station of my Tirolese cousin uncle as a teen ;-)

I do not think a Ukrainian is bilingual. The Ukrainian speaks either Russian or Ukrainian or a mix.

What about Polish Silesia where a Silesian speaks pure Polish outdoor and pure Silesian indoor? ;) What about Beskyd highlander who speaks pure Czech at work, pure Polish after crossing the border with Poland, and his local lingo while drinking beer with neighbours?
15 Jun 2011
Language / Czech language sounds like baby talk to most Poles. Similarities? [222]

jwojcie, if you had been travelling to the Czech Republic often and used or at least listened to Czech, you'd discover the language is not funny at all. It is just another language. No-one can decree the kind of sense of humour, yet I could describe yours as quite childish.

In the general terms, neighbouring nations, those who had some trouble with each other in the past but not really bloody history behind, typically jeer at each other, saying very specific type of jokes. Take Norway and Sweden. Sweden let Norway create their own country peacefully in 1905, Norway being a Swedish province before. So Swedes and Norwegian let is happen easy and today they say such a joke:

Swede on Norwegian joke:
-- Do you know why the Norwegian look out their windows during thunderstorm? Because they think photographs are taken with flashlight! Ha ha ha!

A Norwegian on Swedish joke:
-- Do you know why the Swedish look out their windows during thunderstorm? Because they think photographs are taken with flashlight! Ha ha ha!

This is about the same sense of humour as you display, jwojcie. The joke as above is believed to be VERY funny.
The modern Czech and the Nynorsk (the new Norwegian language) share similar history. The Bokmaal Norwegian (Literary Norwegian, the traditional language) is in fact Danish made easy to speak by Norwegians. In the beginning of 20th c., Norwegian revivalists thought it would be a good idea to create a new language to get rid of the unwanted past. Therefore, they did the work exactly as the Czech revivalist had done, by picking up words from any goddam small fjord where local dialect was spoken. As the result, Nynorsk is about one of the funniest languages because -- by comparison -- it would sound as Polish would sound if Polish was made ONLY from dialects: Mazovian, Warmian, Silesian, Greater Polish, Pomeranian, Kashubian, etc. etc. and only from countryside dialects. You would lol'led until you die if you heard something like that. However, Norwegians did it and started teaching school children Nynorsk. Result? Educated Norwegian speak Bokmaal, local people speak their local dialects, and Nynorsk was formally abandoned from teaching not so long time ago. Nothing strange. Bokmaal name for Norway is 'Norge". Nynorsk word for the same is... Noreg.

So, yes, Czech may sound funny to you as a collection of local dialects and ANCIENT Slavic words. If you laugh at laska, you indeed should perceive the word łaska funny, too. (mafketis, of course you are right, Czech was not taken from Mars).
15 Jun 2011
Language / Czech language sounds like baby talk to most Poles. Similarities? [222]

ok, my Russian is a little rusty, but I do remember that "what day is it today?" is "kakoje sjewodnia cislo?"

Strzyga, this indeed is a number question, cf. "Którego dziś mamy?" = "What the day of the month is it today?". You are normally not asking "What year date is it today?", right?

It is not surprisng, I know a Polish girl who learned Czech and she said she lost it to, but she said it was worth it anyway, because it is great language and culture - and I concure with that!

I will only tell you Czech sounds funny to you because it is a foreign language. Yes, it is quite different language from Polish, and you simply sound funny to me by saying the above. As I said, Polish sounds boorish, ill-educated, "chamski" language to Czech speakers. Well, people like jokes on small animals, including profanity and jeering at obese people, too.
15 Jun 2011
Language / Czech language sounds like baby talk to most Poles. Similarities? [222]

Antek_Stalich: No. It means "number" in Russian.
Date too.

The word is "data" in the first place, and dyen' in the second place.

Strzyga, as much as I love you, I keep a Russian contract opened here ;)
"Data vstuplyenya v silu" ;-) (effective date)
15 Jun 2011
Language / Czech language sounds like baby talk to most Poles. Similarities? [222]

no. It means "date" in Russian, I can't recall any similar Polish word.

No. It means "number" in Russian. Same in Czech "èíslo". Nothing like that in Polish. We say "numer" for number and "liczba" for count. "Count of" is schtschyot in Russian and 'souèet" in Czech, "liczba" in Polish.

I use to give technical training to Czech companies. Very often, they ask me if we could have the training in Polish because "they watch Polish TV and understand every word". Then I tell tham that:

Pl. temperatura, Cz. teplota (temperature)
Pl. ciśnienie, Cz. tlak (pressure)
Pl. przepływ, Cz. prutok (flow rate)
Pl. gęstość, Cz. hustota (density)
Pl. lepkość, Cz. viskozita (viscosity)
Pl. azot, Cz. dusik (nitrogen)
Pl. orurowanie, Cz. potrubi (piping)
After 2 minutes of my talking they agree to have an English training ;-)
15 Jun 2011
Language / Czech language sounds like baby talk to most Poles. Similarities? [222]

You said a wrong story about "similarity" of Czech and Polish languages. These languages are not similar -- they are very different because of the history of the modern Czech language that was created the way not resemble Polish. Any conscious and honest person would say "I'm sorry, I did not know all the facts".

mafketis, it is ordinary people who speak languages, not linguists. If you tried to tell your Polish gf "zrób mi tę laskę" in the sense laska = łaska = love, she would slap your face unless both of you already were in intimate situation. I can assure you that asking for "łagiew" of any drink would made no results in a Polish shop, and asking for "gorzoła" up north of Katowice brings the inevitable question: "A, pan ze Śląska?!" (You are a Silesian, aren't you).

A friend told me how his Silesian aunt went in Okęcie Airport and asked for some flowers at the florist. I cannot repeat what that Aunt said (she spoke pure Silesian) but the florist asked her if "Aunt" were Silesian. The Aunt was totally surprised and asked: "Jak Pani to zgadła?" (How did you guess that?). You should listen to the original story...
15 Jun 2011
History / What was it like in 1989+ in Poland when the Soviet house of cards fell? [237]

Well, I was there, with my camera (except one picture). Memories dry out. Pictures, and especially back-notes stay.

I will tell you two stories though, since I think they might be at least funny a little bit.

In December 1981, as described above, I was on strike at Politechnika Warszawska, and all Warsaw Universities were on strike, too. I was asked by our Committee to go to the Firefighting Academy to eye-witness events there (some pictures remained). The firefighters were, technically, Cadets and they basically should not go on strike. Their Academy got surrounded by the riot police and a crowd there was awaiting new events. The students there sang "Obława" (The Hunt Chase), a song by Jacek Kaczmarski.

I was there taking pictures with my Start 66S, which was a medium-format, double-lens reflex camera, not small. After taking some pictures of policemen, the police invited me to a police-car for interrogation. I was sure the camera would be opened and the film overexposed. One of policemen asked me if I was aware of my misdeed, taking illegal photos. Then my brain started working very fast. Before those events, I had read the Penal Code because I was interested in the risk level. And I answered calmly: "According to Section this-and-that, Paragraph such-and-such, it is forbidden to take pictures of military, railway, ........., objects. However, the Paragraph does not mention the police action". The guy was shattered. He handed my intact camera back to me and told me to leave, fast! ;-) Of course, I told him a total lie! Given Paragraph definitely forbid taking pictures of police action ;-) However, I had made the impression I had known the law better than him, so he was not taking any risk to call my cards ;-)

In all fairness, Radio Free Europe used to broadcast different advices, one of them being: "Know Your Rights" and I took their advice very seriously.

By the way, in my presence, the Police assaulted the building using a helicopter, too, and the students were simply sent home after interrogation. A few days after, martial law was announced. The Academy itself got its name changed, new management installed, and went under auspices of The Ministry of Internal Affairs, making the school effectively a military academy.

Next lesson was learned on November 11th, 1982. There were riots in Warszawa. I have to explain the notion of the "Solidarity riot". Solidarity was a non-violence movement. The protesters could be shouting slogans, waving national flag or banners but nobody sane would have ever thrown a stone, a bottle, anything, at the police. The reason for that was: "We are making peaceful protests and in turn we are oppressed by the police, so we have morally won". To be very honest, yes, it was water-cannons, it was tear-gas, it was some arrests but in all honesty, nobody wanted to make any harm to the other side! It was like a street theatre when I think about it today.

On the said Nov 11th, 1982 (the day after Brezhnev died and the day Wałęsa was released), I and my best friend put our suits on and set off to Teatr Polski to see the Wyspiański's "Wyzwolenie" (Liberation). Attending the play was perceived as a patriotic duty for intelligentsia. My best friend was a son of a police-worker (not a policewoman), so he knew many tricks. He told me that we should walk at slow pace, as we were taking a stroll, casual people, and under no circumstance we should look in policemen's eyes. That worked out very well. The first patrol that stopped us and question: "Where are you going to?". "We are going to the theatre", "OK". After the play, we went to see more riots. In the park behind the Arsenal I discovered how fast police cars were when used for chasing people ;-) Yes, we were running in our suits ;-) Getting on the bus, the bus full of tear-gas, so everybody cried. Someone remarked: "So sad that the good guy Brezhnev died, everybody's weeping for him..." ;-) Eventually, friend and I walked downwards on a sloped street towards Vistula River and suddenly I could see the crowd running towards us, very fast. Friend said: "Don't run. We are walking down as if nothing had happened". Then I could see something that made me really shocked. The reason for fear were not any uniformed policemen, no. It was a mob of well-built young men wearing plain clothes, actually disco-style, with shields and bludgeons, smashing their shields with batons and chanting: "GO HOME! GO HOME!" This made me really scared as I realized that secret police really existed, too, and the display of power was overwhelming. Friend whispered "Walk on towards them". Guess what? The "boys" did not notice us because we were nobody to them....

Interesting times.
15 Jun 2011
Language / Czech language sounds like baby talk to most Poles. Similarities? [222]

Please, tell us which foreign language is closer to Polish than Czech?


Slovak was also created/re-created about the same time as Czech but Slovak, being part of Hungary, were not paranoid about Poland and just used words from local dialects without further restrictions.

A Pole can take a Slovak book and just read it with minor problems. A Pole will not understand a Czech book, though.

Rower is koło here in Gliwice ;) ;)

Some say deska as płyta here too :) Must be the Cieszyn folk :)

Some say paliwo or płyn here too :)

OK. Seanus, I have to worry you.

"Koło", the Polish word means "wheel" and it is "kruh" in Czech.
"Deska", the Polish word means "wood plank" but "deska" means "plate" or "disc" in Czech and "prkno" is the "wood plank"

"Paliwo", the Polish word means "fuel" and it is "palivo" in Czech.
Poles do not say "płyn" when they mean "gas", they say "gaz".
Polskie Górnictwo Naftowe i GAZOWE.

How can you say Polish and Czech are similar if you may-be know some Silesian words and draw similarities of that?
15 Jun 2011
Language / Czech language sounds like baby talk to most Poles. Similarities? [222]

Seanus, I spoke with my Upper Silesian friend today about exactly those matters. He told me for twentieth time: "Silesia was not really Polish for most of history but it wasn't German or Czech either. We are folk people, no szlachta. People were speaking local dialects since 15th century. Due to lack of Polish influence, many many words in Silesian are retained from ancient folk Polish. Excellent example is gorzoła (wódka, vodka). It is enough to read last names of Silesians: These are very often ancient Polish folk words, decidedly not -ski, -icz, etc."

Read more here: or

In case you cannot read it, go to:
15 Jun 2011
Language / Czech language sounds like baby talk to most Poles. Similarities? [222]

Some Poles see more similarities than you do, AS ;)

SILESIAN. You live in SILESIA, Seanus. Silesian is ancient Polish + modern Polish + German + Czech, boroku ;-)

"Some English see more similarities between English and Scottish" - this is what you've just said.
Edit: mafketis, I'll wait for Magdalena. I know what Czech people say about both languages.
I will only tell you one thing:
Czech lahev is lingustically Old Polish łagiew. No Pole will call a bottle łagiew. All will say butelka.
14 Jun 2011
Life / Price of cigarettes in Poland? [192]

The brick of cigarettes at the airport will you cost more than in the city. Trust me.
14 Jun 2011
Language / Czech language sounds like baby talk to most Poles. Similarities? [222]

Close like Hell.

Cz. deska, Pl. płyta (a disc)
Cz. kolo, Pl. rower (a bicycle)
Cz. laska, Pl. miłość (love)
Cz. hul, Pl. laska (a stick)
Cz. cena divaku, Pl. nagroda publicznosci (prize of audience)
Cz. divadlo, Pl. teatr (theatre)
Cz. pocitac, Pl. komputer (a computer)
Cz. plyn, Pl. gaz (gas)
Cz. fluid, Pl. płyn (fluid)
Cz. hudba, Pl. muzyka (music)
Cz. prst, Pl. palec (a finger)
Cz. hledat, Pl. szukać (search)
Cz. zapad, Pl. zachód (west)
Cz. zachod, Pl. wychodek (privy)
Cz. Nashledanou! Pl. Do widzenia! (Good-bye)
Cz. Ahoj!, Pl. Cześć! (Hi!)
Cz. Ano, Pl. tak (yes)
Cz. domov, Pl. dom rodzinny (home)
Cz. dum, Pl. budynek (house)
Do I need to write both dictionaries to convince you Seanus the number of similarities in both languages is minor? From the top of my head I can only tell you one obvious word:

Cz. struna, Pl. struna (guitar string)
14 Jun 2011
Language / Czech language sounds like baby talk to most Poles. Similarities? [222]

The most salient argument in favor of the historical preponderance of the German over the (native!) Czech language, is that not only did Prag belong to the Austro-Hungarian Empire (in which German remained the dominant language), but many of her most famous authors, both Jewish and non-Jewish, wrote in German, NOT Czech, e.g. Kafka, Meyrink and others.

Lyzko, we are discussing nothing else than modern Czech language and its presumed similarity to Polish.
Any other discussion will result in massive offtopic, you have already seen BB.
I can only assure you Czechs haven't forgotten 1938.
14 Jun 2011
Language / Czech language sounds like baby talk to most Poles. Similarities? [222]

Seanus, the matter is not in softness. The matter is:
1. Totally different vocabulary. Where we Poles say "metal" they say "kov", Where we say "sklep" they say "sklad" but they believe it is "cellar". When we hear "smiseni zbozi" we believe they talk about mixed cereal but they mean multi-branch store.

2. Totally different grammar. To learn Czech grammar, a Pole has to forget the whole Polish grammar.

3. Totally different pronunciation.

I have no problems with Russian. Russians praise my Muscovite pronunciation, softness of my speech. Seanus, have you ever HEARD the pronunciation of the Czech phoneme "ř"? It is so HARD a Pole cannot say it.

Paste this word kříž to Google Translate and press "Listen". Then try with Polish krzyż. You will hear "kszysz".
14 Jun 2011
Language / Czech language sounds like baby talk to most Poles. Similarities? [222]

No, Seanus. Poles have no problems with Russian, Ukrainian etc. Poles have problems with Czech.
Your friend.... Well, I presented this Czech song to Magdalena:

And do you know what Magdalena said? "Probably a Pole, Czech philologist, good Czech, still I spot deficiencies such as..."

Are you telling me Seanus my friend who sang the song does it badly? Still she, M.A. in Czech language cannot pronounce like a Czech can.

Listen to this, too:
The only Polish words are: 'Uwaga, uwaga, palenie titonia powoduje raka" (it should be 'tytoniu'). That would be 'Pozor, pozor, kureni tabaka posobuji rakovinu".... in Czech.

Does the song sound Polish to you? Do you hear this language in Gliwice? ;-)
14 Jun 2011
Language / Czech language sounds like baby talk to most Poles. Similarities? [222]

To my knowledge, only Poles pronounce wieczór that hard. The Czechs don't, the Russians neither (oj to ne vecher). I love the way young Poles speak.

Szones, I think I have enough.

I started my Czech travels in 1991 and travel to Czech Republic regularly. I'm fascinated with Czech language. I read Czech books. Still, after 20 years I cannot say a proper Czech sentence not even talking pronunciation!

Goddam! No Pole except special cases such as philologists could pronounce the word "kříž" (cross) properly because of those hard "ř"s, soft "ž"s, long and short vowels, stress on first syllable (always) and totally upside-down grammar!

The language is not to be learned by any AVERAGE Pole and this is the point in Czech.
14 Jun 2011
Language / Czech language sounds like baby talk to most Poles. Similarities? [222]

Well..then bring dates with your can't be so hard, can't it!

What fcuking dates?! In 1620 Habsburg tanned the Czech asses. Since then Czech language disappeared soon. The Czech National Revival started around 1780 and the new language was ready in 1840s. What else will you like to know? Ask goddam Magdalena, she's Czech and know everything about it!

Moreover, read "Good Soldier Svejk", Brattie. Here's famous sentence:
-- We Austrian, disregarding German or Czech are far more civilized than those Hungarian peasants.

The Svejk action dates to 1914.

Czech people were so tired with Austrian/German domination they actually sought Panslavic help in Russians, the same Russians being enemies of Poles in the same era!
14 Jun 2011
Language / Czech language sounds like baby talk to most Poles. Similarities? [222]

In Września, right.
BB, are you not ashamed to litter quite serious thread? As if I was littering your path...

Antek_Stalich: Any germanism was thoroughly removed.
Not with the many Germans living there...

With "high" Czech, totally. German words remain in street Czech. I see you're a frequent visitor to the Czech Republic and can speak Czech?

Bratwusts: Who fights with Wikipedia, of Wikipedia dies:

The Czech language was more or less eradicated from state administration, literature, schools, Charles University and among the upper classes. Books written in Czech were burned and any publication in Czech was considered to be heresy by the Jesuits. The Czech language was reduced to a means of communication between peasants, who were often illiterate. Therefore, the Revival looked for inspiration among ordinary Czechs in the countryside.

14 Jun 2011
Language / Czech language sounds like baby talk to most Poles. Similarities? [222]

The matter why the Czech language is so different from Polish is rather simple but it requires some historical background.

In 1620, Catholic army of the Habsburg dynasty won a decisive battle over Protestant Czech forces in the battle of White Mountain (Bila Hora) in then Bohemia. Not only significant number of Czech nobles were killed, more to be executed soon, but Habsburgs initiated violent re-catholicisation of Bohemia. This involved severe repressions towards those who didn't want to obey the new rulers and religion. As the effect, the Czech nobility and literate people left the country. For next 160 years, Bohemia and Moravia (area of Czech Republic of today) got completely germanized, only countryside speaking local dialects as well as rare people in the cities.

Note: Partitioned Poland had never lost the Polish language for 144 years but Bohemians lost their language in the homeland due to lack of the Czech elite there and due to lack of any Church that might help Czech people retain the language. On contrary, partitioned Poland retained her elite, the Church and the language.

Following the abolition of serfdom by Holy Roman Emperor Joseph II in 1781, migration of village population to cities combined with efforts of national thinking Czech intellectuals began what is called Czech National Revival which lasted to 1840s. New Czech language was created, or recreated by that principle:

The Czech language shall be re-created from as many local dialects as possible as well as of the ancient Czech but is should be as much different from the Polish language as possible PERIOD.

Why so? The Czech nation was already predominantly atheist (because they did not want to conform to the Catholic faith and could not practice the Protestant religion) -- and Poland was Catholic; and sided by a large Polish nation, Czech revivalists were afraid the Czech language would lose its identity by the Polish element. This way, the Czech vocabulary, grammar, and pronunciation are totally different from the Polish language.

It was not the end of the story: The danger was not only the Polish language but also German. Therefore, Czech language purists watched carefully whether the Czech language was not being littered with German. Any germanism was thoroughly removed.

Funny thing is, there are three versions of the Czech language: "High" Czech, clinically pure, spoken officially; "popular" Czech involving words from other languages, e.g., German, Polish or... English, spoken in the streets; and "folk" Czech, consisting of local dialects, such as the lingo of Beskyd (Beskidy) highlanders.

I hope that RobertLee can now understand how naieve the views of him and his friends have been.

By the way, as much Czech seems "childish" to Poles as much Polish seems "boorish" to Czechs. Say "zachód" (west) in Polish, and it is "privy" to Czechs. Say "szukać" (search) in Polish, and it is "fcuk" for Czechs ;)
14 Jun 2011
Language / You & The Polish Language: Just in One Sentence [11]

myjustyna: You may compare it with other Slavic languages
The Czech language is the most similar to Polish, however it sounds like "child talk" to Poles.

Myjustyna, question: Robert Lee wrote untrue statement. I correct that statement: Polish is not in slightest way similar to Czech from various historical reasons that I could elaborate:

1. Will you prefer including false statement of Robert in your work?
2. Will my statement help you more?

Mods: Think twice and act only after Myjustyna answers. This is fair.
14 Jun 2011
Food / Expats' Polish food favourites [140]

I would substract sugar and vinegar from this equation and added some dill ;-)
14 Jun 2011
Food / Expats' Polish food favourites [140]

Teflcat; When our family was just doing tourism, we always asked locals for some good place to eat, and I can tell you we love British fish & chips served for example in free-houses. Especially as you do not need to use vinegar if you do not need it. The story I told you above was a group of Englishmen having their lunch with me at a company's premises, with the food certainly brought from a booth. Still, the exclamation "Delicious fish, isn't it!" after eating that crap by the group was amusing to me ;-)

Antek_Stalich: fresh cucumber salad with sour cream and dill?
that's mizeria

I was interested what sobieski would say about that one.
14 Jun 2011
Food / Expats' Polish food favourites [140]

Sobieski, what about fresh cucumber salad with sour cream and dill? My Polish favourite.
14 Jun 2011
Food / Expats' Polish food favourites [140]

Ah, now I just have to object. Malt vinegar and salt on chips, with a piece of breaded, deep-fried cod is my idea of heaven. Antek, be aware that we use brow malt vinegar for this. It's not easy to get in Poland, in fact I've only seen it during Lidl's British weeks.

I must tell you something teflcat and do not take this personally because I generally am an anglophile and am even forcing myself to eat Marmite and Bovril ;-) So:

It is unbelievable experience to see a Brit eating that overcooked fish, one dripping with oil, with overcooked chips dripping with oil and with the stench of malt vinegar, and after having eaten that, hear him saying: "Delicious fish, isn't it?" ;-)
14 Jun 2011
Food / Expats' Polish food favourites [140]

- Sałatka z śmietanem (who combines sour cream and salad ????

Sałata ze śmietaną (lettuce salad with sour cream). For example, the Scandinavian make sweet herring and eat marmalade on cheese on toasts, Norwegian pickle they fish in potassium lye, and Swedish allow their fish rot, then eat it. I do not think lettuce with sour cream is that bad. For me, it is delicious!

Nóżki w galarecie w occie (pork leg meat in jelly with vinegar). Would you expect eating pork with sugar? What about British (also Irish) chips with vinegar? THAT sucks! ;-)

Carp. Every fish to be eaten is killed some time, but carp itself is good and delicate.
14 Jun 2011
Language / You & The Polish Language: Just in One Sentence [11]

Myjustyna, my first part of the answer -- the one in italics -- was directed to the Moderator who wanted to damage this thread by his interventions. It was not directed to you.

Why "satanically"??? . . . Are you sure it is easy for any Polish kid? Don't kids find it difficult?

I could say "archdemonically" if you like. See this thread: Polish was chosen the HARDEST LANGUAGE in the world to learn... :D

Polish is extremely easy for Polish children, at least to understand and speak, and the kids can even learn reading and writing quickly.