If you've got access to S4C next Tuesday, here's what you should be watching at 9 p.m. One of the stranger aspects of my Welsh-learning experience has been the low-level and mostly unprofitable fame that's come with it.
I'm stretching the definition of "fame" here, of course. I am not actually famous. But I am well-known enough here that if there were such a thing as Welsh-language Celebrity Brother, I would probably get the call*.
I'm not the first American to learn Welsh. But I am the first one to do so totally on my own, using free stuff I found on the Internet, and then dedicate countless meg of web space to bigging myself up over it on two blogs. I can't help thinking that I am "famous" not because I am unique, but because I have no shame.
Whatever the reason, I found myself being followed by cameras, written about, and interviewed on radio. When I first moved to Wales, I had no phone or Internet but people were getting in touch with me by calling the BBC.
Next Tuesday's programme is the culmination of the BBC's following me around for 10 months, from before I left to the United States to the start of this semester. I got a chance to view the programme a few weeks ago and it was interesting to see all that time squeezed into about 50 minutes. I can only hope that when I die and my life flashes before me, it is as well-edited and treats me as kind.
My only complaint about the programme is that I'm in it. I am so skinny. I am sure people will lose track of what I'm saying in interviews because they will be too busy thinking: "Does he not eat? He says he's struggling financially, but surely he could go out and beg for enough change to get some chips or something."
Fortunately, my lanky frame wandering about is interrupted by intelligent things being said by Rachel, funny things being said (loudly) by Eric, quick YouTube clips that make it look as if I am not as boring as I actually am, and lovely scenic shots of the Twin Cities and Cardiff metro areas.
*This is a lie, by the way. I'm not that well-known, but I wanted to work in a Celebrity Big Brother joke.