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The Learning Practical Turkish Team

A page of background about the simple folk who developed and still nurture
the Learning Practical Turkish Website --
and a few words, too, about some of their family and fiends,
er, friends...

In which everyone comes out lookin' pritty damned good...

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Meet the Masters

Your fortunate hosts...
Jim and Perihan Masters are a husband and wife team, living on the Aegean Coast of Turkey just 50 miles south of Izmir. Jim was born in Shanghai, China -- of American military parentage. Peri was born on the Black Sea coast of Turkey near Trabzon, of Turkish military parentage...First at Brown University and then at the University of North Carolina, Jim pursued studies in Mathematics and Computer Science. Upon graduation, he worked as a computer programmer/analyst on both US coasts before taking a position in London as Technical Director for a computer facilities management firm -- during the late 60's and early 70's. Enticed by a Financial Times advertisement, he joined a NATO sponsored enterprise in Ankara in 1974 where he met the beautiful and brainy Perihan, a rising young Turkish banking executive. It was uninhibited love at first sight, except that neither spoke the other's language! So they embarked on a mad language learning scramble (which continues to this day) that culminated in their marriage -- now in its 30-something year. After spending fifteen working years Stateside (with numerous visitations to Turkey), the two opted to return permanently to Turkey in 1992 to take up residence in a seaside resort town near İzmir -- in the heart of what was once the ancient Ionian Empire. There they live an idyllic life by the sea -- writing, drawing and painting, teaching English, and providing computing service support to local businesses. To date, the couple has co-authored 6 books (3 for Lonely Planet Publications) on subjects related to the Turkish Language, Culture, and Cuisine - as well as their own Turkish language-learning CD/Broadband Edition. They also sponsor the MSNBC award-winning Learning Practical Turkish Website which has built an enthusiastic international following of devoted Turkophiles and inquisitive language students of all ages.

What's Soledad O'Brien Got To Do WIth It?
The Coveted
MSNBC HomePage Heroes Award
The MSNBC Homepage Hero's Award.>
Click the image to see
all of LPT's Internet awards.

23 July 1997
Soledad O'Brien hosts the site
on the day LPT receives
MSNBC Home Page Hero award

Soledad O'brien hosts 'the site' on the day LPT recieves MSNBC Home Page Hero' award - 23 July 1997
LPT's earliest international WWW recognition occurred on a Wednesday...the 23rd of July, 1997. O'Brien was hosting the site in San Francisco on the fledgling MSNBC network. And our satellite TV antenna on the Aegean seacoast of Turkey was scanning away like gang busters...

During the 'Sal and Stef' Homesite Heroes segment (near the 5.minute.45.second.mark of the accompanying 11 MB .WMV film-clip), Sal (Salvatore Bovoso, along with partner Stefen Reilly) announces to Soledad that the #1 award among international HomePage Hero webpages goes to (don't blink) Learning Practical Turkish... O'Brien grins mischieviosly (as if remembering our Off-Color Turkish page) and adds, "I've seen that site, that is a good site." Click the screenshot of Soledad to relive the event like it happened yesterday. But, please be patient while the file downloads -- we'll keep experimenting, but we're not sure that we can reduce its size, any further...
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Here's Peri...

Just after sundown on her side porch --
with the Aegean Sea and Perihan's Island
in the background.

And hosting a Kon Kan card party...

With her Mom (Leman) and daughter (Yeşim)...

With her other 'pride and joy'.

An' the gurl kin cook. Oh yeah!

Or play Noel Baba for the town kids...

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And Jim...

Emerging from the crystal blue waters
after a twilight dip...

Doesn't your barber do housecalls on nice spring days?

With daughter Ansley at a beach-side cafe...

Coach Jim with his Ringtail Rugrats Softball Team, 1998

Shhhh...Artiste at work.

The Captain and Jimille on The Blue Voyage.

A sleepy-head doing winter-morning work on LPT in the attic library...

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Where they live...

Bungalows by the Sea...

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Along the congested Aegean Seacoastline of Turkey...

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Get your bearings on this big map...


Do you see the red dot (left-middle) on the Aegean Seacoast near Izmir? That's the general location of
where they live.

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Close-up of their location -- as seen on this old coastal map...


From the point in the sea where the two black lines intersect...If you draw a straight red line towards land through the center of the right angle it will strike the coast almost exactly where Jim and Peri live. To the left of the red line, you may notice Perihan's Island -- erroneously named Pontiko on the map.
Thanks to John M. for the old map!

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Just down the road from...

A Colossus Artemis Cult statue
Claros -- Notium
(20 minutes from home)

Library of Ephesus
Selçuk -- Ephesus
(30 minutes away)
And just around the corner from...

Tangerine pickin' time --
in the heart of Turkey's tangerine, orange, and
artichoke country
(5 minutes from home on foot across the coastal road)

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Dear family -- who are also contributors!

Yeşim and Cüneyt Büyükburç
Daughter and Son-in-Law
Voice Contributors

Daughter Yeşim (with Jim) and...

Son-in-law Cüneyt (and Peri).
Yankı Sungar
Nephew (Son of Semra, Peri's sister)
Article Advisor, Tongue-twister Pro, Off-color Editor, General Computer Guru, etc...

"Yankee" (and Jim)

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Dear friends -- who are also contributors!

The Fair Jessica (Schafer)
Friend to the end
Website Advisor, Personal Experience and Book Review Contributor,
Food and Beverage Coordinator

A smiley Jessica and friend...
When we asked 'Jes' to provide us some background material, here's what we got...
"i figured you didn't really want to know all about my assorted jobs in my misspent youth (e.g., organizing and running a food co-op, teaching elementary school, working retail, and food service, modeling for drawing classes, being a chauffeur for an elderly couple, working as a darkroom assistant for a photographer, simultaneous translation (french to english, english to french), writing local history articles for small town newspapers, babysitting baby zoo animals in our home [for six months, but the skunk and the boa ended all that...this IS true.], flying glider planes [one year til a good friend had a serious accident (i was *not* flying!) and moved in with us for a year], or coordinating volunteer programs, both paid and unpaid... i have two bizarre degrees -- a BPh in Languages and Literature [French and Chinese], and MLS in Library Science. since i met tom when i was eighteen and we married when i was nineteen, there isn't a lot of oomph in that either. both of us got our degrees in between life, working, and children."
It's sad how her life has had no 'oomph' in it, innit?

Here's a partial list of Jessica's LPT credits:
The Ladies Turkish Bath -- Personal Experience
Driving in Turkey -- Personal Experience
Turkish Reflections -- Book Review
Culture Shock -- Book Review
Harem -- Book Review
Istanbul Everyman Guide -- Book Review
Successful Language Learning -- Book Review
Lonely Planet Guide, Turkey -- Book Review
Ancient Civilizations/Ruins of Turkey -- Book Review

Oh. We almost forgot...Here's Jessica's 'formal' autobio...
"Encountering Jim four years ago, on a Turkish ISP listserv, I was impressed with his clever wit and tactful but helpful messages [later of course I learned his *true* nature...]. As an expat relocated to Turkey for a two year assignment that somehow morphed into five years, I got hooked on his website and the language and people of Turkey. A wonderful friendship with two warm and intelligent people evolved (well, Peri is warm and intelligent...and also a fantastic cook!) In the US, I had been a professional reference librarian, in a Michigan public library. After our youngest son left the nest, I decided to indulge myself in a life of travel, writing, and living abroad. Fortunately for me, my husband of now thirty years, offered Turkey as our first stop. Turkey was a marvelous country to explore and enjoy, and I have wonderful magical memories of my time there. I also had the opportunity to travel extensively all over Europe (including regular stops in Belgium to visit my mothers family.) Eventually the assignment in Turkey ended and now we live in Copenhagen, Denmark [we can only guess how long this "two" years will last...] The Scandinavian countries are incredibly beautiful and climate-wise, pretty much the total opposite of what we experienced in Izmir. It is a bit cold and dark in the winter, but the people of Denmark are warm and bright. Our love of the sunshine inspired us recently to buy a lovely fixer-upper on the Greek Island of Corfu. We look forward to spending our sunset years fixing drains, and tiling the roof. We will spend the next few years painting what we can and pretending that we can afford to do everything. Our three sons and two grandchildren are tolerantly amused and pleased we are too far away to embarrass them. And, oh yes...Sooner or later I WILL put a website together on 'expat living'."

Two pals...

Taşkın (Çalı) -- Our pal
Turkish Grammarian, Verbs Authenticator, Article Contributor, Off-color Editor,
Tongue-twister and other Voice Contributor, etc...

There is much that we could say about this fine fellow -- but it would be too much like 'gilding the lily.'
Still...let it be known, at least, that he's as true a friend as we have ever known.

With his wife and kids, paying a visit on Santa...

Here's a partial list of Taşkın's LPT credits:
Authenticator of Verbs (example)
Original ideas for articles (example)
Takatuka tongue-twister
Barbers Redux tongue twister
All male recordings on 'Accent on Turkish' (example)
All 'Math and Science' voice recordings
All but the first of the off-color voice recordings

Two pals...

Kalfaoğlu Internet Services

The Unflappable Turgut (Kalfaoğlu)
Cyber Amigo par excellance
Technical Advisor, Software Contributor, Entrepreneur
No one is going to believe this, of course, but Jim and Peri have never actually seen Turgut in person. Oh, there were those several times when he was on TV, but that doesn't count as 'in person'. And it's not from lack of opportunity. How many times, over the past 17 years, have Jim and Peri been to Izmir where Turgut hangs out? Nor is it from lack of trying either. Twice now, they've had firm appointments to meet -- only to be thwarted at the last minute. Argh! But lack of direct, face-to-face communication hasn't dampened their enthusiastic admiration for the man. We suppose it's a sign of the times -- where the telephone and the Internet have replaced the primary means of contact for so many of us... Still, Turgut is the nicest, most accomplished computer guru you ever want to meet...Here are a few random 'clips' from his voluminous resume...

"Education: B.S. Computer Information Systems, Elmira College, Elmira, New York, M.S. Networking and Server Design, Ege University, Izmir, Turkey... Current Owner-Operator of Zenit, Turkey's Full Service Internet Provider -- for English and Turkish-speaking customers. Formerly manager of the EgeNet Internet Service Provider ("The second fastest in Izmir Province" and where the Learning Practical Website was born)... diagnosing problems with routers, workstations... Authoring HTML/CGI/Java code... relocated to Paris for two years... List Owner of dozens of discussion lists ...Supported Ege university OS/2 and Unix installations and 3090 mainframe. Configured and maintained TCP/IP on VM, OS/2 and Unix workstations, including Web, Gopher, SMTP, FTP, Pop, etc. Bulletin Boards; Developed and operated the most successful BBS in Elmira, NY, USA and now in Izmir, Turkey... a FIDO-Internet gateway for Turkish Bulletin Boards...delivers 50 megabytes of mail and files per month. BBS-TURK is the busiest in town... its own PPP leased line and web server (http://bbsturk.bbs.tr)... over 12 Gigabytes of storage... on 12 different BBS networks processing over 8000 messages daily."

Now, if you take that impressive technical record and add the fact that he's the friendliest 'computer nerd' in Turkey, then you can see the reason we want him on our side when the chips are down. Why, he's the last of the seasoned Internet veterans we know who still uses 'smiley faces' in his e-mail!

Click on the next line to obtain a copy of Turgut's
Shareware Turkish Vocabulary Builder Program.

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The Golden Cookie
'Less is sometimes more'

And we'd be sadly remiss if we didn't take this chance to recognize some of our other, less 'well-known' LPT site visitors/contributors/advisors/friends/critics... who may not have quite made it into the LPT Hall of Fame (yet) but whose 'contributions' have often made our day!

Albert Sarda, Heidi Good, Kathryn Barker, Rick Merrill, Tuesday Frindt, Erol Abit, Jeanette Kschoe, Robert Thiel, Sheera, Avni Aksoy, Robert Zeidner, Rachelle Ibrahim, Erol Beymen, Bruce Brooks, Deborah Decker, Dr. John Ma, Ülkü Öner, Rhodora Magpayo, Crista Betz, Phil Finnimore, Stacey Penalon, Taner Nalbat, Liselotte Kristiansson, Hande Artam, Shelia Kadakal (Marnie), Erek Gass, John Tumpane, Deniz Brennan, Sal and Stef, Dhruba Sen, Tracy Bates, Kim Howell, Mehmet Göktürk, Robyn Birkbeck, Glenn Williams, Mehmet Ün, Marla Petal, A. Mesut Önen, James Barber, Samira Bourkadi Zarrouki, Darien Goldman, Dr. Atef Diab, Nilgün Belma Bugüner, Megan Öz, Colin Edmonds, Donna L. Whitney, Wendy Kurtuluş, Bruce Fleming, Capt. Muhlis Ergin, Patricia Rawlings, Terry Keeton, Nursen Çetin, Wolfgang Riemann, Jose Pedro Garcia, Onur Günday, Sjoerd Groot, Kaa Byington, SkrumpyJak, Johnny Skaaning, Motherof47, Gabby Ficker, Hasan Ayrancı, JJ Guise, Ertan Küçükyalçın, Nimet Deniz Soysalan, Alfonso Martinez, Deniz Sarıöz, Eileen Blackwell, Umur Çelikyay, Lindy English, Stefan Salzmann, Linda Bouchard,
David Gloster, Joanne Benoit, 'English Tony' Taylor,
and Lucy P. Inmypants.

And a special Golden Cookie also goes to you Un-named Friends who inspire us with your 'killer' queries, comments, and observations -- every day of the year!

We thank you one and all...
Jim and Peri

  • Essential Turkish Vocabulary
  • Turkish Pronunciation
  • Turkish Verbs
  • Essential Idioms, Index
  • Sentence Structure, Standard
  • Turkish Accenting
  • Turkish Numbers Revealed
  • Other Turkish Language Difficulties
  • Unrelated fun:
  • Frequently asked questions about Turkey and the Turkish language
  • llustrated Nargile Users Guide -- and Encyclopedia
  • Our Honda Generator -- A Member of the Family
  • Traditional Turkish Humor 1
  • Traditional Turkish Humor 2
  • Habibullah and The Great Cannon Caper
  • Turkish Tongue Twisters
  • Turkish Belly Dancers
  • Turkish Tango, Dance the Romance
  • Turkish Terms Of Endearment
  • Turkish Personal Names
  • Politically Incorrect Turkish Humor
  • Why Off-Color Turkish is important too
  • Turkish Movies, Letter-A
  • Turkish Kinsey Report #6 - Turkish Turn-Ons
  • Turkish Kinsey Report #1 - Turkey opens up about its seks
  • Turkish Kinsey Report #2 - Did they hear it through the grapevine?
  • Turkish Kinsey Report #3 - Was it good for you?
  • Turkish Kinsey Report #4 - The first time, by age group...
  • Turkish Kinsey Report #5 - Who's gotta have it? He? Or she?
  • Divorce, Turkish-style
  • Learn Turkish language, Online color bar

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