Not by the book.
The book I'm studying out of mentions that it takes about 2,000 to 2,500 characters to be literate in written Chinese. The instructor, meanwhile, mentioned that one can get by with about 200. Another tidbit this class provided that the book didn't - there are situations where the same statement (tones, vocabulary and all) can refer to the future or to the past. This is the sort of shopping I don't regret - the sort that takes up less space than a motorbike or ten, and provides more enrichment than bad dates and -isms. The sort of shopping I'm not into? The catalog sort that decides now's a good time to send copy after copy after seasons without. So tempted to send over a product from a competitor. But if anyone still thinks money equals makeup is a good idea, go ahead and pretty up with polyester eyelashes, padded underwear, and hair from someone else's head (or back - who knows). To end this on a completely unrelated high note - I found a free video that brought up an interesting memory, sated my curiosity, and had nothing to do with the usual platform. Feels good to have one more tether loosening.