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Thread: Very short short story; please check grammar etc.

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    Very short short story; please check grammar etc.

    I've written a fairly silly short story (about 1000 words long); attached version in Russian only. If anyone would like to, please read it and let me know if it makes sense, or if anything is just wrong/nonsense. If this is not a good place to post this, or if anyone knows anywhere else I could post it for more feedback, please let me know. Thanks!
    Attached Files Attached Files

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    for some reason there are mistakes in the file, I may have attached the unchecked one... better one attached now...

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    Молчание Кроликов.

    - Мама, хочу чебурашку! -
    Был вторник: день варенья, яиц, хлеба... словом, день покупок. Маша и сын её, Саша, ходили пешком за покупками, а сейчас сынок устал.
    - Мама, хочу чебурашку своего! - ("своего чебурашку" is better; or use comma like "чебурашку, своего")
    - В мире нет чебурашек, Сашенка, как ты знаешь. Они мифические животные.
    - А по телевизору есть... -
    -Да, сынок, а по телевизору показывают всё ("всякое" would be better - говорят всякое, пишут всякое - common sceptical phrase), но не всё есть в реальности. -
    Как-то удивленно смотря на свои кроссовки, которые шли внизу, Саша думал об этом.
    -Может быть, купи мне маленького зайчика, который умеет говорить! -
    Вздохнув, Маша, сама устала от желаний сына (мечта - generally is one\single, though "мечты" is eligible) и от его постоянного болтания, разрешила наконец.
    - Да, хорошо, если ты так настаиваешь. Ну, послушай, если уж в первом магазине, в которые мы зайдём, есть такой кролик, я тебе его куплю. Но если нет, я никогда не хочу снова слышать об этом! Конец разговора, договорились? - (Разговор окончен - alternative, more common sentence)
    - В первом магазине? -
    - Да, только в первом. -
    Он подумал и ответил:
    - Да, пойдём! -
    Тут Маша повернулась налево, зашла в ближайший магазин, и за ней последовал Саша, смеющийся: Над дверью, надпись "Мир животных"...

    В то время там (there) находилась молодая продавщица Алина; в узком месте. (в переплёте?) в узком проходе
    Кажется, при попытке найти свои очки под прилавком, её упитанное туловище застряло, и вот теперь, она там оставалась.
    Прозвенел дверной звонок; зашла пара, одна пара с детским голосом?
    «Да нет! Покупатели! Нет, это руководитель и дочь. Какой ужас!»
    Саша увидел вокруг себя: налево, шумные птицы, молчанне (?) и млекопитающих (молчание млекопитающих). А там, между вверх ногами (?) кот и несколько занятых мышей, стоял в клетке серенький, довольный зайчик; одно ухо вверх, другое вниз. А внизу, под прилавком, Алина была невидима.
    - Мама! Этот зайчик мой! -
    Маша смотрела на своего нежеланного, проклятого зверя. Несколько моменты прошли, и она обратилась к ему:
    - Ну, вообще умеешь ли говорить? Что случилось? -
    Алина, услышав голос руководителя, ответила:
    -Какой ужас! Я в ловушке! -
    Пара вытаращили глаза в шоке!
    -Что это здесь? Это не может быть! Ты в порядке? - сказала Маша, с опасением.
    -Нет, помогите мне! Вытащите меня, скоро возврашается владелец, нельзя чтобы он меня нашёл здесь во второй раз! (common expression \ threat "пусть это будет в первый и последний раз") - Умолял маленький голос.
    - Да, конечно! - вскрикнул Саша, и к Маше:
    - Возьмите его на руки, сразу! -
    Ещё не придя в себя, Маша просто сделала это; оба посмотрели друг на друга, и убежали.
    . . .

    I guess someone should continue.
    Your writing is pretty well, where are you from?

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    Thanks Serge_spb!

    I'm from England. There are way more mistakes in there than I thought, mostly simple ones.

    Кажется, при попытке найти свои очки под прилавком
    My original should have been :
    Кажется, при попытке найти её очки под прилавком

    So it is permissible to use 'свои' here rather than 'её', even though the girl was only once mentioned in the previous paragraph? That's interesting, I thought that you could only use свой etc when the person has been mentioned in a previous clause. It makes sense though, as its obvious that this is the person being referred to.

    шумные птицы not птиц? I thought because they are animate.
    молчанне (?) и млекопитающих was supposed to read 'silence, and mammals' I was trying to be clever I suppose...
    вверх ногами кот (?) upside down. My cat sleeps like like that.

    Thanks for reading that, I'm glad that most of it seems to make sense.

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    Quote Originally Posted by grafrich
    Кажется, при попытке найти свои очки под прилавком
    My original should have been :
    Кажется, при попытке найти её очки под прилавком
    There is no need to mention anything to use свой. Свой only means that an action taker affects something of their own. To clarify that maze of a sentence:

    Она ищет свои очки - She's looking for her (own) glasses.
    Она ищет её очки - She's looking for some other girl's glasses.

    Он любит свою жену - He loves his wife
    Он любит его жену - He loves other man's wife

    This is what свой is all about.

    Quote Originally Posted by grafrich
    вверх ногами кот (?) upside down. My cat sleeps like like that.
    That gives me a funny picture of your cat sleeping on his head with its rear legs up, I mean the Russian phrase. I guess you meant на спине with all its 4 legs up.

    Quote Originally Posted by Serge_spb
    Маша и сын её, Саша, ходили пешком за покупками, а сейчас сынок устал.
    Ходили is for a routine action that happened a lot of times in the past. Like a habit. We have an ongoing action in the past there, therefore it must be "шли" instead. Also the sentence is worded badly, sorry. You have connected шли за покупками and а сынок устал very strangely.

    Маша и её сын Саша шли (пешком - redundant really) за покупками, и тут (then) Саша устал. Сейчас and past tense doesn't work well together, generally.

    Quote Originally Posted by Serge_spb
    Как-то удивленно смотря на свои кроссовки, которые шли внизу, Саша думал об этом.
    This is very very weird. Кроссовки are a thing, they don't go on their own I suggest:

    Как-то удивленно смотря в пол на свои кроссовки, Саша думал об этом.

    Quote Originally Posted by Serge_spb
    Ну, послушай, если уж в первом магазине, в который мы зайдём, есть такой кролик, я тебе его куплю.
    Quote Originally Posted by grafrich
    Саша увидел вокруг себя: налево, шумные птицы, молчанне (?) и млекопитающих (молчание млекопитающих).
    Саша посмотрел вокруг/по сторонам, Саша осмотрелся - увидеть вокруг себя is very weird.

    Саша посмотрел вокруг. Слева - шумные птицы, тишина и млекопитающие. Still a little strange as млекопитающие doesn't fit in that list really, IMO.

    Quote Originally Posted by Serge_spb
    Несколько моменты прошли, и она обратилась к ему:
    Grammatically - несколько мометов. But we don't really use момент in such cases as British do. I suggest you substitite it with секунд - несколько секунд... Ему must be нему there.


    A few notes: I kind of don't really grasp all of the story. You have 3 people in it. Mom - Masha, her son - Sasha, saleswoman - Alina. Right? Saleswoman seems to think that the pair, Masha and Sasha, that went into her shop is her manager and her DAUGHTER? I mean I'm totally lost from that point on.

    P.S. I'll get back to the rest of the story later if no one else has corrected it by that time.
    I do not claim that my opinion is absolutely true.
    If you've spotted any mistake in my English, please, correct it. I want to be aware of any mistakes to efficiently eliminate them before they become a habit.

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    Почтенный гражданин Serge_spb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by grafrich View Post
    Кажется, при попытке найти свои очки под прилавком
    My original should have been :
    Кажется, при попытке найти её очки под прилавком



    So it is permissible to use 'свои' here rather than 'её', even though the girl was only once mentioned in the previous paragraph? That's interesting, I thought that you could only use свой etc when the person has been mentioned in a previous clause. It makes sense though, as its obvious that this is the person being referred to.
    Frankly, it would be easier if you`d put the text directly into the posting area.
    I`ve been checking the 2 flie, it goes
    "В то время находилась молодая продавшица Алина; в узком месте. (в переплёте?)
    Кажется, при попытке найти у неё очки под прилавком, её упитанное туловище застрияло"


    "Свой" is a pronoun just like "Я", "Ты", "Мы", "Вы" итд. It stands for "his" or "own" and I don`t think that it needs any previous mentioning \ referrence.
    Examples are:

    -Она замешкалась при попытке достать свой телефон из сумки.
    -Паркуйте свои автомобили в разрешенных местах!
    -Без очков я не вижу дальше своего носа.
    -2004 Movie called "Свои" (meaning is "Our WW2 allies among betrayers")
    https://www.kinopoisk.ru/film/79882/


    шумные птицы not птиц? I thought because they are animate.
    Птица (single) -птицы (plural)

    Шумные птицы (nominative)
    but
    Шум птиц

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    Почтенный гражданин Serge_spb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by iCake View Post

    Ходили is for a routine action that happened a lot of times in the past. Like a habit. We have an ongoing action in the past there, therefore it must be "шли" instead.

    "Маша и сын её, Саша, ходили пешком за покупками, а сейчас сынок устал." - is absolutely fine sentence, no need for "шли".
    They have already done their shopping.

    "Чем занимались сегодня? - Ходили за покупками"
    "Я спешу, только ходила (or сходила) за покупками, и надо снова бежать"
    etc

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    Quote Originally Posted by Serge_spb View Post
    "Маша и сын её, Саша, ходили пешком за покупками, а сейчас сынок устал." - is absolutely fine sentence, no need for "шли".
    They have already done their shopping.

    "Чем занимались сегодня? - Ходили за покупками"
    "Я спешу, только ходила (or сходила) за покупками, и надо снова бежать"
    etc
    Yes, sure. If he did mean that the shopping had been done at that point and it seems like he did. I don't know why but when reading that sentence for the first time I had a feeling that he wanted to say thet they were on their way to do some shopping. Looks like a wrong assumption now.
    I do not claim that my opinion is absolutely true.
    If you've spotted any mistake in my English, please, correct it. I want to be aware of any mistakes to efficiently eliminate them before they become a habit.

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    на спине yes, If I had known that one, I'd have used it! Makes perfect sense.

    Как-то удивленно смотря на свои кроссовки, которые шли внизу, Саша думал об этом. I realise they don't tend to move on their own, I was trying to express the idea that, from his point of view (tired boy) they seemed to be moving without him making them move. Difficult idea to get across in my own language!

    увидел вокруг себя that's pretty much literally how we would say this in English, so I just translated literally, as a guess.

    The gist of the story (its a bit compliocated) is that the mother and son go into a shop, and while looking at the rabbit, they hear the voice of the shop girl, who they can't see, so they think that the rabbit is talking...

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    I understand about Свой now, thanks. I was a bit confused, it seems.

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    Маша и сын её, Саша, ходили пешком за покупками, а сейчас сынок устал.
    The idea here was just to express this idea:-
    'Masha and her son, Sasha, were going shopping on foot, and/but now the young son had become tired.'
    So I chose ходили as I thought it would imply that they do this (maybe) every week; an ongoing habit, a tiring, boring routine. Also to express the idea that they were in the middle of their shopping related journey when the other events occurred. I hadnt given any thought as to whether they had finished buying the shopping, or not. Sort of doesnt matter in this context.
    Are those good reasons to choose ходили instead of шли?

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    Шумные птицы (nominative)
    but
    Шум птиц
    yes, of course this is nominative птицы...

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    Quote Originally Posted by grafrich View Post
    ...Как-то удивленно смотря на свои кроссовки, которые шли внизу, Саша думал об этом. I realise they don't tend to move on their own, I was trying to express the idea that, from his point of view (tired boy) they seemed to be moving without him making them move...
    I see, then I suggest something like this:

    Как-то удивленно смотря на кроссовки, которые, как казалось ему, шли сами, Саша думал об этом. Or a bit simpler - ...на кроссовки, которые как-будто шли сами...

    Quote Originally Posted by grafrich View Post
    ...The gist of the story (its a bit compliocated) is that the mother and son go into a shop, and while looking at the rabbit, they hear the voice of the shop girl, who they can't see, so they think that the rabbit is talking...
    This makes perfect sense now I guess this is where I got lost:

    В то время находилась молодая продавшица Алина; в узком месте. (в переплёте?)
    This kind of doesn't make much sense. I think you should have established the idea that the saleswoman got stuck behind the counter and couldn't be seen by customers

    В это время, там находилась молодая продавщица Алина, которая застряла под прилавком и поэтому была скрыта от глаз покупателей. Something like that would have set off the upcoming events quite nicely.
    I do not claim that my opinion is absolutely true.
    If you've spotted any mistake in my English, please, correct it. I want to be aware of any mistakes to efficiently eliminate them before they become a habit.

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    I don't know why I didn't realise that I hadn't made it clear that the shop girl could neither see, nor be seen, due to being under the counter and hidden from view. It's so obvious now. Duh. I did write 'А внизу, под прилавком, Алина была невидимо.' later on, but that is a long way after the doorbell rining, I guess I should have put it in earlier.

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    Quote Originally Posted by grafrich View Post
    Маша и сын её, Саша, ходили пешком за покупками, а сейчас сынок устал.
    The idea here was just to express this idea:-
    'Masha and her son, Sasha, were going shopping on foot, and/but now the young son had become tired.'
    So I chose ходили as I thought it would imply that they do this (maybe) every week; an ongoing habit, a tiring, boring routine. Also to express the idea that they were in the middle of their shopping related journey when the other events occurred. I hadnt given any thought as to whether they had finished buying the shopping, or not. Sort of doesnt matter in this context.
    Are those good reasons to choose ходили instead of шли?
    Ah, then my initial correction was right, you should have used шли as it was an ongoing action at that time. You see, you're right that ходили implies a routine, habit, but only if the action is not happening now or at a time you're speaking of as ходили implies a completed action in that case.

    As @Serge_spb mentioned:

    Quote Originally Posted by Serge_spb
    "Маша и сын её, Саша, ходили пешком за покупками, а сейчас сынок устал." - is absolutely fine sentence, no need for "шли".
    They have already done their shopping.
    This means that in your sentence they were on their way FROM shopping and not on their way to "shopping", as you wanted to say.

    That's the difference.

    Quote Originally Posted by grafrich
    I don't know why I didn't realise that I hadn't made it clear that the shop girl could neither see, nor be seen, due to being under the counter and hidden from view. It's so obvious now. Duh. I did write 'А внизу, под прилавком, Алина была невидимо.' later on, but that is a long way after the doorbell rining, I guess I should have put it in earlier.
    I think you tried to do that, but failed due to your yet limited knowledge. No worries, you'll nail these kind of things soon enough and we'll be happy to help you on your way.

    One thing to note, in Russian невидимый usually means invisible in a sense of not being seen from any angle, in plain sight etc... Special forces kind of invisibility, which is not possible as of now as far as we know. If someone or something can't be seen because they're covered from view by something, then we usually say:

    Её/его/их etc не было видно
    I do not claim that my opinion is absolutely true.
    If you've spotted any mistake in my English, please, correct it. I want to be aware of any mistakes to efficiently eliminate them before they become a habit.

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    All points noted. There's a lot to remember when choosing which verbal aspect to use, if I'm trying to express something that I haven't learned by rote. I think it is just a matter of exposure and practice. And thanks for the encouragement, that helps too! Any chance you could read some more, see if it makes any sense? No worries if not, as long as someone does.

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    Quote Originally Posted by grafrich View Post
    All points noted. There's a lot to remember when choosing which verbal aspect to use, if I'm trying to express something that I haven't learned by rote. I think it is just a matter of exposure and practice. And thanks for the encouragement, that helps too! Any chance you could read some more, see if it makes any sense? No worries if not, as long as someone does.
    If it’s any consolation, Russians have similar problems with English verbs. I guess the verb declension is too different between languages. So much as the rules seem to hardly make any sense for learners I still can't say that I nailed this part of English, even after several years.

    As for the rest of your story, don't worry, as I said I'll get to it later, I just don't have the time to check it thoroughly now. I'll try to do that tomorrow.
    I do not claim that my opinion is absolutely true.
    If you've spotted any mistake in my English, please, correct it. I want to be aware of any mistakes to efficiently eliminate them before they become a habit.

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    В доме (no comma needed, also it's best to say дома if you're talking about home, not some house) Маша и Саша смотрели на кролика, который был ещё в клетке. (without this ещё в клетке seems to be affecting Маша and Саша) Он беcшумно любовался на обоих (no comma needed) и тихо ел листья.
    - Разве он может говорить! И какой приятный голос, милая крошка! - сказала Маша. Note: It seems like Masha already thinks that the rabbit can talk, therefore it'd be much better to say: Разве он не может говорить? Your original question is about whether it can speak or not, not asking for confirmation for your already established assumption. Note2: Можешь говорить and умеешь говорить are two different things usually, one is "can you speak now?", the other is "can you speak at all/in general?"
    - Почему он такой тихий? Думаешь ему грустно из-за шока? Um, gramatically okay but shock usually causes other feelings, like fear, for example.
    - Да, Сашенка, это шок. И у тоже у меня тоже шок! Поклянись мне, что никогда никому не проронишь ни слова об этом. Понял? A bit advanced, but for future reference: In natural speech ни could be substituted with и: никогда никому не проронишь и слова. И is an additional intensifier here and doesn't mean "and".
    - Да, Мама, понял, - ответил Саша, уже далее думая, - А как его назовём? Может Чебурашка? (No need for these "-" in the end of someone's phrase in a dialog). Also I don't like that далее in there at all. Better to get rid of it
    - Нет, подождём пока он сам скажет. Better: пока он сам его (name) скажет. To avoid potential confusion.
    При этом (no comma) маленький продолжал есть вокруг страница от вчерашнего газета по кругу страницу от вчерашней газеты. Малый (Use маленький instead of малый here though) кусок, становился всё меньше и меньше, пока не осталось только одно слово, и пара прочитала в тон:
    - Во-ло-дя ... Володя! Он сказал нам своё имя!
    Они улыбнулись друг другу на такое чудо, а зайчик как раз бросился наземь (бросился is like abruptly and with a lot of force, maybe use just спрыгнул?. Наземь is kind of outdated now, better to say на землю), будто говоря: «пока всё! Either: Пока, всё! (Goodbye! It's all!) or Пока всем (Goodbye all!)»
    . . .

    Когда проснулся кролик, он был окружен со всех стороне с сторон лицами детей. Russian doesn't have a fixed word order true, but better swap проснулся кролик there, it would sound better.
    - Ну, Саша, ты сказал, (comma should be before что, not after) что он умеет говорить. Давай! - сказал худой, рыжеватый юноша, трогая клетку, - Кажется, что Саша забыл своё вчерашнее обещание...
    - Не говори так строго, (watch these commas ) он боится, и Мама спит в другой комнате. Note: I guess you meant громко (loudly), not строго there, since the boy is worried about his mother sleeping in the other room?
    Встревожанний, мальенкий Володя - зайчик Встревоженный, маленький зайчик Володя укрылся под жеваной газетой. Сашина голова завертелась:
    - Ой! Настоял я, чтобы пригласили только детей! Он вскрикнул, как раз когда пришли вошли (stylistics, don't worry about this correction much) в комнату другие, в том числе и родители, и команда от местного телевидения, и знаменитая ведущая. Не кто иная (she's a girl after all), как Ирина Бронская, по прозвищу «Губитель.» Also губительница would be more appropriate for a woman
    Ирина продолжала, обращаясь насмешливо к Маше:
    - А вот Марья Петровна, владелец кролика «Володя.» Скажите нам, это что фокус-покус (no comma) или вы просто лгунья?
    Тут Маша вскипела:
    - ВОН! Терпеть не могу! Вон, все вон, немедленно!
    . . .

    To be continued later Great job buddy.


    @Lampada

    This forum editor really needs some lovel I mean it's short, even in an advanced state. It displays all the tags like color, italic, bold etc, essentially acting like a raw editor... Trying to correct a text like that and format it to look good is a MASSIVE pain in the butt. All of the tags in there mixed together with the normal text... Мешанина, просто мешанина. I spent more time battling this confusing mess of words with tags and trying to turn it into something easy to read than I spent trying to actually help our student.
    I do not claim that my opinion is absolutely true.
    If you've spotted any mistake in my English, please, correct it. I want to be aware of any mistakes to efficiently eliminate them before they become a habit.

  19. #19
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    Thanks loads iCake, I'm sorry there seems to have been extra difficulties with the formatting. Is that why Serge_spb said it would have been better if I had just pasted the text into the biody of the post, rather than attaching it?
    - Нет, подождём пока он сам скажет. Better: пока он сам его (name) скажет. To avoid potential confusion.
    So you mean
    - Нет, подождём пока он сам его имя скажет.
    Or can it just be '- Нет, подождём пока он сам его скажет.' because we know she's talking about his name?
    Point taken about my sentence being ambiguious. It's harder than I thought to write and then read it back to myself as if I was just another reader. A skill I don't have yet.

    Почему он такой тихий? Думаешь ему грустно из-за шока?
    There are 2 related concepts covered by the word 'shock'; the first is a sudden intense surprise, the second is a medical term for the physiological after effects of trauma. I think I just assumed that 'шок' would mean both in Russian too.

    зайчик как раз бросился наземь
    When I first got a 'house rabbit', we brought him home in a box, and after a long while, he jumped out of the box, sat still for a moment, and then threw himself violently onto his side, as if he'd just died of a massive heart attack! Very alarming, but it seems to be what rabbits do.

    а зайчик как раз бросился наземь/ как раз когда пришли вошли в комнату другие
    I had intended 'как раз' to mean 'just then' or 'just at that time'. Would it need to be 'как раз когда' in both these sentences?

    Thanks for ploughing your way through that. Is there a way I can make it easier to do? Or is it just posting the corrections that is unnecessarily difficult?

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    Don't worry about your text or about making it easier for me. It's not on your end. All's good

    Quote Originally Posted by grafrich
    Or can it just be '- Нет, подождём пока он сам его скажет.' because we know she's talking about his name?
    Yes, this. Его just refers back to "name".

    Quote Originally Posted by grafrich
    Почему он такой тихий? Думаешь ему грустно из-за шока?
    There are 2 related concepts covered by the word 'shock'; the first is a sudden intense surprise, the second is a medical term for the physiological after effects of trauma. I think I just assumed that 'шок' would mean both in Russian too.
    It does mean these two things in Russian as well. The thing is грустно means sadly. Do you feel sad from shock? I mean it doesn't make sense. Fear, surprise, pain... yes, but sadness? Not as a direct result of shock at the very least.

    Quote Originally Posted by grafrich
    зайчик как раз бросился наземь
    When I first got a 'house rabbit', we brought him home in a box, and after a long while, he jumped out of the box, sat still for a moment, and then threw himself violently onto his side, as if he'd just died of a massive heart attack! Very alarming, but it seems to be what rabbits do.
    Point taken I'm just not very familiar with rabbits. From what you said there it seems like you chose a perfect word in your Russian sentence, so great job!

    Quote Originally Posted by grafrich
    зайчик как раз бросился наземь/ как раз когда пришли вошли в комнату другие
    I had intended 'как раз' to mean 'just then' or 'just at that time'. Would it need to be 'как раз когда' in both these sentences?
    This is very hard to explain... Let's look at the whole sentences.

    Они улыбнулись друг другу на такое чудо, а зайчик как раз бросился наземь.
    Он вскрикнул, как раз когда вошли в комнату другие...

    They're both fine now. You see both sentences are compound. The first sentence looks like it consists of two fully independent clauses, so no need to put in some extra "stitching" words. The second sentence seems like the first clause is independent, but the second is not. So you need a connecting word like "когда". But it's sketchy and I'm not entirely sure I'm not talking nonsense now
    I do not claim that my opinion is absolutely true.
    If you've spotted any mistake in my English, please, correct it. I want to be aware of any mistakes to efficiently eliminate them before they become a habit.

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