In case you're the sort of person who notices such things, I've added a couple of links to dictionaries into the sidebar. That's because I've decided I'm too lazy to translate every single Turkish word I use into English. This is perhaps a bit rude for my non-Turkish-speaking readers, but I've just gotten tired of all the parentheticals. Which probably isn't a word but I don't care. And I also recognize the complete pretentious dorkiness of throwing Turkish words into English sentences, but I've been here too long to care about that either. There just aren't any English words that exactly capture "bakkal." "Corner store" is close but not close enough. Or "soba" (I'm just thinking back to my last post here). "Small coal-burning stove" is just unwieldy, and "brazier" is confusingly out-dated and it sounds much finer than what a soba actually is, plus it sounds like "brassiere."
So. The first dictionary is just your basic Turkish English dictionary. It's a bit weird because a lot of it appears to be copy-pasted from a number of sources, and there isn't always have enough regard for the realities of English (that's the best way I can think of putting it), but it gets the job done and it's the best one online I know of. I even got the free Sesli Sözlük app for my iPhone.
Oh iPhone. How do I love thee?
The other dictionary is super-cool. For turning me on to it, a heartfelt thanks to Bülent, a faithful commenter who takes the time to give additional helpful info and insight and he's never once been rude when I've said things that are wrong or mean. Ekşi Sözlük is user-generated, where people write in their definitions for words and phrases. For Turkish, it's one of neatest things I've ever found, and it's very well-suited to the nature of Turkish and Turkish people.
Of course, every language has its cultural baggage and every word has its contextual issues. You can certainly debate the meanings of words and sayings in English, but one reason I think English is becoming so quickly global is that the language itself is so low-context. You don't have to live in America to get a pretty good idea of what most things mean.
But Turkish, I don't know how people learn it outside of Turkey. Since there are fewer lexical items than in English, each word does its job and then some, with many meanings and slippery nuances that can change completely just because you raise your eyebrow or change your voice a certain way. That's why Ekşi Sözlük works so well (when I can understand it). Instead of getting one person's opinion on what a word means, it's like asking at a party and having everyone tell you what it means, and then they tell you story of its life, and then they all get into a big argument about it. At the end of a long page, I may not know exactly what it means, but instead there is some sort of consensus (or not) about what everyone thinks it means.
Which is all language is anyway, right? Have fun!