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Re: The weirdo.

the language barrier. a brief story.

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this happened today, as i am still in switzerland on holiday (woo).

i was out walking the dog a short distance from the place i'm staying and suddenly, there was this one rather old lady who yelled out "monseuir!" and tryed to talk to me about something.

now of course, as you can tell from my probably HORRIBLY butchered spelling of the only french word i understood, i do not speak french. the only french i know is "pair lais vous anglais" and i'm pretty sure i spelled that right, but that means, roughly "do you speak english?" and that is not sufficient for holding a conversation in french.

now this lady KEEPS on going after i ask her "pear lays voo angles" and says "oui" but keePS spEAKING fRENCH dAMMIT. she keeps going on and i can't understand what she is talking about. she doesn't seem mad, she seems quite pleased with herself, but of course, i freak out anyway because i don't know what she is saying, so... "j'ma pelle tourist" of course, not knowing what the french word for tourist is, but i assume, if i pronounce it like "tor-east" i figure it will work. of course, a google search now would tell you that the "j'ma pelle" is for introducing ones name. and of course, i did not remember that from my dumb 8 year old me's french lesson.

now, she keeps on talking so i try my best to make my facial expressions as confused as possible

V pic related

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kinda generic, but it'll do

this goes on for a while, so i just say "uuhh... oh reh voir",  go back inside, eat food, wonder who she thought i was, general anxiety stuff, etc.

after that, try and take dog out for a walk again, and it goes fine.

then i just came here to post it for some proof that i am still alive

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I remember a professor of mine told a story of how they and some students went to Quebec. They go to a bar or restaurant or something to relax, and one of the female students started dancing with some local Quebecois males (French-speaking Quebec people, as opposed to English-speaking Quebeckers). She wanted to stop, so she said in French "I am hot." -or that is what she thought she said. What she actually said was "I am in heat.". I forget how the consequences of this went.

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this is why the only spanish I know is "no habla espanol", it clearly states my precidicimate without any way for them to brush it off as a simple question of the skill of the other speaker.

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It always makes me nervous when I go to a country and can't speak the language but whenever someone comes up and speaks to me I start speaking languages that aren't my native ones and I don't know why. 

One time I said something back to a Turk, while I was in Istanbul, in French and then they exclaimed "Ah!" and then started speaking in French and I just stood there and smiled because my French was rusty. So then I just said bye in Turkish and walked away, abandoning the toothpaste I wanted to buy.
I'm trying to improve...

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usually when I go to a country i try to learn the "survival kit of language" thing like hello, goodbye, do you speak {language} and then when I don't know a word I try using it in another language: I once used Latin to ask directions to an Italian (and it worked).

Btw did you like Switzerland? 

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6 hours ago, Interdimensional Observer said:

I remember a professor of mine told a story of how they and some students went to Quebec. They go to a bar or restaurant or something to relax, and one of the female students started dancing with some local Quebecois males (French-speaking Quebec people, as opposed to English-speaking Quebeckers). She wanted to stop, so she said in French "I am hot." -or that is what she thought she said. What she actually said was "I am in heat.". I forget how the consequences of this went.

Lo and behold, this is why you say "J'ai chaud" and not "Je suis chaud." I'm glad I'm not going to any foreign country that speaks a language other than English because I would die there.

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On 7/30/2018 at 12:18 PM, Interdimensional Observer said:

I remember a professor of mine told a story of how they and some students went to Quebec. They go to a bar or restaurant or something to relax, and one of the female students started dancing with some local Quebecois males (French-speaking Quebec people, as opposed to English-speaking Quebeckers). She wanted to stop, so she said in French "I am hot." -or that is what she thought she said. What she actually said was "I am in heat.". I forget how the consequences of this went.

Oh my god this is hilarious.

I read stories about this kind of thing in advertising. The Chevy Nova didn't sell well in Spanish speaking countries because nova means "doesn't go". Also an ink pen was advertised as "it won't leak in your pocket and embarrass you" but it translated to "it won't leak in your pocket and make you pregnant" lol.

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On 7/30/2018 at 2:11 PM, (s)ad touch said:

now of course, as you can tell from my probably HORRIBLY butchered spelling of the only french word i understood, i do not speak french. the only french i know is "pair lais vous anglais" and i'm pretty sure i spelled that right, but that means, roughly "do you speak english?" and that is not sufficient for holding a conversation in french.

parlez vous

On 8/1/2018 at 12:13 PM, Dragoncat said:

Oh my god this is hilarious.

I read stories about this kind of thing in advertising. The Chevy Nova didn't sell well in Spanish speaking countries because nova means "doesn't go". Also an ink pen was advertised as "it won't leak in your pocket and embarrass you" but it translated to "it won't leak in your pocket and make you pregnant" lol.

nope, nova in spanish means... nova

"no va" would mean "it doesnt go," but i really cant see a native speaker misinterpreting that. theyre not the same. this sounds like one of those stories a foreign language teacher would tell you to help you remember the meaning of a word.

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