Monday, July 17, 2006

Too oft repeated.

Last week Cindy told me that on a trip to Spain, people kept saying "konichiwa" to her, even though she's Chinese. At first it was just amusing but after the 800th time, it really got on her nerves. One night near the end of the trip, after a few drinks, when yet another guy said it to her, she erupted at him. "Why the fuck would you say konichiwa? Do I look Japanese? I'm Chinese!! Why would you fucking say that to me???"

Me: "Poor guy. He probably went home thinking to himself, 'Japanese girls are mean.'"

There are two phrases that people say to me over and over, that have gotten tiresome.

Scenario 1.
Me: [meeting someone new] Hello, nice to meet you.

Person: Nice to meet you too. What kind of work do you do?

Me: I'm a tech lead at Google for a new project.

Person: A secret project??

Me: Yes.

Person: So you could tell me, but then you'd have to kill me! Ha! Ha!

Me: [thinking] Oh, if only I could. [out loud] Ha ha, yeah.

...

Scenario 2.
Me: [talking to friend] Hey, how's it going. What'd you do today?

Friend: I woke up, ate some leftover pizza, watched the World Cup, and then came to this party. Hey, is this going to go in your blog?? Are you going to blog this to everyone?

Me: [thinking] No, I only blog interesting things. [out loud] Ha ha, no.

5 comments:

Sagaro said...

Thats more than two phrases... :p

ArC said...

I think in both situations, you should say what's in your head. At least that way they'd probably come up less often.

Tom Owen said...

"long time reader, first time poster...;-)
Konichiwa!
Your post reminded me of Helio's new TV spot:

Anonymous said...

What will the people say to me when I am in China? Hello (English ) or Hallo (Dutch)? How can they know I'm Dutch? And if they know, would they know words like Hallo or Goedemorgen? Do you know these words Niniane? Or does Cindy know these words?

What is it that you want to say Niniane? Or what is Cindy's message?

RC, The Netherlands

Anonymous said...

The "Hallo" is actually because Chinese people can't pronounce "Hello" properly. Don't worry, the ones you met didn't know any Dutch.