Sunday, August 5, 2012

Miscommunication 101 (or people, from different planets, sort of talking)

Disclaimer: All names have been changed to protect the people involved, while reflecting actual scenarios.

I love everything about California. The weather, the people, the buildings, and the lifestyle.

California is certainly the melting pot of cultures; With residents coming from around the globe; From Filipinos to Mexicans, Indians, Koreans, Chinese, Vietnamese and more.

Having all these nationalities makes life easier for me since I am a Filipino, an alien to this country. Because there is so much diversity, there is barely, if any, racial discrimination around here.

However, there is one disadvantage: The difficulty for us to understand each other due to our strong accents.

Care for some examples?

Below are two conversations I had with our previous gardener and nanny.

Scenario 1:

It was a Friday and it's time to cut a check for the nanny that used to work for us. I wasn't sure how to spell her full name so I went to her with my checkbook and pen on hand.

Can I get your full name for your check please, I asked. Then she gave me a long ass name that I have never heard in my entire life.

Mama nalyn: can you spell out your first name please?
Yaya: ok. It's D
Mama nalyn: D **writes D on the check**
Yaya: O
Mama nalyn: O
Yaya: Aw
Mama nalyn: Aw?
Yaya: AW. Aw For wabit
mama nalyn: wabit?
Yaya: WA-BIT. Wabit!!

Ohhhhhh... Rabbit!

Scenario 2:

I heard the doorbell rang so I went outside. There I saw our gardener, Juan, looking around our lawn.

Juan: "grass dirt leaves tree"
Mama nalyn: "what??? I'm sorry but I'm not understanding you."
Juan: "grass there no?"
Mama nalyn: "yes please. Mow the lawn."
Juan: "si. Si. Grass there noh?"
Mama nalyn: what? Yes cut the grass please
Juan: noh noh noh. Grass dirt leaves tree??


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