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    Category: Language & Words

    This category features customers whose mishandling of vocabulary and grammar are so bad that we literally have no words to describe them!

    Es-pwñ-ol, Part 3

    | Newark, NJ, USA | Family & Kids, Language & Words, Technology

    (I’m with my mother buying a pouch and a case for my brothers hand-held gaming system. I go off on my own to find some computer games. Not even five minutes later I return to my mom looking very flustered with an employee. My mother and I are Peruvian. She speaks Spanish and struggles with English.)

    Me: *in Spanish* “Ma, are you okay?”

    Mom: *in Spanish* “No, I can’t remember the stupid name for this s***. The thing that covers the DS for you brother, what is it?”

    Me: *to the employee, in English* “Oh, my mom is looking for a cover for the 3DS. Do you have any?”

    Employee: “Yes, I showed your mom the selection right here; these are the ones we have.”

    Me: *in Spanish* “Ma, they only have these.”

    Mom: *in Spanish* “No, this f****** idiot isn’t understanding me! I want the ones in foam because your brother keeps breaking the plastic ones.”

    Employee: *in Spanish* “I’m sorry, ma’am, I know what you want. They’re over here at the next aisle.”

    (My mom turned a deep shade of red and mumbled out an apology, saying she was flustered and couldn’t control her temper. I was laughing so hard because I’m always telling my mom that just because she thinks they can’t understand her Spanish and talks s***, doesn’t mean she won’t get caught!)

    Related:
    Es-pwñ-ol, Part 2
    Es-pwñ-ol

    The Language Just Flows

    | France | Hotels & Lodging, Language & Words

    (My aunt and her family are in a hotel in France. We’re German, and she doesn’t really speak any French or English beyond a few words, just enough to get things hilariously wrong. She finds that their bathroom is missing its toilet brush (German word for brush: Bürste.) She decides to go to the reception desk to complain, only realising that she didn’t know all the English words for what she wanted to tell them.)

    Aunt: “Toilet burst! Toilet burst! TOILET BURST!”

    (The poor guy probably had visions of pure horror…)

    Not So Nuts About The Innuendo

    | Medford, MA, USA | Food & Drink, Language & Words, Rude & Risque

    (At our store, we have a rack of potato chips, peanuts, and other snacks that is a few steps away from the register. The customer puts a six-pack of beer on the counter, then steps away to grab something off the rack and comes back to the counter with some peanuts.)

    Customer: “You really should put your nuts on the counter.”

    Me: “I’m not sure how to respond to that.” *hoping he’d get how awkward it sounded, and laugh it off*

    Customer: “I might grab them more often, if you did.”

    Me: *trying not to laugh* “Yeah, they’re probably just fine right where they are.”

    (I’m pretty sure this guy was just clueless about what he said and not actually hitting on me!)

    The Oregon Fail, Part 3

    | Germany | Language & Words, Tourists/Travel

    (I am in Germany on a school trip. I have never been before, nor do I speak German. I am currently with two of my friends talking about going out to dinner on the train platform.)

    (A middle-aged man hurries up to me.)

    Man: “Guten tag!”

    Me: “…guten tag.”

    Man: *over enunciating* “Do. You. Speak. English?”

    Me: “…yeah?”

    Man: “Oh, thank god. Everyone’s so unhelpful around here! How do I get from [rattles off a number of places in quick succession].”

    Me: “I’m sorry…”

    Man: *cutting me off angrily* “I thought you said you spoke English!”

    Me: “I do. I just don’t know any of those places.”

    Man: “Why the h*** not?!”

    Me:” I’m from Oregon…”

    Related:
    The Oregon Fail, Part 2
    From NotAlwaysRelated:
    The Oregon Fail

    Putting Up A Language Barrier

    | Houston, TX, USA | Bizarre, Language & Words, Tourists/Travel

    (I’m working at an information booth at an international airport. I notice a woman in line scolding her children in Spanish. I myself am Latina. When she comes up to the counter:)

    Me: “¿En qué puedo servirle?” *How can I help you?*

    Customer: “This is America. Speak English.”

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