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    Studying Post-Grammatic Stress

    | Bozeman, MT, USA |

    (I work for the university Psychology department where several labs have students participate in experiments. A girl is wandering around the hall looking lost.)

    Me: “Excuse me, but you look a little lost. Can I help you find something?”

    Volunteer: “Yeah, I signed up to participate in an experiment, but I don’t remember which one or what the requirements were.”

    Me: “Alright, that’s fine. We can look you up on one of our computers. Can I have your name?”

    Volunteer: “[Name].”

    (I go to the office computer and her name, the experiment and the requirements.)

    Me: “Alright, well it looks like you’re going to be in the lab down the hall and the only requirement is that you should be a native English speaker.”

    Volunteer: “Oh, but I don’t know that language.”

    Me: “What language?”

    Volunteer: “Native English, I’m not familiar with that language, only regular English. I’ll just go tell them I can’t do it. Thanks!”